If you want to get involved in the discussion online at your website

An end to anonymous commenting

Those who want to get into the discussion will how have to back it up with an identity

Next month nelsonstar.com is joining the trend away from anonymous comments on our site. Starting December 1 we will switch to Facebook’s commenting platform.

As is the trend in media, for the last few years our website has garnered more attention. As the popularity of finding news on-line grows, ome readers have raised concerns about one issue in particular:  the fact we allow visitors to post anonymous comments.

The policy has led to some unpleasant and mean-spirited postings. It’s also raised an inconsistency in our Black Press brand. Our community newspapers don’t print anonymous letters, yet we’ve allowed our websites to become a place where people can hide their identity while occasionally taking shots at one another.

Starting next Thursday, people will only be able to comment by using their Facebook account. This means their name, often even their photograph, will be linked to the statements they post.

Our website is not alone in making this shift. Several media companies, equally troubled by the vitriolic trend of anonymous comments, are turning to Facebook to power their website commenting.

All of Black Press in BC, Alberta and Washington State have made the switch. Our sister publications have continued to see spirited discourse among those who post comments, yet the discourse is at a much higher level, and commentators are generally well-mannered and on-topic.

This new approach won’t be perfect. People without a Facebook account won’t be able to participate in online discussions.

Still, we’re enthused to be in the vanguard of this movement. It shows we’re listening to our readers and responding. It places us more deeply into the powerful world of social media. By using Facebook comments, we’re embracing a social medium with 800 million users worldwide.

For those of you who choose not to create a Facebook account, remember we will continue to run letters to the editor in print (drop they by the office or email them to editor@nelsonstar.com).

So please continue to be a part of the discussion. Your comments are part of an important dialogue that enlivens and enriches civic life in our communities.

We attempted to answer most common questions at http://www.nelsonstar.com/commentfaq/

 

Just Posted

Leafs lose marathon season opener

Nelson fell 3-2 to Fernie in double overtime

Latest round of Columbia River Treaty talks wrap up in Cranbrook

Federal, provincial, U.S. and Indigenous representatives recently met for eight round of discussions

CHECK THIS OUT: Libraries as safe spaces for the homeless

Anne DeGrace writes about an upcoming movie and talk focused on libraries and homelessness

First Nations given max compensation for Ottawa’s child-welfare discrimination

2016 ruling said feds didn’t give same funding for on-reserve kids as was given to off-reserve kids

PLACE NAMES: Kaslo and Sandon neighbourhoods

Narrow valley saw Sandon’s main street over a creek

VIDEO: Vancouver Island mayor details emergency response after fatal bus crash

Sharie Minions says she is ‘appalled’ by condition of road where bus crashed

Federal party leaders address gun violence after weekend shooting near Toronto

One teen was killed and five people injured in the shooting

Conservatives promise tax cut that they say will address Liberal increases

Scheer says the cut would apply to the lowest income bracket

B.C. VIEWS: Cutting wood waste produces some bleeding

Value-added industry slowly grows as big sawmills close

Fewer trees, higher costs blamed for devastating downturn in B.C. forestry

Some say the high cost of logs is the major cause of the industry’s decline in B.C.

Federal food safety watchdog says batch of baby formula recalled

The agency says it’s conducting a food safety investigation

UVic president offers condolences after two students killed in bus crash

‘We also grieve with those closest to these members of our campus community,’ Cassels says

Coming Home: B.C. fire chief and disaster dog return from hurricane-ravaged Bahamas

The pair spent roughly one week on Great Abaco Island assisting in relief efforts

Most Read