A Comment About Changes in the Comments and Other Bullets

changes next exitI’ve always been a strong proponent of allowing guests – i.e., folks not “registered” for a site – to comment on posts here. Requiring registration is a barrier to entry, however minimal, that some people will simply never cross. And I’d always wanted to encourage as much free, open communication as possible. I also wanted to get as much feedback as possible, and it tends to be the case that some of the most critical feedback will come from folks who feel that slight, additional security blanket of anonymity. I wanted the critical feedback.

Alas, as we’ve all seen over the past couple of years, and increasingly over the past few months, the comments have deteriorated into something short of a net positive experience. It is with tremendous regret that I’m thinking that the only way to get things back on track is to close comments to guests, and require registration for commenting. I imagine that there’s probably a reason that essentially every large site in the world requires registration for comments, and I think what we’ve been experiencing here is a pretty good example of why. So, the current plan is start requiring registration to comment on January 1. It’ll just be a simple name/email kind of thing, but I think we’ll find the overall quality of the comments will increase dramatically. This is your heads up.

  • A profile in the Tribune on new WGN Radio color man Ron Coomer. The man who will sit next to Pat Hughes in the booth next year grew up a Cubs fan, and is also friends with fellow noted Cubs fan, Eddie Vedder. Given that Vedder’s other famous baseball friend – Theo Epstein – also came to Chicago to be part of the Cubs’ organization, I think it’s pretty clear what’s going on here. Someone get Vedder Masahiro Tanaka’s phone number and set up a play date.
  • For those who saw Jorge Soler in the AFL, and/or for the scouts who seemed to suggest he was dogging it, Sahadev Sharma reports that Soler was indeed asked by the Cubs to take it easy on grounders when he was running out of the box. What looked like loafing was actually Soler being extra careful not to re-injure the stress-fractured leg, which cost him more than half of the 2013 season. Hopefully he’ll be 100% in the Spring.
  • Yesterday, CSN Chicago created quite a stir when an article went up, noting that Dan Dakich had claimed, during a college basketball game, that the Cubs signed Jeff Samardzija to a five-year, $55 million extension. The Twitters were on fire (and I was sitting in the pews at a wedding, thinking, “Please don’t let this be true – at least not for another hour or so”). The general consensus, however, was the Dakich was merely saying Samardzija should accept the reported extension offer, not that he had already. My night of dancing was saved. Nothing to see. (Pet peeve: the CSN article now no longer exists, and the original tweet has been deleted. I’ve always thought, in these situations, the better course is to leave the article up, but clearly edit it at the top to note the error – otherwise, the story lives on in the minds of folks who can’t seem to find it, but swear they saw that Samardzija had been extended. I know that no publication wants to have inaccurate information on its portal, so I understand the deletion, I just think that approach might actually make things worse.)
  • Jay gets you Bears fans ready for a huge game day with his morning Bullets.

Brett Taylor is the editor and lead writer at Bleacher Nation, and can also be found as Bleacher Nation on Twitter and on Facebook.

225 responses to “A Comment About Changes in the Comments and Other Bullets”

  1. potvin48

    If this prevents even one douchebaggy comment, this it is a good decision :)

  2. cubbiekoolaid2015

    (Formerly someday…2015?) Other then having to change my name, I think this change will only better an already amazing site. Good job Brett!

  3. will

    Brett why didn’t u want the shark signing to be true i thought u were pro extending him

    1. MichiganGoat

      He didn’t want to have to deal with it while he was at a wedding and miss out on all the dancing… btw Brett you’ve gone to a ton of wedding it seems.

      1. Internet Random

        He’s that age.

      2. hansman1982

        He is of the age now where all the marriages that failed thenfirst time are coming back around with new ones.

        The 30′s are fun!!!

  4. Bwin

    Please let it be noted that Dan Dakich is a great Cub fan.

  5. mjhurdle

    Are the comments for the Bears and the Cubs sides different?
    Whenever I try to comment on the Bears pages, it tells me to login. But when I try the same WordPress login that I use on the Cubs side, it tells me that the login is incorrect.

