April 20, 2007

KATHY SIERRA ON NPR ON BLOG COMMENTS AND CIVILITY: Makes me glad I don't have comments. Especially this: "Jacquelyn Schlesier is a full-time moderator for Chowhound, a food discussion Web site. She says keeping things civil is a lot of work. She spends as many as 12 hours a day reading through posts and deleting anything offensive, abusive or off-topic. It's a food blog. How bad can things get? Really bad, Schlesier says, especially with some topics."

People just tend to get nasty on the Web; the subject at hand, whatever it happens to be, isn't so much a provocation as an opportunity.

Also, some wise thoughts on comment moderation by Teresa Nielsen Hayden, including this indisputable truth: "Furthermore, the kind of jerks who post comments that need to be deleted will infallibly cry 'censorship!' when it happens. . . . Anonymous nastiness is easy to write, and will always find an appreciative audience. I don’t care. It’s not a manifestation of the free and open discourse of the internet; it’s a thing that destroys that discourse." Read the whole thing.