In my mind, the best thing about Rain City Guide is that the site has grown into a wonderful community with a constant stream of interesting posts and comments. In no way do I want to mess with this!
However, I’m a slightly concerned with the rise in anonymous commenters on Rain City Guide because I’ve seen a few blogs and forums where the discussions degenerate once people start leaving anonymous comments in bunches. So far this hasn’t been a problem on Rain City Guide, but I don’t want to let things slip to the point where anonymous people (like Bob Cat, el nino, Milton Friedman) make others feel uncomfortable posting their comments.
Here are the options I see in dealing with anonymous comments:
- No change… Leave all non-spam comments on the site (anonymous or otherwise)
- Selectively delete anonymous comments that are clearly meant to antagonize or bait people.
- Try to preempt any issues by requiring that all posts be from people with a valid email address. I could check this by emailing anonymous posters after they leave a comment and if they don’t respond in a reasonable amount of time, I would delete their comment.
- Require people to register with Rain City Guide before leaving a comment. This would include an automatic email address verification.
If I was going to make a change, the purpose of the change would be to discourage degrading comments (before they start to occur) and to encourage people to leave comments with less chance of harassment. What do you think? Am I making much-to-do about nothing? Should we just assume that only people with a think enough skin are going to leave comments anyway?
I’m definitely interested in your feedback! (and feel free to comment anonymously… for now.) 😉