qnotes contributor Robbi Cohn’s Jan. 8 column, “What’s going on, North Carolina?”, along with a recent guest commentary by Charlotte-area, anti-LGBT religious leader Dr. Michael Brown, have attracted quite a few comments and thoughts from both readers and, likely, those who’ve stumbled upon our website out of interest for either column’s subject matter.

Many of these comments have either pro- or anti-LGBT viewpoints, but the overwhelming majority fail to violate our Community Discussion Terms and Conditions:

qnotes offers readers the ability to post comments on some portions of our online material. The comment threads atgoqnotes-launch2.newspackstaging.com are open to site users who agree to these terms. Views and opinions written by readers in these comment threads do not necessarily represent the thoughts, opinions or official positions of qnotes, Pride Publishing & Typesetting or any of its staff.

qnotes staff reserves the right to edit or remove any publicly posted content including, but not limited to content deemed to be overly offensive or obscene or those comments containing unsubstantiated claims against any person or group. By leaving a comment on this website and clicking the “Submit” button commenters agree to refrain from using overly offensive or obscene words or statements and agree that qnotes reserves the right to edit or remove any or all of your comment under these terms and conditions.

Upon submitting their comment, users acknowledge that from time to time qnotes editorial staff may choose to publish in its editorial pages of the print edition of the publication all or part of those comments made online.

A few of these comments, however, did violate these terms and conditions. When commenters cross the line, qnotes staff attempts to quickly moderate those comments. While we strive to offer opportunities for open debate and discussion, qnotes will only do so within the framework of our terms and conditions. Readers can rest assured that our staff will attempt to keep our site’s commenting threads civil and free from overly offensive and obscene comments, as well as those that contain unsubstantiated claims against any person or group. We won’t, however, engage in outright viewpoint discrimination. At the end of the day, we are a newspaper that values open discussion and freedom of speech. We believe that the answer to hateful speech isn’t silence or censorship, but rather more discussion and debate. We try to keep this philosophy in mind when choosing to accept guest commentaries, as well as when choosing whether to moderate a comment.

If readers or commenters ever find a comment they think violates our terms and conditions, please feel free to email us at editor@goqnotes-launch2.newspackstaging.com to alert us to the material. Further, you can share your own thoughts and opinions via our comment threads or by submitting letters to the editor (approximately 200 words or less) or guest commentaries (approximately 600-700 words or less) to editor@goqnotes-launch2.newspackstaging.com.

Matt Comer

Matt Comer previously served as editor from October 2007 through August 2015 and as a staff writer afterward in 2016.