I was curious, of the CM staff, if you've banned specific posters for repeated violations of the posting rules. Some "regular" posters have disappeared and I realize many just move on to other boards, but have there been some "black listed?"
We don't maintain a list of "black-listed" postors, and frankly the only ones we have ever barred are people who post profane messages or obvious spammish solicitations.
Personally, I don't think it is appropriate to bar anyone for any other reason. We set up the chit-chat message board for off-topic (non-cruising) posts and the vast majority of people follow our lead. If someone continually posted messages that had nothing to do with cruising to a cruise-related board we would probably send them a reminder of the board's topic, but to my knowledge that has never been done.
It sounds like you are referring to "message-board cliques" which is a concept I personally eschew. I believe these boards are here to exchange information. Sometimes I get to know a postor's online personae and we have fun communicating, but I am not here to exchange glib, non-cruising banter. I am here to help other cruise enthusiasts by sharing information and relating my impressions of my personal cruise experiences.
I watch the back and forth barbs that go on about the clique on one message board over another with bemused detachment. If someone decides to get upset about something someone says here and then gets upset with me because I won't come to the rescue I always just try my best to explain to them that message boards are for the most part anonymous and that everything that is said here should be considered in the light of the medium. These are not real world relationships, they are messages posted by strangers (for the most part) under the veiled anonymity of an electronic screen. Most of them are very nice people but even nice people when protected behind the electronic veil will often say things that they wouldn't say to someone's face.
Equally important is the potential for misunderstanding of text messages because of the lack of voice inflection and visual cues (smiles, grins) that normal conversation include. I often see people getting personally insulted by what to me are obviously innocent attempts at humor and I also see people judging and excoriating other people according to standards that should be left up to the individual. I personally think it is better to focus your personal feelings on people you know in real life and not to get emotionally involved in message board relationships.
I believe in the reasoning abilities of adults. We invite people to come here for the exchange of information in a friendly setting and we expect them to keep the conversation civil. 99.99% of the time we never have a problem.
I am the editor, but I also speculate, ask questions and play devil's advocate. I reserve the right to change my mind.
Whewwwwwwww........................if silence is golden you just went broke!! Your post was a lot of reading for a simple "a few for profanity and spam."
Just kidding..........just kidding...........get away from the delete key <grin>
I completely agree with you. One of the problems with electronic communication is the absence of voice inflections. One can say something in person in a manner which can not be misinterpreted as sarcasm but on a message board might come across as a personal insult.
Nobody has been banned. people come and go all the time and hopefully the return as many have done at one time or another. The only reason anyone will have their post deleted and maybe a word of warning from me is if, as Paul said, one engages in profanity, threats, personal attacks, blantant advertising, or post that we know are false in nature or we think could result in legal action against either the poster or Cruisemates. It isn't often that we really have to delete anything and we try and err towards the benefit of the poster, but there is always the occasional spam that need deleting.
Community Staff Leader