Today’s discussion appears to be on cross referencing and comments, Simon references tantek‘s query on presentation of pingbacks/trackbacks/whatever as identical to comments.

I disagree, ish.

I like having comments on my weblog, because it means that occasionally discussion happens and it means that I get feedback from people who don’t have weblogs. This harkens back to the Eliteism comments I got into so much trouble for last time, I don’t like the “If people want to comment, they will write in their weblogs and I’ll get a trackback” school of thought, because it assumes that everyone who wants to comment on an item will have an platform from which to shout. I toyed with the idea of implementing a Unified Commenting Thing like Sam‘s got, then didn’t in favour of Cross referencing. All links to other pages linked to this one become cross references – or will do, the interface isn’t done yet – which will mix all Pingbacks, Trackbacks, Internal links, and just general “For more on this see…” and maybe even referer log tracking.

Besides which, there is a difference between a comment and a response. If you’re going to do a quick “That’s cool”, or “Did you know?”, you might want to just make a quick comment. If you’re going to write a full white paper with detailed blow by blow reactions to each raised point, it is more likely that would be more interesting to the people who read your weblog as well as those who read mine. It’s your choice, but by letting you leave comments, you at least have the option.

Of course, if you don’t want comments, don’t have them 🙂