Attack of the Killer Trolls.

Discussion in 'Beginners Corner' started by Bob Hubbard, Jun 15, 2006.

  1. Bob Hubbard

    Bob Hubbard Retired

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    Recently, in regards to a few individuals, we've heard grumblings of dissatisfaction from a few members. There has been mention of mass exoduses, abandoning the site, etc. because of comments made by a few individuals.

    I would like to address some points here.

    1- When you read something that is a violation of our rules, use the Report to Moderator feature, so that we know there is a problem. If you do not, we may not see the problem. The Report to Moderator (RTM) is an icon of a white triangle with a red border with an ! in it. It is located at the top-right of each post. Please only send 1 RTM on an issue, or 3 max if its a problem that jumps threads.

    2- Being an idiot, a moron, a poor speller, a poor writer, a close minded fool or a pompous windbag are not violations of our rules in of themselves. If they were, we'd have to fire at least 4 staff as well since they violate at least 3 of those.

    3- "I don't like this persons posts, so I think hes a troll and you should ban him or I'm going to leave." Ok. Bye. We have a feature on this site, it's called "ignore". You can put someone on your ignore list, and then you will not have to read anything they say. Interestingly enough, in 1 such recent case, there is a very vocal individual who we have received many complaints about the content of his posts....but only 4 people have placed him on ignore...none of whom are the ones complaining that he posts crap. Use the tool folks. Thats why it's there.

    4- "All the good people are leaving." No, but they are abandoning the field and giving the win to the vocal yet wrong. We would much prefer to see the good people post more, and call in more good people, who can not shout down, insult and ridicule someone like so many other sites, but drown out their misinformation with solid, professionally written information.

    5- "Bob you do nothing to stop these people." If anyone honestly thinks I am here, sitting on my duff, enjoying watching nutjobs and dangerous people trash things, then I honesty want to say I think you're a fool. I try very hard to keep things as fair as possible, to give people a fair shake. We get 'invaded' by losers and trouble makers all the time. We get a bunch of honestly uninformed and misinformed beginners all the time. I am sorry that we don't jump to ban people just because someone doesn't like them, or thinks they are stupid or has a different viewpoint than the mainstream. We try to be fair, sometimes more than fair, before booting people. I spend hours each day on the phone with staff discussing things, hours in conference discussing situations, etc. I visit other forums where possible problem users have been, checking their history, and communicating with other board admins about problem members. We are doing quite a bit, but it's behind the scenes. In public, we warn, we nudge, we correct, and when we have to we suspend and ban.

    Another point is, I'm sorry but there are arts I know nothing about, or so little as to be pointless. For me to jump in to the fray, would do nothing. A no-belt trying to back up senior practitioners in an art that someone is now claiming rank/knowledge/etc in just holds no water. Guy with a pistol doesn't really reinforce an armour column now does it? Call in air support, or bring in more mature experts who can support your position and drown out the other guy.


    Bottom line: The board is, what it's members make it. We, the staff aren't here to babysit anyone. If you don't like what you read, then if its a rules issue, report it, if its a different opinion, debate it, if it's a person who drives you nuts, ignore him, and if its someone posting complete crap, bring in some experts and out post him. Once we are aware of the problem, we can look into fixes. But not until then.

    You don't stand watching your house burn while holding a cell phone crying about non-responsive firemen. You don't stand by a payphone watching a mugging crying about no police. You don't read a message board crying about trolls and no mods while staring at the RTM/PM/Contactus Form links.
    Period.


    Complaints, comments all welcome.
     
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  2. Kacey

    Kacey Sr. Grandmaster

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    Bob -

    This is a great post, full of useful information that many people need (and some people will still ignore) - would you consider making it a sticky, and maybe putting it in the Beginner's Corner? :asian:
     
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  3. Bob Hubbard

    Bob Hubbard Retired

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    Done :)
     
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  4. Swordlady

    Swordlady Senior Master

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    Great post, Bob. It's definitely good for the Beginners Corner, but perhaps it should be made an Announcement for the entire MT, since not everyone reads the Beginners Corner?
     
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  5. Bob Hubbard

    Bob Hubbard Retired

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    People read the announcements forum?
     
