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Posting to engage rather than preach


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Old 11th August 2004, 1:11 PM   #1
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Exclamation Posting to engage rather than preach

Hi everyone,

Lately the moderation team has received many complaints from various members and guests, regarding posts in discussion threads that some find offensive, even though they do not contain what this site defines as "personal attacks." What people seem to find objectionable in such reported posts is a perception that the poster seeks only to berate others, not to engage them in genuine, meaningful discourse about a given issue. Some forums are more prone to this problem than others – it’s a frequent occurrence in the threads pertaining to Other Men/Other Women, for example – but it crops up across the spectrum of discussion topics. We moderators are often at a loss as to how to respond to such complaints, because the problematic posts often do not contain content that has been explicitly prohibited in the LoveShack.org user guidelines. Rather, the complaints regard a poster's style or perceived attitude towards others. LoveShack.org moderators prefer to censor/edit posts as little as possible, as we seek to allow members to express their opinions freely, with minimal interference from us.

The simplest solution is to ignore someone whom you feel isn’t interested in listening to what you or anyone else has to say – even if they direct their comments at you. No one can force you to respond. Reply only to the posts you find to be helpful/meaningful/interesting -- i.e., worth responding to. Posting a reply simply to disparage another member only injects hostility into a thread.

I would also like to suggest, to all members and guests, that you consider whether you are posting in order to explore an issue that you have some questions about, and about which you would like to get insight from other people, or if you are simply posting a manifesto/rant and are actually uninterested in hearing other views. We do have a “Rants” section in the off-topic area, so there is a space for such posts on this site. But if you’ve shared your view on a subject and other posters don’t appear to agree, you must decide if continuing to post in that thread will serve to further the discussion, or if it will merely allow you to have the last word.

I’d like to remind everyone of LoveShack.org’s User Guidelines, which can be found here: http://www.loveshack.org/forums/guidelines/. Of particular salience to this issue is the following:
Quote:
We expect that all participants will respond to posts in their specific context, not to the person who has posted. While opinions may be formed of various members based on what they have posted in the past, any response to any particular submission should be grounded in what has been posted in that thread. Past disagreements should not be resurrected in new threads. It is important that criticism be directed at what is stated in a post ("I don't like your idea") rather than at the individual making the statement ("I don't like you").
As ever, when you encounter a post or other communication from another member that you feel is inappropriate, please report it to the site administrators. Please do not hesitate to do this – even if the moderators decide that editing or other action is not warranted, we appreciate the heads up. It’s helpful for us to know the problems members perceive.

Thank you for your cooperation.

midori
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Old 16th August 2004, 10:26 AM   #2
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I think it's a fine line between insulting someone and giving them the hard line that they might need to hear to help them put their issue in perspective. This forum is by nature, though perhaps not by definition, focused on the darker side of the human condition, and people are going to hear things they don't like.

Some people are going to take a very moralistic stance on some matters, and will respond in a suitable manner. Does the fact that they take a hard line on the subject make their opinions wrong? Nope...who's to say.

I think the watchword is empathy. If you cannot identify with someone's problems, then you aren't qualified to comment on them. Simple as that.
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Old 20th August 2004, 4:37 PM   #3
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Hey hey :)

Welll..... that's not how it works, though. Everyone, whether informed or not, will state their opinion invariably. For example, CapitalD's rape thread. Or, the current slavery thread.
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Old 6th October 2004, 4:11 PM   #4
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I think we need to bump this up again. Please read Midori's opening post.

Please remember that just because you may find something offensive, it does not necessarily mean it is against the guidelines for posting. It is possible to state your opinion without making a target out of another member.


What people seem to find objectionable in such reported posts is a perception that the poster seeks only to berate others, not to engage them in genuine, meaningful discourse about a given issue.

LoveShack.org moderators prefer to censor/edit posts as little as possible, as we seek to allow members to express their opinions freely, with minimal interference from us.
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Old 6th October 2004, 4:27 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally posted by Papillon
Some people are going to take a very moralistic stance on some matters, and will respond in a suitable manner. Does the fact that they take a hard line on the subject make their opinions wrong? Nope...who's to say.
The "right" or "wrong" of an opinion is not at question. Opinions can be stated clearly without resorting to abusive behavior, such as inserting an inappropriate LOL or HA HA, or attempting to demean someone. It's been done on LS before. I know, I've seen it.
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Old 6th October 2004, 4:30 PM   #6
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Where is this stemming from now??
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Old 6th October 2004, 4:32 PM   #7
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bad attitudes in general?
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Old 6th October 2004, 4:42 PM   #8
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I guess I don't understand why someone would get mad and "report" a response..
on a thread of someone asking advice or opinions on things....come on if you're going to post a thread about something you're not sure u should be doing then get upset when someone has some other opinion on what you should be doing, be it from a moral or social, ect stand point why get upset???

