Author Topic: How do you feel about OT posts?  (Read 13586 times)

Offline LauraGigs

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Re: How do you feel about OT posts?
« Reply #30 on: January 09, 2008, 08:34:50 pm »
OT posts have ruined some good threads lately, which upsets me.  (One case in point: http://bettermost.net/forum/index.php/topic,15185.0/all.html

This didn't seem to be a problem until recently.  Some Bettermost users may be entirely new to message boards, and thus unfamiliar with the basic etiquette.  But when just about every recent substantive thread on the film/book wanders to subjects such as gay-bashing, violent crime statistics in Australia, etc. it kind of grates. 

Well-meaning folks who address OT posts/questions wind up adding to the problem; that's how a whole thread gets derailed. In other words, the best way (for non-mods) to handle an OT post is to ignore it.


(An exception to all this may be the Current Event threads, which lend themselves more to diverse discussion. For example, a thread about the elections may naturally involve posts about the media, political history, one's personal philosophies, one's local political environment, etc.)
« Last Edit: January 12, 2008, 02:36:13 pm by LauraGigs »

Offline delalluvia

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Re: How do you feel about OT posts?
« Reply #31 on: January 09, 2008, 08:49:06 pm »
I am a regular at another forum called 'Rotten Tomatoes' and they have a rule against what they call 'Thread hijacking.'  If a discussion lends itself to meandering - like 'Heath Heath Heath' which is all about Heath no matter what it is - then the discussion is going to range widely.  However, if the discussion is about a particular political matter in Current Events and someone chimes in with a completely unrelated topic which derails the point that was under discussion, then that is a hijack - an interruption that may very well be intended to stop discussion or debate and make the topic fall apart as a result.  It depends a LOT on the topic - and I do think that the current events area should remain more focused than say the fan discussion or the blogs or other places.


Agree.  On another board I go to, to keep a semblance of continuity, if a thread goes too OT, the mods get a consensus amongst themselves before making a decision on whether to start slapping wrists, that way there can be no accusations of favoritism or lack thereof.

Now they also send PMs to warn those offenders.  And some boards I go to will ban someone for a specified number of days after so many warnings if they do not cease and desist.

What does BM plan on doing to enforce such rules if someone simply refuses to believe they're OT and keeps going after it? 

Offline serious crayons

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Re: How do you feel about OT posts?
« Reply #32 on: January 09, 2008, 09:53:42 pm »
99.9% of our bloggers welcome visitors to post on their threads...so feel free to stop by and visit anyone.

Well, even I didn't mean to suggest that people shouldn't visit or post at all on blogs. I just meant I thought perhaps they shouldn't go on to a whole different subject than the blogger him/herself was discussing, or make it into a thread that's all about me instead of all about the blogger. But I hereby officially withdraw the suggestion that blogs can't go OT.

Just to get things rolling:

"You are encouraged to stay on topic, or to confine your comments to topics closely related to the original topic."

Again, I just throw that out as a starting point.

I think we don't want to ask our Moderators to turn themselves into police officers, or to expect them to allow their Moderator duties to take over their lives, but I also think they must be left with some leeway to deal with situations as they arise. I don't think we should try to make this an exact science or something automatic, because it isn't.

Ver' good.

-rules can sometimes be a tough word...

How about guidelines?

Quote
-Maybe the true topic oriented threads (forums?) could have some sort of announcement at the beginning - please try to be focused, if it comes to moderator's attention that thread is wandering, don't be offended if you get asked to get back on track.

I like this.


Agree.  On another board I go to, to keep a semblance of continuity, if a thread goes too OT, the mods get a consensus amongst themselves before making a decision on whether to start slapping wrists, that way there can be no accusations of favoritism or lack thereof.

Now they also send PMs to warn those offenders.  And some boards I go to will ban someone for a specified number of days after so many warnings if they do not cease and desist.

What does BM plan on doing to enforce such rules if someone simply refuses to believe they're OT and keeps going after it? 

I doubt there's nothin we can do. (  ;D Kidding -- sorry, I just couldn't resist the opportunity to use a Brokieism.) But actually, I doubt there would be any form of punishment, even wrist-slapping. I think it might be something more along the lines of, the moderators post a polite reminder on the board. If it gets really carried away, they might PM the members and/or move the posts to a new thread. Just winging it here, it's not up to me to decide, but this has been the procedure in the past.



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Re: How do you feel about OT posts?
« Reply #33 on: January 09, 2008, 10:25:34 pm »
Well, even I didn't mean to suggest that people shouldn't visit or post at all on blogs. I just meant I thought perhaps they shouldn't go on to a whole different subject than the blogger him/herself was discussing, or make it into a thread that's all about me instead of all about the blogger. But I hereby officially withdraw the suggestion that blogs can't go OT.