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  6. Swordlady

    Swordlady Senior Master

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    LOL - I mean that this thread should be a forum-wide announcement. As in Stickied in every forum.
     
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  7. Cruentus

    Cruentus Grandmaster

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    Since you opened it up, I have a few.

    I’d like to start by saying that I have been with this board since within about the first year it started. I am friends with people here, Bob included, in person not just ‘online.’ I care about Martialtalk and would like to see it continue to do well.

    I think it has done well, and will continue to do well, but I also think that there are barriers that if not removed or changed, the board will never reach its full potential.

    So anything I say here that is seen as criticism needs to be looked at in light of the fact that I wouldn’t waste my time with this if I didn’t care.

    Now, time to rain on the parade.

    The problem is that “friendliness” is the main criteria for membership over and above all else. Lying, fraudulent behavior, trolling, and the like can flourish, so long that everybody is “nice” to each other.

    While “friendliness” is certainly a good concept, I don’t think that it does the trick by itself. I’ll break down a few problems with what was posted, and then I will provide what I think is a solution.

    Problem 1. People can still behave badly while getting around the rules. So, what happens is that everyone is forced to tolerate bad behavior until a rule is broken (which could take months or years if carefulness is observed). This compels the staff to continue to legislate more and more rules to combat bad behavior, which is wholly ineffective, leaving a litany of rules that are very hard for even staff members themselves to keep track of. Soon we will need martialtalk attorneys to interpret the rules (tongue and cheek). This also compels members and staff alike to try to use tactics to “bait” the “bad behavior people” into breaking a rule, or to covertly or overtly harass them in hopes that they’ll post less or leave, or argue with them to try to call them out on the carpet. All responses that often award good standing members disciplinary action, while the annoying members continue to behave badly with no recourse.

    Problem 2. “Ignore” and other such features are wholly ineffective when the core of the problem is allowed to perpetuate. If no one officially breaks the rules, then RTM does very little. Note, though, that I still use the feature, and I think it is good to keep staff abreast of what is going on through the feature. But, the fact is that with the current structure nothing can be done about bad behavior unless a specific rule is broken, making RTM ineffective many times. As to “ignore;” just because I can’t see someone, that doesn’t mean that they aren’t there. If I decide to put a member (we’ll call that member ‘Moron’) on ignore, Moron is still posting. People are still responding to Moron. I am effectively “out of the loop” so to speak. By being “out of the loop” where Moron is active, it sort of alienates me from those discussions. So, once again, because Moron is a Moron, I and any other quality members who might be inclined to use the “ignore” feature get punished. So, my choices are to endure Moron, or ignore Moron and be out of the loop. It’s a lose-lose situation, and it isn’t fair. Not only is it not fair, but it perpetuates Moron posts and discussions, and it inhibits quality posts, thus the quality of the board goes down.

    3. Although “the board is what its members make,” responsibility goes both ways. It starts with the structure of the board. The structure of the board has to be CONDUSIVE of quality membership. If you want informed people who are highly skilled in the martial arts/combatives field to post on your board, the structure of the board needs to be set up so those people feel comfortable. An environment where the expert opinion holds the same weight as a morons opinion does not make experts feel comfortable posting. But, the morons, because of the fact that they are more interested in being moronic rather then informed, have nothing to lose and everything to gain by posting, no matter how stupid they sound.

    If I post, “I think that eye gauges are a great way to change the attackers focus and motivation,” and I get a moron who responds with, “I tranned at the shoalin timple, and ernesto made me gardian of the doce paras from cubu where we used the chi eternal force. I shooed this th Bruce Lee, just ask Mr. Westerfalt of kenpo and hell teel you it is true. Here is the link to an official post if you don’t believe wat is truth. www.beefcaketruckerport/shaolin/library/skinnyweirdoface.net so we do the chi power, and I break a guys fingers with my eyesoccets when he trys to eyegauge.” Then, guess what….? I don’t feel compelled to post much anymore, and nor does anyone else with an informed opinion.

    Informed, well written, intelligent posts only go so far when they are put on parity with moronic, self-promoting, ill-informed posts. It end up being a waste of time for experts, who will spend their time doing more important things rather then engaging in conversations that are overshadowed by bad behavior.

