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FAQ about moderation of this site

1. how far do the moderators make their own decision to moderate someone?

Small scale stuff – keeping a thread on topic, or cooling things down if the discussion gets heated, is usually done by any member of the moderation team without asking the others.

Anything bigger – from hiding a post that the mod thinks is offensive, to banning someone – is discussed by the whole moderation team. Mostly, the team will all agree, though sometimes it’s a majority decision. As lead moderator, Pomona always gets the casting vote, and as site administrator, deebs has final say should no agreement be reached amongst the moderating team.

2. what sorts of moderation take place here?

We try to keep it as light as possible. When we do act, it’s mainly behind the scenes. So we engage with the member by PM, to explain what we’re doing and why. That’s why you’ll not see most of the moderation that actually goes on.

3. How do people react to being moderated?

A lot of folk don’t like being moderated, so sometimes feelings boil over into the threads, or someone’s blogs. Unfortunately, when this happens it’s not merely half the story (in our experience) but it’s often a highly coloured viewpoint that may miss out a few essential facts. Or even be a pack of lies. On the whole, as the moderators don’t tell other members what has passed between them and a person being moderated, it’s best to view anything said about a person’s experiences of being moderated with an amount of skepticism.

4. what sort of things do people say to moderators if they complain about being moderated?

Usually, that they’re being picked on, while other folk are allowed to get away with murder. There’s a lot of accusation of moderators having favorites. It’s sour grapes – we don’t have favorites. Just because you don’t see someone else being moderated, doesn’t mean they haven’t been.

5. what do I do if I disagree with a moderator’s action?

Send a mod your complaint. We’ll discuss it between ourselves and one of the moderators will give you a response. You’re free to respond to the response. If you remain dissatisfied, you can PM the lead moderator (Pomona) or site administrator (deebs).

Eventually, if we feel you’re whingeing without good cause, we’ll tell you that that’s the end of the matter.

6. what don’t I do if I disagree with a moderator’s action?

Argue publicly against it, either within a thread or via a blog. We view that very dimly indeed. We regard it as trolling and you may be asked to leave the site. Or, if you continue despite being warned, you could be ejected.

7. do moderators have feelings?

Yep. And we don’t like being sniped at any more than anyone else. Please don’t do it. We keep the peace for everyone’s benefit. Don’t make it harder for us. We do actually have lives beyond the forum and prefer to keep the moderation to a minimum.

8. how do I know whether a moderator is posting as a moderator, rather than expressing a personal opinion in a thread like any other member?

When we talk as a mod, we usually colour the text red. So you’ll know.

9. What do I do if I think someone else is behaving badly, or is taking pot shots at me, or has broken the rules?

Report them to a moderator. Don’t, please, have a go at them yourself. Especially not in public. And remember not to act as a moderator to a post someone else has made – leave the moderation to us.

Originally Posted by Moonhunter 07 September 2009, updated by deebs 29 May 2011

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