We all know there was an update etc and sadly some fellow bht'ers lost out. However I have ,being honest,still been blasting away and seen only upward movement on anything I blast.I do seek high pr sites and manually comment on them(approval needed).I use social bookmarking sites like IMautomator,I also use AMR.I am in many cases blasting directly at the main site. The domains are usually over 6months old and I think this is the key.I would be VERY wary of blasting a new site now,in fact I wouldn't.If it got sandboxed,yes I would. I have wordpress sites so I get the usual 100+ spam a day but I simply delete it all. Anyway I think comments still have something,devalued,sure,but not dead. I am not shy at blasting either.I think alot of issues come with people blasting 50k of links and desperately trying to ping every link,to me this is comment suicide.I have seen upward movement the next day but little links showing.My view is it's probably like reading a book for google,the links are seen (read) but it's not really noted,however if you ping it's like a full colour picture on the next page and gets alot of attention. I never use any tool by google such as google webmaster etc.I use independant tools only but I'm not fussed about getting every link found,in fact I wouldn't want that because if you have say 50k links,over time they get archived and you've lost a link.Let the links be found naturally and it evens out alot better. Anyway folks that my 2c's worth,comments might be devalued but they are still worth the effort.