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Moderator
Reply with quote  #9 
German Salazar recently closed his very valuable ShooterJournal.com Forums to new posts. The archives remain up, but there are no new posts since 2/1/2008.

The reason was that it was taking him an increasing amount of time every week to police the threads and insure that his members were not getting into verbal fist fights.

If folks want to keep this Forum going, for God's sake treat other members with respect.

There seems to be a pattern that sets things off. Poster A, who assumes he is WAY smarter/more experienced, will make a snide or sarcastic remark to poster B. This leads to an escalation, with B barking back at A, and A responding with insults. Then, guess what, Poster A emails me complaining that "Help Mr. Moderator, you should ban Poster B!! He called me an over-bearing SOB". I go back to the thread and -- guess what -- it was crystal clear what set off the dispute -- the sarcastic, disparaging, or "clever" insult by Poster A.

I'm convinced now that, in some situations, Poster A is actually looking to get into an online sparing match... baiting other posters into replying.

Folks... we're all too adult for that.

Likewise, I want to say in NO UNCERTAIN TERMS that the mere fact that you THINK you have superior knowledge about a particular topic than another Forum member does NOT give you the right to belittle or insult others.

Just this week I've seen two instances where Poster A unloaded all over other members, scathing them for being inexperienced numbskulls. Well, turns out Poster A's knowledge of the situation was far from perfect too. One thread involved stock bedding. I actually took the time to call Alex Sitman and Tom Meredith, two of the most respected stockers in the country, to see whether Mr. A was correct. Guess what, both said the Mister A's advice was not very sound, and that the practice advocated by other posters (whom Mr. A called "stupid") was the better way.

Let he who is without sin cast the first stone...

I don't want to see Forum members belittling others or being "cute" by using snide or sarcastic language to make other members look foolish. I'd say that, more often than not, those posters who loudly announce they have "superior knowledge", have a lot to learn also....

Keep that in mind -- that we ALL have a lot to learn -- and be courteous.

It also helps to show some humility. Consider this, most sports historians would name John Wooden as the greatest college basketball coach of all time, by a large margin. But if you have ever talked to Coach Wooden (and I have), the first thing you notice is that he doesn't disparage other coaches, call them "fools" or "morons" or "losers". He will render advice but he will never say "this is the only way to do it".

Wooden is actually quick to preface his thoughts by saying "it's a long time since I've coached... so much has changed ... this is only one man's perspective." He doesn't say "SHUT UP you boobs and listen to me because I'm so smart."

But guess what, the man is 97 years old and people are still listening.

Tommie
Reply with quote  #10 
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Moderator
Reply with quote  #11 
I wanted to add some good news and bad news, to put things in perspective.

Good News: 99.9% of the 4,480 members of this board exhibit respect and courtesy to other posters. There really are only a few "bad apples."

Bad News: I've spent about 8-10 hours this week reviewing and policing threads, including 2 hours tonight. That's time NOT spent putting together articles that EVERYONE can read and enjoy. So... you don't have the new, comprehensive 17 Caliber Article I was planning to release Wednesday. Hopefully I can get it up tomorrow.

The effort it takes to filter "contentious" posts has a direct, negative impact on my ability to release new, important content that serves a much wider audience.
milanuk
Reply with quote  #12 
Perhaps you need to issue a bigger stick to your 'help'... and encourage them to exercise it. To some degree you'll still have to keep an eye on them to guard against excesses, but I'd like to think this site (and the forum) has grown beyond being a one-sheriff town... most forums with this much activity end up deputizing some of the more moderate members to help keep the brush fires knocked down to size so the big boys can keep their eye on the ball of running the site as a whole. Just a thought.


I'm not sure how much (if any) help German had on his site... generally I almost never saw any real infighting there. He must have kept a tight lid on it for it to be as bad as you mentioned. I didn't visit there as much as some other sites, and I generally avoid some of the more contentious subjects on most forums if I can, but I find it hard to fathom it was really that bad. Guess thats what happens when you get a bunch of strong-willed opinionated types together in one area

Monte
Moderator
Reply with quote  #13 
Monte,

Good idea.

Jason is "empowered" as a Moderator but he's been super busy with new job, getting married, moving to a new town, and working on his Smackthesmiley.com operation.

Moderating is a thankless job, but if someone is interested in helping, let me know. Perhaps the simplest thing is to have a "zero tolerance" policy so that a helper isn't constantly charged with making tough judgment calls.

If everyone knows that ANY insult or flame means INSTANT post deletion--no questions asked, no explanations given, then the "bad apples" might change their ways...
chuckw2
Reply with quote  #14 
Paul,

Delete the post, hammer the posters head real good One Time. If he does it again ban him from this site. No one has time to read that BS.



Chuck
FredBohl
Reply with quote  #15 
The intent of this forum is to provide an on-line opportunity for the friendly discussion and sharing of our collective hard won knowledge and ideas about precision shooting.

Good people often have different ideas or beliefs arising from similar experiences. Wise people learn best from calm discussion with those of differing views. Let us all try to remember to temper our strongly held opinions with respect for the strongly held opinions of others.

Paul - I'd offer to help, but at least once having been part of the problem rather than part of a solution, I'll defer others of hopefully better character
Moderator
Reply with quote  #16 
I've just spent another two hours trying to police a thread that got all bogged down. One party was offended by some disparaging comments he thought were about him, but were actually written about somebody else. This led to countering criticisms. Then a post was made criticizing a Forum member (Mr. A) for comments that were actually written by Mr. B. And then it just got worse.

What a mess. Here's the deal guys.

DON'T INSULT OTHER PEOPLE.

JUST DON'T DO IT. EVER. PERIOD.

WHEN DISCUSSING TECHNICAL TOPICS, STICK to the FACTS. We can all talk weights, dimensions, and group sizes in a calm, reasoned fashioned. When one starts talking about so and so's bad attitude or lack of skill/insight/intelligence, then the thread goes to pot in a hurry.

DON'T POST SOMETHING YOU KNOW YOU WOULDN'T SAY to the OTHER FELLOW FACE-To-FACE.

I'm going to have to resort to some draconian measures. That means rapid thread closure or deletion once things get out of hand.

It's bad enough to try to police obvious "over the top" remarks. It's nigh impossible to expect me to correct misquoted posts and people reacting to something posted on ANOTHER Forum.
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