I’ve been around a bit, you know? I’ve seen things on the internet. Everyone can, with a tiny bit of effort, carve out their own little bit of the internet, this one is mine and I’d be grateful if we all played reasonably nicely. Simply put, I know how comments can go, so please behave just a little bit.
1) Try to attack ideas and behaviour not the people having those ideas or exhibiting the behaviour. I will likely fail this one in the first few seconds of this blog going live. I am a tetchy person.
2) The “Three Comment Rule” is in force. Allow a person three comments before unleashing the full might of your Someone Is Wrong On The Internet Syndrome. This is a limited medium, the opportunity for false positives is far higher than in meatspace. Try to aim for charity even if you occasionally miss.
3) Bigotry, proper bigotry not just being told when you are being an arse…oops failed 1) already… is very frowned upon. Sexism, misogyny, homophobia, racism, transphobia, ableism, classism etc and on and on are causes for instant banning. If you cannot get over an intellectual hurdle a millimetre high and realise your experience is a) not shared by everyone and b) not binding on anyone, then you’re in deep doodoo. Treat people different from yourself with respect. Intent is not magic.
4) Swearing and profanity is fine. I love me a good swear on occasion, even though the claimed cathartic effects seem to have been disproven recently. Annoyingly. Try to use profanity with appropriate love though.
5) Contrarians, trolls, griefers, stalkers, troublemakers, general tossers, please don’t. You are why we cannot have nice things. You will be banned, save me the strain on my finger.
6) Allies, this sums things up nicely:
“I must make two honest confessions to you, my Christian and Jewish brothers. First, I must confess that over the past few years I have been gravely disappointed with the white moderate. I have almost reached the regrettable conclusion that the Negro’s great stumbling block in his stride toward freedom is not the White Citizen’s Counciler or the Ku Klux Klanner, but the white moderate, who is more devoted to “order” than to justice; who prefers a negative peace which is the absence of tension to a positive peace which is the presence of justice; who constantly says: “I agree with you in the goal you seek, but I cannot agree with your methods of direct action”; who paternalistically believes he can set the timetable for another man’s freedom; who lives by a mythical concept of time and who constantly advises the Negro to wait for a “more convenient season.” Shallow understanding from people of good will is more frustrating than absolute misunderstanding from people of ill will. Lukewarm acceptance is much more bewildering than outright rejection.”
Dr Martin Luther King Jr. From here.
Please don’t let me down! When it comes to fighting bigotry please try to walk the walk, not talk the talk. And yes, we all get it wrong sometimes. Very much including me. That does not mean be an Egregious Social Justice Keyboard Warrior. What might not fly elsewhere might fly here and vice versa.
This isn’t a crimp on your free speech, this is a privately paid for and run blog. Yes it’s open to public comment, but just like you can get barred from a pub for acting like a muppet, you can get barred from here for just the same thing. Set up your own blog, I can’t stop you, nor would I. Your speech is free but that does not mean you have a right to a specific platform being provided for you. Criticism is not evil. Even criticism of my ideas is not evil.
8) Sockpuppetry is an instant ban offence. As is impersonating another known person/commenter.
9) No outing of pseudonymous commenters or people, or anonymous people or commenters. No “doxxing”, no posting of anyone’s private details even if they have given you permission. Seriously, I will instantly ban you the second I see it, even if you are my dear old mum posting her own address. I want none of that here.
10) No death threats, rape threats, threats of violence, no obvious breaches of the law in anything resembling this manner. Instant ban, details sent to the police. I will make EFFORT with people who do this. I will make sure their details are given to the relevant local and international authorities.
I RESERVE THE RIGHT TO PUBLICLY POST, WITH FULL IDENTIFYING INFORMATION ABOUT THE SOURCE, ANY FORM OF CORRESPONDENCE TO ME, ABOUT ME, OR IN ANY COMMENT ON THIS BLOG, THAT CONTAINS THREATS OF VIOLENCE OF ANY CRIMINALLY LIABLE KIND.
11) Try to contain interblog drama and “he said she said” to other blogs, it’s a personal pet peeve of mine. I am not going to be pleased if people drag their issues onto my little patch. Obviously this can be waived to some degree if the post in question you are commenting is about interblog drama. It is very unlikely to be the case though.
The fact I even have to say any of this is moderately disappointing. I have a generally high regard for much of our species. Please don’t let me down.