This move is in response to ours and others’ concerns that while FriendFeed’s real-time commenting component is great for conversation, it also can fuel the mob mentality, and quickly get out of control. Previously, you could only go through and delete individual comments, which in huge threads was simply not workable.
With this change, we’re more than happy to reinstate our official TechCrunch FriendFeed account that we pulled several weeks ago, following an incident. Michael talked with FriendFeed co-founder Bret Taylor and Robert Scoble about the situation at our CrunchUp event on Friday (video below). There, Taylor also revealed that FriendFeed was thinking about other solutions, such as making it so only contacts of yours can leave comments.
Says Taylor about this feature, “You can use the feature to stop conversations that are getting out of hand, or to post entries for which you don’t want any discussion. Likes will continue to be allowed when comments are disabled.”
FriendFeed’s Kevin Fox is not as pleased (with our headline at least): “Seriously, dude. Arrington insists that a feature is essential and *must* be put in, and when we do TechCrunch writes a headline likening it to tear-gassing people? *sigh*.”