This is the story that Matt just posted at Metsblog.com
Earlier this week, I was forced to temporarily shut down the comment section on MetsBlog.com.
According to traffic history and old and recent surveys, less and less people are reading my blog’s comment section, and more and more people feel the current level of discourse reflects poorly on the overall blog.
The thing is, during much of the first four years of MetsBlog.com, long before my affiliation with SNY, and long before site-wide sponsors, the comment section had been a place where Mets fans would respond to me and my work with intelligent, relevant statements and criticism about what had been written in that specific post. I enjoyed the feedback, as it was respectful and thoughtful, and I often received compliments from other readers and other blogs about the insight people gained from peeking in on this section of the MetsBlog.
In the last year, however, the comment section has changed in to a place where only a small, inclusive group of 30 or so readers mostly speak to and among themselves, often creating their own discussion, separate from the topic at hand. In other words, the comment section has become a message board. Of course, there is nothing wrong with message boards, but they are different from a blog. They are two totally different forms of communication, and serve different purposes.
As a result, old school, original readers of MetsBlog.com, who were once very engaged years ago, eventually turned away from the comment section, only reading what I write to the main page, which is a shame.
So, I am now working to create a parallel space on MetsBlog.com that can serve as a more relaxed, open environment for people to vent, discuss topics and exchange ideas among themselves, while returning the official comments section to an special location where a trusted group of readers can respond to the topic at hand.
I believe such a switch back to the way things were will help realign the very-public comment section with my blog’s overall brand, while also creating a new location for people to have open and honest discussion about the team we all love.
Thank you for understanding, and for your patience as I work to make these necessary adjustments,