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Sunday, March 25, 2012

Online Comments Will Ruin Magazines

Nick Denton, Gawker media founder, claimed that fifteen years after everybody believed it would be great to allow readers to comment on every online news,this idea has appeared to be a big joke.

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Nick Denton, the owner of Gawker, Jezebel, Gizmodo, io9 and Lifehacker, believes that the very idea of capturing the intelligence of the readership was just a joke. The industry observers suppose that it’s because he doesn’t think his collective readers have any at all.

During his speech at SXSW, Nick Denton claimed that the comments left by the readers on his own websites, which have bought hacks to tears, were so bad that he didn’t engage. Denton told the press that for every 2 comments that sound interesting, even if they are critical, there will be 8 off-topic or simply toxic. With a site getting more and more popular, it becomes harder and harder to control the comments that inevitably get nastier.

Nick Denton admitted that he couldn’t think of any ideas that might have saved the current situation. Actually, he was quicker to shoot down ideas that others were trying than to introduce his own proposals.

Denton explained that editors and reporters didn’t have enough time to respond to readers in the comments. However, he also pointed out that the news publishers can’t force readers to reveal their real names since anonymity is the heart of the Internet. A democratic system with other commenters moving to upvote or downvote publications doesn’t work, according to Denton.

For instance, Jezebel would love to see American Apparel CEO Dov Charney come to the website and answer all the allegations of sexual harassment made against him. However, if the latter ever showed up, he would be voted off, as the site readers simply hate him.

Nick Denton is currently planning to publish some stories allowing only a hand-picked, pre-approved group of readers to comment on them. In fact, in reality he wants only sources and experts to be allowed to leave their comments in these discussions. Well, it seems that if he wanted some informed comment, he could probably ask Drashek to help out.

How do you think, the comments below our news are useful or unnecessary? We understand that it became the habit of our tracker users to come into conversation with each other and always-silent Sam, but is ability to comment really needed? Is it important that we answer your questions in comments or you are all right taking to yourself? 

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