Since comments have been closed on the blog a number of people have mailed me on the new policy. One occasional commentator has regretted the change, and hopes positive comment can be allowed again soon. I’ll see. But most are like this correspondent:
It'll be really interesting to see what happens to your blog readership with the new comments policy. My guess is it'll probably increase because the gaggle of right-wing commentators was turning off more people than they attracted.
I'd have ended up doing the same thing a lot sooner I think - you've been remarkably patient.
Some of the comments were so bad that they were kind of amusing though!
So far this week has seen the highest readership day of the year so far, and it’s the highest pro rata readership week of the year so far. It’s 70% up on last year. And comments pages were, anyway, read by less than 10% of readers over all anyway. So I suspect my correspondent may well be right.
None of which says this policy will necessarily endure: I just need a break from the rubbish that has been flowing in to get some work done. That’s the main reason for the change. But if it does change I’ll be adopting a policy more like that of Tax Justice Network where the majority of all comments are deleted. I now see the virtue in that.