In my post on Openness in HE but not Elsewhere I suggested that requiring users to agree to complex terms and conditions in order to respond to (and, even worse, view) discussions on government policies was counter-productive. A post entitled It’s not a blog if… on the JISC Access Management Team blog is in agreement with these sentiments.

Mark Williams describes another barrier to the use of blogs for effective dialogue. In his post he complains about his “wasted effort on writing replies on a couple of blogs this week only to find that after a suitable period for much needed moderation (after all IT forums are hardly the place to endorse male vitality products) the sites are clearly not putting any replies / comments up“. Mark feels that “If a an opinion piece doesn’t have scope for comments then that’s what it is – a magazine style opinion piece not a blog“.

I would agree with that. Yes, there may be a cost in deleting inappropriate comments, but this need not be onerous, and I think it is worth spending some effort in allowing users to give their thoughts and comments.