I've had this post on the back burner for awhile, and the time has come to put it up and make it a page, as well. I'd like to dispel some misunderstandings about commenting on this blog, and to provide some real-life examples to put things into perspective. For those of you with your own blogs, if you can't relate to this yet, you will likely be able to in the future.
1. You're all about free speech, and yet you moderate your comments. That's unfair!
Contrary to what some believe, free speech does not apply to commenters. Most major blogs, newspapers, magazines, and websites moderate their comments in some form due to the hailstorm of crazy that is the Internet. For some real life examples, consider this:
At political rallies, only certain people are chosen to speak, and usually plan ahead of time what they will say. In magazines, they never publish every letter to the editor they receive; they only pick a few to use. In newspapers, op-ed pieces are carefully chosen from a huge pool. On the TV news, much more footage is taken than actually goes into a broadcast; it is meticulously pared down to only certain interviews or certain parts of interviews. On the radio, only certain callers are picked to speak on the air.