> As of Feb. 1, we are removing comments from most of Inquirer.com. Comments will still be available on Sports stories and our Inquirer Live events, and there will be other ways for people to engage with our journalism and our journalists, including our letters section, social media channels and other features that our readers have become accustomed to, as well as new capabilities that we’re developing.
> Commenting on Inquirer.com was long ago hijacked by a small group of trolls who traffic in racism, misogyny, and homophobia. This group comprises a tiny fraction of the Inquirer.com audience. But its impact is disproportionate and enduring.
> It’s not just Inquirer staff who are disaffected by the comments on many stories. We routinely hear from members of our community that the comments are alienating and detract from the journalism we publish.
> Only about 2 percent of Inquirer.com visitors read comments, and an even smaller percentage post them. Most of our readers will not miss the comments.
> For more than a decade, we’ve tried to improve the commenting climate on our sites. The goal has been to create a forum for a civil, open exchange of ideas where readers could offer relevant feedback and criticism of our work.
> Over the years, we’ve invested in several methods to try and accomplish this. None of it has worked. The comments at the bottom of far too many Inquirer.com stories are toxic, and this has accelerated due to the mounting extremism and election denialism polluting the national discourse. You deserve better than that.