Hello Readers of the Debito.org Blog. I created this blog on June 17, 2006 (as an offshoot of the Debito.org Web Archive, established April 15, 1996) not only as an information source, but also as a potential forum for readers to comment upon issues raised. I read every comment on this blog and consider them all for approval. Not all of them will make it through (in fact, about a quarter don’t, on both sides of the political fence). This page outlines the basic policy guidelines I use.
Aside from the standard deletions of spam and misleading links, people may wish to consider these before posting:
1) IS THE COMMENT MADE IN GOOD FAITH? DOES IT AIM TO CONTRIBUTE CONSTRUCTIVELY TO THE CONVERSATION? I delete comments which a) are “playing intellectual games”, and not interested in furthering the arguments raised, b) seek to create more heat than light by baiting other posters, c) offer unsubstantiated assertions and conclusions (so feel free to provide links — but if there are ANY misquotes, the whole comment gets deleted), d) outright lie, or e) just offer a zinger or a “I disagree and you’re full of it” type of throwaway sentiment. In sum, if your post will merely “cheapen the discussion”, I probably won’t allow it through.
2) DOES THE COMMENTER HAVE A HISTORY OF TROLLING, HERE OR ELSEWHERE? There have been cases of posters being banned for trolling and then coming back as a separate alias. Sorry, but one instance of trollery and you’re off Debito.org for good, regardless of whatever guise you take or constructive comment you may try to make later. Anonymity is one thing; deliberately trying to stir up trouble for sport by using the Internet as a cloaking device is another, and will not be tolerated here.
3) ARE THINGS GOING PURELY AD-HOMINEM? Some degree of questioning of a poster’s identity and intent is okay, but if it’s merely or mostly a personal attack, then into the dustbin it goes.
Breaking any of these rules could result in your IP address being banned or, in extreme cases, the e-mail address you entered and your IP address could be made public. This policy applies to both e-mails and comments.
(NB: This is an exact copy of Japan Probe’s posting guidelines. Seems to be becoming standard operating procedure.)
Since we have had issues of people being stalked by outside slam sites just for posting their opinions on Debito.org, I would suggest that posters create a unique moniker for use on Debito.org (I generally remember them) and continually post under it (don’t use the same moniker you use on other sites — the stalkers say they have cross-checked those too).
Three more things:
4) GRAMMAR AND SPELLING, PLEASE. I’m not Miss Manners here, but if you’re going to treat Debito.org as a BBS for throwaway comments, you’re not going to get through. Moreover, there are enough software safeguards for people who are not natural spellers. If you take the time to compose, proofread, and be thoughtful, you’ll most likely get your comment through.
5) POSTING LINKS: Please do (we often need substantiation), but please also include a quick summary of why we should click on this link and why it is germane to the blog post at hand. Just writing “this is interesting” with a link will not get through.
6) MY PERSONAL BELIEFS: Just because I approve a comment does not necessarily mean I approve OF its contents. You can see the rubric I use above, and matching my belief systems is not mandatory.
Comments should be posted in either English or Japanese, the only two languages I can read and consider, thanks.
If you’re not happy with these rules, sorry. This is my blog and I’ll run it the way I like. Meanwhile, don’t just stick to the blog — there is lots more (and less controversial) information in the original sections of Debito.org.
Final disclaimer: Approved comments do not necessarily mean Debito approved OF their contents or agreed with their arguments.
Thanks for reading, considering, and contributing. Dr. Debito Arudou