Dear Naked Capitalism friends,
It’s fundraising week at Naked Capitalism which is when I think about how my perception of so many events is shaped by the posts and comments here. For the past couple of years, Naked Capitalism has been vitally important to my safety. Is there any other reliable source for COVID-19 information? Between Yves’s and other authors’ COVID posts, the daily links, Lambert’s in-depth posts on aerosol spread, wastewater analysis, & his compilation of charts in the Water Cooler, and the additional information contributed by our COVID Brain Trust and reliable commenters, I know I’m more up-to-date than anyone else I know.
That’s worth a lot to me – and I’ve always chipped in during Fundraising Week to support Naked Capitalism. For several years, I’ve donated monthly by PayPal’s subscription option. But I supplement that with a one-time booster donation (and sometimes two because the fundraising posts can be that enticing.) Please take a minute to make your donation – the tip-jar is here.
When I was asked if I’d be interested in moderating comments I was thrilled and honored. Because Naked Capitalism has the best commenters on any website, I knew that moderation was something taken very seriously here. And they thought I could be a help? Wow!
So it’s been a little over half a year and I think it’s going pretty well. I get to see the dark underbelly of the comments that don’t make the grade and might possibly get the commenter banned for all time. Which is interesting (trolls can be inventive) but not the best part. The best part is being a liberator of stuck comments; when I see the reason the comment is in moderation but it makes a positive contribution to Naked Capitalism and should be approved. That happens between 60 and 100 times a day, so it’s a big deal.
The dark underbelly? I don’t want to dignify that with a number. Besides, it’s nothing compared to moderating comments on a Hillary Blog through the 2008 election. THAT was dark. During the most intense period (the weeks before and during the 2008 Democratic Convention) The Confluence was targeted by thousands of trolls and spammers an hour (I imagined a huge floor in a Chicago Skyscraper filled with cubicles staffed with obsessed Obama supporters cranking out spam-generating macros designed to flood the site and bring us to our knees). Skynet couldn’t keep up. I was skimming the moderation queue to approve comments and deleting the rest in bulk action without a break for hours at a stretch.
That’s powerful but not impressive. Anyone can delete trolls. I do that here (NOT to that extent) But the part that’s interesting is getting to know our commenters. I’ve been a visitor at Naked Capitalism for over a decade – reading the posts daily and posting my own comments now and then. But I had no idea how many people comment on several posts every day. They aren’t just skimming the post and jumping in with a “First” or “+1.”
Naked Capitalism commenters live all over the world. They have the depth of knowledge to contribute facts, links and anecdotes, and stories (!! Speaking of contributions – you can contribute to the fundraiser by visiting the tip-jar over here!) that relate to our posts that provide an impressive amount of added value. Some of it comes from a lifetime of working in a relevant profession. But whether a professional or intellectual interest, our commenters are articulate, rational, generous, and mostly kind.
I love getting to help share their work on Naked Capitalism. And I love being a part of the Naked Capitalism Crew.
Please join me this fundraising week in making a contribution (just one click to The Tip-Jar) to Naked Capitalism.