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A global hello from The Planet!

In case you haven’t heard yet, Huffington Post has announced that it will end anonymous accounts in order to reduce trolling.

While the intent of limiting trolls is admirable, losing your anonymity when you post comments at a public site could impact one’s job, business/personal relationships and even safety.

Respecting the anonymity and freedom of expression of our members are top priorities at PlanetPOV. Commenting on critical issues that make a big impact on our lives is meaningful and should be something people can freely do without worrying about any blowback in their personal lives. At PlanetPOV, your anonymity will always be respected.

Most members at PlanetPOV are current or previous bloggers at Huffington Post so if you haven’t been to The Planet recently, you may find some familiar (while anonymous!) user names.

At PlanetPOV, there is no automatic comment moderation, your comments post immediately. You can also edit your comment after it has been posted.  Our format allows for in-depth, substantial and enlightening conversations. As a site that’s all about real people and real opinions, all of our members may post their own articles which can appear on the front page and will be promoted to our membership and our Twitter and Facebook followers.

In addition to posts on political and social issues, we offer a variety of regular features:

MORNING BLOG – Our daily international roundup of the news.

TIME OUT FOR OFF TOPIC – Our virtual hangout to discuss anything and everything at any time.

VOX POPULI – Our live member chat on the week’s events every Friday night.

WEEKEND MUSIC THREAD – A new music theme every week for members to post their favorite songs.

THE SUNDAY FUNNIES ON THE PLANET – A roundup of the week’s political cartoons from both sides of the fence.

Since The Planet is not as vast as Huffington Post, we can and do moderate troll-type posts on a case-by-case basis instead of using blanket moderation on all comments. Our central philosophy is that all of our members deserve a minimum of respect when they express themselves, especially when they have a less popular opinion. So while we have 100% respect for freedom of expression, we have a zero tolerance policy for trolls or any comments expressing racism, hatred or personal attacks against fellow members.

PlanetPOV is a site by bloggers, for bloggers. We’re always trying to improve our members’ blogging experience so we always welcome feedback and suggestions.

If you haven’t been to The Planet recently or regularly, we invite you to join many fellow Huffington Post bloggers for thoughtful, anonymous and entertaining conversations at PlanetPOV.

Hope to see you soon!

All the best,

PlanetPOV Admin
http://planetpov.com

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agrippa
Member
agrippa

Eliminating anonymity is not necessary. What is needed are strong rules that are enforced consistently. And, have a ‘ladder of punishment’ which culminates with banning the IP address.

But, Huffington Post wanted the traffic and allowed all sorts of drivel. It is, now, living with the consequences of that decision.
GIGO.

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KillgoreTrout
Member

I would like to welcome all the HPers that find their way over to the Planet. I think you’ll find the Planet to be a refreshing difference from any other blog spot on the net, and certainly much better than HuffPo. I am still a member at HP, but I rarely comment any longer.

I am looking forward to some great discussions with all of you. I don’t know you yet, but am looking forward to getting acquainted as the days and weeks fly by.

I was lucky enough to be directed here by an ex HPer a little over 2 years ago. It was the most fortuitous event in my blogging life. I have grown considerably by being a member here. I have learned the difference between battling trolls and truly learning. I have learned a great deal here because of the friendly atmosphere and enlightened discussions and having the freedom to speak my mind.

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CaptD
Member
CaptD

I see this move by HP as yet another step toward limiting really high quality comments from concerned informed bloggers since this will prevent them from taking the time (and the risk) of posting in-depth comments, especially about sensitive topics!

As an example, blogging about Fukushima on HP will get dumbed down which will make all those in Gov’t. and MSM happier since bloggers will not be pointing out their stories errors and omissions.

Will Planet POV be a success, only time will tell but one thing missing from HP was the ability to “connect” with another blogger without leaving your email for the rest of the Planet, hopefully PlanetPOV will make that easy and secure.

Good Luck to US, we need it!

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MurphTheSurf3
Editor

Hello All….Most of you I spend significant time at HP- for lots of reasons. I am also a regular here0 for lots of reasons.

But the events of this last weekend really bothered me. Here is the post I wrote in response to the article that echoed words from Arianna Huffington earlier in the week:

========================================================

“Sign” all Comments using our Real Names….What the Hell!

This is a very poorly thought out decision. There will be a lot of fallout and the loss of many of HP’s most active members….including me.

I am among the most vociferous in my concern for the behavior of trolls, but they are few in number and there are other options.

This is absurd.

I have no objection to the HP staff knowing who I am and how to contact me but I will not provide my real name for the open forum here for a variety of reasons-

– safety. I am a progressive who lives in a very conservative state and many views I express here would be a cause for significant grief from neighbors and working associates. I also am a conservative on several key issues which will cause me equal grief from the liberal side of the continuum.

– privacy. A name linked to my other comments will make it easy for those who disagree with at HP to find me and to contact me.
– freedom. Engaging in an honest dialogue in an open space is daunting enough. Having to lay ones name on the line for others to see, and possible exploit, makes this activity one that I would not choose.

– effectiveness. I am an activist and HP is a place where I can have very strong, honest, direct discussion about difficult issues without having to experience blow back in the work I do in my community.

– avoiding commercial exploitation. Once our real names are associated with our accounts how big a step is to having those names “sold” to advertisers.

I am sure there are other downsides. And given a bit of time I will identify them.

