Commenting Issues on IPR

There have been a number of complaints recently about comments on IPR.

The biggest issue that bothers me is the claim that people are posting under the names of others, making it look like one person is saying something else.

I’m thinking about requiring people to login in order to comment. I believe this would prevent posting under someone else’s identity.

I would allow people to remain anonymous and even allow people to have multiple accounts (maybe 2 or 3 at most but I’m flexible). We would have to work out how to protect anonymity but I’m sure we can get that done.

Others have expressed concern that requiring login will be difficult for some. I doubt that’s a serious issue but will hold off for now.

Please comment on this post so we can discuss the idea.

This entry was posted in Uncategorized on by .

About wredlich

Warren Redlich is CEO of SpinJ Corporation, which became owner of IPR in November 2012. He was the 2010 Libertarian candidate for Governor of New York, and has run for office as a Democrat, Republican, Libertarian, Green, and Liberal.

108 thoughts on “Commenting Issues on IPR

  1. Thomas L. Knapp

    One way of making it easier to participate, while still requiring a login that increases the difficulty of running a whole bunch of accounts, is using a WordPress plug-in like “WordPress Social Login.” That would allow people to log in using their already existing Facebook, Twitter, etc. account instead of having to have yet another account, yet another user name, and yet another password just for IPR.

  2. Andy

    “I would allow people to remain anonymous and even allow people to have multiple accounts (maybe 2 or 3 at most but I’m flexible). We would have to work out how to protect anonymity but I’m sure we can get that done.”

    Some of these problems will still exist as long as people can use IP anonymizers. Get rid of the posters with IP anonymizers and then people can be held more accountable for what they say (and note that in addition to people posting here, falsely claiming to be someone else, there have been false criminal accusations made, as well as other lies or distortions, and even death threats).

    If a person is going to come here and threaten me, or falsely accuse me of a crime, or otherwise slander me with lies and distortions, then I want to know who that person is.

    I have no problem with debate, even if debates get nasty sometimes, but I don’t like people posting things under my name, or making threats, or making false criminal accusations, or otherwise posting lies or distortions meant to slander, while hiding behind fake names and IP anonymizers.

  3. Great ideas

    By the way, happy birthday to IPR, and a very, very unhappy birthday to pauli.

  4. wredlich Post author

    “Some of these problems will still exist as long as people can use IP anonymizers.”

    Actually that’s the point. This would allow people to use anonymizers and remain anonymous, but prevent them from posting under someone else’s name.

  5. wredlich Post author

    >>using a WordPress plug-in like “WordPress Social Login.”< <

    That’s a possibility. But:

    1. I’m not sure that would really prevent what we’re concerned about.

    2. Plugins create hassles. Over the years I’ve found fewer plugins is better. (Are better?)

    3. I also worry that such plugins will slow down IPR.

    “That would allow people to log in using their already existing Facebook, Twitter, etc. account instead of having to have yet another account, yet another user name, and yet another password just for IPR.”

    Most of the commenters on the site are heavy users of IPR. Having an account on IPR is a trivial burden.

    Still not sure we’re doing it, or that we’re not doing what you suggest, but I don’t find your suggestions persuasive. Let’s see what others say.

  6. paulie

    We had comment registration in 2008. We had a lot less in the way of troll problems then, but it’s also possible a bunch of trolls just had not discovered us yet too. One thing we did have is people who had technical problems with signing up. It’s likely that some of those just shrugged, went away and never came back. The first time I tried to register to comment here it did not work and I shrugged and went away until someone persuaded me to try again a few weeks later. I don’t think trolls who are motivated to spend hours stirring up shit here will be deterred by spending a few minutes registering to comment here or for that matter setting up new social media accounts so they can troll here either. I’ve dealt with trolls on facebook also and believe me, they have no trouble rolling new “socks” when they start getting ejected from places.

    Comment volume did not change significantly when we got rid of comment registration at the start of 2009 so I don’t think it will make a huge difference either way.

  7. paulie

    Some of these problems will still exist as long as people can use IP anonymizers. Get rid of the posters with IP anonymizers and then people can be held more accountable for what they say (and note that in addition to people posting here, falsely claiming to be someone else, there have been false criminal accusations made, as well as other lies or distortions, and even death threats).

    There are good reasons to be anonymous. To take the most obvious, we sometimes get whistleblowers here.

    If a person is going to come here and threaten me, or falsely accuse me of a crime, or otherwise slander me with lies and distortions, then I want to know who that person is.

    I know who at least some of them are. Doesn’t help me though.

    I have no problem with debate, even if debates get nasty sometimes, but I don’t like people posting things under my name, or making threats, or making false criminal accusations, or otherwise posting lies or distortions meant to slander, while hiding behind fake names and IP anonymizers.

    I don’t like it when they do it using their real names either, such as Eric Dondero and Ryan Ramsey. So the problem is the threats, false accusations and distortions, regardless of whether it is anonymous or not.

  8. paulie

    By the way, happy birthday to IPR,

    +1! Article coming up…sometime today.

    and a very, very unhappy birthday to pauli.

    Considering the source, thanks!

  9. Andy

    “wredlich Post author
    May 20, 2017 at 10:53
    ‘Some of these problems will still exist as long as people can use IP anonymizers.’

    Actually that’s the point. This would allow people to use anonymizers and remain anonymous, but prevent them from posting under someone else’s name.”

    Getting rid of those who hide behind IP anonymizers would hold people more accountable for what they say.

