To keep the comments as fresh and outstanding as they've been up to this point, we've commissioned Commenting Guru Rob Iracane to write a bi-weekly Comment Ombudsman column. It runs every other week. This is that week.
Mr. Iracane is the guy who approves and deletes comments around here, and the fellow to whom you should address any comment account requests, and he will explore issues involved in commenting, what makes a great comment thread, what's working, what isn't, answer your questions, so on. We want the place to continue to be as much fun as it is every day, and it's not an execution thread like our friends at Gawker do. We like to be inclusive here, because if we're not, we'd be forced to rely on our own wit and knowledge, and that's a scary thought indeed.
So here's this week's column, in which the Combudman in Chief addresses the Commenartiat and assures us that our threadly union is strong. Of course, don't be afraid to let him have it in the comments.
I come to you today to reassure you about the security of our commentariat. What happened last week was an unfortunate, but still isolated, incident. Rest assured that your thinly veiled biases and jokes about rape are still safe behind the ironclad protection of that clever little play on words you've created as your worktime alter ego. Chickens.
What's that? You have no idea what I'm referring to? Good. Let me explain in the most ambiguous way possible to protect the identities of the innocent:
Let's say that Writer A contributed a column to Deadspin and Commenter B left a comment on said column, to which Writer A took offense. So Writer A contacted the boss of Commenter B, whom we'll call Boss C and complained about Commenter B. So now Commenter B has retreated into the shadows because Boss C is monitoring his Internet usage. Commenter B was a longtime member of the Deadspin community and will be sorely missed. Deadspin Editor W got involved and kindly asked Writer A not to fuck around with his commenters anymore, and then politely asked Combudsman R to write a column about the whole incident, with this vital piece of information: Writer A already knew Commenter B's sekrit identity because they have a history of correspondence outside of Deadspin.
Does that clear it up? No? My point is: nobody has access to your personal information. Neither Will nor Rick nor I can identify you, nor would we if we were privy to your personnel file. As as tipster or commenter, your secret identity is safe so long as you don't share your information with the Deadspin world. So feel free to keep sending anonymous tips to Will and Rick about wacky goings on at ESPN; feel free to keep making rude comments about ugly people. The Deadspin commenting box should be a safe place for those of us who make our full names known and those of us who wish to remain anonymous.
These commenters, however, would shun their anonymity for a day to receive their Comments of the Fortnight trophies: