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February 14, 2020 - 1:29pm

Time to reiterate The Batavian's comment policy

posted by Howard B. Owens in thebatavian.

It seems like a good idea to reiterate our comment policy, especially since some things might not be apparent since we now use Facebook's comment plug-in to manage comments: 

  • Even with Facebook registration, we still require real names. If we see a name we suspect is fictitious, we will check it against public databases. With Facebook, however, we also can now look at your profile. Fake accounts are usually easy to spot. We ban people from making comments with names we do not believe are the person's true identity. Interestingly, the way it works with Facebook, the person doesn't even appear to know they've been banned. I can still see their comments in our comment moderation tool even though the comments are not appearing on the website.
  • Attacks on public officials are a special case. The higher up in office, and the less directly connected to our local community, the more leeway is allowed, but name-calling and personal attacks rarely illuminate or add to a worthwhile discussion. We reserve the right in our sole judgment to hide comments that we find offensive or inappropriate.
  • Racism is never tolerated. 
  • We still do not allow personal insults. Some insults are obvious, others are more subtle, and we don't always catch them. Any comment we suspect of containing a personal insult, we hide. Only the person who made the comment and their Facebook-connected friends will see the comment. 
  • We don't allow profanity.  
  • We expect civil discourse and obvious trolls get their comments hidden and are subject to potential bans.
  • Comments that stray off topic are also subject to being hidden.

No comment is ever hidden because of the content of the comment. All opinions are welcome so long as the comments are within our guidelines.

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