    Solutions:

    I have provided solutions before, to no avail. I will try to do this again, probably to no avail. Solutions require change, and we all know how hard that is for most people including ourselves. Well, here it goes anyway…

    1. The board can’t be run just on the concept of friendliness if some of these issues are too ever be solved. I have suggested this before, but I think MT should be a “Friendly and professional discussion of the martial arts.” Professionalism should be a core concept, along with “friendliness.” Not that “beginners” can’t post, it is just that everyone should be required to behave with a certain etiquette. You can have ‘fun’ areas like the locker room, premium areas, bar and grill, etc., where less professional discussions can take place. But, if people want to post in the other areas, they have to exhibit certain decorum. The one thing that the trolls, shameless self-promoters, liars, frauds, and flamers all have in common is that they aren’t professional in their behavior. I couldn’t go to a business meeting and start arguments with people, shamelessly promote myself, and conduct myself poorly, lest I am kicked out of the meeting. I couldn’t be doing a presentation at a business conference and fabricate a bunch of data to convince people of my viewpoint, lest I be officially reprimanded or at least called out on the carpet in a “not so friendly” fashion.

    If people are required to conduct themselves with a level of professionalism, then you have grounds to do something about the “morons” who currently shirk around the rules and get by on the current structure.

    2. Revise the rules. Make things simpler rather then a hodgepodge of legislation that is only destined to get more detailed and harder to follow. The current structure where more then one staff member has to decide disciplinary action is a good one. Just take away the detail of the rules, and make them more broad and conceptual rather then so specific. Keep the rules simple, and let staff vote according to the structure over disciplinary action rather then looking for a specific rule to break. So, if Moron is going around and being unprofessional and not fitting with the culture of MT, then the staff can decide to take action right there in a gradual steps (Public warning, PM warning, suspension, etc.) rather then searching the rulebook and waiting for that specific rule to be broken so disciplinary action can be taken. Also, this could prevent long standing and quality members from getting “sent packing” on a technicality.

    3. Run Martialtalk like it is a “Membership driven business” rather then a “Community” or “online universe.” This shouldn’t be the staff or other member’s personal “sim city.” This should be a large private club where values are exchanged. In a membership driven business, if someone is bad for business and hurts the culture and participation of other members, they can be warned and subsequently let go if behaviors don’t improve. Making these decisions in a membership driven business is very easy to make. There is much less drama, power exchanges and struggling, and game playing under a membership driven business structure. Yes, I realize that many people thrive on those things like drama and power and the fantasy universe that a talk forum replicates and many WANT to complicate their lives; which is why I think that I am wasting my time with this post and that things won’t change.

    4. Last but not least of the solutions, keep in mind that this is just a forum! Yes, I realize that to Bob, many staff members, and to members like myself, Martialtalk is more then just a forum. However, to most people, and in all reality, it is just a talk forum. This is why things, like the rules, need to be kept simple. This is why the culture needs to be created by the structure of the board, and the burden doesn’t lie solely on its members to make it a quality place to be. Professionals in the martial arts industry and experts as a whole will go where it will benefit them and where it is easy for them. MT is just another forum, and if there is more hardship then benefits and if they have to work real hard to make it a community in which they will fit in, then guess what…? They won’t. They’ll go do something more productive.

    It’s just a forum folks. Those of us who do care will just try our best to make it a good place to be.

    So, these are some solutions. You (Bob and anyone else) can use the cell phone and the burning house analogy if you would like, but I don’t think that would be a fair assessment to make towards many staff members and long standing members like myself who have made the suggestions and who have tried to improve things. Who often continue to try, only to be rewarded by looking on the forum to find some of the same problems with no solution implemented. I have spent a lot of time and energy to help improve things as a member who does care, as a staff member for a spell, and as a friend to many people here. If you are staff, you can search old posts in the staff lounge on the very issue of “professionalism,” where I spent a lot of time and effort writing and trying to improve things about a year and a half or so ago. I don’t expect that my solutions are the only ones or even necessarily the “right” ones, but I would hope that at least something would be done to improve situations.

