Monday, April 22, 2013

Anonymous Comments

I feel that allowing anonymous comments is a great privilege of the Internet. The concept that a person can write something without having to stand behind it is one of the nice things about this day and age. I feel this might allow people to be whistle blowers or point out other faults without fear of retribution. However, I don't really have much retribution for anyone. Seriously, if I don't answer your phone call or email it is because I don't answer anyone's phone calls or emails. (My fault, I know.)

The point being, sometimes these comments get downright rude! Someone even used the F word recently in my comments! Can you imagine? I was flabbergasted!

So it happened that I was having a discussion (in real life) recently with a friend and he said something close to, 'you have a real hater that comments on your blog!' I laughed a little and told him my thoughts on the matter. To him the concept of anonymous comments is ridiculous. He is not alone. My sister moderates comments because she had enough negative ones. Seth Godin, probably the world's most popular blogger, does not even allow comments on his bog. Why deal with the haters?

I deal with the haters because I care. Someone is expressing something because they want to express it and I suppose that in some way I am able to help them with those emotions. Emotions can be powerful things and most people do not handle them well. If expressing those feelings anonymously helps that person deal with whatever emotions I helped elicit, then great, I just helped someone.

However, when people start using the F word, that's not appropriate. I have not moderated comments for nearly 50 months, the whole life of this blog. I wanted to hear all of the raw emotions and thoughts of my readers. (Plus, more comments help my Google search rankings.) However, I don't really need to hear what anonymous haters have to say. If people really want to comment they are welcome to sign in with one of a slew of accounts and leave their name. Sure he or she could come us with a fake name, but the person would likely use the same fake name for every comment. I don't know. Maybe I should not even allow comments? Seriously, most of the people that comment have my phone number or email address so that we can discuss a topic directly.

What do you think? Vote over on the right please. Alternatively you could comment, although, anonymous comments that berate me basically prove the point.

9 comments:

  1. I don't want you to continue allowing anonymous but only because it bothers me. On the other hand, it is your blog so if you think the possible benefits out-weigh the rudeness, by all means, continue to allow them but I haven't seen a decent anonymous comment yet.

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  2. If Lane has not seen a decent anonymous comment yet, then he/she should revisit the anonymous comments because there really are some that are quite positive!

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  3. I guess you will now say that I confused decent for positive. Oh, well. Was going to say if you don't like them you can "F" off, but that would "bother" you. :)

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  4. Forgive my exaggeration. I haven't gone through all the of the comments but there have been a string of comments that I thought were pretty nasty recently. Strong language doesn't bother me but I don't like when people are unkind to somebody as nice as Isaiah.

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  5. I don't like using anonymous, but I have often done it because I can't seem to figure out how to use any of the other options. So often I have written my comments 3-4 times as I try the different options only to have it erase my entire comment & tell me I'm not registered. I am not the one making the negative comments, in fact many of my comments have been very positive. So if someone wants to help the technologically challenged Mom.... thanks!

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