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Old 07-28-04, 04:34 PM   #24
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Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Monroe, MI
Posts: 489
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Talking Re: Can we have a flame forum?

One question - you said you employed "Forum Nazi" rules on a flame-only forums? A forum nazi is someone who strictly abides by, or enforces the rules. A flame forum is a forum with little to no rules - I don't get it....maybe that's why your experience with flame forums didn't go over too well?
Two rules I didn't make were BBS wide directly from the Administrators. I couldn't change them even if I wanted to ...

(1) Room Aides (aka me) and Sysops (aka BBS Admins) could not be the target of Flames. Violations result in a 3-day kick for the Forum for the first offense, a week long kick for the second, and third offense results in "twitted" (aka BANNED from the BBS period).
(2) Room Aides and Sysops can not participate in Flames. Room Aides of the Flames forum who participate in Flaming are "twitted" - end of story. Sysops who Flame are replaced.
These two rules were a double-edged sword. On one hand, I couldn't be target of Flames but I couldn't engage in Flaming either. Fighting the later urge was awfully hard sometimes, I can assure you. On the surface, you might think these rules suck but in actuality, they're damn good and makes the Sysops job easier. They don't have to worry about "politics" being played against them and/or Room Aides developing "conflicts of interest" between guests, thus dragging the forum AND the BBS down as a whole. Before these two rules were instituted, the Sysops would be forced to replace the Room Aide every month or two and a Sysop every 3-6 months because of it. They were about to have a vote on deleting the forum and I came forward and said, "Don't delete the forum! Just institute rules where Sysops and RAs can not be the target of Flames or engage in Flaming period and hand the room over to me!" They did that very thing. When I changed the Room Info (the only area of the forum I was allowed to Flame but only by using generalizations), I added the following new rules ...

(3) If you don't have at least a 10th grade level in Writing & Language, don't bother. I would've extended this to include Spelling and Grammar but the Sysops say that's going a bit too far (Makes ya think, doesn't it? Especially after seeing the "Help" files, eh?!?) Anyway, I make this rule for your own good -- you'll need at least a 10th grade Writing & English comprehension level to follow the next rule ...

(4) Topical Flames shall consist of a mimimum of 2 paragraphs of 7 sentances or more. You want to Flame in my room? Then you'll have to put a hell of lot more thought and originality into your material than you intend to. Just because you cut-and-pasted the latest Dennis Miller tirade (with some artistic license, of course -- swapping some names around and yada, yada) or your one liner has an "F-bomb" or two doesn't make it a Flame. It's a piddly, weakassed insult that any 3rd grader can do. This is a college BBS so show us how well your parents' or taxpayers' money is being put towards that English major! Deal?

(5) No flaming another person's posting style or length of posts. Why? Because it's weakfished and always results in an endless circle-jerk of wussified flaming. If you don't have time to read, you don't have the tools in your attic to write. And you'll need all three of those tools -- reading, writing, and time -- to languish here!

(6) If you find your posts deleted or yourself kicked, you didn't follow the above rules. This is FLAMES -- not Romper Room! You can't expect to be the next Mike Royko or Rush Limbaugh with such unenlightening BS coming out of your keyboard. Bring your brain next time ...
The result? I got some Flames in my Mail from about two dozen users because my "Forum Nazi" rules forced them to actually think first before wasting their own and everyone else's time. They wanted a Forum where they can just say the usual responses (e.g "F--k you, noob" or "Your Mama etc.) back forth all day long and I wasn't gonna have it. I wanted to raise the quality bar -- seperate the s--t from the Shinola; the weak from the strong! The responses in the actual Flames Forum far outweighed all those Flames I got in my Mailbox, thus I consider the venture a success. Every night I logged in, I had over 90 posts to look over and the majority of them followed the rules. A few of those people would actually post "War & Peace" length manifestos that just dripped with the vilest invective known to man and yet contained a minimal use of expletives!

Now, that takes TALENT!

After that stint, I prefer TALENT in a Flames Forum -- not reactionary one-liners and dreck! However, those appreciable years of moderating a Flames Forum have burned me out on 'em and I feel that it's hard to re-create something that's simply not re-creatable. It's sorta like my pre-1989 pot-smoking days -- yeah, I miss 'em ... but not enough to warrant a toke after being clean for so long. I won't Moderate another Flames Forum -- been there, done that, it was a wild ride while it lasted!
[b][i]A man's ambition must be small,
To write his name on a s**t-house wall.[/b][/i]
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