comment moderation

Expletives: Something you probably want to keep from showing up on your social media pages or website.

Depending upon the venue, whether it’s a social media channel or a website, comment moderation can be quite a different animal.

On social media sites, an entity like a brand or a news organization is like a tenant renting an apartment — they can make the space their own, but they are just “renting it” from that social media entity and the users.

This is why Justin said in this week’s lecture that we should take “a light touch” to comment moderation on social sites such as Facebook and I would have to say I agree. However, some moderation has to be involved as people will still see your brand’s Facebook page belonging to your brand and not really see the distinction that your brand is simply using Facebook.

A great feature of Facebook’s that I have utilized in my professional career is the ability to “hide comments.” Facebook’s swear word filter usually does a great job of not allowing those profanity-laced comments to show up, but sometimes they do. If I see a comment containing profanity, racist or sexual language, I will hide the comment. It will no longer show up on our page, but the user whose comment was hidden doesn’t know their comment is hidden.

This is the BIG distinction between Facebook and Twitter: You can’t hide Tweets if they have inappropriate language. The only way Tweets can go bye-bye is if the user who created the Tweet deletes it. All you can do is respond to the Tweet and hope that person with the question or concern “retweets” or “favorites” your Tweet.

On your business’ website, however, it’s a different story. People have to play by your rules because to use your site, they probably had to agree to your business’ terms and conditions. So if someone posts something that your entity deems to be against its terms and conditions, you can remove it.

Whether on social media or your website, however, sometimes you’re going to run into a sticky ethical wicket where you’re not quite sure how to respond — perhaps the commenter says something libelous or asks a question that you’re not sure how to answer.

Like Justin said, this is when you should move it up the chain to your manager and ask them how to handle it and I totally agree with this point as well. Some comments have an easy, clear-cut response and some do not. Two heads are better than one and it is better when that other head is your manager. This way, everyone knows what is going on and can head off potential issues before they become larger issues.