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An Open Letter to Steel Rat

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  • #274004

    Serrano
    Participant

    Dear Sir,

    You undoubtedly have avery difficult job running this site. Though I’ve never visited it,from the comments made by other forum members, you also have achallenging job managing the circus on the Gringoes Face Book page. And then you have your own personal as well as professional life,which I have no idea of what that’s comprised of. It’s a lot tojuggle, isn’t it?

    Therefore, I dounderstand, when receiving complaints about a post, you probablydon’t have time to perform the due diligence necessary to considerthe source of the complaint. For example, when they joined theforum, how many posts the complainer has logged since they joined theforum, the content of their previous posts, and their overallcontributionto the communitythat comprises this forum.

    It isa well known fact to the long term members of this forum that theinvasion of ‘sock puppets’ has greatly diminished the integrity ofthis site. These sock puppets have one purpose: to distract. Thatdistraction comes as ridicule, as harassment, as name calling, ascontinual prodding of one specific forum member in order to provoke them. It often continues to the point where someone has then had enough,and in a moment of irritation, breaks a ‘house rule’, and is thensuspended. All this occurs, and continues to occur, because of lackof sufficient moderation.

    I amall for free speech, and difference of opinion. Debate is a healthyand thought-provoking activity, and at times, even entertaining. Forexample, I’ve presently been enjoying the banter being exchanged betweenSquiddie, Fila, and Grantham, on the topic of how to help the poor. Each member has strong opinions, but none of them are calling eachother “moron”, and stating that the others opinion is “garbage”,or “crap”, as was recently the case with Terry_2 and 38 Special.

    I’m agrown adult, in fact probably older than you Steel Rat. Name callingis irrelevant to me, and it only reveals the maturity level of thosehurling such juvenile statements. Yet it creates a distraction,particularly in threads where the topic is more specific, such as theimportance of US expats needing to be fully aware of what is entailedin filing an FBAR, and the recently enacted FATCA. Granted, thisdoesn’t apply to everyone on the forum, such as Brits or Canadians,but it is an issue that warrants discussion (without distraction).

    WhatI’m about to say is not to blow my own horn, but I did a littleresearch today. Consider for a moment, please sir, in the ExchangeRate threads of 2011, 2012, 2013, and the Yanks with Bank Accountsthreads, to name a few, all initiated by yours truly, there have beena little over 200,000 hits. That number means ‘readership’. I nowask you, compare that to threads created by Terry_2 (if any exist), and the amountof readership that resulted from them. What does this tell you?

    Yetthe initiation of a thread isn’t in and of itself a complete litmustest. AFIK, Esprit rarely started a thread, yet his contributions tothe forum were greatly appreciated and enjoyed not only by me, but bythe forum at large (except perhaps the one who might have been the object at that moment, oflashes by Esprit’s whip of exquisite sarcasm). And I know I’m not alone inbeing glad that he has returned, even if under a different name. AFIK, Grads has never initiate a thread, but his zen-like posts,often just one sentence, injects a sense of calm and reflection intothe topic at hand. AFIK, Sven, with his in excess of 10,000 posts,initiated very few threads, yet his legal insight has provenvaluable time and time again, not to just me, but to others on here. Again, if the time is spent to perform some due diligence, it’s quiteeasy to discern who are the time-wasters, and who aren’t, on thisenterprise of yours.

    Forexample, from day one as a forum member, 38 Special was ragging onforum member hpeak13, seeking to provoke him. It was obvious toeveryone on here that while maybe ‘newly joined’, 38 was hardly newto this forum. Several members complained, openly on the forum, andby pm to you, so it should have been immediately clear to you that38’s intent was only to distract, harass, and provoke. And you didwhat, a slap on the hand? Come on amigo, open your eyes! Why not flush these time-wasters right away, and be done with it?

    Theforum is already on life-support. IMHO, either step up yourmoderation of the site, or just pull the plug. There is a certainindividual out there, the same one who has had an ax to grind with meon this forum, for many years now, who wants to see your site fail. I don’t. If I did, why would I waste my time with the contributionsI’ve made over the years? Neither do the long term members on here,who also have made many valuable contributions.

    Sowhat’s it going to be Steel Rat, step up your game, or…?

    Respectfully,

    Gringo.Serrano,formerly Gringo.Floripa (2010), as well as Manezinho (2006)

  • #274006

    hoganti
    Member

    Agree with everything said, but to add….what is the point in banning someone if they can just create a new account? Threats of suspension/banning have zero effect if someone can just create another account. As GS said, you surely have a lot going on. Just banning people doesn’t really lighten your workload nor is it in anyway a solution to the problem.

    I left this group for awhile because of the number of fake accounts and joined the FB group…but holy hell that place is quite hard to stomach….it seems as if you have two so-so forums for people to interact on about life here. Maybe pull the plug on one and give your full attention to the other. But halfway isn’t working….
    Rspectfully,
    hpeak13, formerly and still hpeak13 because I am not old like GS and never lost my login info LOL
  • #274007

    doctorlili
    Member

    Agree

  • #274012

    Andrewfroboy
    Participant

    1

  • #274015

    kenalag
    Member

    I agree.
    The only way to keep the minimum Brazilians out is to proof that you are gringo…as this site is from gringos for gringos…
    Let’s go back to passport control!!
    I got a lot of great Infos from here and try to give back as good as I can.
    But I also see quality decreasing and don’t want the same niveau limbo here as I see on the Facebook group.

  • #274017

    graham
    Participant

    …a fair admonition. Abusive posters create a poor site environmentand also tend to foster ambivalence among the active posters, those who are thefoundation of forum feedback and advice – and especially light hearted entertainment for some lifers here. Among this user base, policing these occurrences isbecoming almost a bigger issue than the bad elements which disrupt. Some adjustments in management style seem would seem to be in the best interests of the forum√¢‚Ǩ¬¶unless theforum, in itself, does not have that much overall importance to the site of gringoes.com.

