Trolls

November 9, 2011 at 3:14 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 5 Comments

While moderating comments, I ran across my first abusive comment and paused before authorizing it.  I thought I would check in with my readers and let you all weigh in on this matter of protocol.

The post (“Fat Head”) is one from the past that attracts readers who tend to be of a different stripe than my regular crowd.  Almost universally they hate the post and want to weigh in on it.  It’s unlikely any of them come back to follow the comment thread.  It’s my guess that most of them don’t even read the entire post, much less the comments of the irate readers who came before them.

One could say that it probably doesn’t matter one way or the other whether I approve a comment or not, if nobody will notice or care.  The question only really comes up in my mind because I feel some sense of obligation that my site reflect some sort of journalistic reality.

Anyway, what do you think?  Approve everything?  Blast anything that annoys me?  Remove the entire post so I stop hearing from that segment of… humanity?

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5 Comments »

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  1. I remember that post, and commented on it, although I wasn’t one of the people who hated it. I’m not sure what I would do in your shoes. I rarely get abusive comments on my own blog, but recently someone did comment and made completely false claims that my husband uses drugs and was drinking and driving. I would have taken it down, but other commenters already replied to that comment, and I decided to leave it, but it left me feeling unsettled and hurt for days. Taking it down wouldn’t have cured those feelings.
    I think you wrote a good review of the movie and the dialogue is likely to continue for as long as people are searching for it. If it makes you uncomfortable to have unfriendly visitors to your blog, drawn specifically by that post, you might want to take it down. Whoever did leave the comment might check back for a response, so by not publishing it, you’re not feeding a troll.

  2. I have occasionally allowed a troll-like comment to go through, if only so I could give it right back to them. But, usually, I delete these kinds of comments. They are not interested in dialogue, often their posts are attacking the person rather than the issue…and I don’t like giving them an audience on my blog. My motto is “be kind” … if they can’t manage that, they get deleted.

  3. I have the same “journalistic compulsion” to accept every comment. My general rule of thumb is to accept all comments unless they are abusive or objectively false. That is not an easy line to tell, obviously, but I do my best.

  4. I delete comments that are deliberately attacking/provoking me. It’s my blog, and troll comments upset me– so I feel like I’m “allowed” to get rid of them if it’ll make me feel better. It usually does. (I actually had to close comments on one old review post, though, because basically EVERY comment I got was trollish in some way, which was seriously irritating.)

    Anyway, even big name blogs like BoingBoing and Jezebel don’t allow abusive/degrading/etc. comments, so deleting troll comments isn’t that big of a deal in the blog world, I think. If someone disagrees with something you wrote, they can say it in a non-abusive way or not at all, and I don’t think there’s anything wrong with blocking them if they’re trolling you.

  5. […] Both Eyes Book Blog by Both Eyes Book – “Trolls“ […]


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