About Comments….part 2

This is now being added as a Page in the “About” section on the left sidebar.

This site is a time-consuming hobby and as such, it needs to remain pleasurable. If not, it becomes a chore. So….below is a repeat of the initial “About Comments” post I did here a little while ago, with a couple of additions.
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I’ve never needed to write or implement a hard comments policy. Neither here at Saab United or previously at Trollhattan Saab. The fact that I’ve never had to do that is something that I’m quite proud of. We have a good community here, 99% of whom are respectful people making good contributions to discussions – which is exactly the way I’d like to keep things.

With that in mind, I’d like to offer the following guidelines.

Respect
Good sportsmanship on the football field implies that the ball is the objective, not the man with the ball (rugby and gridiron fans, please think of other codes of football – ones where kicking the ball with one’s foot is a big part of the game).

It’s the same in comments.

The ball is the issue at hand and your opinion should be confined to that issue. No personal references to other people should be made (unless you know them personally and know they’ll understand where you’re coming from).

The key to everything is to write with respect. It’s OK to be witty about GM, government or whoever else, but there should always be an underlying respect. If you’re being satirical then that satire should be obvious.

Slander

Poor characterisations based on race, religion, gender etc will not be tolerated. End of story. This is non-negotiable and it doesn’t matter whether you’re referring to a fellow commenter or a person of note within Saab or government, or whoever.

Make your point. Once.

If people respond to you and you need to explain something about it and reiterate your point, then fair enough, but the repetition of the same thing over and over again will not necessarily help your case (especially if your case is based on a negative opinion).

Be reasonable.

Listen to others and be willing to accept their point of view. You may not agree with it but they have a right to their opinion, just as you have a right to yours.
It’s the reasonable discussion of these differences that makes for healthy debate.

No dumping

The comments section should not be used as a dumping ground for multiple links, full news stories or elongated speculation.

If you’ve got a news story, please email me. There’s no guarantee I’ll be able to run it (or even provide a reply) but I will see it. Often times there will be other stories that lend some perspective to the story you’ve seen and it’s better to be presented that way rather than in isolation.

This site has a four-plus-year history of covering stuff in a timely and consistent manner that tries to make sure information is in context. I’d like to keep it that way. A couple of hours won’t kill a good story.
If a situation is arising that’s likely to come to a climax when I’m asleep or busy with work, etc, then I’ll ask you to cover that sort of situation in a post called “You make the news….”

Posting an entire story from another website poses several problems:

  1. Potential copyright infringement (minor issue, really, but still…)
  2. There may be one or two paras or sentences that are relevant, but the whole story may not be
  3. If there’s a bunch of largely irrelevant whole stories, people stop reading through the comments in their entirety. I would rather leave space for larger, well considered and original comments. If people get into the habit of bypassing larger comments, then some of these big efforts will be missed.

Your authors are not perfect

Yes. It’s true.

Whilst both Eggs and I do take care to provide the most accurate information we can, we can, do and will make mistakes.

If the mistake is a fundamental aspect of the topic at hand, then please feel free to correct it. If the mistake is something immaterial, then please let us carry on in our own ingnorant condition.
‘Gotcha’ commentary and excessive pedantry really takes the warm fuzzy feelings off what can sometimes be several hours of work in preparing and writing an article.

I think I’ve only ever banned two or three people from commenting at TS and SU. I don’t have plans to ban any more, but don’t tempt me. I’m very tolerant and will go to lengths to help people understand what’s OK and what’s not, but that isn’t an open-ended thing.

What I’d like is what we have here 99.99% of the time – reasonable, insightful, intelligent and entertaining discourse.

Thanks for your attention to this matter.