Slate Fare

A Note to Our Commenters

Here’s your chance to ask us about the state of commenting on Slate.

To our loyal commenters:

We’ve published an updated version of our commenting policy. You can meet us in the comment thread with your questions and feedback, but before we begin that discussion, here’s some background about the changes:

  • The basic rules of the road haven’t changed. The ground rules for commenting on our articles derive from Slate’s privacy policy and terms of service, and neither of those documents has changed.
  • We plan to increase the amount of moderation that’s happening on the site. We want to improve the quality of the conversation in our comments sections, and we think that requires more active moderators.
  • The updated commenting policy is intended to give our commenters a clearer understanding of how and why we moderate comments.

We’ve also assembled a team to explore other ways we could improve the quality of conversation in our threads. One of the leaders of that team is Vanessa Vitiello Urquhart, who was a regular Slate commenter before she became a regular Slate contributor. With Vanessa’s help, we’ve already noticed an improvement in our threads, and she’s helped us start a conversation with our commenters about the changes we’re considering.

Join us in the comments on this page to give us your feedback about the new commenting policy, to ask about our other plans for improving the threads, and to share your ideas. One idea we’re exploring is community moderation—granting moderation powers to trusted commenters. We’d especially like your feedback about that idea.

Finally, when we say we want to improve the quality of discussion in our threads, we mean that we want to build upon a strength. We’re lucky to have some of the smartest commenters on the Web. Thank you for making our work better every day.

—the Slate team