The British newspaper, the Telegraph & Argus, axed its online comments section because of “hate-filled, racist, antisemitic or Islamophobic tirades.”
The Telegraph & Argus is based in Bradford, “one of Britain’s most racially diverse cities,” according to the Guardian.
“We’re not against robust debate on issues of public interest – far from it,” the newspaper explained. “But sadly, an ever-more-vocal minority of our site’s visitors appear to be intent on abusing the ability to comment. They lurk beneath even the most innocuous of stories to grind out personal grudges, rail against the council or the T&A or – worse – pollute the comments section with hate-filled, racist, anti-Semitic or Islamophobic tirades.”
Some such comments used phrases like “third-world ghettos” and “vile far-right savages,” according to the Telegraph & Argus, which noted that they banned those commenters. The problem is that many of those commenters would then set up a new account and post “the same poison.”
Readers can, however, go to the Telegraph & Argus‘s Facebook page to post comments, the newspaper said. And, the paper said it may later reinstate the comments section.