Advertising a Post’s Comments

As you’ve seen, comments appear right underneath the post they refer to. They don’t
appear at all in the reverse-chronological list of posts that acts as the home page
for most WordPress sites. You can think of it this way: Each post is like a separate
room at a party, with its own conversation. The same guests can wander between
rooms and join different conversations, but the conversation from one room doesn’t
intrude on the conversation in the next.

However, WordPress does attempt to alert readers to the presence of comments
in the post list, if not their content. If a post has at least one comment, WordPress
shows the comment count next to that post. If a post doesn’t have any comments,
WordPress displays a “Leave a comment” link. Technically, your site theme controls
this detail, but most are fairly consistent in this practice.

Here’s another way to highlight comments on your home page: Use the Recent
Comments widget, which highlights the most recent comments made on any post
or page . When you add this widget (in the Appearance→Widgets
section of the dashboard), you can choose the number of recent comments it lists.
The standard setting is 5.

TIP If you want a better Recent Comments widget, there are plenty of plug-ins that fill the gap. Most excerpt
the first part of the comment and display it right inside the widget to give readers a taste of the conversation
(and to encourage them to join in). See, for example, the Better WordPress Recent Comments plug-in
(http://tinyurl.com/wprecentcomments).

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Advertising a Post’s Comments

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