ROTHENBURGER – Shutting down City’s Facebook comments is the wrong move

(Image: Mel Rothenburger)

HERE WE GO AGAIN with Internet incivility. This time, the City of Kamloops has banned commenters from its Facebook page.

I think it’s the wrong move, but let’s look at the reasons. On Wednesday, the City posted a notice stating comments would be disabled due to “a decline in civility.”

This incivility, according to the City, “affects many things, including our staff’s mental health, job seekers’ perception of Kamloops, the spread of misinformation, and participation levels from those respectful users who are interested in understanding information about our programs and services.”

There’s truth in that statement. Words can hurt. When commenters get overzealous, they can over-reach. They forget to stick to the issues.

When you go into politics, you’d better have a thick skin, or grow one quickly. In this Internet age, it’s more necessary than ever before. You learn to roll with it.

And when you work for a public organization, you’ll need to do the same.


Mel Rothenburger is a former mayor of Kamloops and a retired newspaper editor. He is a regular contributor to CFJC Today, publishes the opinion website, and is a director on the Thompson-Nicola Regional District board. He can be reached at

About Mel Rothenburger (9641 Articles) is a forum about Kamloops and the world. It has more than one million views. Mel Rothenburger is the former Editor of The Daily News in Kamloops, B.C. (retiring in 2012), and past mayor of Kamloops (1999-2005). At he is the publisher, editor, news editor, city editor, reporter, webmaster, and just about anything else you can think of. He is grateful for the contributions of several local columnists. This blog doesn't require a subscription but gratefully accepts donations to help defray costs.

1 Comment on ROTHENBURGER – Shutting down City’s Facebook comments is the wrong move

  1. Perhaps the city should accept and respond only to comments whose authors have the courage to identify themselves. Anonymity is often cowardice…or the lack of substance,,,

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