We've changed the way you can comment on our stories at northwestohio.com in a way that we believe will foster a more civil and pleasant online discussion than what you may have seen in the past.
In fact, we know that many of you have avoided commenting on our stories " not because you had nothing to say " because you were turned off by some of the off-topic and frankly vile comments left by anonymous users.
We heard you. We listened. And now we TMre launching a change we believe will create a more positive online community connected with our website.
From today forward, to leave a comment on our website, you will need to log in with an active Facebook account. No longer will commenting be anonymous.
This is an industry-wide trend, and there TMs good reason for it. Commenting tends to be more civil and on-topic when users are leaving comments through their Facebook profiles. "Trolls" who like to make irrelevant comments, post SPAM and even make derogatory, racist or hateful comments will largely go away because to leave such a comment, their real name and face goes along with the comment. Facebook does a great job of identifying fake users and automatically blocks their comments from public view.
What if you don TMt have a Facebook account? Maybe you TMre worried about your personal privacy? We understand that this change may inconvenience a few of you, which is why we TMve created some additional resources to help you create a Facebook account you can feel comfortable with and use to comment on our site.
If you're dead-set against creating a Facebook page, that is entirely up to you and we fully respect your decision. We hope you continue to enjoy using northwestohio.com for all of the features, functionality and content you find useful, but regretfully, we will no longer be able to allow you to comment.
Having a Facebook account helps you be more engaged with our website not only with news, weather and sports but also with community events, contests and sharing content such as photos and video.
We hope you will embrace this change as a great move forward. We are!