I didn’t think that the issue of comments section remarks would cause me to lose sleep or feel depressed/anxious, but it’s done both, and now it’s time to act.
The Malik Report community has the potential to thrive, and, for the most part, its members are respectful and engaging, but we have some problems that need to be addressed. These issues have been discussed by the community at some length, both privately and publicly; I am both enacting the recommendations of the community and making the final decisions myself.
On a member-by-member basis:
Fatsavage–Please leave with your head held high, but please leave. The community has repeatedly publicly and privately asked me to ask you to find another website (or maybe start your own blog). The community feels that you are too divisive. The community feels that your passion for the team but distaste for its management becomes too personal in nature, and that’s discouraged members from commenting. I know that you’ve tried very hard to make things work here, and I thank you for your efforts, but we have been unsuccessful. It’s best that we part ways.
GrrRahRah, Biv and others: You are hairs’ breadths from being asked to walk away as well, and it’s because of your good intentions. If there are problems or problem members of the community, you’re supposed to come to the me to rectify any problems. Your well-intended community policing has actually encouraged some bad behaviors, and you’re being asked to “let the blog breathe” and stop fighting fire with fire. I’m reaching out to you instead of banning you because that’s what I prefer to do, but it should be known that you’re on your second and final chances.
The rest of the community: Guests and patrons of TMR are expected to share their opinions with adult decorum and treat each other with significant measures of respect despite, and sometimes because of, your intellectual and personal disagreements. Basic levels of civility are required.
WE HAVE AN IGNORE BUTTON. Use it as a first option.
However, if you feel that you’re being disrespected, harassed, bullied or otherwise prevented from sharing your opinion, and you are unable to work out issues within the comment framework, you are asked to please contact me via email, Twitter or Facebook so that we can deal with these issues in private.
Moreover, if you feel that informal codes of conduct are not adequate, I need to hear your suggestions for a set of rules of engagement.
We may need to establish some guidelines, both formal and informal; I would suggest that our biggest issue is not necessarily that we disagree with each other, but instead, that we tend to react and respond to every disparate opinion.
That’s just not necessary–the blog’s comments section do not belong to one or a few people, they belong to every member of the community. It is essential to give other members of the community room to make comments that are not challenged by a company line.
I hope I am done speaking on this topic for now, but I know that you and I will have to continue to address with the growth of the Malik Report’s community. If we find that certain members remain problematic, it’s my job to prune the tree.
Your comfort affects my bottom line, and I want this blog to grow. It’s up to each of you to be my partner in that regard. In this situation, I have chosen to enact the recommendations of the community, and I promise to act more decisively in the future.