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(Good) Philosophical arguments are essentially back and forth exchanges of long, coherent and self-sufficient arguments. Thus, I think the character limit on comments is not enough for proper responses to answers and this feature should be allowed if one is to explain exactly how the answer has failed to address the question/is wrong/is incoherent/etc.

Furthermore, since debates should be visible and since a response to an answer may be just as interesting as the answer itself people should be encouraged to view them as one, perhaps we could also get larger fonts and/or bolder typefaces for comments. Perhaps up-votes on comments could enhance visibility accordingly.

I feel that these two features will be especially forthcoming in a philosophy board.

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  • 5
    To add to Shog9's answer: if a discussion in comments between a couple of users produces something particularly fruitful and relevant, you should strongly consider promoting it to an answer and deleting the now-obsolete comments. We still want the primary focus to be on the answers, even if the comment threads can be more productive here than on SE sites. – Cody Gray Jun 9 '11 at 5:58
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If a good discussion board is necessary to answer a question, then SE is a poor choice of a tool. This system is designed to discourage extended discussion, with the goal of giving readers a ready answer for their question. Topics - questions - are modelled more on Wikipedia than on USENET in this regard.

Comments are... At best, a necessary evil: it's helpful to have quick discussions if the end result is a better answer.

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