The BMJ have an active system for readers to comment on articles published in their online publications. But a recent report covered here in the Scholarly Kitchen suggests that authors are not engaging in the process. The BMJ report: “Adequacy of authors’ replies to criticism raised in electronic letters to the editor: cohort study” suggests that many authors do not reply to the comments posted about their articles and that even when they do the reader is not satisfied with the result.
A couple of the SAGE journals have expressed interest in adding this feature but it would be interesting to hear from readers whether they like the feature or would use it either as a reader or an author. I wonder if the scholarly communication process is quite ready yet for an online public debate.