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27 February 2014
Forum Posts: 4392
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31 March 2008
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I don't know about the rest in peace thread (perhaps someone self-deleted), but I removed a bunch of stuff from the PM thread because it was way off topic, to the extent that the thread had no useful purpose any more. I edited Ahhh Girl's original message (with her consent) to clarify what the thread was for, and to hopefully bring things back on track.

I'm generally not keen on censorship but that thread was an absolute car crash. I don't need a load of in-fighting when something constructive is being attempted.

Please don't spoil my day; I'm miles away

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27 February 2014
Billy Rhythm
Candlestick Park
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22 December 2013
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Joe said 

I'm generally not keen on censorship but that thread was an absolute car crash. I don't need a load of in-fighting when something constructive is being attempted.


I wouldn't mind seeing a bit more editing getting done on here personally, I mean, I kinda like that there's less restrictions on expressing yourself here than most other internet forums, but too often I've observed many interesting conversations quickly degenerate into something not at all relevant to what's being discussed and usually there's no arguing going on at all.  Conversations do evolve into different tangents all the time, that's great, "off-topic" isn't always such a bad thing really but it's most unfortunate when it becomes something that resembles more of a personal "off-topic" conversation between only a handful of people that nobody other than themselves can relate to, or something that'd be more appropriately done through PM channels.


This wouldn't be all that much of a problem except for that these forums are largely configured to make the most recent posts more readily accessible with the current layout.  Take this recent thread for example  a very interesting topic question where somebody attempts ("successfully" I might add) to pick up a conversation where they've all ready created a thread for elsewhere instead of contributing to the great topic at hand.  One of the most interesting questions (because nobody'd really pondered it before) posted here recently attracts a lot of attention and builds up much momentum quickly before losing its lustre just as fast, and it doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out why.  Now, even if the question had been explored to its full capacity before being derailed, someone new to the thread has to filter through a lot of deadwood to unearth meanmistermustard's considerable body of evidence posted on page 1, many (including myself) begin reading threads from the most recent posts and I could see why some would move on after reading only a few here, it's too bad because it was an interesting conversation.


Arguing isn't such a bad thing either, differing points of view is what makes any old discussion, a lively discussion.  It's only an argument when someone takes/makes it personal but if you take the who posted out of the what was posted, you can have a great debate instead, everyone should know that when they post an opinion, something everyone has a right to, on a public forum you also open up your words to much scrutiny for anyone has the right to challenge your opinion as well, just as long as they're being respectful about it.  Far too often I see "car crashes" that are the result of somebody taking something personally which was only intended as expressing a difference of opinion.  Yes, Beatles fans can be passionate about their Fab Four experiences, and being Beatle Fans is about the only thing that we all do have in common, so expect to disagree on just about everything else I say!....:-)







27 February 2014
Sitting in an English garden
Apple rooftop
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27 February 2014

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Billy Rhythm said

meanmistermustard said
Who gets to decide what posts are appropriate and what are hindrances to the conversation, debate, whatever you want to call it? As soon as posts start to get deleted due to another person's opinion on it you enter very dangerous ground (obviously there are times when posts have to be deleted eg offensive, blatant spam, copyright infringement (ie music file sharing download links)).

If a conversation is getting away from the topic then its up to others to get it back on topic, ranging from polite requests to quoting the sections of posts that are relevant and will do so. Most discussion threads are only a handful pages so don't take long to go back thru, especially when a number of posts are only a few lines or paragraphs or can be quickly skimmed or skipped entirely.


I think that you have to trust in the Moderator's discretion, and if one feels that they're overstepping their boundaries then there is an Administrator to intervene, if necessary.  The lunatics shouldn't run the Asylum, and please don't anybody take that quip personally...:-)


Indeed but there has to be a measure before it happens, otherwise the axe can swing whenever. No one is saying the mods shouldn't govern and moderate the site so it runs properly and to a set standard or that the users rule, i just don't like the idea of posts being deleted because a thread is heavily off-topic. If the discussion interests someone so much then go back and read it from the beginning. 

