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The union suspended the feature in May 2004 after problems developed with site visitors posting abusive, discriminatory and libellous comments.

After an internal review, the union has implemented a new version of the comment feature that uses a rating and reporting system for comments similar to those in use on other community-building websites like Slashdot.

The site’s content management system assigns each comment a numeric rating. Anonymous comments are rated lower than comments by logged in users. Comments by site administrators get a higher rating.

By default, visitors to the site will not see most comments. Visitors can then choose to see no comments, some, more or all comments either temporarily or by creating an account and setting their account preferences.

Website editors can change the rating of any comment, or delete it altogether. The union has established a comment policy to guide site editors and to clarify our decisions to site visitors.

All visitors to the site can also report comments that violate the comment policy to the site’s administrators.

“We’re trying to balance the need to reduce “static” on the site with visitor’s expectations of interactivity and open discussion,” said CUPE National President Paul Moist. “We want people to speak openly, but with decorum and respect.”