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Old 21-12-2010, 20:38   #46
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Originally Posted by Boracay View Post
While not claiming to be perfect my understanding is that the principles of Natural Justice underlie any disciplinary action that I take.

In particular my understanding is that there is no right to an open hearing, or to challenge your accuser.

LMAO........ You nearly had me then.....
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Old 21-12-2010, 20:46   #47
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It does create a problematic dynamic, though. The moderators should absolutely be part of the community, but I've often thought that having an alias for the mod account makes all kinds of sense, rather than just upgrading their main one. This way they can express opinions on level ground with other posters.

I mean, a forum/board/blog would be nothing without its managing editors. So we can't throw out the baby with the bathwater, even if we decided to drastically alter the group dynamics here in such a way. But I do think it's something that needs to be acknowledged and at the very least accepted as being potentially problematic.
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Old 21-12-2010, 21:02   #48
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Personally, whenever I choose to visit a privately owned site, I make a point of leaving my preconceptions of what are my "rights" at the door. If the owner chooses to administer floggings until morale improves, he (or she) can do so... it is his (or her) sandpit after all. We have the right to leave, that is all. What we want is irrelevent except where it is congruent with what the owner of this site wants.

For what it is worth, if, hypothetically, this was my site, I would moderate far less. To be honest, I sometimes get irritated by moderatory decisions. But, firstly, this is not my site, so what I would or wouldn't do is utterly irrelevant, and secondly, this remains by far the best on-line resource for cruising related info, so on balance, for me, the occasional minor irritation is far outweighed by the benefit of access to the incredible wealth of knowledge and experience that this site provides.
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Old 21-12-2010, 21:08   #49
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As a mod to three boards I think there's a clear difference between a blog and a msg board . A blog has a clear owner and is driven by that person. You very clearly contribute on that basis. A msg board is made up of seemingly uncontrolled flow of contributions on a wide variety of topics the value of a blog is it's owners opinion the value of a msg boards is us the contributors we make it what it is not the owner. Remember the owner gets advert money on the back of our contributions.

Many references are made to the idea that CF is like inviting friends to your house and therefore you don't want constant argumentative types ( or persons with an agenda)

However in reality this doesn't apply as it is the host that starts the argument.

I take the view that if a forum supports controversial topics ( the classic being gun threads) then it has to accept that there are deeply held views that will be expressed. I support amy mods right to suspend a thread that's one of the key functions. I don't agree that members in such threads should be blamed for contributing to that thread merely because they stuck to their argument. Also the behaviour is inconsistent as many threads are argumentative ( for example the bluewater v production) but they don't get closed down and members warned off.

This thread isn't about my issues quite correct I was merely illustrating my point by using a real example in order to show my bone fides.

CF has undoubtably lots going for it , I just hope it's not trying to be too goody-goody.

That's it from me on the subject

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Old 22-12-2010, 01:34   #50
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There is a line moderators must choose which will balance the forums need to allow posters opinions, humour, and knowledge to be shared while still ensuring enough decorum and respect is present to allow advertisers to be comfortable supporting the site as well as represent the values the forum's management wishes to be in play here. It would have to be a true and blessed miracle if the boundary drawn by these good folks over lay that of any of us in the membership. It just aint very likely folks.

Everyone of us is going to wish for more freedom of expression or more politeness. It may even change depending on the topic discussed or the moderators on at that time, or how many hours it's been since the poster had a proper, successful, and uplifting visit to the head. No two of us will agree where free expression must be curtailed to balance the requirements of advertisers and folks who see different requirements for a mannerly expression of ideas. The mods/mngmt cannot please everyone, and in fact can really please no one, almost by definition! That should be obvious to all of us, and if we can't accept the balance they are striking, we should move on. Otherwise, we will accept the culture here as they wish it to be, and thank them for doing this for us. Moderator pay still sucks, IIRC.

If you visit your local chandler and don't like their hours, find another. The guy has to balance his business with his family life, his employees needs, etc. etc. We can't dictate the terms of the services we are offered; if we do we need a slap upside the head.

Accept that life is about balance and nobody in this life will desire the exact balance you want.

Mods, job well done! Thanks for the thankless work you do, and know it is appreciated. Oh, and to the big cheeses, thanks for the site. Your membership growth rates should give you all the satisfaction you need!

cheers!
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Old 22-12-2010, 04:29   #51
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Seems some people have problems getting moderated. I wonder what this really means? I doubt at the core it is about the site moderators.

If you are having a public fight then it is you, not the site or moderators.
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Old 22-12-2010, 08:38   #52
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Moderators - 1 or 2 profiles:

If a moderator has a separate profile for posting, you could easily have a situation where the offended person was a moderator, then with a different profile, they discipline you.

