Author Topic: On locking threads  (Read 19677 times)

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Offline Zip

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Re: On locking threads
« Reply #25 on: March 31, 2008, 12:13:06 »
Well, speaking for myself.....

I'm only doing this job in my spare time. When a thread catches my attention as going nowhere , i lock it. I dont have the time to read everything and be in every single thread. Also, my idea of what deserves a lock might be a little different that the other mods. We talk about as much as we can but sometimes its just not possible.

Reccesoldier, This isnt my full-time job and i'm not going to make everbody happy. If you think you can do better, i will give you my mod spot.

That's not what I'm saying.  I don't want your spot, I am and have been a mod on other boards, I know what it entails. 

I guess I really don't want all threads to be locked at some point, I want no threads to be locked for no reason.   The antagonists in a thread will either give it up after a point or the subject will morph, like MCG's recent resurrection of the Accommodation thread. 

This is the only forum I am a member of that arbitrarily locks certain threads because mods see no point in continuing the discussion. Others with bandwidth concerns may conduct a prune, but as far as I know that isn't a problem here, and those sites that do do it resurrect ongoing subjects and archive the rest so that they can be restarted if necessary.

And yes, it is the fact that it is certain threads and certain ones only that experience this attention that really pisses me off.
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Offline ArmyVern

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Re: On locking threads
« Reply #26 on: March 31, 2008, 12:16:27 »
Ok.  since I have raised this before, what is it about certain threads that causes them to be locked but others go round and round the mulberry bush ad nauseum to the tune of 941 replies and are never locked?

Seems to me that there is an inequitable application of standards here.  Either all topics should be summed up at the point where the participants are chasing themselves in ever diminishing circles or none are.

I am also a volunteer.

Your chosen example is a highly debatable topic. It IS news ... you may not agree with Global Warming -- that does not render climate change irrelevant however. The debate will rage on from both sides.

Simply put, there is nothing to sum on on either side regarding that topic as of yet. Scientists on BOTH sides of the issue are still arguing it, so any new studies etc or discussion is worthy of posting. It may not be your particular topic of choice; if so, you have the choice to avoid the thread. Just as others do avoid threads which do not interest them.

For the most part, topics that find themselves locked pertain to policy etc. And, those will find themselves unlocked & then relocked if policy changes.

Some threads are locked as a result of their delving down to the personal insult level. Those topics are usually cleaned up & then unlocked again for relevant conversation.

Others are locked because the question orignally asked was of a specific nature, and when the answer is given ... it serves no other purpose.

Others that become locked are usually locked because there IS other threads running on the same issue.

Would you rather us volunteers lock up the global warming thread so that a new one could be started this afternoon to post the results of yet another cities "results" for Earth Hour? You certainly won't be saving us mods any work if that's your thought. Because then we'd have to delve into 10 new and different global warming threads to wade through them. It also makes thing more difficult for new users when they get 20 or 30 results for their search -- only to find it locked. Guess what they are going to do? That's right. They'll start a new one.

Then the mods look bad for invoking the "use the search function" or "read"; sometimes it really seems as if we can win for losing.

I do the best I can here on my free time, thank you very much. And, there's not a mod in here who doesn't attempt the same.

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Offline MCG

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Re: On locking threads
« Reply #27 on: March 31, 2008, 12:18:39 »
Personally, I do not close threads because I feel the discussion is complete.  If it is going nowhere that's fine.  Members can choose to participate or not.

If a thread is in a violent downward spiral, it gets locked.  If a question has been asked & answered somewhere else, then a link is posted and the thread is locked to consolidate discussion (or there is a thread merge).

I believe this it the typical approach here.  Am I wrong?

Offline the 48th regulator

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Re: On locking threads
« Reply #28 on: March 31, 2008, 12:19:00 »
That's not what I'm saying.  I don't want your spot, I am and have been a mod on other boards, I know what it entails. 

I guess I really don't want all threads to be locked at some point, I want no threads to be locked for no reason.   The antagonists in a thread will either give it up after a point or the subject will morph, like MCG's recent resurrection of the Accommodation thread. 

This is the only forum I am a member of that arbitrarily locks certain threads because mods see no point in continuing the discussion. Others with bandwidth concerns may conduct a prune, but as far as I know that isn't a problem here, and those sites that do do it resurrect ongoing subjects and archive the rest so that they can be restarted if necessary.

And yes, it is the fact that it is certain threads and certain ones only that experience this attention that really pisses me off.

So when the Moderator that has locked the thread states that anyone who has a post of relevence to add, may just PM that mod, you are in the belief that this is just fluff and no one should do anything?

As for pruning a thread, then we just feed the ones saying we are sanitizing and oppressing peoples views by deleting posts.

A double edge sword, wouldn't you agree?

