Andy R sez:
We private message the member a link to the rule and let them know which one they violated. Once we are certain a member is aware of the rules but continues to disregard them or violate them our next step is to give them an Official Warning.
Doesn't always work thataway Andy...
From direct, personal experience:
I tend to get involved in controversial subjects, in DISCUSSION forums - "discussion" would seem to indicate the likelihood of point and counterpoint posts, rather than strictly "warm, fuzzy feeling" opinions where all posters are fully in agreement - that's why they are CALLED "discussion forums"...
That said, I usually very carefully word my personal opinions in a manner that is clear and to the point - but ISSUE RELATED, and not personal, or directed to any other specific thread users. Naturally, when a member expresses a counter opinion to what the majority view happens to be - regardless of wording or intent, SOME will feel *personally* attacked, and either complain - or respond in what IS a personal attack!
To the point of THIS post and example, I, personally, disapprove of the practice of many RVers to pretty much exclusively use Walmart as their roosting point of choice in their travels - and WITHOUT naming names, or singling out ANY thread members, have stated in related Walmart threads, my own opinion that such behavior is freeloading, and abuse of an otherwise kind gesture on Walmart's part for what I, personally consider occasional* use by RVing customers.
Isn't MY opinion on the issue as valid as everyone else's?
Naturally. SOME posters (and moderators!) in that group saw fit to take my *issue related*, PERSONAL OPINION, as an attack directed specifically at them, or at the very least, too strongly expressed for so "genteel" a group in a *discussion forum*...
I subsequently, WITHOUT warning, was put on notice by a moderator as being reprimanded, and a "strike" awarded.
THEN, a few days later, I got a SECOND similar action, without warning, from ANOTHER moderator, for that very SAME post!
After a responding PM from me, that second action WAS reversed - but it should not have happened, especially without warning - at ALL!
On another occasion, in response to what I intended as a humorous comment in a thread, a responding post, directed STRAIGHT at me Called me a %$&#*, and also made reference to me as "an unhappy old man who couldn't afford nice things - and resented those who could". After waiting what I considered an appropriate length of time for moderator action, I responded to that abusive post in what I considered an appropriate, but far less abusive manner - and then also reported the abusive post to the moderator.
Now sure, I COULD have waited longer for eventual moderator action - if it ever actually arrived - and done it all quietly behind the scenes - but MEANWHILE - there was that abusive and insulting post there being read steadily by all who wandered by...
End result? *I* got jumped by the moderator for responding to the abusive poster, and then reporting his post - and was told MY response was WORSE than his - even though I in no way called him any names or similarly abused him as he had done me! Doesn't really do much to encourage waiting for, or appealing for, moderator help in clearly abusive attacks in open forums - NOR would doing it all "behind the scene", while *I* was being directly and openly attacked in PUBLIC...
NOW - all the above, as I have just described it, is typical of my personal method of expressing myself - I have carefully attempted to keep my comments ISSUE related, and not personal, but bet I will again be criticised for my comments, by both members AND moderators...
SURE, this board, like most others, runs by the"Golden Rule" - which in practical, real-life actions is, "HE who HAS the Gold, RULES" - and for sure, this board is entirely free to operate any way, by any rules - or lack thereof, they choose. BUT, while the rules are generally fair, and the vast majority of moderators are kind and conscientious, FEW of them are likely to be nominated for Sainthood - they are human, and have their own agendas and prejudices, just like the REST of us - and SOMETIMES, those agendas and prejudices get in the way of sound judgement and cause reactionary behavior.
Why would a board moderator, and/or Administrators be generally unwilling to OPENLY discuss issues, if their rules are fair, and their application done with the greatest of equality and progressive administration? Sure, no personalities - but what about the METHODS used in selecting "offenders" - as well as the way reprimands are *progressively* applied?
We can openly criticise Presidents, Governors and Mayors behavior and actions - but if you are unhappy with the way a board is run or moderated, you will quickly be shown the door...
I like this board, and the many subjects covered - I learn a lot - and on occasion, am able to help others - but if I was to list one overwhelming fault, it would be that the board is so tightly controlled as to ITSELF be abusive in a fair number of cases, where selective and unequal treatment has occurred without warning, and in an erratic manner.
Unless this post, or other unintended personal opinions of my own are deemed by the "powers that be" sufficient to cause me to be banned - or I myself choose to leave, I plan to hang around for a while!