Discussion about posting comments [renamed from Design Review Board]

Posted in

-by dillio1973-

For anyone who wants to expand on this weeks topic question.
‹ Department of Global Health addresses H1N1 Vaccine This weeks poll question. ›
It seems like it may help to
Submitted by snowbird (not verified) on Wed, 11/11/2009 - 08:34.

It seems like it may help to have a section of the forum that would allow either live chat or real time posting instead of having to wait for "Administrative approval"

It wouldn't be incredibly hard to set up an IRC chat client and put the link in the forums, or is that giving the user too much freedom?

It would simply take a disclaimer page saying, "you are leaving a Sheridan Media Page...are you sure you would like to continue"

I feel that it would be easier for the people with nothing constructive to say actually say in instead of bad-mouth the way the system works.

The Java IRC client is very
Submitted by dillio1973 on Wed, 11/11/2009 - 10:47.

The Java IRC client is very popular in many areas. I thought this was a great idea.. putting a channel up on efnet or else where would be cool, and at the same time avoid bandwidth overhead to some extent.

Back on topic?
Submitted by backontopic (not verified) on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 20:31.

Umm, so, how 'bout that review board & the city design standards?
I think a lot of the improvements around Sheridan are nice, I like a lot of the landscaping, the art, ect. I don't really like the massive Home Depot or the talk of putting in yet another McD's (that we really don't need). And I especially dislike the giant bank that went up on Main Street a few years ago, IMO there should have been allot tighter restrictions there, it dosen't fit with Historic Main St at ALL. Ugly thing. The only thing I do like about it is the statue/garden in front of it. Well, that's how I feel about the matter... Anyone else have comments about the origonal topic of this thread? LOL ;)

One, I agree that bank looks
Submitted by dillio1973 on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 23:34.

One, I agree that bank looks so out of place it is not even funny.. As for the Home Depot in time people of Sheridan may come to appreciate the simple fact that people of Sheridan now have access to a common mans builder’s emporium. As a home owner who likes to do projects around the house I kind of like it.. But in respect to a comment another poster made, it does not and never will have the personal touch appeal of the hardware stores we grew up with.. It is a trade off and the consumer drove it in this direction..

Actually spoke with one of
Submitted by RJones on Wed, 11/11/2009 - 11:13.

Actually spoke with one of the engineers that designed that bank who is a long time sheridan resident,he refused to even go to the grand opening party that was held privately for the companies that built the bank.The firm he works for needed the money even though they didn't agree with the project.Typical of sheridan,they had to tear down a perfectly good building like the XL,similar to tearing down central middle school for no reason.Then complain about not having room for office space rentals etc.

If the city council was doing their job and looking out for the health of the community,they would never ok these box stores.There's plenty of examples throughout the country where communities have said no to places like home depot and walmart.These box stores send their money directly out of town and even though they employee people,the employees spend large percentages of their pay within the box store and it of course is shipped right out of town.What few tax dollars are brought in by these stores is then spent on infrastructure to keep them afloat.

N. Main is a prime example.Millions of dollars being dumped into it,because it was basically abandoned after walmart showed up and money was diverted to coffeen.

I did a study of Walmart
Submitted by dillio1973 on Wed, 11/11/2009 - 11:36.

I did a study of Walmart business strategies a while back. They have interesting contingency plans for communities who don't go along with the walmart tune. They would have moved the location just outside the city limits.

Every body has to be on
Submitted by RJones on Wed, 11/11/2009 - 18:38.

Every body has to be on board including the county to keep walmart out.In most cases they can't build in the county,because there's no infrastructure such as sewer and water.

Walmart at one time said they'd never come into a community that didn't want them.Well they tried to move into a east coast vacation town for the wealthy and got shut down,the city council actually did their job for once.Walmarts response was to sue and it backfired on them and they lost.

Walmart is notorious for cornering the workforce of a town after they run everybody else out and there's no jobs.A town in texas actually had a computer manufacturer build a plant in their town and paid more then walmart.Walmart couldn't keep employees,so they tried to sue the computer company and lost.

I'm not sure exactly what
Submitted by Steve Sisson on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 22:11.

I'm not sure exactly what the creator of this topic was trying to do with the title. It was completely unnecessary to create an open forum topic about the Design Review Board when there was already an open discussion about this under the poll. I have renamed the title of this thread to match what appears to be the real intent behind creating it: To discuss Sheridan Media's comment policy.

The posts regarding this week's poll question will probably be moved into the poll thread where where they really belong.

No it was not an "Open
Submitted by dillio1973 on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 23:25.