    Good luckSr. S.R.

    Grads2015-03-12 14:34:38

  • #274018

    ffm
    Member

    ClapI agree!

    And in a world which sometimes an “internet fight” can be murky, this one is black and white. This Terry_2, 38 Special, whatever his name made ad hominem attacks which seemed completely out of the blue on GS. I don’t have a dog in this fight but this case was strange. It felt like it was personal and had nothing to do with the content of the thread.
    As for trolls, I don’t care much. Sometimes they can be entertaining. Let’s clean up the spam though because apparently the forum software has the capability to do so by “flicking a switch”.
    Hey Rat, if it’s too much for you, why don’t you delegate?
  • #274022

    Anonymous

    add me to the list here. various attacks directly to posters, whether recently Hpeak or GS or farther back, various of us through PMs, are not acceptable.

  • #274023

    Marc Maserati
    Participant

    Mr Steel Rat,

    This websitehas given me very useful information over the past few years; something withoutwhich I would really probably still be in the US. Thanks for having the insightto create this website forum!

    The forum has helped me from just learningabout my options in coming to Brazil, what to do to become legal as well ashelping me now figure out how to manage my VITEM to VIPER transfer. The site does offer useful content which ismostly provided by the people mentioned above and others. The forum hasvalue which can grow if monitored correctly. Otherwise your content willbe forced to leave.

    What detracts from the site is the constant harassmentof current well established members by much newer forum members who seem tohave appeared from nowhere, have many insulting things to say and a memorywhich far exceeds their joined date and “points”. A few peopleare actively trying to break what you have created and it’s a real shame. However it is done, this forum needs active supervision.

    Regardless of the approach, I would ask you to make some changesto this website such that the harassment of forum members from these”mysterious” newer members will stop.

    -Marc

  • #274026

    ffm
    Member

    [QUOTE=mmaser]

    Mr Steel Rat,

    This websitehas given me very useful information over the past few years; something withoutwhich I would really probably still be in the US. Thanks for having the insightto create this website forum!

    The forum has helped me from just learningabout my options in coming to Brazil, what to do to become legal as well ashelping me now figure out how to manage my VITEM to VIPER transfer. The site does offer useful content which ismostly provided by the people mentioned above and others. The forum hasvalue which can grow if monitored correctly. Otherwise your content willbe forced to leave.

    What detracts from the site is the constant harassmentof current well established members by much newer forum members who seem tohave appeared from nowhere, have many insulting things to say and a memorywhich far exceeds their joined date and “points”. A few peopleare actively trying to break what you have created and it’s a real shame. However it is done, this forum needs active supervision.

    Regardless of the approach, I would ask you to make some changesto this website such that the harassment of forum members from these”mysterious” newer members will stop.

    -Marc

    [/QUOTE]

    They aren’t new and they didn’t come out of nowhere! You ever notice they happen to mention members who have not been active for years?
    Tres houses- Pms?!?!?! Really?? WTF! That’s next level craziness!
  • #274029

    hoganti
    Member

    Abbot….i even got fb stalked by a very well made fake profile.
    Anyone PM this thread to SR? Be nice to have a bavk and forth discussion. I also like the idea of delegation…..maybe have 3 mods so power is not with just one person? Just s thought….

  • #274034

    agri2001
    Participant

    I totally agree with everything that has been said, up to a point.

    I think some trolls should be allowed unlimited access so we can beat up on them.
    After all that`s what makes this site a bit entertaining besides the mundane ” I overstayed my visa, now what do I do”
    If I read that one more time I think I will vomit.
  • #274036

    Anonymous

    if i wanted trolls, i would go to the facebook group!3casas2015-03-12 17:30:50

  • #274038

    Anonymous

    [QUOTE=hpeak13]…I also like the idea of delegation…..maybe have 3 mods so power is not with just one person? Just s thought….[/QUOTE]

    Acommittee of three moderators speaking as one voice; a latter-day Holy Trinity;a righteous vigilante group that would be empowered to strike fear into thehearts of cowering trolls. Might such infallible members get to have specialhats; hats would be nice and to use bold fonts. LOLLOLLOL

  • #274041

    Anonymous

    it might be good to specify that each of the trinity members must be an individual distinct biological entity. (i.e. no socks).

  • #274043

    sahara
    Member

    gringo.serrano (and others): Points noted. The problem is twofold in terms of moderation. Firstly, we don’t have time to monitor every post and comment made here – I’ve mentioned many times that we rely on (ideally sensible) people reporting posts, whether here or Facebook. The site does not generate vast revenue so it is not possible to dedicate someone to moderating the forums and Facebook groups, so we need and equally appreciate the crowdsourced approach, when it works. Secondly, there are so many members here with axes to grind against others, and even normally sensible users that have a knee jerk response to posts or comments made, that I don’t feel we have anyone that can be trusted to apply independent moderation.

    Also, I’ve read for several years now posts that state the forum has failed and no-one uses it any more, yet people keep joining and posting. The intention has always been to make the forum first and foremost a pleasant place to post questions and comments, within the limited resources available (as above).
    In your particular recent example, you have posted abusive comments to Terry_2 as much as he has done the same to you. I have made it clear repeatedly not to engage in retaliatory responses – just report the posts and leave it to be moderated.
  • #274045

    hoganti
    Member

    [QUOTE=SteelRat] Firstly, we don’t have time to monitor every post and comment made here –
    [/QUOTE]

    maybe delegate?
    and in terms of people joing and posting, aside from the “how do I get a visa” question, it’s not like the new blood posting at all.
    In regards to Terry, 38, and the others….don’t you think maybe the way trolls are handled should be addressed. As evidence by the number of folks posting in this thread it seems to be a real bother for contributing members.
    Thanks for taking the time to respond
  • #274046

    sahara
    Member

    hpeak13: I think I’ve addressed most of the points above e.g. delegating moderation.

