UNMEDIA passed its second birthday this March. Back in September '02, I asked my three readers to vote on whether I should add comments to UNMEDIA. I also debated adding a counter to the site as well, and decided against it. Overall, the experiment was a success, for a while - there were many great discussions and I met a number of other bloggers and commentators through my comment threads whom I probably would not have otherwise.
However, recently I just don't have time to participate in my own threads. And most of the people I enjoy debating with - who operate from the basic position of "benefit of the doubt" towards my opinions - are also too busy (and given my own lack of activity, have probably felt there was little return in doing so). I have a PhD dissertation and research to work on, and a daughter who is now over 2 years old. Blogging is enough of a rare luxury, and what fraction of free time online I might have is IMHO better spent at Scoop community sites like Tacitus or Daily Kos or at traditional web forums that I've been a member of for years, predating my blog.
To be honest, comments are no longer worth having on this blog. Whatever few comments I get are dominated by the same people, most of whom are intent on scoring cheap points at my expense or proving to their LGF clique how enlightened they are to vanquish an anti-semitic idiotarian in debate. The final straw was being lectured about my "responsibilities" of some supposed "blog etiquette" by one such, which immediately made me recall Steven Den Beste's own thoughts on why he closed his Clueless Forum down.
It goes back to the basic question - why do I blog? It's because I like to write. And I do like to have debate and dialouge, but only with those people who are serious about the honest flow of ideas rather than spouting polemic and stereotype. My writing on this blog is not a job, it is not a responsibility to anyone save myself. And I have every right to choose honorable people with whom to debate rather than subject myself to the assaults of the gutter trash who infest the Internet's every niche.
I've now got a cool GMail account and encourage all of you regular readers, and dear blog-friends, to use. I also will be using the Trackback feature more often and try to focus on more cross-blog conversations rather than comment-thread discussions. But it's time to join the serene ranks of SDB, Jim Henley, Glenn Reynolds, and Brian Tiemann, and let my blog be all about me once again.
Here's a comment thread for you to tell me how dumb/smart I am, one last time :)
addendum: I will be keeping comments enabled on posts linked from my sidebar, however. That should keep some of teh best discussions we have had accessible. Email me if you want me to add a specific post there.