11 December, 2010

Why Higginbotham At Large Will No Longer Publish Reader Comments

I'm making way too many people mad with my requirement that they provide a real name - not a pseudonym or a CB handle - and some actual contact info so a few minutes ago I went into my Blogger settings and made a major change: only "members" of this blog may post comments to it. Since I am the only member, that means I am, in effect, no longer publishing comments. 

Not only am I making way too many people mad at me because I have been enforcing a "no anonymous or pseudonymous comments" policy but I'm spending way too much time explaining and defending this unpopular policy so the easiest thing for me to do is to simply stop publishing reader comments.

Most of the time my "no pseudonymous" comments wasn't much of an issue because most of my blog posts didn't seem to engender much reader comment. I think there were only three times in the history of Higginbotham At Large when my blog attracted much attention. The first time was about 18 months ago when I wrote a post in defense of gay marriage. The next time was during the run-up to the recent special election for Robert C Byrd's US Senate seat when the Mountain Partiers were sending my a lot of profanity-laced anonymous and pseudonymous comments because I said their candidate, Jesse Johnson, should drop out of the race and tell his supporters to hold their noses and vote for Dino Joe so Florida wouldn't have three US Senators with the election of John Raese. 

Right now I'm getting a lot of pseudonymous comments from members of a Yahoo atheist group who object to my 9 December post about what I called "hillbilly religion" and West Virginia PBS's gospel music programming. I had no idea that atheists like gospel music so much, but apparently they do. And for some reason they don't understand the meaning of the word "pseudonymous" and I'm just spending way too much time explaining the meaning of pseudonymity. 

Where did people get the idea that anybody cares about the opinions of people who won't sign their names to their hate mail? People who hide behind pseudonymity are attempting to escape accountability and consequences for their words and actions. If you've ever sent a letter to your local newspaper you know that newspapers don't print letters that are unaccompanied by a real name and some contact info.

Anyway, Higginbotham At Large apologizes to the Yahoo atheists. Send your hate mail to JosephHigginbotham@gmail.com - but sign your name or I won't read it. 

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Only identified commentators will be published. No pseudonymous or anonymous comments will be published. "Handles" and "screen names" are pseudonyms. If you wish to comment, you need to identify yourself or your comment will not be published.