Wednesday, May 11, 2016

On Unmoderated Comment Sections as Safe Spaces for Hate

Here's a good quote via Katie Tandy, writing at The Establishment, justifying her rejection of a comment section at the site:
"...[T]he comments section—which on paper is a virtual democracy in which all voices can and will be heard—has been hijacked and bastardized; it is decidedly Free Speech run amok. We have allowed behavior that is tantamount to hate crimes and granted it our greatest societal blessing. We have created and methodically maintained a ‘safe place’ for every disgusting ‘ism’ on the goddamn planet—while exposing writers and creators to the kind of caustic cruelty that as far as I’m concerned, only belongs in dystopian fiction."
In the old pre-Internet days, publications would filter letters they received and choose to publish only select Letters to the Editor, comprised of critical or supportive commentary. Although publications undoubtedly received abusive letters, the publication had to actively choose to publish it for all readers to see versus throw it in the trash.

Now, many Internet users feel entitled to having their commentary published, seen, and engaged with on-demand just because they hold an opinion and have the ability to directly publish their thoughts on various commenting platforms.

No comments: