I just posted this in the comment section below. But it in order to make sure that it is read by as many people as possible I'm putting it up as a post.
Ben Waxman commented:
A "no moderation" policy does not work. sad, but true.
It didn't work here. Which is why I had to start moderating about a year ago. But it does seem to work on some blogs.
Those with an 'anything goes' policy - of course there is no problem.
For those who cater to specific type of person (i.e. Torah blogs that do not deal in sociological matters) it works well too.
Torah blogs that do at times deal in sociological matters that are more moderate in tone when expressing their views ala Hirhurim are also more likely to succeed with a no moderation policy.
But if there are standards, someone is going to try and violate them at some point. Hirhurim has this problem too though to a far lesser extent than I do. Their solution is to have someone specifically in charge of monitoring every comment and either quickly editing or deleting those which violate their standards.
In my case, the posts are far more controversial and more strongly worded. They attract all kinds of criticism which are often accompanied by vitriolic insults. However I am willing to leave the comments unmoderated and see if my guidelines will be followed. So far they have been.
There were a few that were borderline which I edited or deleted. Some borderline comments were left alone. But on the whole, it's been a pretty good few hours since I opened things up here.
Frankly I don't expect it to last. At some point I'll probably have to re-instate full moderation. I think it's inevitable. But for the time being I'll leave it things as they are.
Maybe those who are inclined to insult or denigrate others with whom they disagree will be motivated by the fact that doing so will result in a return to full moderation - something nobody wants including me - and be more careful in how they say things. We'll see.