No it was not an "Open Discussion" your team set forth rules that said any comments that were off topic would be deleted.. I felt this was wrong but understood, that is why I created the same topic that that would not be policed for off topic comments. The fact that you renamed the topic is really kind of sad. I noticed a while back that people who were posting under the "forums area" were not being included into the "Recent Comments". Part of my intent was also to draw attention to the original forums area, and I accomplished that objective I think. Forums can be a very valuable resource for media administrators to draw from.. However when the same administrators view it as a "service provided" when in fact it is the people of the forum group who are providing the service that is yet another sad step in my mind..

I also don’t think I’m alone as a few others have commented about the "Off Topic Comment Removal" that Sheridan Media made on this week’s poll question. Out of respect I created a thread that accommodate off topic idea and thought.

I am glad to see this part
Submitted by Steve Sisson on Wed, 11/11/2009 - 10:16.

I am glad to see this part of the site getting used, so yes, job well done.

However, rather than create a thread that intentionally goes off topic, I suggest creating a topic about the actual subject you wish to discuss. There isn't a need to create a forum topic with exactly the same title as one of the polls. If something branches out from that discussion which is not directly related to the original topic, then it would be appropriate to create a new topic about that in the forum.

Speaking to the poll
Submitted by dillio1973 on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 18:33.

Speaking to the poll question, I would like to hear what others think about "Review Board's standards being too restrictive".. Is the position of the review board a warranted position? Could we get by with a few common sense standards that go under review every few years? What kind of tax dollars go into creating this “review board”

Well dillio,basically what
Submitted by RJones on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 20:41.

Well dillio,basically what your seeing is the typical passing of the buck by council etc.,who would rather have a special board in place rather then make decisions themselves.Not only that,but these boards are appointments in most cases.The public has no say in who is on the board.The mayor and his friends make those decisions.On top of this,kinskey got rid of the full time city attorney,so council has no access to legal advice and neither do these boards.An attorney would address the majority of legal issues immediately and render legal advice on the spot.Ordinances and state statute are the legal grounds that make or break these decisions made by boards.The boards themselves are toothless and meaningless.

You'll see in sheridan,that appointments to these special boards,work as a resume for these chronies to use as credentials to appy for other boards or run for elected positions.We've currently got a county commissioner with no credentials other then limited service on a college board and now that he's elected he's done nothing but show up occasionally to meetings.

You asked what kind of tax dollars go into these type of boards.I'd encourage you to look at forward sheridan.Here's a select group of business men who are trying to make decisions we all get to live with and they're getting $100k of sheridan tax dollars to operate a year.The building that Mr. Patterson was illegally building is slated to house this group.So you can imagine the chances of it not being built when you already have $100k of city money being funneled into the group.

So why not get a citizen's
Submitted by dillio1973 on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 23:15.

So why not get a citizen's initiative on the ballot to reverse these counter productive steps ?

Submitted by Anonymous on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 14:58.

This is the same type of standard post submit/ approved that is used on many sites. This doesn't look like editing public opinion...look around

No this type of approval
Submitted by RJones on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 15:43.

No this type of approval isn't used on "many" sites.The reason being,is most sites are interested in getting as many posts as possible and this format promotes getting as few responses as possible.

Submitted by Steve Sisson on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 16:13.

"this format promotes getting as few responses as possible."

That is not necessarily true.

The type of approval varies depending on the way the forums are structured. Myspace allows posts by members of discussion groups to immediately appear in their forums, but also allows comments posted on profile pages to enter an approval queue if the "owner" of that page so desires. CNN uses the approval queue method exclusively on their site. In general, sites that require user registration allow posts to appear immediately, and sites which allow any viewer to post use an approval queue.

If the immediate-post method requires user registration, the registration process itself can discourage a person from commenting. If the approval queue allows non-registered viewers to comment, that can encourage comments.

There are pros and cons to each method, and we are getting a feel for how this works with our particular site.

"this format promotes
Submitted by dillio1973 on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 16:07.

"this format promotes getting as few responses as possible.
", I dont see how you come to that conclution. As steve said, they are trying a few different things, lets just see how it works out. I personaly think it will be a difficult task creating a forum group in side of a microcosm community such as Sheridan, but I think it is a valuable asset.

I came to that conclusion
Submitted by RJones on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 18:55.

I came to that conclusion easily.First people want to see there opinion posted after they write it,not after admin decides to post it.Secondly,alot of people will simply avoid posting period if they have to wait for someone else to decide for them.So then you're left with a manipulated response to questions that doesn't even begin to accurately portray the publics opinion,but rather the opinion of a select few and with a sight like this,it becomes that of the advertisers or public officials opinion..

Of course we could simply
Submitted by Steve Sisson on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 16:30.

