A Brief History of the End of the Comments

From the magazine “Wire”

Earlier this week, Vice’s technology and science news site Motherboard dropped its comments section, opting to replace it with an old school “letters to the editor” feature. Then Reddit launched a news site called Upvoted that didn’t include a comments section. (You can still comment on the stories on Reddit itself.)

What’s going on here? For years, comment boxes have been a staple of the online experience. You’ll find them everywhere, from The New York Times to Fox News to The Economist. But as online audiences have grown, the pain of moderating conversations on the web has grown, too. And in many cases, the most vibrant conversations about a particular article or topic are happening on sites like Facebook and Twitter. So many media companies are giving up on comments, at least for now. So far this year, Bloomberg, The Verge, The Daily Beast and now Motherboard have all dropped their comments feature.

While it’s too soon to say that comment sections are outright dying— there are plenty of major sites that still have comments, including WIRED—it’s safe to say there’s a trend towards replacing them with something else. Here’s a brief history of major publications pulling the plug on comments. Feel free to suggest additions to the timeline in, well, the comments.

Ovi_001September 24, 2012: The Atlantic launches the business news site Quartz without a comments section, but adds comments in the form of “annotations” nearly a year later.

September 24, 2013: Popular Science becomes one of the first major publications to ditch its comments feature, citing studies that found that blog comments can have a profound effect on readers’ perceptions of science. “If you carry out those results to their logical end—commenters shape public opinion; public opinion shapes public policy; public policy shapes how and whether and what research gets funded—you start to see why we feel compelled to hit the “off” switch,” former digital editor Suzanne LaBarre wrote in the site’s announcement.

April 12, 2014: The Chicago Sun-Times suspends its comment feature, citing concerns over the “tone and quality” of the comments while its team developed a new discussion system. Most articles on the site still don’t allow comments.

August 2014: CNN quietly disables comments on most stories sometime during the protests in Ferguson, Missouri.

November 7, 2014: Reuters drops comments for all of its stories except its opinion pieces, saying that social media is a better place for discussion. “Those communities offer vibrant conversation and, importantly, are self-policed by participants to keep on the fringes those who would abuse the privilege of commenting,” executive editor Dan Colarusso wrote in the company’s announcement.

November 20, 2014: Popular tech news site Recode follows suit, also citing social media as the best way for readers to provide feedback.

December 15, 2014: The winter of comment discontent kicks into high gear as The Week pulls the plug on comments.

December 16, 2014: The very next day, so does the millennial-focused Mic.com, proving that comment-phobia isn’t just for old media.

January 27, 2015 Bloomberg’s website relaunches with no comments.

July 6, 2015: Tech news site The Verge announces that it’s shutting off comments for most articles for the duration fo the summer. Most articles still don’t have comments enabled today.

uly 7, 2015: WIRED launches our new “short post” format, which doesn’t include a comments section.

July 27, 2015: Internet community news site The Daily Dot switches off comments.

August 19, 2015: So does The Daily Beast, but the site claims that it’s working on “multiple ways to bring you an upgraded commenting experience.”

October 5, 2015: Vice Motherboard announces that it’s replacing its comments feature with a weekly “letters to the editor” feature.

October 6, 2015: Reddit launches its news site Upvoted, which has no way to comment on or “upvote” things directly on the site. You can guess where the site’s owners hope discussions will take place.

Klint Finley

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Remember to forget by Katerina Charisi

…She wears a long white dress that reaches under her knees and a leather top jacket, torn on the elbows. Her hair, a mix of silver and faded blond with a few scattered black locks. She is pretty. She looks defiant and confident. She doesn’t wear any make up on, except some black eye shadow. She doesn’t even carry a purse. There is something odd in the way she carries herself I can’t explain. She looks like a hippie, but then I notice a black motorbike helmet next to her betraying a motorcycle somewhere around. Then I see her black, motor boots. She has a child- looking face, but she holds the cigarette between her lips like a macho biker. Deep puffs – exhaling large menthol clouds of white smoke. Suddenly I feel ashamed for my naked feet and my shoes with all that dried mud on them.

