Megan’s new comment policy is interesting, but I’m not really sure how successful this sort of thing is likely to be. While endless nitpicking of everything one says is one of the persistent irritations of the blogging life (and trust me, it is), in some respects I think that critical attitude is essential to both the nature and the appeal of the medium. Exposing one’s ideas and opinions in a public medium like this can be a useful way of testing them and seeing if they stand up to scrutiny and challenge, and having to answer questions forces one to refine and amend those ideas to make them either more accurate or more persuasive, depending on the purpose of putting them out there in the first place. Banning criticism if it doesn’t come with independent added value seems like it would discourage a lot of the most interesting comments one is likely to get, since those who think the deepest thoughts often live the least interesting lives (or so I would like to think, anyway). And besides, if people can’t pick apart one’s ideas in comments, they can always link to them in posts on their own blogs and say whatever they damn well please. So, I remain skeptical that this policy is likely to help Megan in the long run, though I’m not always sure what exactly she wants out of her blog, so maybe she’ll find the new situation more congenial. From my perspective, it’s hard to say.
Anyway, comment policies aside, Megan still gets most things exactly right.