    Somewhat repeating the above, but if there are a core of users here that have spotted trolls then help us out by logging abuse reports on the comments they post. These do need to be comments that are breaking the group rules though e.g. abusive.

    I don’t expect the forum will be at the level it was 10+ years ago with the likes of Facebook.
  • #274047

    hoganti
    Member

    I would nominate 3casas not sure if she’d be interested. And yes, I agree with the point about axes to grind which is why you could have 3 mods…but, if you’re content running it the way you are so be it.

    It is your forum after all.
    Again, thanks for the time in reading/replying
  • #274048

    Serrano
    Participant

    [QUOTE=hpeak13]

    In regards to Terry, 38, and the others….don’t you think maybe the way trolls are handled should be addressed. As evidence by the number of folks posting in this thread it seems to be a real bother for contributing members.
    Thanks for taking the time to respond

    [/QUOTE]
    Yes, thanks for taking time to respond Steel Rat. I also echo hpeak’s question, don’t you think these certain time-wasters, trolls, whatever term one cares to use, should be addressed?
    I hear you about “retaliatory remarks”, but as I expressed to you in my pm, this has been going on for approximately five years! I have NO MORE patience for this individual and his constant harassment. What is it about that you don’t comprehend?!?
    Were it the case of some genuine new ‘whiner’, then that’s another story, but as the long term members on here fully know, it’s a repeating annoyance, again, and again, and again, year after year, after year. Basta!
    Gringo.Serrano2015-03-12 18:42:33

  • #274049

    Anonymous

    while i appreciate your kind thoughts Hpeak, I haven’t the time. also, from what the current definition seems to be, I have an axe to grind, as I also have been on the receiving end of abusive messages from this individual and have no more patience for it either.

  • #274050

    sahara
    Member

    gringo.serrano: As per the PM and my previous posts, if one or more accounts are attacking you with abusive comments then report the comments and do not engage with them. This is all that’s required.

  • #274051

    Anonymous

    Wellthere it is; crowdsourcing. Which means that those of us who previously may havesimply stood by and watched/ignored trolling should become proactive and pressthe report button. It’s the nearest thing to a democratic process likely to beachieved. Geek

  • #274057

    Isos
    Participant

    Would blocking an IP (or a block of addresses) rather than a username, be more effective?

  • #274061

    Marc Maserati
    Participant

    [QUOTE=The Abbot]

    They aren’t new and they didn’t come out of nowhere! You ever notice they happen to mention members who have not been active for years?
    Tres houses- Pms?!?!?! Really?? WTF! That’s next level craziness!

    [/QUOTE]

    I meant newer in terms of joined date! Clearly they are second, third or tenth interations of one person with too much time on their hands!
    -Marc
  • #274062

    Ron
    Participant

    [QUOTE=agri2001]” I overstayed my visa, now what do I do”

    If I read that one more time I think I will vomit.

    [/QUOTE]

    A site that I follow warns visiting cruising yachts of piracy/boardings/attacks on yachts that happen in Brazil, and elsewhere.

    Some of these warnings are very clear – “If you anchor here you WILL be robbed.” – Yet every month or so there is a new report of a robbery at the same place. Just like the ‘I overstayed my visa, what do I do.’
    These people are not trolls – they are just lazy or stupid.
    I have detected a tendency with the younger generations that when they ask, “Can you help me?” their real expectation is for you to do it for them………………….. Just like people on this site ask questions before doing any research.
  • #274063

    Finrudd
    Participant

    I fully support Gringo.Serrano’s post, and would like to see something done to preserve this forum as somewhere as a useful source of information, but also somewhere that doesn’t lose its banter, but where there is a clear line that is not crossed when banter becomes personal, or targeted at individuals repetitively. I’ve been posting here since 2005, and check in daily, and I think the best course of action is the crowd sourcing approach whereby we all make an effort to use the report function for the repeat offenders.

  • #274066

    Anonymous

    [QUOTE=finrudd]I fully support Gringo.Serrano’s post, and would like to see something done to preserve this forum as somewhere as a useful source of information, but also somewhere that doesn’t lose its banter, but where there is a clear line that is not crossed when banter becomes personal, or targeted at individuals repetitively. I’ve been posting here since 2005, and check in daily, and I think the best course of action is the crowd sourcing approach whereby we all make an effort to use the report function for the repeat offenders. [/QUOTE]
    +1:
    Add me to this list, too, finrudd. In my case, since 2012 (but lurking from way before then).
    Meanwhile, the problem is easy to fix:
    For each subforum, assign one established user –or 2, or 3– as co-moderators.
    I am not volunteering because I have been absent lately due to travel and an uptick in work, but some of our retirees with more time than me can probably lend an idle hand.

  • #274069

    ffm
    Member

    [QUOTE=SteelRat]


    I don’t feel we have anyone that can be trusted to apply independent moderation.

    [/QUOTE]

    I actually agree with this. LOL
  • #274075

    Anonymous

    so do I!

    i find it really interesting that the forum does persist. There is a wealth here stashed away (as the Cap’n says, for those who are astute enough stumble upon the marvels of the search function).
    New members do bumble in from time to time, but it is kind of like when you are in a strange town, looking for a bar on a cold night in Chicago before you fly out in the morning, maybe, and the first bar you walk into screeches to a halt and a bunch of toothless men dressed in rabbit suits with no butts slowly turn to stare at you, and then maybe appear to lurch a millimeter in your direction, and you go screaming out the door in search of a Starbucks instead.
  • #274079

    graham
    Participant

    3casas: perfect analogyGrads2015-03-13 11:05:51

  • #274080

    Serrano
    Participant

    [QUOTE=SteelRat]gringo.serrano: As per the PM and my previous posts, if one or more accounts are attacking you with abusive comments then report the comments and do not engage with them. This is all that’s required.[/QUOTE]

    Steel Rat,

    Again, I thank you forweighing in yesterday evening, with your response and point of view. Later on last night, I gave further consideration to what you said,and would like to offer my ‘dois centavos’.

