• December 15, 2005
  • Posted by Marc

A Comment About Comments

You may have noticed that on some of the posts we’ve finally enabled comments to the site.

And while were excited about doing this, we’re also cautious and a bit concerned.  It can either make the site far better then before, or it can fuck the whole thing up.

For over a year, Sara and I have debated back and forth about adding comments. And each time we’ve decided not to. There are good reasons to add them, and there are good reasons not to. You may remember that for one day earlier this year, we did open the site up to comments.

And it was a fucking disaster. 

While we’re very eager to take on the likes of Sony, or publicists, or video game companies, we’ve made it a point to try as much as we can not to be judgemental about the art or artists that we come across and feature on this site. This site is about celebrating work on the street, not about judging it or deciding it’s value.That’s what people like about it. They like that we’re not critics. We’re fans and we see no reason to use this site - our site - to start to encourage a separation between the “star” artists and everyone else.

The Wooster site is not an online magazine. We are not trying to showcase the “best” that is out there. Rather, we use the site to share with our friends shit that we like… or stuff that makes us smile or think.

Sometimes we hear people say that a problem with the Wooster site is that some of the art on the site “is not that good.”  But what they don’t understand is that the piece may have been done by a 13 year old boy who adolizes Faile, or Bast, or Swoon, or is just starting out.

The problem in the past with comments is that people have used them to trash other artists.  Mostly out of jelousy. Thiis is a site that all artists should feel comfortable coming to to check out new work each day and to participate in a global dialogue.  Artists should not have to worry about how people perceive their work publically on this site. 

The comments should not be used to judge “value” or quality.  You can do this on sites like Stencil Revolution. Not Wooster.

So, we’ve launched comments today. But one thing we request of you….  please don’t use them to talk trash.  Don’t use them to criticize another artists.  If you don’t like a piece of work, move on and scroll down.  Keep the comments postive and constructive. Encourage and celebrate, rather than devalue and criticize.  If the comments add to the site by bringing in new voices and perspectives, we’ll keep them going.  If they are used for attacks or negativity, we’ll turn them off.

Basically what we’re saying is… Be respectful.  Share your opinions and thoughts.  But don’t use them to take anyone down.  Use them to start a dialogue shared by a fantastic community of like-minded people.  Don’t use them to judge what is “worthy” and what is not.