21 November 2014 18:58


News
Twitter RSS Newsletter Send to a friend
20

EHI comment policy and TPP

28 March 2012   Jon Hoeksma

For the past five months, EHI Primary Care has not permitted reader comments to be posted against news items concerning TPP.

This editorial policy has created confusion and led to suggestions that EHI is biased against TPP or censoring discussion.

Neither is true. We have suspended the facility to post comments against articles concerning TPP because of two written threats of legal action by TPP over individual reader comments, which the firm alleges are damaging to it.

We have vigorously rejected such claims and we have invited TPP to engage with critics and explain their position.

At no point has the news reporting of EHI or EHI Primary Care been challenged, although TPP has complained about it on several occasions.

This is a shame, because the company has been one of the most innovative vendors in the UK health IT marketplace in recent years and we feel our coverage reflects this.

The decision to suspend reader comments on articles about TPP was made reluctantly, after careful consideration, and having taken expert legal advice.

We were unwilling to have a position whereby EHI Primary Care's functions could be compromised by the disruption and distraction of legal claims, regardless of the fact that we believed that we had done nothing wrong.

We will continue to vigorously defend the right of readers to make comments on EHI and EHI Primary Care, something we consider a valuable service to the UK health IT community.

But the threat of a potentially costly and disruptive legal action made it necessary to put in place these unique measures.

However, given the concerns raised by readers we felt it necessary to provide an explanation of our editorial position. We regret not having done so earlier.

After a five month hiatus, we are now going to try once again allowing reader comments against articles relating to TPP, but will pre-moderate such posts.

This is a process that will inevitably delay comments going live. Bear with us. We will have to err on the side of caution for the reasons outlined above, and urge readers to re-read EHI’s community rules to inform all their comments.

Where posts are not published it is because these community rules have not been followed. They can be summarised as follows: don't generalise, don’t make unsubstantiated statements, don’t libel or defame individuals or companies, don’t be offensive, be nice to others.

Should a dispute with any other party arise in the future we will be open about them and inform readers of the nature of the challenge.

We look forward to the continued expert insight and wisdom of your reader comments.

Jon Hoeksma, editor, eHealth Insider.


Last updated: 28 March 2012 12:44

© 2012 EHealth Media.


Follow

Can I get clarity?

Mary Hawking 138 weeks ago

There seems to be a suggestion that all comments should be moderated - and a situation where some - or all? - comments are *not* moderated.

In this article you say that you will be moderating comments relating to TPP - and that the problem arose because you received two complaints from TPP against individual comments they considered damaging to them.

If there were only two comments in this category, could the situation be managed by warnings to the authors of the comments or moderating their comments in future?

And will the policy of moderating comments only apply to articles about or mentioning TPP or to comments on any article where the comment mentions TPP or implies TPP products regardless of the subject of the article?


Reply
1 Reply
Flag
 
Like

This comment is:

Email address:

Submit

Follow

Post

 

Mary Hawking
Expertise:
Clinician
Sector:
Public sector
Approved posts:
782
Likes:
0
My EHI score:
782
Reward badges:

Mary, please read statement above

Jon Hoeksma 138 weeks ago

Hi Mary

If you'll read the statement above a little more carefully you'll see that you've slightly mis-read it - "two written threats of legal action" is not the same as complaints about two comments.

And as you well know we regularly contact commenters to give them a steer on why comments can't be posted or might need to be re-thought. Such conversations are our preferred approach but is not currently possible in this case.

We are pre-moderating only on articles about TPP, but will be keep an eye on other comment threads.

But I would very strongly urge you Mary to re-read our community rules, http://www.ehi.co.uk/comments/commentingrules.cfm.

Follow them and you won't go far wrong.

Thanks

Jon


Reply
Flag
 
Like

This comment is:

Email address:

Submit

Follow

Post

 

Top 20
Jon Hoeksma
Expertise:
Other professional
Sector:
NGO
Approved posts:
223
Likes:
0
My EHI score:
223
Reward badges:

Thank you EHI

SarahTPP 138 weeks ago

Thankyou for re-enabling the comments. This is something TPP and our users have wanted for a while. We welcome debate from EHI journalists and their readers - and value both positive and negative feedback.

As a company we must protect ourselves from inaccurate information being posted on what is a professional and well-respected industry site. We are therefore grateful EHI has reminded readers about the community rules.

