Today I put up an editorial from another newspaper, the Echo Press in Alexandria, about its online comment section.
I also removed several posts from a thread that had devolved into a fight on the Globe site. (I am one of several people who serve as moderators there when such things come up.)
That said, this is a rare occurrance for the Globe’s comment section. We have had only one troll in the past year or so since we started allowing comments, and apart from the activities of that one person (who unfortunately successfully started many fights), we have remarkably few incidences of nastiness.
I am proud of our commenters.
I’ve been monitoring messageboards of various types online for about 10 years, and although I generally do not monitor our comments unless a complaint is made, I am reasonably familiar with our commenters.
I think they are better, and their comments are better, than those at the other sites I moderated before.
Although there are some very pointed comments made (sometimes at the Globe and occasionally at me, too) they usually don’t contain cursing and they usually aren’t directed at other posters or private citizens.
Our commenters mostly follow the rules.
People don’t realize how good our commenters are compared to commenters at other sites. Have you looked at YouTube lately? How about news articles posted in other places?
Our commenters aren’t perfect (who is?) but they are certainly better than most commenters out there.
And I’d be happy to sit down in a coffeeshop and chat with them, if they were interested.
Give me a ring at the Globe with feedback if you like, at 376-9711, or you can email me at email@example.com. Or heck, just comment on this post.