Internet comment sections are typically seen as a bastion of free speech, but have they outlived their importance? When do abusive and lazy comments override anonymous expression? "Newspapers find themselves in a strange position. People wanting to have a letter to the editor printed in the paper have long been required to provide their name, address, and a daytime phone number. Yet on the websites owned by these same newspapers, all it usually takes to be handed a perpetual soapbox is an active e-mail address.
After years of letting anonymity rule online, many media heavyweights, from The Washington Post to The Huffington Post, have begun to modify their policies."