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Old June 6, 2013, 09:02 PM   #1
Dragline45
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Why Are Mods So Quick To Close Threads?

I can understand if things get out of hand and people start insulting each other, but if forum members are willing to discuss and keep posting in a thread, why close it? Even if it gets a little off topic, I cant see the reason for closing a thread that members are willing to continue posting in.
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Old June 6, 2013, 09:35 PM   #2
TennJed
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Why Are Mods So Quick To Close Threads?

Everything posted here can be seen by anyone and will be forever (the Internet) the creators of this forum have laid down ground rules for topics. Like it or not we can be a public representative of the gun community.
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Old June 6, 2013, 10:56 PM   #3
Tom Servo
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Without specifying a specific incident, it's hard to give an answer.

That said, there are many reasons for closing threads. A downward spiral of incivility or a prolonged drift off topic can do it. So can technical issues, such as threads in the Gun Show that don't adhere to the rules. Sometimes, there are technical reasons for doing so.

Rich Lucibella, the founder of this forum, gave us a vision of what it should be, and that's embodied in the rules.
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Old June 6, 2013, 11:27 PM   #4
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Not all of what goes on in a thread is visible to the general membership. Sometimes a closure results from a number of deletions or edits when it becomes apparent that trying to keep it on topic will be (or is already) a losing battle.

Some topics are predictable death spirals and there's no need to watch until final impact and detonation before taking action.

Sometimes it's clear that a member (or more than one member) is heading for trouble and a thread will be locked to let things cool down and prevent the need for more drastic action.

That said, if you see a thread that you feel shouldn't have been closed, or that you feel should be reopened, you can feel free to PM the staff member who closed it and ask (preferably politely) about the possibilty of reactivating the thread. If you can make a coherent argument as to why the thread should be reopened, there's a reasonable chance of a positive result.
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Old June 7, 2013, 12:18 AM   #5
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The simple unfortunate answer is that different people want different things in a forum.

Some people value a very level-headed discussion forum where discussion is focused on the forum's subject matter and isn't allowed to deviate much; think of this like maintenance of a bonsai tree.

Others want a forum where almost anything goes, as long as it's tangentially related to the forum's subject matter and there are no outright illegalities or blatant flamewars. Think of this like the forestry service. Intervention is only uncontroversial in a catastrophe, like if a non-native invasive species is brought to the area.

It's an dilemma I think every forum struggles with. There are upsides to both approaches. The first approach has a unique problem in that forum members can't see what's going on as much and therefore can't comment very accurately, but that doesn't mean the first approach is objectively worse.
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Old June 7, 2013, 08:28 AM   #6
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Good question and good responses.
My personal feeling is the mods are overly sensitive to what are sometimes (IMHO) non-issues.
OTOH, it is their baseball. We play the game their way or not at all.
I visit the forum six days a week, I must like it and find it valuable or I wouldn't be here.
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Old June 7, 2013, 09:38 AM   #7
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Quote:
Others want a forum where almost anything goes, as long as it's tangentially related to the forum's subject matter and there are no outright illegalities or blatant flamewars. Think of this like the forestry service. Intervention is only uncontroversial in a catastrophe, like if a non-native invasive species is brought to the area.

I prefer this approach and resent it when threads are shut down because of some moderator’s abhorrence of “thread drift”. I suppose those guys are the neat freaks who love clean desk policies and arrange their staplers and paper clips in rectangular patterns.
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Old June 7, 2013, 09:54 AM   #8
Brian Pfleuger
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No forum can be all things to all people. There are literally dozens of options available to folks who prefer different moderation styles. While every one on staff here certainly wants everybody to participate in and enjoy this forum, we simply can't make everybody happy.

As other have mentioned, specific answer would require specific examples. We don't generally close a thread that "gets a little off-topic", depending on how one might define "little" and sometimes what the topic might be. As an example, in the hunting forum, there was a recent thread that started out asking about shooting hogs with a bow and turned into a discussion of broadheads and accuracy. Technically, that's "off-topic" but it wasn't closed.

Also, keep in mind what JohnKSa said. If staff deletes a post, general membership will have no idea that it ever existed unless they saw it before it was deleted. There have been threads that were closed that had a dozen or more nasty posts deleted. What remains appears to be civil and on-topic but that doesn't mean it WAS when the missing parts were there.
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Old June 7, 2013, 10:55 AM   #9
Dragline45
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I can understand both sides, and due to there being a number of different Mods I guess one persons idea of what should stay open or not differs. But I have seen Mods close threads just because they didn't agree with what was being said. I specifically remember one thread in Tactics and Training where members were commenting how many recreational shooters are better shooters than many people in law enforcement. No one was insulting law enforcement, and the argument being made was if part of your job entails to carry a gun you should be proficient with it, but a mod closed the thread because he didn't like what was being said. Maybe because he was an LEO himself? I have also seen posts in a thread deleted where members were trying to bring light into the conversation and making small quips or jokes related to the topic at hand, which I have no problem with as some of them are pretty funny and make reading the threads that much more enjoyable. I can understand that many people come on here with serious questions and the intent to give and receive accurate information, but as the saying goes "all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy".
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Old June 7, 2013, 11:03 AM   #10
Mike Irwin
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"I prefer this approach and resent it when threads are shut down because of some moderator’s abhorrence of “thread drift”."

OK, you stated your opinion.

To continue with the following, however, is crass, childish, insulting, and completely uncalled for:

"I suppose those guys are the neat freaks who love clean desk policies and arrange their staplers and paper clips in rectangular patterns."

