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Blog (Letter to the Editor)

Asking Patch to stop allowing anonymous posters.

I'm not a fan of the word blog. Until recently I was not even sure what it means,  to me it's one of those "new" words. I prefer letter to the  editor. In my previous letters (blogs, postings) I talked about  lighter issues. When I read some of the  words written on Patch and other places I wonder.

I would not write under an assumed name what a terrible person I think the new (recycled) Speaker of the NH House is – she fired someone  who worked for both party leaders and from what I read was liked by all, and  she did this with Christmas less than three weeks away. I ask the Patch to adopt policies used by others that only proper legal names be used. The Nashua Telegraph has one log in through their Facebook account.   

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Jan Schmidt December 08, 2012 at 08:51 PM
Using Facebook, the Telegraph has seen their comment section shrink by a huge number. This means when they try to market their online space to advertisers they look much less interesting, and likely lose $$$ Patch is a business, here to make money not free space for us to comment. And Carol isn't the one making business decisions, that would be the corporate office. And yes, hiding behind a fake name is despicable if you do it to strike at others like a coward, but.... Having used my own name has left me open to some pretty ugly bullying so I also understand why posters who are fair and honest might not want to expose themselves. Tough decision...
Judith Hogan December 08, 2012 at 10:15 PM
I, too, have always used my own name. A name I am quite proud of - actually. I, too, have suffered ugly comments from most frequent users and that is the price one pays for commenting on these types of sites. If Patch is not meant as free space for "us" to comment - who would read their ads? Perhaps Patch should run a test. Eliminate the comment section for a period of time and measure the # of hits during the "no comment" period vs. the # of hits when comments are welcomed. I am not accusing Carol of anything - when I discussed this topic with her several months ago she stated that she would talk to her superiors. Perhaps she did and they rejected the idea. I have no way of knowing. I am an advocate of open government and in this instance transparency is knowing who is commenting. Just one woman's opinion................
Carol Robidoux December 09, 2012 at 03:21 AM
Jan, you are right that it's not up to me what name someone uses as their User name when leaving feedback. I would love everyone to use their actual names, and for the most part, I feel like we're building a community here that applies peer pressure to those who are not yet feeling bold enough to own their thoughts and ideas. And Judith, all Patch editors wrestle with this one, as do newspaper editors, when dealing with online editions. In the old days, LTE sections required name, rank and serial number, and the process was much more formal. All that has changed. The challenge of the past decade or so is how to build an online community, which is an extension of social media, therefore, also an extension of news media. Things are just different, and we must keep working to perfect the process. It is not something that Patch shrugs off, Jan. There is more at stake than just advertising $$$. By the same token, without being able to show an advertiser that eyeballs will make it to their ads, there is no way to provide this kind of *free* news platform. And so it is a give and take, a matter of the community finding a comfort zone within an online news and commenting site. Changes are coming to Patch in the new year, some of which will enhance your ability to filter what you see when you log in to Patch. Stay tuned, and stay with me. Keep the comments and critiques coming, and don't think for a minute it doesn't matter, or has no impact, because it does.
Seamus Carty December 10, 2012 at 01:05 PM
Patch is owned by AOL, a multi-billion dollar public corporations. Some of their other brands are HuffingtonPost, Techcrunch and MapQuest, It is an advertising company... Along with real names, spiffy photos should be required... ;)
Brooke McNiff January 17, 2013 at 06:48 AM
Every comment I make online is under an assumed name. But, I have a deep-seated, unfounded paranoia about Big Brother and being hassled by The Man.

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