Personally, I like the transparency of the single profile approach.

Forum atmosphere:

I see by various evidence that the board is successful. I see very little to dislike. I see lots to like. I am here because the dislike/like ratio is acceptable to me. I feel totally free to voice my opinions about things I think should be changed. But based on the success of the board, I have a very hard time telling Andy he is wrong about how he runs his forum.

-dan
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Old 22-12-2010, 09:06   #53
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Originally Posted by Don Lucas View Post
Seems some people have problems getting moderated. I wonder what this really means? I doubt at the core it is about the site moderators.

If you are having a public fight then it is you, not the site or moderators.
But it would be nice to know what you've done wrong.... with my 'Paki' jokes it was made clear by the 'Mod' dealing with it... (have not seen him on lately... must be on the water).
However in rebukes since then they/you have given me no clue as to where I over stepped the 'line'...
Even a 'this post' , as in the Thank You notification would save me checking back through all I've posted trying to find my 'alleged crime...'
I have no qualms whatsoever in posting a thread apology if I've stepped beyond the pale and unwittingly caused offense in away that seems aggressive...... but using the 'Bigger Stick so I can' argument as justification for judgements is casting a shadow over an otherwise excellent forum...
It must be.. its the only one I've stayed on for more than a couple of weeks... and that includes things like Facebook... and no...
I left... I was not pushed

I am aware that you would rather this post be private... and also that its not a Democracy.. being a privately owned Forum..
But surely reasoned debate over something that directly involves our 'Ethereal Existence' here is no bad thing.. its not a change of Rule... merely a broadening of the application and technique... and educational to Members who are culturally challenged regarding other countries/languages...
Phil
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Old 22-12-2010, 09:35   #54
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We will not be switching to private "Moderator" accounts. If perceives issues where a mod is taking advantage of their position, please report it to me.

Boatman, point noted and we will make an effort to link to examples if needed. Please PM me if you need some examples from recent posts (which you cannot find because they were deleted).

Please keep in mind this thread is not about how we moderate but was posted to encourage members to report posts which are not inline with our goal of creating a respectful place for cruisers to chat. When it comes to defining what is respectful everyone's opinion varies and we have to set our standard so people with a lower tolerance for borderline stuff are not offended. So while some think heated debates should be allowed because they enjoy them and don't mean any disrespect others find some of the verbal mud slinging to be beyond what is acceptable and we have to strike a balance. We do a pretty good job and don't intend to change much. Basically the pendulum swings a bit too far to one side we adjust so we can stay on course. The original post was intended to ask everyone to help create a fun and respectful place to post without belittling or making any other members feel inferior for whatever reason. All are welcome except those who cannot abide by our Community Rules.
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Old 22-12-2010, 10:30   #55
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Hi Andy..
Thanks for taking the suggestion into possible consideration... as to previous reprimands... whats past is past and cannot be changed...
My apologies to those who found me agressive and/or offensive... I claim 'Brit/Paki' humour.. but as they say.. Ignorance is no Defence..
I'm more interested in the future and hopefully a better spread of knowledge and uderstanding about each others ways and cultures.. not solely dedicated to cold clinical analysis of equipment and boats... but intertwined..
Our lifestyles as cruisers/sailors/travelers are too 'Open to the World' and non-vayagers/cruisers would maybe get a better understanding that can only help on the upward path....
Meyerem took some stick for standing his ground but... but he stated facts/opinions from the perspective of many.. including me... he got razzed but I'll bet a lot of un-informed people are much wiser today.
As you may have noticed (2500 posts in 1yr)... I use this primarily as a Chatroom as such.. I've learnt a lot and maybe helped someone a little...
But mainly its to meet and hopefully make new friends that may cross/share my anchorage one day... and have fun and hopefully a shared good laugh
Salutations
Phil
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Old 22-12-2010, 11:54   #56
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Quote:
In particular my understanding is that there is no right to an open hearing, or to challenge your accuser.
Correct that it isn't an open hearing. It is incorrect that you can't challenge the decison. You can send messages to any of the staff you like and in practice they always are discussed if any action is to be taken against member privileges. Given the very worst thing we can do to you is suspend your membership. We can't fine you or take your personal property.

The three strikes when preceded by an official warning always are sent in a private email and say clearly that it is a warning or a strike. All other requests from the moderation team are just "requests". We ask you one on one first even if we think you were wrong. There may be something going on we are not aware of and it is a chance to explain how you feel. It's not a form letter automatically genrated. A real person writes it and we may discuss it as a group before you get it. Even strikes expire over time and even after 3 strikes we may decide not to totally revoke your membership.