Of course we could simply not allow comments at all on our site, but I hope allowing comments will promote some productive discussions about current issues.

Unfortunately, the forum on the old Sheridan Media site typically contained a lot of material that I think most Sheridan residents should have been embarrassed for others to see.

Some people seem to lack the responsibility to be both anonymous AND respectful. Anonymity brings out the worst in some people, and I would like to discourage that. There is value to emphasizing quality posts in addition to quantity. I would rather have three thoughtful posts on the site than 30 knee-jerk complaints, and I imagine most readers would too.

Embarrassed for others to see
Submitted by D. Trujillo (not verified) on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 18:09.

I would rather read a 1000 uncensored posts and come to my own conclusion then read 3 posts that are only allowed according to someone's personal interpretation of the subject. Why would anyone in thier right mind want to read filtered or censored posts? Doesnt CNN already do that? Doesnt the United States government already do that? Doesnt the Sheridan press already do that? Personally I am not embarrassed by anything I post, whether it is right or wrong. These posts are oppinions not law. Unique to the individual.

The only result of censorship is to forward the agenda of the few who are in control. This type of forum will not provoke or inspire any positive or thoughtful discussion. It will only provoke what the controller allows. One person who speaks for themself says more then 10,000 who do not speak.

We do not remove posts
Submitted by Steve Sisson on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 18:26.

We do not remove posts merely because they present opinions contradictory to our own. We have only removed posts that were unnecessarily disrespectful, offensive or blatantly off topic.

When I mentioned embarrassing posts, I was talking about posts using derogatory, offensive language and basically validating all of the stereotypes of "backwards rednecks" that live in Wyoming. These posts paint our community in an extremely negative light, and I want our website to positively promote the community. I do not want our website to be a cesspool of ignorance and bigotry, and posts that exemplify this will not be allowed.

As I mentioned in another reply, our primary agenda with this website is to gain substantial regular visitors, so yes, we will edit content that we feel is counteractive to this goal. You seem to have a very liberal definition of "censorship" and "agenda." By your standards, there are probably no for-profit websites that do not practice "censorship" to further their "agenda."

Correct me if I'm wrong, but it seems to me that you and I are currently involved in exactly the type of discussion you claim will not happen on this site.

Maybe there is light
Submitted by D. Trujillo (not verified) on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 18:56.

I have never heard of anything positive that grows from censorship. The "agenda" I write of are ones that no one can verify, they are hidden. Only known to the individual. My agenda will always be known. Such as my concern of censorship of these posts.

I would read hundreds of posts several times and never considered Sheridan, Wyoming to be stereotypical in any way because of the comments of a few citizens. I know only a minority would post and of that minority a smaller percentage would be negative. Cesspool of ignorance and bigotry, pretty heavy. I cannot comment as whether some are redknecks or just republicans. I would flag a post that I did not want my 12 year old to read.

Regardless, time will tell. I did have my doubts that even my posts were going to be banned. Paranoid, maybe so, but definite concern after you banned Reality Check. Some posts will be great and the ones that are not great, will not be allowed and no one will ever know. I do believe the public is informed and intelligent enough to police the comments. Maybe there is light at the end of tunnel.

I don't know about your
Submitted by dillio1973 on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 15:30.

I don't know about your overall exposure to forum positing, however as a member of no less then 15 or so forum groups this may not fit the standard used on "many sites" but who cares.. Now with that said, I understand why they are looking to better the forum group. I only hope that we can avoid censorship of oppinions. Sometimes a person may post something that to others would be viewd as off topic. However to that person who made the comment it HAS "relevance" In that situation it is best to ask the person to connect the dots and expand.. At that point if the person can not link it back into the original topic you can then make your own conclustion.

personal attacks
Submitted by dillio1973 on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 14:57.

The issue with "personal attacks" is that is a very slippery slope of extreme censorship. When you post community questions, and then don't allow people to comment about others who may or may not be directly involved with the poll question the poll becomes bias.

re: personal attacks
Submitted by Steve Sisson on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 15:19.

You are correct. However, negative opinions can be voiced without name-calling, foul language or libel. Further, if a single user continually attempts to hijack threads to further post negative comments about someone, it indicates a personal vendetta, which we cannot allow.

Blantent Censorship
Submitted by D. Trujillo (not verified) on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 16:45.

1. Who decides what is appropriate?
2 If you or a few others decide what is appropriate or not, by what and whose standards or laws are you going by?
3.How do you know what the so called public posts is truth or lie or just a difference of oppinion?
4. Is this an open forum or not?
5. Why wouldnt the people that control the forum only choose posts that fit a specific agnenda? Maybe let a few slide through as they see fit to misguide or guide the topic.

