July 8, 2013

"Hey you guys... On the comments ban.... I don't blame you."

"I stopped commenting here much because there didn't seem to be a point to it," emails Sonicfrog.
Where there used to be actual discussions, now you only got yelling matches where exchanging ideas was not the purpose; it was simply a contest to see who could be the most nasty and argumentative. The comments section devolved into a contest to see who could be the most bitchy, basically.

I'm not an advocate of making the "no comments" rule permanent, though not having to police the comments section would certainly free you guys up for other more enjoyable things.  Maybe go 3 or 4 months with no comments, then turn them back on selectively and see if you get a fresh start with civility, or you end up with the same old rabble....  Would be an interesting experiment.

Meanwhile, now that Ann is not going to have to spend so much time sifting through the comments....  Maybe now she can again collaborate with the Electric Six and make another music video!!!!! 

Take care:

PS. I'm really glad they never connected Chris to that severed hand a few years ago! He really got away with one there!!!  :-)


Meade said...

from ALP:

Hello Meadehouse:

I have been coming to Althouse daily for years - I think I started in year 2 of the blog. Lately, have commented as "ALP".

On the one hand, getting caught up in internet debates is a real time killer, with little tangible benefit. Why not do something better with my time, like take a walk or read a book? On the other - I have learned some interesting things from Althouse comments. I've been visting blogs and comment threads for years, and most show the worst of human nature at times. A prominent blog like Althouse is bound to get more than its share of whackos.

BUT - in the end, if you are going to visit a blog run by a law school professor, there is probably some attraction to dynamic, at times heated, debates. Ms. Althouse's ability to tear apart a crappy argument is what brought me to the blog in the first place, and its what keeps me coming back. Like a neat freak who can't stand a mess, I can't stand poor, weak arguments.

Meade said...

from Kylos:

I tend to agree with ALP: I look forward to sharp, incisive comments, but they have been getting drowned out by the personal bickering.

Meade said...

from The Drill SGT:

the new system sucks


not the no comments part, though that does as well, but you need also to display your naked email acct( meadelaurence@gmail.com)

rather than invoking MS Outlook.

"But we love our old good commenters, and Meade would love you to email comments to him. Click here to email Meade and he will put up the good comments in the comments thread"

This could work!"

no it will fail, sorry

The Drill SGT

Meade said...

and also from The Drill SGT:

google Asoh defence

It will give Ann a good post

my last contribution to this blog. it's too much work to continue either reading or posting

good luck to both of you

Meade said...

email from Seven Machos:

I got what's really turning into a dream job several months ago [...] So all I do is write stuff over there now.

But I am still reading Althouse every single day. I have only waded into the comments just a couple times since, though.

I do want you and Althouse to know that commenting at the best haus on the internet improved and sharpened my writing and what I'll call my writing sensibility dramatically -- to the point where I was finally ready to write professionally on a wide range of things on a daily basis.
That's really true. I can't thank you guys enough for that.
Your Seven Machos, always

Meade said...

from Original Mike:

The Drill SGT said: "but you need also to display your naked email acct( meadelaurence@gmail.com) rather than invoking MS Outlook."

Thank you, SGT, I had no way to e-mail because I don't use Outlook and knew if I installed it for this one purpose it would hijack all my e-mail activity.

I came here just as much for the comments as for the posts. I learned a lot from reading the comments. Some of the comments are ugly, but a free speech advocate should know that that's the downside of free speech. Unfortunately, the cure is worse than the disease.

Just my opinion.

Meade said...

from Krumhorn:

Hi Ann

I've been a somewhat regular reader of your blog for a number of years, and a once-in-awhile commenter (compared to others, certainly). I like the variety of things that catch your eye. Some might call it eclectic, but I prefer to call it interesting. You have an unusually good mind, and I often admire how you sort through the rubble so effortlessly. I always am enlightened by your interest in words and expressions.

I have a reasonably busy life with an active Beverly Hills law practice and other interests, so I can't say that I devote myself to endless hours of reading your blog and comments, but when I do find the time to wonder around, I am usually rewarded. I have been genuinely amused by many of the posters in your comment section.

I've also been intrigued by what I've thought I've perceived as your 'growth' from doctrinaire white 60's librul to that rare variety of thinking sort of liberal who can see the great harm that has been caused by lefties and their oh-so good intentions. The problem with lefties is that if you don't agree with their program, you are a bigot...a racist....a whiner...a troglodyte. It's never the possibility that we have somewhat common goals but that the devil is in the execution. I think most conservatives are old school classic liberals. There is a very big difference between classic liberals and modern American libruls. Being an early boomer myself, I can safely say that I despise what my generation has wrought. You often show signs of acknowledgement that there is a different way.

Lately, I've detected a different tone from you. I don't have many real gifts, but I have a good ear. Being in the broadcast television business for many years working at two networks and two studios plus my own reasonably successful company, I know that there is great publicity value in poking a stick into the hornets' nest. Just witness the crocodile tears shed by the Weinstein Company currently over their movie, The Butler. I've often thought that is what you do. But over the last handful of weeks, your tone has been difficult to understand, and I think that whatever (unforgiveable) nastiness you have seen, you may have invited. I'm not sure what you hoped to achieve by telling your readers that you laugh in their scrunched up crying little faces when they are lame little men whining about their meager money.

Actually, objectively, that's an hysterically funny flame, and I truly laughed out loud when I read it. But there was an intended meanness to it that was palpable. I felt the same with your triumphalism regarding the SSM decisions. That is surely the kind of thing that will invite harsh comment from the denizens of the wild-west anonymous internet, and you can't get all boo hoo about that. I know that I cringe when I read comments about your motives with respect to your family. However, that says nothing about you, and everything about the poster.

You have loyal readers who like to hang out at your hood. I would be honored, if I were the cause of that. It wouldn't kill you to make nice nice and forge on ahead. I, for one, fell head-over-heals in love with Freeman Hunt a long time ago, and if given the opportunity, would be happily reckless with my DNA if she were involved.

As for me, I'm sure I'll check in regularly to see what you are up to, but it won't be the same with the gnawing suspicion lurking in my mind that you have turned on your readers.

Meade said...

from Sonicfrog:

There is another blog that started at the same time I started Sonicfrog that I have also given up on completely.

It's sad. They kind of felt like family, but the two guys running the blog, one of which I consider a friend, have let a few people totally ruin the experience.

Things came to a head a couple of weeks ago, when one person who has gotten away with thousands of personal attacks decided to accuse me of wanting one of the two bloggers to kill himself, the blogger who I consider a friend.

This blog does have a "No Personal Attacks" policy, but the bloggers are reticent to enforce this policy on those commenters who are of the same political persuasion.The complication is that they also know this guy too, and like him personally. If they did ban him, it would cause a serious rift in their friends ship, and the blog would lose quite a few commenters who actually endorse the actions of this one commenter.

And that was what won out.

So in the end, the personal attacks still occur unabated. I know of three people just in the last few weeks who have decided to move on and not bother reading the blog anymore.

The blog used to feel like a home to me, but now I just can't go there and feel like any comment is worth giving, as there is no genuine analysis or reflection to be had. It's all attack, attack, attack, because might apparently equals right.

Out of respect, I've not mentioned the name of the blog. But if you want some more detail, the conversations are documented at Sonicfrog.net.