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Idea: Comment Aging.

Idea: Comment Aging.

Idea: Comment Aging.

We get quite a few comments on these blogs each week and I can't actually remember a single comment that we haven't approved for display. (with the exception of duplicates!) Now, I can imagine having to do some selection where the comments would be considered defamation, but luckily we've never really had to deal with that. (There was a really interesting series of blogs by the BBC about how they deal with this sort of thing. Read them here: BBC Moderation, The Law and "Censorship") The rest, we all let though (edited for naughty language!) This means though that we've approved some comments which are less than complementary about our products or service. Getting these comments is great because it means we can identify a problem, or service issue and take action but they stick around on your posts, possibly casting a negative light on what is often a single user issue or something not typical of our service in general for a long time. Now, before I get into my idea, I just want to make something clear. We aren't about to change our moderation policy here, or try and 'change the past'. If you've got a gripe about our services, get a comment on a post and we'll do what we can to improve or fix, or even better, head over to the forums and see if our community can help you out. This is just an idea...! I was just considering the concept of comment aging. When you are talking with other people about recommendations or things to avoid, those conversations fade away into memory. They are specific to the individuals involved and unless they come up in further conversation, don't tend to spread unless really significant. Similar with email or instant message conversations, they may be archived, but aren't immediately available to everyone else. Would it work for comments to age? Fade them to indicate age? Archive them away over a certain amount of time? Apply it to all comments to make it fair? If you did this, then only the most recent, and in principle, the most relevant comments would appear alongside blog posts. Consistent good or poor performance would mean that comments would still be there, but be current/relevant to the discussion. Has anyone seen any examples of this being done? Do people think it's a horrible idea? I'm not sure myself!

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10 Comments
All Star
Will this comment stay? Plusnet advertise that they have a ADSL2+ trial in place. Yet I get a ADSL2 service (note the lack of the +) Performance is inferior to ADSL MAX. So please, to come back on topic, do NOT edit/remove/archive or otherwise hide uncomplimentary contributions. Remember the bad publicity when BT deleted old comments (and prevented new ones) relating to their data pimping product, Webwise?
Community Gaffer
Did you actually read the blog post? Smiley Now, before I get into my idea, I just want to make something clear. We aren’t about to change our moderation policy here, or try and ‘change the past’. If you’ve got a gripe about our services, get a comment on a post and we’ll do what we can to improve or fix, or even better, head over to the forums and see if our community can help you out. This is just an idea…! To your gripe, I'll double check that your forum posts about that problem are being looked at.
Not applicable
To your gripe, I'll double check that your forums posts about that problem are being looked at. well you couldnt do that if they where wiped after a certain time frame. so it could only be a Archive system. but to be honest like the things the way they are. this message is due for Archive in 2012 hehe
Community Gaffer
The idea wouldn't be ever to wipe them. I had the vision in my head of them being displayed in a way which demonstrated that it was an old comment. Archiving would mean they'd be moved onto a linked archive page or something. Remember, you'd apply this to all comments, so it would effect complimentary ones too. Anyway, we aren't planning on doing anything like this, I was just musing Cheesy
All Star
Kelly - thanks for the action taken om my gripe - so it's an ex-gripe! But, I would like to say that when a comment is archived, the only way to be aware of it is to search for it. However, if you haven't a rough idea of what it says, you don't know what search terms to use. It's an effective way of losing data in the general background noise...
Not applicable
Interesting idea. But I think this is attempting to solve the wrong problem. The problem isn't with comments but with blog posts themselves. As long as comments on blog posts are on topic - commenting about the content of the post - then it doesn't really matter how old they are. Unless the content of the post is obsolete, the content of the comments should still be valid. If the content of the post is obsolete then it's worth updating it to say so in order to avoid confusion. The problem here, as I see it, is that customers are using the blog comments as a support channel. A part of the solution might be to make it easier for customers to submit a support request via the correct channel. People do like a good rant though and sometimes saying something publicly just seems more satisfying than sending a private support request. In these cases how about adding an icon or a bit of text to the comment when the issue has been resolved? This shows anyone reading the comment at a later date that the issue was dealt with promptly.
Plusnet Staff
@Tamlyn 'how about adding an icon or a bit of text to the comment when the issue has been resolved?' You've got the problem there of defining when an issue is 'resolved' - only the customer can decide that. That means your relying on the customer to close off the issue (like our 'ticket' system). Such a mechanism would effectively advertise this as an official support channel. It isn't - it isn't managable as such. Blog comments are only that.. comments on a blog post. We advise customers with a problem with their service to raise a support request ticket or, if not sure, discuss it first in the Community Forums.
Not applicable
Who's getting at me then
Interested
"Do people think it’s a horrible idea?" Yes, the words slope, slippery, wedge and thin spring to mind!
Grafter
All comments are date and time stamped. I imagine most people are sensible enough to look at that and decide for themselves if the comment may be relevant to the current situation. Give us some credit!