  10. paulie

    We’re not getting rid of anonymizers, but we are going to get rid of those who abuse them. For starters, “great ideas” is no longer welcome here as of right now.

  11. NewFederalist

    I am for anything that prevents someone impersonating another poster. I personally do NOT use social media so using a login from Facebook, Twitter etc. would do nothing for me. I don’t mind logging in to post. I would hope one would not have to login to read comments.

  12. Andy

    If you do not get rid of IP anonymizers, you will not get rid of the troll problem.

  13. paulie

    You can beat that dead horse all you want but we are not getting rid of IP anonymizers. For starters, not all trolls use IP anonymizers. Nathan Norman uses T-Mobile, including when he posts as me, you etc. Some comments which are just like the anonymous troll attack comments are posted by verifiable, real people such as Ryan Ramsey. There would be too much collateral damage if we could get rid of anonymizers. And ther are many, many anonymizers, most of them with multiple IPs each. For all of these reasons, all of which we have told you multiple times, we will not get rid of IP anonymizers.

    Personally I wish you would stop beating that dead horse, although telling you to do so is like talking to a brick wall.

  14. wredlich Post author

    “I would hope one would not have to login to read comments.”

    Login would not be required to read comments. Only to comment. See the image at the top of the post.

    “If you do not get rid of IP anonymizers, you will not get rid of the troll problem.”

    Perhaps we will not completely eliminate the troll problem, but requiring login to comment would dramatically reduce the problem.

    By the way Andy, the second biggest complaint about comments on IPR is that you are making it very unpleasant for everyone else. I’m hearing it from multiple people – probably not who you think by the way.

    If you don’t find a way to calm down and tone it down, I’ll have to start thinking about that. Like the beating a dead horse thing Paulie just mentioned (and he’s not even one of the ones complaining about you, at least not to me). I actually like some of your comments and I haven’t looked at all of your comments in depth yet.

    IPR is a community. If a problem starts to drive people away, IPR suffers as a whole. Since I own IPR, that means it’s bad for me, even if I’m mostly an absentee landlord. (Does this make me a slumlord? Am I like the bad guy in Rent?)

    So when I hear a lot of complaints, I have to think about whether I need to do something.

    I hope everyone plays nice for a while.

    I’m still not doing anything about logging in to comment yet. Keep the comments on this thread coming and we’ll see. So far it’s pretty positive so we might try it out for a week or two. But no decision made yet.

  15. Carol Moore/Secession.net

    I certainly would be annoyed if someone posed as me!

    Plus maybe signing in will make people think twice about if they want to keep these ABSURD back and forth’s going. The stupid posts eventually drive out any willingness to read the good ones. I just subscribed to another yappity yap between same 2 or 3 guys on nonsense. Geez.

  16. steve m

    “By the way Andy, the second biggest complaint about comments on IPR is that you are making it very unpleasant for everyone else. I’m hearing it from multiple people – probably not who you think by the way.”

    I consider Andy to be one of the more amusing and entertaining characters of IPR…. So those that complain about his comments might just try skipping past them.

  17. Just Some Random Guy

    Is it possible to set it up so that people can set up an account OR comment without one? If we do it like that, then anyone who doesn’t want to be impersonated can just set up an account which makes them impersonation-proof because no one else can log into their account to post, but still allows people who might prefer to post without having to sign up.

  18. DJ

    Logging in every comment is fine, but, I don’t do face book, or twitter and won’t just to be able to comment.
    That’s the main reason I don’t comment on many news stories.

    I have no complaint with Andy either. But, those who continuously attack him personally are annoying as hell not to mention childish.

  19. Andy

    If people do not want to read my comments, or any other comments for that matter, hey are free to skip them. Nobody puts a gun to anyone’s head and forces them to read a post. I am not going to appease a bunch of crybabies.

  20. LG

    WR_”The biggest issue that bothers me is the claim that people are posting under the names of others, making it look like one person is saying something else.”

    I think that happened when “andy” said he and I had sex 1 time on another thread. First I thought ‘ya whatever , friggin liar ,then I thought ‘ well you do drink alot…’ then the comment was gone….

  21. Andy

    “LG
    May 20, 2017 at 21:52
    WR_’The biggest issue that bothers me is the claim that people are posting under the names of others, making it look like one person is saying something else.’

    I think that happened when “andy” said ”

    One tactic that the government trolls here have used is to post things under my name, or Paul’s name, or another poster’s name, in order to stir up controversy and create more infighting. These posts are unacceptable, and were rightfully taken down. These posts are also a good argument for banning IP anonymizers.

  22. Deran

    I’m all for logging in to comment.

    If Andy did not post lots of long long comments it would be much easier to skip over them.

  23. paulie

    Is it possible to set it up so that people can set up an account OR comment without one? If we do it like that, then anyone who doesn’t want to be impersonated can just set up an account which makes them impersonation-proof because no one else can log into their account to post, but still allows people who might prefer to post without having to sign up.

    That already exists. The problem is that without registration someone else can post with the same screen name if they know the person’s email address so it’s not visible to the reader if they are someone who is logged in or not.

  24. paulie

    These posts are also a good argument for banning IP anonymizers.

    How so? They were not made from IP anonymizers. Give it up already.

  25. From Der Sidelines

    Here’s a better idea:

    Put on your big boy pants, grow the hell up, and learn to deal with reality. Yes, trolls and impersonators happen. So what? That’s life.

