I'm almost 100 percent sure that scripting.com was the first blog to have comments. And I'm equally sure that it was the first to have its comments flame out. The flameout was a good thing, although it didn't feel like it at the time, because it created the first wave of blogs. And when their comments flamed out, there were subsequent waves of new blogs.
Once the blogosphere had grown sufficiently that the central role scripting.com played was largely forgotten, I brought comments back. I've been mostly satisfied with them, but certain subjects evoke predictable and futile "arguments" in response and unless moderation is applied, they will spiral into a flamy back and forth that you can find in any of thousands of different places in the blogosphere. So I moderate according to a few basic guidelines.
4. When moderating I'm always mindful of whether the comment needs to be tacked onto my post or if it would do better as a post of its own on the author's blog. I think a lot of people post comments just to get attention. If I get the idea that's what's going on, I don't approve the comment. That's a misuse of the comments, and disrespectful of the community, and of the blog's author.
I know some people think that blogs are conversations, but I don't. I think they're publications. And I think the role of comments is to add value to the posts. If you want to rebut a post, then you can create your own blog and post your rebuttal there.
I've always felt this way about what blogs are, and in a similar way I feel Twitter is not a conversational medium. it is even more inappropriate to try to converse there because of the 140-character limit.