In today’s paper, The New York Times notes that many news sites are moving away from the free-for-all mentality of anonymous commenting, asking users to provide personal information and sometimes real names.
How do The Times commenters feel about this? Well, they feel many different ways, but they definitely feel good about themselves.
In one of the article’s “Highlighted” comments, Aaron of WV writes:
The NYT thankfully has a more level-headed community that I would argue doesn’t present the same types of problems with anonymous postings. I rarely come across really inflamed or ignorant comments. Though one can never know when one comes across a deleted comment. Keep up the good work NYT readers.
In another, Amy of the Midwest says:
I like the way the NYT handles reader comments. It strikes an excellent balance between accessibility and civility.
Agrees Jacqui of Connecticut:
I personally very much like the Times policy of moderating every comment. . . . I think going to a Times-based model would be the best solution for everyone. It allows for some anonymity, but also ensures the best quality comments.
And Ellen of Tucson concurs:
I love the community here. I find every post has at least one kernel of information or a point of view I had not considered. I feel I always come away from a comment thread with much more knowledge and a broader perspective of the topic.
So: Well done, internet! In fact, says Sam of Florida:
I often get more out of the comments, sorry reporter, than I do out of the original article.