Posted by: Mark Nichols
12 Jul 2008
[Warning: annoying hypothetical article intro]
You've begun exploring the superhighway internets and now realize that there are many opportunities for posting your own comments after articles or on forums. Many websites (including ESPN) even feature selected comments so that you can become a mini-celebrity for your 15 minutes (or seconds) of fame. But what is considered appropriate posting behavior? How can you excel in this world of commenting? Here are some things to remember:
Are you the first person to stumble onto the article? What luck! Let the world know by posting the comment "first." That way, all will be able to worship your speed and web-agility. If you're the second person to find the article, you could always post "second." Being in the top 10 is still admirable, especially if you expect there to be hundreds of comments.
2) Tons of Posts
It's quantity, not quality. When you find a thread or article you enjoy, make sure to post numerous comments, responding to others and making assumptions about what they really meant. This will lengthen the conversation and provide you more opportunities to post. If the site you're on keeps track, you'll soon be regarded as an expert because of the quantity of your comments. You can even speed up the process by hitting the "refresh" button every time after you post. On many sites this action will automatically re-post what you just wrote. That way, your "first" comment will be shown a zillion times instead of just once. Rubbing it in the rest of the world's face that they're second shouldn't cause any hard feelings - it'll just make their worship of you all that more easy to do.
3) Wasting Time
Make sure to post a comment stating something like: "Posting here is a waste of time. Shouldn't the person who wrote this and everyone who is commenting be out helping orphans or something?" This will remind everyone that there are more important things in the world to deal with than reading articles and posting comments. (You, of course, do not need such reminding, but out of the goodness of your heart, you have taken it upon yourself to dive into this sordid world of posting in order to lift others up.)
Nothing will carry your message home better than rampant use of exclamation points! For extra credit, you could even throw in poor spelling so that people will realize it's the content of your message that's important - that you just don't have the time to worry about dotting those I's or crossing those T's. There are people's lives at stake here!
Bring up my post. Make a comment solely to bring up a thread that you started, or that you think needs more attention (sometimes the thread will get moved to the top of the page). Get around pesky bump restrictions by actually making an insightful remark such as "Thoughts?" This will show the world how sensitive you are to open dialogue. This will in no way reveal what an egocentric maniac you are in wanting your comments or thread to gain more attention.
These tips should get you started. You'll soon be an expert in the world of posting.