July 6, 2010

The Blogger comments problem is sapping my strength.

I used to blog without comments. I used to like it like that:
What has been your worst blogging experience?

My brief experience with the comments function, which a couple of nasty people ruined for everybody.
Ha! How much thinner my skin was in 2004!

Since late last night, Blogger has had a problem displaying comments, and I'm being forced back into the old experience of blogging without comments. (I do see them in the email, but it's not the same when they aren't here and when the readers aren't talking to each other.)

I used to prefer writing without comments, but over the years, I've gotten so accustomed to the familiar environment of comments that writing without the prospect of comments feels like speaking out loud when there's no one else in the room. I can do it, but it doesn't feel that different from thinking.

I know you're still there. I need to overcome this absurd block. I seem to need displayed comments, but think of the people who spend years writing books with little assurance that they will be read at all. You have to find a different attitude toward writing. I was going to say that the book-writer writes more for himself, for the intrinsic reward of writing, but in fact, the book-writer needs to obsess more about who will read this. The blogger can see that people are reading and really is more free to write for the intrinsic reward. I'm so into that immediate reward that I'm greedy for more of it — in the form of displayed comments.

But the display will go up, eventually, and you will see what you and others have been writing, in this unusual context of not seeing what others are saying. In the meantime, you can display opinion now, thusly:

With this temporary failure to display comments...
I'm enjoying the refreshingly uncluttered look of things here.
I feel frustrated that others cannot see what I think.
I'm wondering what the usual commenters have to say.
Althouse feels less provocative because I can't see the provokees.

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traditionalguy said...

It's your Blog and you can cry if you want to. But what can you do?

Duncan said...

The lack of comments did make me look really closely at the comments line and particularly the phrase '0 comments'.

I noticed that the '0' really looks like an oh 'o'. Looking further you can see the tags which share the same typeface have oval ohs.

The Blogger typeface for this function reverses the tradition that zeros should be oval and ohs round.

Significant discovery.

Trooper York said...


You want to give Ritmo a heart attack?

The Crack Emcee said...

"Ha! How much thinner my skin was in 2004!"

That's growth worth celebrating.

MamaM said...

This feels like Instapundit and I don't need another Instapundit.

Doug Wright said...

Althouse is no "Instapundit" but then Instapundit is no "Althouse" either. We'll all much better for that too!

rhhardin said...

A woman's place can be taken as a place that she makes, which Derrida took as the true feminism; rather than taking on male sexual identity cards.

Say a place anticipating comments.

A guy is happy doing an essay that's the final word on a topic. He abstracts away from alternatives.

george said...

I think the fact you feel this way is one of the most commendable aspects of your character. It is one thing to sit and tell everyone what you think. It is another to listen to what they have to say in return. Even when all they have to say is "you fool, you." If only our ruling class were able to learn the lesson you have learned we would be all the better for it.

It is very rare that I go a day looking at my favorite blogs where I don't see something so true and so well phrased by one of the commenters that it gives me cause to reflect on how inferior my own efforts are while at the same time giving me hope that there are better men than I still out there fighting for the same things I believe in. They put in great effort to write something beautiful that only a handful of people will see or understand.

This is worth quite a lot in my estimation.