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Community Building and User Generated Content Forum

    
Forum users problem
How can I stop them?
Matt1972




msg:1560973
 8:09 am on May 16, 2004 (gmt 0)

I have been maintaining a city forum for almost 4 years. Everything was fine, the forum became nr.1 discussion board in the city.

1 month ago one of the users posted some unpleasant things about a well known person who just died. I (moderator) removed his posting and give him a warning which he didn't like and he started to attack me. He and his friend have been attacking me (in forum) since then; suggesting how I should run the forum, how I shouldn't have deleted his posting, how they will revenge, they will knock me down on the street etc.

I said that there is only one moderator of the forum - all the rest, especially them, are just users. I don't need their advice how to run the forum and they should accept that, otherwise I would like them to go elsewhere. They got upset, attacking again... and the rest of the users started to complain how the forum became a fight place but nothing we can do. They go on and go on.

I would like to ask you what to do? I can't block them by IP, it doesn't make sense to block those two users because they can register again...

And I am afraid they will do more damage to the forum because they won't stop telling/suggesting me how to run it, what to do, how to do it :( Is there anything I can do to stop them?

 

asquithea




msg:1560974
 8:48 am on May 16, 2004 (gmt 0)

Delete their accounts. When they return, delete their new account. Don't say anything to them -- they'll know why they're banned. Eventually they'll get bored.

Enlist a couple of senior forum members as moderators to help you out. You can't monitor the boards 24/7, so it makes sense to have some respected members to help you out. They should have privileges to lock a thread, but deletion and banning is generally down to the forum owner.

For what it's worth, almost every forum has one or two members like this. It's generally best to nip it in the bud. In MozillaZine forums, such members are labelled "Troll", so that users can see this note on any post they make. Offensive posts are moved to a special "locked" board. Repeat offenders are suspended and then banned -- harsh, but it brought an escalating problem under control.

Matt1972




msg:1560975
 9:21 am on May 16, 2004 (gmt 0)

good suggestion but they will come back with new nicks and again and again...

My opinion is that they will get bored if I keep deleting their posts... forever, like you said. I hope that will help. But I still want to hear your opinions before I make any such decision.

Give me more ideas what to do. Thanks.

rogerd




msg:1560976
 2:24 pm on May 16, 2004 (gmt 0)

VBulletin has a feature that lets only the banned poster see his comments. No regular members see them, so he can behave as badly as he likes.

If you scan through the "hacks" for the major packages, there are a variety of devilish tricks to play on bad posters. One I saw for vBB delivers content slowly and unreliably to banned posters.

I'd recommend saving posts that violate your TOS as documentation. Repeat violators can be reported to their ISP.

Tracking IP addresses and either banning them or watching for new members from those IPs will help nip some issues in the bud, though of course there are ways around that.

Quick moderation will help keep other members from getting involved and angry.

grelmar




msg:1560977
 7:12 pm on May 16, 2004 (gmt 0)

My favorite BBS hack was one that delivered the TOS, 15 times, to the e-mail addy of someone on the "Ban" list every time they tried to post.

Though with people using false addy's and "junkmail" addys, this is not as effective as it once was.

Just keep doing what you're doing. Delete their posts, and keep burning their accounts. Sooner or later, they'll get bored. Its a hassle for you in the short term, but it will save you grief in the long run. Word gets around, believe it or not, and once word gets out that you take a firm stand against Trolls, they stop showing up eventually.

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