Why all the censorship in the forums?

Discussion in 'Site and Forum Feedback' started by the8thark, Mar 7, 2013.

  1. macrumors 68040

    the8thark

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2011
    #1
    All too often these days I am reading topics closed for moderation and cleanup. Topics with nothing wrong in them. Only people voicing their opinions. So my question is a short one. Why is there a need to edit/remove opinionated posts on these forums (that don't break any forum rules)?

    I'm just trying to understand why all this new found censorship is existing on the forums. I'm not for or against it. I have no official opinion on that one. I'm just trying to understand the reasoning behind why it's existing in the first place.
     
  2. macrumors P6

    dukebound85

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    #2
    It's because the posts are against forum rules, too off topic, or not contributing at all
     
  3. macrumors 68040

    MonkeySee....

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2010
    Location:
    UK
    #3
    Don't know about the Mods here but on a Spurs site I moderate on its good to get rid of anything off topic to help the thread flow.

    Also as a user there is nothing worse than to to click on a thread about "Macbooks" but for some reason everyone is talking about "unicorns".
     
  4. thread starter macrumors 68040

    the8thark

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2011
    #4
    This is true. But a lot of the time here it is not the case. Opinionated and other (but on topic) posts/topics are being moderated.
     
  5. macrumors P6

    dukebound85

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    #5
    How about providing some examples/links
     
  6. macrumors demi-god

    Shrink

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2011
    Location:
    New England, USA
    #6
    Too bad OP is not around (or has bailed). I'm interested in seeing the threads to which he/she refers, too.

    Most of the threads I've seen locked, or sent to the hinterlands, deserved it. I'm interested in seeing some threads that were edited that OP believes were OK.
     
  7. macrumors 68020

    Kissaragi

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2006
    #7
    Maybe we can start talking about unicorns and get this thread locked too?
     
  8. macrumors demi-god

    Shrink

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2011
    Location:
    New England, USA
    #8
    There's always one troublemaker in the crowd!:p

    :D
     
  9. Contributor

    Scepticalscribe

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2008
    Location:
    Kite flying
    #9
    No, we should start talking about those particular unicorns which have developed an inexplicable espresso habit.

    This could give rise to countless contributions which could explore the tendency of some unicorns in certain regions (and the underlying socio-economic cultural dimensions) to be prone to engaging in significant substance abuse.

    This, in turn, would lead to an in-depth analysis of why why some substances (espresso) may well be a lot less healthy for them than others (XO cognac, consumed by the bucket); we can examine their absurdly limited diet, bizarre mating rituals (I mean, in strict biological terms, just ask ourselves how ludicrous is it to put all of your biological energy into growing a massive horn, just to show that yours is bigger and better. Utterly without precedent). Of course, no such study would be complete without a section on the true delinquents and deviants of the unicorn universe......

    ......the ones who devote days of their horned lives to contribute to virtual threads on an online unicorn forum which discusses, in extraordinary detail, just exactly how to prepare your espresso, one, which, strange to relate, has a devoted and passionate readership........
     
  10. Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #10
    OP,
    Its not censorship, we are in no way stopping members from expressing themselves, provided they do so within the boundaries we've set in our guidelines and rules.

    If a number of members fail to do so within a thread, i.e., bickering/arguing that crosses the line then the moderation staff needs to step in. Frequently we will lock the thread, remove the offending posts and reopen. On a rare occasion we'll keep the thread locked as judgement call, as we feel that its better to keep locked otherwise the same problems that caused it to be locked will re-occur.
     
  11. Administrator

    annk

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2004
    Location:
    Somewhere over the rainbow
    #11
    What maflynn writes is true:

    When you see a thread closed for clean-up, clean-up has already started. So what you're seeing isn't the original thread; problems are already being removed. That's why it can seem to you that there aren't problems.
     
  12. thread starter macrumors 68040

    the8thark

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2011
    #12
    I realise this. I know topics only get locked if they want to stop further chat. A quick cleanup happens often without the topic being locked.

    I am still here. And as said above in my first quote here, impossible to show you topics with this issue as "you're seeing isn't the original thread" problems are already being removed". So you see my issue here. Hard to show you problems (or lack of any problems) if they are posts in question are removed already.

    I can say though one I was looking at was:
    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1553028
    And that post was locked, cleaned up (or censored) and reopened. I was reading that topic from soon after it was published on the site. So I could see the moderator actions taken there before and after the topic was locked (and reopened). Just one recent example. And before you go all "ah but the mods can do whatever they like" on me, I agree. If the mods want to close a topic, they can. I have no argument. No matter what the reason for it. Fair or not fair. I just want to know why is all. Why seemingly calm and fine posts are being moderated in such a way.
     