    Some of us (like me) prefer to maintain anonymity so we can speak our mind without fear of any retribution from the wimps who can’t handle straight talk. Those wimps are the real problem because they get offended over the littlest things and need their binkies and adult coloring books.

    Requiring an account isn’t going to solve that, either. It’s a waste of time. Fake email accounts happen, too.

    Just leave things be and learn to cope.

  26. dL

    Perhaps we will not completely eliminate the troll problem, but requiring login to comment would dramatically reduce the problem.

    From the time I’ve been on here, the identity impersonation problem likely only stems from a couple sources. It is either a poster impersonating himself or someone w/ a vendetta against the poster. Login w/ registration email verification might not prevent that in this instance. Login w/ sms verification would kill it. But it is overkill.

    Simple diligent moderation policy likely will handle the problem here. Just as diligent moderation handled the problem of alt-right nationalist spam. Delete the impersonation spam. It generally only occurs in sporadic bursts. But also delete any accusatory spam that follows. IMO, indulging in the latter is probably the motivation for the former. Simply enforce that straight forward policy. No exceptions. I think the problem then would then resolve itself pretty much.

    RE: VPN Usage
    For the most part, the identity impersonation here is not using a VPN. One reason I suppose is that the people generally being “impersonated” do not use a VPN. duh!

    NOTE: One does not get “rid of” IP proxying. In the early days of the public internet, the technique was mainly the province of the skilled hacker. As time has passed, the technique has approached becoming more like a consumer good in the method of VPN. VPN not only shields your geo-location data from third-party prying eyes, it also shields your browser history from your ISP. In a post-Snowden world, it has become a recommended practice, endorsed by virtually all privacy/civil libertarian groups.

    Note: Not to mention, there is no effective way to administering banning VPN access w/o having the address profile data of the user on file(way too many of them now to maintain a blacklist). If a logged on user’s IP geolocation data doesn’t match the address on file, then prohibit usage. But no one does that, not even financials/banks. Instead they will issue a two-factor challenge to authenticate. Then again, sensitive sites only use session logins. No persistent logins supported by non-expiring cookies.

  27. Joe Buchman

    From Der Sidelines @ May 20, 2017 at 23:24

    “Here’s a better idea: Put on your big boy pants, grow the hell up”

    Ditto that. That said, it’s Warren’s site and he can do whatever he wants with it. I’m grateful it exists, have no problem skipping things I’m not interested in, and will likely be able to continue to find value and be grateful with whatever new system is put in place, if any.

    But again, I agree with “Just leave things be and learn to cope.” Regardless of THE SYSTEM those with a monkey wrench will find a way to (try to) muck it up. Ways that cannot always be perfectly foreseen and will likely create a new set of problems to “fix.”

    Joe

  28. Andy

    “From Der Sidelines
    May 20, 2017 at 23:24
    Here’s a better idea:

    Put on your big boy pants, grow the hell up, and learn to deal with reality. Yes, trolls and impersonators happen. So what? That’s life.”

    Hey look everybody, one of the top suspects for being an troll here is back From Der Sidelines, Michael Seebeck. Did you ever find a job, Seebeck? Weren’t you working as a government contractor of some type? I heard that you are the Chair of the El Paso, County, LP, which I Colorado Springs. It’s been several years since I’ve been to Colorado Springs. Maybe I’ll pop in the next time I’m in Colorado.

  29. Andy

    Micheal Seebeck comments From Der Sidelines: “Some of us (like me) prefer to maintain anonymity so we can speak our mind without fear of any retribution from the wimps who can’t handle straight talk. Those wimps are the real problem because they get offended over the littlest things and need their binkies and adult coloring books.”

    Hey, it is pussy wimps like you who talk shit while hiding behind fake names and IP anonymizers.

    Come out from hiding and talk shit to people’s faces, like a real man.

  30. Andy

    “Joe Buchman
    May 20, 2017 at 23:34
    From Der Sidelines @ May 20, 2017 at 23:24

    ‘Here’s a better idea: Put on your big boy pants, grow the hell up’

    Ditto that. That said, it’s Warren’s site and he can do whatever he wants with it. I’m grateful it exists, have no problem skipping things I’m not interested in, and will likely be able to continue to find value and be grateful with whatever new system is put in place, if any.”

    Joe, there have been death threats here, false flags (connected to death threats), false criminal accusations, stalking, and false slander meant to put people out of work. This is not just innocent trash talking or political discussion/debate.

    Let’s say that somebody sent you death threats, and let’s say they sent death threats to other people and put your name on it, and you ended up getting paid a visit buy the police and put in jail while they were trying to figure out whether or not you really sent the death threat. Let’s say that they emailed your place of employment and slandered you in an attempt to get you fired, and let’s say that email perspective places where you may want to work and did the same thing. Let’s say that they threaten your family. Let’s say they made up a bunch of lies about you, and made up false claims that you had committed crimes, and posted this stuff online, and let’s say that they started impersonating you and posting messages with things that you did not say. Let’s say that were stalking you and posting which motel room you were in, and what your room number was.

    Do you think that you’d take this stuff lightly, as if it was no big deal, or would you be pissed off, and want to do something about it?

  31. paulie

    Andy:

    If you think you know who someone is that posts anonymously, keep that to yourself. It is against our rules here to share or post that information. You should already know that but in case you didn’t, now you do. I will not confirm whether your guess about the identity of From Der Sidelines is correct.

