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Comment Censorship Echo Chamber

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posted on Nov, 21 2017 @ 01:14 PM
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Most of the comments sections are nothing more than sophomoric, vitriolic bickering filled with hate and ignorance.

They do well to eliminate or moderate them.




posted on Nov, 21 2017 @ 01:18 PM
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originally posted by: fiverx313
that's so funny that you mention the root, because when they were asking for advice on improving their site a few years ago, i suggested they should eliminate or moderate their comment section because of the huge amount of racist garbage trolls they had attracted.

not to say you're one of them, of course, but it was a massive problem that made the comments sections pretty much unworkable, imo.

you might be happy to know that they're hosted elsewhere now and they have a comments section. there does seem to be some degree of community moderation but i'm sure that if you're just debating constructively that won't be a huge problem for you.


I don't recall a lot of outright racist comments at the root. Sure debates could be heated, but it I don't recall any substantial number of comments being racists. What I recall is the race card being thrown around when someone didn't like or couldn't refute what was being posted. In other words, I can't beat you with facts so I am just going to say it is racist.

It is ironic because you can go to the Root right now on any number of articles and find all kinds of comments that are derogatory towards whites and blacks who disagree.
edit on 21-11-2017 by Edumakated because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 21 2017 @ 01:20 PM
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a reply to: Edumakated


difference....NYT can get sued for false statements, right-wing bloggers don't



posted on Nov, 21 2017 @ 01:23 PM
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originally posted by: Edumakated

originally posted by: DanteGaland
a reply to: Edumakated

Because it's a hate-fueled free for all on right-leaning sites.

Liberals don't BOTHER with Fox and Brietbart. No NEED to censor there. Russians and useful right-leaning idiots FLOOD more liberal sites however constantly.


This basically sums up why liberals are often in an echo chamber...


I like to read FACTS about what actually happened. Not DOOM PORN by partisan hacks and outright entertainment personalities like ALEX JONES. WHo, has, admitted he's FULL OF CRAP in court.

So, excuse me if I'd rather just AVOID the BS sites filled with misleading and outright lies (who are caught CONSTANTLY but ignored by their fans).



posted on Nov, 21 2017 @ 01:26 PM
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a reply to: Edumakated

If you "cared" about facts you'd DITCH Russia Today, True Pundit, Breitbart and Infowars dude.

Seriously. It's not "opposing views" because facts don't have "views". They're facts.

So either read something that's factually true or not. Up to you. But don't PRETEND that those sites are "factual".



posted on Nov, 21 2017 @ 01:27 PM
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Thing is, so much of what gets posted on any news/sports/entertainment etc etc article is total drivel that has been seen all too many times before, to the power of a million.

It adds nothing but notches to some boggle-eyed comment obsessive's keyboard.

And it needs moderating so that new readers to the site dont see these morons and then assume that the site is only read by retards and subsequently take their ad clicks elsewhere.



posted on Nov, 21 2017 @ 01:43 PM
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a reply to: Edumakated

It is not an appeal to authority because I listed why those places are more credible..

An appeal to authority is when you envoke the appeal to authority without evidence..with only the appeal being your evidence..

My evidence is that

A) they do not even have people who investigate stories..

They have commentors who do not even usually claim to be anything else...


B) for every instance of wrong doing on those media places, I bet there are thousands of stories where they were doing their best to tell the truth.

C) I bet you can find an instance where someone was fired for it , in most of those famous news bloopers..

D) If you watch any “top ten times the news VERIFIABLY LIED” YouTube videos , about 7 of those are from the Bush years concerning Iraq.. aka not a liberal conspiracy..

E) Look at Brian Williams.. he just lied in a BS personal story, yet was roasted..and fired as editor and chief of memory serves..

At the same time Bill Oriely faced the same thing with some tale of the Faulkand war that he just INSANELY over blew.. claiming he rescued his camera man and everything, yet he didn’t miss a show, nor even really cop to it..


