Monday, September 22, 2008

The Time Has Come

I think the time has come.

Not to shut the hell up, sorry folks, but to clamp down on anonymous commenters. If we can't have the creator of the comic we're discussing show up and offer to take questions, and not have it devolve into a dozens-style rant war, well, that's not something to be proud of.

Starting today, commenters will need to authenticate themselves before commenting. Before anyone spouts off the obvious "but anyone can sign up with any name!" Yes, it's true, but forcing commenters to log in will increase the number of people that use the same handle consistently (meaning we can see who is making what comments over time), and reduce the number of drive-by flamings, both for and against PVP and PVPMMS.

This won't affect the people who already log in, and I apologize to the sometimes thoughtful Anonymouses who comment, but there it is. Some will say "but the problem is actually some of the people who aren't anonymous!" To which I say, requiring authentication will slow down the pace of commenting, and lessen the heat, and maybe all of us will be able to take a step back and breathe before jumping into an already disgruntled thread.

43 comments:

Brett Schiller (Sage) said...

Agreed, so says FSM (who still might be Kurtz :) ).

The anonymus commenters, (even though jai, me, RW, originaljes, etc. have had our share of flailing)have been the ones to either take it too far to the hate or fanboi levels.

Reader said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Reader said...

Sorry, that was me removing my previous comment. Wanted to see what would happen. :)

Anyway, it didn't say much. Just that I was posting pseudo-anonymously as "reader" prior to this change and that I was curious to see how this will impact the flow of comments. Not so much in volume, but in content.

SuperSoup said...

Occasional commenter reporting for duty. Is my name tag on straight?

Anonymous said...

Anonymous here, posting anonymously.

Jess said...

I prefer to comment anonymously. This will likely be my last comment on your blog. :|

Brett Schiller (Sage) said...

@Anonymus registering that name made me chuckle.

I feel like picture day at school when you have to look you best and pretend you aren't the savage you normally are :).

john said...

I find it greatly amusing that Scott Kurtz can roll up in here, be a complete dickface to everyone, and your response is... to ban anonymous posting.

INSERT ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT GOLF CLAP HERE.

The Trouble said...

Probably a good idea FSM, but you know the only constant in all this interwebs drama that swirls around Kurtz his him.

Anonymous said...

You know this is what Kurtz wants. All these silly ploys he keeps doing regarding this site is just an attempt to shut it down. =\

You're letting teh kurtz win.

R.W.McGee said...

I think this can only be a good thing.

Rdy said...

Yes, it was clear Scott had only come here to antagonise the posters. I'm sure he'll be laughing his ass off at the change he brought about with his trolling.

I do wonder how many of the (named) regulars, used to toggle anonymity from time to time just to spout off with trash, all the while tutting at the comments of those terrible anonymous posters.

Still, at least it'll stop some posters from whittling on with an air of faux superiority about how much more civilised they are than anons.

Julia said...

As someone who has been asking for this to happen for a while, thank you FSM!

Julia said...

Oooh! Also, this means no more captcha! Yay!

Brett Schiller (Sage) said...

no always posted undre my name

Julia said...

There may have been one or two times that I was too lazy to sign in, but I still used the name "julia" as my anonymous misnomer.

Rdy said...

If anyone did post anonymously just to spew bile and keep their regular name 'clean', I doubt they'd actually go admitting it now.

Thanks for the assurances but I'm sure you'll agree they're rather worthless.

Julia said...

rdy, I think you are wrong. The regulars have certainly said enough as themselves that I can't imagine what more there could be that anyone would be scared to say as themselves. Unless someone is secretly one of the "SCOTT KURTZ IS FAT!" comment leavers.

Steve B said...

I didn't read any of the back-n-forth between Kurtz & the rest until just now, and I have to say, anyone who thinks Kurtz was being an ass in his comments needs to look at changing their meds.

I don't really see anything he said that was so terrible; when the conversation devolved into accusations of "why don't you implement our suggestions," I felt his response of "Everyone will have conflicting suggestions; I can't implement them all," was perfectly reasonable.

PVP is not an open-source project. He's free to read what goes on here - and I think some of what is said can be useful - but it's not like most of it will affect his bottom line one way or another.

I had harsh words for Kurtz back when he wrote his ill-informed screed against critics. I don't think he really understood what the point of criticism is. At the same time, based on the reactions in the previous thread, I could say the same about a lot of the posters here. Criticism is not about a conversation between the creator and the consumers - it's between the consumers themselves. We talk about a creation because it is interesting to us, for whatever reason.