Thanks again - TPP


Reply
2 Replies
Flag
 
Like

This comment is:

Email address:

Submit

Follow

Post

 

SarahTPP
Expertise:
Other professional
Sector:
Media
Approved posts:
30
Likes:
0
My EHI score:
30
Reward badges:

Sarah, TPP

Mary Hawking 137 weeks ago

Thanks for this, Sarah

Will TPP be responding to comments in future?

Most commentators on EHI would like a response to any concerns they raise - and public responses to legitimate concerns - and explainations of why*ilegitimate* concerns are not legitimate (often because of misapprehensions) would raise the public profile of the company rather than threaten it.

(Jon, if this comment is considered not publishable, could you forward it to Sarah? *If it is published, remove this remark!*TIA)


Reply
Flag
 
Like

This comment is:

Email address:

Submit

Follow

Post

 

Mary Hawking
Expertise:
Clinician
Sector:
Public sector
Approved posts:
782
Likes:
0
My EHI score:
782
Reward badges:

Nice to be appreciated Sarah

Jon Hoeksma 138 weeks ago

Good to know EHI is so appreciated by TPP Sarah. Just to be clear though, editorially EHI reporters aim to report the news impartially and our readers provide the debate.

Exception being editorials or insight and opinion pieces.

Jon


Reply
Flag
 
Like

This comment is:

Email address:

Submit

Follow

Post

 

Top 20
Jon Hoeksma
Expertise:
Other professional
Sector:
NGO
Approved posts:
223
Likes:
0
My EHI score:
223
Reward badges:

Freedom of speech?

Dave Kelsall 138 weeks ago

I'll be very careful in what I write here as I would hate to cause offence!

This reminds me of the super injunction fiasco where a small group of very rich people thought they had the right to restrict Freedom of Speech. It would have been interesting to see what effect Giggs, Marr and Co threatening to sue Twitter over the content of tweets on the topic would have had.

Perhaps your lawyers could produce a rider along the lines of "Comments against this thread have been restricted under legal advisement" whenever anyone tries this approach again.

Alternatively, we could always re-tweet this thread :-)


Reply
2 Replies
Flag
 +1
Like

This comment is:

Email address:

Submit

Follow

Post

 

Dave Kelsall
Expertise:
IT professional
Sector:
Industry
Approved posts:
302
Likes:
0
My EHI score:
302
Reward badges:

Agreed, freedom of speech

CertaCitrus 138 weeks ago

I remember this site in the early days and if I remember rightly it was a bit of free for all. It certainly needed moderation then :)

It was also a frequent topic of conversation at work with NPfIT coming in and our jobs potentially on the line, so some topics would obviously get heated.

But it's different now.


Reply
Flag
 
Like

This comment is:

Email address:

Submit

Follow

Post

 

Top 10
CertaCitrus
Expertise:
IT professional
Sector:
Industry
Approved posts:
501
Likes:
0
My EHI score:
501
Reward badges:

Interesting points

Jon Hoeksma 138 weeks ago

Hi NHSTechie

As explained in the above clarification of our position we will not be switching off comments in the future but will on occassion pre-moderate all comments on certain articles. When we do will inform readers what is going on. But basic point about communicating with readers is one we absolutely agree with.

Media law is particularly onerous in the UK, particularly for small publishers. There's a reason why Russion Oligarchs, Footballers and celebs reach for the lawyers...

We'd absolutely love to know what Ryan Giggs' views are on finer points of NHS IT though. Can promise though that we've not been editing out his close to the knuckle posts on HL7, GP2GP, ITK and Spine compliance though.


Reply
Flag
 
Like

This comment is:

Email address:

Submit

Follow

Post

 

Top 20
Jon Hoeksma
Expertise:
Other professional
Sector:
NGO
Approved posts:
223
Likes:
0
My EHI score:
223
Reward badges:

No surprise

clivelayton 138 weeks ago

Don't ever be surprised if you get what you wish for. My last post, essentially asking for all readers' comments on all subjects to be moderated was moderated out of existence! So I'll try again. For a professional site 'social' type comment is out of place. There is a fundamental difference between moderation and censorship. The quality of the information available here will only benefit if all posts are moderated.


