About Commenting and Self-Policing

Mark Stevenson
by Mark Stevenson
about commenting and self policing

The Truth About Cars has always valued its knowledgeable, insightful, and outspoken commenters. It’s because of this that I’ve let you, the Best & Brightest, police yourselves.

With this approach to our community that exists below the articles, it was my hope that you’d become a chaff-shedding strain of wheat, dispensing with those who offer little in favor of focusing on those who offer much.

However, as is the case, sometimes the only person heard on a street is the one shouting through a megaphone.

I’m here to take that megaphone away — then give it back.

Yesterday’s takedown attempt of Mark Baruth wouldn’t be remarkable if it wasn’t a consistent motive from certain members of B&B’s chorus. It’s remarkable in its predictably. Before I hit the “Schedule” button in WordPress, I immediately knew what would happen.

What I didn’t know at the time was this: some of you would be so fed up with the current discourse that you’d take time out of you days to send me full-blown letters, properly spaced, with your real names digitally emblazoned at the bottom.

In response to the latest attack against one of our writers and you, we’ll be making the following changes:

  1. We’re going to rewrite the commenting rules and make sure you read them.
  2. Those rules will emphasize bans for personal attacks, conspicuous self-promotion, and trolling.
  3. We will allow the B&B to police themselves in a more formal fashion.

While the B&B will have little involvement in the first two points, it has everything to do with the third numbered bullet.

Starting today, we are on the hunt for moderators to help cooler heads prevail within our community. If you are interested, shoot me an email. We’ll pick more than one, and those people will be required to work together to make the comments a better place for all involved.

Until then, slàinte mhath!

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2 of 296 comments
  • Art Vandelay Art Vandelay on Jun 26, 2016

    And Oh Yeah...BRING BACK BERTEL!!!!!

  • Threeer Threeer on Jun 27, 2016

    Here's how I recommend moderating: just don't read the exchanges/posts of those that *might* offend you. If we moderate, then we run into issues with how different folks view what needs to be moderated. Management by committee and all that, you know? My personal feelings on the whole DW/Bark exchange and some of BSTR's comments I'll leave to myself. Everybody can, at times, offer great insight into a given topic. One would hope folks here are mature enough to self-regulate and maintain some semblance of respect and decorum (one of the main reasons I think many of us have stuck around for so many years now), but if they can't, I always have the option of simply skipping posts by those I know will potentially cause a temporary rise in my blood pressure.

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