Author Topic: Venty, ranty, blow off the steam posts  (Read 63089 times)

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Drunken Housewife

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Re: Venty, ranty, blow off the steam posts
« Reply #75 on: September 19, 2009, 03:41:17 PM »
Aeris, I never got the impression from your posts that you were seeking attention instead of level-headed advice.  Some saga posters really milk the recurring person angle, with topic names like, 'YOU WON'T BELIEVE WHAT X DID NOW!  X STORY!!!"  and that seems gossipy, not advice-seeking. 

Sometimes the person in the recurring stories even seems tangential to the poster's life, like a friend-of-a-friend or a casual social acquaintance, which makes it all seem extra-gossipy that they are being built up into some big eHell character.  That is a big difference, IMHO,  from someone like Yarnspinner, who is stuck with the truly horrendous Stonecold in her daily life and needs advice and has continual, ongoing problems with that person. 

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Aeris

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Re: Venty, ranty, blow off the steam posts
« Reply #76 on: September 19, 2009, 04:17:45 PM »
Ahhh, I think I see what both of you are saying now. Saga posts have *the potential* to be playing up situation for entertainment value and gossip, rather than genuine frustrating problems that need level advice. I can certainly understand that.

Even though you are both saying you don't think this is so much a fault of mine, I think it's a useful thing for me to remember too -- I think it perhaps IS easy for me to slip into a gossipy frame of mind sometimes with Sunshine in particular... and I should also remember that if a story is just a gossipy complainfest about her, and not a situation where my mother or I really *need* advice, then perhaps it is best not to post it...

Thanks, guys, this is a very useful conversation I think.

Drunken Housewife

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Re: Venty, ranty, blow off the steam posts
« Reply #77 on: September 19, 2009, 04:50:29 PM »
This discussion has helped me clarify my own thinking (although since I'm not a mod, my thinking is not exactly authoritative or important  ;) ).  I think that sometimes there is someone who is in your daily life whom you can't escape, be it a tyrannical and capricious boss like Stonecold or a next door neighbor who always causes trouble for you, like Dresser Queen, and that person often creates new situations which you need help to navigate with good etiquette.  That leads to repeated posting about the person, which can be completely unobjectionable IMHO.

But sometimes the recurring character is tangential to the person's life, so it seems like reaching to keep writing about them (friend of a friend, social acquaintance, etc..).  Or it seems that the writing is exaggerated and it seems to be more about getting attention for the poster (especially if the topic headers are real attention-seeking, like "A NEW X STORY!!!").  For me the name given the recurring character is a clue about this:  some of the names seem really mean and gossipy, and that seems to go along with situations when the character is getting milked for eHell notoriety, IMHO. 

Bottom line:  There's a big difference between repeatedly having problems and needing level-headed advice about a difficult person in your life and gossiping cattily.  Is it advice or attention someone is looking for?  At least twice we discovered that the notorious serial character was fictional or grossly exaggerated (I can think of two posters who were banned; this does not refer to anyone still active here). 
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Shores

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Re: Venty, ranty, blow off the steam posts
« Reply #78 on: September 19, 2009, 05:44:25 PM »
It would be nice to have an official word on this, because the posters above me are much more lenient on the whole thing than I am. I think the vast majority of recurring characters are much more gossip than etiquette concerns. I believe that if the person posting is not A. a direct player in the story being related and B. looking for some advice or commiseration (in which case it would be in the "I need a hug" folder) then it's just fodder for the masses. A story about someone doing something rude in which the OP is not a player and/or there is no direct advice needed (and it is not in "I need a hug") feels like a rant/vent to me and much worth of being locked than someone actually asking a question or needing a hug who accidentally used the word "vent" in their title.
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Hanna

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Re: Venty, ranty, blow off the steam posts
« Reply #79 on: September 19, 2009, 06:08:36 PM »
Aeris I have always seen the etiquette question in your posts, and also believe that you and your mom often have taken advice from posters here at eHell, or at least gained some insight* that guided you when handling the situation.

