While playing around with the Stack Overflow data-dump, I was getting a feel for the schema and data by looking at my own posts and comments, and I happened coincidentally to notice my comment on this answer which turns out to have been popular. However, I had no idea until I stumbled upon it in the dump.

Shouldn't the profile page be a way to find everything that a given user has posted, be it a question, answer, or comment? I recognize that comments are definitely not the primary focus, and I wouldn't want to encourage commenting just for the sake of getting voted up (the comment in question was a drive-by comment that I never gave a second thought to until now). However, it would be nice to have a record of my past comments, or to be able to view comments of other users at a glance.

I think, in particular, the comments would be most valuable (or detrimental) to those using Stack Overflow et al as a resume since comments tend to illustrate a user's temperament and civility when dealing with others much more so that questions and answers which are often more carefully worded and edited.

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2 Answers

You pretty much answered the question yourself:

  • Comments are lightweight; even as far as "they shouldn't contain information that you care about to persist".
  • Comment voting even more so -- even though comments often get their votes for being witty, saying something funny, or including the words "freehand circles", the purpose of comment votes is to help a reader quickly identify those comments that are most relevant.
  • The information is in the data dump, so if you want to revisit your comments, it's easy to do (of course I have done so myself, only to find this) -- but that's what Jeff calls "information pornography".


  • at least the most recent comments are shown on the profile page (in the activity tab).
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+1 for "freehand circles." –  John Rudy Feb 16 '10 at 14:43
@State: That comment obviously requires an upvote from me. –  balpha Feb 16 '10 at 14:47
I'd at least like to know when I've posted a comment that has been received a lot of comment votes... –  Kip Feb 16 '10 at 16:32
So maybe seeing comment voting has negatives, but is there anything wrong with just a list of all your comments? Like I said, I think there's value in seeing if a prospective hire plays well with others. And since that data is already out there, why make it hard to find? (Knowing your comments are easily read might actually encourage civility.) –  Rob Van Dam Feb 16 '10 at 17:25
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I am able to see all my comments in activity tab's comment section . enter image description here

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