Hanford Sentinel, a local newspaper of Hanford, California, is likely going to attract many more people to its Facebook page this week than what it usually sees.The
With a respectable 5,315 likes, you'd figure the newspaper's Facebook page would generally be pretty quiet. But a bold statement from the executive editor, Jackie Kaczmarek, raises some important questions about what people should and shouldn't be allowed to do on a Facebook page.
Kaczmarek posted this text on the Hanford Sentinel's Facebook page on Tuesday:
"This is Jackie Kaczmarek, executive editor of The Sentinel, as well as Facebook/Twitter/HanfordSentinel.com admin... and occasional dishwasher and coffee maker. I am posting to those of you who feel the need to slam us on our own page. Yes, you will be deleted. If someone posted a derogatory comment on your personal, or business, page, wouldn't you? Would you call that "censorship?" Just because we're a news media outlet, doesn't mean we can be insulted on our own page. The best way to communicate with us is via email, or post a request on this page. I can be reached at editor@HanfordSentinel.com if you have questions or concerns. We provide a Facebook page to share stories, content and converse with you, our readers and online users."
The post was highlighted by JimRomenesko.com, and later critiqued by PR Daily. The latter points out that it's pretty irrational for any newspaper editor, or business of any kind, to take to heart the sometimes absurd comments. It recommends that those who aren't interested in taking the negative feedback along with the positive shouldn't enter into public discourse online.
Yet despite PR Daily's stance, there are certainly plenty of people who agree with Kaczmarek's request for people to not be overly critical on their Facebook page. After two days online, the Facebook post has received 179 likes and numerous comments supporting Kaczmarek's statement (although, unsurprisingly, there's a fair share of dissenters in the comments, too).
Since the visitors to the Hartford Sentinel page seem pretty split on Kaczmarek's statement, we thought we'd ask you: is Kaczmarek right to call out those criticizing the newspaper on the Facebook page? Or should people be allowed to air their feelings — positive or negative — in that space? Leave us a comment with your thoughts.