On comments and commenting

Andrew Sullivan

Once again I am receiving emails from loyal readers who are sick of rubbish comments from trolls.

Andrew Sullivan, who doesn’t have comments, comments:

Dan O’Connor blasts what blog comment sections have become:

It is time, I think, for us to accept that disabling or deleting idiot comments is no more anti-democratic or elitist than refusing to engage with a person harrassing you on the street. Just because everyone is allowed to have their say, it does not follow that the bilge they say is worth listening to. I love the internet. I love social media. And the only way we will save them from themselves is by accepting that, more often than not, comments are rubbish.

Gawker is implementing a new comment system to deal with the problem. Recent Dish on a wildly successful comment section here. We’re sticking with posting the best and most informative of your emails. For the Dish, reader input plays a key role in airing debates and discovering facts from readers with deep knowledge of the subjects at hand. There is a way, in other words, to create a web space where readers add and don’t detract from the experience.

It’s called editing.

My own preference is to have a free reign with comments, but smack down outrageously racist, misogynistic or hateful comments. I have a firm belief that my “army’ will deal with any silliness. I don’t want a heavily moderated and sanitised comments section like Red Alert. I enjoy comments from Kosh now he is well trained, less so from Phil who seems untrainable and still posts tl;dr comments.

Personal unfounded attacks on me are dealt with swiftly and permanently with no recourse.

However I think that Dan O’Connor as quoted above does have a valid point.

Is it time for me to start doing this too, or do I need some volunteer moderators to deal with the more foolish of trolls?


Do you want:

  • Ad-free access?
  • Access to our very popular daily crossword?
  • Access to daily sudoku?
  • Access to Incite Politics magazine articles?
  • Access to podcasts?
  • Access to political polls?

Our subscribers’ financial support is the reason why we have been able to offer our latest service; Audio blogs. 

Click Here  to support us and watch the number of services grow.

As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story. When he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet. Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet and, as a result, he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist who takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him, you can’t ignore him.

40%