I’d like comment threads to constitute a community. Like any community, there should be room for disagreement (and agreement). There should be education, ideas, humor, criticism–everything that makes up a full-throated discussion.
Comments are moderated. First-time comments are held in a comment queue and approved by me. Once I approve your first comment subsequent comments will not be moderated unless you violate the rules. If you do, your first violation will bring a warning. A second violation may lead to being moderated. That means your future comments would be approved by me if they don’t violate the rules. Once moderated, new violations would lead to banning. Commenters must respect the following:
1. insults, baiting, vulgarity, harassment or abuse is not tolerated. Do not question anyone’s mental health. Do not accuse another of violent motives or threaten violence.
2. do not republish entire articles, posts or comments from external sources; publish an excerpt with a link.
3. support claims using credible sources and links; do NOT make unsupported claims. The more outrageous the claim the more I insist on evidence. If you don’t provide it, then don’t expect to be taken seriously. Links to sources like Debka, CAMERA, MEMRI, Middle East Forum, Palestine Media Watch, Campus Watch, Stoptheism, SamsonBlinded, World News Daily, or other propaganda sites will likely be removed. This blog does not promote right-wing or extreme anti-Zionist sites.
4. false or multiple identities are be banned. Do not choose a comment name like “Anonymous” or any other common name like “John” or “Mary.” Make your name distinguishable from others.
5. Denialism of Palestine or Israel is unacceptable. Comments justifying the annihilation of either people or individual members will not be tolerated. Comments advocating expulsion of Israelis or Palestinians and their resettlement outside Israel will not be permitted.
6. arguing on behalf of subjects such as Mohammed al Durrah, human shields, the Hamas charter, etc. is a waste of time. No conspiracy theories, including 9/11.
7. comments abusing the Holocaust and Holocaust terms (‘Judenrein,’ etc.) may be deleted. Use terms like ‘anti-Semite,’ ‘anti-Israel,’ ‘genocide,’ and ‘Nazi’ carefully as they are often misused. Calling the Gaza withdrawal “ethnic cleansing” is incendiary and not legitimate argument.
8. comments which claim anyone “hates Israel” or is an “enemy of the Jewish people,” “kapo,” “self-hater,” “dhimmi,” “anti-Semite,” “anti-Zionist” or similar terms are grounds for banning. The same holds true for terms like “Zionazi,” etc. You may argue that I’ve made an error as long as you support the claim with credible evidence. But claims that I am a liar are ground for banning.
9. comments must be on-topic and relate directly to the post. Do not repeat yourself. If you demand or dare me to answer a question or ask a question more than once, I will consider you a comment troll.
10. Don’t complain about the way I edit the comment threads, or decisions I’ve made about moderating or banning a commenter. Anyone sending abusive or insulting private e mails will be banned from commenting and added to my personal email spam filter. Plus, I’m unlikely even to open the e mail, let alone read it.
11. I may set limits on the number of comments certain commenters may publish each day if an individual monopolizes the threads. If you publish more than 2-3 comments on a given day and your tone is contentious, you’ve pretty much hit your limit. And if you exceed this regularly, you’re an offender. Do not flood the threads. If you do, your comments may be published at delayed intervals especially if I wish to reply to them. In that case, be patient.
11. Any comments or private e mail including a physical threat will be reported to my local police department along with any personal identifying information about the perpetrator. I take such threats SERIOUSLY and react proactively.
12. Comments should be written specifically for this site and in reply to something published here. Any comments already published at other sites may be deleted.
Those who comment here are house guests. Anyone who treats my home with disrespect will receive no respect in return. Anyone who violates the rules above may find comments moderated or banned. Anyone who is a troll, stalker, or abuser may be banned.
Blogs are the property of the owner. If you can’t say what you like here following the rules you won’t be welcome.
Comments that take issue with my views are fine. But comments containing vicious, obscene, abusive, racist content have forced me to write and enforce these rules.
Proxy servers: If you use a proxy server to view this blog, don’t. I view such readers and commenters with suspicion. If you publish comments using a proxy server you probably have something to hide. This may cause your comment privileges to be restricted.
E-mail: Readers who send private e-mail should specify whether or not they wish their correspondence to be private. I will generally honor such requests unless I find the original e mail offensive. If you do not specify, your message may be published either in paraphrase or quotation. For e-mails sufficiently nasty or hostile, even a demand for privacy may not be honored and can result in banning from the comment threads as well.
Please do not quote private e mail I write to you without permission. I will likely give it, but want to be asked so that I know I will be quoted publicly before I am.