In my case, I am struck by what I see as the paradox of Kurtz's work - he has far more artistic talent, and there was a time when he was able to prolifically produce observant, relevant, funny gag strips. Yet I feel that the strip has lost a lot of that youthful energy, and I wonder a lot about what I think are poor decisions easily avoided.

I'm sure this is a common feeling among people who talk about art - you see huge talent accompanied by what seem like obvious goofs and wonder how they could exist (something I rant about all the time when talking about ways that potentially great movies are screwed up by boneheaded scripts).

I wish that the conversation yesterday had concentrated more on "why" questions about specific issues - why do "X" instead of "Y" (e.g., why did he do that "lamp falls on Cole" strip a month or so ago - that seemed extremely out of character for the strip).

evan said...

I wasn't here for the last thread. By the time I checked this site it had been locked. But seriously... I know the guy doesn't have the greatest rep when in this sort of environment, but this time he came in and said "Hi. I'm here. I'll field questions or comments." perfectly nicely and respectfully, and you guys started flaming.
Then, you continued flaming and he continued to try to field the few actual questions he got. He was in the right this time, guys, and you were in the wrong. I agree that the current story is boring, and he isn't keeping himself a buffer, but there's a way to be respectful and a way to be you guys. Kurtz was nothing but respectful this time. I thought this blog was better than that.

TheOriginalJes said...

I'm in favor of this change. I'm so tired of having to figure out which anonymous is which. (No offense, to anonymous, :D ).

(I'm trying very, Very, hard to refrain from referencing Black Friday.)

I'll see you guys after the new strip posts.

Rdy said...

Was anyone actually demanding he make changes that they dictated? I think I missed that bit.

Julia said...

I missed it as well, rdy.

As for Scott being respectful, I respectfully disagree. I gave him my opinion in response to his statement about nitpicking. He took that and used my name in his long rant about how the people on this site do nothing but talk about what a horrible person Scott is and go on and on about why he doesn't take our advice. I never said any of that, and couldn't understand why my name had been brought into it.

I tried to explain that no one thinks that, the regulars do not comment on what a horrible person Scott is except when he's trying to destroy this site, and that we would all really be most happy to just continue this as a discussion amongst the audience, without the creator's input. I was trying to be complimentary to him, comparing it to a Star Trek fan site or any TV show fan site. You know, a FAN site.

But he didn't take too kindly to that and instead mocked me and the rest of us for claiming we don't actually want him around. And then he went on about how our comments on his work are comments on him. I don't understand his leap there, and told him he really shouldn't read this if that's what he thinks.

Not sure how I was out of line in any of it. Would it have been more amusing to let him flail all by himself? Yes. But I was trying to help the poor guy out.

Anonymous said...

I'll be the first to foray into the new strip:

1) Where did "Zeus" get his new statue body? If he switched again, why didn't he do that before the golf trophy?

2) If he is the highest of magics as he proclaims, he shouldn't really have a boss.

3) "Need I remind you how you became a living statue in the first place?" He isn't a living statue, though. He's a bodiless entity that possesses a statue (so far, of either stone or metal). Now, if she turned him into this bodiless entity, fine. But she couldn't have really turned him into a statue.

The Trouble said...

I've said it before, people in general have a hard time separating criticism of their work from criticism of them personally. It's understandable, it's not always easy. Hell, it's hardly ever easy.

Scott seems to think we're all rooting for him to fail. I'm sorry he feels that way. I personally wouldn't be here if I truly thought that's what all this was about.

Brett Schiller (Sage) said...

@rdy - its as pointless as laying a blanket statement that those of us who have names are secret anonymus flame ninjas is pointless, it can't be proven either way.

Btw rdy was usually the anonymus poster who called Scott a fatass (i have no way of proving, but like rdy I feel comfortable making that claim with no evidence.

@steve b
I believe both sides contributed to the contention going on in the conversation (i was at a wedding and not involved and read it later like you) As both sides ratched up the snarkiness as it went up. Anonymus posters were as fault more than Scott, but with his history of "love" for the side and his swipes over here with Paul bringing his brand of classic wit. it wasnt going to end pretty either way. After all we are pedantic.

Brett Schiller (Sage) said...