    That said, it is just a forum, so I will go back to my day to day and leave it to the rest of you to decide what to make of my comments. I will continue to benefit and provide value as I see fit, and life will go on. I know that the staff works hard, and will do what they can. I, in fact, think that the staff works too hard. I think that it would be better to work smarter, and “uncomplicate” things by making some structural changes rather then spinning the same wheels. But, these aren’t my decisions to make. I make no threats to leave or of mass consequence if my advice isn’t heeded. It is just a forum.

    Good luck. As always, my communication lines are always open for anyone who wants to talk. And again, I post these issues up with no ill-intent, but because I do in fact care. Even though, deep down inside, I doubt that my post here will matter in the long run. Yet, I waste my time the same way I would by trying to put out a fire with a garden hose even if I found out that the firemen weren’t coming. I guess I am too stubborn, too loyal, and I don’t like to give up…

    With respect,

    Paul Janulis
     
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  8. Brian R. VanCise

    Brian R. VanCise MT Moderator Staff Member

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    Nice post Paul. I particularly like this :

    Problem 2. “Ignore” and other such features are wholly ineffective when the core of the problem is allowed to perpetuate. If no one officially breaks the rules, then RTM does very little. Note, though, that I still use the feature, and I think it is good to keep staff abreast of what is going on through the feature. But, the fact is that with the current structure nothing can be done about bad behavior unless a specific rule is broken, making RTM ineffective many times. As to “ignore;” just because I can’t see someone, that doesn’t mean that they aren’t there. If I decide to put a member (we’ll call that member ‘Moron’) on ignore, Moron is still posting. People are still responding to Moron. I am effectively “out of the loop” so to speak. By being “out of the loop” where Moron is active, it sort of alienates me from those discussions. So, once again, because Moron is a Moron, I and any other quality members who might be inclined to use the “ignore” feature get punished. So, my choices are to endure Moron, or ignore Moron and be out of the loop. It’s a lose-lose situation, and it isn’t fair. Not only is it not fair, but it perpetuates Moron posts and discussions, and it inhibits quality posts, thus the quality of the board goes down.

    Your description of the ignore button is exactly the same as mine and many other members.

    Brian R. VanCise
    www.instinctiveresponsetraining.com
     
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  9. Bob Hubbard

    Bob Hubbard Retired

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    The idea of insisting on profesisonalism is good, on the surface. The problem is, the majority of people do martial arts as a hobby, not a profession. Ironically enough, the bulk of the problems have come from the so called professionals, who have egos the size of the sun, who think they are above anyone elses rules but their own.

    The original charter for MT was for a "friendly and profesional community". Regardless of what direction we move in, we will piss some people off. There are some who want to check every claim, every bit of paper, every credential, and treat you like a criminal if you get a date wrong or an address off. There are those who want to use this forum to "expose fraud", which is sometimes a good thing, but more often than not is really a lame excuse for "I dont like it so I want to rag on it". Then there are those who have broken away from a line, or who have a long running difference of opinion on something, who insist they are the only "right" way to do something. And their followers crap all over things.

    Kenpo Politics, Arnis Politics, KMA Politics....all have been major headaches here. The tired and boring argument of "TMA vs MMA", self trainers who think that you can really learn how to do something by looking at a picture book in your back yard, etc. Simply put, it gives me and many of us, a headache.

    So, here is part of where were at.
    We are looking at shortening the rules. From 40 Billion pages, back to something close to the original 1 page.

    We will be addressing the 'content' concerns, but in a way that allows us to retain the "Friendly" part of the equation. MT's mission is not to be an elitist playpen, a cliquish club, or a fightclub. Its a place to bring all levels of knowledge together,, in as non-exclusive a manner as possible. It must retain that.

    We are working on other solutions to solve some of our recent problems as well, and those will be phased in gradually over the remainder of the year.
     
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  10. Cruentus

    Cruentus Grandmaster

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    Drats....I was trying to turn MT into a fightclub, but my plans were foiled again! ;)

    Seriously, Bob, it sounds like you guys are working on some good changes for the better. I like the idea's of going back to the original simple but effective rules, and addressing the content concerns by balancing out friendliness and quality without being elitists.

    I know you and the staff are smart and good at what you do, and I have full confidence that things will improve for the better. I look forward to some of the changes that you are looking at.

    As to "professionalism," I hear your concerns about "professionals" having been the problem, and about elitism and fraudbusting issues.

    When I say "professionalism," I am refering too professional behavior rather then simply making money off the martial arts. You can do martial arts as a hobby and still behave with good ettiquite. As you know, professional behavior is something that is greatly lacking in the "martial arts business." I refer here to requiring a certain ettiquite rather then creating a safe haven for elitists and ego-mongers who propose to be "professionals."

    But I think you got what I mean.

    Anyways, thanks for the response. I don't mean to be negative, because everyone has been working hard and doing a nice job so far. I am just trying to help, which sometimes means pointing out changes and taking a critical look at things.

    Again, I have full faith that you and the staff will do the right thing. And as always, I will do what I can to help...

    Paul Janulis
     
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  11. Bob Hubbard

    Bob Hubbard Retired

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    I just got done condensing 5 policies into 1. Alot of words met the knife today. It's now up for review and further trimming before we roll it out hopefully tomorrow. Over the next week, we will be doing the same to all the forum rules and policies.
     
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  12. Don Roley

    Don Roley Senior Master

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    There is a great difference between something that is unclear and when everyone who has been active for more than a year in martial arts can tell is a lie. Multiple lies, getting caught in lies, statements that contradict each other, etc.

    And despite all this, some people are still allowed to post.


    Frauds have a big advantage over the rest of us- they are not bound by the truth or honorable behavior. They can change their story to make it sound however it will go over best. If someone checks one of their statements and finds it to be a lie, they can accuse the other of not being truthful about it. Even if it turns out that someone says something that is untrue, sometimes they later claim that someone hacked their accounts and they themselves did not make the statement.

    This stuff does not fool people that have been here for a while, but the newbies coming to seek knowledge don't know any better. I just saw a post where someone with only three posts total asked a question about something and a fraud answered and was believed. And I am not even talking about cases where someone links to their posts here from other sites.

    If people do not counter what they know to be a lie, then these lies could be accepted as truth by some. If someone sees knowledgeable people not react to the frauds, how can they not assume that there is some acceptance of what the frauds say?


    It is not like lying is against the rules here and we can hit the RTM button over something we know to be lies.

    But, if you post something that makes it clear that a person of lying, you run the risk of being punished for non-friendly behavior. I know Bester got suspended at least once for saying things I agreed with. Hey, there is a thread here right now about the death of a woman and some Moron jumped in to talk about how he always used to talk with her about her husband- whom he is now saying he was very close to and dropping comments about how much personal instruction he got from this guy. Later on, he can link back to the thread from another forum and point to it as "proof" of his claims since no one is challenging him on it. If you do, you run the risk of being accused of stalking the guy or derailing a thread about the tragic death of a woman. But he won't face any problems for working his claims in just as soon as someone is too dead to respond and counter him.

    Years ago, when I first became a moderator, I tried to get some folks I knew who had lived in Japan and studied things like kenjutsu to register here. They did not do so. I think I see their reasoning now.

    Another strength a fraud has that we don't is that they have nothing to lose in terms of their reputation. Those that are knowledgeable do have their reputations to worry about. If they say something that is a fact, the fraud is free to argue (as long as they pretend to be polite) that the real expert is not what he seems to be. But if the real expert does the same, their reputation might go down the tube. Not responding to these frauds' attacks on their expertise does the same thing. In a case where the moderators will not step in and say that XXX is known to have lived in Japan and things like that, then it really comes down to who can argue the best, with the frauds having nothing to lose. And they are free to pull out all the stops.

    I do know some sites where people like Ellis Amdur or Steve Delany are known to the moderators and if someone even tries to say they are not what they say they are they will get smacked down and told quite clearly not to continue with that line of attack. Not here despite the fact that this site has provisions for advisors.

    I myself have suffered damage to my reputation due to my being here. I will say that something is false rather than somehow give the impression that I agree with what is being posted due to my silence. When that is not enough, I have to show that the other guy is lying and a fraud. That has given me a reputation as being argumentative. If I were to cross the line of martialtalk and get suspended or worse, word might get back to my teacher or the head of my art slightly filtered to make me look even worse. I am wondering if it is worth the risk to my rep. It is not like I am Edmund Blackadder who can say what he wants without fear of consequences. I am known to live in Japan and to speak and read the language. I can't talk about things like history or Japanese situations without standing up and telling the world who I am. But that also can come back to haunt me. Hell, you should see the way some people react when they come to Japan and see that I come into class smiling and telling jokes.

