[freedomtowernight_edited.jpg] 26th Parallel: Get in Line, NAACP

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Get in Line, NAACP

I tipped Henry Gomez about this article in today's Miami Herald about racist reader comments left to the Herald site on an article about the case involving the boot camp employees from Bay County up in the Panhandle.

The comments were derogatory towards blacks, obviously. I agree that the Herald needs to do a much better job of watching the comment threads and not allow that kind of anonymous, chicken-shit crap from being published. The local NAACP's complaints, led by Bishop Victor Curry, have merit. However, derogatory comments are nothing new at the Herald site, nor do they stop at targeting blacks.

As Henry noted in his latest Herald Watch post and letter to Herald ombudsman Edwin Schumacher-Matos, Cubans get bashed after practically every Herald article involving Cuba, Cuban-Americans or Cuban refugees.

Here's a snippet from a recent comment thread:

Well, here is another boat load of cuban lobster trap poachers that wil (sic) be added to the welfare rolls-- but then the US Congress is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Cuban Amer. National Foundation.

Whatever. Brave Jim from Marathon may be some bored 30-year-old resident of Boca Raton for all we know. It's gotten to the point where I just shrug and say exactly what the first word of this paragraph says. Still, the Herald, just like any blog-owner, IMO, must watch over the comments being made and make sure that offensive garbage like that not get posted. At least, the people leaving behind these comments need to be kicked the hell out.

Bishop Curry, we know how you feel.

You just saw the evidence. Do you now believe Gyllenhall's quote that the Herald routinely monitors and removes offensive comments? I sure don't.

The Miami Herald. A once solid newspaper going further and further down the drain every day. And I've just reached my limit with them.



Blogger Brant said...

The comments at the Herald have gotten so out of control that it's gotten beyond pointless to even read them. But this isn't rocket science: The Herald should require registration, with a confirmed email address, in order to leave comments -- something that many major blogs and other papers have required for a long time.

10:18 AM, November 07, 2007  
Blogger Timothy said...

I agree it was totally out of control but the Herald encouraged it by not requiring registration. Of course all The Herald was really concerned about was the amount of click thrus on its ad pages. These would have been curtailed if it monitored and slowed down the postings. Money talks.

7:13 PM, November 08, 2007  
Blogger Jonathan said...

All that registration does is to discourage a lot of legitimate commenters and guarantee many registrations under bogus names and emails. If I want to read or comment on an article and am blocked by one of those patronizing "Registration is free and has great benefits!" pages, I usually won't bother. That can't be good for advertising impressions.

I don't think there is any substitute for a dedicated moderator. All the Herald has to do is hire someone for the task. They would do it if they were serious. It seems more likely that the people in charge either don't understand the Internet and don't want to make the effort to learn or aren't willing to spend the money.

8:20 AM, November 09, 2007  

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