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View Full Version : Replying to any Crude "Anonymous" poster(s)



Tom_In_Cincy
06-28-2002, 08:11 AM
To all the CCB participants:

There has been a 'rash' (hate to use that term, but it seems to fit) of "Anonymous" posts that seem to spew emotional opinions.. if you respond, you are just encouraging them to continue what they do best, antagonize.

Please think twice about responding to these types of posts. I know I have been tempted too many times and it is difficult not to want to attact them for what they have said. But, it is much better that you ignore them, because if they can't find anyone to play with here... maybe they will go away and play elsewhere.

Just my opinion.. I hate to see these types of posts and CCB members replying and then strings of threads taking up memory on this board..

Please, just take a moment and think about the level of good comments as opposed to the inane and emotional posts of those that only come into this board just to stir things up.. which would you prefer to be a part of?

Rich R.
06-28-2002, 08:18 AM
I agree Tom. Rich R.

06-28-2002, 08:24 AM
Tom, I'm in 100% agreement with you!!!

John in NH
06-28-2002, 08:32 AM
Hi Tom,

Why not make this a member's only board and exclude people who are not members!

Another option is to give anonymous users read only access.

John

9 Ball Girl
06-28-2002, 08:44 AM
Sounds like a plan to me.

Tom_In_Cincy
06-28-2002, 08:44 AM
Read only access is a good idea... thanks for the suggestion,

Maybe if we can get enough members to influence the webmaster to change this.. we could eliminate a lot of wasted posts..

Thanks again

Wally_in_Cincy
06-28-2002, 09:24 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: Tom_In_Cincy:</font><hr> Read only access is a good idea... thanks for the suggestion,

Maybe if we can get enough members to influence the webmaster to change this.. we could eliminate a lot of wasted posts..

Thanks again <hr></blockquote>

I don't know if that's really a solution.
One can register and still remain "anonymous" to the other CCBers.

MikeM
06-28-2002, 09:27 AM
I will not dignify your post with a reply!!

MM

Tom_In_Cincy
06-28-2002, 09:35 AM
Wally,
I agree.. but at least it makes them (anons) do something that requires a registration process that will make them think twice about posting garbage..

TomBrooklyn
06-28-2002, 09:41 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: MikeM:</font><hr> I will not dignify your post with a reply!!<hr></blockquote>Well said!

06-28-2002, 09:57 AM

heater451
06-28-2002, 09:57 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: Wally_in_Cincy:</font><hr>I don't know if that's really a solution.
One can register and still remain "anonymous" to the other CCBers. <hr></blockquote>
Requiring registration would also exclude some 'members', who simply wish to post without registering, such as Fran Crimi, and a few others who I believe to be 'legitimate' posters.

Kato
06-28-2002, 10:09 AM
Not good, at least until we get Fran and Chris in NC registered. I personally will put up with all the crap just to see them post when they do. I also remember Shawn Putnam (or somebody claiming to be) posting not to long ago. So you see, it's not the unregistered, it's the Annon's that cause the problems.

Kato~~~brand new bigtime Fran Crimi fan

stickman
06-28-2002, 10:22 AM
This is done on a lot of discussion boards. (Before you can post, you must register.) When you have a poster that does nothing but cause problems, you warn them, and if you continue to have problems, you ban them. It doesn't completely eliminate problems, but does seem to slow them down. The system can be setup to disallow multiple user names from the same IP address. This could be inconvenient for spouses that post on the board, as it wouldn't allow for separate identities. Even if you don't incorporate this into the system, just having to associate a nickname to the posts is enough to prevent some of the negative posts. The way around this is if you do not not have a static IP address. The person that doesn't have a static IP can just reregister after being banned and start over again.

The other option is to do as you suggest Tom, ignore them. These types are looking to stir something or someone up. If they are unable to do it, they normally will move on. If their posts don't produce the result they wanted, it's no fun for them.

I'm surprised by the lack of sponsor advertisers on the site. Most sites I've been affiliated with require registration and use the registered member numbers to promote the sale of advertising on their site. Just as BD touts it's subscription numbers to sell ads in it's magazine. When the site makes money, the operators are more inclined to invest to see it operate more smoothly.

