Comment Complications

It used to be so simple: if someone had a comment on a blog post, they could (usually) leave a comment at that blog post. Now commenting is complicated by questions such as the following.

  • Who is commenting? Is it even a person, rather than a spambot?
  • Where to leave the comment? Using the blog software’s own comment function? Does the blog use a comment service such as Disqus? How about FriendFeed, or Twitter, or Reddit, or…
  • Who owns the comment?
  • Where are all the comments on a particular post, or conversation of which the post is a part?

I’d say that the first two of the above questions are the more basic, but the last two are more interesting. The question of who owns a comment is addressed by the Commenter’s Bill of Rights proposed by Disqus Daniel.

As for how to pull together the comments associated with a specific post, that may be a great opportunity as well as a great challenge. If you provide the service that pulls the comments together, you have a chance to run your ads along with the comments.

I recently quoted Duncan Riley: blogging 2.0 is about enabling the conversation across many blogs and supporting sites and services. That sounds like a 2.0 release: interestingly different, but doesn’t really work. It’ll only really work when the conversation can be tracked and aggregated, rather than allowed to happen. When we get such aggregation, we’ll have blogging 2.1, the release that works.

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