Kottke Adds Comments kottke.org

Jason Kottke, with the answer to why?:

The timing feels right. Twitter has imploded and social sites/services like Threads, Bluesky, and Mastodon are jockeying to replace it (for various definitions of “replace”). People are re-thinking what they want out of social media on the internet and I believe there’s an opportunity for sites like kottke.org to provide a different and perhaps even better experience for sharing and discussing information. Shit, maybe I’m wrong but it’s definitely worth a try.

Only active kottke.org members will be permitted to comment, and there is a reasonable set of guidelines. Defector and few other sites I visit have also tied commenting to paid memberships, and it seems like a good compromise all around. It creates a more balanced investment — emotional and financial — between the author and their community, and gives people a little badge of honour.

I have long had comments switched off here and I, too, have wondered if the stratification of social media should encourage a more localized community. There are sites out there with good comments sections: in addition to the aforementioned Defector, the discussion on some Techdirt and Metafilter posts are also often good. Alas, it is another thing to maintain, another vector for marketing spam, and something else I would need to design. Truly — one of the reasons I have not put comments here is because I do not like the way they look.

One thing I have noticed since the great fleeting of Twitter has been an uptick in the number of reader emails I receive. I think I prefer that, even though I am terrible at replying. I delight in a little one-on-one discussion with someone challenging something I wrote, adding to it with a personal experience, or merely correcting a typo. If you have ever emailed me, please know that I have read what you wrote. The same is true of mentions on any other platform, too, but email feels especially personal. For commenting on a personal website, that seems right to me.