Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Some New Commenting Etiquette for Open Threads (Or, "On Hatey, Burke, etc.")

So, no one is more surprised or thrilled with the response this site has generated to the Open Threads. We're drawing, on average, more than 1,000 viewers a day to them (often 1,500 or more) and both the volume and quantity of comments have picked up appreciably lately. I find myself spending as much time reading the comments on MKM as I do on Deadspin.

But, with all things, there's a bit of bad that comes with all that good. And it's trolling. It's people coming here to anonymously rip on their fellow commenters with no context and no specifics. I've received a number of complaints from good commenters who feel that they've been unfairly ripped upon here, and while I think a lot of that is good-natured towel snapping, there's also no doubt that there's a shit ton of cattiness and sniping on here that is no good for anyone.

I don't hold myself above the voice of the readership here, especially in the open threads, which are quintessentially a public forum for chatting about whatever is on your mind. But I do have some responsibility as the only guy with a delete button to make sure comments here don't turn the place into Yahoo or something, so I'm going to put out some handy guidelines that will make both of our lives better by sparing me the need to ever delete some pathetic meaningless shit from this site.

(1) The goal of this site is to be a light-hearted place where a bunch of guys who genuinely like and respect each other can rip on each other in a way that evidences none of that. Roasting is great and a fundamental part of what this site does, just see our commenter profiles, all of which have been about good friends of mine (or me!). There is a line, though, between good-natured towel-snapping and shit talking people. Be mindful of it. I don't want to read unsupported opinions that [X] is a shitty commenter, and I don't think anyone else does either.  If you take issue with a specific joke that a commenter made, that's fine. Do it in a semi-respectful and (hopefully) funny/interesting way. Don't just talk shit about someone you've never met who you don't like for some idiotic reason.

(2) Feel free to question why a joke worked, or whether it was appropriate, or why you think it has a problem.  Ideally, do so with your name attached, like I do whenever I link to a dud.  Don't just come here to trash comments for no reason.

(3) Nothing genuinely hurtful - no racial/ethnic/personal slurs, no trying to expose the real identity of Shitehawk or a ninja or what not, no starting 10 Worst Commenter polls, etc.  This site is supposed to be fun for everyone.

With these new rules in mind, let's talk about Hatey and Tim Burke for the last time. You can take issue with the way Hatey sometimes lectures the commentariat, you can argue that his reputation outstrips his actual contributions, you can argue that he gets +1s today because of jokes he made in 2009, you can cringe at some of his harsher stuff, but fucking please, you cannot suggest that Hatey is LBabe-like. I'm certain I'm not his biggest fan, and even more certain that he's not the biggest fan of mine, but it is neither interesting nor accurate to come on here and be all like "DUH HATEY SUCKS DERP!!11!" And that goes for anyone else too, I just see Hatey getting a disproportionate share of it. Tim Burke, too. Dude is not a lawyer and misstated an area of the law that almost all laypersons misunderstand. Let it go. If you have a specific gripe with Tim Burke, by all means, share it, but shelve the fucking general Burke hate, okay?

So, that's that.  If you have questions, you may ask them respectfully in the comments, you insignificant fucks.

76 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. You're making fun of how IMG gives all the Deadspin writers a +1 for every damn post right?

      Delete
  2. Hatey isn't a dick because he lectures the commentariat. He is a dick because he lectures the commentariat and no longer makes any funny jokes.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm going to give you the benefit of the doubt on this one, but if I see anything like this after tonight, it's gone.

      Delete
  3. I thought we were going to stop making fun of shitty commenters!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You don't count because you never actually commented.

      Delete
    2. That's not what my husband says!

      Delete
  4. So now you're a ninja too? Boy there is some Echo in here.

    ReplyDelete
  5. IMG, your blog has the popularity of a runaway freight train. Why are you so popular? (This site exists as a clearinghouse for all the unaltered Simpsons references that don't belong on Deadspin, right?)

