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Jesus Sanchez
Daum: Online's 'nasty effect'
Daum: Online's 'nasty effect'

Finally! Scientific research backs up my perennial gripe about the soul-killing, society-destroying effects of online comments. A study published last month on the website of the Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication (which does not allow comments) shows that comments can actually sway the perceptions and opinions of otherwise objective readers. Researchers from George Mason University and the University of Wisconsin-Madison set up a fake blog with a news item on a new (and also fake) technological product called nanosilver that had several benefits and several risks. They then created two versions of the news post, one with comments that ran the gamut from supportive to skeptical but...

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