Dishing It Out, But Not Taking It
You know the old saying, "he can dish it out, but he can't take it".
That was my first thought about traditional media's efforts in the blog world when I read David Carr's piece in the New York Times today on blog comment problems at the Washington Post and the LA Times.
Blogs are conversations and when they are on a topic that people care a lot about, like politics or sports (and sometimes technology), they can get pretty mean spirited.
I had to start approving my comments yesterday because of the wave of comment spam I've been hit with. But I can assure you of this. I will approve every comment that a real person (not a spam bot) posts on my blog as long as it does not contain pornography or hate speech. If someone calls me an idiot, I will approve it (and may agree with them at times).
I believe in open and free speech and blogs are best when they are open for free speech. People can parse through what is mean, hurtful, and wrong and what is thoughtful and intelligent. But let them do that on their own and don't try to do it for them.
And have thick enough skin to let people say whatever they want in your comments section.
Or don't have one.