    Seriously though, +1. I haven't been around / contributed very long, so I don't have much substantive to add beyond that.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You're doing good. Don't hold back because you're new. Your opinion counts as much as anyone's.

      Except for MKM's.

      Delete
  6. Serious question: Can we all agree that anyone who emailed you to complain about what pretend people are saying about their pretend persona is a bitch?

    ReplyDelete
  7. My google alert goes off any time somebody posts the word 'suck.'

    Let's get to it, somebody drop their drawers. I got a lot of dicks to get to tonight.

    ReplyDelete
  8. One time, Hatey stalked and killed an opossum with his bare hands. He snuck into my bedroom, and while I slept, whipped me with that varmint's filthy, fleshy, ropey tail, while blasting Mastodon out of his eyes.

    It toughened my nips and was the most sensual experience of my life. It made me the man I am today, and for that I will forever be in his debt.

    Thank you, Hatey.

    Oh, and Tim Burke took a vidcap of some girl with fulsome bongos in the front row of a college basketball game, so that was neat.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Isn't it weird how this started as a gag, and now you're not only an Admin, but also a comment moderator? You're the establishment, man.

    I couldn't even have told you the difference between any of the editors until this Burke trolling started, so my final thought on the controversial subjects is:

    I wish that Hatey (and others who take this tact) would spend more time investing in the commenting community with +1s and encouraging replies and promotions. Just being a non-participatory joke sharpshooter is, to me, more offensive than crossing any edgy content line.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's a fair critique. No one likes people who only show up as authority figures without contributing much.

      But enough about my management of this blog.

      Delete
    2. Hatey is a joke-making machine. He was always like that.

      We've hashed out the +1 debate elsewhere but Deadspin commenting isn't about building a community, its about making hilarious jokes. If you want to foster a community during the day, do it somewhere else, or build a community in DUAN and keep it separate.

      Obviously its hard to prevent blurring those lines, but you should try. A guy like EMS is a perfect example. He does jokes and jokes only during the day, never gets into the "inside baseball" type shit but also bros down in DUAN every now and then. He's also pretty good about +1ing things. If you get a +1 from EMS, you know you did something pretty well.

      Delete
    3. WHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAT???????????????????????

      Delete
    4. (That's directed at BronzeHammer.)

      Delete
    5. @Cheese Mac

      I don't think it's worth getting into semantics over what "building a community" is, but it's pretty obvious that if you literally "are friends with" (whatever the merits of that function are) 0 people, and never +1, congratulate, and/or rarely promote, then you're not doing the thing that 99.9% of other frequent, high-profile commenters do. Deadspin commenting is a miniature society, and that's not just restricted to DUAN.

      I didn't mean that we should chat in the daytime, but the difference between that and being a pure joke sniper is obvious to you at least, since you point out EMS as an example of a great all-around commenter. EMS (and most others) aren't commenting as a masturbatory exercise, he enjoys making his e-pals laugh. I don't get why we're supposed to be hilarity automatons about this.

      @Anonymous

      I don't know.

      Delete
    6. I agree with BH's second post here. If "Deadspin commenting...is about making hilarious jokes" then promoting/+1'ing/heart-clicking goes towards that end. Hatey is notorious for NOT doing that. As had been said many times before, no one likes to play to an empty room, and I can understand why there would be some animus towards him for that.

      Of course, he's not obligated to, and he's also the same person who approved my account. How's that for a Catch 22?

      Delete
    7. @BH

      the only rule is to be funny. There's no rule that says you have to be a fuzzy amiable dog lapping up to every commenter just like there's no rule requiring every to be Hatey McLife. Just because you feel like it should be so doesn't make it so.

      We're supposed to strive to be hilarity automatons because that is how you get the purest comedy. You don't have people playing to crowds or making jokes that only a handful of people will get or discourage others from joining in because they're afraid of the cool kids table if there is no cool kids table.

