DOWNTOWN — Avoid the comments section: There's a good chance it's not going to be pleasant if you're in Chicago.
A new analysis from Wired and Disqus, an online commenting platform, looked at comments from throughout the United States. Chicago's comments aren't the worst — but they are up there compared to other big cities.
The analysis found 9.1 percent of comments made in Chicago are toxic. That's higher than the state average of 8.2 percent of comments being toxic, but not quite as bad as comments in Philadelphia (where 10.7 percent are toxic) and New York and Houston (where 9.6 percent are toxic), according to the report.
In comparison, 8.1 percent of Los Angeles' comments are toxic while 7.7 percent are toxic in Phoenix.
The worst city in the United States was Park Forest, a southwest suburb, where a whopping 34 percent of comments were dubbed "toxic." Ninety-nine percent of those toxic comments are coming from just two writers, though, according to the analysis.
Wired worked with Disqus — an online commenting platform used by many sites — on the analysis. Comments like, "You are a racist pig, a slime ball," were rated toxic while milder ones — like "grilled cheese ideas are limitless" — were ranked as not toxic or only mildly toxic.
Online trolls and negative comments have gained increased attention in recent years. One study from 2014 found there was a correlation between those who "troll" and those who show signs of sadism, psychopathy and Machiavellianism.