Comments or Not?

Visualgui.com sure feels cold and lonely without the visitors’ voice. Comments make this place more exciting because they give her a sense of community, but dealing with them takes tremendous efforts. Whenever comments are enabled, so are spams, but let’s not get into that. The much harder part is to go through every comment to see if it is appropriate or not. Ninety percent of the time, I don’t care if the comments are aimed at me (What can I do? Some people just love throwing rocks at my throne.). But when controversial issues bring to the table, people breaking them down like scientists, and then attacking each other like chemical warfare. As a moderator, I always have a difficult time deciding which comment should stay and which one should go. I try my best to weed out insulting comments, but no matter what I delete, I am accused of being biased. As a result, my only solution is to shut down the entire post.

The not-so-good part of closing off the comments is that the site feels empty, and I have received complaints on it already. The good part, however, is that I get private messages from regular readers who I have conversed back and forth on certain topics, but never get a chance to know them on the personal level until now. I am thankful for that. You know who you are.

While we’re still on the comments topic, I find Jeremy Keith’s post, “Comments on Community,” to be interesting. He breaks down the pros and cons of allowing comments on a blog, and I agree with most of his points, especially this:

I don’t think we should be looking at comments to see conversations. It isn’t much of a conversation when the same person determines the subject matter of every dialogue. The best online conversations I’ve seen have been blog to blog: somebody posts something on their blog; somebody else feels compelled to respond on their own blog. The quality of such a response is nearly always better than a comment on the originating blog for the simple reason that people care more about what appears on their own site than on someone else’s.

The perfect example is what Buddhist With an Attitude posted on her blog commenting on the controversial issues on this site. Thanks for the holla, lady. On a side note, the photo, which is perfect for the title, “Long Suffering Vietnam,” is disturbing: an AK pointing at women’s head. Does it matter if she’s a communist or not? That’s not how we treat a human being, especially a senior citizen. But let me not bringing up any more heat on this subject.

Back to the commenting. Although prohibiting comments is a temporary solution until my site gets back on the regular server, I might continue to do so if it works out well.

Bonjour Vietnam