      Hatey McLife makes jokes. 99.9% of the time he makes hilarious jokes. You call what he does masturbatory but I would counter that paling around with everyone to feel like you are part of some "in" crowd is just as, if not more, masturbatory.

      And, besides, lets cut the bullshit, we're all here for masturbatory reasons. We're on a blog about a blog for Christ's sake.

      Delete
    8. Put another way: If you want to tell me that Hatey is not funny, or creative or sharp as a tack, I'd love to hear your argument.

      If you want to tell me you don't like him because you don't think he's a nice guy, then I fail to see what that has to do with commenting on Deadspin.

      Delete
    9. @ Cheese Mac

      I want to address your points individually. I think you were a little uncharitable in your response.

      1. I didn't say it was a rule to +1 and back-pat. But it's incontrovertibly a norm. I'm not the only one that feels this way, because nearly everyone else observes this norm. It also isn't a rule that you can't be criticized for not following norms.

      2. I reject the premise that the purest comedy is unemotional and irrespective of one's surroundings (this is what I imagine an automaton would comment like). Many of DS's funniest threads are so-called comedy pyramids, which is something a robot wouldn't participate in. Playing to a crowd isn't the same thing as knowing your audience. You don't have to be pandering to be self-aware.

      3. I don't think "paling around" is an accurate representation of what goes on among commenters. Relationships are organic. You're naturally drawn to certain commenters, and for lack of a better term, become friendly with them. That's natural, and for me at least, is no more an attempt to fit in and justify my existence than making friends in the real world.

      As for what being a nice guy has to do with commenting on Deadspin, well, it has little to do with the content of his jokes. Why is "comment content" the only legitimate material with which to criticize a commenter? I'm not trying to say he shouldn't be starred or anything, just observing that he doesn't participate like most people. That may not make him a bad commenter, but frankly I find it difficult to root for someone who isn't rooting for me.

      As insignificant my feelings are to DS pageviews, I don't believe them to be so completely out of place in this forum.

      Delete
    10. 1.) "if you literally "are friends with" (whatever the merits of that function are) 0 people, and never +1, congratulate, and/or rarely promote, then you're not doing the thing that 99.9% of other frequent, high-profile commenters do."

      What is the point of this if not to serve as some sort of rule, personal or otherwise? Whether something is the "norm" as you term it is totally irrelevant as I could point out various "norms" throughout the history of existence that have come to be deemed backward, stupid and flat out wrong. My point about "rules" was that there's nothing compelling anyone to behave in any manner, other than to be funny and on that, I think Hatey is beyond reproach.

      2.) (a) Reject away. I find it absolutely hilarious that you bring up comedy pyramid making, though, when I think the proliferation of +1s is probably one of the things that have killed pyramid making. "Don't reply unless its a +1" I've seen said, etc. Regardless, you can participate in a comedy pyramid and still be a joke making robot, I've seen Hatey, among others, do it. (b) I didn't say comedy was unemotional and irrespective of audience, I said playing to a crowd (your other comedians, so to speak) is not always going to be funny. Take the Aristocrats joke. Does anyone, other than comedians really find it all that funny? No, it was an "in" thing in the business. This is what I'm talking about. Knowing glances, wink-wink, nod-nod type of stuff.

      3.) I said that it was hard to keep from blurring the lines and that we should try to avoid it. I have very good friends in real life that I have met through Deadspin. I get that.

      My purpose in saying these things is in response to, what I believe to be a ludicrous sentiment that Hatey McLife is somehow overrated. So, there's your comment content, I suppose. The only reason I have been able to see for that feeling is that people don't like him because he comes off as a jerk. Nothing you have said has disabused me of that belief. Root for him or don't root for him. It has absolutely nothing to do with whether or not he is one of the best commenters the site has seen.

      I don't see what significance or insignificance your personal contribution to Deadspin pageviews has to do with any of this. Say what you want to say you're more than entitled. I just think you're wrong.

      Delete
    11. @ Cheese Mac

      We're obviously pretty far apart here, so I'll keep it short.