  32. Deran

    Andy’s above lengthy comment is exactly what I mean. I think Andy should be confined to his own threads. Or better yet, his own blog.

  33. Andy

    “Deran
    May 21, 2017 at 00:24
    Andy’s above lengthy comment is exactly what I mean. I think Andy should be confined to his own threads. Or better yet, his own blog.”

    Oh gee, a man with a gun must have come up to you and forced you to read my posts. I mean, it’s not like each person can chose whether or not to click on a link, or whether or not to read an article or comment.

    I think you should stop being a crybaby.

  34. steve m

    Andy,

    What you don’t get is that you seem to be lashing out in what seems to be random directions.

    You have stuff to say that is interesting. Specifically when you talk about the issues that petitioners have to deal with on the street.

    I really don’t mind when you go off on some of the weirder conspiracy themes.

    It might be when you make accusations that we can’t substantiate from the sidelines that you get taken as less interesting and more hostile.

    but that is just an opinion based on my observations…

    in short relax

  35. Antirevolutionary/Catholic Trotskyist

    No troll problem in 2008, Paulie? When Robert Milnes and I were at the height of our rhetorical powers?
    I do hope there is no comment registration for what it’s worth. I’ve matured and settled down quite a bit, but I still prefer the wild west atmosphere.
    BTW I’m now a member of the American Solidarity Party. What can we do to get one of their members signed up to post here? There are possibly some big announcements coming soon.

  36. Andy

    “steve m
    May 21, 2017 at 01:32
    Andy,

    What you don’t get is that you seem to be lashing out in what seems to be random directions.”

    This is not lashing out in what seem to be random directions. I’m lashing out against the people who have been trolling here, who have done all of the things mentioned above in the response to Joe Buchman, and more.

    If stuff like that happened to you, perhaps you’d be lashing out as well.

  37. steve m

    Andy,

    would I be lashing out…. probably not, at least not on an on going basis…. why put energy into a fruitless endeavor? Far better to just put energy into something productive and ignore those that aren’t helping

  38. Curt Boyd

    I read much more often than I comment, and I’m not in many political circles that I would have made enemies yet, but I think logging in to comment is a great idea. If there have been problems, any effort made to fix them is worth it.

    All efforts on this website are worth it. It’s a great source of news for me. Thanks for everyone’s hard work!

  39. paulie

    This is not lashing out in what seem to be random directions.

    It is when you attack people you merely suspect of being involved, such as the person who you presume, rightly or wrongly, to be FDS.

    If stuff like that happened to you, perhaps you’d be lashing out as well.

    It has happened and is still happening to me, but I try to be measured in my response and consider my audience as best I can. I’m at least as unhappy about this crap as you are but I don’t see what is to be gained from jumping up and down and stomping my feet about it.

  40. Bondurant

    I have no qualms about signing in to comment. It can be done just as anonymously. Another user friendly option would be to bring back numbered comment entry. It was much easier to read, track and reply.

  41. paulie

    No troll problem in 2008, Paulie? When Robert Milnes and I were at the height of our rhetorical powers?

    I don’t see Milnes as a troll. He is as far as I can tell honestly deluded and saying what he actually believes. I think you maybe verged on “trolling” with some of your posts, as you may have gotten carried away with exaggerating some of your opinions for effect, but it struck me as more light hearted and humorous than the malicious sort of trolling we have been seeing lately.

    BTW I’m now a member of the American Solidarity Party. What can we do to get one of their members signed up to post here? There are possibly some big announcements coming soon.

    I could sign someone up.

  42. paulie

    I have no qualms about signing in to comment. It can be done just as anonymously.

    Which makes me doubt whether it will really stop the problem it is meant to address.

    Another user friendly option would be to bring back numbered comment entry. It was much easier to read, track and reply.

    I agree, but we haven’t figured out how to do it. It was a feature of the wordpress theme we were using and there were other problems with that theme – apparently security from what I was told, and it was old and no longer supported by wordpress.

  43. paulie

    Oh gee, a man with a gun must have come up to you and forced you to read my posts. I mean, it’s not like each person can chose whether or not to click on a link, or whether or not to read an article or comment.

    It’s a natural tendency to read what all is posted when you scroll down a wall. There are a few people whose comments I try to skip over but they don’t post as often as you do. It becomes harder to skip their crap when other people respond it to it and other people respond to their responses etc. Many people prefer to just stop reading and especially participating in IPR comments instead. In fact, quite a few of them have told us they are doing so specifically because of your comments – including several people who used to post articles much more frequently here. So, yeah, anyone can scroll past anything, but in reality it is not that simple. Like it or not, we are a community or an ecosystem of sorts and the tone we take has an impact on everyone in that community or ecosystem and whether or not and how much they decide to continue to participate in it.

  44. paulie

    Login w/ registration email verification might not prevent that in this instance. Login w/ sms verification would kill it. But it is overkill.

    Simple diligent moderation policy likely will handle the problem here. Just as diligent moderation handled the problem of alt-right nationalist spam. Delete the impersonation spam. It generally only occurs in sporadic bursts. But also delete any accusatory spam that follows. IMO, indulging in the latter is probably the motivation for the former. Simply enforce that straight forward policy. No exceptions. I think the problem then would then resolve itself pretty much.

    Good point.

    VPN not only shields your geo-location data from third-party prying eyes, it also shields your browser history from your ISP. In a post-Snowden world, it has become a recommended practice, endorsed by virtually all privacy/civil libertarian groups.

