We’re disabling anonymous comments and Facebook Connect.
99% of the anons were unpublishable. Those that were, our moderator found herself approving the same people over and over again. Facebook Connecters could get in without auditioning, with inevitable results. It’s also not fair to make some people try hard to audition while other people get a free pass because they have a sexy API. Going forward, if you want to comment on Consumerist, you must register for an account.
Whether you’re registering for the first time or a current commenter, you should also take this opportunity to add a valid email address to your profile for password recovery. When we leave Gawker’s and go on to our own platform later this year, you’ll only be able to keep your commenter name, profile, and history if you’re able to respond to a re-registration email that we will have to send out. Go to “Profile” -> “edit my profile” to add yours.
I’m sure disabling anon and Facebook Connect will piss off and thrill in equal measure, but I think in the end that raising the bar for entry will improve the quality of the conversation inside.