      I think it's not ridiculous to assert that my "not rooting for" Hatey position is shared by other commenters. This is a reason many people feel he is overrated. I haven't been around long enough to judge whether he is or isn't, but I think it's fairly rational to find his misanthropic humor rote, especially given the context that his extra-commenting Deadspin personality (or lack thereof) provides.

      It's hard to relate to someone whose calling card is tasteless jokes when you don't get any other sort of communication. People like relating to other people, and their feelings influence their perception of a commenter's quality. This is just my guess, as I am personally able to separate my feelings about his joke-making abilities from my feelings about his participation otherwise.

      Delete
    12. I think saying someone is overrated because you don't like him, or "root" for him his ridiculous and is proof positive that the deadspin commentariat just may be going towards the dreaded circle jerk.

      Listen to what you just said. You don't think he's good, or as good as advertised, at commenting because you don't like his "extra-commenting personality." That is a problem.

      I don't know you, or how long you've been around, but you haven't been around long because Hatey is a ghost these days. He was a one comment a post commenter not that long ago, so if you had been around, you'd know his deal.

      It's annoying that I am coming across as some kind of Hatey McLife lover, but I just find it a.) crazy that people think he's not funny and, more importantly, 2.) disheartening that this kind of "us buddies know what's what and we know what's best," or "we make the comment section what it is" thinking is cropping back up again on Deadspin. If you don't know Hatey from his heyday, then I'm guessing you don't remember the "Purge" or what caused it--but it was exactly that kind of attitude.

      Delete
    13. Like I said, I can separate my feelings about his jokes from my feelings about his personality. I have no idea whether he is over-, under- or properly rated. I have laughed at some of his jokes, and not at others, like every commenter. I am personally not interested in congratulating him on his funny joke when I know that even if I posted a great one (maybe one day), he wouldn't congratulate me. If you think that's a problem, then I don't know what to tell you.

      Whatever the case, it doesn't affect my feelings about his current situation at Deadspin, which is: He is obviously smart and talented. He is not among my least or most favorite commenters.

      Don't take my feelings about Hatey as any sort of indication of what anyone else thinks. I'm just guessing, since you couldn't figure out why someone might dislike him, I was just saying I can see why. I don't speak for anybody.

      Delete
    14. cheese mac - I've consciously avoided wading into the Hatey debate, because it's not interesting to me, and who gives a fuck what I think anyway, but I wouldn't say that anything BH says is proof that the commentariat writ large is slouching towards some sort of circle jerk. It's one thing to say that a person's personality contributes to the effectiveness of their material - imagine Dane Cook trying to deliver Mitch Hedberg's catalog, it would be terrible - it's another to say that the site is inexorably headed to a bunch of cliques all +1ing their brethren and ignoring the excellent contributions of outsiders.

      That's not to dismiss your core point, which is that it's nonsensical to let your personal feelings towards towards someone affect your opinion of his/her comedy. I completely agree with that, and I'm not sure even BH disagrees. But I think it's a little premature to suggest we're all just slapping our friends on the back. I still think that, by and large, the best comments get the most attention, regardless of who is delivering them.

      Delete
    15. @IMG

      Yes, I agree with all that.

      Hatey's jokes are his jokes, even to me. I laugh or don't. I may be the only one who doesn't +1 him for a funny joke based on who he is. But to impeach me for not +1ing Hatey, of all people, would be pretty ridiculous.

      (Not saying cheese mac was doing that). Sorry for dominating this post.

      Delete
    16. To reiterate, this is in response to a general sentiment I've observed. You brought it up in response to the post, I saw it and responded. I don't care about you personally, or your ability to personally disassociate any part of your feelings for another person's joke making ability from their personality.

      I care about deadspin comments being funny and not a place where there is an "in crowd" seeking to get everyone in line with their way of thinking (i.e. "doing the thing that 99.9% of other frequent, high-profile commenters do" (a statement with which I could spend another couple hours disagreeing but that's neither here nor there)) because I think that is a bad way to foster funny comments. That's all I'm saying.

