WEHOville WordPress Commenting Returns; Be Sure to Stay on Topic When Commenting

WordPress commenting has been restored to WEHOville!

As of today, the WordPress commenting has been turned back on.

While the tech guy was working out a bug with the WordPress system, we decided to experiment with commenting through a Facebook plug-in.

That experiment turned out to be a failure. Readers didn’t like the extra step of having to log into Facebook to register a comment. Some didn’t have a Facebook account, while others didn’t want Facebook tracking their activity.

Consequently, commenting fell off dramatically and many readers emailed me to complain.

In their emails, readers talked about the virtual town square WEHOville provides to discuss issues going on in town. Some saw this as the most vital function which WEHOville provides and were especially upset by the disruption to the commenting.

Others talked about how they felt less isolated because of the commenting, noting that is good to know others feel the same way they do about certain issues. They also said the connection WEHOville provides is even more important since people are staying home during the pandemic.

A few even talked about friendships they’ve developed that started via interaction on the WEHOville comments section.

With WordPress commenting functioning once again, it’s a good time to remind people about some rules of conduct and civil decorum:

  • Stay on Topic – Address the issue at hand and don’t veer off to into personal attacks, insults or accusations. I was far too lenient in approving some comments when I first started as editor and things were getting out of hand. So, fair warning, comments that attack/insult others will automatically be deleted.
  • Treat Others the Way You Want Them to Treat You – Ask yourself if you would like to be on the receiving end of a comment you’re about to submit. If the answer is no, then reword the comment.
  • No Profanity – Any profanity will automatically be rejected. Doesn’t matter how insightful the comment is, using the f-word, s-word, etc., means no one will ever read it.
  • Only One Screen Name Per Person – While commenters are allowed to post under a pseudonym, they must choose ONE screen name and stick to it. People found to be using multiple screen names will not see those comments approved (I check IP addresses regularly). Similarly, the email address used with that screen name should be valid in case I need to contact you.
  • Be Short and Concise – Keep your comments under 300 words. If you feel the need to write a longer comment, then consider submitting it as an op ed instead. You’ll get a wider audience with an op ed – far more people read the opinion pieces than read the comments section.  Submit your op ed ideas to me at James@wehoville.com

As always, thanks for being loyal WEHOville readers!

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Mike
Mike
1 month ago

I’m so glad, Now I can start putting my 2 cents back in.

Alan Strasburg
Alan Strasburg
1 month ago

I remain a vociferous critic of anonymity in public civil discourse, but if you can keep it on point and devoid of personal attack and insult, then let the public square thrive.

Steve Martin
Steve Martin
1 month ago
Reply to  Alan Strasburg

While I agree with Alan to a point, a number of people who are anonymous are neighborhood activists who want the freedom to be critical without suffering retaliation from City Hall. Historically some have been city employees or Board or Commission members that for various reasons want to be heard but not draw attention to themselves. Overall things have been relatively civil over the years despite the passions that City politics inspire. I like to think of these pages as one of those family dinners with a bunch of diverse family members where the conversation gets heated as the food… Read more »

David
David
1 month ago

Thank you and great to hear!

FJ1
FJ1
1 month ago

Very good to hear. I was one of those that stopped commenting.
Thank you.

Tom
Tom
1 month ago

Thank you!

Rob Bergstein
Rob Bergstein
1 month ago

Thanks James! I’d only add that in a more perfect world, you wouldn’t allow screen names & would require anyone submitting to use their legal name. Does the LA Times allow anyone who is commenting to hide behind a fake name? Nope. I think if your readers were required to use their legal name, comments would be far more on point & far fewer attacks. I’m just a say’n….

Vigilant
Vigilant
1 month ago
Reply to  Rob Bergstein

It should be the quality of the comment that matters. This is the bar used by New York Times, LA Times, Washington Post and others. While commenting on the NYT under my own name, I prefer not to do that in Weho because too many folks seem focused on individual emotion and that of cliques rather than substance and are inclined to get into meaningless tiffs. Commenting on well written articles should be a mind expanding opportunity rather than a narrowing one.

Steve Martin
Steve Martin
1 month ago
Reply to  Vigilant

I agree; let’s not take ourselves too seriously As much as we love WeHoville, it is not the LA Times. It is a great community paper and the comments really add to the experience. But if not using your name makes you feel more comfortable in joining in the debate, then by all means do what works for you.

FJ1
FJ1
1 month ago
Reply to  Rob Bergstein

In today’s world, people hunt others down when they don’t like/disagree their comments. They resort to all kind of tactics. There is no reason to use a real name as long as the comments made are on point, and not disrespectful to others commenting.

Manny
Manny
1 month ago
Reply to  Rob Bergstein

Well Rob, I guess you haven’t seen the very few LA Times articles with comments. It’s all anonymous screen names. Maybe you’re referring to the Letters To The Editor. But these are just comments (although some think it’s an opportunity for an Op-Ed) The fact remains, for the last 3 months due to the FB plug-in nonsense this site has had almost zero comments using real or fake names. It’s also moved away from micro local coverage, but that’s a different story.

Gimmeabreak
Gimmeabreak
1 month ago
Reply to  Rob Bergstein

In today’s cancel culture by those on the Left if any of us don’t toe the line of what is considered acceptable by whomever is making the most noise we can lose a lot! I would be considered right-of-center culturally and politically by most people in West Hollywood, although I am often surprised at how many I find who are just like me in that regard. I choose carefully with whom I share my thoughts on certain issues, so maintaining my anonymity in comments here is absolutely necessary for me to live at peace in the city I love. It’s… Read more »

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