News outlet Reuters announced yesterday the service was removing the comment sections from its news posts (one can still rant on the blog). Included in the statement is a subtle reference to Why We Can’t Have Nice Things, aka trolls, and some suggestions of other healthy ways to interact with the information Reuters provides, including Twitter and Facebook.
**Finally, some reason. Hopefully all news outlets will follow suit. It isn’t profitable to have trolls dirty up the “after the scroll” bottom of the page.**
Here’s the short but sweet announcement, in full:
During the past few years, much has changed about how readers interact with news. They find coverage in diverse places and in new ways. They watch video, use graphics and calculators and relate to content far differently than in the past.
Considering these dynamics, Reuters.com is ending user comments on news stories. Much of the well-informed and articulate discussion around news, as well as criticism or praise for stories, has moved to social media and online forums. Those communities offer vibrant conversation and, importantly, are self-policed by participants to keep on the fringes those who would abuse the privilege of commenting.
We still will host comments on our opinion and blogs sections of Reuters.com so columnists and readers can exchange ideas on interesting and controversial topics. Readers can join the conversation about all Reuters journalism on Facebook, at http://www.facebook.com/reuters, or on Twitter, where our handle is @reuters. And, as always, you can notify our editors of errors or technical problems by using the support link.
We value conversation about the news, but the idea of comments on a website must give way to new realities of behavior in the marketplace.The best place for this conversation is where it is open to the largest number of participants possible.
Executive Editor, Reuters Digital
Hat Tip to veteran journo and photog Jim MacMillan via Facebook
Original Photo by Kai Screiber on Flickr, modified by Christine Cavalier