Sunday, August 02, 2009
Back, with new rules
Thank you all for the excellent feedback you left during my absence. I've considered everything, and thought a lot about the various proposals. As much as I laughed about the "Dread Pirate Roberts" idea, in the end I rejected all proposals that would require the cooperation with another blogger, as this is a very personal blog. And as the goal is to foster intelligent discussion, while keeping the trolls away, I also dismissed the ideas of stopping to blog or completely disallowing comments. So, after long consideration, this is the new blog rules I've come up with:
Comment moderation: This is the main change, I'm using a Blogger feature called comment moderation now. That basically means that every comment *first* arrives in my mailbox, and only makes it to the blog after I've approved it. That makes posting hateful or derailing comments a lot less attractive for the trolls, because nobody but me will ever see them. The disadvantage is that as I'm not always online, the flow of the discussion will be less smooth, with lots of comments appearing at once, when I find the time to review them, and thus less reader-to-reader interaction. But this is the best compromise to keep the intelligent discussion on the blog, and the trolling off it. This is my place, your right to free speech is limited here. You are free to express your opinions on the subject, whether you agree or disagree, but you aren't free to attack or insult me or the other commenters, or to derail the thread. If you feel I unjustly rejected your comment, feel free to e-mail me, maybe it was just a technical problem or mistake.
Anonymous commenting is back: As I'm manually moderating comments now, I don't need the previously used identification method to prevent anonymous trolling and spamming any more. So you can now post comments without logging onto anything. But *please*, use the Name/URL option instead of the "Anonymous" checkbox. You don't need the URL part, but by typing a name or alias of your choice, you can let me and the other readers know who is posting. Note that if a comment is only borderline acceptable, it is more likely to be rejected if it is completely anonymous, with no name attached at all.
No facts, only opinions: Not much of a change, but an explicit confirmation of something which always worked this way: This is a blog, not a news outlet. The added value (if any) is in the opinions I post, which might be about gaming news, not in the news reporting itself. I might get things wrong, and I'm going to use best guesses for the kind of numbers for which I don't have an exact source. So if you think I got some facts or numbers wrong, feel free to correct me, but don't harrass me on how I should double-check every obscure source. Also this blog isn't going to be, and never was, balanced. I like certain games more than others, and the amount of coverage depends on how much I play the game in question. I'm under no obligation to give equal opportunity and coverage to all games. If that short-changes your favorite game, tough luck!
More personal: Well, still not going to post much about my life, I really don't see the use of twittering about what I had for breakfast. But with the trolls unable to shout me down, I'll excert less self-constraint in occassionally posting about whatever I like or how I feel, even if that leaves the subject of MMORPGs. If me expressing emotions, or posting about touchy subjects like politics is not to your liking, I propose you just skip reading those posts.
Less regular: While I probably still will post a lot, I'll not make a conscious effort any more to post every day. I'll also drop the "Open Sunday Thread" feature, because with comment moderation on it doesn't give me a day off from blogging any more. So from now on, if I have nothing to say, I'll say nothing. Please use the e-mail link on the top right of the page to send me your questions, personal comments, suggestions, or subjects you wish me to cover in a post.
Well, that is it. I'll still be rather busy today, having just come back from holidays, but I'll restart regular game posting this week.