I was a moderator on a large website. There were probably 12 or more of us. No pay. The moderators were simply given special status and certain administrator function capabilities. A big part was policing the site. I think this site does a good job of policing itself. JMO My previous experience tells me, you could go to a lot of trouble to correct this and still have a lot of the same problems.

Rich R.
06-28-2002, 10:28 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: Kato:</font><hr> Not good, at least until we get Fran and Chris in NC registered. I personally will put up with all the crap just to see them post when they do. I also remember Shawn Putnam (or somebody claiming to be) posting not to long ago. So you see, it's not the unregistered, it's the Annon's that cause the problems.

Kato~~~brand new bigtime Fran Crimi fan <hr></blockquote>
Kato, although Fran is not registered, Chis in NC is registered. It seems that Chris just chooses not to login.

I don't believe the problem is registering. It is the anonymous comments that are the problem. Although some are constructive, some are nothing but personal attacks. There are many good posts by those that are not registered and some are posted anonymously.
We all have to refrain from responding to the anonymous personal attacks.
Rich R.

06-28-2002, 10:35 AM
Rich, very, VERY well said. The most effective way to curb such posts is by not responding to them. It shouldn't have to come down to banning non-offenders or non-registered people from using the board. All it takes is a little restraint on everyone's part to consciously avoid responding to any inflammatory "anonymous" postings.

SPetty
06-28-2002, 11:18 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: Rich R.:</font><hr> I don't believe the problem is registering. It is the anonymous comments that are the problem. Although some are constructive, some are nothing but personal attacks. There are many good posts by those that are not registered and some are posted anonymously.
We all have to refrain from responding to the anonymous personal attacks.<hr></blockquote>

Thank you, Rich, I was beginning to get scared! This is a voice of reason.

If you don't like the unregistered posts, don't read them. If you read them, don't respond to them, especially if they seem inflammatory. It seems pretty easy.

Like Rich said, there are many good unregistered posters other than Fran and Chris. Would we really want everyone to register? Every Tom, Dick and Harry (sorry, Tom, Dick and Harry...) who has a quick question about which pool table to buy or "women in pool" has to register just to ask one quick question and then leave? If they come back in six months, they'll have to re-register, because they'll not remember the username and/or password they chose...

I'm with Rich. There is no need to force registration to use this board. I think there is a place for the unregistered here. What does forcing the unregistered to register even accomplish? You can register with virtually no information at all, right? I don't understand how forcing the unregistered to register benefits the already registered...

stickman
06-28-2002, 11:49 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: SPetty:</font><hr> What does forcing the unregistered to register even accomplish? <hr></blockquote>

What it does is make for easy identification of those that post just to stir trouble.

I do agree with you that it probably can be effectively handled without going to all the trouble of mandatory registration. Even with mandatory registration you will have the same problem. I've seen it first hand.

Tom_In_Cincy
06-28-2002, 01:32 PM
Stickman... you are correct.. mandatory registration isn't the way to handle the issue.. but it is an alternative.

The emotional responses that usally come from these types of posters.. are mostly knee "jerk" reactions.. and don't require much thought.. but if they have to register to post, maybe they will think twice about it.. can't hurt to have a read only forum.. and if you have to respond.. register..

Scott Lee
06-28-2002, 01:41 PM
I disagree...this forum is open to ALL, whether they choose to lurk and just read, or participate in discussions, or ask a question. There are only a few anonymous posters who try to cause trouble, and their rhetoric points them out pretty easily. It is much more feasible to just ignore those posters, than to ban outsiders from participating, imo.

Scott Lee

06-28-2002, 01:57 PM
does ccb then become a cliquish, incestuous, club of 50 posters? (wait a minute! it might already be!) growing stale and dying. isn't this censorship? the internet is open and free. be lucky to enjoy this freedom that you want to take away from others.

if you don't like it, just do what tom suggests and don't reply. there are others who enjoy and understand the "open forum".

and tom,,,what if it is a provocative post by a regular? do they get better treatment because they are registered?

this is an open forum on a VERY PUBLIC SITE. there are places like delphi forums where you can start your own discussion group, and preserve a great deal of the forum's anonymity from the prying eyes of newbies and anonymous trollers. just start your group there, then invite certain posters to join you. you would be moderator in total control /ccboard/images/icons/smile.gif

have a good time. /ccboard/images/icons/smile.gif

06-28-2002, 02:17 PM
QUOTE: "but if they have to register to post, maybe they will think twice about it.. can't hurt to have a read only forum.. and if you have to respond.. register.."""

