"HALT! WHO GOES THERE?"
This has happened to me a few times and it's been frustrating. But today it pushed me over the edge.
I'm talking about the comment filtering systems used by some of the blogging platforms, to protect bloggers from spam and "questionable" language in the comments on their blogs.
A number of times in recent weeks, I've typed in comments having nothing to do with salacious matters, only to have a robotic content filter say "the comment has been rejected for questionable content".
Today it happened commenting on this post by VC Brad Feld, titled "War of the Worlds Just Sucked". He lamented that it was a waste of two hours of his life, a feeling I rather empathized with, having seen the movie myself recently.
So I typed in the following comment:
"I couldn't agree more...it was such a bad execution of a classically great story, strained, safe ending and all. For my money, some of the better scifi these days can be found on the SciFi network, with shows like Stargate Atlantis and Battlestar Galactica. But given enough time, those will probably degrade to the lowest common denominator as well."
Not a great, profound comment, full of social significance, nuance, and wit...but no worse than any of the comments submitted to date in response to the post, in my humble opinion.
Well, you know what happens next...I get the "questionable content" paragraph upon hitting the submit button.
So I look over the text...think maybe it was the word "degrade" it didn't like, or maybe it just couldn't take my pessimism towards mainstream media (MSM), so I took out that whole sentence...
resubmitted...no go...not gonna get through here...
OK...so maybe it's the scifi network thing it doesn't like...maybe it doesn't like cable...so, took that out...leaving just the first sentence...tried again...
Nope, it didn't like it...
Finally, fed up, anxious to get on with the rest of my life, I erased everything, and just typed in the word:
submitted the comment...and the system this time responded:
"Thank you for your comment"
I know it's necessary, but at the same time, I wonder how many comments get neutered this way by these filtering systems...when exactly is the cure worse than the comment spam?