    Also a good point.

  45. paulie

    Requiring an account isn’t going to solve that, either. It’s a waste of time. Fake email accounts happen, too.

    Exactly.

  46. Thomas L. Knapp

    “I consider Andy to be one of the more amusing and entertaining characters of IPR…. So those that complain about his comments might just try skipping past them.”

    Well, that would be easy if not for the resistance to installing a modern, rational commenting system. Anyone who didn’t want to read Andy’s comments could just click “block user” next to his name.

    Unfortunately, some people go berserk at the idea of comments actually being organized for maximum readability.

  47. paulie

    Some people don’t consider constantly scrolling up and down to see whether new comments were posted, or getting emails whenever a new comment is posted anywhere on IPR, to be “maximum readability.” Some people also don’t like disqus load time etc etc etc.

    “Block user”… I’ve tried that on facebook, but not with very many people. And even as few people as I have blocked, it already makes the conversation disjointed and prone to misinterpretation, if someone is replying to something that I am not seeing and I am thinking they are replying to something that I do see, as the last comment I can actually see.

    And facebook implemented that stupid nested comment thing which I really hate, which makes it virtually impossible to continue following a conversation there.

  48. paulie

    And, I don’t want to completely block people here, I want to be able to see what they say in case it crosses the line and more drastic actions becomes needed. I try to scroll past some people’s comments all or most of the time and rely on everyone else to call my attention to it if they cross the line. I usually try to announce who those people are periodically to help facilitate that.

  49. dL

    Well, that would be easy if not for the resistance to installing a modern, rational commenting system. Anyone who didn’t want to read Andy’s comments could just click “block user” next to his name.

    You still have to have diligent moderation…yes? If you don’t enforce a moderation policy, you will have the same problems on discus that have using native wordpress. Unfortunately, “modern commenting system” also means “modern surveillance/tracking system.” Discus is more convenient for end users, but it comes w/ a potential price. They “ignore user” function they added in last year–a feature that has been a long time staple of software like vBulletin–would be helpful here, tho…

  50. wredlich Post author

    “”bring back numbered comment entry”

    Yes that was popular. I liked it too. As I recall it was a feature of the old theme. The old theme became outdated and posed a security risk. It was also less mobile friendly and slow.

    When I updated the theme the numbered comments were lost. At the time I was not able to find a plugin that would do it. So it needs a programmer. If I remember correctly (big if) someone volunteered to do it and then never delivered.

  51. wredlich Post author

    “Requiring an account isn’t going to solve that, either. It’s a waste of time. Fake email accounts happen, too.”

    Requiring an account would make a huge difference in preventing people from posting under the names of others. It would be much easier to identify who is doing it and suspending or closing that account. I believe I can make it so that an account is not automatically approved.

    Perhaps a determined troll could overcome that, but it would still be limiting and would deter the less determined trolls.

    Still no decision yet. I am leaning that way but let’s see if people play nice for the next week or so.

    Incidentally I would expect that regular users would generally remain logged in for their entire session if not longer. And logging in is a fairly easy process.

    The bigger question in my mind is protecting anonymity. I don’t think it’ll be difficult to do that but if anyone has any thoughts on that, I’m listening. Well reading.

  52. Carol Moore/Secession.net

    Just searched body of the 50 odd IPR messages haven’t read yet and 37 had ANDY in the content. Please register people nd then give him a quota or something, will ya?

    I try not to interact much with him but some people can’t control selves. If they ignore him – and vice versa – it would do a great service here. Anyone who doesn’t post in first couple minutes probably will never be read because the BLAH BLAH BLAH happens right after that.

  53. wredlich Post author

    I was actually thinking about some kind of quota or limits per hour or day. But it would be hard to implement that. So it’s not likely to happen.

  54. Chuck Moulton

    I don’t think requiring registration for comments is a good idea.

    Some people are jerks now who spam or impersonate others, but I don’t think the proposed solution will actually solve that states problem.

    I personally find registration to be quite obnoxious. When a site requires registration to read an article or comment on an article, I generally take that as an indication they are not worth my time and don’t want my business. Usually it’s so they can track you or add you to some email spam list. No thanks.

    I have had a registered account here for years. I don’t use it for commenting. I only used it when I was an IPR contributor to post articles. I didn’t like the way my name was presented in the comment header as well as the way not logged in users were presented.

    More importantly, I have no desire whatsoever to login to yet another account. I always logout immediately when I am done with an Internet resource. Staying logged in would open myself to increased tracking and let someone step into my credentials if my phone got misplaced and taken.

    But the biggest reason is every account means yet another password to remember. It would be nice if I could have one easy to remember password and use it everywhere. In today’s world, that’s not reality. One stupid insecure website gets hacked and the bad guys have your password, which they could then use everywhere. So instead you need a different password every place. Every website seems to think one more login and password is not a big deal. They are dead wrong. Unfortunately by necessity I participate in more websites with logins and passwords than I can even remember or count. Email, social media, banks, credit cards, restaurants, schools, streaming services, political sites… it goes on and on. I’m a pretty smart guy and I have a pretty good memory, but it’s just not possible to remember that many passwords when every single website I read wants its own password. I can’t do it and I won’t do it.

    I’m not saying I will completely stop participating in a locked down IPR… however, my participation will go way down when the barrier of entry to saying something becomes 5-10 minutes looking up a password or trying 50 different password I might have used.

