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Question to the members

Schweddy

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There have been discussions among the mod team for an idea to help keep the quality discussions top notch. Sometimes we get get a new member that comes in and disrupts discussion. We want to guarantee freedom of speech and we also would like to maintain a higher standard than other boards.

An idea that has been represented is a "newb" area. Folks with less than 10 or 15 posts hang out in there, tell us about themselves, and a team would welcome them. This team would show the newest members how to utilize the forums, and become representatives of the quality that we not only request but admire in unbiased political discourse. After 10-15 posts, the newest members are allowed into the main forums and free to post as normal.

What are your thoughts?

We are searching for more ideas.

Thanks for your input and feedback.
 

Billo_Really

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I am against censorship in any form with the possible exception of a parent to their child. However, I don't see the harm in a little pre-forum indoctrination. After all, how long does it take to make 15 posts? In the interests of keeping a certain level of quality and integrity, put me in favor of this idea.
 

Schweddy

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Exactly.

IMO, the idea has potential, but not sure at what level or if we are even there yet.
I like the idea of being proactive, rather than reactive.
 

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Originally posted by galenrox:
I think there's merit to this idea, since most of the time people get here, completely convinced that they know more anyone else, and that they won't budge, and that saying whatever extremist thing that they personally believe will just blow us away, like "Damn, I never thought about THAT!", and most of the time there's someone to school them, but then again there've been those who've come and just immidiately said really interesting things, and just dove into the frey.
It reminds me of those bumper-stickers that said, "I wish I had all of life's problems when I was a teenager and knew everything!"
 

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It's a reasonable idea. Trolls have a habit of showing their true colors very early on. Serious debaters will bide their time.
 

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Having waded through a couple of discussions recently, one being gay marriage and the other on antizionism, I would say that the most disruptive influences are not necessarily newbies. I think if you relegate new people to a second class forum, you might find that the very people you want to attract will be turned off by the notion.

If you wish to keep the discussion at a certain level, my advice is to do that which you are trying to avoid -- namely, to moderate. Nobody wants to be the bad guy (or maybe some do, but not the six of you), but unless you establish the limits, yourself, I think you are going to fail to achieve that high level of discourse you are seeking. Unless you folks step in and say "no", I think you are just going to see the lowest common denominator prevailing. Some people like pushing the envelope. Some are simply immature, but for whatever reason if people do not regulate their own speech it's really up to you to to step in and tell them when they have crossed the line. I think you will find that there is a relationship between the level of moderation and the quallity of the discussions, and from where I sit, I'd say you folks are very, very lenient in what you allow.
 

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I have to respond from a practical point of view.

IMHO, its a good idea, and also a bad idea at the same time. In theory, it sounds great, but this would also have the effect of hurting efforts to grow the board. When new members arrive, their first impression is what makes their decision on whether to stay or not. Limiting them to a newbie forum, when they are looking to speak their mind right away, will cause a number of newbies, both good and bad, to go elsewhere.

The best thing you can do is to moderate these boards the way you have been moderating them. If someone disrupts or tries to derail a discussion, then give him or her a warning. If he keeps it up, then give him a suspension. If he still doesnt learn, then ban him.

The reason I am here is because I like the zero tolerance you have on trolls, and because of this policy, I see a lot of growth ahead for you, as people come from trollpits they no longer wish to be members of. However, if you want growth, you should not present any obstacles to growth.

Once again, this idea would be an obstacle, which is not only unecessary, but would hinder growth. No need to complicate things. Just keep doing what you have been doing, and the rest will take care of itself.
 

Missouri Mule

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I'm reminded of Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart's observation that while he couldn't define pornography he knew it when he saw it. I moderated over at another site for a period of time and am a part time moderator at another site. It's obvious enough when someone is there to insult and take up other people's time with nonsense. I've always had the view that they need to be banned immediately. To others who step over the line, I think some time in a public "penalty box" would be a good idea.

We had one guy who was so disruptive that it was necessary to ban his internet address from even entering the site. He tried to do an end around but we finally got rid of him permanently.
 

Schweddy

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Missouri Mule said:
We had one guy who was so disruptive that it was necessary to ban his internet address from even entering the site. He tried to do an end around but we finally got rid of him permanently.
We actually have the same type of person now. We attempt to ban immediately when we figure out who he is - so far about 8 usernames. His IP is banned, but he uses proxies on top of proxies. Annyoing little bugger.

We hope that it is transparent to the forum, but we know that it is not.

I like the idea of a "penalty box" though. I would not mind the basement being this type of area.
 

Missouri Mule

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vauge said:
We actually have the same type of person now. We attempt to ban immediately when we figure out who he is - so far about 8 usernames. His IP is banned, but he uses proxies on top of proxies. Annyoing little bugger.

We hope that it is transparent to the forum, but we know that it is not.

