Policies page

Pre-intro note for commenters

The nature of Blogspot comments is such that many highly-political bloggers have banned 'Anonymous' or 'Unknown' as comment author. WordPress [such as in our other page NOWP, accessible top of sidebar] do not cause Anons to occur as no one is Anon at their sites.

One way out of this is to have this blog across both a Blogspot [always moderated] and WordPress [initial moderation, thereafter unfettered commenting] site but that creates two further issues.

a.  

[i]  No commenter data at all shows to the blog admin at a Blogspot site, it does though show to Blogspot/Google, plus if the blog admin is not physically around [asleep, whatever], then by definition, comment approval is delayed.

As the admin, I get around this by assuring regulars [known-knowns] that it's on a 'see moniker-click through' basis when awake and so it has been since the site reboot [Jan 2020], with rare exceptions.  Those exceptions are only because a blog provision [further down this page] has been breached, which can easily be inadvertent.  It's a rare event though and I always spell out why.

[ii]  That word 'moniker' is a core requirement for any Anon or Unknown, not for my benefit in the least but for other readers/commenters to know whom they're addressing in reply. It's a courtesy to readers themselves.  This blog has some interaction, which requires that there's at least some name to address in discussion.  Simple courtesy but as admin, I do enforce this.

Thus, if you comment as Anon/Unknown, the first word in your comment needs to be your designated moniker you've invented and please stick to that same moniker to make discussion possible.

b.  Word Press blogs work on the basis of first comment moderated, subsequent comments automatic. The advantage for readers is that their comment appears at any time they choose, esp. overnight.  

The downside is that all WordPress comments show the admin email and IP, which by definition means WordPress itself also sees it.

My way around that is to categorically state to reader/commenters at WP that never, ever would that info be divulged to anyone, not to a friend, not to a foe, for any reason whatever.  You can quote me on this. I never have, I never shall. Were I coerced, say under threat from above, I'd just delete your comments to protect you if you wished, if you permitted.

Intro [finally]

Blogs, it seems to me [and for all of this policy page, references to the first person singular mean the blog admin] are, post-2005, the earliest form of mass social media, followed by the short form Twitters, Gab, the rise of the vlog etc. ... the blog format has certain conventions and also netiquette [the rules goverining their use].

The host [the provider] does have a say in the matter ... should have as well ... on a 'free' blog service, they have their rules.  Self-hosted are more free but are still subject to national laws, especially regarding copyright.

Blogs range from innocuous personal diaries to highly politicised, mass traffic sites and though all should have a policies link either in the navbar above or in the sidebar or sometimes in the footer, it's at far more of a premium with highly scrutinised weblogs, esp. highly-politicised.

This blog, though highly-politicised, aims for lower traffic, takes steps to lower traffic, hence the name.

Contributors

N.O. has always relied on contributors and guest posters but in recent years, with deep polarisation on issues via the globocabal and the consequent rise of paid [in many cases] trolls to wreck any social media with views contrary to that of the globocabal ... the old model of 'free for all' discussion simply does not fly anymore.

I do watch [with a sigh] full-on libertarian blogs desperately try to keep discussion open, but inevitably they are forced these days to adopt new tactics in comments which involve deleting and that dread word censorship.

At N.O., I've tried to do it this way  

Rather than being a 'multi-author' blog, the admin takes full editorial responsibility for what appears on these pages and contributors therefore understand that they have almost total editorial control over personal content but not total - I do not ask contributors to write on any topic nor ask them not to, with these two exceptions:

1.  There are legal and bloghost limits, e.g. on copyright, attribution, images of sex and violence of a gratuitous nature [as distinct from passing reportage] and that's pretty strictly enforced but well known by regular readers - there've been enough posts on it for regulars to know the limits. 

The best criterion is ... if it is something nasty which 'cannot be unseen', if it's dwelt upon, indulged in, then it's not going up.

2.  Expletives follow the same tone - fine as intensifiers but not as the lingua franca of the blog.  N.O. aims to be more broadsheet in presentation than tabloid, i.e. it needs to be fact-based and have a tone that makes it readable by the 'middling' type of reader, even if the topics themselves or opinions can be hardline.  The template and graphics reinforce that message.

That's almost never, over the history of the blog, been an issue - it's a longrunning blog [2006] and the tone is a known-known, contributors self-regulate and I attempt a hands-off, light touch.  I never alter the editorial content of someone's contribution but I have, a few times, simply not posted a link or comment if it breaches 1 and 2 above here. 

Of late, I leave typos in as a rule on regular or guest items.

When I do fail to post something sent, odds are that it's up anyway in comments, or else over at the other site.   

Occasionally not so though ... since the reboot in Jan 2021, I've only a handful of times not posted something by a regular in any way at all. Given the thousands of items posted, that's a miniscule percentage and it's almost always resulted in some friction and angst, which in itself is telling about the general way this blog runs.

Regulars are always more heavily favoured and slack is given far more to them of course.  Should go without saying.

Disputes between regulars and me

Speaking to regulars here you understand, not occasional commenters - by my lights, I really do attempt to stay away from antagonising [not easy for someone whose life has been one of near constant warring] and we all greatly appreciate contributions, they are the lifeblood of this blog if it wishes to stay cutting edge in reportage.

I do not personalise on character, I avoid getting personal afap because it's a waste of time, but I do strictly enforce nos. 1 and 2 above, because I must do to stay afloat.  That's all there is on that point.

Errors of fact

Unlike our detractors who seem to possess some godlike infallibility they apply to themselves [their 'Science' is settled], we are human here and errors almost certainly will initially occur in developing situations, across various sources and that's our prime directive at N.O. - to find out what's really happening on this topic or that and constantly adjust.

Therefore, as with proper science, not the rubbish pseudo-Science of the dogmatic 'Science is settled' mob, we are forever tweaking, altering, correcting ... please cut us some slack.  What seems true at this moment might have altered by tomorrow morning.

However, our core politics do not.  Vaguely sceptical on everything Woke or insane, anti-human, anti-freedom, our politics here are best judged by the content put out.  Labelling no longer helps, as it may have two decades ago.

James Higham, March 31st, 2022, tweaked April 3rd.

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