There can be exceptions such as spamming. Instant member revocation in all spam cases and one moderator can do it without discussion. We do make note when it happens (several every day).

Quote:
I take the view that if a forum supports controversial topics ( the classic being gun threads) then it has to accept that there are deeply held views that will be expressed.
We know the topics that generate controversy quite well. Except for topics that promote violence and criminal activity we don't explicitly refuse topics. We do feel we are a cruising / boating forum and that at some point topics can be "off topic" and become inappropriate. We reserve the right to say when it is off topic. We have no desire to be a social networking site like Facebook even though members do socialize here. 99.9% of threads here are just member to member sharing. The goal is to make more of that. where there is no sharing then it often is someone else s agenda for online communication that could easily be allowed on another forum. We think it would be OK to do it there instead.

When a controversial topic turns into an argument about personal opinions and not within the general guidelines of proper behavior or drift grossly off topic we tend to close the thread. We used to delete them.

We set the rules and we post a link to them on the banner. You must acknoleged the rules when you sign up even if you don't read them. Within the framework of the rules members are able to interact on an even playing field. Members don't get to dominate over other members.
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Old 22-12-2010, 12:21   #57
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If an unsavoury post was left there so all could see who posted it, but all that remained of the content was the words "deleted by moderator", would not that leave the thread in good shape and be a fairly public "slap on the wrist" for the poster? I'm all for the moderators enforcing the rules and when they have to make a judgement call, just hit the delete button please! (not my posts of course)
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Old 22-12-2010, 13:52   #58
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It's important to remember here that moderators are VOLUNTEERS. Regular members of the community who donate their time to keep things humming along. It is a substantial time commitment.

Interestingly only a tiny number of members are ever on the receiving end of a moderator PM or action. Often just a small handful of members are responsible for the bulk of mod interventions.

Mods make decisions as a group, both those that impact members directly (like a thread closure) and other decisions that change or improve the board (like addition of a new forum section or feature). As regular participants they are best equipped to understand the needs of members. I really appreciate the work mods do and the the dedication and time spent on behalf of the community.
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Old 22-12-2010, 16:15   #59
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Quote:
If an unsavoury post was left there so all could see who posted it, but all that remained of the content was the words "deleted by moderator", would not that leave the thread in good shape and be a fairly public "slap on the wrist" for the poster?
That would make it a "public" slap on the wrist. We don't slap members in public. We take them out back in private. We may have stern warnings or strong requests in a private email but we don't chastise people in public. We can't accuse a member of behaving poorly in public then do it ourselves. We do it in private and it stays that way - always.

Leaving a lot of dead messages in view or branded with some officially sanctioned designation would be a public slap on the wrist. We are not going in that direction nor has it ever been considered.

When a thread may contain inappropriate material it can be deleted when we choose. We don't do it often except for copyright violations or blatant spam that are done ASAP. Offensive language is often edited out. It is important to note that nearly all deleted posts are what we call "soft deleted". That means not visible to the public. It has happened that after review the post magically comes back (it's not magic or often). It means the action to delete can be reviewed and reversed by a full group of the team. Review of deletions is common in the complex cases. Threads closed can be reopened. We can make a mistake and later fix it. When it spans global time zones and a few days it's pretty hard. I'm sitting in Virginia and it's tomorrow in New Zealand and they have summer. Putting a time line together is hard. The moderators are in a finite time zone yet the forum moves all the time. Really terrible things can happen when we are short staffed.

Leaving everything as it was in a thread gone bad does infer the guilt or blame of some members that we never accused. New readers might jump to conclusions about why it went wrong and surmise they know why. It's not fair to subject the members involved to that level of public scrutiny. So yes, sometimes the moderators have to take a hit because we removed some material. When threads go bad it means the discussion is becoming unproductive and reflects badly on the members involved and the image of CF as a place to come to for help. Your image becomes our image. You can say we are stacking the deck and I might agree. We clean up the embarrassments of some members in favor of keeping the place neat and tidy. Sweeping some things under the rug helps some members more. It depends on if it helps you. It almost always helps someone.

We end it and send everyone some place else. It works! It's easier! If we call a final game over we are excused from lining up suspects, rehashing old battles, getting confessions, and apologies taking a week. We are not forced to haul someone out back to blame. Sometimes a peaceful ending is all there needs to be. We sweep up and we all come back the next day.
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Old 22-12-2010, 18:10   #60
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news flash....

CF is not a perfect place!!!

But all in all, the moderation is done with moderation.

Carry on gentlemen
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