Your thoughts on Trolling

Discussion in 'SatelliteGuys Support Center' started by Scott Greczkowski, Feb 4, 2015.

?

Should we take action against members "Trolling"

Poll closed Feb 11, 2015.
  1. Yes - Warn them then ban them.

    11 vote(s)
    27.5%
  2. Yes - Warn them then ban them from the thread

    10 vote(s)
    25.0%
  3. Yes - Warn them, then ban them from that companies forum

    9 vote(s)
    22.5%
  4. Yes - I have an idea to cut down on trolling

    1 vote(s)
    2.5%
  5. No - I don't think its a big issue but it is something we should keep our eye on

    7 vote(s)
    17.5%
  6. No - Trolling is part of the internet. We should just ignore it.

    2 vote(s)
    5.0%
  1. Scott Greczkowski

    Scott Greczkowski Topic Starter Scanning the Skies!
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    Back in 2003 when I opened SatelliteGuys as a place for members to help members without the heavy moderation. SatelliteGuys has always been a place where members can speak their mind and that has been something I have been proud of.

    However over the last year we have seen a giant increase of what we call "trolling" here at SatelliteGuys. And I got to admit its something that I personally don't like.

    "Trolling" is when someone comes in and posts negative comments about a service that they do not subscribe to and are just trying to cause a reaction from our members. This trolling goes against our entire mission here at SatelliteGuys which is members helping members.

    While we encourage members to post their honest feelings both good and bad about providers that they subscribe to, these bashing comments from people who no longer subscribe to a service don't help anyone with anything. To make matters worse these folks post their hate

    I have been in contact with a few of these folks who I feel are trolling and one person actually told me they would actually resubscribe to the company they hate just so they could continue to bash that company.

    So the question is what do we do about this so we can turn SatelliteGuys back into a place where members can get help from other members? I have a few ideas in place and we have installed some new software which allows us to ban people from threads if we find them trolling.

    I would like to hear your thoughts on how we should handle this issue. I have never been one who has liked censoring anyone, but now I feel something must be done. If we do take action I know we may lose some members. but the question is how many are we losing now by not taking action?

    Thanks for your support and feedback!
     
    #1 Scott Greczkowski, Feb 4, 2015
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 4, 2015
  2. stardust3

    stardust3 SatelliteGuys Master
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    Being over enthusiastic about a provider is as bad as trolling itself imo.
     
    Jim S., satgirl51, Iceberg and 4 others like this.
  3. Scott Greczkowski

    Scott Greczkowski Topic Starter Scanning the Skies!
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    I can agree with this as well, there is helping and then there is being a walking billboard for that company. :)
     
  4. StevenD

    StevenD Supporting Founder
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    Looks like a certain former dealer is going to get banned!
     
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  5. Hall

    Hall SatelliteGuys Master

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    That's only true if the site's owners or moderators choose to allow it. I wouldn't accept it just "part of the internet"....
     
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  6. jayn_j

    jayn_j Press On Regardless
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    Seems like a bit of a slippery slope to me. I think it needs to be repeated bashing with little or no factual content. Otherwise it causes general bad feelings. I recall a situation several years ago where a former mod was deleting posts he didn't agree with.

    I trust you to know where to draw the line and you certainly have the right to run your site as you see fit. I could see it being extended to a couple of others. Rocky and Don come to mind. But there are others who I would have put on that list in the past that have melted down.

    Is there any way to slow the process slightly? I think a warning usually escalates the situation and causes the offender to retaliate. Banning from a forum is likely going to cause a ruckus to spill over to another area of the site. In the past, you used to do warning, time-out, ban. That seemed to be effective.
     
  7. dare2be

    dare2be SatelliteGuys God
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    I think a publicly stated policy should be in place. Something like:

    Let the users do the policing with reporting posts (whether it be personal attacks, political rants, spamming, which includes both bashing posts and rah-rah posts of a company)

    Mods make the final decision on the reported post on whether the post needs to be removed.

    Once a user reaches 3 removed posts in a specific time frame (week? month? year?), they are then either banned or given a time-out.
     
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  8. lparsons21

    lparsons21 SatelliteGuys Master
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    As one who has done some posts that could be construed as trolling, even if they aren't intended that way, I would say the current warning, time-out, ban sequence makes the most sense. I think all of us have seen and posted things that we wish we hadn't at times in the hustle of wanting to respond in a forceful way.
     
  9. Scott Greczkowski

    Scott Greczkowski Topic Starter Scanning the Skies!
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    If I let them do it a few of them would already been gone. I am sure of that. :D

    My problem is I am too lenient on people and do let folks get away with more than I should.
     