I like the idea of a "penalty box" though. I would not mind the basement being this type of area.
I think I know who you are talking about

My idea about the "penalty box" is something like you would have at a hockey game. When a player acts out he is put in there for 15 minutes and is visible. He can sit there and meditate on his sins and when he comes back into the game will realize that he can't behave like that. I'm in favor of public scolding. Merely banning or suspending someone doesn't tell the rest of the debaters what is going on. They may think he or she is ignoring their posts or has left the forum. I think that is unfair to the offender especially if it is a close call. I've been suspended myself because of what someone has alleged that I said when it wasn't my intention at all. Some people have pretty thin skins and get offended rather easily and if they are controlling the web site they can do as they please. It leads to only one kind of debater left and that is either the left or right of the political spectrum. Such a forum is essentially worthless.
 

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galenrox said:
I like that idea, but we need to keep the basement open to those who need to get their "**** you's" out of the way also, cause although actually debating is fun, telling someone to **** off is also fun, and it lets the brain rest.
I don't have a problem with that if a person is inclined to want to engage in that kind of rhetoric. It serves its purpose. But serious discussion about critical issues ought to be conducted in a civilized way. We ought not to be discouraged from raising controversial issues and it ought not to get personal. It shouldn't have to be conducted in a "politically correct" way because that is just another word for censorship.
 

Schweddy

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Missouri Mule said:
I think I know who you are talking about

My idea about the "penalty box" is something like you would have at a hockey game. When a player acts out he is put in there for 15 minutes and is visible. He can sit there and meditate on his sins and when he comes back into the game will realize that he can't behave like that. I'm in favor of public scolding. Merely banning or suspending someone doesn't tell the rest of the debaters what is going on. They may think he or she is ignoring their posts or has left the forum. I think that is unfair to the offender especially if it is a close call. I've been suspended myself because of what someone has alleged that I said when it wasn't my intention at all. Some people have pretty thin skins and get offended rather easily and if they are controlling the web site they can do as they please. It leads to only one kind of debater left and that is either the left or right of the political spectrum. Such a forum is essentially worthless.
That is one of the very few complaints I have about vBulletin. Other forum software (mostly homemade) show which thread a user was banned for/warned for.

Other than that, I think you are spot on and this might be an avenue we need to pursue instead of a "newb" area.
 

Tashah

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Although I readily understand your motivation, I have reservations about a quarantine section for newbies. No one should have to jump through hoops to join, and then again... DP may fall prey to the law of unintended consequences.

Perhaps just monitor newbies surreptitiously for a bit to nip any behavioral problems in the bud if necessary. This could be accomplished via PM, stating the specific reason for the moderator message and advising them to read the forum rules 'completely and thoroughly'. I used to be one of the owners of a very large chat-room at MSN and we discovered that an infraction PM that was polite, yet firm, quickly eliminated most newbie problems and misunderstandings.

Tashah


 
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danarhea

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Missouri Mule said:
I think I know who you are talking about

My idea about the "penalty box" is something like you would have at a hockey game. When a player acts out he is put in there for 15 minutes and is visible. He can sit there and meditate on his sins and when he comes back into the game will realize that he can't behave like that. I'm in favor of public scolding. Merely banning or suspending someone doesn't tell the rest of the debaters what is going on. They may think he or she is ignoring their posts or has left the forum. I think that is unfair to the offender especially if it is a close call. I've been suspended myself because of what someone has alleged that I said when it wasn't my intention at all. Some people have pretty thin skins and get offended rather easily and if they are controlling the web site they can do as they please. It leads to only one kind of debater left and that is either the left or right of the political spectrum. Such a forum is essentially worthless.
15 minute penalties?????????? Wow!!!!!!!!!

I know of 2 minute which are minor, and 5 minute penalties which are major, but what did this guy do to get a 15 minute penalty? Kill a fan? If I ever visit your town, please remind me not to go to any hockey games. LOL.

Seriously, I think a time out box is an excellent idea. It is also pretty novel, and would distinguish this forum from many others. A forum always needs something that makes it unique from others.
 

Tashah

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The penalty-box is a novel idea!

Erm... Curious though, what would qualify as 'hooking'? ;)

XO
Tashah


 

danarhea

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Tashah said:
The penalty-box is a novel idea!

Erm... Curious though, what would qualify as 'hooking'? ;)

XO
Tashah
That would be a player seeking out a prostitute during intermission. Of course, fighting would be after the player marries her. Spearing? That sounds a little too kinky for me. :)
 

cnredd

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danarhea said:
That would be a player seeking out a prostitute during intermission. Of course, fighting would be after the player marries her. Spearing? That sounds a little too kinky for me. :)
I'm not even gonna mention anything about an "illegal stick"(rimshot!):2wave:
 

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This is probably a really stupid question but, what is a troll?
And how do I know one when I see one?

