I need to repost or create a permanent sidebar link to my too long-ago stated policy on comments. But for now:
1. Comments are moderated, mainly as a defense against spam, but also so I can keep a lid on trolling, flaming, thread hijacking, and just plain meanness. Sometimes I will edit for length, but that’s rare. Often I will add a link to a post you quoted or an article or book or movie you referenced. And regularly I will edit out profanity because my mother reads this blog. But not as much as I used to because she’s gotten hipper over the years or more resigned.
2. Pseudonyms are fine. But if you think you’re going to comment in the future, please pick one you really like and stick with it. This lets other readers get to know you and where you’re coming from, which makes it less likely they will take offense at something you didn’t intend to be offensive and more likely they’ll get it when you’re joking. It’s also a way of taking responsibility for what you write.
3. I don’t need to know your name but I would appreciate it if you included a working email address. Email addresses are never, ever made public. The reason I’d prefer you to use working one is that I may need to contact you to clarify something you put in a comment. It’s also another way of taking responsibility for your comments.
4. If you use a Typepad, Facebook, or other service’s profile, please give yourself at least a pseudonym and make sure there’s actually a way to contact you through it. And again, please use the same one every time. Be a person, in other words.
5. Please, always feel free to puff your own blog if you have one. Include your URL in the window provided. If you’ve written on the topic at hand yourself, tell us and provide the link.
6. Notice and try to remember the names/handles of other commenters. I’m lucky in having a number of regular commenters who have stuck with the blog for years and years. They make this a more interesting and smarter place to hang out. They’re good folks and when you get to know them I’m sure you’ll like them. The point is, though, if you make a habit of reading LanceMannion.com you’re going to bump into a lot of the same people again and again and just as in the analog world it’s a good policy to remember that people have lives of their own and their rhymes and their reasons. Treat them accordingly, that is, as individuals.
7. Proceed from the assumption that others have read what you’ve read and have thought about the things you’ve thought about and care about the things you care about, it just might have slipped their minds at the moment or they came to other conclusions or that they have other things worrying them.
8. Be civil, be polite, be understanding. Remember that most people cannot hear the sound of their own writing in their heads and make allowances. Remember that most comments are written on the fly by people who don’t have time to craft a little essay. Assume whatever makes you mad is the result of a mistake on the commenter’s part or on your own. People get things wrong and it’s ok to point it out, but keep in mind they don’t mean to be wrong, they don’t like to be wrong, and they’re usually not happy to find out that they’re wrong. In short, be kind and be gentle and be graceful.
9. You should feel free to tell me when I’m all wet, but there’s no reason for you to take it personally that I liked a movie you hated or hated a book you loved or that I don’t think the world is going to hell in a handcart for the exact same reasons you think it is. Everything I write here is just my opinion, so what do you care? I’m like Zaphod Beeblebrox. I’m just some guy, you know?
10. If you’re going to enjoy this blog you should know who Zaphod Beeblebrox is. Also, Sam Vimes, Gussie Fink-Nottle, Kilgore Trout, Newman Noggs, Sebastian Moran, and Stephanie Plum. And that the Duke of Oxford did not write Hamlet or any of the other plays.
11. Please read the whole post before commenting and try not to skim. I know time’s an issue and the intertubes encourage it, but I put a lot of time and thought and effort and care into my writing and I get really ticked off when I’m accused of saying something I didn’t say or told I should have made a point I did in fact make.
Welcome to all new readers! Thanks for stopping by. And thanks to all of you for reading the blog.