It's increasingly clear that the comment trail has become unwieldy.
Comments have increased dramatically over the past few weeks and months. If it was due to new people commenting that would be one thing (and a good thing) but it's not. It's that the comments have increasingly gone farther off topic, and gotten MUCH longer.
In fact, one handy commenter toted up the word count recently and it was more than 11K for one blog post.
That's just nuts.
Here are some things I'd like us to think about:
1. The comments are an integral part of this blog. They add value to it.
2. When the comment trail blows up it's hard for readers to see what's of value because there is simply too much there to read.
When people say "oh, there are 90 comments, too many" that's a danger sign.
For the people who are commenting, here's something to consider:
If you're commenting multiple times a day, are you here commenting rather than working on your writing? What's your priority? What's going to get you closer to your goal?
I'm not going to tell you what you can and cannot write (at least not yet) because often when the comment trail goes hilariously, wildly off topic, it's the most fun.
I'm going to ask that you think about a couple things before you post:
1. Is there at least something on-topic in the comment?
2. Are you asking a question about the blog post itself?
3. Are you responding to a previous comment?
Answering yes to any of those questions keeps you on the right side of vommenting.
4. Is the comment more than 25 lines?
5. Is the comment more about you/your work than it is about the topic at hand?
6. Have you posted multiple times (ie 5+) to one blog post**?
**there are exceptions to this, principally Colin Smith who very helpfully posts links for what other commenters have posted as non-live html. That does NOT count as over-posting.
Answering yes to these questions indicates you are NOT on the right side of vommenting.
We're all adults here, and capable of controlling ourselves.
I think we can self-regulate.
If we can't, there are two rather Draconian solutions which I prefer not to employ:
1. Comments can be moderated
2. Comments can be edited (ie deleted as I see fit)
Neither of these "solutions" appeal to me, but if we want this blog to remain accessible to new readers, kept manageable for daily readers, and if we want to continue with the Week in Review, we need to temper our verbosity.
Now, back to the task at hand: reading queries.
PS there will be another post today, a writing contest. This post is just housekeeping.