There seem to be many hubbers who have no published hubs and are still allowed to comment on other people's writing. While there are some hubbers who are simply new and asking questions before diving in, it seems that some people open accounts purely for the purposes of making comments, often nasty ones, on people's hubs (since guest users can be more easily disallowed).
Should hubpages limit the number of comments one can make if the hubber hasn't published at least one (serious) hub?
If you look on the political and religious forums, you'll see a fairly large contingent who sign up for HubPages just to use the forums, and they are usually people who feel strongly about the topic. They're bound to spill over to Hub comments, especially if you have posted on those forums and attracted their attention.
I do think changing your settings to "approve all comments before they appear" is the best approach. It means delayed gratification for the reader but it solves this problem, and problems like the recent spam attack.
If you leave it the way it is, even if you don't respond to the troll, he/she gets the satisfaction of seeing that the comment has appeared for a while, and imagining how distressed you are when you delete it. They'll keep coming back to annoy you again. If it simply never appears, there's less of a thrill for them and they'll give up eventually. Especially if you report them, which will get them banned. And IP addresses can be traced, you know.
Interesting suggestion. You can just moderate the comments and not approve them. Is that not sufficient?
HubPages is also a Community of readers. I understand if they are leaving nasty comments (they are probably likely to be writers who have a second account for commenting) that's one thing. However, shouldn't there be reader-only people in the Community?
Hi MickiS. I do think readers-only should be allowed, but perhaps they should have to pass a higher threshold, in order to eliminate what you described (people having a second, phony account just to leave nasty comments)?
I don't want to have to approve all comments before they appear. In my experience, only guest users and hubbers with no published hubs have posted inappropriate or nasty comments. When I started disallowing guest users to post, I started getting very similar comments from a new hubber with no published hubs (a little too coincidental and similar style). Perhaps this is an outlier, but perhaps there is a way to more closely monitor those hubbers and ensure that they are well-meaning and serious "readers-only."
There are a goodly number of site users who would support this sort of limiting in the forums as well as in comment capsules. Especially as it would throttle back the sock puppets created just for personal attacks and arguing.
In the past month or so, I've been getting weird and somewhat nasty comments from guest users. Nothing was so obscene or disgusting that I should make an issue of it. But I agree there should be some kind of limiting. I can understand people would come to HP to read, I wish I had more time to read, as I spend more writing. But if the commenter has no hubs, for perhaps a month or two, why not give them the heave-ho?
It seems to me that this would leave a genuine commenter in a lose/lose situation. Many hubbers allow only registered users to comment. So, wishing to comment they register--and still can't comment?
I would rather see a more proactive approach to banning trolls, and banning the IPs of repeat offenders.
I agree with psycheskinner. I would hate to see visitors sent to us by search traffic have to jump through hoops to comment. They are not always trolls or spam and some leave wonderful and insightful comments. It would be a writer's loss to lose these comments, because some Hubbers apparently can't get along.
I agree. I've had some great comments by people who aren't registered at all and would not want to deter them from giving input simply because they aren't writers.
I think the people who have registered and not posted articles probably did so thinking that was the only way they could participate. They are welcome to comment on my articles anytime.
But as many hubbers allow comments *only* from registered people, their hubs would essentially become closed to comments as soon as this suggested policy change occurred. People do legitimately register only to comment on these hubs,because it is their only way to do so.
I agree with the last two posts. Commenting should only be restricted to the extent to which individual Hub authors can do it at this time.
That said, I have to admit I am not quite impartial. I love rude comments, mostly because the ones I get are just plain silly. Once I wrote a hub about a trickster character in African mythology, called Anansi, and then out of nowhere I got a comment from an 'organic reader' that said exactly this: "Allah will destroy you." I have a feeling that this comment was left in all earnest and the person really wishes me to die, which is just plain amusing, IMHO.
If someone decides to write some rude comment about my writing, maybe I should take pleasure in the fact that I got to them? Enough that they actually took the time to leave me comments? I can understand a reader being angry and rude over an article, but as a writer, you can always ignore it, answer to it or delete it. What I can't stand are the readers who use the Forums for advice to their personal problems. At the most, these people have three Hubs in. Maybe zero. It's like, "Now that I'm here, you can help me with my love life. I'm not writing anything. Just answer my questions and give me advice for my relationship problems." And that's all these people do once they get the attention that they want. Oh, break out the violin while you're at it!!! They don't plan to write anything!
Thank you all for the great feedback and discussion.
I'm inclined to leave the comments the way that they are and allow you as authors to moderate your comments, delete the ones you don't like, and use your comment capsule settings to determine if its worth accepting comments from guest users.
Laura, thank you for the initial suggestion (and great discussion starter). Do let me know if you are not satisfied.
Thanks MickiS and everyone for the discussion. I guess I would agree that I don't want to bar legitimate commenters from posting. Perhaps just a more rigorous approach to identifying and eliminating trolls, as psycheskinner suggests above. I have some hubs that are more "controversial" in nature (e.g., commentary on Obama's decision to support same-sex marriage), and have actually felt somewhat cyberbullied/attacked - even though there is some level of anonymity, it is still not a comfortable feeling, and I would much rather spend my time writing and responding to interesting/thoughtful comments. Some of the comments left would be considered grounds for criminal prosecution if they were traceable to the source.
I don't get nasty remarks, but I don't think someone should have to have a hub(s) published to comment. It's normal to expect questionable comments on controversial hubs. While it may be a bother to moderate comments, it might be the easiest solution rather than setting more restrictions for those who comment.
The few times I've found an offensive comment, I've deleted it or ignored it.
some have brought some fun to the forums...haven't seen 'blondepoet 2' in awhile...he/she was fun!...made me smile! i can't remember whether or not they published anything - it didn't matter, i just luved the avatar!
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