Joel has a post on the worthlessness of comments on blogs!!!!!!!! Endorsing the position of Dave Winer whose view is, if you have a point to make, start up your own blog.
Joel (and Dave):
"...to the extent that comments interfere with the natural expression of the unedited voice of an individual, comments may act to make something not a blog.... The cool thing about blogs is that while they may be quiet, and it may be hard to find what you're looking for, at least you can say what you think without being shouted down. This makes it possible for unpopular ideas to be expressed. And if you know history, the most important ideas often are the unpopular ones.... That's what's important about blogs, not that people can comment on your ideas. As long as they can start their own blog, there will be no shortage of places to comment."
The important thing to notice here is that Dave does not see blog comments as productive to the free exchange of ideas. They are a part of the problem, not the solution. You don't have a right to post your thoughts at the bottom of someone else's thoughts. That's not freedom of expression, that's an infringement on their freedom of expression. Get your own space, write compelling things, and if your ideas are smart, they'll be linked to, and Google will notice, and you'll move up in PageRank, and you'll have influence and your ideas will have power.Wow.
So Joel and Dave don't get people writing in about the decline of hip-hop??????!!!!!!!!! They don't think comments on the decline of hip-hop are a million times more interesting than whatever it was they had to say in their original post??????!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I think there is some sort of Nietzschean Will-to-Power behind the apparently easygoing facade of Messrs Spolsky and Winer. The implication is, Look, you moron, I wrote my post, if you have anything worth saying PageRank will inform me of the fact through the wisdom of crowds, don't rain on my parade. In other words
First come I: my name is Jowett
There's no knowledge but I know it
If I don't know it it isn't knowledge
I am Master of this College