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Some HBT commenting housekeeping

Apr 28, 2014, 1:30 PM EDT


Just two weeks ago I wrote a personal blog post about how, for all of the insanity, ugliness and poor taste of comments sections, they serve a useful purpose. Several useful purposes, actually.

There is a bit of community here among many of you, and I’m glad we can serve as a forum for that. As my landing on an unfortunate Buzzfeed list this morning shows — a lot of my own mistakes are caught by you guys and I’m glad when you point them out. You also challenge my thinking on any number of topics and I welcome that. This is HardballTalk, not Hardball Soliloquy. Interaction is important and it will continue. Comments aren’t going anywhere as long as it’s up to me.

But I gotta tell ya, a lot of you have been real jackasses lately. The crossing of racist, sexist and homophobic lines has increased lately. As has the violation of the more amorphous yet still important standard of simply not being obnoxious to one another. It’s entirely possible to disagree with someone else here without being a jerk. It’s a shame how many of you seem to have forgotten that.

As a result of this, we have carried out a few bannings over the past few days. A couple of them relatively regular commenters. There was no warning or notice to them as this is not a democracy and we can ban whoever we like. We just reached a tipping point with them. We will continue to keep an itchy ban finger for the time being because some people are making it unpleasant for the vast majority of people here who just want to talk about baseball and we won’t tolerate it.

That aside, our commenting rules are and will remain pretty permissive. We don’t shoot down comments or ban commenters simply for disagreeing with us. Or for being idiots. Or for using bad language. Or for being insensitive or controversial. It’s actually good when people argue or disagree about things or when others are taken out of their comfort zone. That’s when you learn things. And no one has the right to go through life without having their sensibilities offended from time to time. The last thing we want is for some phony level politeness, some hyper-orthodoxy or some brand of groupthink to rule the comments. Mix it up, and if you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.

But really people, clean it up a bit. Be civil to one another. Understand that what may wash in a thread under one of my posts may not wash for the other HBT writers and know that, if you act like a jackass, you’re going to lose your commenting privileges. As always, we won’t tolerate the following:

  • Racism;
  • Misogyny;
  • Homophobia or gay bashing;
  • Antisemitism;
  • Excessive personal attacks on other commenters.

This doesn’t mean you can’t talk about controversial topics. Or argue with people. But be adults about it.


378 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. sabatimus - Apr 28, 2014 at 10:05 PM

    At least the rules on here seem to be reasonable. On PFT, every time I write on something Florio posts, it’s deleted, no matter how relevant or polite. I think I disagreed with him once and he never looked back.

    • aresachaela - Apr 28, 2014 at 10:19 PM

      Don’t know this NFL thing, but judging by the fans of that sport they have emotions of a molten lava rock. XD!!

    • hateonlyhatred - Apr 28, 2014 at 10:20 PM

      Florio is a bombastic POS. Guys like him always get their comeuppance. He’s not nearly as smart as he thinks he is.

      • punksinplay - Apr 29, 2014 at 9:12 PM

        He’s not huh? He created and owns What have you done?

    • floriojr - Apr 29, 2014 at 7:33 AM

      I agree, it’s gotten to the point that every post I make , no matter the point of view is deleted by florio. Hence the name change . Once I changed to this name I never get deleted.

    • SocraticGadfly - May 1, 2014 at 11:13 AM

      They’re generally sensible. At least Donald Sterling won’t be in here any more. :)

  2. cowboysoldiertx - Apr 28, 2014 at 10:20 PM

    I’m pretty sure Tigger was a tiger but no one knew for sure. Discuss!!!

    • raysfan1 - Apr 28, 2014 at 11:14 PM

      A very unique tiger, the only one whose top is rubber and bottom is a spring.

  3. drewsylvania - Apr 28, 2014 at 10:35 PM

    FYI cur–CC just mentioned on twitter that he banned vivabear.

    • Kevin S. - Apr 28, 2014 at 10:44 PM

      Seriously? I ended up on SLB’s permanent s**t list for nothing?

      Ah, still worth it.

    • renaado - Apr 28, 2014 at 10:45 PM

      Vivabear? Why? Since when.

      • drewsylvania - Apr 28, 2014 at 10:49 PM

        Dunno–Twitter timestamp indicates that it was at least three hours ago.

      • Kevin S. - Apr 28, 2014 at 10:49 PM

        I don’t know what Craig’s actual tipping point was, but we called out his offenses on the first page of this comment section.

      • renaado - Apr 28, 2014 at 10:50 PM

        I see, guess vivabear is just beggin himself to get banned.

    • cur'68 - Apr 28, 2014 at 10:54 PM

      I know. I email with Old Gator once in a while. He told me. Glad that jerk’s gone. If you have a problem with someone deal with it up front from logic and not that disgusting crap he spewed.