    Will the registration for the Bleacher nation Cubs side cover the Bears side as well?

  6. Ivy Walls

    I came here after a long relationship which was taken over by some who akin to sitting next to a patron at a night game be it Wrigley or Miller who says he is a Cub fan and think that anything can be critical including the more intelligent or informed thoughts of a regular observer over decades, many in the original group date back to newsgroups rarely post or comment so they too have gravitated to smaller more insightful fans, agree or disagree for the most part inciting flames and anger is not the culture, UNTIL RECENTLY an infection has come about….lack of patience or knowledge or both or some other motivation….who knows

    but I like when there is a registration and a way to email a posser

  7. Mayhem

    Brett regarding comment policy. If posters are now required to sign up and verify email address, can you please post your privacy policy in clear lawyer-ly terms? Millions of verified addresses of Cub fans can be valuable and sold to ticket brokers, sports merchandisers, etc.. If it is your intention to have the option to do so in the future, that’s ok by me, but I would think most people would like to know in clear specific terms, if our email addresses will be 100% private and not sold to marketers or used for any other unusual purpose. Thanks.

    1. ClevelandCubsFan

      “clear” and “lawyer-ly”… I think we have some unreasonable expectations here….

  8. jh03

    Yeah, I just registered but it’s not letting me log-in. Is that just because it’s not officially in use yet?

  9. jmc

    I’m confused which is nothing unusual for me. Everytime I comment email and website address comes up. What else do we have to do the register after January 1st?

  10. rich

    How is it we get stuck with Brennaman again doing the Bear game . He is so bias against the Bears so some reason i’m not totally sure of !

    1. Rebuilding

      Much like his Dad he hates everything about Chicago. It was strange having him as the Cubs play by play guy when you could tell he was actively rooting for the Reds

  11. Patrick W.

    Does this mean I have to kill Bluffer McBluffington Jr. ?

    1. Pat

      You’re bluffing, you would never kill him.

  12. Funn Dave

    Sad day. I heartily approved of everything in the first paragraph, but I def get where you’re coming from with the change. However, given the fact that many of the malicious or overly critical comments (myself included in the latter) come from regular posters with usernames, I wonder how much difference it will really make.

    1. The Cleanup Poster

      I thought the same thing.

    2. DarthHater

      I think the idea is to make life more difficult for guys like the one the other day who kept posting with multiple screen names like “Eaton Beavur,” etc.

  13. DarthHater

    Okay, Bert. Registered, but have not gotten a confirmation email. What’s up?

    1. hansman1982

      You’re not welcome in the New BN world. (Pushes darth off the ship with his boot)

      1. DarthHater

        I’m in, baby! Del Boca Vista here I come!

  14. Jono

    Darth Vedder?

  15. Jono

    Good news for BN commenters: I may use this as a chance to save time throughout the day and better concentrate on work by not registering and quit BN comments. Don’t worry, brett, you’ll still get my eyeballs on your articles.

    1. DarthHater

      Why is that good news?

      1. Jono

        So people will be free to use “we” as much as their hearts desire ;)

  16. ferris

    Im fine w keepn shark but not turning down 5-55…..he signs that or we trade him,hes done little we offered 55m on potential

  17. DarthHater


    For the BN Bears site, do we login separately but using the same account?

  18. DougyD


  19. Dale Jr

    Go packers

    1. Jono

      Brett, can we get this censored?

    2. The Cleanup Poster

      +1go Packers!!! My dad(god rest his soul) corrupted me at an early age, and poisoned my mind with pro Packer propaganda.

      1. DarthHater

        Take it to the BN Bears board, where you can be more roundly hated. :-P

  20. Manntastic

    Just a suggestion. If you’re going to revamp the comments…is there a way to set it up to get an email when someone replys to you comment? It would make it easier to follow the conversation.
    Love the site, I’ve checked it ~15 times a day for several years

    1. Jono

      that is a great idea

  21. Spoda17

    Brett, for what it’s worth, I totally support making people register to comment. Thanks for the site.

    1. Cyranojoe

      Ditto. Painless procedure, and will allow you to add more features to commenting in the long run, I bet.

