Turning off the comments at redding.com

I discovered this by accident. Recently, redding.com switched using Facebook to host their reader comments. For a while, I saw no comments on any article. It was a revelation. I really don’t care that much what a random group of strangers thinks about everything written at redding.com. It was nice.

But then I saw others commenting on Facebook about the comments at redding.com (negative comments, of course). So I began to wonder if it was just me who couldn’t see the comments. Sure enough, it was just me.

I use Chrome. I had previously installed a privacy plug-in named https://disconnect.me/  It was not letting Facebook requests into my browser, effectively shutting off the comments.

Disconnect me3
I like this plug-in. The free version lets you see who is tracking you and making requests at various websites, and you can turn them on or off with a software switch. So the default setting turns off the comments at redding.com. And several other things as well. The plug-in counts 66 things at redding.com at my browser:
Disconnect me RS

Obviously you can leave the comments available, and choose not to read them for the same refreshing experience. But just like the ever popular car-wreck-rubbernecker analogy, I just always looked. And doing so, I was nearly always disappointed. The rare insight gained was not nearly valuable enough to offset the barrage of negativity I could not un-see.

So now they are simply switched off.

I suppose I’d forgotten just how pleasant it can be to simply read an article, and move on. No rubbernecking the wreckage. As revelations go, this one wasn’t earth shattering. But it’s been a change for the better.

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One Response to Turning off the comments at redding.com

  1. I have a FB account– and SOMETIMES I can log on to Redding.com to read the comments, and sometimes I can’t. It’s a mystery to me why/when it works – I’m using Safari on a Mac.

    But you are ABSOLUTELY right – the news without the comments is utterly refreshing. So nice to read professional journalists covering the news without having to scroll through the trolls, miscreants and chronically unhappy people who find it necessary to share their angry opinions. Our community already looks better.

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