Felix Salmon riffs on the possibilities of online annotations:
“… if this takes off, it could be a significant evolution in the way that we talk about web content. Right now, for instance, if I want to link to something somebody said on a web page, I’ll normally just end up linking from Twitter to an undifferentiated page, rather than to the specific thing being said. And more generally, the conversation around things like blog posts tends to happen mostly on Twitter and Facebook, where it’s easy to miss and almost impossible to archive.”
He articulates a problem many of us face. If comments / annotations worked properly, each of us would be able to comment on individual sections and the whole story — and the interface would make comments intuitive, easy, open, shareable, and customizable. You’d also be able to store comments in your own public or private archive, and archives could be united into a super archive that’s searchable. You could remix all this material into different types of content.
This will happen. The maturation of comments will eventually lead us to a space or a thing or a moment where the right way to do this will be clear.