View Full Version here: : General Chat
It has come to my attention that there are a minority who have read the title of the IceInSpace General Chat Forum and have taken “Talk about anything and everything in here” to new heights of inane banter. The General Chat Forum is certainly not a place for posting thread after thread, just for the sake of posting something. It is for general chat and as most people browsing an astronomy forum would like to see, preferably astronomy chat.
The IceInSpace forums are moderated for the good of all browsing the site. To that end, IceInSpace does not give members the right to freedom of speech and never has. Not withstanding the last 24 hours and contrary to the belief of some, moderators very rarely remove or edit member posts. The forums are moderated to the forum guidelines.
Moderators may, from time-to-time, ‘moderate’. This is their job. To abuse our moderators while doing their job will almost certainly guarantee revocation of membership. They are not dictators and certainly not members of the Nazi party. If any member feels they cannot post without being personally abusive, incapable of following the forum guidelines or ignoring moderator requests, they might feel more comfortable elsewhere.
IceInSpace was created for astronomers by astronomers. It is, in fact, a community of astronomers with varying backgrounds, ages, and viewpoints. The forum guidelines and moderators are there so that everyone can enjoy talking about astronomy in this community of ours.
27-01-2006, 08:40 AM
I agree - hasn't been necessary, we generally moderate ourselves well!
slice of heaven
27-01-2006, 10:41 AM
And isn't that the real reason everybody is here?
No complaints here Mojo :thumbsup:
Why do spammers run rampant when Mikes away :confuse3: GROW UP
I've seen where unmoderated sites end up.....
Thank you to ALL the moderators for doing their job and doing it well.
I have deliberately refrained from replying and expressing my disappointment to this rubbish that has gone on far too long.
Since Mike left certain people have taken it upon themselves to pollute the forum with unnecessary posts and threads.
As the moderators and Mike have stated, it is an Astro related site.
General chat is tolerated if indeed it is posted in earnest and is approptiate.
Some people could not wait until Mike left to ambush this forum.
As a financial contributor to this site, I have NEVER considered myself to be above others or have special privileges. We are all guilty at one point of posting spam, but not with the intent to destroy what is a fantastic forum where we can share our images, thoughts and ideas and advice about astronomy.
I would like all members, financial and non financial to enjoy this site.
But to see people deliberately spam many various thread is not acceptable.
Case in point, “Do fire-fighters eat spam”…….There are people risking their lives to save others, while we sit back and enjoy our “AUSTRALIA DAY” holiday.
People have fought for this country and have given their lives and will continue to do so.
In the same light people have contributed time and yes money to this site to make it what it is.
If you have something constructive to say, even general chat, then by all means contribute.
If you receive a warning from the moderators, take it up with them in private and leave the rest of us to enjoy our forum.
There is no dictatorship on here, if you feel mistreated or picked on then leave. Don't contribute to this site anymore, start your own.
27-01-2006, 11:26 AM
I think the description of General Chat as "Talk about anything and everything in here!" should be changed. It does make it sound like "anything goes" and an open invitation to spam / mindless drivel. Perhaps something more along the lines CN's Off Topic Observatory: "... discuss anything not specifically related to astronomy ..." would be more appropriate. And some guidelines specific to General Chat might be a good idea. I can see how new members might feel cheated when their posts/threads are deleted/locked after having followed all the existing guidelines and having fooled around only in the "talk about anything and everything" section.
Mind you, it is not hard to give your thread some broad topical title and some vague direction, and keep the mods happy. No one has ever been shot down for wanting to just pop in and say hello.
27-01-2006, 12:20 PM
Whatever the decision is with General Chat by the moderators, that's fine by me and will go with it. In understanding this though (and I haven't been on the site for a couple days so may have missed stuff) please keep in mind there are a lot of forum first timers (myself included) who are learning the social structure and protocols of such sites for the first time, who may unintentionally make gaffs, and who will take their lead from the more experienced members and site founders.
Now this is NOT intended as having a go at Mike, but as an example that I remember, shortly after I joined in October Mike posted a thread on "Australian Idol". This transmitted a message to me very clearly that general chat was for anything including subjects as alien from astronomy as Australian Idol. Please be a little forgiving that some may have formed a wrong or unintended impression from such posts and that if a change in policy is required here that it is clearly communicated and consistently applied.
thanks for a truly WONDERFUL website and cheers,
27-01-2006, 12:45 PM
Mojo, I find the duplicity of the rules application to be totally inconsistent. Why is it that several members can spam thread after thread in every forum and nothing is done about it (if you want to know who I mean PM me)? I find this most unsatisfactory.