      • nbjays - Apr 29, 2014 at 9:25 AM

        There are some lines you don’t cross. He crossed them and then tried to justify it by saying Old Gator was just as bad. Um…. no.

      • Old Gator - Apr 29, 2014 at 12:55 PM

        He grew up deprived and never learned how to use a grawlix. What a shame.

    • raysfan1 - Apr 28, 2014 at 11:10 PM

      Best news all day, drew, thanks!

      • groupofsevenrules - Apr 29, 2014 at 5:33 AM

        Here I am at three thirty in the morning wide awake again….I might as well make my insomnia useful and remark that I was very pleased to discover this. I suppose Craig is still making his way down the list, deciding who stays and who goes. I have no issues with his sselections so far. I think sewerbear is a deeply troubled individual but he was also compulsively vicious and disgustingly vulgar, hence his more appropriate nick-handle, I hope he gets help, but somewhere else. His comments lowered the tone and collective IQ of this place. I look forward to enjoying Gator’s weirdness and Cur’s humor without his gratuitous and endlessly monotonous gouts of gutter language appended to each one.

      • aresachaela - Apr 29, 2014 at 6:04 AM

        Oh oh! Please enjoy my cheerfulness and Ren’s seriousness too XD!!

      • nbjays - Apr 29, 2014 at 9:27 AM

        ” I look forward to enjoying Gator’s weirdness and Cur’s humor…”

        Or Cur’s weirdness and Gator’s humour. Both are good. :-)

      • drewsylvania - Apr 29, 2014 at 3:54 PM

        Don’t thank me, thank Craig!

      • raysfan1 - Apr 29, 2014 at 5:10 PM

        Thank you, drew, for passing the news.
        Thank you, Craig, for working to make this a more pleasant place to be again. It’s always been a great blog from Shysterball to Circling the Bases to HBT.

  4. tuberippin - Apr 28, 2014 at 11:31 PM

    dirtyharry tried too hard.

  5. Professor Fate - Apr 29, 2014 at 4:11 AM

    I just spent a rather enjoyable hour (yeah, slow reader…So?) absorbing this thread. Although I laughed more than I have lately, perhaps more than I should have, I still feel the need to go shower. Thank you all and good night.

  6. mackypinky - Apr 29, 2014 at 6:07 AM

    So Hateonlyhatred is using this as a format to hate and threaten people with opposing political views? This attempt at being shocking and offensive is so unsurprising. Is it convincing anyone to join his ranks? If I’m ever campaigning to change a small group of people’s political opinions, I’ll be sure to do it buried in a blog post comment roll as deep down as possible, all while insulting the intelligence of everyone I mean to influence. Real smart plan, eh?

    Also, baseball. Some people like it.

    • Kevin S. - Apr 29, 2014 at 6:27 AM

      Hey, careful now. You don’t want him to put you in the same class as cur’68 and (presumably now) me.

      • nbjays - Apr 29, 2014 at 9:12 AM

        Kevin. compared to hateonlyhatred, Macky could do a whole lot worse than being in the same class as you and Cur (and many others on here with intelligence).

        As for hateonlyhatred, I think his handle is correct, just missing punctuation. Based on the irrational vitriol he spews against “disgusting liberals” (I skew social liberal/fiscal conservative, myself), I see his handle more as “Hate! Only hatred!”

      • raysfan1 - Apr 29, 2014 at 9:14 AM

        Definitely take being lumped in with cur as a compliment.

  7. jerseydevi1 - Apr 29, 2014 at 9:33 AM

    Good Morning Everyone!

    Just wanted to say that I may not post as often as I read, but I have my reasons. I am very conservative by nature and believe that we need FAR less government than we have. I also disagree with 90% (as I perceive) of the political opinions that most regular posters espouse. I (try to) save those kinds of comments for the appropriate message boards that I belong to and not bring them here.

    That being said, I enjoy the back and forth (mostly) and love the baseball related comments. I will continue to hold back on my own inappropriate comments, and just hope that you would do the same. After all, that was the whole point to Craig’s initial post, wasn’t it? hateonlyhatred needs to tone it down as well. Can we not have at least one corner of the interwebs where we leave politics out? As they relate to Baseball is one thing, i.e. Hank Aaron’s comments, Chief Wahoo, etc. but to randomly throw it in just to upset each other (either way) just takes away from the overall experience.

    Feel free to comment on or “Thumbs Down” my opinion, I’m a big boy. I can take it. :-)

    p.s. Go Yankees!

    • jkcalhoun - Apr 29, 2014 at 10:06 AM

      I can agree that if politics aren’t relevant to the topic at hand, there’s no need to bring them into it, I can’t agree that a politics-free discussion is desirable. For one thing, baseball isn’t free of politics; why should our discussion of it be different?

