Introduce yourself!


Thanks for saying hi, sydette.

I don’t know that the format is what’s most critical — comments, message board, social media, debates, live events? I don’t know what the exact right mix is for Ann Arbor, or if there’s something I’ve never seen or considered. What I want, though, is a culture and a process whereby journalists take what readers have to contribute seriously and work them like sources. I want readers to feel they’re part of the team — or at least that they could be if they wanted to add something helpful, that they wouldn’t just be ignored or belittled. I recognize that 99 percent of what populates comments, message boards, chats, etc. is chaff, and that trolls and axe-grinders make it toxic. Tools that encourage readers to participate honestly, help reporters and editors winnow the wheat from the chaff and keep the biohazard level to a minimum would be greatly appreciated.

I could go on and on, but does this at all answer your question?


We have a thread here : Codes of Conduct with some resources , if you want to look at how we built ours . There is a lot of debate around codes of conduct, but I think they’re utterly necessary. How do people know how to behave quickly and unambiguously in an online space. It’s also a great exercise in analyzing your community


Hi everyone. I am a senior journalist and news anchor based in Sydney, Australia. I am passionate about storytelling and connecting people. I have worked in the industry for 20+ years. I found you guys through a contact, who saw that I was engaging in ideas about the future of journalism, and wanted to connect with others in the same space. I am really keen to chat about what works and what doesn’t, in the online space; what future audiences want or might connect to, and staying true to the core values of storytelling and journalism.


I’m Sarah Lorenzen, marketing director for Tulsa World, a BH Media Company. I’m very interested in the Coral Project and want to learn more about it. That’s why I’m here - just to learn and explore this great concept.


Hello Kumi,

We would love to chat. Don’t be afraid to drop us a line. I would lobe to know what your thoughts on future audiences are ?Are you looking t subject matter,design of the space, or some other area. What excites you most about these ideas?


Hi Sarah ,

Welcome ! We’re excited your excited. How did you find out about us? What are the things that most intrigue you about the comment space? Where the major goals for your platforms?


Hello, Coralful people! I just discovered this project and think it is an incredibly important one, and I want to help! I’m a junior front-end dev hungry to learn and contribute in any way that I can. If I don’t get a reply to this message I’ll take a best guess as to who to reach out to, but if you could point me in the right direction, that’d be great :smile:

Hope everyone is having a great start to their week and is smiling knowing that they’re working on something that matters!



Hi. I’m Melody. I think a lot about comments and users and generally just improving news. Happy to join in this discussion.


Hi !

Talk to me ! I am so excited to have you here. Reach out to me! I would love to talk to you about it. How did you find out about us Dan?


Hi Sydette! I can’t figure out how to direct-message you – how do I do that? Alternatively, feel free to get a hold of me via email – dsklos(at)gmail. Thank you for getting back to me! Excited to connect :slight_smile:


Hi Melody,

Glad to have you here . Really enjoyed your article we featured in our newsletter! I was especially interested in you front page breakdown article and was thinking about doing that with comments.


Just messaged you you should see the notification



I’m Tyler, and I used to work as the Director of Community at Newsvine, and I think internet comments have a role to play in saving the world.

I really like what The Coral Project stands far and is actually doing, and I’m here on the recommendation of my internet friend Ryan (off to look for his account now).

I love what you’ve done with the place.


Hi, folks.

I’m a retired unix systems administrator and a very old undergraduate in the journalism program at Georgia State University. I also have a hyperlocal news site in a perpetual stage of sneak-preview pre-launch. As I get closer to the completion of the degree, I’ll be increasing the speed with which I update content, depending on my time constraints, and how many competent freelancers I have available.

I’m interested in Coral, because hyperlocal sites can’t survive without reader engagement, yet I have no intention of hosting a platform for abuse. At the moment this isn’t an issue on my news site, since I really haven’t even launched, and I only get bursts of traffic periodically. But I want to have something in place other than loosely moderated Disqus before I start increasing traffic.

My preference would be pre-moderation of comments, like the NYT does, but it’s an expensive way to do it above trivial levels of traffic.

I’m very interesting is seeing how Coral progresses. I’m interested in giving my readers the maximum freedom without allowing the abuse I see on many sites.


Hello Larry,

I ams super excited you’re here. I am interested in your site ! What are some of the things or topics that concern you most about your site and the possibilities for abuse?Are there specific articles that have created the most traffic ?

What communities do you really like? Which ones do you avoid at all costs?


Hi all! Bit late to the game, but I’ve been lurking! I’m Lilah Raptopoulos, just recently took on the role of Community Manager at the Financial Times, previously worked on a lot of on-site community features and projects with the Guardian. Right now we’re building a bigger strategy and doing a bunch of experiments . Very interested in the bigger questions of what the value is of a comment, whether engaged commenters and comment readers interact with our journalism differently than non-comment readers, how to measure comment quality (how do we really know if quality has improved over time?), when private on-site forms and callouts work better than the comment stream, etc. Very happy to be here!


Hi, Sydette.

My site is River Edges. It covers the southern part of Cobb County, GA and the western edge of the City of Atlanta.

The traffic on my site has been very low, since I haven’t even been publicizing it in its limited target area. 200 hits is a high number for the first day of any of my articles. The two recent articles generating the most traffic are one I wrote on a community meeting about possible cityhood for Mableton (an unincorporated area), and an article about a shutdown of the Smyrna City Council during protests over the shooting of a young black man by police.

Police relations with the African-American community are a big issue in Cobb County, and I intend to write and publish on it extensively. That would be the sort of issue that could potentially attract racist comments and trolling, if the comments sections at other sites is any indication.

My most consistent reader interaction has actually been on facebook. There are a few community groups on facebook that are amenable to links to my articles, and the discussions there dwarf the number of people who post directly on my site. The ratio is something like 50:1.

I like the comment sections on, the New York Times, and Political Wire. All three tend to attract a more thoughtful and less noisy discourse.

There are too many to choose from among sites on which I apply the “don’t read the comments” rule.
Politico may have improved since they installed a facebook interface (people behave themselves a little better if they’re posting under their real identities), but at one point the comments there were out of control.


Welcome Tyler,

We do try! So glad to have you here. What are some things you want to see in the comment space that you haven’t seen before ?


Hi Lilah,

We are super happy to have you! I would really like to ask you one of your own questions. How do you see the value of a comment? Also what are different ways you want do see interactions that just are words in the text box?


I’m VR Urquhart. A few months ago I started working with others at to improve comments. I’m here as part of that project to learn and share ideas with others working in the same area.

From the start, I made the argument to the higher ups at Slate that the community of commenters on the site were mostly very smart, civilized superfans, and that a relatively small investment of time and attention would be able to clear out trolls, clarify the rules, and shift the balance of comments on the site from negative to positive and respectful.

I’m quite proud of the results we’ve had so far- we’re always looking to improve but I believe that Slate has one of the best news and politics comments sections on the web.