You have no clue how any of us live our lives; you've simply chosen to project your own frustrations on others. That's unacceptable, and in another thread would garner if not an infraction at very least a warning.

If the way TFL is run is that objectionable to you, there are many, many sites on the web that might be more to your liking.


To be perfectly frank and rather brutal about it, there is only ONE person whose opinion matters when it comes to how TFL operates on a daily basis -- Rich Lucibella.

We moderate to HIS vision for what a TFL is, and should be.

We know that chaps the hides for a number of people. It used to chap my hide, as well, but over time I came to accept it and, more importantly, understand it. And now I'm part of it.
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Old June 7, 2013, 11:11 AM   #11
TennJed
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Why Are Mods So Quick To Close Threads?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Slamfire View Post
I prefer this approach and resent it when threads are shut down because of some moderator’s abhorrence of “thread drift”. I suppose those guys are the neat freaks who love clean desk policies and arrange their staplers and paper clips in rectangular patterns.
You "resent it". I think you take the Internet way too serious. In case you haven't noticed there are a lot of things on the Internet. If this isn't your cup of tea you should be able to find something that is. With all do respect you seem like a kid with entitlement issues. No one here (or anywhere) owes you anything.
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Old June 7, 2013, 05:53 PM   #12
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Ok, one post deleted...

On the off chance that it's not already blatantly obvious, the same rules apply in the Site Questions and Tech Support portion of TFL as in any other portion and insulting a TFL mod is no different from insulting any other TFL member.

This discussion is about why threads are closed, and whether or not they are closed too quickly, it is not an open invitation to think up clever (or even not so clever) ways to insult TFL staff members.
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Old June 7, 2013, 07:54 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dragline45
I have seen Mods close threads just because they didn't agree with what was being said. I specifically remember one thread in Tactics and Training where members were commenting how many recreational shooters are better shooters than many people in law enforcement. No one was insulting law enforcement, and the argument being made was if part of your job entails to carry a gun you should be proficient with it, but a mod closed the thread because he didn't like what was being said.
And which thread was that?
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Old June 7, 2013, 08:47 PM   #14
Dragline45
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Quote:
And which thread was that?
http://thefiringline.com/forums/showthread.php?t=508860

The thread was titled Bad advice from military/law enforcement...

Basically the thread was about how just because someone has a military or law enforcement background does not make them qualified to give advice or mean that they are proficient with firearms. The opinions many members shared were not that of the Mod and he closed the thread because of it.

This happens to be the same mod that inspired me to start this thread when I saw he recently closed the Why Shotshells for Snakes? thread, only giving the reason "More Than Enough Bickering".

Last edited by Dragline45; June 7, 2013 at 09:01 PM.
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Old June 7, 2013, 09:10 PM   #15
Shane Tuttle
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Quote:
Gone too far down hill.
The quote above is the exact verbage from the closing post of Staff.

Huh. I had no clue that you can extrapolate such vast information from 5 simple words in order to form a completely different viewpoint such as yours.

Quote:
This happens to be the same mod that inspired me to start this thread when I saw he recently closed the Why Shotshells for Snakes? thread, only giving the reason "More Than Enough Bickering".
Well, then....I guess we will all turn a blind eye to Rule #3 in the future....
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Old June 7, 2013, 09:21 PM   #16
Dragline45
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Based on previous posts of the mod, and closing the thread for no other reason than that it has gone down hill, to me means that he did not agree with or like what was being posted. Maybe I misinterpreted it, but I see no other reason for the thread being closed but that.

In reference to the Shotshell thread, exactly what in rule # 3 was violated?
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Old June 7, 2013, 09:33 PM   #17
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Quote:
The thread was titled Bad advice from military/law enforcement...
This is an example of what I mentioned in my first post on this thread. There are deleted posts on the last page of that thread that contributed to the decision to close.

In the shotshells thread, here are a few of the more obvious things that contributed to the close.

1. The focus turning from firearms to whether or not snakes should be killed.
2. The introduction of religion/God/Bible quotes into the discussion.

AND

Quote:
...exactly what in rule # 3 was violated?
3. One member labeling anyone who disagreed with his view and acted based on their own opinion instead of his as "useless ignorant undeserving pigs".
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Old June 7, 2013, 09:34 PM   #18
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Re: Why Are Mods So Quick To Close Threads?

I will interject my opinion here.

Do I think some threads are closed prematurely? Sure. However, the moderators have their opinions and reasons (and I have never had a moderator give a bad reason for a closure). I have even had an instance where I PM'ed a moderator because there was a statement I wanted to add to a thread and the moderator was more than happy to allow me to. Will that always happen? No, some threads are just done.

These guys do a great job, and they do it without much thanks at all. Coming on here and criticizing and saying that you "resent" their actions is harsh and not necessary. If an Internet forum draws those emotions from you then a reality check is in order. We here on TFL value intellectual, civil discussions. We don't always have to agree, but if you disagree, do it on good terms. The moderators keep things on track, orderly, and clean. If you don't like those qualities from a forum, then there are plenty of other forums on the Internet that flourish with the exact opposite qualities.
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Old June 7, 2013, 09:39 PM   #19
Dragline45
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Quote:
There are deleted posts on the last page of that thread that contributed to the decision to close.
Well then that makes more sense and I did not take that into account, thanks for clearing that up.

Quote:
3. One member labeling anyone who disagreed with his view and acted based on their own opinion instead of his as "useless ignorant undeserving pigs".
Woops, must have missed that one
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