Sidepodcast - All for F1 and F1 for all

A quick word on moderation - Our policy on commenting and a request for patience

Published by Mr. C

We had a minor issue earlier today when a comment that went into moderation caused all manner of confusion. I figured that although we've been through the reasoning before, it wouldn't hurt to have a quick recap now the racing's all gone quiet.

Remember the name

I'm sure no-one needs reminding what Internet spam is, and why we like to keep this site free from unwanted marketing campaigns of any sort. In order to minimise exposure to spam we use a service called Akismet. It's free, simple to work with, and generally speaking it does an excellent job of keeping the place clean and tidy.

If there's one criticism that can be levelled at the service, its that it can be a little over-zealous when it comes to links. I've no idea what algorithms Akismet uses but we've done all we can to allow more linkage, yet it doesn't seem to make the slightest difference.

Presumably, there must be a reason for one link to be allowed but another not, but one can only guess as to what those reasons might be.

The exception to the rule

If you happen to post a comment that doesn't appear immediately, then it's likely gone into the moderation queue and we'll get to it as soon as we can. Given that one of us is often around these parts at any given time, that's usually pretty quick. We watch the queue like hawks, so it's unlikely we're going to miss a comment, and you don't need to do anything in terms of letting us know. We'll find the comment and un-moderate it as soon as we can.

The only time when this doesn't happen is when we're on-air and have several million other things to keep track of. In that instance comments get sorted as soon as we're done.

Making our lives easier

The flip-side to unwarranted moderation is the times when we intentionally remove comments. Luckily, that seems to only happen a couple of times a year and we'll let you know if we ever have to do that. Generally speaking though, if your comment goes south, it's not intentional.

Akismet really is the best compromise between keeping the place free from junk and allowing open discussion. Mostly it's worked well, but it is a third-party solution (and a free one at that), so, often there's very little we can do to affect what is and isn't considered worthy of publishing.

One final point to mention is that the Live Commenting, Live... Thing works differently. The whole system needs tweaking because edited comments don't ever update and any intentionally moderated comments don't disappear either. That's the main reason why the page carries a beta tag in the title.

Update: Totally forgot to mention, that comments on any posts (or pages) that were published more than ten days ago, automatically go into moderation. That's just an additional anti-spam measure that helps us out, and normally doesn't affect anyone.