  13. macrumors Core

    iBlue

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2005
    Location:
    London, England
    #13
    Pro tip - if you don't want to leave then try not to let it bother you, because nothing you say or do will make any difference. Rules at MR get stricter, not looser.
     
  14. Moderator

    OllyW

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2005
    Location:
    The Black Country, England
    #14
    There was no "censorship" on that thread, just a clean up. A number of posts were breaking the rules (or were responding to the rule breaking posts) so they were deleted.
     
  15. balamw, Mar 8, 2013
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2013

    Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

    Joined:
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    Location:
    New England
    #15
    And yet some think in some areas we could and should do more: http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1553852

    How do we please everyone?

    FWIW the posts that were removed were brought to the attention of the staff by other users who apparently didn't think that all was "calm and fine" when we decided to take action. We took some time to discuss the situation and acted in the way that made the most sense to us given the information we had at hand.

    B
     
  16. macrumors 601

    Mr. Retrofire

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2010
    Location:
    www.emiliana.cl
    #16
    The forum has many members (≈ 800.000 at the moment). If only 10 % of these members publish one nonsense post in one year, then the MR forum would contain half a million nonsense posts in just ≈ 6 years. Do you want that!?

    Some mods have strange opinions. However, if you visit other IT-forums, then you know, that the distance between MR and censorship is equal to the distance between mother earth and the moon.

    ----------

    That's impossible. :D
     
  17. macrumors G3

    AppleScruff1

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2011
    #17
    I see that there was a post removed in my "What constitutes an insult" thread. It was a very candid post by another user, not me. Interesting.
     
  18. Moderator

    OllyW

    Staff Member

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    Oct 11, 2005
    Location:
    The Black Country, England
    #18
    Again, it's not censorship. Posts discussing specific moderation will get deleted if the poster has not waived their right to moderation privacy.

    Moderation FAQ
     
  19. AppleScruff1, Mar 12, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 30, 2013

    macrumors G3

    AppleScruff1

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2011
    #19
    Thank you for the reply. Now I think I understand why the post I am talking about did reference specific moderation, not moderation in general.

    I think that this statement from the forum rules makes it difficult for a user to question moderation or have their side of the story heard:

     
  20. Moderator

    OllyW

    Staff Member

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    The Black Country, England
    #20
    A few of my own moderation decisions have been overturned either by myself or by the team after review, so I know that's not the case.
     
  21. macrumors G3

    AppleScruff1

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2011
    #21
    Again, thank you for your reply. I find it helpful to hear input from the moderation side of things. I know that without moderation the forum would turn into chaos in no time at all.
     
  22. thread starter macrumors 68040

    the8thark

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2011
    #22
    I agree with this. Moderation is needed.

    I also agree with this.

    Under the current system it's tough to know for certain if this is the case on these forums. I agree that borderline cases can go either way. But I'm more concerned about the general trend here. And after reading this entire topic if very useful comments I think it's a case of the better of two evils. No moderation would equal a forum where in parts the chat would be very off topic. As self moderation on forums doesn't work when things go pear shaped. But on the other hand, if you have moderation (usually by a group of moderators) you will get all the offtopic and unsuitable chat removed. Also there will be borderline cases and the moderator's opinions (on what that they like/dislike) that will result in some wrong decisions.

    There is no perfect solution here. I think I was wishing for perfect moderators in my original post here. That can't and won't happen. Anywhere, not just on these forums. Yes I personally disagree with some of the moderating decisions of recent. (Silent moderation and announced moderation). For example posts removed before and after a topic temp closure.

    So I think all I want to say is I'm happy having the Mods here. And yes they do a good job. But they are not perfect. And still lots of room for improvement there.
     
  23. Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    New England
    #23
    MOD NOTE: We constantly wish for perfect users too that can behave as well mannered adults at all times, but then we wake up and realize that we are all human.

    Just like the users don't all agree about any particular topic, we mods don't always agree. This can lead to no moderation, delayed moderation, or moderation that is somewhat inconsistent with previous actions and overturning of previous actions in any given instance.

    We are human after all, and thus we will make mistakes.

    B
     
  24. thread starter macrumors 68040

    the8thark

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2011
    #24
    From another topic in the forum but it applies here. I just want to say this is one example of where the forum moderation can be improved. This (and other similar words) need to be added to the profanity filter. As they are obvious profanities.
     
  25. Moderator

    OllyW

    Staff Member

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    Location:
    The Black Country, England
    #25
    While bitch can be used as an insult I wouldn't class it as an obvious profanity.
     

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