Handling ranty posters

We occasionally we get a newcomer with zero post history who comes in guns blazing with an aggro tone. You know the type: long post, usually misinformed, with assorted negative assessments. Extra points for all lowercase or missing punctuation.

To be clear, the objectionable aspect of this is not whether or not someone likes what we do. It’s whether they’re respectful and looking for a discussion, versus just here to rant because they need an outlet.

The system will usually flag these posts for being new, but we still have to respond in some way. What’s the best practice in forum land for this type of thing, delete? Delete and block the user? Or just delete their posts until they write one that’s constructive?

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New users could have their first X number of posts restricted so that they require admin eyes to read them prior to becoming live? Not sure how easy that would be to implement, perhaps too much work, but it would be a solution.

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Once upon a time when I moderated a forum, this was always a challenge to deal with.

Some people don’t mean to be rude. Could be a language/translation barrier or what not. A warning (or talking-to) usually clears things up.

Others are outright Trolls, accept no guidance and believe they’re right and everyone else is wrong. They declare themselves rapidly and were banned just as quickly.

This is (roughly) how things would go…

  1. Warn in a PM, delete offending post
  2. Warn via PM, ban for a period of time (if the software can auto-reinstate. Forget manual…just ban them)
  3. Full ban with no communication.
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This is how it works currently, actually. There’s also a bunch of steps a new user needs to take in terms of reading posts, responding to several automated forum emails, etc. Only then will it even let you post something. Even then, if it flags something, we still have to decide whether to approve or delete though.

Good checklist! So there was always a manual component of admins addressing the user directly, basically?

Deletion and blocking just means having to delete and block again when they make a new account and get increasingly aggro. Addressing the culprit and the issue directly is often the best way to go. Well… At least until it’s not lol

Yep. A lot of us don’t realize that our writing can sound really snarky when that wasn’t the intent.

Yeah, the checklist is a bit of work, but when you finally ban someone permanently you know they’ve earned it, and have record of it.

I think we’re mostly ok on the snark aspect, and intuiting when someone is here to have a real conversation.

The problem is the area between that and a straight up “eff you” post, where someone mixes in some aspect of eff you, some aspect of misunderstanding about what we teach here, with technical discussion of how XYZ technique works — with all-lowercase and no punctuation on top of the sundae.

That’s the case where I want to say, ok, I think this person is basically trying to be a jerk, but it could also abe a non-neurotypical person who may turn around if spoken to — although I doubt it. I get caught in a loop of indecision on cases like this, if you see what I mean.

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I totally understand.

While somewhat tedious - letting the member declare themselves through a defined process makes the decision process much simpler. They were told what would happen if they persisted…and they did?

Decision made. Done. :slight_smile:

Sounds good, we’ll do that.

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You’re already doing a fine job, this forum is like paradise compared to most. I mean I’ve been on the site for a year, posting frequently, and I’ve had one person be a little prickly one time, and we just dropped it. Reddit, on the other hand . . .

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I personally like the drama n arguments, that gives life to a forum, I don’t think anyone looks negatively at you troy based on the forum content. Most the forums I’ve enjoyed have always had conflict and drama. It’s fun. It never changed my opinion on the content the forum is based around… After all, it’s a Forum.

Quite a few forums I’ve been a part of have a new member section tho. and with some posts n moderator discretion get allowed to post in the full forum. Thats when forums used to be popular tho, reddit has a version of that concept, you need some karma to post in a new subreddit

Without that teacher telling Steve Vai to give up, we would’ve never got all these beautiful songs. Don’t know if that song off Passion and Warfare really happened, but without these negative Nancys’, people wouldn’t strive to prove us wrong. :smiley:

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Confused, it’s too easy - you take out the Randy poster (Randy Rhoads I assume) and you put it up on the wall. Task complete, you’re welcome.

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The person that prompted this thread was not making valid arguments and not trying to debate.

He joined less than a week ago, was a Tool in his first post….which was deleted….and has gotten no better.

I’m all for a lively discussion. This was person was/is a Jackhole.

Just to clarify, I’m talking about people who aren’t here in good faith — they’re just here to make sweeping negative assessments, be combative, stir s**t up, and validate themselves.

Again, to clarify, that’s why I posted this thread. This type of forum activity is a lose-lose for us. It makes conversation worse, not better, because it’s not actually conversation. Good-faith users, who are here to share and learn, will typically flag these posts for what they are. And responding to these is a drain on our energies as a very small team trying to create better instructional materials, respond thoughtfully to TCs, etc.

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A section of the forum for new posters might help.

How you get them out of there idk. But on forums I’m used to you post legit stuff n moderators elevate you to post in the full forum.

For example on dmt nexus they have a section for new members, and it’s relatively obvious if someone has had a psychedelic experience and is being honest or just spamming.

A section for new members even gives the forum some mystic to new members, I remember this hardcore from trying to post random shit in forums. I’ve been posting radon shit since 2006.

I’m not sure how they deal with spam, but van halen links has been online for 24 years… incredible!


I agree. What I saw was straight up disrespectful and condescending. That sort of discussion goes nowhere good.
Luckily, it doesn’t happen here that much at all. Some forums are a complete dumpster fire.

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what was the post? I didn’t see it

It was deleted quite quickly.