    I believe your are wise tonot trust anyone to apply independent moderation. But rather thangranting someone authority, how about granting a few priority? By that I mean, when you receive a report from one of them about aspecific post, or even about a specific forum member’s generalbehavior, then address the issue promptly and judiciously. Theirmessage is granted higher priority over those who pm you whining, “G.Shurt my feelings because he said I have stinky socks”.

    Yourblanket response “just report the posts and leave it to bemoderated” doesn’t work. Why? Because you take days tolook into the report and respond with some sort of action. Most ofthe heated/abusive/harassing incidents happen all within a few hourstime frame. Smoke is already rising. Where there’s smoke, fire isusually going to follow. If you see/smell smoke, expecting the corpode bombeiros to arrive 72 hours later just isn’t going to cut it. The damage will have already been done.

    You’vetold us you don’t have the time or resources to devout to fullmoderation. So why not appoint some specificeyes and ears to help you, above and beyond the ‘crowd sourcing’approach? I have a feeling that much of the ‘crowd’ reporting isoften comprised of sock puppets anyway. Make it a temporary role,not a permanent assignment, say three or six months in duration,rotating people throughout the year. No assigned time when theyshould be on-line, just whenever they might be on the forum. I wouldsay, minimum, five forum members, seven even better, to be enlistedeach cycle. No one knows who they are but you. No special titleposted in association with their avatar.

    Thispart too only you know how to implement, and without properimplementation, it’s not going to work, and the forum will remain inthe dysfunctional state that exists today. When one of the’observers’ (for lack of a better term), sends you a pm, it willsomehow need to reach you in real time. For then you know it’s anissue that warrants your attention, preferably in the next few hours,not days later. Then you deal with it as you see fit.

    Youare judge and jury, and IMO, as it should be, and as it shouldremain. I have no hard feelings about how you judged Gringo.Floripabecause of a comment made to Grantham. What was said to Grantham wasabusive, and I paid the price. I also apologized to him, publicly. Andto my complete surprise, he accepted my apology, publicly. We’veboth moved on; water under the bridge. Yet a certain time-wasterfinds it necessary to keep harping about the event, in the form ofharassment (and yet still remains an active member).

    But if someone reports another forum member about a comment made to athird party, I think you should take the time to contact that thirdparty first, before deciding on any punitive action. Inquire if suchcomments are of a frequent occurrence (harassment), and if in fact the third partywas even offended by the comment made.

    Butas for who to pick for this role as an observer, those who are’gurus’ should obviously be considered first (but not automaticallychosen simply because some algorithm has awarded them that title). There are also some Senior Members who would make excellentcandidates. Finrudd has been a member on here a long time, areasonable and well balanced fellow (except for that handbag he’salways twirling about when two forum members get into a pissingcontest), and his posts, when not humorous, fall into the informativeand helpful category. There are others like him, who would also begood candidates (Grads also comes to mind), but you’ll need to spendsome time to determine who they are, and have some alternates,because all may not accept the appointment.

    Sothat’s my suggestion as how to perhaps get things back on even keelhere, and to deal swiftly with the time-wasters, the sock puppets,when they pop up and begin their harassment and distractions. For ifyou do deal with it more swiftly than you have been doing, then theoccurrence of “retaliatory remarks” will also greatly decrease.Retaliation is a reaction to an act of instigation. Action/reaction,it’s a law of physics, and an unfortunate human trait as well. Dealwith the instigator, first and foremost. The overall environment onhere will be a much better place, and genuinelywill become ‘a peaceful forum’.

    Now,as for what you mean by ‘abusive comments’…. This needs to be morefully defined. What is ‘abusive’? Is it like porn, can’t be defined, but you know it when you see it? One recent post of mine in the Yanks with Bank Accounts thread, whichyou deleted and reprimanded me for being ‘abusive’, was my quotingTerry_2’s creepy posts about what browser I happened to be using,what I was doing at a particular moment on the forum (such as typinga reply), and stating not only what type of computer OS I’m usingnow, but he actuallyrecalled I previously had a Mac! I called him out for his ‘voyeurism’, which as far as I’m concerned,borders on obsession, even stalking. Now how is that being’abusive’? Confronting, yes. Abusive, no.

    Whathe had to say, wouldn’t in and of itself be considered ‘abusive’, noname calling, etc, but it has deep and disturbing undertones thatnonetheless should be examined and addressed. Hpeak mentioned thathe’s been FB ‘stalked’ by someone who he thinks is the sameindividual. 3casas mentioned receiving abusive private messages, whoshe believes is the same individual. Forgive me for being blunt sir,but you’re not seeing the full landscape when you simply tell us”just report the posts and leave it to be moderated”. That’sunacceptable, for the reasons I’ve explained above. You can to dobetter than that.

    Ihave no doubt you can do better, if you put forth some effort. Itwouldn’t take much. You put together a great site, and similar towhat Marc/mmaser stated, I will tell you that this forum has beenimmensely helpful to me. First, to get my residency based on theinvestor visa, then second, assisting me with reliable and executableinformation on how to naturalize. Devote a little time to get thingsback on course please. It will be worth your while, as well ascontinue to provide worth to others, I have no doubt. While the forum may not generate much revenue (if any), think of it as a ‘public service’. You’ll reap benefits, I have no doubt about that either.

