Comments About Comments

From Editor Robert Parry: Regrettably, our Nov. 20 statement regarding standards for comments did not stop the deterioration in the tone of some comments left by some readers, causing us to intervene more directly in the comment section.

As you know, we have traditionally had an open comment section without a moderator (although there is a Spam blocker which occasionally delays the publication of genuine comments as suspected Spam).

But a few readers have abused this openness by leaving racist, bigoted, anti-Semitic or Islamophobic slurs. Some also have directed personal insults at other commenters or our writers. And some have made claims that are patently false or defamatory. Some may be professional “trolls” seeking to spread confusion.

Not surprisingly, some commenters are now complaining about “censorship.” But the problem could be resolved if all commenters took seriously a commitment to civil discourse and refrained from hurling insults at either each other or the people who write for this publication.