And it came to pass an excellent, not or not constantly moderated blog was disrupted for weeks on end by the usual – possibly only one – suspects. The comments are now suspended as the blog owner examines ways to improve things.
The platform I use does not leave one with many choices. You can’t, for example, say “some commenters get in the moderation queue, others are free to write”. What you can do is to moderate everyone or no one, and obviously allow some names to get directly in the rubbish bin.
I do not know what other platforms allow, and I do not care because what I have now is perfectly fitting for my tightly monitored blog. But if I were to allow unmoderated comments I would use the following policy:
1. Make clear to my readers I go through the comments possibly every day, every second day at the maximum. This would have to be put in the line inviting people to comment.
2. When I do so, I delete all comments of disrupters, and all comments of those who react to them. Without exception, and in full.
As a result, every conversation two or more days old would be guaranteed troll-free. But those messages that feed the trolls would be deleted too, and they would be deleted even if a great part of the message was not about the troll.
Everyone would soon understand real troll feeding is wasted time, and actually even an oblique reference to the troll causes all the work to be lost. The troll is left alone, with a stage that will go on for some hours. The lurkers will soon notice almost no one reacts to the troll, and certainly no one of the frequent posters. Those who do – and some would, for the fun of it – would post short, copy and paste messages like “this will soon be deleted together with your reaction, so just ignore it”, or very short funny remarks about the message about to die, and so on. Those who don’t learn to react appropriately and actually answer to the troll quickly learn it wasn’t the smart thing to do. Trolls are immediately put in the spam list with their email address – which the blog owner can always read -, so they will need a new email for every trolling exercise.
Of course, if one has better technical options at his disposal this can be different.
But I think this can be enough of control – and a useful training to self discipline and humour concerning trolls – to allow blogs not to be highjacked by them.
Just a thought.
As for my little effort, nothing will change.
No “Ganganelli” here, either.
Some words in addition to the linked post.
1. for those who still have not understood it, this is my living room on the Internet. I would not allow you in my living room to speak out against me. By all means, it’s a free country, shout it to the entire planet. But I won’t give you my living room to do it, or the time of day to care of what you say.
2. As I want to have as much control as I can about the content – and there are people who are very subtle in trying to smuggle content I don’t like in their messages through links – please consider that in principle every external source you mention is, to me, part of your message. If the message links to a 30 minutes video, you have written a message that requires me 30 minutes to be read. The probable consequence of this you have already imagined.
3. “But Mundabor, why there should not be a measure of debate?” Because whilst you would find I am a rather good debater – and if you followed me on “Homo Smoke” you know what I am saying – I am very skeptical about debates being so useful. I prefer to use my time to present the Truth, not to have Truth dialogue with Error; and even when the disagreements are of far littler import, I do not think I should waste the time away to debate things of lesser importance. This is why I actually run a blog instead of a Forum. This blog was born without a comment option. I believe in God, the Father Almighty. Not in debate.
4. It never ceases to amaze me how subtle some people are in sneaking into this space with initially Catholic arguments, and then appear to have an entirely different agenda – generally of the judeo-masonic-CIA-conspiracy type, but not only – which slowly emerges from their message until it becomes open. It lets me think the different agenda was the purpose from day one. These people are banned. I have only “unbanned” one person up to now. I am one in the Darcy mould: my good opinion, once lost, is (very probably) lost forever. If you don’t care about that, just imagine how much I care that you don’t.
5. Moderation is becoming really time-consuming. There are days with more than 40 messages in my inbox. It requires a rather Mussolinian attitude to them if I am to also do what this blog was born for: put my content in it. Thanks to those who keep it short and to the point.
6. Feel free to add links if you think they can be useful, but please do not be offended if I have to cut the entire message because I have no time to check the link. I do not edit messages as not only it takes time, but I am unsure about the legal implications of this. I decide on a case by case basis. Please do not be offended.
Or else feel free to be offended, but then please also be coherent and do not comment – or visit – anymore.
One never ceases to be amazed at what is found in one’s comment box (and I do not divulge my email; because then things would become funny indeed) when one opens a blog. Every reader who has a blog can probably relate.
I wonder at times what motivates people. I do not go around visiting atheist blogs and trying to post there, nor yet trying to get some publicity for my blog; nor do I search for sodomite blogs and invite them to repent; least of all I try to, hear this, promote my blog among them. Believe it or not, some people truly do this. Astonishing.
Then there are the interminable ranters dreaming of global judeo-masonic persecutions, and you can smell the vodka from the other side of the ocean (they tend to be Americans, I have noticed; vodka is cheaper there than in Blighty).
Then there are the ranters tout court, basically complaining against the entire planet and that the sun goes up in the East, and taking everything human or divine down in their stride. I pity them, and think they must be tragically lonely. I understand why, though.
Then there are the nutcases, from the chap who has created a religious order only existing in …… his own blog to those speaking for more or less cretinous two-heads interest groups (something like “Occupy” but vastly more insignificant; which is, in itself, an achievement). “You are insignificant too”, you might say, and you would be right. But exactly because I am I do not try to alert the world to the absolute necessity of becoming aware of my existence. I am interested in those Catholic who might be interested in reading what I write, not in making of this blog an ego exercise.
I receive messages with “read my blog” lines, and relative links. Yeah, right…
Perhaps the nature of this blog – notwithstanding its minuscule readership – attracts the nutcases through the shameless showing of conservative Catholic symbols and people (the photos of the Popes; Pius XII everywhere, etc). Perhaps when one is drunk and in the mood for a rant the easiest thing to do is to google a raft of conservative Catholic terms and if I am unlucky, google will do the rest (Google is inexplicably good to me; just digit “Mundabor” and you’ll get my main page and six under-pages to give you more choice; again, fully unjustified in comparison to my minuscule readership).
But the simple fact is: this blog is not here for reasoned debate, nor is it an exercise in religious pluralism (ha!) or in democracy. Least of all is it a platform for unrepentant sodomites and wannabe alternative prophets. This blog is, purely and simply, an instrument of shameless Catholic propaganda at the best of what yours truly can do, and for you to read if you find it instructive or ignore if you don’t.
If you want “nuanced”, go to Vincent “Quisling” Nichols. If you want “debate”, go to some Catholic forum. If you want atheism, go to hell (or repent). If you want political correctness, you couldn’t be more wrong than here. Think Mussolini, and you’ll have a good idea of how I manage my blog. Alas, I wasn’t born “pluralist”, and if I had had an interest in wasting my day moderating what other people write I’d have created a forum, and ceased having a life as a result.
I sometimes think – and I don’t think it often – I am too gentle if every cretin can litter my message box and think I will waste your time and mine posting his supposedly brilliant lucubrations (whiff of vodka, again); which, in turn, would force me to reply to the madness, as the posting of anti-Catholic or even questionable material without adequate rebuttal is inconceivable; which, in turn, means my blog would be driven – time being what it is – from what they write rather than from what I want to write.
I am embarrassed at times, because not all of the mad night-philosophers are evil; some are, in my eyes, purely deluded time wasters thinking the world must pay attention to them.
Not here, please. Be warned that I do not even read your rants to the end, and who cares if you have been writing 25 minutes before finally detaching yourself from the keyboard and going to bed. At the first signs of stupidity, or anti-Catholic propaganda, or sodomite whining, or delusion of grandeur – have I told you of the one to whom God had appeared? Didn’t read what He had allegedly told him… – and such like you are thrashed.
You had spent 35 minutes writing?