Vice has revealed that it is taking the bold step of removing the comments sections from its online platforms, citing a lack of time or desire to continue monitoring “crap”.
The media platform’s editor in chief, Jonathan Smith made the announcement in a post which also detailed several upcoming renovations including redesigns and additional new features.
The statement pointed out that while comments can foster a productive community discussion around a particular story or topic, they are rarely at their best and are too often “prone to anarchy”.
“Too often they devolve into racist, misogynistic maelstroms where the loudest, most offensive, and stupidest opinions get pushed to the top and the more reasoned responses drowned out in the noise,” said Vice editor in chief, Jonathan Smith.
Smith adopted a tongue-in-cheek approach throughout the statement, saying that while he welcomed readers thoughts on how the platform is “actually a right-wing mouthpiece for the CIA” or how much better it was before “we sold our dickless souls to the gods of capitalism” it has had to ban countless commenters over the years for threatening its staff and subjects.
In conclusion Smith said Vice did not have the “time or desire to continue monitoring that crap moving forward”.
He added: “Besides, there are plenty of other ways for you to publicly discuss our work and the personal worth of our staff. We'll still be reading your thoughts on Twitter and Facebook, and we legitimately do enjoy getting IRL mail (no bombs) sent to our offices in Brooklyn."
The move follows on from similar actions taken by the likes of the Telegraph which earlier this year temporarily removed its comments section during a revamp and pointed users to social media to leave comments.
USA Today removed the comments from its sports section, saying that 71% of the section’s audience was mobile and arguing that social was where people were commenting with their friends.
In addition to the changes to its website, Vice has also teamed up with the Guardian in a content partnership deal which will see the two media companies sharing investigative news and video production skills.