Have you noticed how often an article grows much bigger in importance than itself by hundreds and even thousands of comments on HuffPost? It is like a piece of sculpture taking immense and complex shape, often acquiring new meaning and character, by the handwork of several people.
Of course, to experience this phenomena, the original post needs to be riveting enough to catch your attention and curiosity, stirring and forming strong opinions within yourself compelling enough to make you read through and also listen in to what others have to say.
For anyone interested in the topic of the original piece, for whatever reason, opinion of others may turn out to be as important or even more attention worthy.
If the topic is very provocative or acquire mass appeal, the discussion more often than not, can turn in to even totally unconnected subjects.
For all these, you need to keep a track and constant checking of the comment stream, either by visiting the site or by subscribing through email. There are no hard and fast rules about it; it has to happen naturally. You need to be patient.
Thousands and even millions of these wonderful streams of human thought and interaction, often carrying rare insight, information and data you may need a lifetime to collect routinely get buried in the innards of zillions of hard drives in the cyberspace.
For most people, like newspapers and magazines of yester years buried in libraries all over the world, the stuff doesn't exist until someone searches it out.
However for research scholars and enterprising journalists, this treasure of information can be goldmines to dig up and produce valuable new pieces of great interest.
Thanks to Google and the Internet, the comment streams buried in the cyberspace can be valuable and easily explorable resources for enterprising and ingenious bloggers. However, with a few good points to remember and practice, writing your blog posts from others comments can be a rewarding and learning experience.
Google - Always Your Starting Point
If you are on a writing assignment, it is easy, you already have a topic and key words to search for. If you are short of ideas, and wonder what to blog on, your best bet is to dig out what is bothering or exciting you at that moment.
If you are the type who always think you have an empty head, your best bet is to look for anything you wanted to write on but never managed. The best places the directory you habitually save things, scraps of paper or pads where you jot down things.
In any case, Google is the place to start and soon you will have pages after pages of Titles and descriptions. Just read through them however scant attention you can muster and soon you will find a page with a post, image, video or some form of content which catch your fancy or with high degree of relevance to what you are searching for. You now have a Topic to write about.
Find Your Comments Stream
Chances are you are on an article or a blog post which have attracted some social media attention and even some comments. Read carefully to get the idea of the post and comments with which you can refine your search until you find a few posts with sizable comments under them. The bigger the number of comments the better.
Keep Building Your Article As You Go Down The Stream
Now is the time for the hard work. No cheating here! You really have to read through, carefully, first through the post and then through the comments of readers under it however boring or insipid they appear to be for your taste and opinion. You may have to revisit comments and the post itself to get an idea of how things have evolved in the stream.
As you do so, you can start building your posts by copying and pasting statements you think are relevant and add to your own ideas and opinions which you will keep typing as they occur.
Your lines don't have to be full or complete or even correct. What is important is build your post which will gradually take shape and make sense supported by the comments you have annotated.
Always Give Credit Where It Is Due
Obviously, you will mention the post and the author of the posts you are referring to with links in your post. But don't forget the people who have commented and whose comments you use in your own post.
As you collect annotations don't forget to type in any names of the person who has commented if available, with links or other info he or she has left with the comment.
Always find a way to give the credit to that person in your post by quoting. If no names are available, use block quote to indicate that the statement is someone else's and you are using it to support your view or argument.
It Is Easier Done Than Said!
Writing an entire post from a comment stream is not all that difficult. To prove my point, here is a post I have recently created and published from a single post and its comment stream.
With zillions of hidden comment streams out there you have no more excuse not to create that post you always wanted to write. Try it and let me know what you feel about it.