Friday, October 14, 2005

Blog Ethics

I guess there are some accepted principles in blogging. One is that you don’t change your posts, but rather add to them or show changes. I do this (though if I just published, and haven’t pinged, I will make changes and if I find that an image messes up the layout, I’ll move it, but that doesn’t change the content).

The second is you don’t delete valid comments. It’s odd but the only place I’ve been tempted to delete comments (besides is on Candy Blog when I’ve had a few WTF? comments that were out of line (after all, it’s candy, not politics). Of course Fast Fiction is hardly visited let alone well traveled.

Here’s where things have suddenly gone off the deep end:

If you read my previous post about Steve Almond’s piece on Salon about his encounter with literary blogger Mark Sarvas, then you may have visited Mark’s post in response.

When I first saw his post, it had 6 comments. I went to bed, the next day it had 20 comments and the commenting had been closed, because Mark said that he was not willing to moderate comments during Yom Kippur (totally cool, in my book, you can always unlock comments later). But now ALL COMMENTS have disappeared. They were there yesterday, including the 20th comment which was Mark’s point by point refutation of Steve’s article.

Okay, I know it’s Mark’s blog, but there’s a contract that you make with your readers. That if you have comments then you accept comments under whatever terms you set up. (Yeah, yeah, no spam, no off topic, no linking to porn, whatever you want your rules to be.) You can close them, I really don’t think it was out of line, but deleting is just plain heresy. This reeks of inexperience or worse, fear. I hope that Mark made some mistake during his blog maintanence and deleted the comment thread instead of actually pulling all of them, including his own. The rule is if you say it, stand behind it. If you want to retract it, don’t erase it.

But here I am, dispensing blog advice. The girl with the blog that gets barely 30 hits a day. But I’d hope that should I end up with a thousand-fold of hits and comments, I’d still behave the same way.

POSTED BY Cybele AT 9:20 pm     Curious News

  1. Will you delete this one?
    Russ | 10.15.05 - 7:32 pm | #

    How about two useless comments? This could get quicky annoying.
    Russ | 10.15.05 - 7:33 pm | #

    How come the rabbit eating its tail and all the top element graphics are showing as broken? This makes my web surfing much less enjoyable.
    Russ |  10.15.05 - 7:34 pm | #

    Actually, the graphics appear on the main site, but not if you just look at the one article (like, by clicking the + sign).

    Still upsets my surfing.
    Russ |  10.15.05 - 7:38 pm | #

    Oh, sweet Russ. You’ll have to do much better than that!

    I’ll have to go test what the graphics of the site look like ... I scarcely read my own blog. And it’s going away rather soon.
    cybele | 10.15.05 - 9:13 pm | #

    Going away!!???!!

    This is a sad day, indeed.
    Russ | 10.15.05 - 9:56 pm |

    Yes, I told you, redesign and all ...
    cybele | 10.15.05 - 11:45 pm |

    Well, the deletion of all the comments on my personal weblog were totally out of my control. The guy hosting the commenting system that I was using decided to shut down. But I managed to save all of my comments (even the blatantly religious/homophobic ones that had nothing to do with my posts)! They’re in this weird format now and I’m not sure how I’ll be able to put them back into my blog…
    sya | 10.16.05 - 8:20 am |

    sya - totally different ... because we know that yours wasn’t out of cowardice and you’d probably explain it to anyone who asked, and likely those that didn’t ask.
    cybele | 10.24.05 - 3:07 pm |

    Comment by Cybele on 11/16/05 at 7:14 pm


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During November it's all about me writing a novel. Sometimes it's about whalewatching. You know, and then there's other stuff.