I have seen other recurring characters, like Marina's DQ that simply give us good examples of how to handle a situation.  I think that is also worthwhile.  It helps others when they find themselves in a similar situation.

The other category seems to be just for entertainment purposes.  I suppose those could be moved to the Coffee Break folders.  Though I confess I don't really follow them, their presence here doesn't offend me in the least.

*Edited to correct funny typo.  Incite is definitely not what I meant!
« Last Edit: September 20, 2009, 10:15:43 AM by Hanna »

Bob Ducca

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Re: Venty, ranty, blow off the steam posts
« Reply #80 on: September 19, 2009, 06:22:47 PM »
Regarding the "sagas":

There are some of them (Roe's sister-in-law is the one I'm thinking of here, though Aeris' apply as well, as does Lotus') that continue because it is a genuine challenge: how does one remain polite to someone who is consistently inconsiderate and rude?  How does one become more assertive without sinking into rudeness?  Many of us deal with people like this in our lives, but for one reason or another, we don't post.  Etiquette isn't the same for every situation, and what may work with a stranger on the street or the cashier at a grocery store won't work for your sister-in-law.

So, I see nothing wrong with:

1. Here's what Person did, what can I do?
2. Person did it again, it didn't work, what else?
3. Person stopped doing that, but has started doing something else, please help?

I see brides starting multiple threads about one wedding, because there are so many issues.  Why can't there be multiple threads about one person ?  I agree, if it has gone into the realm of "pure" entertainment (no etiquette question, or nothing the OP can do), then the Coffee Break folder may be a good spot for those, but several are very instructive and, IMO, belong on the board.  Should eHelldame or the mods disagree, I will respect that, but I think there's a purpose for them.
« Last Edit: September 19, 2009, 08:57:11 PM by Mainstay »

cass2591

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Re: Venty, ranty, blow off the steam posts
« Reply #81 on: September 19, 2009, 06:49:35 PM »
Shores, since I don't own this forum I can't give the final word. However, until and unless an edict from Jeanne dictates one way or another, my advice is to just not read said posts/threads if they bother you that much.

Another alternative is that if you do read them and you feel it's basically a rant and nothing more, report it.
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jimithing

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Re: Venty, ranty, blow off the steam posts
« Reply #82 on: September 19, 2009, 08:22:45 PM »
I'm very hesitant to speak up in this debate, for what may be obvious reasons... I'll say right out that if sagas are considered against the forum rules, then I'll stop posting about my MIL and SIL - I will certainly abide by whatever the rules of the forum are.

But I'm not entirely sure I understand the problem. If the point is that *some* saga posts can potentially fall afoul of the pre-existing rule against vents/rants, then I can understand that. But surely the saga posts are no more guilty of that than others? It doesnt seem to be that it being part of a recurrent character is what would make it problematic (any more than it being part of a recurrent character saves it from being problematic).

I will point out that, a few times, I have thought my bias on my own recurrents was getting the best of me, and tried to post anonymously and mask the rel@tionships. I few times I got away with it, and got good discussion, and a few times I actually got called on the carpet by people, and pretty directly by at least one very senior/respected member of this board for being 'secretive' about who the post was really about. So then I worried that if the story did happen to be about Daisy, or Princess Sunshine, and I didn't say that at the beginning, I'd be doing something wrong.

I will admit though, that I do know that in the past there have been times when I've been in a hysterical mindframe regarding Princess Sunshine. People on this forum have been extremely helpful in helping me get my head straight when I feel like I'm really losing it about her, even telling me that I'm being way too involved, way to emotional, way too invested, and way too worried about her eventually happiness. I've been given numerous, EXTREMELY helpful, 'bobs on the nose', so to speak, that have really helped me realign my thought patterns to a high degree. It usually seems to follow a pattern of "Ack - SIL did amazing rude, hurtful thing and I'm LOSING MY MIND" "<BOP> Straighten up! Don't her have that power over you. Take the high road, be the adult here, and walk with your head held high." It *is* etiquette advice, because what I want to do is strangle her in front of 22 witness, but it's far more polite to smile faintly and bean dip.