All news sources are not created equal and the media is not even one collective group to even be collectively, intentionally biased.


And an unintentional bias is what’s known as their opinion..



posted on Nov, 21 2017 @ 01:55 PM
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originally posted by: Edumakated
I don't recall a lot of outright racist comments at the root.


lol uhuh... just the more subtle racist ones?



posted on Nov, 21 2017 @ 02:02 PM
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Those who decry the loss of commenting need only look at this thread to see why. The petty partisan bickering creates a hostile environment for anyone who wants to post a succinct comment. It's just one, big squabble. Further, these privately-owned web sites are NOT obligated to provide readers a forum to act out on. It's not your "right to comment" in the first place, so it's not a matter of censorship. It's just that these sites don't particularly care what you have to say on the subject. That you feel passionate about something is largely irrelevant. Practically speaking, it's a waste of time to comment. When you have thousands of comments on any issue, everything that needs to be said has been said. Your additional comment on the issue adds nothing to the discussion. In other words, you're not that important.



posted on Nov, 21 2017 @ 02:15 PM
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originally posted by: schuyler
Those who decry the loss of commenting need only look at this thread to see why. The petty partisan bickering creates a hostile environment for anyone who wants to post a succinct comment. It's just one, big squabble. Further, these privately-owned web sites are NOT obligated to provide readers a forum to act out on. It's not your "right to comment" in the first place, so it's not a matter of censorship. It's just that these sites don't particularly care what you have to say on the subject. That you feel passionate about something is largely irrelevant. Practically speaking, it's a waste of time to comment. When you have thousands of comments on any issue, everything that needs to be said has been said. Your additional comment on the issue adds nothing to the discussion. In other words, you're not that important.


Most of the places I visit really don't have massive comment sections. Heck, my local paper was lucky to get 20 comments. I'd venture 15 were real comments while 3 may have been spam or outright trolling. Truly controversial articles might get 75 comments. It wasn't like they were trying to say monitor a thread like on here with 750 comments.

I see it as attempting to censor. Yes, private businesses can do what they want, but I think it is deeper than that. I've noticed it from Google manipulating searches, you tube demonetizing videos, and comment sections being locked down. All with a decidedly liberal bias mind you. I think there is something larger going on.



posted on Nov, 21 2017 @ 02:20 PM
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a reply to: fiverx313

The problem is that for a lot of people these days, hatred and racism are simply synonymous with "disagree with me." That isn't to say that there aren't real racists, but at the same time, I've often been called racist and accused of being hateful for simply disagreeing a number of times in various places.



posted on Nov, 21 2017 @ 03:00 PM
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originally posted by: Edumakated

originally posted by: schuyler
Those who decry the loss of commenting need only look at this thread to see why. The petty partisan bickering creates a hostile environment for anyone who wants to post a succinct comment. It's just one, big squabble. Further, these privately-owned web sites are NOT obligated to provide readers a forum to act out on. It's not your "right to comment" in the first place, so it's not a matter of censorship. It's just that these sites don't particularly care what you have to say on the subject. That you feel passionate about something is largely irrelevant. Practically speaking, it's a waste of time to comment. When you have thousands of comments on any issue, everything that needs to be said has been said. Your additional comment on the issue adds nothing to the discussion. In other words, you're not that important.


I see it as attempting to censor. Yes, private businesses can do what they want, but I think it is deeper than that. I've noticed it from Google manipulating searches, you tube demonetizing videos, and comment sections being locked down. All with a decidedly liberal bias mind you. I think there is something larger going on.