    It would be nice if the real jerks could be found and someone could ask them to just stop being jerks.

  55. paulie

    You still have to have diligent moderation…yes? If you don’t enforce a moderation policy, you will have the same problems on discus that have using native wordpress. Unfortunately, “modern commenting system” also means “modern surveillance/tracking system.” Discus is more convenient for end users, but it comes w/ a potential price. They “ignore user” function they added in last year–a feature that has been a long time staple of software like vBulletin–would be helpful here, tho…

    Another issue with what would happen with a move to disqus, besides having to scroll up and down looking for new comments or getting gangpiled with email notifications – and besides load speed – is what would happen to the 305k plus comments we already have. I would like to keep that history and keep the ability to reply to old comments. For many reasons I would oppose going to disqus.

  56. paulie

    Just searched body of the 50 odd IPR messages haven’t read yet and 37 had ANDY in the content. Please register people nd then give him a quota or something, will ya?

    I don’t think I would put up with having a quota personally, even if such a thing can be done, and I see no such setting in wp.

  57. wredlich Post author

    I don’t really see Disqus as an option. As I mentioned earlier I tried it on a website in the past and it slowed the site down. Unless someone tells me it’s vastly improved (which is possible) I wouldn’t consider it.

    “It would be nice if I could have one easy to remember password and use it everywhere. In today’s world, that’s not reality. One stupid insecure website gets hacked and the bad guys have your password, which they could then use everywhere.”

    I use variations of a fairly easy password on sites that are less important (like this one would be to me if I was an ordinary user). Save the stronger passwords for sites that have your financial info or access to important personal info. Just my opinion.

  58. wredlich Post author

    “Staying logged in would open myself to increased tracking and let someone step into my credentials if my phone got misplaced and taken.”

    As far as I know, IPR does not track users.

    For your phone, you should have a lock screen so someone who picks it up can’t access apps.

  59. NewFederalist

    “I’ve matured and settled down quite a bit, but I still prefer the wild west atmosphere.” – Catholic Trotskyist/Antirevolutionary

    Good to see you back! I too prefer the “wild west” but I understand what Warren is trying to do. Some of the crappola has just gone over the top.

  60. dL

    Warren:

    (1) Simply delete the impersonation spam when detected. This is already being done.
    (2) Delete the accusation spam that follows. “User-XXX is impersonating me. More evidence User-XXX is a government troll.” User-XXX responds: ‘No, you are the troll…blah,blah,blah.” Back and forth it goes.

    Deleting (2) is not being done.It would fall under a category of unsubstantiated personal attacks.

    Enforce 1,2 and the problem likely resolves itself. If you give the OK, I will nix (2) when I see it.

  61. paulie

    dL, it’s a dilemma and I have gone back and forth about it myself but I am thinking if a comment is delete-worthy then it should follow that any subsequent comment that does not do anything except address the deleted/delete-worthy comment should be deleted at the same time, even if it comes from a source that is otherwise normally green-lighted. If the subsequent response is “fuck off” or “delete that” or “above is a government plant…” it should probably go along with the comment it replies to. If the response is more substantive, that becomes a harder call.

  62. dL

    dL, it’s a dilemma and I have gone back and forth about it myself but I am thinking if a comment is delete-worthy then it should follow that any subsequent comment that does not do anything except address the deleted/delete-worthy comment should be deleted at the same time, even if it comes from a source that is otherwise normally green-lighted.

    I agree..why I called it “accusation spam.” The entire back and forth. It all falls under the category of unsubstantiated personal attacks. Delete it all. Such actions are not censorship by any means.

  63. dL

    If the response is more substantive, that becomes a harder call.

    inline moderation….

    Example:

    We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.

    Btw, IPR User-XXX licks canine nuts and is a government plant…

    Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed….

    Becomes:

    We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.

    [comment removed…personal attack]

    Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed….

  64. Andy

    “Carol Moore/Secession.net
    May 21, 2017 at 16:00
    Just searched body of the 50 odd IPR messages haven’t read yet and 37 had ANDY in the content. Please register people nd then give him a quota or something, will ya?

    I try not to interact much with him but some people can’t control selves. If they ignore him – and vice versa – it would do a great service here. Anyone who doesn’t post in first couple minutes probably will never be read because the BLAH BLAH BLAH happens right after that;”

    I’ve been posting at IPR on and off since its inception, and I’ve never had the urge to call for banning, or limiting posts from anyone, EXCEPT for the trolls who hide behind fake names and IP anonymizers and spread lies, make false criminal accusations, make death threats, and give out motels and room numbers where people are staying.

  65. Andy

    “steve m
    May 21, 2017 at 02:29
    Andy,

    would I be lashing out…. probably not, at least not on an on going basis…. why put energy into a fruitless endeavor? ”

    Until the stuff described above has happened to you, I doubt you know what you’d do.

  66. Andy

    “paulie
    May 21, 2017 at 09:55
    ‘Requiring an account isn’t going to solve that, either. It’s a waste of time. Fake email accounts happen, too.’
    Exactly.”

    Yes, this is why the real solution is to ban posts from IP anonymizers. You can come here and say whatever you want, so long as it can be traced back to whoever you really are. No more of this talking shit, spreading lies, making false criminal accusations, and making death threats, while hiding out like a coward behind an IP anonymizer.