I don't know... I would be very interested to see the mods and the Dame's take on this.

Aeris, I didn't feel that you were being secretive. But I did wonder if perhaps you weren't mentioning who it was to make things more dramatic. In that particular thread, many posters were giving advice, and then adding "wink, wink", as in "we all know who this is about", and I just didn't understand why not come out and say who is involved, when apparently, most of the board knew who it was about. Like I said in that thread, it felt like a game. And in fact, another poster said that they liked it because it made the story more entertaining, when I think that the topic was innately entertaining in itself. And I was getting distracted by all the "guess who we're talking about" debate, and couldn't see the etiquette issue at hand.

I enjoy your threads, and as others have said, you usually ask a genuine etiquette question, which is why I was confused with that thread.

Aeris

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Re: Venty, ranty, blow off the steam posts
« Reply #83 on: September 20, 2009, 01:30:31 AM »
I'm very hesitant to speak up in this debate, for what may be obvious reasons... I'll say right out that if sagas are considered against the forum rules, then I'll stop posting about my MIL and SIL - I will certainly abide by whatever the rules of the forum are.

But I'm not entirely sure I understand the problem. If the point is that *some* saga posts can potentially fall afoul of the pre-existing rule against vents/rants, then I can understand that. But surely the saga posts are no more guilty of that than others? It doesnt seem to be that it being part of a recurrent character is what would make it problematic (any more than it being part of a recurrent character saves it from being problematic).

I will point out that, a few times, I have thought my bias on my own recurrents was getting the best of me, and tried to post anonymously and mask the rel@tionships. I few times I got away with it, and got good discussion, and a few times I actually got called on the carpet by people, and pretty directly by at least one very senior/respected member of this board for being 'secretive' about who the post was really about. So then I worried that if the story did happen to be about Daisy, or Princess Sunshine, and I didn't say that at the beginning, I'd be doing something wrong.

I will admit though, that I do know that in the past there have been times when I've been in a hysterical mindframe regarding Princess Sunshine. People on this forum have been extremely helpful in helping me get my head straight when I feel like I'm really losing it about her, even telling me that I'm being way too involved, way to emotional, way too invested, and way too worried about her eventually happiness. I've been given numerous, EXTREMELY helpful, 'bobs on the nose', so to speak, that have really helped me realign my thought patterns to a high degree. It usually seems to follow a pattern of "Ack - SIL did amazing rude, hurtful thing and I'm LOSING MY MIND" "<BOP> Straighten up! Don't her have that power over you. Take the high road, be the adult here, and walk with your head held high." It *is* etiquette advice, because what I want to do is strangle her in front of 22 witness, but it's far more polite to smile faintly and bean dip.

I don't know... I would be very interested to see the mods and the Dame's take on this.

Aeris, I didn't feel that you were being secretive. But I did wonder if perhaps you weren't mentioning who it was to make things more dramatic. In that particular thread, many posters were giving advice, and then adding "wink, wink", as in "we all know who this is about", and I just didn't understand why not come out and say who is involved, when apparently, most of the board knew who it was about. Like I said in that thread, it felt like a game. And in fact, another poster said that they liked it because it made the story more entertaining, when I think that the topic was innately entertaining in itself. And I was getting distracted by all the "guess who we're talking about" debate, and couldn't see the etiquette issue at hand.

I enjoy your threads, and as others have said, you usually ask a genuine etiquette question, which is why I was confused with that thread.