I vehemently disagree, Tom. It CAN hurt....it hurts this board to stifle any person's ability to contribute something meaningful/relevant. etc. I've seen many insightful and thought-provoking discussions by non-registered users.

It would be a tremendous loss to the board if those unregistered users were unable to contribute just because some registered users cannot seem to control their impulse to engage in a flame war with "anonymous" postings. With every due respect, I'd also point out that registration doesn't ensure "quality" or non-inflammatory content. Perhaps you've missed Patrick's "I am the light of the world, the supreme being, yada yada yada" thread. I personally find that irksome, but I realize that I can choose to ignore his posts without depriving you of the ability to read them if you choose.

There are many different reasons people choose not to register; in fact, I think Fran has pointed out several in previous discussions. However, both Fran and I regularly log in using our handle, as I've been many others do.

Forcing registration in order to post does not "identify" anyone (nor will it cause anyone to "think twice" about what they post) because it's possible to register several different identities. There are too many ways around such requirements to make any identification meaningful.

Tom_In_Cincy
06-28-2002, 02:27 PM
If registration is not what you want to do.. I understand about what you have stated.. My original post is the way I like to deal with the 'anon' posters.. I usually read and then ignore..

Registration should always be an option.. but, you do have a lot more options if you do post often..

Stifling anyone's meaningful/relevant comments is not done by registering.. it just takes a few minutes and you're done.

Stifling inane posts.. is a different issue.. and best handled by ignoring them.. like my 1st post suggested.

By the way... I have enjoyed most of your posts and find them on the 'stimulating' end of the spectrum..

06-28-2002, 04:01 PM
Thanks for the nice words about my posts....that's very kind.

I do understand that your initial post was along the "ignore it if you don't like it" vein, and I'm in total agreement with you on that.

But the subsequent responses suggesting a rush by many to adopt a "Lord of the Flies" mentality in *forcing* registration does concern me greatly. To me, that feels like a knee-jerk reaction and amounts to using a sledge-hammer when a simple finish-nail hammer (or better yet a feather) will do just fine.

QUOTE: "...registering.. it just takes a few minutes and you're done."

I don't have issue with the small amount of time it takes to register, so it doesn't matter to me how easy or quick it is.

QUOTE: "Stifling anyone's meaningful/relevant comments is not done by registering..."

No, the act of registering doesn't stifle comments, but denying someone the ability to post or reply *unless* they register does. I (or others like me) have made an evaluative decision not to register, and if this forum decided to coerce registration as a condition of being allowed to post, I would simply not contribute. That stifles any input I may make that could be useful or informative to others. I personally don't think this approach is a wise one, and the idea that it couldn't do any harm was what I responded to.

I still wholeheartedly support your initial assertion....the best way to maintain the quality of this forum is for individuals to choose to disregard those who (by whatever name) post as a means to agitate. A splendid suggestion that was, and one which I will heartily second.

06-28-2002, 04:04 PM
Whoops....I know you'll think otherwise, but that wasn't intentional (forgot to type my name in). Let's try again.

Thanks for the nice words about my posts....that's very kind.

I do understand that your initial post was along the "ignore it if you don't like it" vein, and I'm in total agreement with you on that.

But the subsequent responses suggesting a rush by many to adopt a "Lord of the Flies" mentality in *forcing* registration does concern me greatly. To me, that feels like a knee-jerk reaction and amounts to using a sledge-hammer when a simple finish-nail hammer (or better yet a feather) will do just fine.

QUOTE: "...registering.. it just takes a few minutes and you're done."

I don't have issue with the small amount of time it takes to register, so it doesn't matter to me how easy or quick it is.

QUOTE: "Stifling anyone's meaningful/relevant comments is not done by registering..."