    Butback briefly to this capability of another forum member being able tomonitor what browser/OS another member is using, where and whatthey’re doing while logged in to the forum, WHY does that featureeven exist?! What purpose does it serve? Does anyone,other than these time-wasters, who are obviously bored out of theminds, actually use this feature?!? Take that stick out their littlehands, and disable this feature!

    Okay,that’s about fifty reais worth, not dois centavos. ‘Observers’, withpriority to reportpotential trouble makers. Whatcha think Steel Rat? It’s not aperfect solution perhaps, but it’s a step in the right direction. You’ve read the other member’s comments here, and if there is aconsensus about anything, the sock puppet situation is a real drag,and the present “report and leave it” approach just isn’t working.

    Thanksfor listening (again). Bom FdS!

    G.S

    EDIT: GPS (grammar/punctuation/spelling)
    Gringo.Serrano2015-03-13 11:59:38

  • #274081

    What started all of this?

  • #274085

    Anonymous

    [QUOTE=Gringo.Serrano]Butback briefly to this capability of another forum member being able tomonitor what browser/OS another member is using, where and whatthey’re doing while logged in to the forum, WHY does that featureeven exist?! What purpose does it serve? Does anyone,other than these time-wasters, who are obviously bored out of theminds, actually use this feature?!? Take that stick out their littlehands, and disable this feature!
    [/QUOTE]

    Yes, please.
    And I don’t know how the troll tracked me but i got a message saying he knew my email address and real name (which, i’m sorry, parabens, but now we are in the age of FB, i am a freelancer and an extremely active networker and volunteer, so my name is everywhere– but this was a few years ago, when that info was not everywhere). Either there is some backtrack feature or your security for the site may need an overhaul. Like I said, big whoop, but I have enough personal security issues with 4 sisters in law and a teenage daughter, I don’t need any more.

  • #274088

    sahara
    Member

    gringo.serrano: As mentioned, we are very limited for resources. I will try to monitor for abuse reports more frequently, ideally on a daily basis, but as mentioned there is a limit.

    Retaliatory replies can still happen within minutes though, and short of 24/7 monitoring which simply cannot happen it still requires forum users to not engage with those posting abusive comments towards them. Just report the post and move on. Sadly unlike Facebook I don’t think there is a block user feature here, but I will trawl through the forum admin settings to see if there is something I’ve missed, or other settings that can be applied/removed based on what has been mentioned (I obviously use an admin account, so I am not sure whether it has more or less features in respect of blocking other users, so worth checking on your own account).
    Crowdsourcing would again be very helpful here, as at least one other commenter has mentioned on this thread. If anyone spots an abusive reply then report it. I only ask that people don’t do this with spam threads, because we get deluged with emails.
    I cannot provide an exhaustive list for what constitutes an abusive reply, but it certainly covers things like name calling and threats. I try to look at the context of the thread when a report is logged, and whether sarcasm has been misinterpreted. We also typically give forum users at least one warning, except when we had a spate of abusive replies.
    The group rules has this to say about abusive comments, which covers more examples: “No harassment. Repeatedly posting personal or offensive comments that are abusive, threatening, offensive, obscene, harassing, harmful, inflammatory, racist or otherwise objectionable may be considered harassment. We also will not tolerate feuds between members that are brought to the forum. We reserve the right to remove such messages and take action against those responsible.”
  • #274089

    Anonymous

    thanks for taking the time, SR.

  • #274094

    doctorlili
    Member

    One great thing all this teaches everyone is to learn not to give an eff what someone else thinks about you and declares about you. Likewise, not to pay attention to someone making baseless conjectures about someone else. Just not pay attention to the personal feuds. It also helps people to take a long overdue forum vacation to do more important things.
    I remember well the craziness this Terry_2 and his other socks were causing some 2 years ago. It went so far as Esprit (now Fila) falling into that same hysteria and hysterically accusing me to be one of them for some remark I made about dengue one day. Everyone gets wound up when we should all learn to stoically not feed the troll and give a phack about what others are saying about you.

  • #274101

    ffm
    Member

    [QUOTE=3casas]so do I!

    i find it really interesting that the forum does persist. There is a wealth here stashed away (as the Cap’n says, for those who are astute enough stumble upon the marvels of the search function).
    New members do bumble in from time to time, but it is kind of like when you are in a strange town, looking for a bar on a cold night in Chicago before you fly out in the morning, maybe, and the first bar you walk into screeches to a halt and a bunch of toothless men dressed in rabbit suits with no butts slowly turn to stare at you, and then maybe appear to lurch a millimeter in your direction, and you go screaming out the door in search of a Starbucks instead.

    [/QUOTE]

    First of all: KKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKkkk
    Now that that is out of the way, I have used this magic search function from time to time with no avail. It pulls up a lot of irrelevant crap for me. And I am a wizard with google, for realz.
  • #274102

    ffm
    Member

    [QUOTE=andrew_nofro]What started all of this?
    [/QUOTE]

    A short, boring e-Book could be published on it. Basically all that sock puppet stuff that went on around the time you relinquished your most active account.
  • #274106

    Anonymous

    [QUOTE=The Abbot][QUOTE=SteelRat]


    I don’t feel we have anyone that can be trusted to apply independent moderation.

    [/QUOTE]

    I actually agree with this. LOL

    [/QUOTE]

    Iwould second this. Poachers turned gamekeepers are a soulless treacherous lotyet are a step up from the otherwise voiceless ranks of volunteer members of committees.God preserve us from such tyranny.

  • #274112

    graham
    Participant

    [QUOTE=Fila][QUOTE=The Abbot][QUOTE=SteelRat]


    I don’t feel we have anyone that can be trusted to apply independent moderation.

