I apologise to those like Jim King and Gary Bullivant who post on here under their real names and those anonymous posters who have posted constructively, but a sick anonymous troll has forced me to turn comment moderation back on.
Sadly some very unpleasant people think it is OK to post things online while hiding anonymously behind a computer screen which they would never dare to say to anyone's face.
People sometimes joke about this sort of thing coming from people tweeting from their mum's basement though in a well-connected community like West Cumbria where everyone knows everyone else those of us on the recieving end have a better idea where some of these posts are coming from than the perpetrators may realise. I have some strong suspicions about where some of the anonymous online poison in West Cumbria comes from and that it is from people who really ought to know better.
I adopted a strict rule a few years ago when a critical comment was made on an obituary post, which caused grief and offence to the family of the person who had died, that I do not allow negative comments on obit posts. It is common for the family and friends of people who have died to look at the internet and see what has been said about them and I was determined never to allow my blog to be used to hurt innocent people in that way again.
Most people have respected that rule, which is why I was able for the last few years to comply with a request from a regular reader and poster to turn off comment moderation.
However, today someone who presumably thinks he or she is funny put a nasty comment on an obit post. I have deleted the post but I am not putting up with the possibility that it or something else nasty might be put on instead. Sadly therefore the individual concerned has managed to put me in a position where the least worst option is to turn comment moderation back on.
The alternative would be to not allow comments on obit posts at all, but that would prevent anyone who wanted to post a tribute to the deceased from doing so.
I will try to make sure I check what has been posted on a reasonably regular basis and will generally let through comments which are not offensive, especially those which are signed, even if I do not agree with them.
This position will last for a little over three weeks.
I will review the policy on Sunday 22nd August and may turn comment moderation back off at that stage.