As a columnist with SI.com and ESPN.com, I’ve always insisted that my contact information be placed below my columns. The reason: For some dumb reason, I considered it noble to be accesible; to have genuine feedback with readers who want to support or disagree with your take.
Sadly, I’ve decided to end this practice.
It’s just not worth it. I enjoy the banter with some, but what outweighs any positives are all the negatives. Nonstop, nonstop, nonstop negatives. You’re an ass. You’re a punk. You’re a dick. How the fuck do you get a paycheck? Most of the e-mails aren’t like that, but an increasing number are. And, honestly, I don’t think it’s me. I think it’s the angry nature of the modern sports fanâ€”easily agitated, easily upset and extraordinarily anxious to spew whenever possible.
I understand it. I get it. But the comments go so far beyond civility, it makes me sick. I’m not talking about one e-mail in particular, though I will say the one I posted here the other day might have pushed me over the edge. You hate my take on Barry Bonds … so you throw out shots about my looks? Is that where we are? Is this who we are?
Hence, I’m done. I’ll continue to banter gleefully with blog readers, but no longer will my e-mail address exist below the columns.
Jeff Pearlman is a columnist for si.com. He can’t be reached.