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Offline George Wallace

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Re: On locking threads
« Reply #29 on: March 31, 2008, 12:19:26 »
Ok.  since I have raised this before, what is it about certain threads that causes them to be locked but others go round and round the mulberry bush ad nauseum to the tune of 941 replies and are never locked?

Seems to me that there is an inequitable application of standards here.  Either all topics should be summed up at the point where the participants are chasing themselves in ever diminishing circles or none are.

Ah!  The long drawn out "Global Warming" thread.  One reason it is so long is that many started up a number of similar Topics, all dealing with the same premises.  Once merged we have one mega thread.  The question now is, do you want one "Mega thread" or dozens of redundant threads?

I suppose we can do the same thing with all the Religious threads and put them all in Radio Chatter as "Mega Threads" so that they can spiral down whatever drains they want, and stay out of the main Forums.  It is getting rather tiresome having some newbie start up a thread on Religion, that we have already put to bed months/years earlier.
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Offline ArmyVern

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Re: On locking threads
« Reply #30 on: March 31, 2008, 12:19:49 »
And yes, it is the fact that it is certain threads and certain ones only that experience this attention that really pisses me off.

Let's have them then.

Which specific threads and why/why not should there be a lock in your view?

Hopefully, it's not just because you personnally feel the topic is irrelevant (like Global Warming) ... because there's a lot of others here who find it IS relevant.
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Offline Zip

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Re: On locking threads
« Reply #31 on: March 31, 2008, 12:28:03 »
Personally, I do not close threads because I feel the discussion is complete.  If it is going nowhere that's fine.  Members can choose to participate or not.

If a thread is in a violent downward spiral, it gets locked.  If a question has been asked & answered somewhere else, then a link is posted and the thread is locked to consolidate discussion (or there is a thread merge).

I believe this it the typical approach here.  Am I wrong?

And this is all I'm asking for. 

I'm done with this.  This is almost word for word exactly the same reaction, I got the last time I brought up a thread that was arbitrarily locked. 

It's your play pen.  Have at it and run it as you see fit. 

I will not censor my displeasure about this kind of action when I see it in the open forum though, and I will not subject myself to a Mod dog pile in here either.
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Offline Michael O'Leary

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Re: On locking threads
« Reply #32 on: March 31, 2008, 12:31:59 »
That's not what I'm saying.  I don't want your spot, I am and have been a mod on other boards, I know what it entails. 

I'm interested in better understanding your frame of reference.  Can you tell us how large the forums you monitored were, how broad their scope of subject matter was and what nature of topics were the hot-button subjects you had to deal with the most intractable user interactions?

Further, can you explain in detail exactly what methods you used to ensure that every Moderator used the same balanced approach that ensured that no threads were ever locked that you might disagree with the decision?
« Last Edit: March 31, 2008, 12:47:53 by Michael O`Leary »

Offline muskrat89

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Re: On locking threads
« Reply #33 on: March 31, 2008, 12:48:13 »
I locked the religion thread last night, because I felt, personally - that is was getting heated, no progress was being made, and that it was destined to end up the same way all the other religion threads have ended up. As I said, it would be discussed in the CP (which it was). Also, I don't lock a lot of threads here, but when I do, I am always willing to consider a full re-open, or at the least - posting some additional information on behalf of a member. As stated, most of us don't read every single thread, most of us cannot moderate the exact same way, 100% of the time. Every thread is different, and we are all human.

Quote
yet in other topics the flame wars go on forever, get quite vitriolic and are never locked

If that is the case, then a "Report to Moderator" should be initiated. Again, for the umpteenth time - there are 2 resolutions to Mod Ineffectiveness/Inappropriateness here: "Report to Mod", or a PM to Mike. Piping up in open "complaint" threads, is not one of the legitimate options, in my opinion. Yes, many of us do take it personally, when compalints are made in this way. Almost everything is discussed behind closed doors, and we are always trying to improve the way things are done. It irks me that people can pipe up from the peanut gallery, but don't have the huevos (or interest) to ask Mike via PM about the perceived shortcomings in moderation.
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Offline Michael O'Leary

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Re: On locking threads
« Reply #34 on: March 31, 2008, 12:54:58 »
If that is the case, then a "Report to Moderator" should be initiated. Again, for the umpteenth time - there are 2 resolutions to Mod Ineffectiveness/Inappropriateness here: "Report to Mod", or a PM to Mike. Piping up in open "complaint" threads, is not one of the legitimate options, in my opinion. Yes, many of us do take it personally, when compalints are made in this way. Almost everything is discussed behind closed doors, and we are always trying to improve the way things are done. It irks me that people can pipe up from the peanut gallery, but don't have the huevos (or interest) to ask Mike via PM about the perceived shortcomings in moderation.

