Thursday, 8 March 2012

Fulham Chronicle & Anonymous comments

Journalists at the Fulham Chronicle seem to be behind some of the anonymous comments on this blog. Click on the image above for a full view.

A short while ago, and following a particularly abusive episode from a journalist called Adam Courtney, I was advised by several of you privately to invest in a system which monitors what are called IP Addresses - IP stands for Internet Protocol and is basically an electronic signature that identifies computers. It's all a bit big brother-ish really and in my view goes against the spirit of the internet, blogging and free comment.

But then so does anonymously posting on websites, pretending to be other people and generally being obnoxious. So I took the advice and it reveals that one Chronicle journalist seems to pay particularly close attention to the comments section of this blog. 62 visits today just from his computer to visit the comments section of an article I posted about last nights People's Question Time. Which he didn't attend.

But it gets worse - I also now have the ability to look at some of the other really nasty comments that have been put on here in the past too - and there have been some particularly vile ones -  and work out which IP address they come from. Any that came from Trinity Mirror Group IP addresses will be published and I will be writing to the editor of the Chronicle to seek his views about why he thinks its OK for his journalists do this.

Or would they like to explain themselves on here first? We shall see.

In the meantime please do continue to post your views - I am not remotely interested in people's IP address unless they start to get abusive, and that very rarely happens, thankfully.


  1. I think this is brilliant. Good on you.

  2. I reported Adam to Trinity Mirror for his behaviour on Twitter, and was assured that the matter would be sorted. I forgot that journalists aren't trustworthy, right from reporter to Editor...

    Seriously, though - he behaves like someone writing for a student paper. It's pathetic.

  3. Sorry Chris, but I do think this is all a bit Big Brother of you. Also, anonymous posting on blogs and websites is perfectly understandable. Many of us don't want our names forever appearing on Google associated with some long out of date blog posting. Often this is for justifiable professional reasons.

    1. Yes, I agree... I am personally wary of ever commenting under my full name for work reasons. Not least because I really shouldn't spend my time at work looking at blogs! Like most people on the internet, I choose to be anonymous, but not for nefarious purposes.

      I now feel less confident about having a proper debate on this blog, which is a pity.

  4. Chris, there must be thousands of computers linked to that IP. It could be the cleaner checking for a response to a post he made all you know. And it's hardly going stop someone leaving abusive comments. They can do it from a phone or an internet cafe.

    This is all a bit paranoid - I am worried about you!

    1. Its all a little Ironic. The obbsession with another news hound and leaving comments is only making the blog more widely read and more commented on. A self perpetuating situation.

      I have also noticed that the H&F Chronical site only allows comments on registration. Hence they have none no comments. I don't know their reason for this it, could be that they are scared of criticism and think that others will do like them. Maybe they want to have sole control of their message. Or maybe simply they just can't be arsed to moderate. What ever the reasons it discourages open discussion and means they fail to nurture a relationship with locals. This in turn means they fail to receive tipp offs from locals on possible scoops. It is again very self perpetuating cycle.

      In all business and things of a competitive nature it is better to look at what you are doing and how you can improve yourself. Not just in doing the other one in. I am sure most readers don't take much notice of what you both say about each other, as they generally seems to have their own opinions. Infact I think all that this has achieved is make many locals dismissive about both parties and their opinions.

    2. probably true - I won't be doing this forever and it's just a side thing for me rather than my career - but I wonder at the wisdom of those for whom it's their job to be doing stuff like this.