Are the same people calling over and over?

Letters

Posted: Friday, February 09, 2001

The other night there were five Word of Mouth comments taking Reinwand, Day and Metcalfe to task for their signed comments about WOM. One of the big problems with WOM is how do we know that all five comments were not made by the same person? How do we know that possibly three or four individuals don't account for 90 percent of the comments on any given subject making it sound like a substantial percentage of the population has the same opinion? Because the Empire's caller ID shows that the calls came from different numbers really means nothing. Haven't you ever wondered if you are only hearing from the same people over and over in WOM?

For those who feel finding a "gem" amongst "the loud mouth junk" justifies the unsubstantiated "junk" they should give their name so they will be in a position to receive some of that unsubstantiated "junk" and then they can tell everyone how much the "gem" is worth.

Those defending unaccountability in effect want to be able to take shots at those who sign their name. Doesn't the Empire think those responsible people who sign their name will stop participating and all you will be left with is WOM callers. I know this is happening. Who needs the grief? Are you willing to penalize those with the courage to sign so those who don't can participate? Is this what our founders who had the courage to sign the Constitution expected from the free press?

I do agree that it is a pain to sit down and write a letter every time you want to comment so here is my idea to keep Word of Mouth and have accountability. Just call from your home phone and leave your name at the end of the phone call of publication. If the Empire's caller ID shows that the name give and the phone ID match, your comment will be published along with your name. If not it won't. This will prevent someone from giving someone else's name. This would allow all to participate in discussions with a minimum of preparation and hassle as well as provide accountability.

Tim Whiting

Juneau



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