[Godwin's Law]

Personally, I feel that it all falls under some sort of presumption that everyone gets to have an opinion, except the Moderators.  When a Moderator makes any staff action or statement that crosses the expectations, beliefs, prejudices or wishes of any of the 18,443 Members, then we can immediately be denounced as a virtual Gestapo with impunity.

[/Godwin's Law]

Offline ArmyVern

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Re: On locking threads
« Reply #35 on: March 31, 2008, 12:56:40 »
And this is all I'm asking for. 

I'm done with this.  This is almost word for word exactly the same reaction, I got the last time I brought up a thread that was arbitrarily locked. 

It's your play pen.  Have at it and run it as you see fit. 

I will not censor my displeasure about this kind of action when I see it in the open forum though, and I will not subject myself to a Mod dog pile in here either.

And I'm done with the "Mod Dogpile" crap.

YOU aksed a specific question TO the mods regarding an ADMIN action that WE take on this forum.

Each one of us who has responded has tried to give you the reasons that we personally utilize in determining whether to lock or not.

YOU asked. WE answered.

That's NOT dogpiling, we are trying to answer YOUR question. Nice playpen huh? I was correct, sometimes we just can't win for losing.

I'll take my rattle and go play with others who are willing to share. Because it seems that you want answers about MOD actions, you just don't want them from mods. That really doesn't seem like you're playing fair to me.
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Offline Breacher41

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Re: On locking threads
« Reply #36 on: March 31, 2008, 15:26:34 »
IMO... I've been here a few years, and I've been members of other forums as well. I willcompare military/LE/PMC/Operator forums to this one.

I often think that we at milnet.ca are way too lenient on some of the users. The Mods are too nice and are often slow at times to ban or kick useless posters from this forum. I will give you an example from another forum which shall remain nameless, but if you belong there you'll know what I'm saying. This forums have majority of the Mods being mil/LE. They all know there stuff and doesn't suffer fools lightly, and I mean at all. The Mods rarely have to get involved in any of the discussions, and when they do it's because they are posting as a member. The atmosphere there is one of family, jovial and warm. I think the reason for that is because the members there police themselves. They are quick to help out people who seek info, and just as quick to destroy a useless thread. When the Mods ban someone they ban them swift, fast and often with one simple explanation. Cheats, fakes, liars and thieves do not survive there. They're rooted out and banned. I like that. It takes no time to establish yourself because we can all relate and the friendship extended is overwhelming. Now, how does that compare to milnet? The Mods are encumbered with the constant scrutiny from the masses, and never allowed to go about their business unhindered and unwatched. The thing that many members forget is that the Mods are not here to serve our individual needs, but rather the needs of our commnity. At the other forum I mentioned we're all mil/LE/ex-mil/LE. A few cicies but not many and the reason for that is because they're not really welcomed there. Their thought and ideals often clash with those of the members, and that's what gets them removed. Now, that's the community over there, but ours is different. We foster and teach and we allow questions to be posed,discussions to be had freely and openly even though some of us may not agree with the topics discussed or the membership of some of the poster, but that's what sets us appart from the other forums. We allow discussion and include the membership of the public, but we also moderate and control the content so that it doesn't get out of hand.

We at milnet.ca whine too much at times. Forgetting the big picture and how this community has brought many of us closer to our brothers and sisters. So what if the Mods seem overly harsh to you? They don't answer to you, they answer to the community and the site owner. If he's got no problems with the methods to which they're conducting their roles, why do you think you've got the need to criticize them for almost every single action that they take?

It's the internet folks. If you don't like it here, feel free to leave or find another forum. 
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Offline Zip

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Re: On locking threads
« Reply #37 on: March 31, 2008, 15:50:27 »
I was just going to leave this mess alone, but I've realized that won't solve this to anyones satisfaction and besides, I never did understand the concept of "Discretion being the better part of valour" :)

I am going to do this as dispassionately as possible and I would hope that those who wish to comment will do the same.

Here goes.

So when the Moderator that has locked the thread states that anyone who has a post of relevence to add, may just PM that mod, you are in the belief that this is just fluff and no one should do anything?

As for pruning a thread, then we just feed the ones saying we are sanitizing and oppressing peoples views by deleting posts.

A double edge sword, wouldn't you agree?

dileas

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If you read what I wrote in regards to the pruning of threads you will see that I was talking about other site on which I am a moderator.  this site does not support itself with advertisements and therefore periodically a prune is done to archive inactive threads in order to save bandwidth.

Let's have them then.

Which specific threads and why/why not should there be a lock in your view?

Hopefully, it's not just because you personnally feel the topic is irrelevant (like Global Warming) ... because there's a lot of others here who find it IS relevant.

