Stuart made the following comment about the requirement for PFRE blog commenters to identify themselves with a website URL:
In response to you saying that you are looking for suggestions. your introduction says, in part " My primary goal for the blog is to help people get started ...." In order for novices to participate in discussions, you require that we have a website? For those of us starting out, that requirement prohibits us for taking part in the blog, we can only be bystanders. A website is the last thing that beginners would consider as our money is spent on equipment, and the quality of work does not justify a website. I wish you could make a website optional and not a requirement.
A couple of points in response to your suggestion:
- You are missing the point of why I require a website be posted to leave a comment. When commenters are known and somewhat identifiable it results in more civil discussions. Also, a website helps establish the credibility of the commenter. Requiring a website identification over the last year and a half has improved the nature of the comments and the usefulness of the discussions on the PFRE blog in a very positive way. I would never go back to allowing commenters to be anonymous.
- There is no requirement that the website in comments should be a full blown real estate photographer website. It could be a FaceBook page or your Flickr stream (like Wayne uses). It could be a free website with just your contact info on it. There are many places to create a free website.
- I disagree; a website is NOT the last thing to consider. You should start building an online presence while you are building a portfolio. And it doesn't require spending any money! One example is wix.com. There are many other places to start out with free websites.
Thanks for bringing up this point! I'm sure it's an irritant for others but it doesn't need to be. Don't be a bystander. Spend few minutes to create an online presence to identify yourself and join in!!