Smart aleck fairy tale references need not apply.:mrgreen:
 

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Nah. Let it all hang out. Let people expose themselves and let the community have at them. Much funner that way. How long did tik tok last? I mean, if you can't hang, your stuff is weak, everyone lets you know and it seems most don't return for shame and humiliation. Though I can't explain champs. They thought they could play with the big dogs but ended up spanked. There are exceptions of course. Take nefarious plot for instance. Do you really think he'll be around much longer? Piling on him is fast becoming popular. We seem to be a pretty good self policing community. I self police myself to the basement when need be. When I step over the line, push the envelope to far as it were, I'm told to behave and that works for me. Though I'm sure many out there would disagree.

vauge said:
We actually have the same type of person now. We attempt to ban immediately when we figure out who he is - so far about 8 usernames. His IP is banned, but he uses proxies on top of proxies. Annoying little bugger.

me- You mean Soviet guy? But I like picking on him. We should all go to his web site and act like he does here over there. Then we all get banned.

We hope that it is transparent to the forum, but we know that it is not.

I like the idea of a "penalty box" though. I would not mind the basement being this type of area.

me- Oh great, send them down here with me. But then, that would be punishment indeed. Yes, capital idea. Imagine being able to talk to no one at all but me for days on end. Or give that person his own thread in the "box" area. Every one can come pick on them but they can't leave the box. Threads could have names like, "teacher in a box", or "France".

Vague-Do you find some are just way more sensitive than others? Like individuals who repeatedly tattle on others? Or some that try to ban others because they can't stand the correctness of their argument? You seem like fart smeller and be able to glean these things. A little inside skinny/gossip if you will.
 
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mixedmedia said:
Smart aleck fairy tale references need not apply.:mrgreen:
The bastard offspring of 26x world champs and Billo. Similar to an Ogre yet stupider. They live under bridges on Barca-loungers and charge a toll for crossing. They use the bones of children to pick their teeth. Known to be frightened of monkeys and allergic to Pez. Plaid loin clothes or zebra thongs are a dead give away. Foul smelling, non-bathing, and always with bad gas, they are an ill tempered group, ugly as sin, and are not above using their toll proceeds to bribe their way into society and positions of power, where they lord pompously over those of keener intelect. They are also know to schmooze cute little socialists, which is very disturbing to witness. We actually have one as a member here at PD. Goes by the name of cnredd. Looks strangely like another "member" whom discretion forbids me from naming. If you can't handle the truth, stay away from the member pic thread. You'll see what I mean.
 

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teacher said:
The bastard offspring of 26x world champs and Billo. Similar to an Ogre yet stupider. They live under bridges on Barca-loungers and charge a toll for crossing. They use the bones of children to pick their teeth. Known to be frightened of monkeys and allergic to Pez. Plaid loin clothes or zebra thongs are a dead give away. Foul smelling, non-bathing, and always with bad gas, they are an ill tempered group, ugly as sin, and are not above using their toll proceeds to bribe their way into society and positions of power, where they lord pompously over those of keener intelect. They are also know to schmooze cute little socialists, which is very disturbing to witness. We actually have one as a member here at PD. Goes by the name of cnredd. Looks strangely like another "member" whom discretion forbids me from naming. If you can't handle the truth, stay away from the member pic thread. You'll see what I mean.
Pardon?:confused:
 

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Billo_Really said:
You look like Vauge.
Nah, I'm more seksier.

So teach, the short answer is that you would agree with a "penalty box"?

You mean Soviet guy? But I like picking on him. We should all go to his web site and act like he does here over there. Then we all get banned.
Soviet guy was banned for a reason that I am not at liberty to discuss, but he is not the banned member I was refering.

Do you find some are just way more sensitive than others? Like individuals who repeatedly tattle on others? Or some that try to ban others because they can't stand the correctness of their argument? You seem like fart smeller and be able to glean these things. A little inside skinny/gossip if you will.
No sir, the issue with the type of folks I am refering goes farther over the line than yourself. Yes, that is very possible. Your not as annoying as you think, but your signature has come VERY close to quoting what is in the basement - big no if you actually quote from there. We have come to know you and expect your unique humor that you bring. The trolls (one whom is disruptive just to be disruptive) are the ones I am talking about.

Yes, some members are indeed more sensative than others, and some just do not understand what civil discussion is. A member is unable to ban another member here, no matter how many times they are reported. Each reported post is investigated on a case by case basis.

You seem like a pretty smart feller yourself. It's hard to be as nuts as you - your good at it! :mrgreen:
 

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vauge said:
Nah, I'm more seksier.

So teach, the short answer is that you would agree with a "penalty box"?

Soviet guy was banned for a reason that I am not at liberty to discuss, but he is not the banned member I was refering.

No sir, the issue with the type of folks I am refering goes farther over the line than yourself. Yes, that is very possible. Your not as annoying as you think, but your signature has come VERY close to quoting what is in the basement - big no if you actually quote from there. We have come to know you and expect your unique humor that you bring. The trolls (one whom is disruptive just to be disruptive) are the ones I am talking about.

Yes, some members are indeed more sensative than others, and some just do not understand what civil discussion is. A member is unable to ban another member here, no matter how many times they are reported. Each reported post is investigated on a case by case basis.

You seem like a pretty smart feller yourself. It's hard to be as nuts as you - your good at it! :mrgreen:
I think I know exactly who you permanently banned. I'll PM you.
 
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