You may see it as liberal bias, but since most msm sites are liberal biased anyway, that would be the default. MSN itself has banned comments, and it affects a lot more than just politics. I was stymied recently when one of their sites published a quite erroneous article on the Chevrolet Corvette. They got so many facts wrong that it was painful. The author quite clearly was not familiar with the subject matter, but we could not comment to refute the article. Regarding YouTube demonetization, if people would refrain from their potty mouths, a whole lot less would be demonetized. That same language would not be allowed here on ATS, for example. The initial run-through with YouTube is a bot that listens for keywords and often returns false positives. The YouTubers that I hang with always ask for a human review and the stuff gets put back on, but only after thousands of views have been lost and aren't counted. And I agree with Google. I don't use them except very rarely when other stuff has bombed out.



posted on Nov, 21 2017 @ 03:12 PM
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a reply to: Edumakated

There's three issues at work here, and all taken together create an echo chamber. This is actually something that from Trumps campaign rhetoric I was hoping he would address when he brought up all the fakeness in news. But then he went in a totally different direction.

Basically, the first issue is not just trolls but paid commenters on anything political. It only costs $50/hour or $220,000 (for 12 hour story coverage, go slightly higher if you want 24 hour with lower staff in off hours) to pay a group of 5 college students to sit around, monitor news sites for updates, and post comments, creating the appearance of consensus, giving your side the first word, the last word, and the top voted comments. That's across every news agency. Compare that to the cost of a years worth of an advertising campaign. It's a bargain and easy for organized groups like political parties to do. In fact, I bet that if we have comments in 2020, this will be done by volunteers fighting the good fight for their side rather than the low wage employees previously used.

The other part to that issue is trolls. Sometimes a small organized group can comment on an article and add legitimacy to something that's ordinarily poorly sourced, not credible, or worse outright meant to mislead. This is part of the weaponization of information.

The second issue has to do with marketing. By promoting specific comments rather than anonymous ones, they can lower a persons guard and make them more receptive to the information. This creates a feedback cycle where people will come back for more.

The last issue is one of image. The sites publishing this content want to look better, and therefore will manage comments on their content so that it's all supportive.

Unfortunately, none of this is illegal (and really, I'm not sure that it should be illegal), but it has basically destroyed the concept of community feedback and I don't think it can ever come back unless we remove anonymity from the internet and make people publicly accountable for their words. But then if we go down that route, we eliminate the idea of pen names, which have historically been proven to be a very valuable way to allow people to criticize.



posted on Nov, 21 2017 @ 03:19 PM
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originally posted by: JoshuaCox
A) due to trump there has been a massive influx of trolls to he right side of the conversation. People who will not debate a topic logically, but instead go straight to the BS propaganda/ad hominem attacks..


It's not just Trump, that's part of it but communities like the_Donald are just hatefilled trolls that want to rally around being negative. Before being on t_D they were on fatpeoplehate and jailbait. They also had a huge crossover with incels. Then there also happens to be a lot of overlap with 4chan as well, and oddly enough with gaming websites after the whole gamergate fiasco. It's just a bunch of negative people rallying around visible pillars to their community, and by community I mean, places to troll.


None of those have news desks or investigative reporters.. they are just compilation sites that copy paste other peoples stories after twisting them to their own personal political bend..


News websites are no longer about publishing news. It's about publishing opinions that people already agree with. Interestingly enough, a bunch of blogs will involve writers who write for both sides. They'll take the same story, promote it with a few word changes to make it sound positive or negative, and publish the same content under two different names. It doubles their revenue for nearly the exact same amount of work.

20 years ago, spin doctors picked a side. Now they just spin the same story in different directions for each side, and let people believe whatever they want to believe. Media, and especially news these days is about reaffirming a persons choices that they chose correctly by showing them what they already accept as being true. Not reporting facts.



posted on Nov, 21 2017 @ 03:20 PM
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originally posted by: Ohanka
They think they can control the flow of information on the internet.

They are sorely mistaken.


They don't have to control the flow of information, they just need to push you to sources you'll accept.



posted on Nov, 21 2017 @ 03:23 PM
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a reply to: Tearman

Quite easy to do.

www.reddit.com/r/the_Donald
www.reddit.com/r/politics

Those are basically the defactor left vs right leaning political subreddits.

