How the cost of effective comments moderation led a mainstream publisher to hamstring one of their most effective click-generators: without the usual hundreds of comments piling up at a rate of knots, how many people will keep on clicking through repeatedly to Bolt’s posts?
This accusation of suppressing speech online keeps on coming up (it’s a fundamental plank in the ongoing FTBullies smear campaign): the allegedly terrible awful no-good horrible “crime” of deleting comments on a blog. To which I say bah humbug pish tosh harrumph and quote a 2010 comment here:
you have a right to access the Internet, not to access my audience via my resources.
In a truly rational world, it might be possible to substantively and productively explore the pros and cons of competing positions in good faith and reach a nuanced understanding and a mutually satisfying path forward. Unfortunately the “don’t give disproportionate emphasis to sexism” side has basically been hijacked by a bunch of bad faith contrarians…
The gendered cyber harassment campaigns are rank intimidation aimed at silencing us. We have to keep on talking about it so that they do not succeed.
Without certain guidelines for acceptable content in comments the substantive arguments get buried in a flood of reactionary soundbites and frequently eliminationist rhetoric. This is not merely disturbing, it actively perpetuates partisan/ideological bias.
So here is an assortment of technical tips & tricks whereby bloggers can cut down the volume and the repetition coming from this cyberbullying cadre of keyboard jockeys, making the harassment little more than a tiny hiss of background noise instead of an overwhelming flood of spite.
aka One More Time For The Clueless! “Free speech” has never meant that individuals or corporations are obliged to provide a forum for speech they find obnoxious on their own private property.
While I applaud the sentiment of those advocating a formal bloggers’ code of conduct, I think their approach is ultimately doomed to failure.