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Is Twitter Stealing Community from Blogs?


So after my post about the Social Media Police yesterday, an interesting discussion ensued. In fact, it was probably one of the better blog post discussions of my career. Except it didn’t take place here, it took place on Twitter. That in itself isn’t a terrible thing, but as a blogger, it’s sort of my duty to build community here at the BlogWorld blog.

I see it happening all the time, discussions take place at Facebook or Twitter, and not in the comments section of the post that started it all.

Is Twitter stealing community away from blogs?

I’ve discussed this before. When I was a community manager it was my job to build communities beyond that of our website. I had a couple of Facebook groups going, some Ning action, a forum and I engaged on Twitter every day. However, people were married to their favorite groups and social networks. They didn’t really feel like visiting the website each day. Instead of building a community, I built cliques. Nowadays no one needs to visit a blog, not when we can read the same posts on a newsletter or access them via feeds or on a Facebook page. The content has to be extremely compelling for folks to come by to comment.

Don’t get me wrong. I love being able to chat with you all on Twitter. I live for these discussions, but if I can’t bring you back here,  what’s the point of my blogging? (Note to Rick: Don’t think about that one too hard, ‘kay?)  So I’ve been thinking about ways engage the community but bring them back here for a bit of conversation. Short of an open bar, some of my options include:

  • Reminding the folks on Twitter to chat here – but that’s kind of spammy and I don’t want to move or break up a good discussion.
  • Try not to encourage a Twitter discussion – but that defeats the purpose. I mean, if no one is going to talk to me here, I’ll take it any way I can get it.
  • Post about it and see if you all have some pointers – This works for me. What would you do?
  • Give you a reason to come here – I hope the content speaks for itself. If you think so, give us a bookmark and come by from time to time (or every day) to say hello.

So talk to me…to us. Tell us what you do to build up your community on the social networks and keep them coming back to your blogs for the discussion?

Is there a polite way to take a conversation from Twitter or Facebook and direct it back to the source?

My mission is apparent. I’ll keep you posted.

Deb Ng is a professional blogger and founder of the Freelance Writing Jobs network. Feel free to follow her on Twitter @debng.


  • Rick Calvert

    There has to be some tool that I am currently unaware of that lets you aggregate the discussion generated on Twitter and Facebook and pull it back to the comments section of the blog.

    • Jim Turner

      I think you are talking about Echo’s formerly known as JS.Kit’s program.

  • Dave Lucas

    Try as I may, I have never been able to entice commenters to “gather” in forum-fashion on my blog (although I’ve seen other bloggers who’ve been able to) : what I HAVE seen other bloggers do (and I do it too) is run a widget with my last 5 tweets in the sidebar! I thread my blogpots through both twitter and facebook too!

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