Thursday, March 24, 2011

New Comments Policy

Countermand all of that. I've just created a new, more comprehensive policy (here, but you can also access it from those shiny new "tabs" at the top of the page).

And what better way to inaugurate a new comments policy than with some beheadings bannings! N. Friedman, Joe (who I think is posting anonymously now, but I'm not sure), Superdestroyer, that insanely passive-aggressive person who I banned awhile ago and can't be bothered to look up, but hasn't been back since anyway -- thanks for all your contributions, but this blog is changing direction and I don't see you as part of our plan for future growth. Take care, and enjoy our generous severance package -- a link for you to start your very own blog! I may even link to it on occasion. You never know.

For the rest of y'all, I hope this clears out the weeds and gives us a better space for future discussion. I also hope it pulls some of the lurkers back into the light -- there are several people who used to comment here far more frequently and I now rarely see around, and I'd love to have you back. Yes, that means you, whoever is reading this. And if you've never commented before because you thought it was just jumping into a cesspool, well, can't say I blame you, but give it a try now! I do care about this blog and the community it engenders, and I really want the comments section to be something I look forward to reading, not dread slogging through.

Let's try this out as a comments policy. I've never seen this before (in fact, I just thought of it two minutes ago), so maybe it will fail miserably, but I'm inclined to try it and see if play out.

You (which is to say, not me) are limited to one comment for every three posted. So if you post a comment, you cannot comment again until at least two other comments are written, at which point you can post again. "Two part" comments count as one comment for purpose of this rule. Any violators will have their comments summarily deleted, regardless of content. I retain the right to waive this rule at any point, for any commenter, and for any reason that I desire (including not counting my own comments as "comments" for the purpose of the rule -- e.g., if I'm explaining why someone is being deleted, that probably won't count as one of the intervening "two" before you comment again).

The goal is to provoke conversation, not endless two-person shouting matches that choke off the life for other commenters. I may move the threshold to three comments if it looks like this increases section vibrancy, or I may keep it the same, or I might abandon the project. But for now, this is the new rule.


Anonymous said...

So "two-part" mega annoying suck-out-the-oxygen posts are allowed, or not allowed but the still count as one post for counting purposes?

troll_dc2 said...

I take it that you have a problem with two specific commenters, but rather than single them out, you have decided to try out a blanket rule covering everyone. So if Commenter A says something to which I respond, and then Commenter B says something else, I cannot respond to B unless a Commenter C shows up. If that does not happen, then I am silenced. You like?

David Schraub said...

I'm not wildly in love, but it seems like a decent patch.

Andrew said...

Wait, are you doing this in addition to enforcing registration?

Because otherwise...someone intent on trolling you could simply invent three identities.

Also, I have a feeling you'll find this more trouble than it's worth unless you have some kind of automated system to do it for you. Assuming you go through with it, at least be sure it's prominently posted.

N. Friedman said...

Since, most likely, this policy is aimed, at least in part, at me, I have no problem. I always post using the same name. In that I have considerable involvement with historical matters and have professional historians as friends, I tend to post mostly at HNN, which basically does not care so long as you do not bad mouth without reason.

For what it is worth, posters benefit from having their views challenged. A problem with this website is that facts become irrelevant if they run afoul of the PC ideology; which is a shame because the proprietor of the blog is, otherwise, a brilliant guy (albeit lost in a self-blinding ideology).

N. Friedman said...

Well, I'm banned.

I hope you all enjoy the PC comments.

For David, grow up. You might realize that, in fact, you have known me for a number of years - back when you were a kid.

N. Friedman said...


One last thing, while you are contemplating how you know me, my last name is not actually Friedman.

David Schraub said...

Alas, what curiosity I have is outweighed by the fact that (a) I don't really care and (b) I've met lots of people whose last name isn't Friedman, making it a rather futile contemplation.

Bye-bye now!

N. Friedman said...


A hint: think about the recommendations you have had written for you in your life.

David Schraub said...

Yeah, this is rapidly crossing over into creeps-ville.

N. Friedman said...


Well, I am not going to do more than hint here. But, you do know me and actually hold me in high regard - except on this website.

David Schraub said...

Well, life is full of ironies. In any event, I'm still drawing a blank, and my girlfriend is worried that you're a sociopath who's going to cut us in our sleep, so perhaps it's best that call it quits?

N. Friedman said...


Kiss her for me. She also knows me.

And, I only come on this website to challenge you because I think you have harmed your intellect when you bought into the anti-racist thing. It is an illiberal movement, one unworthy of your intelligence.

Anyway, I shall no doubt see you in the near future.

Bye, bye.

Anonymous said...


N. Friedman said...

One last word. I am not a sociopath. I merely wanted you to know who you had banned. Good luck and you can still come to visit me when you are home. I do not take offense at having been banned.

Rebecca said...

Seriously weird comments. David, maybe you should require all future commenters to give their real names (as you tell us your real name too). I'm Rebecca Lesses.

chingona said...

I find it kind of ironic that Mr. Friedman gave me the "whatever your real name is" treatment when I had that little Google snafu the other day, AND FRIEDMAN ISN'T EVEN HIS REAL NAME!!!!

Well, too late now, but I was going to suggest a word limit.

Cycle Cyril said...

Since I have not commented in a while I'm not yet banned so I have this opportunity to post at least one more time.

I have followed this blog because I saw the intellectual potential of David misdirected, as N. Friedman noted, into this anti-racist "thing". I thought that his affinity to Judaism and Israel might allow him to see the widening gap between the illiberal liberal left and Israel/Jews and the dangers to the West and Israel by a 7th Century Islam active in the 21st Century.

But I was wrong.

But I cannot say I was as persistent as N. Friedman but then I do not have any personal relationship with David.

I will probably continue to monitor this blog for a while but banning debate will make it less and less interesting and more and more predictable. You will need to reconsider the name of this blog.

Andrew said...

I've never really understood the dedication of the modern right to anti-anti-racism.

Ugh. Why aren't such people more concerned with *actual* racism (which certainly includes seeing evil Muslim conspiracies around every corner) than with protecting their ideological allies from the horrifying accusation of bigotry?

Stupid question, I know. ;)

In any case, the above "conversation" was very very weird.

Matthew said...

So I guess that Friedman would have steadily emitted his crazy over the remainder of this blog's lifespan, but instead his banning prompted him to expel it all as one hilarious and unsettling supernova of misguided concern? Whatever happened, I laughed so hard that I started getting dirty looks down here in the Duke library.