Why post this at all, people need to not take general advice so personal or else why waste people's time posting on here?
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Old 6th October 2004, 4:58 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by Barby
I guess I don't understand why someone would get mad and "report" a response..
on a thread of someone asking advice or opinions on things....come on if you're going to post a thread about something you're not sure u should be doing then get upset when someone has some other opinion on what you should be doing, be it from a moral or social, ect stand point why get upset???

Why post this at all, people need to not take general advice so personal or else why waste people's time posting on here?
Barby, sometimes we receive complaints from people who do not like how others post overall, not just a single thread or response. There are several threads floating around with posts that are rude and offensive to some, but not in direct violation of our guidelines. This was just a refresher for everyone and I bumped it up because I thought it was an excellent post.

I will not cite examples or name individuals because the truly abusive posts have, or are, being deleted or edited. Some posts will remain even though they may appear to be rude or offensive to some.
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Old 6th October 2004, 5:04 PM   #10
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Well I tend to think that all these types of posts are aimed at me though I KNOW they aren't...however I do hope if one of my posts or responses are complained about I would hope someone would have the decency to tell me in private or even on the thread that they were going to 'report' me or that they were offended.....

and if something is inappropriate then I hope that a mod PM's me to let me know....
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Old 6th October 2004, 6:25 PM   #11
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Barby:
Quote:
I guess I don't understand why someone would get mad and "report" a response..
I'm sure you're not the only one, Barby. As someone who occasionally reports posts I'll attempt to explain:

I report posts when I feel that someone is being unnecessarily hurt by fellow LS members. It doesn't happen often. I've never reported one of yours, Barby.

Some are more sensitive, or insensitive than others. Wouldn't life be boring if we were all the same? No-one is deliberately cruel on purpose, unless they are a troll! All are here to help and do so most of the time, yet some also regularly offend others. I think that those that have their posts frequently edited should ask themselves if they are disparaging the person or their views; if they sometimes post to preach, rather than engage.

We all deserve a modicum of respect from each other. General advice is fine but sometimes the response is an attack on someone's personality, intellectual capacity or morality. That's a different matter entirely. We ask for or give advice, we do not invite a mugging. The words of strangers should not hurt but, for some of us, they can. This should come as no surprise. The whole point of the site is that those that seek advice are open to influence from the views of people they don't know.

For me it is all about the way things are said, rather than whether we challenge or not. As Papillon says, the watchword is empathy. Given that, I think this is the most important thing to remember:
Quote:
It is important that criticism be directed at what is stated in a post ("I don't like your idea") rather than at the individual making the statement ("I don't like you").
I've never reported a post directed at me, but I have reported posts where I feel someone has been treated in an unfair or cruel manner. Sometimes I say something on the thread, sometimes I don't. If I think the person will be receptive to a personal intervention then I go for it. If I think it will end up in an argument on the thread, I don't. I don't like reporting posts, I don't like conflict but more than this, I don't like people being treated with a lack of respect, especially when I can see it hurts them.
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Old 6th October 2004, 7:28 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally posted by Barby
Well I tend to think that all these types of posts are aimed at me though I KNOW they aren't...however I do hope if one of my posts or responses are complained about I would hope someone would have the decency to tell me in private or even on the thread that they were going to 'report' me or that they were offended.....

and if something is inappropriate then I hope that a mod PM's me to let me know....

Silly girl! (I mean that in a nice way, not mocking or bashing) I've seen a lot of your posts and I don't recall any that would fit the description of someone who was posting to engage rather than to preach. You state your opinions without putting others down.
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Old 5th May 2005, 10:38 PM   #13
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IMHO, people often mistake disagreement with opinions with 'attacks' on them. The two are very different. Someone can hate hate HATE what I have to say and tear it to pieces and it's no skin off my nose - and hopefully it oughtn't be off anybody else's either. It's one thing to disagree with ideas and quite another to attack someone personally.
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Old 5th May 2005, 10:40 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally posted by moimeme
IMHO, people often mistake disagreement with opinions with 'attacks' on them. The two are very different. Someone can hate hate HATE what I have to say and tear it to pieces and it's no skin off my nose - and hopefully it oughtn't be off anybody else's either. It's one thing to disagree with ideas and quite another to attack someone personally.
I agree.
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Old 6th May 2005, 1:54 AM   #15
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I don't understand why some posts are deleted to be honest but I guess to some people they might seem offensive. I am a hard person to offend though, I really don't take much offense to anything so maybe I am not the person to be saying this.

I do think there are a few people who do attack KMT though. She is one of the people that I have noticed being attacked more so than others.

I have personally never reported a post. I don't see how some people can be so hurt/offended just by someone's opinion on a message board.

I also do not understand why posts complimenting people or telling them they are good looking are deleted. I have noticed this and I was thinking -

Are we also not allowed to flirt with other members or comment about their appearance in a good way? I was just wondering....sometimes these kinds of posts are deleted and sometimes they aren't.
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