It's pretty easy to see the change in tone between both. You won't get the deleted comments that way, but you can see what each talk about.



posted on Nov, 21 2017 @ 03:27 PM
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originally posted by: scraedtosleep
I will always be on the side of private business rights.
If a business wants to censer their comment sections and you don't like it , well so what? Big deal.


It's not quite that simple, because we've given a handful of companies (Google, Amazon, and Facebook mainly) effective control over the information we get. While they don't specifically choose what we see, they push us to our next click. The result of this, is that it's digging people further and further into echo chambers and radicalizing each population. And once we do that, we start treading into national security and law enforcement concerns. Regulation of social networks is almost certainly needed.
edit on 21-11-2017 by Aazadan because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 21 2017 @ 03:39 PM
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originally posted by: Aazadan
a reply to: Edumakated

There's three issues at work here, and all taken together create an echo chamber. This is actually something that from Trumps campaign rhetoric I was hoping he would address when he brought up all the fakeness in news. But then he went in a totally different direction.

Basically, the first issue is not just trolls but paid commenters on anything political. It only costs $50/hour or $220,000 (for 12 hour story coverage, go slightly higher if you want 24 hour with lower staff in off hours) to pay a group of 5 college students to sit around, monitor news sites for updates, and post comments, creating the appearance of consensus, giving your side the first word, the last word, and the top voted comments. That's across every news agency. Compare that to the cost of a years worth of an advertising campaign. It's a bargain and easy for organized groups like political parties to do. In fact, I bet that if we have comments in 2020, this will be done by volunteers fighting the good fight for their side rather than the low wage employees previously used.

The other part to that issue is trolls. Sometimes a small organized group can comment on an article and add legitimacy to something that's ordinarily poorly sourced, not credible, or worse outright meant to mislead. This is part of the weaponization of information.

The second issue has to do with marketing. By promoting specific comments rather than anonymous ones, they can lower a persons guard and make them more receptive to the information. This creates a feedback cycle where people will come back for more.

The last issue is one of image. The sites publishing this content want to look better, and therefore will manage comments on their content so that it's all supportive.

Unfortunately, none of this is illegal (and really, I'm not sure that it should be illegal), but it has basically destroyed the concept of community feedback and I don't think it can ever come back unless we remove anonymity from the internet and make people publicly accountable for their words. But then if we go down that route, we eliminate the idea of pen names, which have historically been proven to be a very valuable way to allow people to criticize.


I know we don't always agree, but appreciate your insightful comment. I can't say I disagree with your analysis.

I live in a very liberal town. Maybe 60,000 residents. We have one news outlet. The paper used to allow anonymous comments and a few people would definitely get rowdy, but by in large I always felt the comments were mainly respectful. The conservative commentators definitely wipe the floor with the editors especially on issues like gun control, etc.

They moved to a Facebook verified commenting system. The biggest issue is that this effectively stifled conservative commentators as well as those who may have opposing thoughts on some local political issues. The town is so liberal that it is difficult to be an vocal and open conservative. This is the kind of town that would vandalize your home if you put out a Trump or any kind of Republican sign in your yard.

A lot of the people who would comment anonymously don't want to be known for having opposing view points. Especially those of us with businesses, etc. It was a really sly way of stamping out opposing viewpoints. Now all the comments mostly just agree.

It is what it is though.



posted on Nov, 21 2017 @ 03:51 PM
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a reply to: Aazadan

Just look at redit to see how people manipulate things to push things up or even worse, how they down vote things into Oblivion there. It's pretty obvious manipulation.



posted on Nov, 21 2017 @ 03:56 PM
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a reply to: Edumakated

Yes I've noticed that too. I had to get off of FB mainly for how people were threatening my business for my stances on things, people who mind you, would never have even used said business. It happened once on one of those FB verified sections too.




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