Reply
Flag
 
Like

This comment is:

Email address:

Submit

Follow

Post

 

clivelayton
Expertise:
Clinician
Sector:
Industry
Approved posts:
3
Likes:
0
My EHI score:
3
Reward badges:

Dare I say it . . .

clivelayton 138 weeks ago

Told you so! When you extended the reader comments and removed moderation from some of them I recall stressing that what was needed was a professional not a social approach. Looks like the chicken came home to roost.

But I'm sorry it has happened. As a supplier I would hope that if a reader posted a comment about my company our response would be to post a reasoned reply and leave it to your readers to judge. The law is a heavy-handed way of dealing with this sort of issue. Just look at the footballers and others who have attempted to use the law to suppress information that they preferred not to see the light of day.


Reply
Flag
 
Like

This comment is:

Email address:

Submit

Follow

Post

 

clivelayton
Expertise:
Clinician
Sector:
Industry
Approved posts:
3
Likes:
0
My EHI score:
3
Reward badges:

Well done

Paul Cundy 138 weeks ago

Dear Jon and Co,

We all knew as much. I get really annoyed by those who shirk behind anonymous posts or other defences which is why I allways sign my posts and never post anything i'm not prepared to defend. Keep up the good work and stand up to those bullies wherever and whatever form they take! (lets see if that gets through?)

Regards

Paul Cundy


Reply
Flag
 +1
Like

This comment is:

Email address:

Submit

Follow

Post

 

Paul Cundy
Expertise:
Clinician
Sector:
Other
Approved posts:
101
Likes:
0
My EHI score:
101
Reward badges:

Many thanks for the explaination

CertaCitrus 138 weeks ago

As already mentioned, I'd assumed this was the case. Keep up the good work.


Reply
Flag
 
Like

This comment is:

Email address:

Submit

Follow

Post

 

Top 10
CertaCitrus
Expertise:
IT professional
Sector:
Industry
Approved posts:
501
Likes:
0
My EHI score:
501
Reward badges:

Explains a lot

Steve Fuller 138 weeks ago

It makes interesting reading, and I (probably like many others) suspected that something along these lines was afoot.

It will be interesting to see how future unfolds regarding interoperability (will that bit get edited out ?)


Reply
Flag
 +3
Like

This comment is:

Email address:

Submit

Follow

Post

 

Top 20
Steve Fuller
Expertise:
IT professional
Sector:
Public sector
Approved posts:
186
Likes:
0
My EHI score:
186
Reward badges:

TPP Comments

RAF 138 weeks ago

Thank you for your honesty Jon, I hope this comment will pass the scrutiny! There is no place for libellous comments, or plain rudeness, in responses from your readers, but I would hope the EHI community was better than that, and your moderation has always been seen to work in the past, in my opinion. Please be honest with your readers, and perhaps a little earlier, in the future? :-)

[Close, Roz - just edited a bit by EHI]


Reply
Flag
 
Like

This comment is:

Email address:

Submit

Follow

Post

 

RAF
Expertise:
Consultant
Sector:
Other
Approved posts:
44
Likes:
0
My EHI score:
44
Reward badges:

Pragmatic or regretful?

Mike Oneil 138 weeks ago

"However, given the concerns raised by readers we felt it necessary to provide an explanation of our editorial position. We regret not having done so earlier."

Good to hear. Can you tell us if there are any other suppliers or organisations that you are in the same legal position with?


Reply
1 Reply
Flag
 
Like

This comment is:

Email address:

Submit

Follow

Post

 

New Poster
Mike Oneil
Expertise:
IT professional
Sector:
Public sector
Approved posts:
1
Likes:
0
My EHI score:
1
Reward badges:

Yes we can

Lyn from eHealth Insider 138 weeks ago

And no there aren't.


Reply
Flag
 
Like

This comment is:

Email address:

Submit

Follow

Post

 

Lyn from eHealth Insider
Expertise:
Other professional
Sector:
Media
Approved posts:
162
Likes:
0
My EHI score:
162
Reward badges:
 
[1] 2

EHealth Media Limited
EHealth Insider is managed and maintained by EHealth Media © 2014
Registered Office: 11 Campana Road, London SW6 4AS
Registered No. 4214439 | Vat No. 774 4008 29
About us | Advertise | Terms and conditions | Privacy policy | Cookie policy | Contact us