At the L.A. Times' Top of the Ticket blog, many of the reader comments posted about former Bush spokesman Tony Snow's death have been tasteless — to say the least. That has caused hard feelings to be posted in return — mostly by conservative fans of Snow — and another new "liberal bias" controversy to break out at Patterico's Pontifications. Patterico points out that the Times did not post the comments until they passed the scrutiny of a Times moderator. He thinks the worst of the remarks should have failed the test. A Times person, posting anonymous notes on some of the comments, explains that the paper's policy is limited to blocking "comments with foul language and anatomical references." The LAT's terms of service, however, say that "user content" should not be posted on LATimes.com that:
* contains vulgar, profane, abusive, racist or hateful language or expressions, epithets or slurs, text, photographs or illustrations in poor taste, inflammatory attacks of a personal, racial or religious nature.
* is defamatory, threatening, disparaging, grossly inflammatory, false, misleading, fraudulent, inaccurate, unfair, contains gross exaggeration or unsubstantiated claims, violates the privacy rights of any third party, is unreasonably harmful or offensive to any individual or community.
* "flames" any individual or entity (e.g., sends repeated messages related to another user and/or makes derogatory or offensive comments about another individual), or repeats prior posting of the same message under multiple threads or subjects.
Here's the Top of the Ticket thread and Patterico's latest post on the subject. The comments continue at the Times' online obituary for Snow, where one of the readers writes in: "This is a horrible editorial decision to allow comments on an obituary. Were you totally clueless about what loonwaffles would show up to spew filth?" I just love the new noun.