  10. jayn_j

    jayn_j Press On Regardless
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    In the past, moderators on other forums have asked me to reconsider a post I made, and I have either modified it, or removed it. I don't think though that we are the guys Scott is discussing.
     
  11. Hall

    Hall SatelliteGuys Master

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    I suspect if a moderator does that it's with users who typically don't make questionable posts. You know, not their normal type of comment....
     
  12. Hall

    Hall SatelliteGuys Master

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    If you kick them out, what's the loss ? You said yourself, "...but the question is how many are we losing now by not taking action?". If for every bad user you think you could lose one casual loser, that's not a good ratio. If a bad user chases away 2, 3, 5, 10 casual users -- of course, no one will ever know this -- I'd call losing that one bad apple an acceptable loss.
     
  13. TheKrell

    TheKrell A mighty and noble race originating on Altair IV.
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    I think there's an upside to trolling in the form of traffic to the site. Doesn't that improve your ad revenue? I'd say "be very lenient" and let us (if we are so foolish as to feed the troll) deal with it within reason. Do said trolls actually drive anybody away? (I'm not driven away, I just sit back and chill.:))
     
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  14. Bobby

    Bobby Publican
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    That certain someone, while certainly a fan of the service he provided for, never started a trolling thread. He simply had answers that make sense. Yes, a lot of it was opinion, but many, many agreed with those opinions.....
     
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  15. jayn_j

    jayn_j Press On Regardless
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    If you do that too often, you end up becoming that "other site". The one where you simply cannot make a post that disagrees with the admins.

    I think Scott has the right balance. We can put up with PinkPassion or MemoriesOfMojo for awhile. Same with trolls. FWIW, I have been seeing a particular new user who has been posting "questions" lately that are designed to generate controversy. For the most part, folks are ignoring these posts and I suspect the jerk will soon get bored. Problem solved.
     
  16. Hall

    Hall SatelliteGuys Master

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    Regular members are more likely to put them on ignore. It's the casual, but registered, members, or maybe more importantly, unregistered visitors who could be scared away, never to return, that you don't want to happen.
     
  17. Iceberg

    Iceberg The No Pain Train
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    exactly. Folks who think a provider "can do no wrong" and attack folks is just as bad
     
  18. Iceberg

    Iceberg The No Pain Train
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    Now if we could take care of folks who are "spamming" ;)

    My views on it still havent changed. Posting a thread with a link to another site is just asinine. Why wouldn't I register at that site to read the articles?
    It would be like if all I did was post articles from say "sports illustrated" or "espn" in the sports area. Why wouldnt someone just go there directly?

    Also I thought websites frown upon cut and past jobs from other sites? Why are we allowing it?
     
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  19. Rey

    Rey @ your service

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    I've dealt with this in the past pretty consistently, and with the new software there are steps we can take as staff before removing a member completely from the site. When facing an issue like this, I've removed the post in violation and always made clear under "reason" as to why it was removed. If the member creates another similar post then I contact them after removing it for a 2nd time. Usually that doesn't go well and can't post publicly what we as staff in the past have received via private messages.
    Depending on what happens next, they'll get a warning but no vacation time.

    We now have a new feature called thread banning which to me is one of the best things about xenforo. We do not like having to ban someone and this feature will help us to avoid doing so. It's an extra step we can now take before having to give someone the boot. So after the warning, we can thread ban a member who is trolling a topic. IF this member decides to troll elsewhere in a specific forum, for example the Dish forums, then someone like Scott can actually ban them from that forum permanently. This member can either accept what has happened and follow the sites rules, flame the staff via emails or private messages which will unfortunately grant them a vacation.

    I believe it will usually end at thread banning but if it extends to forum banning,that should end it. If not then they will get time off and eventually it will be permanent.

    So to sum it up, I believe the steps should be warn, thread ban, forum ban. Hopefully the one trolling will stop there and continue to be part of satelliteguys, respecting the rules like the rest of us, including staff, do.
     
  20. msmith198025

    msmith198025 Member of the Year
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    I have noticed in the past, and some recently, that the "trolls" often cause less problems than those that respond to them. In so far as breaking standing satguys rules anyway.

    Personally, I think the way it is being handled in most cases now is fairly effective. I do agree with rey that a polite but stern warning should come first in all cases, then the thread ban (which is a great feature). I would say forum banning should only be used in extreme cases, and only for blatant violations (or obvious spamming).
     

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