I don’t have a comments policy, because I expect people to just know how to properly comment on a blog. However, once in a while I have to make a few clarifications. Recently there have been some comment threads shut down, and I have been seeing some comments come in that make me cringe. It’s time to address a few points.
- I expect you to follow my lead in terms of the tone of your comments. If I’ve written something lighthearted and silly, then feel free to be lighthearted and silly in the comments, and don’t worry about going off-topic. If I’ve written a serious post about something like violence or homophobia or rape culture, then I expect people to respect the topic and know that is not the sort of post where you start chatting to people about your pets or favourite recipes. (I’m not saying someone did exactly that, that is just an illustrative example.)
- This blog is for thoughtful, nuanced dialogue, and we handle controversial topics with maturity and sensitivity here. Commenters are welcome to share opposing viewpoints as long as they are engaging sincerely with the topic and demonstrating that they want to have a thoughtful conversation. I expect commenters to respond with courtesy to people with opposing viewpoints without yelling or attacking. I will not host comment wars, so when people start fighting I will simply shut down the comment thread. If you are posting comments that are inflammatory and unnecessarily judgmental, defensive, or hostile, you are likely contributing to the end of a conversation, so please don’t do this.
- If I see you posting comments that are likely to start an argument that will not be productive, then I will put you in moderation.
- FtM commenters are allowed to comment here as long as they’re interested in having a thoughtful conversation with a gender critical community. (Of course, if someone is just here to call me a hateful bigot then I will not be posting their comments.) If you are a Totally Excellent Real Female and see an FtM comment, assume that I have approved of this comment being on the blog and that this is a person you should respond to with the same courtesy you would anyone else. Absolutely no yelling at FtMs.
- I reserve the right to put someone in moderation even if they are a long-time commenter if I feel they are not following these guidelines.