Comment Policy

I’ve been thinking about the comment policy for my blogs. I have started deleting comments when people subscribe to comments and use fake email addresses (I get the bounces and it’s annoying).

Also I am deleting comments that don’t make much sense or which don’t address the topic of a post. Some people seem to search for blog posts marginally related to a topic that they want to vent about.

I’ve had someone request that a comment be removed because it was written by someone with the same name as him (see this post if you want to read the details [1]). I’ve written a short document about unique names on the Internet [2] on my documents blog, hopefully it will be useful for other people who become concerned when they discover that they don’t have a unique name.

My general policy about comments is probably going to be not to delete them unless requested by the author of the comment (if there is a good reason), and otherwise to only delete them for technical reasons or for being wildly off-topic.

One thing that seems missing from most blog ethics documents is a section on comments. When I write my own code of blog ethics I’ll have to write a section about this. Suggestions are welcome.

2 comments to Comment Policy

  • Anonymous

    Hopefully I didn’t cause any of those bounces; I always try to uncheck any “notify me” checkboxes when posting an anonymous comment, and obviously never check them if initially unchecked. Sometimes I miss one of the former, but this site at least seems to default to *not* requesting notification, which seems like a feature.

  • etbe

    Anon: I haven’t deleted any of your comments… ;)

    But seriously, why not just use a valid email address? Some people use per-blog email addresses so that they can discover spam sources.