The Latest Absurd Online Media Idea From Newspapers: Pay To Comment

Last week, Massachusetts’s Sun Chronicle newspaper launched a feature designed to minimize derogatory comments on the web site and make the paper a few bucks on the side.

Readers can write whatever they like, for a price.

If you want to comment on the site, you have to give the paper your real name, address, and credit card, and pay a one-time 99 cent bloviating fee.

Will this new self-moderation system work?

It will probably limit the number of drive-by arseholes who comment on the site. It will also, however, probably limit the number of folks who bother to comment at all.

So far, CNN.com says, 22 people have signed up.

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