Thanks to all of you who take the time to contribute to Transbay Blog by offering your comments and extending the discussion past the posts. I have received a few emails from readers asking about why the blog comments are moderated, so I thought it might be useful to post just a few notes about this:
1. For the time being, comments are moderated; that is, they require approval before being posted. I am not doing this because I want to moderate the conversation. Far from it — in fact, I would prefer that the conversation be completely free and unmoderated. If a comment is not spam and includes a valid email address, I will automatically approve it to be posted. The only reason why I am moderating comments for the time being is that many spam comments make their way through the filter. Without moderation, these spam comments would be posted directly on the blog, and I would have to delete them after the fact. Some of these spam comments are sufficiently lucid so as to be downright offensive. Until this problem is resolved, I will continue to moderate comments.
2. There also been a problem with legitimate comments being marked as spam, or not being registered at all. I greatly appreciate the contribution readers make to the website by commenting — so I apologize if your comment is lost because of this, but it is beyond my control. I am careful to monitor at least those comments that are incorrectly blocked by the filter, so as to minimize the loss of comments that contribute to the discussion.
3. I am in the process of closing down commenting on old posts, so that the discussion is streamlined onto more current posts. Commenting will be open for posts for a few weeks after the post is published. After a few weeks, commenting on a post will be closed unless discussion is still active. Even after commenting is closed, all the comments posted in those first few weeks will remain for all to read.
4. Although I would like to be able to do so, I very often do not have time to answer or respond to every question or remark that is posed in the comments. Readers are encouraged to jump into the conversation to answer questions posed by other readers.