I do agree that spam should not be tolerate in the other more serious forums and I myself do stick to this policy. In fact several times last night I made a point to other members not to pollute threads started by others or threads in other forums. It is not fair to other users. That much is agreed. However as everyone knows prohibition just never works. Spam has existed on this site from the very first thread. It is a fair indication that this should be contained within a site specific forum. It does say post everything and anything in the header to the General chat area. It does not say it should only be confined to astronomy related stuff. We are not breaching the forum guidelines, under article 9 of the guidlines its says and I quote "The "General Chat" forum should be used for all off-topic posts that don't belong in the specialised forums". Surely this encompassed a specific topic on spam.
Last nights events unfolded because one thread was closed. Yes I started the thread. I did make it plain what it was so that those who are more seriously minded could avoid the thread. It was closed and this started the revolt. To correct you, it is not a minority who think that the moderation is ****** minded. It is a significant number of people here who resent threads being closed down. This site has created a huge email undercurrent and I receive many emails from people here on the specific duplicity in the rules. We help to make this site what it is.
I note that the people who have complained the most about spam have not been here as long as the long term members. In fact I find it comical that the people who have contributed the least seem to be the most indignate about the existence of spam. The long term members have made this site what it is, there have been periods of spam and it has usually died a natural death if allowed to take its course.
I personally started contributing spam when I saw that nothing was ever done about those who did it all the time. I received a note from Mike about it and I fail to see why two sets of rules should apply.
Surely one little thread could have existed and non of this unpleasantness would have come about. Not only is it up to us to act as adults, it is also up to the administration to act in a sensible manner. All that was needed was Geoff or Phil to say, we will allow this thread, but do not spam anywhere else. I am sure that we would have felt this was fair (well at least I would have) and only contained the rubbish to one thread. Every camp seems to have this sort of thread and it is by and large contained. Common sense needs to prevail by all, not just us.
missed something didnt i.
27-01-2006, 01:06 PM
Maybe you should name them and also spell out what you actually mean by "spam"? I haven't been here long obviously but I have belonged to many other forums over the years so I know what bad online behavior looks like, until this whole thing blew up I didn't notice any real "spamming" or "flaming" on ISS, just what appeared to be friendly discussion..???
27-01-2006, 02:09 PM
Yes that is my point, bad online behaviour is abusing everyone not starting a few threads in the general garbage section and not doing any harm to anyone.
I will not publically name them, because as I see it, they are not doing anything wrong. However, they seem to get away with what we cannot.
I agree with Janoskiss: Change the discription in the General Chat section. At the moment it is equivalent to contrapment. Please make it easier buy stating exactly how it will be moderated.
Rumples you make really good points sometimes.
27-01-2006, 08:37 PM
Contaminating this thread was totally uncalled for. (IMPO). L.
As for the rest of the discussion re; spam, why not have a section dedicated to it?
Just make sure it's named correctly, as has been suggested.
ps. We are supposed to be the 'superior race' aren't we? Why not act like it? Life is just too short. :D L.
27-01-2006, 09:43 PM
I personally do not like spam.
I personally have missed out on a bargain in the buy and sell forum because I missed a post by the buyer that the sale had fallen though because I was skipping through the spam.
Unfortunately in forums that have post counts this type of problem always rears it's ugly head. I visit a couple of forums that do not have post counts and spam is not a problem.
27-01-2006, 09:56 PM
The problem is not spam per se, but respect that appears to be lacking with some...
The professional "spammers" like Dragon & Ving have always had respect for other members.
27-01-2006, 10:04 PM
Then don't spend time going through it. It IS your choice, and we should all have that - Choice!
(so whoever deleted the last post without the guts to admit it please respect members rights to have varying points of view - more intersting for all - to have choices.)
27-01-2006, 10:14 PM
This comment is a bit worrying to me. To whom are we superior? This sounds like a racist remark to me.
27-01-2006, 10:27 PM
Yes that was a bit of an odd remark. I took it to mean race in the biological sense (like my year 8 bio teacher taught me), i.e. human race vs the other animals.
27-01-2006, 10:32 PM
If it's a question of race...
who is winning?
27-01-2006, 10:33 PM
The 'Human Race'! How else can you interpret it? :D L.
27-01-2006, 10:36 PM
What choice do I have? I don't choose which threads have spam in them and which don't.
27-01-2006, 10:37 PM
I knew what you meant L.
27-01-2006, 10:40 PM
I don't see us as superior to other animals, just different. In a way we are inferior, after all we are the only species on the planet that can't adapt to our evironment, we have to adapt the evironment to us.
On a more light hearted note, we are only the third most intelligent species, behind dolphins and mice :)
27-01-2006, 10:46 PM
Lately heard discussions with nazi in it - now discussions about race - you guys are scaring me!
27-01-2006, 11:13 PM
Keep it on topic please.
28-01-2006, 09:05 AM
If I can make a suggestion, I see many posts in general chat that should be moved to other sections. General chat imo should NOT be the place for astronomy talk. That way people don't have to wade through spam or off topic discussion to find an astronomy related topic. At the same time the specific astronomy topic sections should have a zero spam policy. This way it relaxes the general section for off topic discussion on cloudy nights and keeps the specific astronomy sections spam free. This idea works well on other forums.
28-01-2006, 09:19 AM
Constructive suggestions are always welcome ;)
28-01-2006, 10:43 AM
Agree with Janoskiss and Stu, short redefinition in title might add clarity to the intent of the section from the beginning. General chat can mean absolutely anything to most punters, might help reduce cross threading with astronomy related topics. The other option is to ban outright any topic not directly related to astronomy.. Dont know how that would go down with members new or old.
28-01-2006, 10:55 AM
Do you dare to draw the line as to what is and is not related to astronomy? :)
28-01-2006, 11:14 AM
Half the contributors will leave the site if they cannot talk about something not astronomy related. Maybe that's the plan to get rid of the long term members who built the site and when it has sufficient numbers, just p*ss them off. Maybe thats what the super nerds want, so they can just talk astro crap to each other, their only thing in common.
Not interested in that idea at all.
28-01-2006, 11:17 AM
No stinky, it would be impossible - that is the point. Tolerance at many levels will be needed between moderators and members. A little bit of fear policing can bring people into line, but that line of understanding is a fine one, hence the communication problems and barriers that are inherent in indirect communications occuring in forums. With new people coming and going constantly, learning the ways of the forum, and older members perhaps feeling intolerent of their postings, it will be an ongoing issue.I think what is hapening is interesting, like the forum is evolving to a next level and that process is one of trial and error and finding what works best- good stuff.
slice of heaven
28-01-2006, 11:20 AM
Where did that notion come from? :shrug:
What's this conspiracy theory about trying to get rid of long-term members from the site?
Why on Earth would they want to do that and what purpose could it possibly serve?
28-01-2006, 11:21 AM
Hi rumples, I apologies if my post was misinterpreted:confuse3: . I have a little more than astrocrap to discuss, as do you and all others. Dont get cranky with me yet please. I have no problem with anything you have posted and enjoy your more experienced perspective!:)
28-01-2006, 11:47 AM
No problems Berzerker, just getting a little suspicious of where this forum is heading. I find it difficult to decide what is spam and what is not in the General chat area. I see that there is a thread in there about insect repellent and would personally consider this to be spam. I just cannot see the understanding as to what is spam and what is not.
Don't get me wrong, I know what spam is. I just think that if you define it as pointless dribble, then most of what goes in the general chat section is point less. A good example is when we congratulate each other on making a certain number of posts. Or the Palindrome sequences that I have posted. Why was that allowed? Yet a thread of what sort of custard you like is not allowed.
Matt, I am not saying it is a conspiracy, just starting to look like one. I am questioning the rules. That's what intellectuals do, they question power. As you know, absolute power corrupts absolutely. We all have a say here despite the site being owned privately. We all make it what it is. The rules are one thing, but banning someone for starting some stupid threads is taking it all a bit far. Other forums I have been on have banned people for threatening violence. Not this trivial offence.
28-01-2006, 11:49 AM
Like a lead balloon me thinks. Members need somewhere to hang out, relax and talk about other stuff.
28-01-2006, 11:59 AM
Post from rumples from rumples ;
"I find it difficult to decide what is spam and what is not in the General chat area. I see that there is a thread in there about insect repellent and would personally consider this to be spam. I just cannot see the understanding as to what is spam and what is not. "
Members sharing experiences of products out in the field, quite related to their practical experience of astronomy and making it safer/easier ????
28-01-2006, 12:06 PM
Oops posted same time as you Paul.
I'd like to see mosquito repellent and custard like topics discussed in General Chat. I don't see that as spam but as a sort of getting to know ya kind of thing. It's harmless really and kind of makes the forum more homely? I liked the Sponge Bob cartoons and the other fun members got up to. Be sad to see it end.
But if Mike wants astronomy only, well, I'll still be around. It's why I came here in the first place, but probably not as often since we probably won't see the sky again until May with this wonderful big wet we are having.
I'm as questioning as the next bloke and I'd like to think that I qualify as an educated and intellectual type of lad. I am, after all, a senior journo with the country's larget commercial radio network...
I'm simply "questioning" whether all this is a bit over the top?
28-01-2006, 12:22 PM
Even Mike said he loved my bob & B1 in the general chat forum, so yup...expect more stuff like that from me. I'll respect his wishes & not post that crap in the image competitions etc. though.
28-01-2006, 12:24 PM
Well if it is relevance, then what about the guessing competitions we had this time last year. We had people putting up pics with lots of faces in them and having to guess how many you see. Nothing was done about that. How is that relevant to astronomy? This is my whole point, there is a huge inconsistency in the application of the guidelines.
Sure I can see where something is really stupid, but even still, if it is confined to the General chat area then let us be. We are not hijacking someones thread. Now that is spam. I see that a lot here, where someone takes the thread off into another tangent completely unrelated. Sometimes someone will say lets back on topic, but most of the time it is not.
While this discussion is unlikely to change the status quo, I think it is important to voice our opinions.
28-01-2006, 12:24 PM
Ok - repellant CAN be a good thing in Astronmy. So can food - lighten up.
28-01-2006, 12:30 PM
John I don't have a problem with that either, but I fail to see how that is different from starting a thread called the Official spam thread for Lostock. That is why the rebellion the other night. I think the stuff is very funny you put up. I just want consistency. And; as I have said, right from the beginning when we drew up the guidlines we always intended that spam would be confined to the General Chat area. Not to be in the more serious forums.
Matt, I don't think that this is over the top. It is the inconsistant rules that are over the top. I have many examples of where something is left in and something deleted. That I believe is the problem.
28-01-2006, 12:32 PM
Surely deletion is a LAST resort for moderators? The rebellion has happened because mods were using deletion with no attempt at moderation. In fact a bit of counter humour would have dampened things down right away!
We're all very aware you don't see it as over the top!:lol: :lol: :lol:
(bit of humour there).
we just need to get definitions down pat. anyhow i missed the initial problem so i dont really have an oppinion on whos right and whos wrong, and it would be wrong of me to form one.
I came here because AO was pretty much dead and a new livelier community was being formed by people interested in "astronomy". what this place has evolved into is truely amazing. great people, interesting topics on all subjects, lots of laughs, and a great depth of knowledge. who could ask for more.....
anyhow, there have been a few times where i have thought that if i was mike i'd have thrown in the towel as being a job too hard. hats off to him for keeping the place going :D
chill out peeps :)
28-01-2006, 12:42 PM
Yeah Paul, I understand totally, I've been reading it all & taking it in...silently until now. I can see no difference between starting up a lostock spam thread & a sponge-bob image really.
I've been discussing the whole thing with certain members in emails just like others here.
slice of heaven
28-01-2006, 01:24 PM
Spongebob is cool!!! :D
28-01-2006, 01:27 PM
Yes very cool, but not relevant to astronomy. Keep em coming John, I love da sponge bob
28-01-2006, 01:39 PM
l'm not bothered by spam in general chat, l'm more concerned about how some threads run of topic and become a general chat fest between 2 or 3 people and nothing is done or said.
what l want to know and l'm sure others do too is why is spam not being tolerated in general chat? can a moderator please explain this to me?
it's not like every man and his dog is going to jump on a spam thread, like everything else it will run it's course as does every other thread, if it is specified in general chat it will stay there and those that do not want to read it will not.
28-01-2006, 08:00 PM
I'm saddened by much of what I read here. This forum has been breath of fresh air for me breathing life into a hobby dormat for more than 15 years and largely killed off my bitter divisions of astro-societies - please don't let this be the fate of IIS. The key thing must surely be "tolerance". Disagreement and dissent and discussion are fine and healthy, but why must people aggressively force their stance with degrading language such as "mindless drivel" accompanied by equally charming "grow up". One person's mindless drivel is another's passion, and the aggressive usage of terms such as "grow up" demonstrate a lack of self control, respect for others and maturity in itself.
Perhaps there could be a call by Mike and Moderators for constructive suggestions as to the format, definition and content of General Chat follwoed by a poll from the members. Sure it's a private web-site, but there can't be any harm in taking a collective and inclusive view.
28-01-2006, 08:07 PM
Isn't general chat just that, general chat.Regards cristian:nerd:
28-01-2006, 08:10 PM
I totally agree with all that you say here Robert.
28-01-2006, 09:05 PM
MMM spam is good! I like to spam.
spam spam spam spam spam spam spam spam spam.
Some like ham, some like clam, I only like spam.
spam spam spam spam spam spam spam spam spam.
I'll spamarate while you moderate. I spam therefore I am.
spam spam spam spam spam spam spam spam spam.
Here's some more spam. Becuse I like it so much. Want more?
