An Editorial Comment on Comments

I am seeing more frequent use of the he said/she said style of quotes in comments, e.g.,

A says: quote…

B says: response

I much prefer the style



The latter puts the emphasis on the ideas, the former puts a lot of weight on the authorship. As the rules make clear, my belief is that Portland Transport will produce a better conversation if we minimize the impact of personalities and try to elevate ideas.

5 responses to “An Editorial Comment on Comments”

  1. Attribution or even worring about attribution in a forum where anonymous posting is allowed is somewhat meaningless.

  2. If that were true, no one would bother to identify the author of the quote they were disputing.

    Most people here seem to at least use consistent pseudonyms.

    Culture is often a better tool than regulation.

  3. Most people here seem to at least use consistent pseudonyms.

    Or do they?

    Seriously though, I think your suggestion is a very good one.

  4. I’d have to disagree. But then I also don’t like anonymous posting. We don’t just discuss issues on a abstract level, we’re in relationships. One idea doesn;t stand by itself, its part of a whole…whether that’s an ideology or a worldview. I know, for instance, one particular poster hates mass transit…so when I see him posting on something else, I have a framework for understanding that response.

    But that’s just me…I’m a guest here, and if the host wants me to take my shoes off at the door, that’s his call.

  5. Frank, I’m not arguing for anonymity, it’s pretty easy to scroll up and see where the quotes come from. I’m just saying that the ‘I throw your words back in your face’ character of this style is a turn off and shifts the focus from the idea to who offered it.

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