A comment about comments

by Walter Olson on September 1, 2008

I mostly leave regular visitors alone to say what they want in our comments section, whether or not I agree. That being said:

Given this site’s subject matter, we often find ourselves talking about cases of injury or death that pose unthinkable tragedies to the persons and families involved. Given the identifying material in the stories, it is inevitable that members of those families, or others who deeply care about the injured persons, or the persons themselves, will at some point come to the site and read what we have said.

When we voice our disagreement with the claims made in resulting lawsuits, it can be helpful to imagine those family members’ faces as being among those in the audience, and let our words be shaped accordingly. I’m sure I sometimes fall short of following this advice myself, but when I do follow it, I always feel like more of a grown-up.

{ 2 comments }

1 Joe Bingham 09.02.08 at 10:06 am

I mostly agree, and although I regularly fail, I try to do the same thing.

Just to be devil’s advocate, though–if you can’t make fun of the most ridiculous people in the world, who can you make fun of? This blog’s appeal is not just some cerebral analysis of lawsuit merits. It’s also the entertainment value of the unparalleled stupidity of some of the plaintiffs (or those they survive).

Of course, that said, we should try not to hurt their families–especially, I suppose, given that there may be family members affected who aren’t putting themselves in the public eye by participating in the lawsuits.

2 Eric Turkewitz 09.02.08 at 5:02 pm

Well put.

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