Linda Chavez

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  • This Sept. 23, 2010 picture shows Eric Deggans, St. Petersburg Times media critic, who maintains a blog entitled "The Feed" on the newspaper's website. "When there are forums about race, people flock there to do battle," said Deggans. Whenever he blogs about race, "about 20 percent of the comments will be straight-up racist. Another 20 percent are questionable." The racial comments and other personal attacks have made Deggans feel more defensive, as if he's always under attack: "It wears you down after a while." He said, "I have to constantly coach myself to dial down the hurt and the anger, because you get three comments that are really hurtful and prejudiced, but the fourth is someone who wants to have a genuine conversation."(AP Photo/St. Petersburg Times, Boyzell Hosey)  MANDATORY CREDIT: ST. PETERSBURG TIMES, BOYZELL HOSEY

    Racist messages pose quandary for mainstream sites

    Although you rarely hear racial insults on Main Street these days, there's a place where unashamed bigotry is all too easy to find: tossed off in the comments sections of some of the Internet's most popular websites, today's virtual Main Street.

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