  67. Andy

    “NewFederalist
    May 21, 2017 at 19:07
    ‘I’ve matured and settled down quite a bit, but I still prefer the wild west atmosphere.’ – Catholic Trotskyist/Antirevolutionary

    Good to see you back! I too prefer the ‘wild west’ but I understand what Warren is trying to do. Some of the crappola has just gone over the top.”

    Yeah, and you have not received any death threats either, nor have you had a troll send out a death threat that they falsely signed under your name, which led to the police locking you in jail while they were trying to figure out whether or not it really came from you.

  68. Andy

    “paulie
    May 21, 2017 at 09:18
    ‘Oh gee, a man with a gun must have come up to you and forced you to read my posts. I mean, it’s not like each person can chose whether or not to click on a link, or whether or not to read an article or comment.’
    It’s a natural tendency to read what all is posted when you scroll down a wall”

    If there is a comment or an article posted here that I don’t find interesting, I scroll past it.

  69. Tony From Long Island

    Just so you know, I don’t have a facebook account and I don’t have a twitter account. So if those are a requirement to posting, I would no longer be able to post – something that would thrill Andy.

    I use Disqus when posting elsewhere.

  70. paulie

    I would no longer be able to post – something that would thrill Andy.

    I don’t think he cares if you post or not, honestly. Andy seems to me like he would be almost as happy talking to himself. The audience if any is of secondary importance if that.

  71. wredlich Post author

    The idea is to require an account on IPR. Allowing Facebook/Twitter logins would not help as there are many, many trolls on both.

    No one has even attempted to persuade me that Disqus is worth considering.

  72. paulie

    “paulie
    May 21, 2017 at 09:18
    ‘Oh gee, a man with a gun must have come up to you and forced you to read my posts. I mean, it’s not like each person can chose whether or not to click on a link, or whether or not to read an article or comment.’
    It’s a natural tendency to read what all is posted when you scroll down a wall”

    If there is a comment or an article posted here that I don’t find interesting, I scroll past it.

    Yes, that’s a meaningful response to what I said, because you are the only one who matters here, naturally. BTW…You cut off the rest of my comment; it makes much more sense if you quote the whole thing.

  73. paulie

    Yeah, and you have not received any death threats either,

    Well, I have. Several. And I can still say that your reaction is not helping.

  74. paulie

    Yes, this is why the real solution is to ban posts from IP anonymizers.

    Nope. Repeatedly addressed above. Not happening no matter how many times you repeat yourself.

    You can come here and say whatever you want, so long as it can be traced back to whoever you really are. No more of this talking shit, spreading lies, making false criminal accusations, and making death threats, while hiding out like a coward behind an IP anonymizer.

    Start your own blog and you can make that rule. We have already told you, repeatedly, why we will not be doing that here. All you have to do is scroll up and you’ll see numerous reasons mentioned.

  75. Tony From Long Island

    Paulie, I agree that Warren probably doesn’t care if I personally post or not, but the thread was to express opinions on posting options. I am just stating that if certain methods were used I would no longer be able to post.

    Other than attacking Andy – I hope that my posts would be seen as at least coming from another perspective.

    Other than a heated back and forth with Warren a few weeks back (when I admittedly was having a crappy day) I don’t think I have posted anything that made people angry or attacked anyone personally (Andy notwithstanding).

    If everyone always agreed with everyone , it would be pretty boring.

  76. paulie

    Paulie, I agree that Warren probably doesn’t care if I personally post or not,

    Sorry if my response was confusing – I meant Andy probably does not care if you post or not. If you also meant Andy directly above, never mind, carry on.

  77. paulie

    If everyone always agreed with everyone , it would be pretty boring.

    Not to be too boring, but I agree 🙂

  78. wredlich Post author

    “I agree that Warren probably doesn’t care if I personally post or not”

    I don’t have anything against anyone in particular. I don’t even remember our disagreement.

    My goal is a sustaining community. If it becomes unpleasant for users and they stop coming and commenting, then the site dies.

    I have a monetizing strategy in mind that would make far more money in the short run. If the site dies I’ll do that. But I’d rather keep it going.

  79. paulie

    I’ve been posting at IPR on and off since its inception, and I’ve never had the urge to call for banning, or limiting posts from anyone, EXCEPT for the trolls who hide behind fake names and IP anonymizers and spread lies, make false criminal accusations, make death threats, and give out motels and room numbers where people are staying.

    They don’t always post from anonymizers. Some of them post from T-Mobile and do a lot of the same shit including impersonation, lies and false accusations. Some of them post with their real, identifiable name – Ryan Ramsey being the latest example, and post lies, distortions, false criminal accusations, and make threats. There are other people who post from anonymizers and as far as I know don’t do any of these things. Why is this so hard to understand?

  80. dL

    Paulie: Are we in agreement RE: enforcing going forward:

    (1) Simply delete the impersonation spam when detected. This is already being done.
    (2) Delete the accusation spam that follows. “User-XXX is impersonating me. More evidence User-XXX is a government troll.” User-XXX responds: ‘No, you are the troll…blah,blah,blah.” Back and forth it goes.

    Other than that, everything else stays the same…its just a simple matter of a more diligent moderation policy

  81. paulie

    I’m in agreement. If Warren wants to overrule us please speak up. If anyone else wants to weigh in please do so. Otherwise that will be the procedure.

  82. Thomas L. Knapp

    Quoth Warren:

    “No one has even attempted to persuade me that Disqus is worth considering.”

    Actually, I’ve attempted that probably ten times over the years.

