For me, it often depends on how much I'm interested in the comic. Sometimes I read them for extra insight into the creator's thoughts, but other times I skip them, especially if I don't find the particular page I'm reading that interesting. When I'm really into it, I'll try to read the comment section on every page, hoping to see other people's thoughts as well as any replies the creator makes.
It depends heavily on the author. Some, I never read the comments for - people who just use it as a box to remind you about their merch, please like share and subscribe, follow me on tumblr/twitter/facebook/google+/myspace/aol. That's just obnoxious. Or the one guy who uses the author notes as a place to vent about minor life problems, mostly health paranoia. That's just pointless, nobody wants to hear about how your back still hurts and your great-aunt's dog's cancer is coming back and you've been procrastinating on your tax paperwork.
On the other hand, there's a few comics I read that are in "re-runs", where the author commentary is the only new thing about them. Those, I always read the author notes.
For the most part, though, I glance at them, and if they grab my interest I'll read the whole thing, but I rarely do. Maybe 10% of the time, if I had to put a number on it.
I will, however, dig through notes and even comments if I'm trying to see why a comic stopped updating. There's a few I've found that had just moved, but did not bother to post anything saying so to the RSS feed. But usually it's "it's on hiatus, author said on twitter they had ____ to do" or "yup, nobody's heard anything in two years, probably not going to update again".
I know people read mine. I read the ones from comics I follow too.
Most of my comments are referencing previous scenes, since it is over 5 years old, or talking about minor edits. A lot of times people comment and talk about the Author note rather than the comic page itself. What i wonder though is do people who comment want the author to reply or not? Sometimes I'm unclear if they want to talk to other readers about a thing or wanted info from me. When I don't know I comment "it is a mystery" and hope they get the ghost reference.
I mean I definitely read yours! And I know quite a few people read mine, at least when the comic page is newly updated. Otherwise, I think it's the way a lot of people have said, where they mostly read the author comments unless they're catching up through an archive. I tend to read author comments, unless the comment is always the same links to other websites, then I stop bothering.
At this point, between the links to previous comics, news updates on the comic and related projects of mine, occasional discussion questions, and the ongoing transcription for visually impaired readers, the author comments are like half the fun at this point.
I read them inconsistently. When I'm really curious about what the author has to say about a particular page, or the comic overall, I'll be checking, but I binge a lot, so comments are accidentally or neglectfully skipped over, often...
If I'm actually consistently checking the comic each update, I'll be a lot better about reading the comments thoroughly.
I try to keep my own artist-comments short or nonexistent in hopes that the page speaks for itself, and to keep the comic binge-able for folks like me who like to stay immersed in the story, but if I actually feel I have something to say, you can expect long rambling. Heh.
Can't answer for anyone, but... I do. In a lot of cases, I'm wondering what the author was thinking when they posted the strip. I also use Author comments to either explain what's happening, or straight-up narrate with the page (For example: STAR☆EATER has many chapters/series where one would enjoy the page more, if they read the comment. Or... they could just enjoy the wordless pictures...)
Also, it's a little creepy when there's no comments, or copy/pasted messages... at least imo...
Let me See, Liberty, Let me Free
(Sorry, I haven't programmed for a long time...)
Usually I read them (or at the very least take a glance at them).
When writing my comic's annotations, my personal "role model" are those of Irregular Webcomic!: They often go into quite interesting fun fact tangents, and provide links for further reading.
Yes, I think links are important for grabbing the readership's attention. Not just to aforementioned "further reading" recommendations, but also for crosslinking to prior pages, for jogging the readers' memory concerning the comic's continuity. (And sometimes also to music that may go well with the respective page.)
Another way I like to compare author comments to is a DVD commentary with interesting background info.
just about all of my comments are typed up as I say them in my head in the Adam West Batman voice over voice, so I tend to make them cheesy as I explain what's going on or bring up info maybe unknown or forgotten. Then there's times when I add info on what's going on with the site and comic but I try to keep them short and light hearted for people who read them. I tend to check them out on comics that I read.
I always read them. I write them if I need to add something to what the Professor has wrote, and judging by comments, most people read them.
Mouse-overs are a different story. We only use them to insert bad puns.
If I'm happening to read the comic in question update-to-update, then yes: I do look out for both author's note and mouseover punchline.
- Several authors continue the page's punchline/jokes further in author notes.
- Some authors do give interesting in-context background/world information about the page, or real world things that the page references to.
- Sometimes you might find them care enough to point to earlier relevant pages that relate to the events on current page (in case they're very far back).
- Another uncommon kind was ones that give technical information of the page (usually drawing/processing technique), but only interesting for art-intensive comics.
- Some authors use it for showcasing fanarts received from readers since the last update, which can be pretty interesting.
- Some authors use it as a prompt for discussion.
- Most authors use it for warning about an upcoming planned update delay or hiatus.
The type of author comment that I usually ignore is the kind that are just copy/pasted links to author's social networks or patronage platform. (You know, there is a navigation bar for that)
However, if I'm catching up with the comic in bulk, I would only glance over the author notes (or ignore them entirely) because doing so would interrupt my reading flow.