I believe The News and Sentinel has made a good decision in removing the comments options for online readers. As online manager Art Smith pointed out in his blog, some commenters were using the forum as a means of bullying and harassing, and some even used it to make fun of people who were featured in the stories.
The overuse of our digital devices has created monsters of us as a society. We feel the "power of the pen" much more as it becomes easier and easier to post something online - and readily available pseudonyms make it even easier to say what we most likely would not if our identities were known.
Good for The News and Sentinel taking that power away from these abusers. Unfortunately, I would imagine they will find another outlet for their cruelty, ignorance and bullying.