Home » WTOP Disables Website Comments Feature Because of “Hateful and Racist Dialogue”

WTOP Disables Website Comments Feature Because of “Hateful and Racist Dialogue”

by | Feb 3, 2017

WTOP has disabled the comments feature on its website, stated the radio and digital news operation, stating “This decision was not made lightly.

 “As stated in our comments policy, our goal with the comment boards has always been to foster a space for civil dialogue on the many issues we cover daily. WTOP values free speech and our role in protecting the First Amendment.
“However, over the past year, the discourse on our comment boards has devolved into sometimes hateful and racist dialogue, which is a direct violation of that policy and inconsistent with WTOP’s journalistic standards and principles.
“Monitoring the comment boards to ensure our policies were respected and followed began taking an increasing amount of time away from our primary mission of reporting the news.
“To the many WTOP.com readers who engaged in respectful conversation on our website—we regret that the acts of some have brought us to this point.
“WTOP remains committed to offering alternative platforms for the discussion of important public matters.
“WTOP has robust Facebook and Twitter communities, and we encourage our readers and listeners to engage with each other and members of the WTOP staff in these forums. Readers can also submit comments and questions via our online form. These submissions are read by WTOP news managers on a daily basis.
“While we understand the decision to remove comments from our website will not be welcome by all, we hope you understand and respect our reasons.”
For many years, WTOP has been at or near the top of the radio ratings in Washington, D.C., and now has a significant online presence.

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