This forum seemed to be operating just fine without total censorship. Freedom of Speech is more important then foul language, name-calling, etc. Now that these posts will be controlled by a select few, I will always be wondering what was censored and who was banned from the site. There is no human way of being objective or fair. This is just blantent censorship. I am sure a nice rational response can be conjured.

Submitted by Steve Sisson on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 18:08.

1 - As a general rule, we have allowed posts as long as no other users flag them as inappropriate. Anything with foul language or libelous statements was taken off as soon as it was discovered. This general policy has not changed. However, we will now be able to block unacceptable posts before they make it on the site.

2 - The standards are based on a general consensus of those participating. Standards are different depending on the people involved. A topic that may be perfectly acceptable in a porn site would likely be considered unacceptable on our site. Because this website is affiliated with a radio broadcast group, content that would not be allowed on the radio will also not be allowed on our site.

3 - Truth is verifiable fact.

4 - It is open and regulated by the participating members and site administrators. It is not, and never has been, a total free-for all. We own and operate the site, and we have ultimate control over what content is allowed. This has always been the case.

5 - Of course we have an agenda. One specific goal is to have our website frequently visited by as many people as possible. Therefore, we don't allow posts that would offend or alienate a vast majority of those in our intended audience.

The only change is in our attempt to be proactive about offensive posts. The FCC disagrees with you when it comes to free speech vs. foul language and this website is operated by a company bound by FCC regulations.

Unless you are sure that you saw EVERYTHING that was ever submitted to this site, then by your definition you have always been the victim censorship on our part. For example, if you went to bed at 10pm, and someone posted something at midnight which was then removed before you next visited the site, wasn't the end result exactly the same as it will be now? In either case, you never saw the post in question, and you have no idea what you missed. Since this site was launched, there have probably been many posts that were edited or removed before you got a chance to see them. I don't see the logic in starting to worry about it now.

Flagging posts is a joke.You
Submitted by RJones on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 18:49.

Flagging posts is a joke.You end up with some whiner that didn't get their way or can't handle the truth flagging a post just to get rid of it.

Sheridanmedia is a business designed to make money,most of it through advertising and you can't have a forum that accurately covers real community issues,without making your advertisers mad at you.Simply because a percentage of your advertisers are the problem with the community.
A prime example would be last weeks poll question.The individual mentioned the most in that thread,has a problem with letting the cat out of the bag and has even complained to the local newspaper when their family members make it into police section of the press.

This site is regulated by the administrators and their customers,the participating members have little or no control over anything.Profanity isn't an issue either,there hasn't been any profanity on here since the change to the new boards months ago.

Obama would love to censor the internet,but as it stands the FCC has nothing to do with forums.These forums have even made their way into court cases for supposed slander and the cases were thrown out.

When posts were flagged, we
Submitted by Steve Sisson on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 19:10.

When posts were flagged, we would review them and if we agreed that the post in question crossed a line, we would either edit the offending passage out, leaving the rest of the post intact, or remove the post entirely. There were also cases were we just unflagged the post and left it alone. A post was never automatically removed just because someone flagged it.

Profanity was still a problem after the new site was launched. The most recent issue was last weekend, where a post under this story was edited due to language.

The FCC makes it the responsibility of the broadcaster to control the content of their programming, including foul language spoken by members of the public who appear on the air. This is why most talk shows include a delay which can be used to remove language spoken by callers before it makes it to air. The infamous Janet Jackson incident is an example of action taken against a broadcaster even though the offending moment was not created by any employee of that company. If CBS can be fined when Janet Jackson violates FCC regulations during one of their programs, then a radio station can be fined if a caller violates the regulations.

People posting comments on our website could be considered the same as people calling into one of our radio programs. While we take no responsibility for opinions presented by public contributions to our content, we still try to take reasonable measures in keeping the language family-friendly and the content similarly appropriate. While this may not be specifically directed by the FCC, it is the policy we have chosen.

I thought FCC generally
Submitted by dillio1973 on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 19:22.

I thought FCC generally regulated over the air transmition. The internet is a wire line service, and the communication on does have a more broad protection to free speech. It's kind of like satellite radio, the FCC has little control over the communication in this area, that's why a lot of radio talent left over the air radio for sat radio. I think it would be a big mistake for ota radio to make the same mistake twice with it's approach to the internet.

I don't know all the workings of radio and the FCC but that would be my layman perspective..

Yes, not all of the rules
Submitted by Steve Sisson on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 19:55.