    It seems to be a matter of benefit and risk. If people are supposed to help keep this place from being overrun with trolls and frauds and yet might suffer risks to their reputation for doing so, then I don't see how we can attract those who worked for years to build up their expertise. What is in it for them? Some things are opinion- kata, sparring, efficiency, but others are facts. And people who know the facts have worked to get that knowledge and are loath to run a risk for something that does not benefit them in the least.
     
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  13. shesulsa

    shesulsa Columbia Martial Arts Academy

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    It's a pity that people don't see value in your endeavors here, Don. There have been times when I sensed that I wasn't well-respected for being here. My purpose here is my own as your purpose here is your own.

    Ultimately you have to make your own decision and you are the one who must live with it for these other fine gentlemen do not live in your head.

    There are warriors who quit and walk away from a battle they think they cannot win just before they win it, and then there are warriors who fight to the end who gain the benefits of repeated victory. It's a careful call and one is not necessarily better than the other ... just more suitable to the individual.

    I would REALLY hate to see you go on such a small thing. I understand there are different social pressures in Japanese culture, however. Rather than extinguish your flame of truth, I hope you continue to let it shine here. Oh yes, and ... we may need a bonfire once in a while.

    :asian:
     
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  14. Bob Hubbard

    Bob Hubbard Retired

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    Then maybe I should just shut the site down Don.

    Because what a few have demanded, is not an option to me. I do not see open warfare, demands for microscopic verification, or other such actions to be something I wish to deal with. I also have a very low opinion for those sites that profess to out frauds, but are rarely more than an open bash fest on what they don't like or understand.

    My and a few others views on many of the so-called fraud busters is, they are stupid. Yes, stupid. Loudly pounding their chests, proclaiming themselves to be the source to truth, they are often unable to participate at a mature and professional level. They are also the first to cry about a lack of professionalism.

    You want the ability to call out liars, slap them around, and depant them in public. Fine. But, you want to do that in an environment where they aren't allowed a chance to reply, or better yet, make a public *** of themselves.

    Ed Parker was once approached by some of his students during a tournament. Seems someone, lacking in quality, had made it to the finals, through luck. They declared their views to him. He replied "You think he is bad?" "Yes" was the reply. "Do you think I think he is bad?" "Yes". "And after tonight, so will everyone else.".

    I would expect intelligent people to understand certain things. Sadly, most of these "experts" are little more than common bullies and arrogant *** holes who whine, kvetch and show their true colors when they don't get their way.

    This site is not for them. They can stay in the mud pits, the mens rooms, the elitist snob holes they lurk in and ridicule from afar.

    I am sorry that reputations are damaged. Actually, I'm not. Mines been dragged through the mud so many times by pompous crap spewers that it's immune to the event.

    Now, here is the deal.

    You have always had the ability to call someone on their BS.
    Always.

    It is when you chase someone around, disrupt every thread they are in, cross the line from professional behavior to outright bullying that runs you into our rules...many of these rules were written specifically because a few morons couldn't hack it on a site that doesn't let them act like school yard bullies.

    Some will state about BS claims in a professional environment and being ejected. Thats true. It would happen.

    Also ejected would be the person who followed the faker into the john, and out to his car, and down to the burger joint, and called him at home, and hid in the bushes and took pictures to "prove how evil" the faker was.

    Now, let me put this out very clearly, and so blunt, even the hardest of fraud busters will understand it.

    I have no time, patience or room at this in, for the fakes, frauds, liars, scam artists and other such individuals. I also have no time, patience or room for the 'know it all', the 'bully' or the predator.

    If you cannot communicate here in a mature, polite and professional manner, you are not welcome here.
    Period.

    If you are a liar, a fraud, a scam artist, a bully, a troublemaker or an arrogant jackass then you will eventually be ejected from this site. Yes, some of these losers can and do play fast with the rules. But in the end, they have all been booted, usually after an extensive public display that removes all doubt as to who and what they are.

