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The Digital Desk


A small change to our comments on NewsOK

by Alan Herzberger Modified: April 18, 2013 at 1:31 pm •  Published: May 21, 2010

Comments on NewsOK are something I often hear about.

  • I hear about how people love to read our comments.
  • I hear about how people wish the comments on NewsOK were more – how can I say this? – intelligent? constructive? on topic?
  • I hear about how we are sometimes inconsistent with allowing comments on some stories and not others.
  • I hear about how our comments can be embarrassing when users share the article with friends in other areas of the country.

I’ve thought a lot about comments in the past year, but we haven’t changed our philosophy. We haven’t made any major changes to our comments.

But the internal discussion about comments has become more intense. And so today, we have a small change to the way we display comments on NewsOK.

Today, comments are not visible to users just by scrolling to the bottom of the article on NewsOK. A user must now choose to click a button at the bottom of the story to view the comments. Below is what it looks like on a story right now:

We think this helps users who are sometimes dismayed by the dialogue that happens at the bottom of our articles. But it also allows us to keep a live conversation open to users who either want to participate or want to read.

We are continuing to think about comments on NewsOK, and we might have more changes in the future. In the meantime, we are committed to offering an open dialogue among readers of NewsOK.

We will continue to follow our guidelines as we decide which articles to enable the commenting functionality. And we will continue to evaluate each article and each comment as we become aware of the tone of the conversation.

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by Alan Herzberger
Digital Managing Editor
Alan Herzberger is the Digital Managing Editor for and The Oklahoman. He focuses on content within OPUBCO Communications Group’s variety of digital products. He’s been with The Oklahoman since 1997, when he joined the sports...
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