Daily BulletinDaily Bulletin

The Conversation

  • Written by Cory Zanoni, Community Manager, The Conversation

Every so often, after removing a few comments for violating our community standards, a discussion will start about moderation and what kinds of comments are removed. Inevitably, one line of argument will pop up:

Comments shouldn’t be removed just because they disagree with the author.

It’s been a recurring theme since I started working at The Conversation. It’s perplexing since we here at TC agree.

Fostering debate

We neither expect nor want discussions where everyone agrees. As our community standards say:

We want the discussion of an article to be, if anything, more illuminating than the original article.

You don’t get illuminating discussions if everyone thinks or says the same thing. Debates need dissent to function: it’s how we reach new, more interesting ideas. And we wrote our community standards to help foster robust, interesting debate.

That’s why they encourage the things we think are necessary for high quality debate: respect for others, transparency, supporting evidence and a constructive approach to discussion.

I do the overwhelming bulk of the moderation on The Conversation Australia’s articles and I can, quite comfortably, say I’ve removed comments I agree with. I’ve also removed comments I didn’t agree with.

But my belief or lack thereof hasn’t factored into a comment’s removal since that doesn’t factor into our standards.

Why comments are removed

That said, I understand why the argument keeps popping up. In the absence of a clear explanation of why a comment was removed people can easily assume it was because of some nefarious reason.

That’s on us to fix. We’re working at making our moderation more transparent and will continue to do so. It also means acknowledging when we get a moderation decision wrong — it happens, after all.

But our doing that requires a certain level of self reflection on the part of moderated commenters too. It calls on people to acknowledge that a comment mightn’t have been on topic or might have been a touch too personal.

Sharing opinions

That won’t always happen. People mightn’t be used to our standards or they just plain won’t like having comments removed for any reason. There’s going to be miscommunication and a misalignment of goals whenever a diverse range of people come together en masse to talk about things.

That’s why we think our community standards are important. We want that diverse range people to share their diverse range of opinions in an illuminating a way as possible.

Authors: Cory Zanoni, Community Manager, The Conversation

Read more http://theconversation.com/we-dont-remove-comments-just-because-we-disagree-with-them-63586

We need to Close the Gap on health. But even official dietary advice disadvantages Indigenous people


'It is not easy': how science and courage saved the stunning Australian Alps


The Conversation


Did BLM Really Change the US Police Work?

The Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement has proven that the power of the state rests in the hands of the people it governs. Following the death of 46-year-old black American George Floyd in a case of ...

a Guest Writer - avatar a Guest Writer

Scott Morrison: the right man at the right time

Australia is not at war with another nation or ideology in August 2020 but the nation is in conflict. There are serious threats from China and there are many challenges flowing from the pandemic tha...

Greg Rogers - avatar Greg Rogers

Prime Minister National Cabinet Statement

The National Cabinet met today to discuss Australia’s COVID-19 response, the Victoria outbreak, easing restrictions, helping Australians prepare to go back to work in a COVID-safe environment an...

Scott Morrison - avatar Scott Morrison

Business News

Reinventing The Outside Of Your Office

Efficient work is a priority in most offices. You need a comfortable interior that is functional too. The exterior also affects morale. Big companies have an amazing exterior like university ca...

News Company - avatar News Company

Kaspersky and Ferrari partnership: tailoring cybersecurity for an iconic brand

Kaspersky is commemorating the 10 year anniversary of its strategic partnership with iconic, global brand - Ferrari. The cybersecurity company is a sponsor of the brand’s Formula One racing team...

News Company - avatar News Company

Instant Steel Solutions Review

Are you keen on having the right guidance, knowledge and information about the right kind of steel purchases for your industries? If yes, then you are in the right place. There is no doubt that ...

a Guest Writer - avatar a Guest Writer

News Company Media Core

Content & Technology Connecting Global Audiences

More Information - Less Opinion