    2. TOOT

      Dude, this site is already earmarked as “unsafe” by Norton. If you want to pass out e-mail address go ahead. Give your SSN# while you are at it. Good luck.

      1. ClevelandCubsFan

        In my humble opinion, if you’re trusting Norton to decide what’s safe or not on the Internet, that’s your bigger problem.

        Also, you’re wrong or something:



        1. ClevelandCubsFan


          1. ClevelandCubsFan

            Realized what I did wrong. Better late than never…


        2. TOOT

          There has been issues with the site in the past. That’s undeniable. I personally will NOT open an email from the site.(viruses) But it is America, do as you please.

        3. TOOT

          Do you work for Macaffee?

          1. mjhurdle

            no worries. McAfee says its safe too.


            0-2 so far.

            1. TOOT

              Do as you please. I’ll by my gut feeling on yhis issue.

        4. TOOT

          Nothing against Brett, but he is NOT head of a “corporation” and can’t ask for a email for a simple comment. We have people looking into this and the legal implications.

          1. DarthHater

            Hey, Brett! Any chance you could accelerate the start date for making registration a requirement?

            1. TOOT

              Yes. Any? (LOL)

          2. ClevelandCubsFan

            People looking into this. So funny. Nothing against TOOTS (the more you do them better you feel) but I’d bet this is a corporation. .. Though maybe not a “corporation”. Not sure the precise legal distinction produced by the quotes.

            Anyone got the line on whether Brett had it set up as sn LLC….?

            Also pretty sure it doesn’t matter.

            1. TOOT

              It’s TOOT.

            2. TOOT

              Def—To sound LOUDLY

          3. fromthemitten

            lol look at the bottom “Get My Bat Media LLC” I’m pretty sure a former lawyer knows what he’s doing…

            1. fromthemitten

              also I’m not a lawyer but I sure did play one on public access cable a couple times but some of your statements about the site being unsafe and a hazard to your computer could be construed as libel since it is patently untrue and potentially damaging to Brett’s business… just sayin’ people in glass houses shouldn’t throw rocks

    3. TOOT

      Oh, and DON’T open a email requesting an authorization of your email address from anyone, especially a questionable web sites. Just good advice. Not insinuating anything.

    4. TOOT

      This is a legal can of worms.

      1. MichiganGoat

        Well TOOT I guess we won’t be seeing you after the new year.

        1. TOOT

          Probably not.

        2. TOOT

          Anyway, have a good Christmas and New Year! It’s been fun, but I do get political, and stand my ground. So be it. I’ll still read andagree/disagree.

          1. DarthHater

            Merry Christmas, Toot. Don’t drink the kool-aid. :-P

            1. TOOT

              Alright, I’ll take it easy. You do the same.

  22. LWeb23

    I’m glad BN is moving towards registration. Unless it’s major news (which there hasn’t been a whole lot of), I’ve stopped looking at/being involved in comments for the most part since about August. That has led me to visit BN less frequently. While I love the site and the content Brett, I’m really looking forward to the change and getting back into it.

  23. Boogens

    I support your position completely, Brett. Hopefully it will make a difference.

  24. Die hard

    Groucho Marx’s letter of resignation to the Friars’ Club: “I don’t want to belong to any club that would accept me as one of its members.”

    1. DarthHater

      Well, Brett, looks like the only way to keep Die hard is to ban him.

  25. Die hard

    Thought us old fart timers would be grandfathered?

  26. DarthHater

    Seems like this new comment policy is about as earth-shaking as a Cubs off-season transaction. :-P

    1. Professional High A


  27. cub4life

    Awesome comment…..wish I knew them both so I can set up that play date……..Tanaka come hang out at your friends place for a few years….or the rest of your career. ….its a fun place to hang

  28. Evolution

    By requiring registration, you’ll soon find out that 88% of all site members have some variation of “turd” in their

  29. Evolution

    email address…

  30. Evolution

    Complete silence…

    OH…COME ON! Like I’m the only one…

    1. DarthHater

      I started to respond, but it just seemed too juvenile… :-P

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