With the launch of my new blog a little over nine months I ago I made the strategic decision to remove the ability to leave a comment on my posts. Instead I opted to offer Twitter’s Tweet Box for anyone who wished to discuss the topic at hand. Today I have removed the Tweet Box and reinstated the commenting form.
A blog post can remain relevant for days, weeks or even years depending on the subject matter. Twitter’s fundamental architecture is based on the premise of capturing thoughts and insights in real-time. Tweet’s are condensed, time-relevant pieces of information and differs from a blog comment which has a much longer half-life.
Tweet/Blog Reply Approach
Happy Cog take a different approach to their blog comments allowing users to tweet their thoughts or respond to the article by way of their blog. It’s a nifty idea, but does it work? From looking at the tweets which are aggregated on the site the short messages seem to be used by many as a way of broadcasting the message of the article, very few actually add to it or ask questions which can be answered in in a tweet’s worth of words.
Comment Voting Approach
The way in which Reddit uses its commenting system is one we may see coming through on other platforms. If a user contributes something interesting to the conversation other users can choose to upvote or downvote a comment. The more upvotes a comment receives the higher up the comment list it will rise and vice versa. This allows the community to vet the relevance of a statement.
Commenting has got itself a bad name, we just have to have a gander below the videos on YouTube for evidence of why. I do think commenting still has a place on the web going into 2011. I don’t think the answer is simply forgetting about them altogether, but a greater focus should be put on moderation, rewards (the gamification of commenting) and ways in which valuable content is shared.