I was just reassuring Bel Air, Katherine I do understand and agree with YOUR point too...*Jess ducking back out of the way*

Offline Jeff Wrangler

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Re: How do you feel about OT posts?
« Reply #34 on: January 09, 2008, 11:05:08 pm »
Well-meaning folks who address OT posts/questions wind up adding to the problem; that's how a whole thread gets derailed. In other words, the best way (for non-mods) to handle an OT post is to ignore it.

You can say that twice and mean it!

How about guidelines?

"Guidelines" is a good word: "We ask you to please observe these guidelines."  :)
"It is required of every man that the spirit within him should walk abroad among his fellow-men, and travel far and wide."--Charles Dickens.

Offline Wishes

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Re: How do you feel about OT posts?
« Reply #35 on: January 10, 2008, 01:09:54 am »
I voted that some are OK while others, because of their subject matter are irksome.

I voted this because I have seen OT subjects become just a conversation between two or three select people and any posts put in by others are completely ignored. I have seen this on other boards, I don't mean necessarily here. It is irritating and kind of isolating.

Offline souxi

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Re: How do you feel about OT posts?
« Reply #36 on: January 10, 2008, 06:18:42 am »

Agree.  On another board I go to, to keep a semblance of continuity, if a thread goes too OT, the mods get a consensus amongst themselves before making a decision on whether to start slapping wrists, that way there can be no accusations of favoritism or lack thereof.

Now they also send PMs to warn those offenders.  And some boards I go to will ban someone for a specified number of days after so many warnings if they do not cease and desist.

What does BM plan on doing to enforce such rules if someone simply refuses to believe they're OT and keeps going after it? 

I completly agree with you. Wether you like it or not, life is full of rules. You have to have some kind of rules/guidelines for message boards. When people repeatedly go off topic, it,s just plain bloody annoying. There,s nothing worse than having to wade through posts that have nothing to do with the original topic, to get to the point of the topic in the first place. Sometimes off topic posts can even start rows, and that really isn,t the point of BM is it? I,ll probably get shot for saying this, but I,m used to it... ;)  if you don,t like it, don,t post. Rules is rules, and we all have to abide by them wether we like it or not. We are all over 18 arn,t we? I,m sure we can cope. ;)
*lines up on wall and waits to be shot*  ;) :laugh:

Offline Kerry

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Re: How do you feel about OT posts?
« Reply #37 on: January 10, 2008, 08:11:23 am »
When I enter a particular thread here at BetterMost, I imagine I'm entering a party, full to the brim with fascinating, exciting, exotic, interesting people, all of whom have a similar (though not identical) life philosophy as my own and are out on the town for a good time, to meet like minded people and engage in lively conversation.  :D

Imagine if one was rigidly instructed on entering such a party room that one could only speak about one particular topic and that if you strayed off topic, you would be bullied and harassed by the other party-goers and possibly even thrown out of the party by the host. Crikey!  :o

Having said all that, however, I do concede that no-one likes an obnoxiously opinionated, loud-mouth, barge-arse, on or off topic. Sometimes such people are unaware how excessively forceful they're appearing ( they may be discussing something they genuinely feel very strongly about) and need to be reminded to modify their behaviour and engage in a polite and respectful manner. On such occasions, I believe it is appropriate for the moderator to send a polite PM to the offending person (never a public reprimand). This should only be done as a last resort, however, and only acting upon a complaint. Oops, did I just go off topic?!  ???   ;)   ::)   :D
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Offline Lynne

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Re: How do you feel about OT posts?
« Reply #38 on: January 10, 2008, 09:05:39 am »
*lines up on wall and waits to be shot*  ;) :laugh:

I am reasonably certain there will be no shooting...there'd be too much dumb-ass missing.  ::) :laugh: :laugh:
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Offline underdown

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Re: How do you feel about OT posts?
« Reply #39 on: January 10, 2008, 09:22:02 am »
I have been slapped on the wrist, and have apologised. But I do apologise again, particularly on the points raised by LauraGigs. I was new to TOTW, and did stray 'off-topic'.
My undertanding was that BetterMost encouraged people to think about how BBM affected them, so naturally thought that TOTW was a means of raising different issues to promote discussion and reflection, in the spirit of a 'catalyst for positive change'. I also went a little further off topic than that should allow.
If TOTW is intended solely to disect the movie, then I would probably have had my fill of a weekly topic by week three.

If someone (anyone) had merely posted the few words 'Please stay on topic. We ask you to please observe the guidelines', I would have known that the thread had strict rules and I would not have not strayed further.

I did vote the way most people did. I also agree that there are better threads in which to discuss life issues stimulated by BBM.

'Crikey' is right, Kerry.

Rob  :)