2011-12-09

Discussion

I only have one rule when it comes to comment moderation: No robots. This means, I delete anything that looks like mindless spam. I don't mind if someone advertises their own blog or website on my blog, but only if a human being does it. If it's a line of code, it most likely gets deleted automatically by Blogger. The few that occasionally filter in get deleted by me most of the time.

I do not delete any of the following:
  • Comments with which I disagree
  • Comments that lead to tangential discussions
  • Comments by specific people or members of particular groups
  • Jokes, profanities, vulgarisms, etc.
Thinking about it just now, I imagine I would probably delete an embedded picture if it could be deemed offensive by some of my readers. (A link to the same picture would be okay by me, though.)

The point is, I don't delete comments. I don't believe in it. 

I have occasionally had my comments deleted from other blogs. Given that I never post vulgarities or obscenities, this has always been due to a simple disagreement: the owners of the blogs in question disagree with my opinion so profoundly that they do not even want their readers to encounter it as a comment.

I go back and forth on this. It seems to be either dishonesty or fear, or some blend of the two. I commit to avoiding any blog that deletes my comments more than once for no good reason. I don't mind that some blogs have a "no advertising your own blog" rule (like EconLog). I play by those kinds of rules. That's fair.

But when some bloggers repeatedly delete peaceful, calm, but well-reasoned counter-arguments to their posts, I basically stop reading their blogs altogether. I have no reason to try to engage with individuals who refuse to engage with me in an honest way, who will only agree not to delete my thoughts on the condition that they reinforce their own.

One More Thing (Important)
Some of you have experienced having submitted a comment to my blog, but it did not appear. I have received reports of this behavior many times, and frankly I cannot figure out what the problem is. I suspect it is a web browser issue (I use Chrome, which works fine for me, but Blogger and Chrome are both Google products), but I don't know for sure.

If you have experienced this, please accept my apologies and know that I want you to post your comment. In the worst-case scenario, you can always reach out to me via email, Google+, Facebook, etc., and I will attempt to post your comment myself.