Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 10th Jan 2012 23:53 UTC
OSNews, Generic OSes The last few weeks there's been a considerable amount of chatter on the web about whether or not a news website, blog, or some hybrid thereof, needs comments. Since we are working on the next version of OSNews, which means I've been thinking about things like this a lot, I figured I'd pen down my thoughts on comments.
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Without Comments, No Community
by benali72 on Wed 11th Jan 2012 08:15 UTC
Member since:

Without comments, a web site lacks a community and becomes sterile.

I would suggest changing the Comment Engine at OSNews to allow moderation regardless of whether one has commented on an article, and to allow comments to be added as long as the article remains on the first page.

Removing these artificial limitations would increase the volume and quality of comments here.

Reply Score: 7

bryhhh Member since:

+1; I'd definitely up vote your comment, but I've already posted in the thread.

Reply Parent Score: 2

sorpigal Member since:

I agree that commenting should remain enabled as long as the article is on the front page, but this is probably difficult. Certainly it will give an unfortunately varying length of comment time, given the sometimes sporadic and sometimes frantic rate of articles around here.

Moderating after you've posted is dangerous. I'd prefer it if moderation were turned off for your own posts and replies to them (basically, to threads rooted at posts you make) rather than being "on or off" for a whole story. It makes sense to say "You're talking in this thread, so no more moderating in it" more than for a whole story. Often times I find myself wanting to moderate one tangent of comments on a story but comment on an unrelated one.

Reply Parent Score: 4

Neolander Member since:

+10 to this ! ;)

Reply Parent Score: 1

BeamishBoy Member since:

Without comments, a web site lacks a community and becomes sterile.

Although it caters to a different audience, a famous counterexample exists which disproves this: Andrew Sullivan's site.

Sullivan deals mostly with politics in his blog but - famously - draws a hugely wide readership. He's repeatedly floated the idea of allowing comments on his posts but his readers have always overwhelmingly voted to keep comments off the site.

Instead, he and his team hand pick emails submitted by readers and publish them as posts. The signal-to-noise ratio on Sullivan's site is enormous as a result.

Reply Parent Score: 1