- Mar 2021
Years ago, I helped build a storytelling platform called Hi (a simplification of its original name: Hitotoki, now shuttered and archived) and one of the things I’m most proud of our team having concocted is the commenting system. We had tens of thousands of users and almost no issues with harassment. You could comment on anyone’s story and your having commented would be public — a little avatar at the bottom of the page — but the comment itself would be private. This allowed folks to reap the public validation of engagement (“Whoa! So many comments!”) while simultaneously removing any grandstanding or attacks. It wasn’t quite messaging. It wasn’t quite commenting. It felt very much like a contemporary, lighter take on email, and in being so was a joy to use. Here’s what the bottom of an entry looks like: "Commenting" on Hitotoki
I like the design and set up for this feature. Perhaps something for the IndieWeb to pick up? In some sense the implementation of Webmention-based likes, bookmarks, and facepiled mentions on my site is just this sort of design.
The anecdotal evidence that there was little harassment is a positive sign for creating such a thing.