The Online Photographer

Check out our new site at!

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Bad Apples

I'm afraid I've had to go back to allowing comments only from registered users. A few people (possibly only one, but if so he kept busy) were routinely posting abusive comments and I just got tired of reading them. (Yes, I suppose that means the terrorists have won.) To everybody else, sorry for the inconvenience.


Featured Comment by Bas Scheffers: As a tip for those signing up, after saving the first page where you enter a name and password, just close the window without creating a blog; your account has been created and can be used to post here.

Featured Comment by David A. Goldfarb: One of the main attractions of this space is that it's well edited. I thought the admission of comments from unregistered users was a step in the wrong direction, and I'm glad to see the return of more careful editing.

Mike replies: Actually, David, the editing of comments is one of the shortcomings of Blogger in my opinion. I am not informed of commenters' email addresses, so I can't respond to queries, seek clarifications, or ask permission to make changes, and I have no way to edit the comments themselves except by copying them and reposting them under my own name, which is a ponderous and time-consuming workaround. We regularly get intelligent, thoughtful, and informative comments (including some from you!); however we also get poorly written, combative, or gratuitous ones. Sometimes I just have no idea what the point of the comment is. Some of those I let through and others I don't. I do wish I could edit the comments, not to change peoples' opinions or put words in their mouth or censor them, necessarily, but to regularize spelling and punctuation if nothing else.


Blogger Dion said...

Completely understandable, pitty there are so many people out there, who go out of their way to try ruin it for everyone else.

1:38 PM  
Blogger Rob Brown said...

Sorry to hear that. Great blog - hope the terrorists don't make to much of an impact. Keep up the good work!

4:30 PM  
Blogger Christopher said...

I do not think there should be any comment moderation.

It might be what the folks who run the blog want, a very clean happy no-argument style blog.. but, I do not think it is what the users who read this blog want.

I think most people want to interact and discuss the blog postings in an unmoderated, unfiltered fasion.

Bad apples or not, I think users are more likely to accept issues dealing with trouble users quicker than theyd accept the chance their time spent writing a comment might be wasted due to someone deeming it un-needed or not worth the public seeing.

At this point, even if I might have something I feel would make it through the moderation and be interesting to other readers I generally dont post it because theres a chance my time will be wasted.

I think the blog misses out on opinions and comments from a lot of very interesting people who might be thinking ideas very similar to mine!

6:56 PM  
Blogger shaggy dog pix said...

The web does seem to bring out the boneheads.

7:26 PM  
Blogger eolake said...

Registered where? With Blogger?

7:47 PM  
Blogger newyorkdaily said...

It's ok. Registration is not a big deal. :)

8:11 PM  
Blogger Bas Scheffers said...

How annoying, when you go to sign up, it assumes you also want to create a blog yourself.

So as a tip for those signing up, after saving the first page where you enter a name and password, just close the window without creating a blog; your account has been created and can be used to post here.

5:45 AM  
Blogger pinholeman said...

stupid terrorists!

7:00 AM  
Blogger Joshwa said...

Have you considered moving to a (non-blogger) web host? E.g. Movable Type, Wordpress, etc? It's a little more work and money for a lot more control.

Agreed with previous posters that creating a blogger account is a pain (no, I don't want my own blog, I just want to comment on others').

11:30 AM  
Blogger Ted Kostek said...

I don't have the reference handy, but I have read that anonymous posting has regularly caused problems.

The argument for anony posting is that people will feel less inhibited and be willing to open up more.

The problem is that this supposed 'pro' is too true. When folks don't feel any ownership or responsibility, they don't self-censor.

There was also a Supreme Court case similar to this some years ago. It was something about political correctness on college campuses. In a minority dissenting opinion, one of the justices said that to have free speech you need to have a certain amount of regulation. One person w/ a loudspeaker can drown out everyone else, and you need to be able to regulate that person.

This is a long way of saying I'm in favor Mike's decision.

4:03 PM  
Blogger thechrisproject said...

As a techie and user of many different blogging software programs I have a few questions:
1)Why make users register? You can still moderate comments whether users are registered or not.
2)Couldn't the abusive person then just register with blogger? Especially if it's just the one bad person.

I do believe that it's your blog and you should do whatever you want with it, but I'd like to bring up the fact that most "big name" blogs have relatively unmoderated comments sections.

And I hate to harp on it, but I think the biggest problem with Blogger is still that images don't show up in online RSS feed readers. I've complained to them and tried to bring the issue up as often as possible, but still nothing.

4:29 PM  
Blogger Steve White said...

Most sincere thanks to bas sheffers, as I gave up commenting some months ago as I have no intention of creating by own blog. A minor note in creating a blogless account - you'll have to forward through a page or two to ensure that your username is available before you exit at the "set up your blog" page.

With all respect to christopher's concerns of unanticipated censorship, having read much of Mike's work and much of his blog, I don't believe relevant commentary or argument are at risk. With twenty years of experience in an online aviation special interest group ( I believe a moderated forum is more cordial, insightful, and useful to its members than the clear-quill democracy of unmoderated postings. As the EPA says, YMMV. I also appreciate the inordinate amount of time and emotional energy moderating a discussion group takes, so sincere thanks to Mike for doing this at all!

4:46 PM  
Blogger Jeremy said...

Once an editor, always...

6:57 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home