    [/QUOTE]

    I actually agree with this. LOL

    [/QUOTE]

    Iwould second this. Poachers turned gamekeepers are a soulless treacherous lotyet are a step up from the otherwise voiceless ranks of volunteer members of committees.God preserve us from such tyranny.

    [/QUOTE]

    Trust: An often dangerous, though often necessary leap in life.
  • #274113

    Anonymous

    [QUOTE=Grads][QUOTE=Fila][QUOTE=The Abbot][QUOTE=SteelRat]


    I don’t feel we have anyone that can be trusted to apply independent moderation.

    [/QUOTE]

    I actually agree with this. LOL

    [/QUOTE]

    Iwould second this. Poachers turned gamekeepers are a soulless treacherous lotyet are a step up from the otherwise voiceless ranks of volunteer members of committees.God preserve us from such tyranny.

    [/QUOTE]

    Trust: An often dangerous, though often necessary leap in life.

    [/QUOTE]

    “Father,why hast thou forsaken me?” And yet we trust in God…
  • #274132

    Serrano
    Participant

    [QUOTE=Fila][QUOTE=Grads]

    Trust: An often dangerous, though often necessary leap in life.

    [/QUOTE]

    “Father,why hast thou forsaken me?” And yet we trust in God…

    [/QUOTE]
    I recall a certain vulture telling me once, “Never doubt me.” I’ve never met him, never seen him, but strangely, I believed him….

  • #274133

    Serrano
    Participant

    [QUOTE=SteelRat]gringo.serrano: As mentioned, we are very limited for resources. I will try to monitor for abuse reports more frequently, ideally on a daily basis, but as mentioned there is a limit.

    [/QUOTE]
    “Try”? “Ideally”? “Alimit”?

    You might as well have said, “Podedeixar”.

    It’s very disappointing to hear youwon’t even attempt to implement another system.

    Então, vamos ver….

  • #274143

    scotty447
    Member
    ..G.S…spend less time here….issue will be solved on its own…..Hpeak has been effectively doing it here.

    This is just an internet forum ….not our workplace ( except for some few members here….LOLLOL)
  • #274151

    miguel
    Participant

    [QUOTE=Gringo.Serrano]Theforum is already on life-support. IMHO, either step up yourmoderation of the site, or just pull the plug. [/QUOTE]
    Blunt, but fair.
    G.S’s thread obviously hit a nerve with an impressive number of this site’s core members. And SR is to be commended for engaging.

  • #274152

    miguel
    Participant

    As someone who has posted here since 2004, I have seen this site go through a few cycles of high’s and low’s. Lately, unprecedented and rampant spam, easily fixed, has devalued the site and the quality of users’ experience – and patience. Sock puppetry here of course is nothing new, and may provide some initial if short-lived entertainment value unless it derails the thread at hand. The most recent iteration of attacks, specifically those aimed at Hspeak, G.S, and 3casas, broke new ground in attempting to expose personally identifiable information. The administrative policy of eliminating long-term contributors instead of the sock puppets who initiate attacks on them has always been self-defeating, as it deprives the site of its most productive and engaged user base. A few notable members have returned, but most haven’t bothered, resulting in decreased volume of “substantive” or “interesting” threads or posts which have effectively maintained or attracted new interest in the past. The risk, if these issues are left unaddressed, is of a continuing downward spiral of contributors’ interest.

  • #274153

    celso
    Member

    I agree. Sock puppets are brought out to bait, attack and get long term contributors ejected.
    I ignore them.
    When evaluating complaints, Steel Rat should consider this sock puppet nature of complaints.

  • #274154

    a6abeGGkz-0
    Member

    [QUOTE=Gringo.Serrano] [QUOTE=SteelRat]gringo.serrano: As mentioned, we are very limited for resources. I will try to monitor for abuse reports more frequently, ideally on a daily basis, but as mentioned there is a limit.

    [/QUOTE] “Try”? “Ideally”? “A
    limit”? <p style=”margin-bottom: 0cm”>You might as well have said, “<span style=”font-style: normal”>Pode
    deixar</span>”.
    <p style=”margin-bottom: 0cm”>It’s very disappointing to hear you
    won’t even attempt to implement another system.
    <p style=”margin-bottom: 0cm”>Então, vamos ver….<p style=”margin-bottom: 0cm”>

    [/QUOTE]
    Hope you guys don’t mind me saying a few things about this, I am kind of new here but from what’ve seen I am so ready to report on 38 for harassing HP . I’ve seen it too many times to say what’s wrong with him? GS, you are really good at flipping back at Terry but that’s enough, right. SR said he will act upon being notified of abusive posts and hope that will fix the problem and that you ALL will continue to post comments. The abusive posts have to go away, not you or HP or 3casas including Terry or 38 as long as they don’t harass or pick on members.

  • #274159

    Anonymous

    Theproof of this pudding will be demonstrated the next time a sock puppet dares abit of puppeteering; fingers on buzzers, please!

  • #274190

    Anonymous

    And while we wait, a little factoid: Doyou know that in the human body there is a nerve that connects the eyeball tothe anus? It’s called the AnalOptic Nerve, and it is responsible for giving people a sh*tty outlook on life.If you don’t believe it, pull a hair from your ass and see if it doesn’t bringa tear to your eyes.

  • #274216

    Serrano
    Participant

    ^^^Sois this the trick they use on the novelas to get the actresses tocry? Shocked
    [QUOTE=FanC]Hope you guys don’t mind me saying a few things about this, I am kind of new here but from what’ve seen I am so ready to report on 38 for harassing HP . I’ve seen it too many times to say what’s wrong with him? [/QUOTE]
    Keep digging… you’re almost to China….
    [QUOTE=ganeshrkara]

    ..G.S…spend less time here….issue will be solved on its own…..Hpeak has been effectively doing it here.

