Probably the most prominant new feature on the blog this year have been the Game Threads that we’ve been posting, and judging by the hundreds of comments each one receives, they’ve been pretty popular. We’re happy to provide a place for everyone to discuss the game as its going on, something of a virtual sportsbar, and we intend to continue posting game threads for the forseeable future.
However, as you’ve probably noticed, the last two days, we have felt the need to close down the threads after some of the commentary got out of hand. The tone of the threads has gotten progressively worse as the team has hit its slide, and multiple posts have had to be removed. Unfortunately, as the game threads have degenerated, it’s meant significantly more work for us in trying to keep an eye on all the comments and eliminating those that fall outside the lines of the comment guidelines.
So, consider this a preemptive strike and a call to raise the level of commentary in the game threads. This blog is not, for better or worse, a message board where you are free to say what you will. There are a ton of places you can go if you really feel the need to attack people and act like a 5 year old, but the USSM comments aren’t one of them. The point of the comments, even in the more laid back game threads, is the exchange of ideas and commentary about the subject of the post.
So, in the spirit of making the threads both more enjoyable to read and easier for us to monitor, here are some things we’re going to ask of you guys that we will enforce to the best of our abilities:
1. Punctuation and some semblance of grammar aren’t optional. Writing four sentences without a period is just painful to read. Don’t use all capital letters. Don’t omit capital letters when necessary, either. This is pretty basic grammer, and while it may seem pedantric, it’s a basic fundamental of communication. You are posting for thousands of other people to read. Make it easy on them. Punctuation isn’t exactly time consuming to add to your comments.
2. Personal attacks will get your posts deleted. It doesn’t matter who they are aimed at. Whether it be someone in comments who said something you don’t like, one of us, someone on the team, you don’t have the right to impugn anyone else’s character. You can disagree with their point, but when it crosses the line to discussing their qualities as a person, your posts will be removed.
3. This is more of a suggestion, but when responding to a comment from a previous post, it is often a good idea to quote a portion of the thought you’re responding to. I prefer the italics method personally, but your mileage may vary. If you’d like to make it easier to people to see what you’re responding to, use the html tag of emphasis, which is “em” followed by “/em” offset by <> on each line. So, it’d look like < .em>quoted material here< ./em> (without the ., which I used just to get the actual tags to show on the site). This isn’t required, but I figure some of you guys may find it helpful.
Basically, what we’re asking is that you make our job easier and improve the quality of the comments in the threads. Don’t inflame others, don’t attack people, and make your comments easy for other people to read.
Edited to add a primer on a few html tags that work in wordpress, as requested in comments
All of these have the same < ...>text< ./...> format.
Block quote: blockquote-/blockquote
To link to another webpage, use the following: < .a href="http://www.pagehere.com">description of page< ./a>. As before, omit the periods.