    Disqus is easy to implement, easy to moderate, offers users maximum flexibility in registration/login if the forum owner chooses to let them use their existing social media identities for login, allows users to block the posts of other users whose posts they don’t want to read, and organizes comments so that they are easy to read instead of a solid wall of undifferentiated, unthreaded text.

    Disqus is hands down the best commenting system on Earth, so far and away so that the others really aren’t worth disqussing.

  83. paulie

    If anyone besides Knapp has been flogging that disqus horse I don’t remember it. Kind of like Andy with the idea of banning IP anonymizers. Two natural born tireless evangelists for those respective causes, the two of them.

  84. dL

    Disqus is easy to implement, easy to moderate, offers users maximum flexibility in registration/login if the forum owner chooses to let them use their existing social media identities for login, allows users to block the posts of other users whose posts they don’t want to read, and organizes comments so that they are easy to read instead of a solid wall of undifferentiated, unthreaded text.

    But it wouldn’t really address the actual issues at the fore here….

    Disqus is hands down the best commenting system on Earth, so far and away so that the others really aren’t worth disqussing.

    Opinions vary on that…personally, I find github and stack exchange to have the best comment systems.

  85. paulie

    Disqus is a plague straight out of the old testament. If ancient Egyptians had computers they got disqus around the same time as the frogs, locusts etc.

  86. Thomas L. Knapp

    Well, look:

    I don’t really object to Independent Political Report riding a unicycle (native WordPress comments) when it could be driving a Ferrari (Disqus).

    What I object to is every month or two a shitstorm of belly-aching about the unicycle while refusing to pick the fucking keys up off the table and get in the Ferrari.

    Either start driving the Ferrari or stop wasting time complaining about the unicycle, thinking about getting a new tire or a new seat for the unicycle, whining about having to go through a tube of Ben-Gay every day because you’re worn out by the unicycle, etc.

    You’ve got a problem. There’s a solution to that problem. You won’t use the solution, but you won’t stop bringing up the problem either.

  87. wredlich Post author

    You keep missing that I have driven the so-called Ferrari in the past and its performance did not live up to the name. More like a Ford Prefect.

    That and it doesn’t really solve the problem, sells user data to whoever, etc.

    I’d feel real bad for that horse if it wasn’t dead before you started beating it.

  88. paulie

    You keep missing that I have driven the so-called Ferrari in the past and its performance did not live up to the name. More like a Ford Prefect.

    It’s a Pinto. One of the four-legged variety, that is no longer drawing breath.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pinto_horse

    Most likely expired from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lethal_white_syndrome in addition to severe beating.

    Sometimes mistaken for a Ferrari due to the horse on the logo.

    I’d feel real bad for that horse if it wasn’t dead before you started beating it.

    Indeed.

  89. Chuck Moulton

    Thomas L. Knapp wrote:

    I don’t really object to Independent Political Report riding a unicycle (native WordPress comments) when it could be driving a Ferrari (Disqus).

    I was somewhat on the fence, having used both this native WordPress commenting system and Disqus extensively. However, Tom has convinced me with his analogy… as an avid unicyclist myself, I correspondingly endorse our current commenting system over Disqus.

  90. Thomas L. Knapp

    Chuck FTW.

    I own a unicycle myself, but gave up trying to ride it very quickly on the supposition that breaking my neck might not be as fun as it sounds.

  91. paulie

    What, you didn’t think I did good, what with tying everything into a neat bow about the Ferrari, the Pinto, the deadly colon disease that afflicts Pinto horses, beating a dead horse, and the horse on the Ferrari logo? That’s horseshit, dude! My comment deserved a FTW too! I appeal the lack of a well-deserved FTW!

  92. Thomas L. Knapp

    Paulie,

    I probably have a perspective problem with respect to you on this issue.

    I’m examining prospective commenting systems that would not require IPR’s approval to implement.

  93. paulie

    Tried to load that just now. Started to notice that I had a beard start growing while I was waiting for it to load.

    🙂

  94. Thomas L. Knapp

    Hmmm … takes about a second and a half to load for me. It’s side by side frames: The article on the right, Facebook commenting on the left.

    I know that there are other systems like this — I’ve messed with some of them in the past. I’d personally prefer on that doesn’t rely on Facebook. On the other hand, Facebook commenting has the ability to block commenters you don’t want to hear from, etc. And it would let Mark Zuckerberg instead of us have the moderation headaches.

  95. paulie

    I’d prefer not to hand it over to Zuckerberg. They have a very capricious system. I know all sorts of people that have been locked out of FB, temporarily or permanently, for very absurd reasons. Including those of us who admin the IPR FB – at one point, apparently some young friend of Lesiak’s complained that an old IPR story was “promoting drug use” (I guess it had something to do with candidates or some party that was pro-legalization) and that was enough to get everyone signed up as an IPR FB admin locked out of FB for a few days. None of us had even posted the story.

    The ability for those who want to comment on our articles on FB already exists, of course. But I would prefer to also keep our own comment system. I like it better.

  96. paulie

    Tried commenter.me a few times to see if it was a fluke. It seems very slow to load here each time. IPR comments load at normal speed here. But if anyone wants to use it I can’t stop them. For all I know there is already a bunch of discussion of IPR articles on systems like that which I don’t even see or know of.

  97. dL

    NOTE: Any comment posted from Montreal, Quebec, Canada OVH SAS VPS/VPN will be immediately deleted. That is a one of the two primary sources of impersonation spam.

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