By and large this blog gets fewer comments than many others, particularly EUReferendum, but what there is tends to be of high quality. Sometimes people agree, at others they do not; sometimes they pursue the line raised in a posting further, at others they mention related issues; sometimes I reply, at others there seems no point in it as the comments stand by themselves or a discussion develops between readers. All well and good.
My policy on comments is quite straightforward. They are not to be used for advertising of any kind, not even promoting blogs that are not relevant. A reader saying about a UKIP posting that this is very interesting and here is what he or she said on the subject is absolutely fine. That is part of the dialogue and neither I nor any other blogger can keep up with every blog so we are grateful for links. But a reader saying about a posting on Russia, for instance, that this is very interesting and here is a link to his or her blog on sportswear is deleted on the spot (or as soon as I see it). That is advertising
I do not mind disagreements, criticisms or attacks though I draw the line at overtly personal comments, open racism and anti-Semitism as well as conspiracy theories. 9/11 Truthers or World Government obsessives in any form are discouraged from posting and if that does not work, deleted. I am happy to say there have been very few of those in the history of this blog possibly because they see it as being unimportant. May that last.
There is another rather pestilential incursion and that is the Anonymous attacker. In the past I have made it clear that I shall ignore people who have not the guts to put a name to their posting, especially if it is an attack on the blog or on me (the Boss can look after himself but on my blog he, too, is defended). I understand that some people prefer to use their initials or some other moniker on the internet or the blogosphere and consider that to be a signature as well. Some of those people occasionally tell me in private e-mail who they are and that is fine, too. It has also been drawn to my attention that sometimes people seem to be unable to sign into the blogger comments, something that I can neither explain nor understand. But it is perfectly reasonable for someone in that position to sign a posting or a comment. None of this is Anonymous within the meaning of the word. However, people who think it is acceptable to attack while hiding behind complete anonymity are not people one wishes to have any dealings with. They are, not to put too fine a point on it, contemptible. They should be ignored though I may well, in future, simply comment on such a contribution to point out that here is another cowardly anonymous attack. Or I may ignore it. We shall see.