Thursday 9 September 2010

Comment on comments policy

My policy on comments may need explaining.

I am selective about publishing comments, and - on the whole - only publish a few comments that I feel will (in some way) enhance the blog for its readership.

I think this is necessary because many blogs are spoiled (spoiled for me, that is) by their comment section.

But of course, this policy means that some commenters will put a lot of effort into a comment which will not be published (although I will have read it). I can only say I am sorry about wasting commenters time in this way, but it is the only way that I can manage the comments.

This policy may not be sustainable, and if it is not sustainable I will again disable the comments.

As an alternative to commenting, I would emphasize that I am pleased to get e-mails from readers; and will reply.


dearieme said...

What about Off Topic comments? For instance, if I draw your attention to a fascinating blog remark that pertains to your interest in bad science, untrustworthiness, and perhaps other topics?

See the entry on plagiarism at

Bruce Charlton said...

@dearieme. I don't want you to get cocky - but as a commenter you can do no wrong, so far as I am concerned!


wrt 'plagiarism' - passing-off other people's scientific *work* as your own is, of course, dishonest - hence utterly unacceptable in science.

But some of this so-called-plagiarism is nothing more than using other peoples *words* in constructing a paper.

I came across this as a journal editor, among people who had poor English language skills -

Using other peoples unattributed words to make yourself clear is merely a venial scientific sin, not a mortal one.

a Finn said...

Are there any rules for commenting or goals to strive for?

Rules, goals, guidelines, restrictions etc. would be helpful.

An attached "because ..." to previous would make it more acceptable to people (Langer, 1989).

Bruce Charlton said...

@ a Finn. No rules, regulations, aims or objectives. I'm not a bureaucrat! The blog itself, including previous comments published, are the only predictive guide.

Bill said...

Speaking as someone who has evidently fallen afoul of the comment policy you employ, I don't see a problem with it. It's your blog, written for your purposes as an expression of what you think needs to be said.

Obviously, I don't happen to agree with any particular decision not to publish my comments, but so what? On balance, I'm sure the editorial function is improving the blog.