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    is permanently banning members really necessary?
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    Senior Member ahalpert's Avatar
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    There have been a couple member bans recently that made me question if there isn't a way to maintain order on the forum that is less detrimental to the public good.

    First, someone made a political comment on the dji blacklist thread and then called the moderator a putz after his post was removed. i thought throwing insults at the mods was a bonehead move (ie biting the hand that feeds you), but it did seem like a misunderstanding based on what else he said. it seemed like he thought his post was being axed because of its specific politics instead of a general no-politics rule. meanwhile, all his other posts that i read had been intelligent and interesting. is the community really better off without him?

    And then just this week, john brawley got banned permanently for reasons unknown to me. john repeatedly violated the no-politics rule, but none of my fellow members whom I've consulted said they were offended by his rants even if they disagreed with him.

    John might have been the single most educational poster on this site for me and provided me with invaluable information, including by disabusing me of some technical misconceptions I had harbored for years.

    I don't know what he did to finally get banned and maybe he deserved it. But it sure seems like the forum is worse off without him and that we run the risk of losing him to a competitor. He's also working at a high level in TV drama and could be a valuable connection for anyone working in that segment of the industry.

    I know that dvxuser isn't a democracy and that rules have consequences. But isn't there another way to discipline rulebreakers that wouldn't deprive the community of what they have to offer? Wouldn't it be possible to simply ban them temporarily?

    To paraphrase John Donne, "If a clod be washed away by the sea, dvxuser is the less."

    Our industry is full of hotheads, so unwanted casualties seem inevitable on account of an angry lapse of judgement.

    In other words, if rules put in place to benefit the community instead diminish it, might they not require reform?

    What do you guys think? Am I off my rocker? Did they have it coming? Are we better off without them? Or are we worse off?
     

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    #2
    Senior Member Run&Gun's Avatar
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    In my opinion, JB is a great asset and resource on this forum. Like Charles (and others), who is working at a high level and comes here and freely shares knowledge, insight and great stories "on the inside", we are lucky to have them.

    Like you, Abe, I do not know what may have been said that may have led to his ban, but I vote to reinstate JB(if he was permanently banned and if he would want to come back).

    Hell, we've seen mods step over the line recently, too.
     

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    #3
    Senior Member Peter C.'s Avatar
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    I've seen other boards give two week bans. That's usually long enough cooling their heels. But don't worry he'll most likely be back under a new account. I don't feel that sympathetic because there are a lot of people who have difficulty acting respectful on the internet.
     

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    #4
    Senior Member ahalpert's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peter C. View Post
    I don't feel that sympathetic because there are a lot of people who have difficulty acting respectful on the internet.
    This is true, but I didn't think he was being a troll. And even if someone trolls me, I can always add them to my ignore list
     

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    #5
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    A few years ago on a sports forum, I was banned from a thread about a particular American soccer player because I said he wasn't ever going to be good enough for his billionaire owned club that could afford some big time stars. That peed me off and I soon quit that site after over 40,000 posts over a decade and a half. (I lurk now and again without signing in).

    And as a side note, the player whose future I questioned proved not to be good enough for the whole league and was just sold from a club in the Euro League ranked #2 to a club in the Euro League ranked #13.
     

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    #6
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    Maybe an escalating ban.

    1st time: 1-2 weeks
    2nd time: 1 month
    3rd time or more: 3 months (max)

    If a year elapses, then count resets (e.g., 2nd time in over a year would just be 1-2 weeks)

    A permanent ban is sometimes necessary. For example, I once saw a member say he wanted to kill another one.
     

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    Senior Member JPNola's Avatar
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    hell, from what I saw I deserve banning way before Brawley.
    Big sources matter.
     

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    #8
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    I've operated several email lists over the years and overseen a couple very active message boards. I currently only run one email list, but it has 4000 members. So I've had to deal with member issues and I have empathy for the moderators here. That list, btw, is on groups.io. It's a pretty flexible platform (though it's not all like the vBulletin system dvxuser runs on).

    It lets moderators place list members on moderation, one a moderator needs to approve any message the person tries to sends to the list.
    Or moderators can let members read posts, but not make any of their own. That's usually a short-term thing.

    Those two steps lets "problem" members still follow the list, but it requires actions by moderators to keep things running. And it usually results in back-channel discussions. It's kind of a pain all around. I try not to do that often, but sometimes it's needed.

    I think I've only banned a few people. One was a spammer harvesting email addresses. A couple others made ad hominem attacks on other list members.

    On thing that's helped with board-line cases (which is most), is factoring in how many positive contributions the person's made to the list. The more the person has participated in discussions —and that participation can include vigorous debate and disagreement—the more slack they get.

    So I might ask them to chill, maybe quietly place them on moderation for a bit (which requires me to deal with all their posts), or whatever. And then after a cooling-off period, I take them off moderation and they can freely post to the list.

    Anyway, the moderators here will figure out what's best. Good luck to them (and to John et al)
    ----------
    Jim Feeley
    POV Media
     

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    #9
    Senior Member Justin Kuhn's Avatar
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    Honestly it seems like politics are connected to the industry to varying degrees, sometimes more extensively than others and the no-politics rule stifles relevant discussion. Is it possible that this rule contributed to the prevalence of gear over content in DVXuser discussion and the overall decline of the site? Maybe my interests have changed as my life situation has changed but I know things used to be different and I don't think I'm the only person that feels this way, somewhat.

    Apologies for the (possibly off-base) rant.
     

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    #10
    Senior Member JPNola's Avatar
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    Yes. This.

    Many films are political films. A strict no politics rule would mean those films cannot be discussed.

    Diversity hiring is a political subject by definition. So if the powers do not want political content they should have nixed that topic from the start. Although, ironically, a reason one would not delete the topic is fear of being seen as politically incorrect in such an act. As if it indicates you are anti-diversity.

    Were it me I might use the measure of whether the poster is being political. Advocating for or against politicians or political ideology. As opposed to, say, mentioning political policy in discussion of COVID’s impact on the film and video industry.

    How you gonna discuss AB-5 legislation without bringing up politics?
    Big sources matter.
     

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