Don’t make your love suffer insecurities, trade the baggage of self to set another one free. ('Paper Skin' - Kendall Payne)
3 March 2014
Forum Posts: 4392
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31 March 2008
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Hi. Sorry for the late reply. I've been offline for a few days, just catching up with things.

LHL, yes it was that particular dialogue that made me want to wipe the slate clean. It had no relevance to the wider discussion, and was a disagreement that probably should have been dealt with in a PM (if the PM system let stuff get through). There was a lot going on on that particular day, I didn't have a lot of time to unpick a meandering thread that was asking questions about its very existence, contained a dispute between two members, and which had been locked by a moderator who didn't know what to do with it.

The way the messages were interwoven meant there wasn't an easy way to delete the personal disagreements and leave up the other discussions. I did try but it wouldn't have made sense as a thread. So it was a question of either leaving it all up (no), deleting the entire thing (possible) or trimming it back to how it is now. Since it was a thread with a purpose, but that purpose wasn't very well defined from the outset, I edited it to hopefully give a bit of clarity. The easiest thing was just to start afresh. Let's move on.

(I'm not looking for sympathy here, but please bear in mind I'm just one person running a website. This isn't a business; I make a bit of money but this isn't my job - I have to fit things around work and family, which sometimes gives me just 30 minutes or less a day to be in Beatleland, and sometimes by necessity I do things hastily and/or don't explain decisions very well. Also, hat tip to the brilliant mods who generously give their time to help out here.)

On the subject of deletions and off-topic discussions, I generally don't have a problem as long as people keep sight of the wider purpose. But if people start arguing and it gets personal then it doesn't belong here. As a general rule I'm not normally going to delete something that someone's put effort into if I don't think it adds much. That's just disrespectful. This is a community, and it's made good by its members being good. But if someone came into my home and started fighting or wrecking conversations I'd probably kick them out.

This is my home too. Everyone's invited but please don't draw on the walls.

4 March 2014
Ron Nasty
"Where have you been?" "I'm not telling you..."
Apple rooftop
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I can look at what happened with the PM thread in two ways, and I haven't contributed to this thread because of that.

I could see it as a forumite, who saw what I believed was my raising a legitimate concern about aspects of the thread, and made clear I believed that as it was I felt it was a bad idea. Mine was one of the posts deleted, and at the time I felt that was done with no attempt to address to the points I raised.

As a former mod, I could also see it from the point of view of what to do with it. Usually when threads go bad, it is not as instant a thing as happened with the PM thread, and so deletions are not usually as noticeable.

Deletions do happen, but they are never done lightly. They are never done without thought (except in the case of obvious spam). Often things are deleted for the good of our community. I can think of examples of that, and of people who have been offended by posts being deleted — even though they were deleted for the offence they would cause, but with the poster unable to understand that.

Despite my own, what I felt was a legitimate raising of concerns, post being removed, were I still a moderator, I would have struggled with tidying up the PM thread and bringing it back to purpose, a purpose that will work even better now we have the '@' facility.

My concern that the legitimate concerns raised by some, including myself, about the PM thread were just being ignored by deleting them also proved false. I was asked to take a look at it yesterday evening as some further changes had been made, which I assume have come from a discussion between Joe and Ahhh Girl (and a shame you didn't mention them here, Joe). My concerns on every member here being able to decide on their own privacy has been answered by the last line added to the first post, and with anyone wanting to make use of the thread being asked to read that first post within the title of it now.

So, the privacy concerns were not ignored, it just them a few extra days to come up with the correct way to address them. I am happy with the solution.

Again, as a former mod, everybody has the right to delete any post they have made, as happened in the “Rest in Peace” thread. Somebody made a post, reconsidered it, explained to the two posters who commented on it, and all removed their posts.

The only time someone might find a complaint about removing something, is if what they have posted leads to a discussion, heated or otherwise, delete/blank the post that began the discussion, and then carry on as if we all can understand what started it.

There is a difference between those examples.

I am really saying these things here:

  1. Joe and the mods always consider and think carefully about deleting things.
  2. Everybody is welcome to delete any post of theirs they make.
  3. Expect complaints if you delete something that sparks a conversation (good or bad), and its absence makes nonsense of that conversation.


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"I only said we were bigger than Rod... and now there's all this!" Ron Nasty

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