Btw todays strip-
Very good art work as all the details were there from Scratch picking out the rubble in his fur, to the detail of the mythical creatures, to even the background that showed the boards in the wall. Only funny part was Scratch's ooooh face looks like he's about the plant one of "medussa", even though i know thats probably the only way to draw the face.

Good way to MOVE the storyline along, nothing overly funny, hopefully its either back the Skull or a quick dive into "Zeus" and "Medussa's" background and out to Skull's Return.

Other funny point (to me which could mean not funny at all) wanton's secondary definition also means "sexually exciting". Even though thats not what is implied here it could have definetly changed how this storyline ended :).

Qilapid said...

Deus ex Suckina

I mean, really? Shecky's wife could have sent him back all along? OH NOES!! We would have missed the last week's awesomeness!

Julia said...

You know, I wouldn't really mind a deus ex machina most of the time. I understand that with the medium you sometimes find you've written yourself into a corner. Any serial type thing is bound to have it happen sometimes. (The only time it's really unforgivable in my opinion is book, movie, play, that sort of thing.)

But in this case, we had to suffer through the worst storyline I can recall in PvP (and this is following several other storylines that I haven't particularly liked in the passed year or so) and all that it ended up with is this??

Rdy said...

@brett. I'm sorry you felt my comments were all about you. Believe me, not everything is.

R.W.McGee said...

liked today's strip, and I thought it was visually a lot more accesible with some background. It is only unfortunate that it is part of an arc that has not been one of my favorites.

Rdy said...

It does seem like a bit of a massive oversight for Shecky not to mention that his 'lady friend' could have sorted this entire mess out, especially considering the great deal of trouble he claimed he'd be in for showing/giving Scratch the key.

Brett Schiller (Sage) said...

@rdy - since I used a plural article ("us") instead of a single article ("I or me") in the response to your blanket statement it really wasn't about me.

And I think your past of calling Scott a fatass lowers the effectiveness of your statements.

Rdy said...

It's kind of amusing that you've decided to troll me, trying to attribute comments to me that I never made. Yeah, you're definitely proving how not being anonymous stops people from being dicks.

Brett Schiller (Sage) said...

Meh im making statements without foundation. Ill stop but it showed just how easy it is to do so as in how do you know the named people here use the anonymity feature to spread their venom. Just offer no proof and spout it, its really effective!

Rdy said...

I wondered if it was occurring in general. I didn't "claim" to know anything, one way or the other. You directly accused me of something. There is a difference.

Brett Schiller (Sage) said...

rdy typed: "I doubt they'd actually go admitting it now.

Thanks for the assurances but I'm sure you'll agree they're rather worthless."

Meaning that you believed it happens, despite our saying that we don't. Also, without having any proof and just making a claim (or "wondering") that such things went on. You wondered a question, the usual named suspects gave you an answer and you just pushed it away as meaningless.

Anyone with half a brain would realize that I have no way of knowing that you were a "fatass anonymus" and my point was to prove how anyone can make a claim and no one has recourse to prove otherwise.

Ah and this is why internet discourse is nigh impossible

(insert rdy snarky comment after this statement)

Rdy said...

Wow, you really are the king of the persecuted, aren't you? When I said the assurances were worthless, I meant that if anyone was the type of person to do such a thing, they're just as likely to claim innocence as someone who hadn't - hence meaningless. It wasn't a disparaging remark regarding your character or and attempt to insinuate that you would do that but merely a commentary of the rather empty gesture of claiming innocence.

I'm sorry you took it as directed at you specifically, got completely the wrong end of the stick and decided to make such a big deal out of it. I'll consider this a lesson learnt.

fandangamo said...

So, is this for real you guys or is this a clever satire of Friday's entertaining fiasco?

Either way I'm riveted...

A Nonny Mouse said...

Maybe it's a good idea to disable anonymous comments, but I find this particular catalyst odd. The recent incident with Kurtz had very little to do with anonymous commenters. The most inflammatory comments were from signed-in people. In fact, the closest thing Kurtz got to any support at all was from anonymous posts.

Antoine said...

Fair enough.

I have occasionally posted here as Name/URL (without a URL), but for the sake of keeping in on the discussion I signed up for a Blogger account.

R.W.McGee said...

You broke the code, A Nonny Mouse.

hanna said...


Funny Most Popular grpahic & picture codes to post in your comments or profile.v

Blog Archive