Are there any blog commenting systems made for different kinds of conversations? E.g. "I enjoyed this." vs. "Could you clarify?" vs. "Here's an essay on why you're wrong..."

I feel like all systems are just a variation on: "here's a text box, and here's everything anyone has entered into it in relation to this post." (Decentralized version only adds: "here's what people said elsewhere.")

Social media has shown the need for different kinds of interactions around content online. But "likes" are cheap and poisonous, chat isn't connected to content, and all platforms still stop at: "here's all the replies" 🤷

Show thread

@matt what about Shadowbanning ? What does that say about the concept of "interacting via social media "


Tangentially related: I think the root problem with social media is that is does not reflect human social interactions. We have different groups of friends for different activities and none of us announce things to the entire world.

Except, now we do. Now all our friends are involved in all our activities which isn't normal. And now we announce all sorts of stupid things to the public which we never had the capability to do before. And we have to deal with much larger groups of people than we can handle.

Social media invents wholly unnatural human relationships which is why it goes haywire most of the time.

I expand more on these ideas here if you're interested (audio and text):

@jonw 100% agree. I'm designing a blog commenting system, and this is exactly the sort of point I'm getting at. From blog comments to social media, most social software seems to take a robotic, one-size-fits-all view on human interaction. I think very basic design decisions give us all the harmful effects we see.

This was a great read, thanks for sharing. I'll definitely be keeping it in mind.


I'm all ears for a new system. I agree the current one is broken.

Thanks, I'm glad you liked the post :)

@jonw Yep, it'll be called @remark_as, if you want to keep up with it.

Subscribed to your Substack site too. Also enjoyed your article about writing on Medium.

@matt @remark_as


Yeah...Medium...sheesh...there's a weird place. Ostensibly it seems to make sense, but when I lived it - daily - for a while, it became prety obvious to me that the whole model is very broken.

But I will give Medim credit for showing me that I can write a LOT more than I was. I was writing once a month, sometimes not even that much. Now I'm hitting at least two a week, sometimes more.

Except for this week because I am off this week, but I will be back Monday :)

@matt @jonw
It's very interesting.
Even though I sometimes am guilty of doing it myself (I may use favorite to say that i like it) I do my best to go deeper and comment constructively.

Sometimes I don't know what to write - I may leave it for a while and keep the post somewhere to get back to it even though the post moved me.

I was fed up of this useless likes on FB and I kinda begin to feel the same on LinkedIn.
We'll see if I stay or not.
Maybe I need to use it differently.

@jonw @matt your linked post seems obvious--now that you explained it to me. Insightful. Thanks.

@OldYogre @matt

Thank you. Now...if we could just FIX the problem, lol.

@jonw @matt
I agree. It is like if everything was a bit blurred in the open.
I'm learning to put some boundaries.
It's a working progress...

@matt I remember talking about it at least twice. Likes can be good for conveying an agreement, acknowledgement or thanks.

But then, back in the days when there was only LiveJournal, we managed to have long conversations in the comments. It was much more social than Twitter. It was much better fit to make new friends.

Also emails. :) I loved it. It's a shame it's now completely gone to make way to messengers. Which are good, but...

@SeventhMagpie Absolutely! This is kind of what I'm getting at, all the different ways commenting can be used. I want to make something that fits each situation: a way to say "thanks" / acknowledge a post, a way to start a large conversation, a way to have a private one (maybe literally using email!).

@matt I really like the idea of being able to separate different kinds of conversations in commenting systems; I'm glad you brought it up. Merely being able to e.g. sort by comment length or presence of links would be helpful.

In particular I've often wished I could see a random selection of comments (either purely random or after passing a customized filter I could set, e.g. >100 words) instead of having to sort by some characteristic or having to wade through entire threads.

@matt maybe there could be a way of tagging your reply into one of these types of conscious intentions of trying to make conversations? something like green text for "I enjoyed this", blue for "could you clarify?", red for "here's an essay on why you're wrong". I know it would look awful but that's the best idea off the top of my head right now

Sign in to participate in the conversation
Writing Exchange

The social network of the future: No ads, no corporate surveillance, ethical design, and decentralization! Own your data with Mastodon!