Saturday, June 26, 2004

Commenting

The "comment" function on blogs is, in my opinion, one of the things that make them valuable. If I see something stupid on CNN or in the New York Times, or hear something stupid on the radio, there's not much I can do on an immmediate basis. On most blogs, you can voice your opposing (or agreeing) opinion immediately. On many blogs, some of the most interesting material turns up in the comments, and even here, people like Thatcoloredfella, RM, and LJ do a great job of enhancing the level of thought.

That's why I think that blogs like Michelle Malkin's are a frustration - so much stupidity there to correct, but no opportunity to explain all her mistatements right there. A blog without commenting is a declaration that the writer is interested in political posturing, not debate.

This past week, I learned of something even more insidious - the bloggers who appear to allow commenting, but edit them down so that they appear to come out on top. In the past, I've posted comments on Matt Margolis' blog. He's an insecure young conservative who reminds me a bit of myself at that age - thinks he's smarter than the rest of the world, with a tendency to be obnoxious and shallow (I'm sure many of my college friends could elaborate!). Recently, I noticed that some of them weren't showing up - which I attributed to a glitch in the software. Earlier this week, though, Matt confessed that he's disallowed posting from me! Why? Because one of my comments pointed out that he was wrong when he claimed the New York Times wouldn't publish something!

Here's my policy on commenting: Go for it. The only way I'll wind up deleting a comment is if it includes something so offensive that people of even hardened sensibilities would be shocked (kiddie porn or something like that), or something that could get me in trouble (instructions on how to disrupt a presidential motorcade, or something like that). If I DO delete one of your comments, I'll substitute a comment explaining what it was, and why it was deleted. I'd much rather "play fair" than "win".

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