DigitalSpy heavy handed moderation

james2001
Posts: 503
Joined: Sat 04 Jun, 2005 23.10

Fri 23 Feb, 2007 21.19

I don't usually post here, but I need to get something off my chest.

I've just recieved a 48 hour ban on DS for standing up to a troll who was out to cause trouble, he got nothing. In the past I've got some warnings, and a 48 hour ban last year, all for pathetically minor things. DS wasn't always like this, it's only the last year or so the mods have started to get like this, and you see banned members all over the place. You find yourself checking every post in case you get a warning or a ban for something pitifully minor.

And if you post in the forums trying to ask the mods questions, or critisising decisions, the thread either gets closed and you're told to "use forum support" or the thread is deleted and the OP (and anyone else who dares critisise) is likely banned. Only last week a thread with people asking what similar message boards were about got closed by the mods.

It wasn't always like this, over the first couple of years DS was online there was a "site news and suggestions" forum that was precisely there for people to post such comments and critisisms, and the mods responded to most questions and concerns. And the petty things you can get banned for now were no problem back then. Now you see people getting banned left right and centre, and you can't even see any real reason why.

I want to know what's bought about this heavy handed approach to moderation on DS, and the "you can't critisise us" attitide?
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marksi
Posts: 1892
Joined: Wed 07 Jan, 2004 05.38
Location: Donaghadee

Fri 23 Feb, 2007 21.47

If you think it didn't used to be like that, you don't remember a "moderator" called Beth Hart...
james2001
Posts: 503
Joined: Sat 04 Jun, 2005 23.10

Fri 23 Feb, 2007 21.58

I'm going back even further than Beth- 2000/2001 ish. I beleive the mods back in those days were Neil, Jose & James along with Sathelp who modded the Satellite forums and, I think, Chris did the Cable ones (funny how we knew who all the mods/admins were back then). The site's pretty much unrecognisable now from back then.
James H
Posts: 1289
Joined: Tue 20 Jul, 2004 14.49
Location: In your endo

Fri 23 Feb, 2007 22.13

That's what you get on a site with 143 million members or something
Jovis
Posts: 1448
Joined: Fri 25 Aug, 2006 20.08

Fri 23 Feb, 2007 23.20

There's so many members that when you post a reply, there's two more pages on a thread than when you started writing it.
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Luke-H
Posts: 153
Joined: Sat 18 Jun, 2005 12.21
Location: Selby - N. Yorks

Sat 24 Feb, 2007 13.15

marksi wrote:If you think it didn't used to be like that, you don't remember a "moderator" called Beth Hart...
Ah, Beth. It was a great day when she left.
russnet
Posts: 278
Joined: Tue 09 Sep, 2003 09.32
Location: Milton Keynes

Sat 24 Feb, 2007 13.55

I'm afraid she still posts now and again. Luckily without her moderator midas touch.

I've done a quick search and she has posted today on the forum in the General Discussions/Ever had a car crash thread.
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cwathen
Posts: 1117
Joined: Fri 15 Aug, 2003 17.28

Sun 25 Feb, 2007 10.09

Heavy handed moderation on DS is nothing new. I posted there for a brief while a couple or three years ago and eventually just gave up on it.

Apart from the fact that little sensible discussion takes place (or it didn't on the DTT forum anyway) because it is racked full of trolls, you also couldn't criticise them without heavy handed sanctions from the moderators, who in the main I saw as nothing more than power freaks who appeared to consider moderating an internet forum as a parallel to being a judge or magistrate. In addition, the moderation was *so* active that I wonder if they did anything else with their life than read the forums all day (sorry Beth, but I'm looking at you hun).

The 'debate' surrounding the Top Up TV launch in 2004 was a joke over there (and it was your watch again Beth). All it was was various trolls who had not done the slightest bit of research ranting about what a disgrace it was whilst those trying to argue back more sensibly were constantly slapped down by the moderators for hurting the little tikes' feelings who then came back with more of the same rubbish.

And of course, because of the ridiculous 'you can't discuss the forum on the forum' rule, any attempt, no matter how constructive, to make this point would be met with the same gestapo like moderation.

Annoyingly though, DS still seems to be positioned as the 'official voice of the geeks' forum which *always* get quoted by the media.
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marksi
Posts: 1892
Joined: Wed 07 Jan, 2004 05.38
Location: Donaghadee

Sun 25 Feb, 2007 10.40

An example of this, from yesterday:

http://www.digitalspy.co.uk/forums/show ... p?t=542202

This has happened a number of times with regard to the same subject - a number of people on the losing side of the debate complain about the thread and it is then removed. Any further threads asking why it was closed or who asked it to be closed are immediately closed themselves.

I once got a warning for lightly criticising a number of entirely inconsequential new threads all created by the same person. It was blindingly obvious trolling, but the "moderators" decided I was the one in the wrong.

If you're very bored, have a search for all posts by tedpitman and see what comes up. Incidentally, all the thread you find are created by him - he takes no further part in any thread he creates other than the initial post.
james2001
Posts: 503
Joined: Sat 04 Jun, 2005 23.10

Sun 25 Feb, 2007 14.03

I actually got a warning a few weeks back for "posting off topic". God knows why that is considered serious enough for a warning from the mods- but it explains why there's so many banned members. I don't know who the mods are who are carrying out these sort of decisions (seeing as they never reveal their identities, but use the generic "DS Moderation Team" account) but they've clearly let the power go to their heads and will jump down on people for the most insignificant things- and you're not even allowed to critisise. And I personally think the closing last week of the "what message boards are there similar to DS" thread last week is pathetic (a far shot from the days there was actually a forum where people were allowed to freely post links to such sites). Why can't people discuss similar websites- are they scared of people jumping ship or something?

Then you have the likes of TV Forum where the moderation is lax, and the place is crawling with kids & trolls, especially in the mock forum. There needs to be a balance somewhere. Personally, I feel that DS in the pre-Beth Hart days got it right, but the balance was tipped from that point onwards.

Personally, I think if a member's being an idiot, why can't you confront them on the forums without being banned- why should you direct your grief to "Forum Support", who will most likely do nothing?
all new Phil
Posts: 1540
Joined: Sun 13 Feb, 2005 00.04
Location: Next door to Hell

Sun 25 Feb, 2007 19.35

Who cares? It's a pissin internet forum. Don't let it get you down.
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