    If you want solid, serious and scholastic discussion, then you must bring it to this table. Neither I, not the staff here can start, nurture, feed and weed, and support it, without the help of those who have the knowledge.

    Yes, whatever you post will be seen, and can be misused. When we find our content being misused, we have and will continue to pursue all legal means to correct that. But if you are afraid that something you say on a web forum will damage or destroy your real world reputation, then maybe you should sell your modem, and get off the damn net. Don't cry about a lack of content, when all one posts are "chat".

    MartialTalk has been, and will continue to be a growing, expanding and positive community. It is one of the largest general arts forums online today, and is on the process of spinning off several additional communities. We will do this, regardless of who comes and goes.

    We would love to make this a hotbed of serious, scholastic discussion on the arts, their histories, etc. But that, must be balanced with our mission to be as accessible as possible, so that we can continue to attract new people curious to the arts, and put them in touch with knowledgeable teachers, while educating them about things like scam artists, poor training practices, etc. One cannot do that, when one appears to be a home for angry angsty teens, or self-important cliquish elitist snobs.

    So, if you are a legit expert, who can communicate like an adult, who can debate politely, and not lower yourself to 'flaming', "trolling" or such.

    Welcome. Please, make yourself at home.

    And if your a liar, a self promoted "master", only here to stir up trouble and disrupt this site for your own juvenile kicks, then be forewarned.
    Your time is limited.
     
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  15. BrandiJo

    BrandiJo Master of Arts

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    Even with all the "problem" that go on this place still rocks, and i would hate to see it shut down or to see silly people cause problems cus theres no reason for the bickering, personly i think if person A dont like something about person B's art spelling ethics or what ever they need to keep it to themselfs...but i supose it isnt that simple is?
     
  16. Carol

    Carol Crazy like a...

    • MartialTalk Mentor
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    Offfergawdssakes.

    All conversation is stimulated. If you think a person is a fool...DO NOT TAKE THE BAIT! Don't talk to them!! IGNORE them!

    Ignored people go away.


    Back away from the reply button.

    Put the mouse down, and nobody will get hurt.
     
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  17. matt.m

    matt.m Senior Master

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    Bob and Don have hashed this debate in a very thourough manner. Both bringing out great points. I agree that some type of something should be done to control trolling. I am happy that an effort is being shown to alleviate this issue.
     
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  18. KenpoEMT

    KenpoEMT Brown Belt

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    I was going to post something like this. Ya beat me to it. So alll I can say is, "Ditto!"
     
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  19. Don Roley

    Don Roley Senior Master

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    As I said elsewhere, calling someone a liar is considered rude, but lying is not.

    And sometimes you have to state really clearly that someone is not telling the truth so that there is no doubt in anyone's mind.

    The problem is that when you wrestle with pigs, everyone gets muddy. Time after time after time. It gets tiring. It drags down the reputation of those that counter falsehoods.

    And I know what you mean about martial arts elitists. There is another forum where people act like Nazis about their way of training and anyone who does not do what they do is treated the same way as Ashida Kim. If you do kata but no sparring, you get more flak than guys that have been arrested. Martialtalk is good about avoiding that. Of course, it is not the only one.

    But when someone mis-quotes or misinterpets something, nothing can happen to them. Those that call them on it run just the same risk of being suspended for calling them on their deception. The moderators will at best tell everyone to be calm without pointing out that one side started things by knowingly mis-interpeting something.

    I really do not know what can be done as long as being deceptive, being caught in a lie, is not considered rude behavior.

    As someone who lives in Japan, this site is great for talking about martial arts as well as getting a Borg toast and debating which 80s video is the best. I deal in Japanese all day, with people that do not share my outlook and upbringing. Sometimes it is nice to deal with folks on line that think like me. I hate to see it become a haven for bad information.
     
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  20. MartialIntent

    MartialIntent Black Belt

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    Bob, this is an absolutely amazing post. You've cut the whole thing open with a very sharp scalpel. I'm glad you've said all this and got everything excised as there's so much unsaid stuff that's taken as norm and, because it's unspoken, as accepted. Kudos to you for just about *everything* you said there [and for having the ******** rocks to say it]!

    Keep 'er lit as we say here!

    Respects!
     
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