Civil. Polite. Reasonable. Three words that are far from being synonymous with the average internet comment-section discussion. Sad, but true.
The more popular an opinion hole (‘comment section’) is, the more trolling, ranting, name-calling, feet-stamping and general tantrum-throwing you can expect to find.
Our own comment section is fairly lively. Now, we like lively (I mean, just look at our name!) but to prevent lively turning into a terse troll-haven a few basic ground rules are required.
The House Rules
We have a small team of moderators who we trust to use their own good judgement to keep the comments section amiable, accessible and approachable.
By commenting you agree to abide by the following set of (fairly simple) rules.
Show respect. It’s a small word, but a big ask. Engage with fellow commenters as you would in real life. It’s fine to disagree or debate a point raised but do so in an intelligent and civil way. If you don’t your comment may be flagged for deletion.
Don’t swear too much. All comments pass through a filter list of swear words and are queued for approval if they contain one. While the odd bit of fruity language can add emphasis or underline a witty remark, do not to rely on expletives to get your point across. People of all ages, cultures and temperaments read the site and we want them to feel welcome.
Comments with too many naughty words may be edited or not approved at all. It’s easier for us and faster for you to simply not swear in the first instance.
Debate/banter is fine but personal insults, flippant attacks and derogatory comments, whether about a commenter, author or the site in general, are not acceptable. Sexist, racist, homophobic, transphobic, or ageist comments will not be tolerated and may result in an instant ban.
This is not an attack on your right to say what you want — you still can elsewhere — but is our right to not be platform on which you say it. After all, you can’t plaster Macy’s in posters for an Etsy store and shout at customers for not shopping there. Same applies here.
To offer constructive and thoughtful feedback on the site, our content, or an author you can use our contact forms.
Keep knowingly offensive religious remarks out of comments. We appreciate that there are many words in everyday use that only upset a pedantic minority, so try to use them in the right context.
Keep comments on-topic, either to the post in question or to the thread in which you’re replying to. This helps ensure that discussion is structured, relevant and accessible. Comments that try to hijack, derail or walk the comment section in a different direction may be deleted.
Try to help one-another, not get one up, show off or score points.
Whilst we do appreciate people taking the time to kindly point out typos or errors in articles we do typically delete such comments after the errata in question is corrected – it’s not personal, it just stops readers commenting later on from being confused (i.e. replying with “there is no typo!!!11”)
Any comments deemed inappropriate will be deleted or edited at our discretion. While not ideal, we also reserve the right to delete replies to deleted comments, entire threads, or close the comment section for entire articles at any time to help maintain an ordered and friendly atmosphere.
If you’ve posted a comment and it’s not showing up don’t jump to the worst conclusion. Your comment may have contained a banned word, expletive or questionable link and may be awaiting moderation. We can’t always tend to the comment queue right away, so try to be patient.
Finally, if you see a comment that you think breaks our code of conduct you can click the flag button next to it. When a comment is flagged a set number of times it will be removed from view and placed in moderation.
These rules are non-negotiable and may be amended at any time. Our commenting code of conduct can always be found at omgubuntu.co.uk/commenting-conduct.