THERE ARE OTHER WAYS TO HANDLE TROLLS. KILLING YOUR WEBSITE IS NOT ONE OF THEM.

I am a pundit and have now heard from a half dozen or so who will not continue to write for this website if this policy is put into place.
P.S. For a site that talks about “building a community” an arbitrary decision like this one shoots holes right through that.

=================================================

IN THE AFTERMATH OF COMMENTS LIKE THIS ONE, THOUSANDS OF THEM, HP’S VP FOR TECHNOLOGY ISSUED A STATEMENT ON THE THREAD TO CLARIFY THE POSITION AND THEN PUBLISHED AN UPDATED ARTICLE.

KEY QUOTES:

“As of next month, users won’t be able to create anonymous accounts to post on the site; going forward, their identities will have to be verified internally.”

“HuffPost recognizes that many people are not in a professional or personal situation where attaching their name to a comment is feasible, and this change will not require users to identify themselves in connection with each comment. Rather, we will ask users to verify their identity when creating an account, which will reduce the number of drive-by or automated trolls you’ll encounter here.”

“The change will only affect users creating new accounts on HuffPost. Existing accounts will be grandfathered into the new system.”

HERE’S WHAT I PICK UP FROM THIS: HP wants to move to “verified accounts” It will insist, at some point, that new users register using a verification process such as Facebook and Twitter use. Current users will be “grandfathered in” under the assumption that the vast majority are legitimate and have demonstrated that this is so in their participation at the site. In all cases, the option to have a “screen name” remains in place.

What most concerned me was the failure of HP leadership to recognize what a drastic change the original statement was and how it would affect the membership In no small part the mistake came as a result of not reaching out to community members to test the waters.

At PLANETPOV…our management team operates from principals of collegiality and collaborative participation and decision making. It makes all the difference. So hats off to them!

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gmb007
Member
gmb007

Hi, everyone.

I haven’t been here for a very long time.

Sadly, ever since AOL took over, HuffPost is becoming a tabloid cesspool.

The Planet looks like a cool, beckoning oasis. 🙂

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Haruko Haruhara
Member

Hi guys, sorry for being so absent. It’s been summer!

This idea by HP is horrendous, I think, they have enough problems with stalkers on that site, now they expect people to give up their real identities? For a lot of people, it would take a single search on Twitter or Facebook to find them in real life.

You know there are people crazy enough lurking on HP to start looking people up, contacting their workplaces, etc., with this information. They don’t even have to have accounts on HP, all they have to do is lurk.

It’s an incredibly naive and short-sighted decision by HP, and they handled it poorly, first announcing everyone’s gotta give up their ID, and maybe give HP a credit card number, then saying all old accounts will be grandfathered and only new accounts will have to post with their real names (unless someone flags one of your comments, then you have to use your real name).

Also, there is nothing to stop trolls from setting up fake Facebook accounts to get into HP.

What a mess. People are leaving in droves.

I respect that they’re trying to address the trolls, but it’s kind of their own fault they have so many trolls; they’ve tolerated them for years (clicks, clicks, clicks). As an example, their MLK threads last week were just lousy with racist trolls posting the most vile comments about blacks; I didn’t even bother commenting, why bother trying to fight such vile people. I commented on a Zimmerman story on Raw Story, someone responded with what would have been a tame comment on HP about Zimmerman saved the world from a “future gangbanger” and Raw Story took the comment down and chastised the guy that racism wasn’t welcome on their site. Wow, what a difference.

The real problem at HP is they need more moderators and they need to crack down on the baiting and threadjacking.

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SueInCa
Member

Hi Haruko, I have not been here a great deal either but I do attend VOX pretty regularly. You have come up with some very valid points regarding this entire situation at HP. It has been ages since I even looked at their site so I have no idea what the temp is over there now but I also have no inclination to find out either.

In my mind, Huffpo, starting with that bitch Ariana, fostered the attitude that is on there today. And even when she was owner, she filtered out any derogatory remarks about her management. It is too bad, it was once a nice place to go and discuss like adults the happenings in the world.

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gmb007
Member
gmb007

Haruko, you are so right! The HP troll epidemic is all about CLICKS. They could SO easily get rid of them if they really wanted. And 40 mods for 9M comments per month? Ridiculous.

Great post! 🙂

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MattieT
Member
MattieT

Hello everyone!
I’m more disturbed by the plummeting level of serious ‘news’ reporting over at HP, and the rise in AOL-style gossip, celebrity-stalking and fashion stories, than the idea of losing anonymity.
I think HP has *completely* lost their way in the world of left-leaning, progressive, political thinking and reporting….

While I am uncomfortable revealing real names and information on an opinion blog/site, I might have created a new, intentionally vague FB page for that purpose if I had to. But then again, I honestly don’t think HP is worth that effort at this point, anyhow.

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kesmarn
Admin

Welcome to the Planet, MattieT! Yes, “news” and “HP” can hardly be used in a sentence together any more, can they?

I think you’ll find an entirely different experience here at the Planet. Looking forward to hearing more from you.

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Nirek
Member

Ad, I don’t remember who invited me here but it was well worth my time to come to the planet. I can think of a couple folks that I would like to see come over to the light.

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KillgoreTrout
Member

Unbelievable huh Ad? Does HuffPo WANT to lose hundreds of members? This is the most idiotic move they have made to date, and they’ve made quite a few. What are they thinking? 😉

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