    This is just an internet forum ….not our workplace ( except for some few members here…. )[/QUOTE]Bless your heartGaneshkara. Much obliged for your concern and counsel.

    BTW, Hpeak is aSouthern gentleman, whereas I’m a Suhh-thern SOB.Wink

    Gotta go… time’s awastin’…. (and pull your socks up, would ya?!)

    @ Everyoneelse, thanks for your solidarity and support!


    Thisthread is now closed for further comments,

    whilewe wait to see if moderation is indeed improved.

  • #274320

    scotty447
    Member
    lol….AGAIN your ‘Bless your heart ‘ posts….LOL….no wonder Terry is always after you….

    ‘ Our faults irritate us most when we see them in others’ ….Wink

    ganeshrkara2015-03-20 10:02:51

  • #274322

    agri2001
    Participant

    Troll?

  • #274378

    a6abeGGkz-0
    Member

    [QUOTE=Fila] <span style=”color: rgb11, 12, 12; line-height: 17.05pt; font-size: 12px;”>The
    proof of this pudding will be demonstrated the next time a sock puppet dares a
    bit of puppeteering; fingers on buzzers, please!</span><p =”Msonormal” style=”margin-bottom: 16.2pt; line-height: 17.05pt; -: initial; -attachment: initial; -size: initial; -origin: initial; -clip: initial; -: initial; -repeat: initial;”><span style=”color: rgb11, 12, 12; -: initial; -attachment: initial; -size: initial; -origin: initial; -clip: initial; -: initial; -repeat: initial;”><o:p></o:p></span>[/QUOTE] Hahah not that anal, it takes the fun out of everything and anything !

  • #274420

    oweng
    Member

    The lack of moderation on this site is epic. See this post from 2010 as one example.
    __________________________________________________________
    Their endless name calling, harassing, offensive & abusive language, bullying and shameless Joao Pessoa property promoting & profiteering (accomplished under many different aliases) on this site seems to have done them in. Seems that they were given ample opportunities by the site�s administrators to consult the House Rules and to clean up their act, from looking over Steelrat�s 30 or so warnings to them over this past year:
    Anyone know about Joao Pessoa?
    Posted: 15 September 2009 at 16:22
    dangerfield: Account suspended for being abusive.
    Teaching English .. advice needed… thank you!
    Posted: 15 September 2009 at 16:21
    dangerfield: Post deleted for being abusive.
    Just for fun… London Lad/Kiteflyer alia
    Posted: 14 September 2009 at 06:28
    Tamashin & Herr Stocky: Posts deleted and accounts suspended, both after receiving multiple warnings.
    How do i apply to live and work in Brazil?
    Posted: 10 September 2009 at 12:12
    Buzz: Post deleted for linking to site with advertising. Please read the house rules.
    Welcome to Brazil!
    Posted: 09 September 2009 at 10:33
    Hair Lipp: Post deleted for being abusive and account suspended after repeated warnings.
    Wire Transfers
    Posted: 09 September 2009 at 10:31
    Hair Lipp: Post deleted. Do not quote strong language from other posts, simply submit an abuse report.
    Outbreak of traffic signs in Salvador?
    Posted: 06 September 2009 at 13:40
    Hair Lipp: Abusive post deleted. This is your final warning.
    Fantasy football & English/Brazilian footy chat
    Posted: 06 September 2009 at 13:40
    Hair Lipp: Abusive post deleted. Please read the House Rules.
    Just for fun… London Lad/Kiteflyer alia
    Posted: 06 September 2009 at 13:38
    Hair Lipp: Abusive posts deleted. Please read the House Rules.
    Updated house rules
    Posted: 06 August 2009 at 05:47
    Kiteflyer: Account suspended, following final warning and continued abusive posts.
    Anyone know about Joao Pessoa?
    Posted: 06 August 2009 at 05:41
    Tamashin: Please put a reference for the article or it will be deleted.
    Updated house rules
    Posted: 05 August 2009 at 15:54
    London Lad: Post deleted and account suspended, after repeated warnings not to post links to your website.
    Updated house rules
    Posted: 04 August 2009 at 14:37
    Tamashin: There needs to be a generally more tolerant attitude towards posts, and I would hope that would be part and parcel of that, rather than mandated as a rule.
    Updated house rules
    Posted: 03 August 2009 at 07:50
    KiteFlyer: Offensive posts deleted. This is your final warning.
    Hello
    Posted: 02 August 2009 at 05:22
    KiteFlyer: Offensive posts removed. Do not reply with abusive posts to other members, as per the House Rules.
    Anyone know about Joao Pessoa?
    Posted: 20 July 2009 at 07:38
    Tamashin: Do not misquote other forum users
    You need to earn bigtime!
    Posted: 17 July 2009 at 14:24
    London Lad and Tamashin: Abusive posts deleted, and final warnings.
    thinking of going back home…
    Posted: 17 July 2009 at 07:49
    London Lad: Inappropriate photo deleted.
    Cheap livin’
    Posted: 14 July 2009 at 04:48
    London Lad: please do not advertise websites on this forum. Tamashin has already been warned about this, and this is also your final warning.
    Anyone know about Joao Pessoa?
    Posted: 05 June 2009 at 12:18
    Tamashin: Please note if posting material from other sites you need to reference the source, otherwise I will have to delete these posts
    No Advertising in Accomodation
    Posted: 01 June 2009 at 04:29
    Jacare, Tamashin and others: Posts deleted.
    Tamashin: Despite your initial request to post about the site once, which we agreed to, I did warn you not to make any successive posts and also not to flood the forum with posts about Joao…
    Anyone know about Joao Pessoa?
    Posted: 30 April 2009 at 12:11
    BigDog & Tamashin: Abusive posts deleted. Please read and follow the House Rules.
    JOAO PESSOA GET TOGETHER =MARCH 2009
    Posted: 16 March 2009 at 10:41
    Kiteflyer: post also deleted for harassment of another forum member.
    JOAO PESSOA GET TOGETHER =MARCH 2009
    Posted: 16 March 2009 at 10:24
    I have also stressed to Tamashin that all these repeated posts are also not in the spirit of the forum, along with crossposting on unrelated threads.
    Is Joao Pessoas now such a scary place?
    Posted: 16 March 2009 at 06:57
    I have also asked Tamashin to throttle back on the posts about Joao Pessoa, particularly in irrelevant threads. Equally though if there’s a post that doesn’t interest you then please leave it alone and look at that which does.

