Anonymous website comments to end

abbynews.com part of Black Press website move to Facebook commenting

  • Nov. 22, 2011 7:00 a.m.

For the last few years, as abbynews.com and the Black Press family of websites have garnered more attention, some readers have raised concerns about one issue in particular — the fact we allow visitors to post anonymous comments.

The policy has led to some unpleasant and mean-spirited postings. It’s also raised an inconsistency in our Black Press brand. Our community newspapers don’t print anonymous letters, yet we’ve allowed our websites to become a place where people can hide their identity while occasionally engaging in personal attacks and allegations.

Starting Dec. 1, that policy will change.

People will only be able to comment by using their Facebook account, which means their name, often even their photograph, will be linked to the statements they post.

Abbynews.com is not alone in making this shift. Several media companies, equally troubled by the vitriolic trend of anonymous comments, are turning to Facebook to power their website commenting.

All of Black Press in B.C., Alberta and Washington State have made the switch. Our sister publications have continued to see spirited discourse among those who post comments, yet the discourse is at a much higher level, and commentators are generally well-mannered and on-topic.

This new approach won’t be perfect. People without a Facebook account won’t be able to participate in online discussions.

Still, we’re enthused to be in the vanguard of this movement. It shows we’re listening to our readers and responding. It places us more deeply into the powerful world of social media: by using Facebook Comments, we’re embracing a social medium with 800 million users worldwide.

For those of you who choose not to create a Facebook account, remember we will continue to run letters to the editor in print.

So please continue to be a part of the discussion. Your comments are part of an important dialogue that enlivens and enriches civic life in the community.

We attempted to answer most common questions here: http://www.abbynews.com/commentfaq/

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Compost separation coming to all Abbotsford apartments and businesses

Rules require separate waste and compost collection, but city must still buy containers for parks

Former Abbotsford man pleads guilty to 2018 assault in Ontario of man with autism

Parmvir Chahil, along with Jaspaul Uppal, to be sentenced in June for aggravated assault

Abbotsford Hawks Bantam C1 win in Phoenix

Hawks win Bantam division at 19th annual Presidents’ Day Invitational

Fraser Valley couple wins $500K after finding scratch-and-win while moving

  • Robert Walters and Lois Gueret of Agassiz win half a million from Scratch & Win ticket

High-risk sex offender living in Chilliwack back in court

Former mayor and residents wanted James Conway gone from residential neighbourhood two years ago

Protecting privacy key to stopping spread of COVID-19, B.C. health officials say

The number of coronavirus cases in B.C. remains at seven

Toffoli scores OT winner as Canucks beat Habs 4-3

Demko makes 37 saves for Vancouver

Private clinics would harm ‘ordinary’ people using public system in B.C.: lawyer

Health Minister Adrian Dix announced in 2018 that the government would begin to fine doctors $10,000

B.C. terminates contract with hospice society refusing assisted death

Delta Hospice Society loses hospital service fund of $1.5 million

Child in hospital following fatal crash that killed father, sibling on B.C. highway

The single vehicle crash occured near Kamloops on Highway 5A

‘Die!’: Vernon councillor mailed death threat

This story contains information that might be sensitive to some readers

B.C. landlord can’t serve eviction notice because tenant is in jail

Homeowner baffled at arbitrator decision based on notice of hearing not being served properly

Hidden message connects Castlegar homeowners decades apart

The Rodgers family was surprised when a message fell out of the walls as they were renovating

Most Read