Many people have mentioned that Mythcreants has an unusually good commenting community where constructive discussions can actually take place. That’s because Mythcreants invests time and energy in monitoring our comments section and keeping away bad actors. We want Mythcreants to be a safe space for wide-ranging discussion on speculative fiction. Often, these discussions will venture into sensitive subjects like gender, (in)equality, disability, representations, politics, and who would win in a fight, Kirk or Picard?

To ensure our comments section is a nice place to be, there are some basic guidelines we expect commenters to observe.

The Three Rules All Commenters Must Follow

Anyone who violates these guidelines may have their comments removed at the discretion of the editors. Violations may lead to restrictive filtering or a permanent ban.  (However, if you don’t see your comment right away, it doesn’t mean you were banned. See Moderation and Latency section.)

Please note that using polite phrasing doesn’t exempt you from any of these rules.

Either say something nice or contribute to the discussion.

We do not allow comments that are both negative and empty of meaningful content. This would include a comment saying nothing but “this article is terrible” as well as comment saying “I disagree with every point you made but I won’t say why because the other commenters have already said it better.”

Comments should productively discuss the content featured on the page or topics relevant to it. Comments that are unrelated, incomprehensible, off the wall, deceptive, or would not foster a constructive discussion for any other reason are not allowed.

We will delete these comments without any kind of editorial notice. If you don’t put any effort into your comment, we won’t put any effort into explaining why your comment was deleted.

Don’t express or promote bigotry.

While we’re happy to host discussions on various forms of discrimination, we are not a venue for arguing how bigotry is justified. That puts an unfair burden on marginalized people to defend themselves, and that’s not what we want on our site. For example, it’s perfectly fine to discuss whether a TV show has engaged in the Bury Your Gays trope. It is not acceptable to say that gay people shouldn’t be on television.

Promotion of bigotry includes but is not limited to:

  • Using slurs aimed at marginalized people.
  • Denying the existence of marginalized people.
  • Slut shaming, fat shaming, etc
  • Promoting stereotypes about marginalized people.
  • Spreading philosophies designed to support oppression.

Don’t make personal attacks.

Criticism should focus on the substance of what others are saying and not make statements about them as people. That includes comments on:

  • Someone’s experience (“You clearly haven’t read it”)
  • Intent (“You’re lying!”)
  • Tone (“You didn’t need to get so upset.”)

Comments insulting a post’s author or another commenter are obviously not acceptable. We do not allow name calling or using adjectives like “delusional” or “stupid.”

Patterns of Malicious Behavior

While the three rules govern how we judge comments in isolation, we also notice when commenters exhibit patterns of malicious behavior across comments. If we observe that a commenter is violating the spirit of our rules, making subtle attacks on other commenters, demeaning our team members, creating an unpleasant discussion environment in our comments section, or otherwise showing a pattern of malicious intent toward or harmful impact on the website or the people here, we will start holding that person’s comments to a higher standard than we would normally.

If your comments are often being filtered out, it’s up to you to earn back our trust by consistently sending us comments that constructively discuss topics in good faith. If we always find your comments are constructive, we will stop filtering them after a while.

Editor’s Warnings

Occasionally an editor will post in the comments section with advance warnings about specific topics or threads. In most cases, this is to clarify what we consider to be in violation of our rules or to proactively prevent discussions from becoming hostile. Please abide by these directions to avoid having your comments deleted.

Getting Our Attention

While we see all of our comments, we do not always have the time or interest in replying. In particular, we don’t usually respond to critics because we prefer to let our content speak for itself. You are welcome to pose questions in the comments, but we may not answer them. We invest lots of our time producing content, and we don’t owe anyone a response.

Calling us out by name or interrupting our conversations with other commenters will not make us more likely to engage with you. If you reply to a comment we left for someone else when you should have posted a reply to the article, podcast, etc, we may choose to move your comment so it is on the main thread where it belongs.

If you really want to hear from us, use our ask a question form (for storytelling advice) or submit our contact form. This doesn’t guarantee a reply, but a response is more likely.

Moderation and Comment Latency

We have automated spam and content filters that may cause your comment to go into moderation. If you include any links or swear words in your comment, it will need to be approved by us before it appears.

Even when comments are not sent to moderation automatically, for technical reasons comments may not instantly appear on the page once you submit them. This can look like the comment you submitted just disappeared into the ether.

We apologize for the confusion, but please be patient. If you have not violated any of our rules, your comment should appear soon. If 24 hours pass and you think your comment may have ended up in the spam folder by mistake, contact us.

Comment Deletion Requests

If you would like us to delete or modify a comment you left, you can either leave a comment with your request or submit our contact form. We do our best to support commenters who need changes to their comments, as long as it doesn’t invalidate replies that have already been left by other commenters.

Thank You to All of Our Regular Commenters

While we put a lot of work into making our comments section a nice place to be, we don’t do it alone. Thank you to everyone who regularly leaves kind and thoughtful comments on the site. You keep us going.