Commentluv, in my honest opinion, is one of the most misunderstood and abused plugins in WordPress. Even with over Commentluv having over 900,000 downloads (as of October 2015), some of the users can’t really understand what it’s for.
When Andy Bailey created Commentluv, back in 2009, it was during the time in the blogosphere where people were trying to emphasize the “I return comments” movement. This “I return comments” movement was to encourage bloggers to return comments on other bloggers websites. Andy found a need to encourage this by creating Commentluv, and labeling it as a way to reward bloggers for leaving a comment. It was also to help grow your traffic because your website was encouraging meangingful engagement.
The reward was leaving a link to a most recent post from the commentators blog.
This reward worked in 2 ways:
- Easily allowed the blog owner to click on the link to the commentator’s most recent post.
- Easily allowed other commentators to click on the link left by other bloggers
In returning the comment, it not only added to the commentator’s blog, but also built a relationship between yourself and your readers.
Here’s a example of how Commentluv looks on Blondish.net (you can click on it, and it will open in a lightbox so you can see the image better):
This idea and plugin caught on, and was something that bloggers loved. The idea worked. I still have the premium version of Commentluv on my own website, which contains extra features like combatting comment spam, leaving a twitter link, social sharing, moderating who is rewarded, and a notification for when someone replies to your comment.
The original idea of the plugin worked for a time. Then, the greed and confusion set in. Some commentators were finding out that Search Engines were rewarding link juice to Commentluv enabled websites. It wasn’t much, but for the really greedy, that’s where they would mass comment spam across the blogosphere. Of course, a lot of those people ended up penalized later on.
However, today, even some people call it some comment system like it’s Disqus or LiveFyre. (It’s not.) Some peopler are still hopped up on the idea that the plugin will give them major link juice. Others… well they’re just installing it because leading bloggers in the blogosphere and WordPress community tell them that they should.
If you’re using Commentluv, and didn’t know about the real intention of the plugin… now you know. It’s important to bring back the true message of this plugin, and really, if time allows, try getting into the return comments to build a meaningful relationship with your blog peers.
Do you use Commentluv? Were you aware of what it’s purpose was intended for?