Over the past years New Mandala has benefited from the over 11,000 comments hosted on the site. Many of these contributions have opened up important new areas for debate and discussion. We have always appreciated the time and effort that so many readers devote to the task of commenting.

In the hope of further improving New Mandala and its value as a forum for understanding mainland Southeast Asia we have decided to experiment with a different approach to comments for the next few weeks.

During this time, we will only be publishing high-quality comments that make original contributions to discussion. There will, of course, remain space for pithy, humorous, eccentric and cheeky input. Short and sweet will usually trump long and involved. Repetitive ranting, unimaginative point-scoring and idle abuse will not be entertained.

And exceptional comments that are submitted to New Mandala will be considered as stand-alone guest posts. The goal is to cultivate a style that is somewhat more formal, better considered and highly readable.

Based on past experience, comments which carry a real name will generally be more likely to satisfy our evolving criteria.

Thank you for your patience as this new system is trialled over the coming weeks. We hope that our large and growing readership finds it a beneficial change.