Scott asked an interesting question about comments--
Why is it that so often the essays that one likes the best, thinks may be among the best things one has ever written, get no comments?
Answering this, I think, demands that we answer a big question, What are comments for?
If you read any Xangas (the blog service that most of my students use which I have quit reading for a time...you can know too much), the kids blatantly demand comments, and the ones that are made are mostly just "UR so amazing! muah!". I don't think any adult blogger wants that, at least they won't admit it. I admit that as much as I enjoy compliments about and on this blog, I always squirm a bit, afraid that I am fishing and that I have somehow coerced you with some adult equivilent of "comment, bitches."
Some posts ask for comments more tactfully. The post is some sort of question, and you are asked to answer. You'll have that here soon, hang on a bit.
And while we're talking about you, it's also worth noting that I have weird feelings about lurkers. Somehow, I feel like if you know me in real life, you ought to somehow let me know you're out there. When you see someone in a play, it's only polite to say something. It's a form of the same thing. This blog is my first effort at writing for some other than academic purpose and so silence somehow indicates disapproval for me. I admit, it's my fault for getting to know my stat counter so well that I know who some of you are. This sort of comment is minimal, "Hey, good to find you here". Mojo did it, why can't you?
But I think what Scott's looking for is real conversation. You read a post and something about it compels you to relate and interact with the writing and the author. It's a hard type of comment to have sometimes. Witness the 99/Anonymous debacle of earlier this fall. I so clearly imagined that post one way that I think I just wasn't planning a whole other slant on what I said (Don't let this stop any of you now, the meds are working again and I can handle polite society). It's conversation, but harder. We can't predict what others will say, but we get to hear another take on our writing. I think that's what Scott's talking about. It demands the reader will identify and feel what they have to say is vital enough to the conversation. Frankly, I don't always have that much time or confidence. Sometimes I don't look to the internet for interaction as much as entertainment. At times, we are all just passive readers.
What do you think? How does it happen that a person works for hours to define exactly what it is they feel about a vital topic and I shelp out four sentences about bookmarks in three minutes and get six comments? What are comments for? What makes you decide to interact with a post and an author?
But please don't think you have to comment. Fishing for comments is so very Xanga.