Wednesday 06 Oct 2021 | 21:06 | SYDNEY
Wednesday 06 Oct 2021 | 21:06 | SYDNEY

Email of the day: Comments policy


Sam Roggeveen


14 March 2008 09:33

Will Grant writes:

I've just signed up for your Interpreter blog posts via the email you sent — but you don't allow comments!  I really don't trust blogged opinions hidden behind comment barriers — it seems a little one sided to me. If you plan to change this, I'll happily keep reading your posts.  But if not, I'll unsubscribe fairly soon.

There are several reasons we've decided not to have open comments at The Interpreter. One is legal and reputational concerns. Media Watch has in the past revealed a instances of major media outlets inadvertently hosting racist comments in their blogs and forums. Of course, if you are vigilant, such stuff can be easily removed, but I'm the only person working on the blog full time, and I would rather direct my energy to producing more content.

Also, if The Interpreter did inadvertently host potentially defamatory or offensive material, as a prominent think tank, the Lowy Intitute is a tempting target for an individual, company or interest group that wants to test what are, at present, largely uncharted legal waters.

Last, I note that some other bloggers use an ‘Email of the day’ feature rather than open comments threads. It’s a more ‘old media’ model, but that quite suits us. The Interpreter is, in that sense, something of a blog/zine hybrid.