Ron Rosenbaum

An Interesting Comment on Comments

One of the first and best lessons about journalism, is one I learned from Nat Hentoff and the late Jack Newfield at the Village Voice. (Newfield spent decades crusading to get child-poisoning lead out of the paint in New York City public schools and housing before getting a strict law passed. You know the kind of evil regulation that represents tyranny to the Tea Partiers) )

Just keep at it, they’d say. Don’t let them of the hook. It’s not really my style or practice, I tend to jump from one subject to another but every once in a while I do find something to pre occupy me.

I haven’t felt that way about anything for a whle as I do, for instance about the Tea Partiers, the new Know Nothngs of our time.(look it up, Tea Partiers) the more you criticize them the more you learn about them, specifically how much in favor of the Consitution they supposedly are, until you use your First Amendment rights to criticize them. That’s one thing blogging allows: you can pursue a subject over time–not just in one story–pursue something until you’ve nailed it.

And I’ve made a point of a running commentary on blog commentary as well since it seems such a toxic social dynamic in the blogosphere as a whole. Anonymous abusive commenter cowards may not realize in what contemt theyre held in wdening circles of the blogosphere. I’m proud to have done my part.

Still, I don’t know if I agree with what Prof..Jeffrey Weintraub wrote in his blog about comments.Sure the can be so ignorant and repulsive they can mamke you e think human nature, nonetheless I think they’re very revealing, especially the ones by anonymous abusive cowards who can’t help showing the ugly, twisted mask of fear and hatred beneath their anonymity. But others, <"http://jeffweintraub.blogspot.com/2010/02/why-i-have-never-been-tempted-to.html">like Weintraub disagree. And it would probably good for some commenters to see how others see them, not just me.

So here’s his opening:

” Tuesday, February 16, 2010
Why I have never been tempted to activate the “comments” feature on my blog
Perhaps I’m being unfair or excessively finicky to say this, but my impression from reading blogs for almost a decade is that, as a general rule, the “comments” threads on most blogs tend to be dominated by junk that is useless at best–and often worse than that, since it’s common for them to fill up with mindless ranting and vituperation. There are occasional exceptions, and some blogs with well-established constituencies even manage to generate intelligent discussions in the “comments” threads. But, even for those blogs, keeping things from getting out of hand usually requires persistent and draconian policing of the “comments” to weed out postings and posters that go over the line (trolls, obsessives, bigots, conspiracy theorists, outright loonies, and so on). That strikes me as more time-consuming than it’s worth, though I can appreciate why other bloggers might feel differently.”

Something to keep in mind.