No, the act of registering doesn't stifle comments, but denying someone the ability to post or reply *unless* they register does. I (or others like me) have made an evaluative decision not to register, and if this forum decided to coerce registration as a condition of being allowed to post, I would simply not contribute. That stifles any input I may make that could be useful or informative to others. I personally don't think this approach is a wise one, and the idea that it couldn't do any harm was what I responded to.

I still wholeheartedly support your initial assertion....the best way to maintain the quality of this forum is for individuals to choose to disregard those who (by whatever name) post as a means to agitate. A splendid suggestion that was, and one which I will heartily second.

Tom_In_Cincy
06-28-2002, 04:17 PM
Anon,

<blockquote><font class="small">Quote:</font><hr>No, the act of registering doesn't stifle comments, but denying someone the ability to post or reply *unless* they register does. I (or others like me) have made an evaluative decision not to register, and if this forum decided to coerce registration as a condition of being allowed to post, I would simply not contribute. That stifles any input I may make that could be useful or informative to others. I personally don't think this approach is a wise one, and the idea that it couldn't do any harm was what I responded to. <hr></blockquote>

If this were a registration first to reply forum, your dicision not to register is what would be keeping you from posting and hence stifling your responses. You would be the one that makes that choice.

I do not favor a "registration to post" idea. I don't like the idea of being restricted (not being able to post).

But, if this were a that type of forum, I would register. And, I think that most(a majority anyway) lurkers, do register to take advantage of all the options available with the BBS.

The BD CCB FAQ states:

<blockquote><font class="small">Quote:</font><hr>By registering a Username, you will be able to edit your profile and preferences. You will get the most out of your time here if you change your profile to suit your individual tastes. There are alot of options in your profile to make your experience here more enjoyable, so please take a few moments to try the various settings. Also only people with registered Usernames can take advantage of the "New Posts" feature upon each visit. <hr></blockquote>

06-28-2002, 04:56 PM
Tom, I don't want to belabor the point, and this has the markings of a chicken-and-egg issue, so I'll make this one last comment.

*QUOTE* - *If this were a registration first to reply forum, your dicision not to register is what would be keeping you from posting and hence stifling your responses. You would be the one that makes that choice.*

Perhaps it would make more sense if I explained it this way. I choose not to register (here and other places) because I have a problem with being *required* to provide an e-mail address. I don't care how strongly a given website promises not to provide this information to third parties...I don't believe any of them.

(Anecdotally, Joke-of-the-Day made that same pledge, but when they were bought out by the Humor Network, they didn't honor that pledge. I used to believe them all, but the flood of e-mails I now get from many factions who are inordinately concerned with the size of my Johnson and the receding latitude of my hairline made me see the error of my ways.)

I am now a vehement non-believer. These pledges should now read "we promise not to do thus and such, UNLESS we decide at a future date for some inane reason that we would benefit more from changing this policy, in which case we will do so without asking you."

Anyway, I digress. Yes, in theory my decision not to register keeps me from posting. But that decision isn't one made voluntarily by me. It's made because the forum has converted to a format that makes it uncomfortable for me to post. Simply put, I WANT to post, but I wouldn't.

If John Doe, registered user, posts a question and I have an answer or a suggestion that is helpful to him, but I cannot post because of the above conditions, I'm not the only one who loses....John Doe does, too. He doesn't get the benefit of input which he has come here seeking, and he misses a unique perspective that I might have offered. The greater good suffers for the idiocies of the few.

If that were the only possible way to handle the situation, that would be one thing. But it isn't the only way, and it certainly isn't the best way. Your suggestion....ignoring the Anonymous postings meant only to inflame with no additive value....was a much better one.

I know you aren't a supporter of the registration required approach, so don't take this as my trying to convert the converted. We both agree it's a bad approach. I simply reply on your comment as part of the thread.

Tom_In_Cincy
06-28-2002, 05:15 PM
Aldewey,

I understand your circumstances behind your decisions, and respect your opinions.

You are not the type of "anon" posters I was referring to in the frist place.

And, we agree that it is best that this is a free posting forum.

And, we agree that to ignore is the best way to deal with the other types of posts.

Tom_In_Cincy
06-28-2002, 05:58 PM
arnie

<blockquote><font class="small">Quote:</font><hr>and tom,,,what if it is a provocative post by a regular? do they get better treatment because they are registered?<hr></blockquote>

I have contacted the webmaster on several occasions to request posts be removed, just for that reason.. and have yet been denied.

