Now that news sites have allowed Facebook users to comment on their stories, more people have now the power to voice out their personal opinions on these boards and forums. It has made discussions a lot easier and more accessible to the public.
However, not everything said in the comment section are actually ethical. It’s not like we wish to deprive anyone of their freedom to speak, but every freedom has its own set of responsibilities and repercussions to be weighed. We, citizen journalists (as netizen commentators), must advocate a forum where intellectual and worthwhile discussions are welcomed and where bigotry and unreasonable hate is absolutely discouraged because may readers will feel uncomfortable and demoralized even due to flame wars (which has caused my news sites to monitor their comment sections on a daily basis, and worst, phase out the entire comment section).
But in what ways do we act in order to make it possible? Here are some guidelines we can reflect upon before we click ‘post.’
- Is your comment even related to the story? (Or you’re just trolling in the deep and spamming the forum with your nonsense?)
2. Do we stereotype or degrade other religions/races/members of the opposite sex?
3. In case of in-depth opinions or additional information, is the information stated in your comment factual and well-researched?
4. In case of jokes, are they wholesome? (If they are threatening or unreasonably offensive, better think again.)
5. Do we justify our reactions to a certain story? (Although there’s no rule which states that every comment should be like that, it is encouraged to do it as much as we can.)
6. If you choose to be anonymous, in what ways do you wish to use hiding as a means of helping people? (It’d be fun if you have such reasons instead of hiding to have the freedom to post unethical comments.)
Well, I hope that it helped. If you have any more additions to the list, kindly comment. Thank you. 🙂