Standing Orders (Forum Moderation)

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Seadog

War Hero
Moderator
#1
The Current Affairs board exists to promulgate, discuss and /or comment on stories in the news, local (to the initiating poster), national and international. Gossip, rumour, dits and idle banter belong in the Quarterdeck or even Lil's (for those who want a more gloves off / gobbing off style). You don't need to be a graduate of the Advanced Command and Staff Course to participate but it is hoped that the board will reach an level similar to that on ARRSE. Civil, relevant, considered, lively, informed, serious. ARRSE is regularly referred to in the media, it would be nice if Rum Ration achieves similar kudos. A link to the story is usually appropriate.

Part Time Pongo has moderated the ARRSE Current Affairs board for several years and he can be credited with creating an environment in which the right kind of people want to participate. I defer to his experience and moderation policy on this forum too.

OPSEC. Keep our secrets secret. PERSEC. No names no cap tallies unless the name is already public knowledge.

Keep it civil, keep it relevant, keep it out of the gutter. Contrary to the notion of certain posters, neither Rum Ration nor ARRSE are democracies where free speech is sacred. They are the COs’ train sets and they rely on the moderators to keep them out of the brown and smelly. Those of us still serving prefer our interviews with coffee. If PTP or I are not around and another Mod steps in to comment on contentious posts, please be guided by them.

The following is cut and paste on policy on certain news stories involving servicemen. It's PTP's. It's mine too. It applies to all forums, not just Current Affairs.

We cannot allow discussion on cases either pending, or in session, in Military courts, or concerning Military personnel in Civil courts. We do this, because of the unique makeup of this forum , and there is a very real danger, that someone will rush to be helpful or damaging , and open us to a charge of sub-judice or behaviour prejudicial to any proceedings. We also have a high number of journalists who may repeat accusations or statements made.

For this reason, we allow no discussion on pending or in session Courts-Martial or Civilian Court proceedings against service personnel, until the final outcome. This policy has been noticed, and it's one of the reasons MoD stay off our backs.


Rum Ration and ARRSE are fairly unique in ICRs , as there is a very high percentage of people who well may know the accused , and misguidedly or not , want to say what they know. Which is fatal with the press hovering about.
PM me (or PTP) if a post gives cause for concern but give me time each day to log on and read through the posts. You can also email (not PM) the COs direct >[email protected]< if it can't wait. I hope to warn posters by PM if their post is heading for the cyber gash bag so that they have the opportunity to reconsider and edit/delete themselves but there may be reasons that preclude that courtesy.

Keep me informed by PM if there is anything you think I should look at, anything I could do differently, fairer, better.
 

Seadog

War Hero
Moderator
#2
PartTimePongo added his view.

I'd like Current Affairs to be just that. Current Affairs that affect us as serving personnel , Regular and Reserve. I'd like topics of a sufficient gravitas , to really bring out the best in posters, and for people to come away from the debate or thread thinking "Damn me, I learnt something there" Especially the gold braided grown-ups.

Some posters have already demonstrated a quite astonishing grasp of analysis, cause and effect. Others however have not, but it takes all sorts.

CA is not there for "Cat up a tree get's it's chebs out and claims asylum" stories. Unfortunately , we're slightly hamstrung by not having a 'tabloid' type forum here, but Quarterdeck seems to be taking on that role.

Current Affairs on RR is not "Just another CA board on the Internet". The intention is to have it become THE Naval related CA forum on the Internet.

People criticise Seadogs' seemingly draconian moderation. Personally I'm all for it.

In the early days of Arrse, I opted for a draconian approach to the CA forum, and got more flak for it, than the Stringbag pilot on the final run-in against Bismarck. "Why won't you let us rubbish Qu*ers, P*kis and Nig-n*gs , my freedom of speech is infringed , this is supposed to be an Army board, that's how we talk you fcuking gay stab cnut etc etc etc"

Strangely, 99.9% of all complaints on moderation came from never served civilians, or people who'd been out of the Forces since getting paid off by Wellington.

I kept getting flak, and I stuck to the task and vision I saw, which was a forum that would be taken seriously, and regarded as worthy enough to be regarded highly.

I'm not saying I've done that, but Arrse Current Affairs is now read by No.10 , Members of the Lords and MP's, Senior Military Chiefs and frequently quoted in the Media.Some of the contributors we've picked up, are household names in the Forces, or experten in their fields.

Did Arrse save CGS's bacon? I'm not saying we did, but the anger of Soldiers was first highlighted on Arrse, and we led the field in making damn sure the world knew British soldiers were dischuffed.

To get the forum, up, running and respected, which keeps the less open minded gold braiders off our backs, we need to be seen to be being adult, AND contributing items of worth, that have the Mahogany warship sailors thinking "This is an asset"

Seadog has taken to this task , and laid his stall out plain to see. This forum is going to be taken seriously , and that means a shakedown cruise.

Moderation is difficult at the best of times, it is certainly not a popularity contest , and you will never please all of the people all of the time.

I'll delete bone posts, I'll delete posts with excessive profanity. I'll delete posts that are rascist. I will PM a poster, if I think he is unaware of the rules.

I won't PM a poster who is patently taking the piss. He or she already knows why that thread or post got chopped, and whining about "Freedom of speech" is not going to cut it.

I will publicly announce why a thread is closed, especially if that poster took the piss into the bargain, though 9 times out of 10 , the reason is self-evident.

There is one subject that we are not going to be swayed on. Discussion of ongoing courts-martial, or civil cases involving service personnel. I would have thought the reasons for this, on a forum used by serving personnel were obvious.

If you want salicious gossip , stick to the media, but we are not going to open ourselves up to a mis-trial or sub-judice , therefore all posts related to these matters will be culled.

Seadog may seem heavy handed, but his approach is far lighter than mine. He is also new to this, and doesn't have the nearly 5 years I have on Arrse, co-operation is always better than confrontation.

Seadog will continue to moderate in the way he does, with my support until such time as a lighter touch is required, because the vast majority of posters 'get it'.

RR CA is going to be a forum of note, and it is going to make people proud to be associated with it, as posters are on Arrse CA.

So instead of complaining about 'bone moderation' , look at the quality of the posts you're putting in.

More quality = less moderation , and the chance that the points you are making, will be picked up and acted on by the grown ups.

There are many Naval forums on the interweb, there is only ONE Rum Ration CA forum which can and will become the First and Best point of reference for matters concerning the mood on the messdecks and in the wardrooms.


Make it so.
 

Seadog

War Hero
Moderator
#3
Bad CO has his say.

Rum Ration, Aims Policy and Complaints Procedure

From which:

PRINCIPLES

1. Although we have no issues with challenging the "official" viewpoint we do not wish to bring the wrath of the authorities down upon the site.

3. Serious boards

Current Affairs, Finance, Naval History, Charity

Our serious boards are heavily moderated as we aim to keep them sensible and relevant for those who wish to engage in serious discussion. The following are not tolerated:

a. Taking thread off topic
b. Moderate swearing / abuse of other users.
c. Non-contributory posting ie pointless ranting.

There is a thread in Site Issues for those who wish to take issue or commend.
 
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