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Changes to user comments on CBCNews.CA

Changes to user comments on CBCNews.CA

In response to your feedback, we have made changes to make commenting on our news stories a better experience.

1. Approving and recommending comments

It can be a challenge to provide an open space for Canadians to debate and share their opinions on the news, and maintain that space as one where people feel safe and comfortable. As a result of your feedback, we have tightened up our submission guidelines. More borderline comments are now not published.

As always, if you see a comment that you feel contravenes our guidelines, click on the “report abuse” link below the comment. Our moderators will give the flagged comment a second review. We have recently added a link to our submissions policy beside the “report abuse” link.

If you simply disagree with the viewpoint expressed, you can now give it a “thumbs down.” We have reworked the existing “recommend a comment” functionality in response to user requests for the ability to “un-recommend” a comment.

2. When guidelines aren’t followed

We have always banned the most problematic users who fail to follow our guidelines, but we have also started to use a temporary suspension, or “time out.” For users that fail to follow the guidelines, we block their input to the site for 3 business days by rendering it invisible to other users. We'll still see any new posts, and can decide to lift the suspension after the “time out” period, or to ban the user.

3. When comments are disabled on news articles

Lastly, we do want to acknowledge that not all types of articles will include comments.

When we do an article on a death of an individual, we have seen comments submitted that are needlessly hurtful to the family of the deceased. To respect their loss, we disable commenting on these articles. We also disable commenting on court proceedings that involve a publication ban, and articles related to abductions, as we don't want to inadvertently publish any input that would be helpful for the abductors.

The CBC.ca moderators are working on more improvements to our commenting section that we hope to launch over the coming year. For more details, see Your Best Stuff.