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Comments Policy

Ownership and rights

Harry’s Place is a privately run blog and the editors reserve the right to remove any comment. They also reserve the right not to enter into correspondence over these decisions.

Comments submitted are owned by the person who made them and are not the views of the site’s editors, contributors, guest posters or other commenters.

An important note

Harry’s Place is an amateur blog. Editors and writers are not paid. Contributions are made in people’s spare time. There are no full-time staff members who monitor discussions or any co-ordinated roster of volunteers. It is entirely haphazard. It is the hobby of a small group of people. It is nevertheless our pleasure to be able to facilitate discussions of important issues concerning a range of subjects of interest to us and others. But we cannot be everywhere and see everything, but more importantly, we don’t want to run that sort of blog. We do not, cannot and will not micromanage every interaction and exchange on Harry’s Place.

Freedom of speech

Harry’s Place believes in freedom of speech and open debate. With that in mind, while reserving our rights as above, we run a largely unmoderated discussion board. It is our conviction that adults in a free society can discuss ideas openly without, generally speaking, the need for policing.

We do not delete comments simply because we do not agree with them. We want a vibrant marketplace of ideas, not an echo chamber. It should be kept in mind however that marketplaces can at times be loud and chaotic.

It is our conviction that the best way to deal with contrary views – even objectionable ones – is to challenge them, to argue, to criticise them or, in some cases, to treat them with contempt by ignoring them. This is how a free society functions.

Furthermore, we believe that minds can be changed. People may hold eccentric or obnoxious views today, but they may come around to another view through discussion and engagement with those who think differently. Silencing people and banning them closes the door forever on the chance to persuade them of their errors or to challenge their ideas. We will not, in general, ban any participant permanently.

Even when a mind cannot be changed, it is better that a bad idea is exposed to the light of day. We cannot prepare ourselves for ideological battles against ideas that lurk in shadow and are transmitted in whispers.

What we expect of those leaving comments

We understand that political, religious and ideological discussions can get somewhat heated. We therefore are fairly indulgent. We do however ask our commenters to attempt to maintain a level of respect and civility. Not only does it cost nothing, civility makes for a more rewarding discussion.

Some reasons why a comment may be deleted

  1. Trolling – repeated insincere and inflammatory posts which appear to have no purpose other than to disrupt a discussion.
  2. Off-topic – the comments section is for discussion of the issues raised in the post.
  3. Abusive, violent or threatening language
  4. Libel – the deliberate telling of falsehoods about another person
  5. Identity spoofing – posing as another commenter or a public figure
  6. Spam
  7. You’ve really pissed off an editor who is having a bad day.

Please also keep in mind that a comment listing multiple external links may get caught by the spam filter.

Disclaimer

The fact that a comment appears, or has not been deleted, in no way implies an endorsement by Harry’s Place of that comment or its author’s views.

All comments are removed after seven days.