Yes, not all of the rules that apply to radio broadcasts directly translate to the internet. However, this is a website owned by broadcast company. I don't personally know exactly how the FCC treats that, but our policy is to apply the same general rules of decency to both our on air content and our web content. As I said before, this may not be specifically required by the FCC, but it is the position we have taken.

Where is my post
Submitted by D. Trujillo (not verified) on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 19:15.

Was it banned? and why? thanks for the info.

My bad
Submitted by D. Trujillo (not verified) on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 20:01.

Now that the posts are being monitored, the wait time is alot longer. I guess I was used to the speed of earlier postings, my bad. Strange, responding to a post that I wrote myself.

Was the log on prompt also discontinued?

Yes. My primary concern
Submitted by Steve Sisson on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 20:08.

My primary concern when this idea was first presented was that although this isn't a genuine live chat service, there are typically discussions that occur in near real-time which could be halted in their tracks because of the delay now required for approval, especially outside of normal business hours. This is one of the things we will have to evaluate in the coming weeks.

Some log in prompts may not be appearing now that the approval queue is being used. However, there is always a log in link at the bottom-right of the footer on every page.

"but as it stands the FCC
Submitted by dillio1973 on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 19:07.

"but as it stands the FCC has nothing to do with forums.These forums have even made their way into court cases for supposed slander and the cases were thrown out."

I agree this is 100% true however if the person who funds this board wants to have their rules in line with the FCC then that is their prerogative. The only way around it is to create your own forum, and put up with all the adds that go along with doing that.

"complained to the local newspaper when their family members make it into police section of the press."

This is the kind of thing that puts these families in a bad light, and makes the community lash out at them.. In my mind they bring this on themselves for not accepting responsability.

Mr. Sisson is there a reason
Submitted by RJones on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 19:45.

Mr. Sisson is there a reason why the thread on Selection of the new Police Chief was removed. This topic really needs to be covered on here.

You have Kinskey along with councilman bigelow and for whatever reason the gillette police chief deciding who the next police chief of sheridan is going to be and the public is being kept in the dark.The press is even weighing in on this.

Why don't we get some private messaging options on this forum also.


I don't think this thread
Submitted by Steve Sisson on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 20:01.

I don't think this thread has been removed. If it's the one I'm thinking of it is still under the relevant news story here.

I'm not sure if our current software provides a messaging feature, but we'll look into it.

"Why don't we get some
Submitted by dillio1973 on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 19:56.

"Why don't we get some private messaging options on this forum also."

This was an intersting idea, one thing I liked about the old Sheridan Media site was that every user had a small profile page. on there we were allowed to post our email, in addtion to that we could post our IM id's .. Just a thought. Now whenever I click on a user name I get an access denied. No big deal, I just thought it was part of the new site.

I agree with that..
Submitted by dillio1973 on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 15:31.

I agree with that..

Pretty sad when you have a
Submitted by RJones on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 14:04.

Pretty sad when you have a media entity,screening the opinions of the public,because those opinions are to factual for their comfort.

re: pretty sad
Submitted by Steve Sisson on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 14:49.

We are trying out various methods of comment posting to see which method is easiest to use and provides the most productive environment for discussion. We have had some issues over the past few weeks of people violating our usage agreement (using offensive language, swear words, derogatory name-calling, personal attacks, etc.), and those posts would sometimes be published on the site for quite some time before someone would notice it and flag it as inappropriate. While we take no direct responsibility for the opinions of our website viewers, this forum is owned and managed by us and we do therefore have some responsibility to prevent unnecessarily offensive material from being published. A system requiring us to retroactively edit inappropriate posts is inefficient in several ways.

This week, we are trying an alternate method where all submitted comments are placed in an approval queue prior to appearing on the site. The advantages to this system include allowing everyone (not just registered users) to comment, and it removes the need for an automatic filter which can often block legitimate posts as often as genuine spam. Using an approval queue prevents posts containing foul language or that otherwise do not meet our usage terms from being published in the first place. The primary disadvantage is a longer delay before appropriate posts appear on the site.

We are evaluating the pros and cons of the various systems available and have not yet decided on which method to stick with.

I don't think the screening
Submitted by dillio1973 on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 14:41.

I don't think the screening was intentional; I kind of viewed it as internet adequate. I’m guessing that what Sheridan Media was trying to prevent, is referred to thread hijacking. However in the spirit of open discussion I thought it may be interesting to have an OPEN thread in order to really what was on the people’s minds.

re: screening
Submitted by Steve Sisson on Tue, 11/10/2009 - 15:01.

Several off topic comments were removed from the Design Review Board poll. However, some of these were also part of a continuing series of attacks against a particular person, and as a result one of the parties involved has also been blocked from posting.

The mind pendulum

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