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Monday 31 January 2011

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Our plans for comment moderating

A number of people on Twitter have asked us how we plan on moderating comments that come to us through the various online channels as we're live on air. Here's what we've got in mind...

Comments that come from Twitter (with the hashtag '#rte11', g'wan, use it) will be moderated for profanity, obscenity and to ensure nobody sues our dear employers, RTÉ, for dirtying their character. The same will go for comments that are submitted directly via the CoverItLive comment box on our website (and when off-air, on the blog).

The comments that go to air will be chosen from those that made it to the website via the process above. Some of these will go to air on-screen, others will be fed to the presenter via the studio laptop and/or their ear-piece.

Mainly questions will be fed to the presenter, mainly comments will go on screen. We're planning it this way for two reasons...

Firstly, we feel if we put a question on-screen and the presenter doesn't pick it up and run it to the panel while it's still on-screen it will appear like we're ignoring the commenting audience. Also, it'd be slightly off-putting for the viewers who are not commenting or interested in commenting to see these questions.

Secondly, if we tried to get the presenter to pick up questions as they were on-screen we'd be forcing the presenter to stop the conversation, pause, read the question and then redirect the discussion in line with the question. This would make the flow of the program quite difficult to manage in studio (how do we feed the video clips to air if the question a moment or two ago was completely irrelevant? Among other basic telly-workflow questions).

Obviously, the vast majority of comments won't make it to air or to screen. Nearly all will go to the website.

Well, we hope so anyway. Use the language you'd use with your mother and we'll be as hands-off as we can with the moderation. Honest.