from the treat-your-community-right dept
So I was actually surprised a few years ago when TechCrunch moved to switch all of its comments to Facebook comments, claiming that one of the good things about it was that it required you to provide your real name. Apparently that wasn't actually such a good thing for lots and lots of commenters -- as after nearly two years, TechCrunch has dumped Facebook comments and is pleading for commenters to come back.
Our comments are obviously far from perfect, but we've never been at a loss for having spirited discussions on nearly all of our posts. There's just something awesome about the community that likes to really dig into the various stories. That's part of why we've always viewed this site as a discussion site, rather than a "news" or "reporting site." We post stuff with our opinion because we expect people to respond -- good or bad, agree or disagree -- in the comments, and for some sort of discussion to ensue. That doesn't mean that we like to encourage trollish behavior, but we recognize that encouraging a real community has its benefits, and one key aspect to that is keeping the barrier low. Too many other sites seem to think the best way to deal with the messiness of some annoying commenters is to make it more difficult to comment. However, as TechCrunch has discovered, like chemotherapy, it's a solution that can kill off many of the "good" cells along with the "bad."