I see this blog as a sort of intellectual ‘salon’ (that’s salon, not saloon!). Perhaps, more accurately, it’s a kind of digital dining table around which people can gather to discuss all those subjects you’re not supposed to mention in ‘polite company’ – especially religion and politics.
Although this is a public blog, it is a private space. Commenting here is a privilege, not a right.
I have a liberal attitude towards moderation, but I do not guarantee I will publish all comments – even those from personal friends.
I will delete comments that, in my opinion (and that’s all that counts here), vilify or will cause undue offence to minority groups or women. I will also delete comments that are likely to land me, or you, in jail for defamation or encourage bands of angry religionists to assemble at my gate with pitchforks and flaming torches. Homophobia, Islamaphobia, racism or sexism are not tolerated here.
There are exceptions. Sometimes I will let such comments through and then ridicule you mercilessly for your antediluvian idiocy. You’ve been warned.
I will not tolerate personal abuse – although if you’re a right pain in the arse I reserve the right to tell you to “fuck off”. I do not guarantee to live by my own rules. It’s no fun having a blog if you are required to be consistent.
Being moderated or banned from this blog does not mean your right to free speech has been violated. Go and start your own blog.
I rarely ban people, but I will do so if you are offensive, harp on and on and on, do not appear to have the intellect to add to the discussion or just get me on a bad day. I’m middle-aged and caring for an aged parent. I rarely get enough sleep, and I’m often crotchety. If your whining on my blog is negatively affecting my real life, you will be banished.
In short, this is a benevolent dictatorship. You have no ‘rights’ here and I am judge, jury and executioner. Live with it. You have the rest of the internet to play on.
That said, I think I’m generally tolerant of conflicting views and criticism – these are not necessarily hanging offences, especially if you happen to be either intelligent or entertaining.
I suggest that, if you are commenting here, you should think of yourself as my dinner guest. Play nice, disagree with other guests by all means, but don’t dominate the conversation or start throwing around abuse. If you are unduly upsetting (or worse, boring) me, or others at my table, I will show you the door and you won’t be invited back. My house, my rules.