Many websites allow for reader comments on post. This allows for sharing of discourse between readers, however websites that allow reader comments are battling with the same issue as we at the moment.
You could argue that travel-related issues would be something that can mostly agree upon, but the situation surrounding the global pandemic has further complicated comments and commenting.
We essentially have four options:
1. Not allow commenting at all
– Many websites have turned off comments altogether because they have become toxic.
2. Require verified identities
– Then, some sites require you not to have handles or avatars but require you to use a verified identity. For example, some websites require you to log in using a Facebook profile.
3. All comments are queried for manual review
– All comments are reviewed by someone that they meet guidelines set by the website
4. Allow commenting but moderate them after/before they go live
– We currently have this fourth option enabled. All the comments go through Akismet and Disqus before they appear. Readers can mark comments for manual review or vote them up/down.
Critical comments are good, and I like reading them.
Here are few examples moderated by us, Disqus, or Akismet:
Comment here is referring to a comment left by another reader where he is referring to travel with a same-sex partner.
Well. Quite self-explanatory.
Someone went ballistic.
I don’t understand why some always come out in the articles that deal with Covid-19 travel and other restrictions, claiming that it is nothing but a “flu” and use fuzzy math and made up “facts”?
Or someone recently called me an anti-Australian (not an issue with that – although I am not one). When I questioned Australia’s approach to Covid-19 and lockdowns, perhaps their strategy was correct in March 2020 but not in August 2021?
I have also pointed out that it is good that different countries have taken different approaches. We will eventually know the best overall strategy if there is one before we get hit with a truly deadly pandemic (eventually, we will).
Also, someone recently called me a “commie” that merely demonstrated that the person has trouble understanding differences between communism, socialism, social democracy, and capitalism, and we don’t have a single country that would be pure communist (China definitely isn’t one) or capitalistic (not even the US).
So, we welcome readers to criticize pieces or comments left by others that respect decorum. However, personal attacks, foul language, calling someone by names and so forth, are not approved and will end up flagging your Disqus account and comments for manual review.
If I need to clean up someone’s comments too many times, I have no other choice than to ban the user.