We know it’s rare for there to be any rudeness or twattery on the internet, cough, but in the unlikely circumstances of something going awry online we decided it would be useful to set out some guidelines so we all know where we stand.
Just as newspapers don’t see the need to print every letter they receive we do not feel obliged to allow every comment to be published either. We will delete any comment that we think brings the quality of the site into question – whether that’s rudeness, derailing threads or X-rated language we reserve the right to remove any comment at our own discretion.
You’re all welcome guests in our house, but please don’t make a mess.
- abide by the rules of common decency. No racism, homophobia or other hate speech will be tolerated.
- stay within the law. If you slander someone we get sued, so we’d appreciate it if you kept it legal.
- play nice. Disagreements are the stuff of life and are more than welcome. Name calling and rudeness are not.
- keep it in proportion. You’re on the internet not fighting a holy war against spelling errors where all enemies must be crushed.
- keep on topic. While we’re happy to give a certain lee-way on off topic contributions if we think you are deliberately trying to change the subject we may choose to remove comments at our discretion.
- don’t spam us. It’s annoying. If you want us to link to you just email us, we’re a friendly bunch.
- if you’re angry take a deep breath and perhaps wait an hour before commenting. Post in haste regret at your leisure.
- don’t be a dick. All dickery will be expunged without mercy or explanation.
- if you post anonymously we will cut you much less slack than if you post under your name.
- not to remove comments just because we disagree with them. Disagree away.
- not to remove comments from people just because we don’t like you. We love everyone anyway.
- not to be provocative for the sake of it. All that attention seeking is just too tiring.
- not to be heavy handed. If we delete something it’s because we feel we have no option.
- to try to maintain the standards we expect of comments in the articles themselves.
Although we reserve the right to ban individual users from our site in general we’d rather penalise the behaviour rather than the perpetrator. All we want to do is create a space where people feel safe to comment without being abused or having to read a load of silly nonsense.
If you see a comment that you think needs to be deleted email us with the link and why you think it should be removed and we will take a look asap. We can’t promise to get it right 100% of the time. We’re imperfect human beings and there is a tension between allowing a free discussion and discouraging inappropriate behaviour.
Thank you for your understanding.