Bryan Hemming

short stories, comment, articles, humour and photography

Our right to reply without censorship

Are newspaper comments moderators abusing their anonymity to censor comments they don’t agree with?

It seems more and more British ‘upmarket’ newspapers are trying to generate controversy in order to get ‘clicks’ to their internet editions.

Recently, Julie Burchill and Suzanne Moore, both established journalists in the British media with their own particular styles, have been attacked and threatened in the comments sections of newspapers, and through Twitter, as a result of their own perceived attacks on the transexual community. Hardly frail flowers, there are many who believe they deserved it. But at least they didn’t use the cowardly luxury of hiding behind the cloak of anonymity.

I happen to believe commentators who use the internet to launch vicious attacks on others, using false names, should have their comments removed, but I do not believe newspapers should remove comments – anonymous or not – simply on the grounds they don’t agree with them.

Julie Burchill’s piece on transexuals, ironically intended to defend Suzanne Moore, is now under investigation by the police. Though withdrawn by The Observer – the original publisher – it can be viewed here.

Generally, I don’t agree with censorship on principle, though I accept it might occasionally be necessary. However, I certainly do not agree with moderators removing, or not publishing comments, just because they don’t like them, as seems to be a growing trend. Read more

Don't bottle it up, let everybody know your opinion. And please feel free to leave a link to any of your recent posts

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


This entry was posted on January 23, 2013 by in Articles and tagged , , , , , , .

Member of The Internet Defense League

Rules on comments

As the comments sections are not intended to be general forums, comments are expected to bear some relevance to the subject of the post. Nevertheless, I do allow some generous leeway in this, particularly if I judge the comment to be of special interest.

Although I'm only too happy to link to your posts, those posts should be your own work, and not the work of others, due to copyright issues.

Follow Bryan Hemming on

Blogs I check out

Follow Bryan Hemming on

These caught my eye

Follow Bryan Hemming on


  • 94,386 hits

Top Clicks

  • None


Caitlin Johnstone

Daily Writings About The End Of Illusions


To write about my memories, past and present

The Silent War

An exploration into understanding the complexities of the Chemical Age, the Synthetic Chemical Revolution, and the toxins that impact us all

Carol Grimes, The Singer's Tale & other yarns. An Archive.

Singer / Songwriter / Writer / Outsider / Poet / Photos / Collecting Life's Strange Things ...and a Book For Sale

Once. Again.

Une fois. Encore.

Politics and Insights

Public interest issues, policy, equality, human rights, social science, analysis


Hold your verve

El Coleccionista Hipnótico

hypnotist collector

More Crows than Eagles

More Coyotes than Wolves

%d bloggers like this: