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28-11-2011
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There are many angles to ponder from when it comes to removing a thread when it's on relative calmness.

For starters, although all threads and posts are subject to the same rules, those in the Rumor Has It area tend to be treated individually and receive careful observation. Often they will be removed after a major disruption, or when members keep trying to push controversial topics that only lead to flaming.. other times it's a never-ending circle of poor contributions. The latter is where the Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson thread falls in.

The topic of the thread has already served its purpose as it's common knowledge now that they are a couple. That, in addition to what I mentioned previously, should be enough reason to shut it down. However, there's more to take into account, since that thread was opened in April 2009, over 100 moderator actions (removed/edited posts) have been taken, when that thread is not completely off-topic or creating havoc, the thread resembles, like Bette mentioned, a fan site, which is something we have been struggling with for a while and will continue to work on in order to maintain some quality in the forum.

One more thing to consider is that the thread (just like most threads related to the movie) kept attracting the same participants, the dynamics that take place over there are unfortunately not very inviting for other members to participate in or a different type of discussion for that matter. The regular participants have also been previously banned, or are on the verge of a ban, full of warnings, with a tendency to go off-topic, or in a handful of cases, they exclusively post in that thread or those related to the same topic, they don't do it anywhere else and have pretty much segregated themselves from anything that pertains fashion and the rest of the community (and again, as Bette mentioned, we are primarily a fashion community), pretty much the same type of rhythm the Weight Thread took at the very end. This last reason may not be the most popular, especially if you do participate in that thread regularly, but it plays an important factor when considering the course of the thread from the outside and what more it has to offer for our community, which is next to nothing at this point.

Finally, the entire Sidewalk Cafť area was designed to be the 'playground' of the community from the very start, to interact and get to know each other more through non-fashion topics, it was never meant to be an outlet/dumpster to put all the discussions that we do not want in areas like Designers & Collections, Supporting Cast or Star Style. When we took such steps with threads like Model Behavior or the Weight Thread, it was only after long discussions and foreseeing potential topics that could emerge and be positive for the community, not necessarily in an intellectual manner, just lighthearted fun that anyone could join in. Alternative threads on celebrities (such as Reese Witherspoon or Miley Cyrus) have also been allowed for the same reason. Threads like Lindsay Lohan's are fortunately not that active anymore but they are still somewhat diverse in both the participants and the material shared.

The main responsibility as a member is to adhere to the rules. If you want to discuss Kristen's weight and there isn't a place to do it, you just don't discuss it. Lacking an outlet for certain topics does not meant this community needs one or that it is then a green light to do it in the only place that is available and that was not created for that. Rumor Has It, in all its anything-goes nature, is still subject to moderation and a more individual kind, we let members start alternative threads for topics that are considered off-topic in other areas, but these threads are not seen as necessary, we don't depend on them in any way, if our attention is brought to them, we may evaluate its pros and cons and just decide to remove it. We expect members to take further conversation to other features we provide, such as profile comments and private messaging.

Regarding the participation of moderators, we have assigned moderators to specific threads for a while, and we are thankful for the work they do because like I mentioned, it's really A LOT of work and clearly they are the ones that receive the harsher backlash after the entire team decides to take bigger steps and it's one or two mods the ones that get to execute it in public. As mentioned though, the outcome of a long-standing topic goes way far from the efforts one or two or the entire moderation team puts in daily in one thread (personal interest is not to be considered), and that's what we take into account at the end.

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Last edited by MulletProof; 28-11-2011 at 04:39 PM.
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28-11-2011
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Well said, MP!

It doesn't matter if a moderator participates or not ... that doesn't mean that they want to take on the personal responsibility to keep this problematic thread under control. None of the moderators you mentioned (or any others, including the ones assigned to moderate the RHI forum) have volunteered to take all that extra time out of their day monitor this thread in addition to their other duties. It takes a lot of time read every post, to delete and edit posts and to deal with all the issues some of the members have.

I'm sorry to have to say this, but a few members have ruined it for the many. And because it's not an important thread (it's not about fashion), it's just not worth it any more. Thread closed.... topic closed ... case closed.

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28-11-2011
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Thank you Mullet for your extensive explanation.

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28-11-2011
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I saw the Model & Celebrity weight thread has been closed because it got out of hand often, which by its self I don't agree with but also think it will result in things getting worse.

First of all, there were actual discussions held there, yes the occasional "ew, gross! she's anorexic"-comment popped up routinely, but in turn others would reply to them in a rational, explaining way to get across why it's not okay to say such things.

Weight is just a subject that is impossible not to discuss when it comes to this business, it's always on everyone's mind and it goes hand in hand with fashion and style.

Closing the thread will result in some rest for a while, but then people are going to get frustrated with the pressure building and will start discussing it in other threads, the models own threads, the Model Behaviour thread or whatever else.

If the rules were broken continuously, I would think mods have the ability to warn or even ban members for doing so and send a message out? That'd prevent you from having to close it.

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29-11-2011
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yeah, once again, thank you for the explanation on this subject.

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29-11-2011
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Re: previous closure of the Model/Celeb Weight thread.

History and Background

Quote:
Originally Posted by xFashionfollower View Post
I saw the Model & Celebrity weight thread has been closed because it got out of hand often, which by its self I don't agree with but also think it will result in things getting worse.
Quote:
Closing the thread will result in some rest for a while, but then people are going to get frustrated with the pressure building and will start discussing it in other threads, the models own threads, the Model Behaviour thread or whatever else.
You bring up some good points ... and you might be interested to learn the whole story.

Things have gotten better since we closed the "Weight" thread. The mods are not finding "more" weight talk elsewhere ... and they no longer have to babysit the thread. We've done this before (no weight talk anywhere) and we know how it was, before the thread. It actually got worse with the thread ... probably because it concentrated all the people who were so focused on "weight" and they egged each other on. So, it's much better without it, from the moderators' perspective ...

Quote:
First of all, there were actual discussions held there, yes the occasional "ew, gross! she's anorexic"-comment popped up routinely, but in turn others would reply to them in a rational, explaining way to get across why it's not okay to say such things.
Many of these exchanges turned into arguments, members started reporting each other for disagreeing with them, sometimes they were rude towards each other ... it was a problem. And it was getting worse.

Quote:
If the rules were broken continuously, I would think mods have the ability to warn or even ban members for doing so and send a message out? That'd prevent you from having to close it.
Yes ... the mods have the ability to warn and ban members, and we did ... a lot! It continued to take up too much moderator time, too many members had to be PMd and warned, too many posts had to be removed. Other members would not be aware of all of this, since it's confidential and deleted posts are not evident.



You probably were not a member when this all started, so most likey you are unaware of the enitre story so here's the background about our "No weight talk" policy and the thread:

We had two problems we needed to solve.

At one time tFS was inundated with "Pro-Ana" girls (and a few guys) who were using our forums to further thier anorexic/bulemic agendas ... and the team and management did not want to be any part of that. Our threads were flooded with chatter that got very personal, way off topic, and extremely sick young people were talking a lot about thier weight losses and encouraging others to join in. We felt strongly that we did not want to contribute to an extremely serious and life threatening problem ... just because models happen to be thin, too. We did not want to give them a place where they could influence other young people.

In addtion, the gossip about models and celebrities weight issues had became extemely mean spirited, and members were often being rude to each other as a result.

So, in 2005 (4 years after tFS was born) it was determined that talk about weight ... anyone's weight ... would be disallowed (to make it an easy rule to remember, fair to all and simple to identify and enforce) and it was added to the Community Rules as a permanent requirement for members. It has been very successful ... almost all members are aware of the policy and are able to abstain. And the Pro-Ana's went away.

However, at the urging of some members in this forum, the moderator team decided to try to find a way to make them happy too ... and provide a couple of places to discuss weight and model sizes and to see how it went. So, the "Model/Celeb Weight Thread" was started as a "trial thread" as an exception to tFS's "No weight talk". We wanted to see if it would allow some place for those members who are interested and to see if we could allow some conversation about weight while keeping it contained. We hoped that it would be easier to moderate all in one place and it would be a way for us to have our cake and eat it too.

Quote:
Weight is just a subject that is impossible not to discuss when it comes to this business, it's always on everyone's mind and it goes hand in hand with fashion and style.
We are aware of this so, we thought that we'd also provide a thread for members who are interested in this topic, in regards to the fashion industry. So, at the time we started the Model/Celeb Weight thread, we started another "trial thread" in The Etc.s of Modeling about models' sizing (Size Zero), which was restricted to talk about the fashion industry as a whole and their shrinking size requirements and it's impact.

The Weight thread took off, immediatly. But we found it very labor intensive for the moderators ... we were always having to deal with issues in that thread. The problems were increasing ... not getting easier to deal with ... probably because it drew a lot of fanatical people.

And as far as the Size Zero thread goes, members soon lost interest in that and quit posting, most likely because it was a very intellectual conversaion and no gossip was allowed.

So, the results in both threads proved that showed us that it wasn't working as hoped. It was clear to us that gossip was the thing that members wanted to do and that most of our members were not interested in the serious subject of sizing in the modeling industry. And we were trying to reduce unsubstantiated gossip and arguments, rudeness, etc. Because the trail failed, both threads were closed and we are back to the policy as it was orignially stated ... no weight talk anywhere on tFS.

To sum it all up .... we tried, it didn't work, we closed it. It's over.

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29-11-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xFashionfollower View Post

First of all, there were actual discussions held there, yes the occasional "ew, gross! she's anorexic"-comment popped up routinely, but in turn others would reply to them in a rational, explaining way to get across why it's not okay to say such things.

Weight is just a subject that is impossible not to discuss when it comes to this business, it's always on everyone's mind and it goes hand in hand with fashion and style.
you also didnt see the hundreds of posts that were removed or edited in that weight model/celeb thread. it may have appeared to you that problematic posts were few and far between - but i assure that was not the case.

there are many people on TFS that have little interest in a model or celebrity's weight or discussing it. i, myself and not interested in it at all.

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Last edited by lucy92; 29-11-2011 at 02:26 PM.
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29-11-2011
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That's an extensive history for a thread.. I hadn't thought about that since most of the time when I viewed the thread it was relatively "clean", but thanks for the explanation, it makes a lot more sense now.

It's a shame things have to go like that though, since I think the weight issue is a reflection of how the fashion industry along with the world tends to forget models are humans made of flesh and blood, who also suffer, are physically and mentally vulnerable and are being used as empty shells to hang clothes on.

But I guess finding a way to make it work isn't going to happen with so many people making it impossible, you guys definitely earned my respect with the amount of energy and effort that's been put into the issue though.

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30-11-2011
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Bette are you sure the Weight Ban was in 2005? I remember commenting on weight and not having it removed, and I only joined in 2006.

Also as far as I know, any weight related talk before the ban is still there, because none of it was removed. So you can actually go back to the old threads and see how vicious some of those arguments got...AFTER moderation!

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30-11-2011
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The weight policy started on october 2005, you signed up 9 months later, it was common knowledge by then but it did took us a while to get it all under control, that's why many posts were not noticed.. the report post feature also didn't exist, which is great support now.

Without getting too much into the policy because it bores the hell out of me, I'll just say that it's as essential to modeling as politics are to our daily lives, but we manage without either, there's a lot more in the forums, it's just a matter of sticking around and finding out about it.

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Last edited by MulletProof; 30-11-2011 at 01:06 AM.
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30-11-2011
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Thank you, xFF! We worked very hard on the issue of weight talk for a long, long time. I'm happy that you can see that we really did try to find a way to make it work.

And yes ... it's always just a few people who ruin things for the other members ... because they just can't seem to control themselves. Eventually many of these people get banned, but we have a 3 step process before we do that, to be fair and to allow them time to reflect and to change their behaviour, if they want to remain members.

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30-11-2011
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now that we are on it.
i cant beleive my Models in bathing suits thread was closed.:l
that thread was going top be EPIC

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30-11-2011
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^ that thread was going to be REDUNDANT

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30-11-2011
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^
maybe but there are worse threads.

i feel that sometimes there are too much gossip /rumors threads in tfs.

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30-11-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alonsoJonathan View Post
now that we are on it.
i cant beleive my Models in bathing suits thread was closed.:l
that thread was going top be EPIC
Yeah, I have no clue either, I'm sure it wouldn't have just turned into a nitpicky, insult slinging, veiled weight thread. Oh, wait...

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