Monday, February 07, 2011

Commenting, Interaction and Censorship

Before I begin, let me say and reiterate that I have nobody in mind. This comes about through many experiences.

The notion of blogging, commenting and censorship is something that needs to be taken into account especially when one does a blog. For me, I have set up rules for commenting in order that the blog meta does not descend into chaos. In other words, the rules are there so that fruitful discussion can take place.

While certainly commenting is a privilege (as after all the blog is owned by the owner), yet blogs function not merely as disseminators of information, but also as places of interaction. A blog whereby commenting is disallowed is in my opinion not functioning as a blog should but more as an online bulletin where the discourse is primarily one-way. This is not necessarily a bad thing, but I just do not see the rationale for calling it a blog in the full sense of the word.

While commenting is a privilege, that blogs function as places of interaction mean that inappropriate censorships should not take place. Such censorships defeat the entire purpose of interaction and let the dialogue be skewed by the blog owner and/or moderator. Therefore, the default for comments is that they are to be allowed to be posted, pursuant to abiding by the rules which are there to ensure productive dialogue. (For after all, who wants to have a flaming contest on the meta?) Rather, as long as the rules (which in my opinion are very generous) are followed, anyone with any position is allowed to post anything they wish which starts a dialogue on the post in question.

Occasionally, I have allowed comments with infractions to be published if they help to further dialogue or clarify issues. This is after all the reason why the rules exist. The rules are not after all rigid standards arbitrarily chosen but they exist for a purpose and thus, as I have said, I reserve the right to bend them if that would serve my intended purpose.

I must say that I tend to bring these rules into all forms of social interaction on the Internet, be it Multiply or Facebook. This may not be the thinking of others which causes me irritation, but at least it is true for me. I would probably need to work on my interactions elsewhere, but let me make it clear to all that interactions on all social media on my pages on the Internet follow these rules.

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