Commenting

Readers’ comments are an integral part of ft.com. They help to put our coverage in context and provide different perspectives. Sometimes we get story ideas from these discussions, as a comment can be a starting point for another FT piece.

Over time, we have found that some comments are more conducive to discussion than others. Above all, it is important that our site is inclusive, so we ask that you comment in a civil manner. The guidance below gives our view on what works well, lists what sort of comments are not allowed and outlines scenarios where we might intervene in a discussion.

We are grateful to those who take the time to contribute to the FT. We look forward to reading your comments.

Commenting FAQ

  • How do I comment on the FT.com site?
    • To comment, you need to be registered with FT.com. Registration is free and you can do so here. If you are already either a subscriber or a registered user then simply log in to FT.com. Then go to the story or blog post in question and add your response to the comment box.
  • What sort of comments work best on FT.com?
    • We welcome comments that are relevant to the subject at hand, constructive, concise and written in English. Our guidelines are below.
  • What are your guidelines for commenting on FT.com?
    • Keep your contributions concise.
      Ensure that your comments are relevant to the topic being discussed.
      Refrain from writing your responses in capital letters or bold.
      Don’t make personal attacks on others or write comments that are needlessly aggressive or rude.
      Don’t write comments that are abusive, or incite hatred.
      Write in English.
      Comments linking to non-English language sites may be removed in their entirety.
      Using offensive language may lead to your comment being removed.
      You must not pretend to be another known ft.com user. You must not impersonate any person or entity or misrepresent any connection with any person or entity.
      Comments advertising or linking to businesses or products or aimed primarily at promoting other websites may be removed in their entirety.
      Making personal or uncivil attacks against our writers may lead to your comment being removed. Criticism should be made in a constructive manner. We welcome criticism of our coverage but we may remove comments that are plainly unfounded or misrepresent our journalism.
      Comments may be removed if they repeat points already made by the same commenter, or if they appear to be part of an organised campaign.
      Please also see section 7 ‘User Generated Content’ of our terms and conditions.
  • Can I write under a pseudonym?
    • Yes. Please fill in the pseudonym box when submitting your comment. If it transpires that you have chosen the same pseudonym as someone else, an FT administrator may email you to inform you and require you to change your name.
  • Why would I want a pseudonym?
    • It allows you to have a choice of a name to display to other readers of FT.com, rather than your real name. You do not need to create a pseudonym if you do not want one. All comments made under a pseudonym can be tracked back to your FT.com account.
  • How do I change my pseudonym?
    • You can change your pseudonym at any time by clicking ‘Change your pseudonym’ on any comment box. Please note that all comments made before you changed your pseudonym will be updated to reflect the new version.
  • I want to report an abusive comment on FT.com. What should I do?
    • Hover over the comment in question and click “Flag”. This option appears towards the bottom left of the comment. Please let us know why you are flagging the comment by using the “Flag as” dropdown menu and click “OK”. The comment will then be brought to our attention.
  • Do you moderate comments on FT.com?
    • Moderators review certain comments posted on the site by users, and make their decision based on our guidelines above and our terms and conditions.
  • What changes do you make to comments?
    • We don’t edit comments. If moderated, they either left on the site, or removed.
  • What should I do if FT.com removes my comment?
    • If your comment is removed then please review our guidelines above to see what sort of comments we welcome. The FT has the right, at its sole discretion, to remove comments that contravene our guidelines and terms. Users who breach those risk being banned, at our sole discretion, from commenting on the site. The FT is under no obligation to reinstate any comments that are removed. We will not reply to enquiries about why a particular comment does not appear on the site.
  • Which articles can I comment on?
    • You are able to comment on our articles except where the facility has been closed, at our discretion, for legal or other reasons.

New commenting system (launched June 16th, 2014)

  • Comments used to look different. Why did their appearance change?
    • The FT is working on improving the experience of writing and reading comments on our articles. Further to this, as of June 16th, we started using a new system called “Livefyre”. This allows threaded conversations, recommendations, editor’s picks, and a limited amount of time for readers to edit their comments after submitting them. We’ll be releasing more new features in the coming months.
  • What are “editor’s picks”?
    • These are comments written by readers that FT editorial staff want to mark out as being especially good. For example, this could be because the comment was thought to be insightful, well-argued, or witty.
  • What’s “recommend”?
    • FT readers can “recommend” the comments of other users. While you do have to be logged in to recommend a comment, you don’t have to be someone who comments. The total number of recommendations a comment has received is displayed to the left of the “recommend” option. If you recommend a comment by accident, simply click “unrecommend”.
  • Can I edit my comment?
    • It’s possible to edit your comment within two minutes of submitting it. After that you will not be able to edit further. While we want to give commenters the opportunity for amendments, we feel that after-the-fact edits may disrupt the flow of the conversation. If you wish to clarify an earlier point, please do so by posting another comment.
  • Can I delete my comment?
    • Yes. However, please be respectful of your fellow commenters, especially if they have engaged you in a discussion. If your comment has direct replies and you delete your comment, a message will be displayed that the comment was removed. If you delete your comment, there will be no way to retrieve it.
  • Why am I asked to grant permissions for my Twitter and Facebook accounts when I want to share a comment?
    • The FT needs your permission to be able to share a comment directly to your Facebook or Twitter feed. If you would prefer not to grant these permissions, copy the permalink provided when you click “share” and go directly to Facebook or Twitter to post the link you’d like to share.