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Thread: Curtailing Comments

  1. #1
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    Curtailing Comments

    I see that The Atlantic has joined the list of publications that have eliminated the readers' comments section from their web site. I understand that a private organization is free to censor itself any way it chooses, and that there is far too much trollery out there for many peoples' tastes, but I think we lose something when we capitulate to the idiots of left or right.

  2. #2
    Senior Member iris lilies's Avatar
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    I dont much care about political comments although I occasionally like to poke our idiotic opinion makers on the editorial board of the St. Louis Post Dispatch. Usually I ignore them because they are ridiculous, but occasionally so ridiculous that I cant give them a pass.

    For me, the noise to good ratio is too high in most all commentary that starts out political. It just is not worth it to me to read these sites. Maybe National Review has good online commentary, I dont know.

    I sure do miss the discussion forums of the Internet Movie Data base. Trolls reportedly killed those free wheeling discussions.

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    I would say this is more about the trolls than a political debate. I read the comments sometimes on local or state news, there are sellers of sunglasses, marketing schemes, extreme points of view that are beyond political (like threats). Just not worth it, I am willing to read most any differing opinion however I see these are not happening.

    Like this stupid stuff, causes a lot of work for admins
    http://www.newsweek.com/racist-rose-...ia-page-753063

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    Senior Member KayLR's Avatar
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    It IS a great deal of work for the admins.

    People are still free to write letters to the editor, which may or may not make print depending on space. But that way one isn't so easily able to hide behind a fake name. Most sites have user agreements, as well, that are largely not paid attention to. On our paper's website, you will be banned if you violate the agreement not to be vile, name-calling, vicious, using bad language, or targeting another person. You don't have the right to be that way. Most wouldn't do that on paper (ETA nor would they probably take the time to), but too easy to do it online.
    My therapist told me the way to achieve true inner peace is to finish what I start. So far today, I have finished two bags of M&Ms and a chocolate cake. I feel better already!

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    Senior Member iris lilies's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zoe Girl View Post
    I would say this is more about the trolls than a political debate. I read the comments sometimes on local or state news, there are sellers of sunglasses, marketing schemes, extreme points of view that are beyond political (like threats). Just not worth it, I am willing to read most any differing opinion however I see these are not happening.

    Like this stupid stuff, causes a lot of work for admins
    http://www.newsweek.com/racist-rose-...ia-page-753063
    supposedly it was the racial vitriol about the film Get Out that killed IMDB forums. That is what I heard, dont know if it is true.

    Get Out was a decent film. i saw it as a comedy but apparently not everyone else saw it that way.

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    I don't blame the Atlantic one bit. On those rare occasions when I look at a comments thread, it invariably degenerates into feces flinging that makes a troop of baboons look like an English drawing room comedy.

    The internet has allowed everyone to publish their opinions too easily. The sad truth is that the quality of public discourse would be greatly improved if people had to work much harder to be heard.

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    I don't think all comment sections degenerate it depends on the site (but moderation usually helps). Look at NYT comments, often better than the articles, but they are moderated. Now the Atlantic has some good articles of course (and free online as well if you look at them with a browser without ad-block). But the comments section there always struck me as not the sharpest tools in the shed ... and instead of being about the article were almost always derailments.
    If you want something to get done, ask a busy person. If you want them to have a nervous breakdown that is.

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    Senior Member jp1's Avatar
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    I can't blame any media site for not wanting to deal with a comments section. I'm always amazed at how quickly even innocuous articles' comment sections can turn toxic like catherine's facebook poll about the superbowl yesterday. But I do appreciate the comments on sites that expend the effort to moderate well. The NY Times seems to be the gold standard as far as that goes.

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    I'm not sure whether it's worse to be a playground for trolls or to curate comments to match the opinions and sensibilities of the editorial staff.

  10. #10
    Senior Member The Storyteller's Avatar
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    With ability to share articles to Facebook and Twitter and to say whatever one wants about them, I'm surprised anyone even bothers to comment (or read comments) on a news site.
    "There are too many books in the world to read in a single lifetime; you have to draw the line somewhere." --Diane Setterfield, The Thirteenth Tale

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