The above drivel "mindless" enough, Robert? Should I "grow up" or keep being a constant source of annoyance? There is a limit to everything, including people's tolerance for nonsense...
OTOH, I also sympathise the genuine considerate sentiments expressed in your post. This place has been running as smooth as a fine-tuned ebony-star-laminated teflon-padded Dobsonian for over a year. Maybe there is a critical mass around the 650-something mark where the forum's current model starts to break down and becomes non-functional. Anyone looking to do a PhD in sociology?? This would make a good topic!
A split into more distinct subforums might work, i.e., iceinspace->chitchat, iceinspace->equipment, etc, but no iceinspace->all. Of course you'd need more moderators.. :confuse3:
28-01-2006, 09:35 PM
LOL!! Buzz off, you...you.....SPAMMER!! (he-he!!)
All good points Steve.
28-01-2006, 09:39 PM
firstly let me say that l like this site and thoroughly enjoy the comments and general input that everyone contributes whether that be in general chat whatever the topic as well as the dedicated astronomy topics.
l also think Mike and the moderators on the whole do a pretty good job.
however, the terms (privately owned site) and (this is not a democracy) as quoted by those in charge, to me seems odd, sure Mike started the site and then the forum but he also invited anyone that wanted to, to become a part of it and l am sure was very happy as it started to grow into what it is today.
at a certain point and maybe this is it you cannot make arbitrary rules that will suit everyone because you have too many differing views and personalities and maybe some discussion or majority rules points have to be adopted.
no group this big whether it be private, political or otherwise can survive without change and l am sure that in the beginning Mike never thought it would get this big and therefore never planned specifically for this type of outbreak (l may be wrong).
Mike maybe the leader of this site but the members are the site and somewhere l am sure there is a compromise with those that take issue with the way it is run.
28-01-2006, 09:57 PM
The site was started and is owned by Mike.
Mike has entrusted the moderators with managing the site.
Like you and I, Mike and the moderators, are not perfect.
Like you and I, they make mistakes.
Why do I make mistakes?
Through not understanding you, ego, stupidity, ignorance, pride, inexperience, emotional frailty, needing to be accepted, incorrect assumptions, fear of looking weak, partial knowledge, intolerance, thinking I know best, etc.
If I am rude to someone, I notice that they often reciprocate - twice as hard; the conflict escalates. People take sides. Focusing only on the differences, what we share in common evaporates and we end up divided.
If I am “right” and “win”, why do I feel so hollow? Is it because winning wasn’t worth the hurt I may have caused someone, just to satisfy my pride? Is my fragile pride that important?
When I am wrong, I sometimes have the courage to admit it; at least to myself. When I am brave enough to admit it to others, I am frequently surprised at how accepting they are. It is okay to be wrong; to have misunderstood someone. It is okay for someone to misunderstand me and in truth, are we not equally responsible for that shared misunderstanding?
To believe otherwise suggests I am a victim; what happened to me was wholly wrong and completely undeserved. The universe must have it in for me. Why won’t they agree with me? Surely they can see that they are wrong? If I can just raise one more point, then unquestionably the jigsaw will be complete and everyone will see how I have been misunderstood.
Probably, at times, Mike and the Moderators may have “wronged” IIS members.
Probably, at times, IIS members may have “wronged” Mike and the Moderators.
Probably wasn’t intentional.
Likely they didn’t even know they had done so.
It only hurts when it gets personal.
I am 100% sure it is not intended.
By either side.
We get backed into a corner and say stuff.
Hopefully, we’ll grow and learn.
Leave it all behind.
Just like the fights and name calling of our school boy years.
Important at the time.
Faded memories now.
30-01-2006, 09:20 AM
Dennis, your insight and ability to articulate it is nothing short of brilliant! Could not have been put better.
30-01-2006, 10:11 AM
spot on dennis, is this thread still going - hopefully slowing down, any outstanding issues being looked at and mike will get back to us re clarification etc
meantime - an advertisement!!! - mods please kill if necessary
i have decided to ignore it now and get on with astronomy!
all newbies that read this post, please redirect to http://www.iceinspace.com.au/forum/showthread.php?t=7264
you can come and argue with me how easy or hard it was to spot your first planetary nebulae. argue with me, what colour you think it may be? there is a photo there from beren which shows the colour. do your hardest and argue with me how easy it was to split the beautiful double star Rigel. Who was able to do it with the smallest scope or largest eyepiece (ie smallest mag) and finally, count those small galaxies currently rising in the east and we will argue how many you have counted.
When i mean argue, i am being flippant, these targets are set for the newer guys to have some success with.
end of advertisement
astronomy = fun!
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