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Creating a Commenting Policy

Inspired by NaBloPoMo writing prompt for Monday, June 2, 2014:

Do you have commenting guidelines for your readers? Today is a great time to let them know the commenting policy for your blog (or set some new expectations).

I have been very, very fortunate – at least to date! – in terms of the comments I’ve received on my posts. Even when my readers may have disagreed with something I had to say and presented an alternate viewpoint, the discussion has always remained respectful… and because of this, I have never had to delete a comment or develop any kind of formal commenting guidelines for my blog.

I am truly grateful for this fact!

But this writing prompt has made me think about the idea of developing a commenting policy for Alphabet Salad. After all, I realize that it would be far better for me to prepare myself ahead of time instead of being taken off-guard and flailing about trying to figure out what to do when the first nasty comment shows up in my Inbox (as I am sure, this being the Internet and all, will eventually happen)!

So let’s do this.

Alphabet Salad Commenting Policy

  1. To keep Alphabet Salad as a spam-free zone, all comments will be filtered through a spam filtering plugin (currently Akismet). Additionally, the first comment from each new commenter will be moderated. Once their first comment has been approved, subsequent comments will be posted immediately.
  2. Commenters are welcome to share a link to their latest blog post via CommentLuv, or a link within their comment to a post or page that is relevant to the topic being discussed; however, any comment that I perceive to contain advertising or spam will be edited (to remove the advertising or spam only) or, if that is not possible, deleted entirely.
  3. To foster dialogue and build community, commenters will be given the option of being notified via e-mail when a response to their comment is posted.
  4. To show my appreciation for each reader who takes the time to comment on one of my posts, I will personally respond to every comment.
  5. Depending on my schedule, I will endeavour to visit my commenters’ most recent blog post and return the comment. (This doesn’t – can’t – always happen, but I do my best.)
  6. Comments expressing dissenting points of view are welcome and encouraged, provided they (and any subsequent discussion) are presented in a respectful manner.
  7. My desire is for Alphabet Salad to be a welcoming community and safe space for all. As such, any comment I perceive to contain threats, abuse, personal attacks, obscenity, defamation, or hate speech directed at any race, colour, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, ethnicity, age, religion, or disability will be deleted immediately.

So there we have it! I’ll add a link to this post on my “about” page for my readers’ reference, and may add to or edit my policy in the future as things evolve and new ideas surface.

Do you have a commenting policy on your blog?
What would you add to my list? Please share!

NaBloPoMo June 2014

Laurel Storey, CZT – Certified Zentangle Teacher. Writer, reader, tangler, iPhoneographer, cat herder, learner of French and Italian, crocheter, needle felter, on-and-off politics junkie, 80s music trivia freak, ongoing work in progress.