      As for me, although I don’t agree with them, I don’t have any problem with your political comments here. The only thing I take exception to is that postscript. Might have been different if the Yankees had moved west instead of the Giants, but that’s a lot of water under a lot of bridges now.

      • jerseydevi1 - Apr 29, 2014 at 12:42 PM

        Thumbs up on the Yankees comment!

        Not necessarily disagreeing about politics in or out, just more a comment about how well I know myself. I tend to get passionate sometimes and would rather keep it civil. Sometimes I can get a bit preachy and I know that doesn’t go over too well.

    • [citation needed] fka COPO - Apr 29, 2014 at 11:37 AM

      Just wanted to say that I may not post as often as I read, but I have my reasons. I am very conservative by nature and believe that we need FAR less government than we have. I also disagree with 90% (as I perceive) of the political opinions that most regular posters espouse. I (try to) save those kinds of comments for the appropriate message boards that I belong to and not bring them here.

      It all depends on how you voice/write them, imo. I’d love to have a true conservative option in gov’t. You know, someone who believes in fiscal responsibility, which doesn’t mean cutting social welfare programs and increasing military spending. Someone whose ideas are to keep gov’t out of our private lives, but also means keeping gov’t out of our bedrooms. Someone who feels gov’t should be smaller, but doesn’t mean adding a federally sponsored religion.

      • Old Gator - Apr 29, 2014 at 12:53 PM

        I cannot imagine America without an air force that buys four thousand dollar hammers.

      • jerseydevi1 - Apr 29, 2014 at 12:59 PM

        I agree, COPO. I’d love to have a civil discussion, but it never seems to go that way. Baseball is my great escape from life, and I suppose I choose (mostly) to keep that going here. As I mentioned to jkcalhoun, I can get a wee bit carried away and I know it.

        As far as conservatism goes, if it isn’t in the constitution, the Federal Government has no jurisdiction. States are a different story, based on what their constitution says. If a State wants to fund the social programs, have at it, but it’s not the Federal Governments’ job. Defense is the Federal Governments’ job. They should pay for that. As far as the bedroom, who cares what someone else does? My beliefs come from The Bible, which in my opinion means that God will do the judging when the time comes, not me. Live and let live while we are here, life is too short for me to worry about that. If a State passes a law in that regard that I don’t agree with, I can always move but I personally think any level of government has more to worry about than who is sleeping with who.

        Dammit, I didn’t want to go off on a tangent like that! Anyway, let’s kick back and discuss the greatest game there is, Baseball. BTW, still the Nation Pastime. Pastime = Pass Time which is what Baseball helps us do during the summer. Relax and pass time. Not get all wound up about 16 games a year. Football may be America’s Favorite Sport at the moment, but Baseball still holds the National Pastime title.

      • raysfan1 - Apr 29, 2014 at 3:10 PM

        Jersey, I’m with you on every bit of it…except: Go Rays!

      • nbjays - Apr 29, 2014 at 4:52 PM

        You misspelled Jays… :-)

      • raysfan1 - Apr 29, 2014 at 5:12 PM


      • clemente2 - Apr 30, 2014 at 2:42 AM

        In view of the Pax Craigus, I will suppress my commentary inclination, and just ask jdevil to consider:

        A more perfect union
        General welfare
        Securing prosperity
        And the dis-spiriting paucity that confronted most Americans before the Progressives, the New Dealers, and Great Society-ists implemented those welfare programs.

      • jerseydevi1 - Apr 30, 2014 at 9:04 AM

        I see what you did there, clemente2.

        Nice try, but Article1, Section 8 and the Tenth Amendment make it clear what the Federal Government has authority over and what is left to the States. That the career politicians don’t seem to want to follow the Constitution is sad, that We The People allow them to is even sadder.

        Make sure you read my comments again. Not being crass, trying to clarify. What I said is that the Federal Government oversteps its’ authority on a regular basis. The States can pass many of these laws that you mention, if their constitution allows them to, however. The Federal Government simply does not have the authority to pass these laws.

        Nice handle, BTW. Always a big fan of Mr.Clemente. Particularly his work in Puerto Rico and the rest of Latin America.

      • clemente2 - Apr 30, 2014 at 7:21 PM

        Can tax and spend as necessary for general welfare–Article 1, Section 8, first clause.

        You I assume disagree on whether it is for the “general welfare”. Hard argument to win. In fact, it has lost regularly before all sorts of different Supreme Courts.

        Claiming Congress has overstepped its authority in such a situation seems more wishcasting for a particular political outcome than an argument about constitutional authority.

  8. punksinplay - Apr 29, 2014 at 9:14 PM

    We all know the rules. Quit whining already.

  9. jimeejohnson - Apr 30, 2014 at 7:57 PM

    Ain’t no time to hate.

    • 22yearsagotoday - Dec 24, 2014 at 1:12 PM

      To those losers who got banned: BEAT IT!

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