Joe Clark on comments
Joe Clark remarks on some fundamentals for making comments work:
- Don’t enable comments unless you really have to. Even if you do, some postings don’t need comments.
- You need published guidelines and a separate place to discuss the application of same.
- You must have courage in your convictions and must have enough backbone to delete comments and ban users when necessary.
- If you are too much of a pussy to throw your weight around now and then because somebody might call you a tyrant or a censor, hang up your skates right now and save everybody some trouble.
- It’s slightly more desirable to delete first and ask questions later than the converse.
He also points to Metafilter as the paradigm case for how to do it right, and I agree. The fact that the admins delete uncivil posts keeps it a reasonable place to spend your time.