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Author Topic: Why People Were Banned  (Read 20034 times)

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Why People Were Banned
« on: October 28, 2011, 07:43:23 AM »
I'm going to lay out very specifically why a large number of posters were banned primarily for behavior that happened on this forum.  Taken directly from the Forum Rules:

By registering to join this forum and have posting privileges, you are entering into an agreement to abide by the rules of this forum. If you do not believe you can honor the rules, please refrain from registering. 

It doesn't get any more black and white than this.  When you joined yo had to click on an "I agree" button that you had read the forum rules and agreed to abide by them.  Don't like the rules or how the forum is moderated?  Don't join.  As simple as that. 

As stated further in the forum rules, moderators have no obligation to explain why they have taken the moderating action they have so if you publish a thread wanting to know why your thread was closed, don't be surprised if you are permanently gagged from participating on this forum.

Every person banned had publicly questioned, complained or demanded the moderators explain their actions or express disapproval of the moderation.  The vast majority of them had not bothered to privately PM a mod or use the report feature to assist moderators in doing their job.  I personally spent hours going through the Moderation Log to document every one of the 167 members who, in a 30 day period, had made reports and than I compared that information to who was making public drama over moderation.   In fact, anytime you see public posts griping about moderation, it should be a red flag that perhaps this person is creating drama and needs to be reported.  Hundreds of people successfully use the Report Post feature and many, many people know they can privately PM a mod with a concern, even concerns about other mods!   The forum rules will be amended in a day or so to reflect the further clarification.

If you donít like the moderators, the forum owner, or the way this forum is moderated, please donít register and post.
It should go without saying that adults know how to walk away quietly from forums they dislike whereas children rant and leave Good Bye Cruel Forum posts.

It's obvious that there is a lot of bitterness and resentment about perceived moderation choices.  It's also obvious that people did not walk away from the forum with dignity or decorum whatsoever. and its affiliates reserve the right, in their sole discretion, to edit, refuse to post or remove any material submitted to or posted on the forum. We also reserve the right to gag and/or ban people deemed to be unedifying to the health of the forum and not feel any obligation to explain why. Either you trust that the moderators of this forum are acting with its best interests in mind by way of majority consensus or you donít trust them. If the latter, please refrain from registering for an account. 

This is the third time the "don't like it, leave or don't register" rule appears.  It doesn't get much more explicit than this.  It's a big Internet world out there and I am sure there must be other forums which are better suited to those who dislike the Ehell style of moderation. 

The vast majority of the recently banned violated most or all of the above forum rules.  Then some violated this one:

It has been a very longstanding and previously unwritten policy of the forum owner that anyone bringing trouble to the forum will be automatically banned.  "Trouble" is defined as, 1) making a post on Ehell linking to another forum, mentioning them by specific name or hinting in such a way that it is obvious who or what forum is being referred to for critical commentary.  General references are OK (example: "A wedding planning board I use to post at.....")  2) Posting trash talk in other forums or blogs that directs or points unwelcome "visitors" to harass the Ehell forum or encourages a forum war in any way. 

Hostile, embittered members who could not walk away from the forum are what I would describe as "unwelcome visitors" but I'll amend the rule to clarify its meaning for the legalists.


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Re: Why People Were Banned
« Reply #1 on: October 31, 2011, 10:42:07 AM »
I'm going to amend this post to state that not everyone moderated recently was engaged in publicly questioning moderation of the forum.   

I did not moderate people based on whether they were members of a secret group.  I have no access to that group's member list and no one has really "tattled" about who happens to be a member (although people have been PMing to tell they are).   It was precisely because I did not know who was in the secret group that I moderated solely on behavior I was seeing in threads and through Report to Moderator complaints.  After being alerted that there was a problem where unnamed members of a secret group were intent on causing problems on Ehell for a handful of members, I did it based on the activity I was seeing on the forum that involved trying to get these targeted individuals to respond negatively to dogpiling so that they would get moderated themselves.  There was definitely a coordinated effort to cause trouble on the forum so when I saw behavior that matched what I had been alerted was happening, I moderated people accordingly.   

If you had the appearance of joining into the dogpiling or assumed a vigilante role in ridding the forum of what you thought were trolls, you probably got moderated.   Memberships in a secret group was merely coincidental.  People who felt they were unjustly moderated have privately contacted me and several issues quietly resolved.  The moderators of this forum do not publicly criticize or expose the names of moderated persons and members likewise should afford the moderators the same courtesy of taking issues they have with moderation to private communication.  But if someone went public with their ban/gag notice, that again had the appearance of manipulating the moderation to suit personal preferences and defy forum rules.  If this describes you, I think this is evidence that you and this forum are not a good fit and you should move along elsewhere.   

Others has come forward to specifically name the people directly involved in the troublemaking so as to clear others.  Those troublemaking people now identified have been banned outright.   I understand that less than 10% of the overall secret group were probable troublemakers but a few of that 10% assumed that being troll vigilantes was a good idea.  I believe that vigilante behavior got out of hand and also created more problems on the forum than the suspected "trolls".   The moderators' failure, if it can be called that, to remove suspected trolls was seen as "favoritism" when the reality is no evidence could be found that substantiated any claims of trolling.  We do not ban people from the forum for having unusual ideas or lifestyles or because you appear to have a personality clash with them.   

A few people were banned for engaging in behavior that was a serious threat to the operation of this site.  I'm not going into details as to how and what was done but the mods have been informed of the pertinent details.  Any complaint that they were banned with no warning is disingenuous. 

Another person was banned when it was discovered she was a repeat troll who has been banned before and keeps obsessively trying to get in and create trouble. 

And a few got banned for sending outrageously insulting, even threatening, PMs to mods defying me to ban them.  I did.  At least went public whining she was unfairly banned with no warning.   That kind of behavior reminds me of people who create a criminal situation so that the cops are forced to shot and kill them...death by cop.    They create a situation via PM that cannot be condoned, defy to be banned and when it occurs, don the victim mantle.  You aren't a very good fit for this forum either. 

Over the weekend I consulted with the administrators of other similarly large forums and was informed that I am far too open about the moderation and that none of them would ever entertain the kind of demands people feel they are entitled to have answered.  Most large forum admins simply do not allow discussions whatsoever about forum moderation.  Don't like it? Leave.  That is the operative approach by professional forum administrators and one we will adopt in its entirety. 

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