The End of Civility on The Verge
Back when The Verge was still new, one of the reasons I switched was becuase of the rather troll-free and flame-free comments. The community was great. I could praise a product without fear of being labeled a fanboy. I could also criticize something and not get attacked by fanboys. Infact, many of those criticisms ended up being rather thoughtful discussions on how the product could improve. Anyway, the point that I'm trying to get at is that this was a tech-lover paradise.
Recently, I've noticed an uptick in the number of troll-like users who have come on board. I'm not talking about people who are criticizing a product that I happen to like. I'm talking about the people who spew stupid comments like "[Company A] sux, [Company B] is the best," "[Company C] will die by the hands of [Company A]," etc. These posts are annoying and just don't belong. I've put up with it though since the number of trolls were relatively low.
Today on the new Nokia Lumia 900 review, I think things have finally erupted. I've seen people flame others, outright make up lies about products, give their usuall [company A] is better than [company B] posts. Overall, this makes me sad. I wish that we could go back to the days where people could have a civilized discussion about an article. I understand that some people may not agtee with the views of an article, but there are gentle, civilized ways of expressing that opinon.
I'm honestly not sure what the best action is at this point. Banning people doesn't always work. Sometimes innocent people get banned by accident. Sometime, the offenders just come back under another username. Downranking doesn't seem to work either. Technically, The verge does have an option to flag a post as trolling, but I'm not too sure how effective that is. So I ask, what do the mannered people of The Verge think? What can be done to resore the community to its former glory? At this point, I think the trolls have moved in.