I’ve been meaning to do this for a while but something has always gotten in the way. However, having seen and deleted the contents of yet another unacceptable comment posted on the site this morning, I think it’s well overdue that I provide an update on the house rules I’m applying for those who wish to comment here.
In doing so, it’s only fair to acknowledge at the outset that the vast majority of comments posted here are perfectly fine and that the site would be a hell of a lot poorer without them. I’m keen to encourage debate and interaction to the maximum extent possible and, by and large, this is, I think, working well. But it’s the age old problem of empty vessels making the most noise or, if you prefer another cliché, it’s the 1% who risk spoiling things for the other 99%. This message is, then, aimed squarely at this 1% and most of you know fine well who you are.
Two particular types of comments are causing problems of late and neither are going to be tolerated in any shape or form in the future. The first of these is the planting of rumours and “inside” stories about who said what to whom about whatever. I don’t care how impeccable you think your sources are, I’m not interested in how juicy the gossip is. All such comments will, from now on, be deleted in their entirety and those who post this kind of stuff will have to go through the full rigours of comment moderation before anything they have to say in future sees the light of day. Call it, if you will, the comment moderation naughty step.
The same goes for trash-talking players, of which a particularly nasty example was posted yesterday. As I’ve made clear repeatedly, it’s perfectly okay to critique specific aspects of a player’s performance on a given day but lazy-minded, generalised rubbishing of players isn’t.
While I’m in nanny mode, it would also be good, as a courtesy to other readers, to run your eyes (and, preferably, the spellchecker as well) over what you’ve just written before hitting the ‘reply’ button. Nothing posted here (including my own efforts) will ever count as literature but comprehensible English with at least some attempt at correct spelling and so forth would be a good start. Iz nt az ard as u mite tink – rite?
I first did a post on house rules back in June of last year so here, for the record, is the updated policy, one that I’d ask everyone to abide by. The vast majority of you already comply every time you post and all I’m asking is that the tiny minority who don’t fall into line. The only burden in doing so is to use some common sense.
Okay, here are the rules:
- Comments should not be of a kind that are likely to provoke, attack or offend others;
- Comments should obviously not be of a kind that break the law or encourage law-breaking of any sort;
- Generalised comments about particular players should be avoided, e.g. “he’s not/he never was any good”, “he’s not county standard”, “when did he last play well?” etc. When discussing a particular player, especially when critiquing a player’s performance, stick to specifics, e.g. “Player X is rubbish/no good/a big tub of lard” is out of order, “Player Y was bad the last day because he didn’t [add specifics]” is okay providing you’re expressing an opinion based on what you saw (or thought you saw) during a particular game, which others can, if they wish, challenge you on;
- When expressing a contrary view, don’t presume you know or invent any motivation for what the other person has said or make any inferences about their knowledge of the game, IQ etc. For example, phrases such as “only an eejit would say that”, “you must be saying that because …”, “you clearly know nothing about football” etc. etc are not acceptable.
- Bad language is perfectly fine, up to and including the bad ‘f’ word, but context is everything, e.g. “for fuck’s sake” is grand, “fuck you and fuck your mother” most certainly isn’t.
- Comments based on hearsay or rumour, in particular about supposed incidents involving management or individual players, are completely out of bounds and will not be tolerated under any circumstances.
- Those who fail to abide by the above rules will be obliged to go through comment moderation before any further comments from them are allowed to go live on the site. Repeated offences will lead to blacklisting.
- I reserve the right to add to or amend this list at any time at my absolute discretion.