      Delete
    17. [5 minute impression of a rabbit acting drunk]

      Delete
    18. [Spins violently]

      Delete
    19. @IMG I didn't mean to imply that that was actually happening. Just that if this is how people are thinking, and approaching commenting and commenters then maybe the circle jerk rep is not too far off base. And I agree personality often adds to a person's repertoire or however you'd like to describe it. This is not what I've perceived, though.

      As it appears to me, and no one has yet to say otherwise, people don't like Hatey because he's not involved in all the other things, ancillary to commenting on Deadspin. They then use this as a reason to denigrate his commenting ability, or reputation as a commenter. That is what I have a problem with. He's being judged as a commenter for everything but his comments.

      @BH, My feelings on the +1 are pretty well known (cherish it, value it when giving it out) and, no, I was not suggesting you not +1ing Hatey McLife had anything to with our discussion.

      Delete
    20. @cheese mac Yup, agreed. It's important for everyone to remember that the first responsibility of every Deadspin commenter is to make funny comments, not friends. Of course, it's even better if you can do both, but funny should always come first.

      Delete
    21. Hey, 0 for 2 ain't bad, right?

      Delete
  10. Hatey McLife did it better, and more prodigiously, than probably any of us and if you're going to rip the guy, or anyone else, you should at least have the sack to put your name to it. I know there's no way to verify who anyone is when they comment here but it's fucked up--and cowardly--that there are people anonymously shitting on other people.

    If that kind of shit continues, all it will do is perpetuate the stereotype that the deadspin comments section is an exclusionary circle jerk of guys slapping themselves on the back and I can't think of any worse legacy for something that I insanely hold near and dear to my heart.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. At a minimum, I think we can all agree he has a great handle and picture combo -- maybe the best there ever was.

      Delete
    2. I agree, so take that "just a regular reader" who questioned my comments ever being funny. I've been starred about ten times!

      Delete
  11. Replies
    1. You're fucking fair game too, since you got banned and once suggested that Laura Logan deserved to get raped in Egypt because she was blond.

      Delete
    2. This might be the most Paolo.Lex comment ever: http://deadspin.com/5747182/swimmer-from-poland-strips-for-playboy-borderline-nsfw?comment=36401459#comments

      Delete
  12. Seriously, don't waste your time with a Worst 10 Commenter poll....it's been done.

    10-1 - Phin

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If it's any consolation, you're also 11-20.

      Delete
  13. IMG, thanks so much for your dedication to this bal, er, sorry, blog.

    Serious question. I know the commentariat at large does not support the posting of animated television show photos. In your estimation, what right do you have to dictate what comes and goes? Who died (not Kruger, not yet!) and made you crown prince? I think it's neither your right nor bizness to make such proclamations.

    In fact, I proclaim that you fondle deez nuts in yo mouth, sucka mc!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm giving you the bird right now.

      Delete
  14. Not to rub it in, but I did advise you to kill this in infancy, man. You watch-- now, like all parents' babies do, it'll grow up to kill you in your sleep.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That sounds so awesome. Are you offering to guest-edit?

      Delete
  15. I know you said not to do this, but I need to get this off my chest. I hate Raysism. He thinks he's so goddamn funny. Just because you get 25 +1s doesn't make you funny, even if it happens twice in a week. Just because you post something humorous on every thread doesn't make you a comedian. Just because you were an MBA favorite doesn't make you some sort of superstar. Just because you are the talk of DUAN, and get multiple PMs from today's top talent doesn't make you some sort of Deadspin celebrity.

    Sorry about that, IMG. Some extremely talented people just really rub me the wrong way.

    ReplyDelete
  16. I missed the hatefest, apparently, but I'm glad I'm not the only one who thinks etc. sucks.

    ReplyDelete
  17. This site was cool before it went all mainstream.