  • #274433

    sahara
    Member

    [QUOTE=Gandhi]The lack of moderation on this site is epic. See this post from 2010 as one example.[/QUOTE]

    I’m confused. You’ve just listed lots of examples of moderation.
  • #274434

    graham
    Participant

    [QUOTE=SteelRat][QUOTE=Gandhi]The lack of moderation on this site is epic. See this post from 2010 as one example.[/QUOTE]

    I’m confused. You’ve just listed lots of examples of moderation.

    [/QUOTE]

    Why does someone spend this much effort on research – incomplete research – then post it? Follow your own advice.
  • #274435

    Anonymous

    That would appear to be the question.

  • #274438

    Anonymous

    Gandhi’s been at the brandy. Six year-old meaningless examples. Wacko

  • #274441

    agri2001
    Participant

    I would say it`s quite an improvement for length if you compare it to his inane one-liners ..

  • #274446

    miguel
    Participant

    While a number of us are on the fence, waiting to see how the first major sock-puppet attack against a substantive contributor plays out here going forward, the return of a certain site member has, in the interim, given us a reason to stay.
    That would be Fila/Esprit of course. To catch up on his latest philosophical ruminations, brilliantly acerbic wit, or ostensibly outrageous narratives exposing certain truths.

  • #274469

    oweng
    Member

    The point is, that some misusers – in this case from JP = have gotten a couple dozen “final warnings” without ever being banned. I don’t consider that “moderation”

  • #274471

    hoganti
    Member

    i dont think anyone has ever accused admin of moderating….that’s kinda the point behind the OP

  • #274479

    Serrano
    Participant

    [QUOTE=miguel]While a number of us are on the fence, waiting to see how the first major sock-puppet attack against a substantive contributor plays out here going forward, the return of a certain site member has, in the interim, given us a reason to stay.
    That would be Fila/Esprit of course. To catch up on his latest philosophical ruminations, brilliantly acerbic wit, or ostensibly outrageous narratives exposing certain truths.
    [/QUOTE]

    I wholeheartedlyagree Miguel! Yet it should be pointed out that the resurrectedEsprit, now posting as Fila (why a new forum name, is anyone’s guess,and it really doesn’t matter), ONLY posts as Fila now. It’s not Espriton Mon-Wed-Fri, and Fila the other days of the week, like certaintime-wasters do. Nor do you find Esprit posting right on top/belowof Fila, congratulating him(self) for his fantastic insight and/orassistance, like some time-wasters often do, to create the illusion ofsomeone paying attention to them. I think the seasoned members onhere are astute enough to smell a stinky sock, when it enters athread.

    BTW, Steel Rat,nice to see you post a recent comment, which indicates to me you’retaking a more active part in this forum once again. Otimo!

    Yet I must insistgente, once again, this thread is now closed, until it’s crystalclear how the next harassment by a sock puppet time-waster is dealtwith by the moderator.

    Wink

  • #274508

    oweng
    Member

    Ah, you just posted am inane one-liner.

  • #274515

    lynchem
    Member

    I suppose I’m a bit fashionably late to this party… Wink

    However so, after reading through most of what seemed important I will participate in agreement with the overall idea that this site has been subject to muslim, I mean Troll, Terrorists!
    The facebook forum is a disaster far superior in irritation than this forum. I find a somewhat tranquility vibe here knowing most of who posts. The facebook forum is 100mph and is a suction of time and attention I cannot handle.
    This forum definitely needs a touch up, and I do not think it’s merely in moderation. There are many practical alternatives Steel Rat should consider: banning IP addresses, software installation (free in some cases) that would consume less than the time it takes to read this post, less find it.
    I have found this forum to be incredibly valuable over the years. The exact reason I have returned on this very day; to seek information on a query. I too have faired my portion of both ridicule and being obnoxious, but feel this place deserves better than Troll Terrorism.
    The only eyebrow I raise with the responses thus far of Steel Rate are the affordability of a means or solution. No one expects a 24/7 monitor, not unless we can somehow convince the troll to keep an eye out for him-selves.. LOL
    This site generates MUCH traffic that only needs to be organized for monetization. Surely after all these years online you generate online income – why not develop this site into an entity. It already has incredible ranking power and internet presence for all English speaking foreigners interested in Brazil.
    Would you sell it to me?
  • #274530

    Serrano
    Participant

    [QUOTE=Leblon]This site generates MUCH traffic that only needs to be organized for monetization. Surely after all these years online you generate online income – why not develop this site into an entity. It already has incredible ranking power and internet presence for all English speaking foreigners interested in Brazil.

    Would you sell it to me?

    [/QUOTE]
    If you need some vc, pm me. And if not, you still have my full support Leblon! Thumbs Up

  • #274640

    sahara
    Member

    I’ve added this as an announcement on all forums, but just to be clear we’re not going to accept abusive posts/comments of any kind for the foreseeable future. It doesn’t matter whether these are troll posts/comments, replies in kind, or something else.

  • #28312

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