Oh, I didn't take it maliciously Jimithing. In fact, it was probably my fault, because I didn't 'hide' it well enough, apparently, since a number of people did guess what was up. I have a number of threads about my SIL that don't name her, and the vast majority of those were never connected - I truly normally do it when I fear that my bias may affect my posting, and that the board bias too may trend the advice given. I just didn't do as good a job of it in that one as I have in others, apparently.

Sometimes I think it's valuable to do that, as there are occasions where the history may not helpfully inform the advice given - although the counter argument is that the most correct advice would be the most informed advice.... So I am a bit torn on what I should be doing....

Of course there are some situations that occur with her that just wouldn't make any sense without the backstory, so it would be pointless to try to hide the identity.

At any rate, I assure you that I didn't half-hide it just to increase the drama. It was just a failure on my part in that particular thread of attempting but not fully succeeding in shielding the identity of the characters.
« Last Edit: September 20, 2009, 01:40:13 AM by Aeris »

Evil Duckie

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Re: Venty, ranty, blow off the steam posts
« Reply #84 on: September 20, 2009, 02:35:21 PM »
.
« Last Edit: November 01, 2011, 04:25:04 PM by Evil Duckie »

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Re: Venty, ranty, blow off the steam posts
« Reply #85 on: September 20, 2009, 03:15:46 PM »
Evil Duckie, I do have to admit to getting a fair amount of entertainment from the BIL posts, but again, it is instructional. As is Felica's Princess Mom and many others. :D

But the best instruction also entertains! You can see a clear "arc" in your BIL posts that shows how someone progresses in dealing with a difficult person.

Hanna

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Re: Venty, ranty, blow off the steam posts
« Reply #86 on: September 21, 2009, 12:08:58 PM »
If posting more about BIL becomes against the forum rules I will stop posting them.
I would be sad enough about this to create a special fan club site just for stories about him.
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Flora Louise

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Re: Venty, ranty, blow off the steam posts
« Reply #87 on: October 08, 2009, 11:32:09 AM »
Honestly, I really can't stand the sagas. . . .

I wouldn't go that far. But, they often do make me long to hear the designated "villain's" version of the story.
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Prim_n_Proper

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Re: Venty, ranty, blow off the steam posts
« Reply #88 on: January 11, 2010, 01:16:02 PM »
There is a fine line between opening a topic of someone else's questionable behavior - discussing proper etiquette surrounding the situation versus turning it into a rant/vent. 

Sometimes it can be quite a challenge to rephrase your post addressing the topic to not sound like a rant, since if it was positive/appropriate behavior that we were talking about, we wouldn't bring it up in the first place. 

Also, if it's a negative behavior that has caused enough grief for the person to bother posting about it on an internet forum, you can count on some emotions of frustration to be reflected in that post.  Many would call that in itself, a rant. 

It would be very difficult for someone who has reached this point to take a step backward, view the situation from an observer point-of-view and to frame it in the form of an inquisitive, emotionless query.

How do you determine whether someone is ranting or simply bringing up an example of poor etiquette that they wish others to comment on?   Of course the comments solicited would hopefully be those in the nature of "I think a more acceptable/appropriate way of handling this situation would have been to ....".  However, being human, not all of us have the skill and self-restraint to address these topics in an academic fashion. 

This post by the way, is not a rant, but rather my respectful attempt to seek more information about what is allowed and what is not allowed here.


gollymolly2

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Re: Venty, ranty, blow off the steam posts
« Reply #89 on: January 11, 2010, 01:23:00 PM »
I think the dividing line is one of intent. Are you posting because something frustrating happened and you want an idea of how to deal with it (Either that exact situation, or a similar situation if it occurs again)? Or are you posting because something frustrating happened and you want to vent to everyone else about it?

I think one of the easiest ways to identify a vent or a rant is a post that identifies itself as a vent or rant. So if you're right on the thin line between a question and a rant, the mods will probably let you go, but if you end your post with "I just had to vent!", you're probably not going to get any leeway.