06-28-2002, 08:17 PM
well, at least you are being even handed.

and you have every right to express this point of view as any other. i hope it all stays status quo. certainly there are bounds that cannot be crossed. threats, for instance. foul language, if there is an established policy against it.
i prefer to think of an internet forum as a gathering place for like interests from all around the world. this is no longer your neighborhood bar chat with people you know. so your going to get varied opinions, like it or not. the chance for a thread to diverge is cool, i think.

there is also a form of elitism being practiced because
"anonymity" appears to be tied to this whole issue. to not lend credance to a post simply because of anonymity makes no sense. then, everyone acts macho and superior, and starts to call "anonymous" out. i only see reason for this when some blowhard starts acting superior himself. otherwise, who cares.

by the way, i was serious about that delphi forum comment. i belong to one "community" and it is rather nice. there are pleasantries every day, jokes abound, help is sought and given on all subjects. but the forum never "grows" if you know what i mean.

Tom_In_Cincy
06-29-2002, 10:10 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote:</font><hr>there is also a form of elitism being practiced because "anonymity" appears to be tied to this whole issue. to not lend credance to a post simply because of anonymity makes no sense. then, everyone acts macho and superior, and starts to call "anonymous" out. i only see reason for this when some blowhard starts acting superior himself. otherwise, who cares.<hr></blockquote>

I am not aware of any 'elitest' attitudes here, other than 'pride' of participation. No one claims to own this forum, its present state is 'open to all'.

I welcome all poster's opinions about all pool related subjects (the main purpose of this forum). My purpose to the original post was to get some sort of pattern of response for the negative posts, to ensure that everyone's visit to this forum is a good one, and continues to be so.

Good Manners.. mostly.. would accomplish this.

06-29-2002, 07:01 PM
Well Tom, I think we both know that I am one of the "emotional response", knee "jerk" posters you referred to but, there are times when something good comes out of even this. Now, I too am all for manners and conviviality, and I am perfectly capable of conducting a civil and serious discussion. However, there are occasionally threads started on this forum which, while not falling strictly into the 'personal attack' column are nonetheless abhorrent to the 'regulars' here. (Registered and not ) Some of these posts demand a response, and I for one am perfectly willing to give one. Seems I'm not alone in this, as I've yet to see a thread where mine was the only response. It would also seem that these threads interest an awful lot of other people, as they tend to spike some pretty impressive 'views' numbers. If these occasional threads bother you so much Tom, why not just not read them? We can all tell when a thread is going to engender the type of response you don't like, so why not just pass it over? When we get bored with the bear baiting, the thread dies anyway, so really where's the harm? Like Cheese says, sometimes it's fun to try and get the aliens flying in formation! /ccboard/images/icons/smile.gif
Oh, I almost forgot why I responded in the first place! I've been the target for my share of "anonymous" attacks, and I still think mandatory registration is a bad idea! Those who wish to provoke will do so, no matter what hoops they have to jump through, while those with worthwhile opinions might not be so willing to share them if they had to do tricks first!

Tom_In_Cincy
06-29-2002, 10:33 PM
Lorri,
I do read, and then ignore a lot of responses. My point for the entire post was to bring this option of not responding to the inane anonymous posters more into the open.
I only suggest that to respond to these types of post only encourages more of the same....
I never expect them to stop.. and even mentioned that I too feel strongly about responding and am often tempted to say exactly what you and others do say..... more often than not.. the responses are already posted prior to me having a chance..

I only agreed that 'registration' is an alternative, not a mandentory means to post..

Lorri, I do enjoy your posts.. you have a great style of retorting.

I just don't like all the trash I have been seeing by anonymous posters lately..

Alfie
06-29-2002, 11:13 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: Tom_In_Cincy:</font><hr> I just don't like all the trash I have been seeing by anonymous posters lately.. <hr></blockquote> That would be from some but not all anonymous posters, n'est ce pas?

06-30-2002, 12:57 PM
Hey Tom!
Thanks. I too dislike the trash, and I envy you your self-control! Me, I'm more of a 'shoot from the lip' type! ha ha