That woman was Emily Winter. That’s how I met her for the first time, that’s how I remember her and that’s how she visited me earlier today, after a long time. And I know that she came to me determined to stay.

Welcome Home, Emily.

Read more, HERE!

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The Mortals of the Megapolis – FREE EBOOK

This is the first EBook of a series that we are going to gradually publish under the name “Mortals of the Megapolis”

The idea came in one of those surreal conversations we have too often with Catherine. Talking through internet, the gap of distance doesn’t help to cover the gap of age and sometimes one of us (usually it is me) is left behind talking about something past. And this conversation had a taste from the past. We were talking about a “game”.

You must know the “game”; we have all played it. You see somebody and you start imagining from conversations to personal details. “He is definitely a banker” or “She is a teacher in a kindergarten.” And then it was an internet page I liked, this is where the ‘I was left behind in another conversation’ came. There is an internet site I had seen and I really liked it. Photos of random people in the streets of a metropolis and a few words from them under the photo. I thought it was fantastic.

Then the only thing left was to combine the two …conversations and create the “Mortals of the Megapolis”.

This is the first book of a hopefully series of books with the mortals who live around us and talk to our imagination. In the meantime new travellers have joined Catherine and me with their imagination in our Megapolis and in the near future you will have the chance to meet them.

For now, please do download the EBook HERE and enjoy our first …mortals!

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Brother Wolf and Sister Wren – FREE EBOOK

Brother Wolf and Sister Wren is a collection of short stories written by the talented Ms Abigail George. All her stories come from the heart of South Africa projecting the spirit of the rainbow but also for long tortured state.

Brother Wolf and Sister Wren is Abigail George’s way to invite to into the secrets of the soul of this land. Brother wolf and sister wren are full of deep feelings, inspirations and energy. You just have to try to follow them. Abigail’s short stories are accompanied but the equally inspirational illustrations made by Thanos Raftopoulos.

Download HERE!

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Child trafficking – Ovi Magazine “Awareness” Campaign


Child trafficking victims have risen from 20 per cent to 27 per cent. Of every three child victims, two are girls and one is a boy.

Gender and age profile of victims detected globally: 59% Women – 14% Men – 17% Girls and 10% were Boys.

600,000 to 800,000 women, children and men bought and sold across international borders every year and exploited for forced labor or commercial sex (U.S. Government)

When internal trafficking victims are added to the estimates, the number of victims annually is in the range of 2 to 4 million

50% of those victims are estimated to be children

It is estimated that 76 percent of transactions for sex with underage girls start on the Internet

2 million children are subjected to prostitution in the global commercial sex trade (UNICEF)

There are 20.9 Million victims of Trafficking World wide as of 2012

1.5 Million victims in the United States

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Life in the Age of Extinctions volume 2 – Threshold – FREE EBOOK

Life in the Age of Extinctions volume 2 – Threshold is David Sparenberg’s closure after three years following the path his soul followed and mother earth led him. A path that started with his first book, “Life in the Age of Extinctions volume 1” also published by Ovi magazine.

David is contemporary as much his message is eternal. His thoughts float full of energy, embracing wishes, thoughts and dreams. Tens of thousands read his first book, a book he was extending his hand to meet you, in his second book he is embracing the reader, he joins the reader in search of harmony.

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Ovi Magazine “Awareness” Campaign II

life_0014More than a third of the population in Bulgaria, Romania, Greece, Latvia and Hungary are at risk of poverty and social exclusion, according to a new report. In half of the EU’s 28 member states, at least one in three children live in poverty.

The report, Poverty and Inequalities on the Rise – Just social systems needed as the solution!, was published on Thursday February 19th 2015 by Caritas Europa, an umbrella organisation which fights poverty and social exclusion.

It found disturbing levels of deprivation in the seven EU countries worst hit by the economic crisis: Cyprus, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Portugal, Romania and Spain.

According to the report, almost half of Bulgarians (48%) and more than 40% of Romanians are currently at risk of poverty.

In fourteen out of the EU’s 28 member states, one in three children are considered to be living in poverty.

The Caritas figures are broadly confirmed by the EU’s official statistical agency, Eurostat, which ascertained that one in four citizens were at risk of poverty and social exclusion in 2013.

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