    ReplyDelete
  18. If this is my last chance to get it off my chest, I'm gonna say it now: Theodore Donald Kerabatsos is NOT that funny. He gets +1's on everything because of his reputation and because he sits back and only snipes in on some low hanging fruit every couple days. Not only that, but he rarely dishes +1's because, apparently, he thinks he's better and funnier than everyone else.

    He's not the funniest... he's not even close. He's an occasionally funny commenter with some sort of dick-sucking entourage that follows him around.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Huh. That's interesting.

      Look, dude, I have no idea who you are (since you're posting anonymously like a pussy) but I'm just here to make stupid jokes about dumb topics on a ridiculous blog. The last thing I'm trying to do is one-up anyone or "compete" with other people. Just here for the jokes.

      Delete
    2. Then why don't you encourage other commenters? Hell, why don't you post more than like 5 times a week? You must realize that you get +1's on some pretty weak jokes just because you got COTY and have some sort of reputation around here, right?

      Delete
    3. Dude, I don't control who gives me +1's... I just make the funniest comments I can. Could I give more +1's or participate a little more? Yeah. Probably. But I don't spend all day on Deadspin... I've got other sites to waste time on.

      Delete
    4. Your jokes all read like masturbation. Like you post them with some smug grin on your face and then just sit back, jam on the "all comments" button and wait for everyone to kiss your ass. You seem like the type of self-satisfied jerkoff who would create a persona to "tear yourself down" but really all you're doing is repping yourself even further.

      Delete
    5. Ohh... oh god, no. That's what I've done, isn't it? We're the same person aren't we?

      Delete
    6. Oh god. This is getting embarrassing. How do I stop doing this?

      Delete
    7. Now that is how satire is done. Just fantastic.

      +1

      Delete
    8. I am literally laughing out loud at this. If you're trolling (ie making remarks that you don't actually believe, for the sake of roiling people up) then, bravo. Well done, sport.

      If you really think that TDK is someone who goes for low hanging fruit, I... I don't know that you will ever get it. That is the absolute opposite of any possible criticism of the guy. Of all the fucking commenters who do NOT go for low hanging fruit, it is TDK. Yes, he infrequently comments, but the vast majority of the comments he makes are unique, creative and entirely original. Some of them may be weird, or not "jokes" with a clear punchline (Like his Michael Jordan's date's hat thing) but if that's not...

      God I can't believe that this is even a thing to be argued.

      HEY GUYS, I THINK THIS GRAVITY THING IS A HOAX. TOTALLY A SCAM AND ONLY EXISTS BECUZ POEPLE +1 IT. LEMME KNO WHAT U THINK

      He does dish +1s,

      Delete
    9. I was starting to get my dander up. Hook, line, sinker. +1 TDK (did you cum yet?)

      Delete
    10. God bless you, TDK. May you live a thousand years.

      Delete
    11. @BronzeHammer I look like a human Cinnabon right now.

      Delete
    12. Bring Back Anthony MasonFebruary 22, 2012 at 11:10 PM

      Such is the nature of the Internet that I also fell for that. Well done.

      Delete
  19. That was great.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Universal Enveloping AlgebraFebruary 23, 2012 at 12:29 AM

    I do not know where I fit into any of this discussion, which has concerned things that have never crossed my mind. Should they have crossed my mind? I'm not sure. But I'll keep trying to say funny things, which I've been doing a shit job of lately, but I'll get better.

    I am very drunk right now.

    ReplyDelete
  21. 1) Be funny
    2) Don't stomp on other people's jokes
    3) Being drunk usually helps

    I am good at one of those things.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Mangini In A BottleFebruary 23, 2012 at 5:12 AM

    I'm just happy to be here, guys.

    ...you invited me, right? RIGHT?



    Oh, uh, sorry - we don't carry more than $20 when we're delivering. If you've got a credit card handy, I can make a "swipe" real quick...

    ReplyDelete