This topic http://forums.army.ca/forums/index.php/topic,72459.0.html was closed because
Quote
I locked the religion thread last night, because I felt, personally - that is was getting heated, no progress was being made, and that it was destined to end up the same way all the other religion threads have ended up.
22 minutes after this inflammatory post by NL_engineer.
Quote
Well as T6 said, after the US gained Independence they were faced with huge debt.  So with a 70 Mill debt in the 1700's how do you think their economy was?

I am still not seeing your point

Why?  because a mod thought
Quote
This thread is going 90 miles per hour down a dead-end street.
but worse than that, it was a preemptive strike against a specific subject based on nothing more than a feeling.  Why is it that some topics like this one for example http://forums.army.ca/forums/index.php/topic,71458.0.html can be managed with a warning and others get the preemptive boot?

With the complaints of Mods  concerned about how much effort it takes to properly moderate such a large site (which I agree with by the way) why on earth would you want to spend your time locking innocuous threads?

I guess I see the role of Mod as a policeman who watches and is bound to observe but can not legally act until the law is actually broken.

I'm interested in better understanding your frame of reference.  Can you tell us how large the forums you monitored were, how broad their scope of subject matter was and what nature of topics were the hot-button subjects you had to deal with the most intractable user interactions?

Further, can you explain in detail exactly what methods you used to ensure that every Moderator used the same balanced approach that ensured that no threads were ever locked that you might disagree with the decision?

What are we going to play a game of my site is bigger than your site?  Tanknet, heard of it? 

Yes, basically to avoid arbitrary locking of threads each and every topic was allowed to die a natural death as the people in the forum lost interest.  Conversely if a topic morphed into another subject the new subject was split from the old one and the old one was permitted to die.  Also it was very rare that a topic got locked at all, the mods instead dealt with the individual causing the problem.  None of what I call the old army "Collective discipline" mentality.

So there you have it. 

I have a philosophical disagreement with locking a thread on a discussion board while discussion is ongoing.  When you stop to think about it that action makes no sense and is counterproductive to the purpose of a discussion forum in the first place.

There is a huge debate, possibly the most important debate going on in this country right now on freedom of speech.  Now I know and acknowledge that this site is privately owned and as such it is Mike's to do with and manage as he pleases but if we can't at least have open and complete dialog here, in a place where we all agree with that principal, what does that say about our commitment to free speech?

By the way muskrat89, I'm not trying to single anyone out here.  I too have a full time job (quiet you :D ) and did not have the time or inclination to sort through all the posts it would have taken to make a more complete argument.

Oh, i will avail myself of the contact the Mod thingy more from now on.  That's a promise, and a threat. :D
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Offline the 48th regulator

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Re: On locking threads
« Reply #38 on: March 31, 2008, 15:55:04 »
Now,

Wouldn't you agree your views would have been better served here, as opposed to taking a swipe like;

Well the locking of specific threads around here is a topic for other discussion.  Like why a topic such as the one you referred to, in which no-one was foaming at the mouth was summarily locked and yet in other topics the flame wars go on forever, get quite vitriolic and are never locked.

On another thread?  Find a problem, present the solution at the same time.

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Offline recceguy

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Re: On locking threads
« Reply #39 on: March 31, 2008, 15:59:39 »
And this is all I'm asking for. 

And you got your answer(s)

I'm done with this.  This is almost word for word exactly the same reaction, I got the last time I brought up a thread that was arbitrarily locked. 

Perhaps because it was likely almost word for word from the last time you asked the question?

It's your play pen.  Have at it and run it as you see fit. 

Now, here, you're the one that's acting like the petulant child, not us. By the way, we'll run it as the Owner sees fit, not you.


I will not censor my displeasure about this kind of action when I see it in the open forum though, and I will not subject myself to a Mod dog pile in here either.

However, we're expected, by you, to censure our displeasure of having to deal with the same whiny question everytime you're disatisfied with the way we do our jobs? We have to be accountable and you don't? Pfffft, have a nice day, we don't need your ball and bat to play.
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Offline Zip

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Re: On locking threads
« Reply #40 on: March 31, 2008, 16:03:47 »


Yes Dave, I can be an *** sometimes. There feel better.  :-*  ;)
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Offline recceguy

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Re: On locking threads
« Reply #41 on: March 31, 2008, 16:06:34 »
Yes Dave, I can be an *** sometimes. There feel better.  :-*  ;)

I knew you'd feel the kindred spirit in all that ;)
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Offline muskrat89

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Re: On locking threads
« Reply #42 on: March 31, 2008, 16:40:42 »
Luckily I don't have to endure the (obvious) burden of being perfect.

I don't know why this seems to be such a difficult concept.

Quote
Why?  because a mod thought
Quote
This thread is going 90 miles per hour down a dead-end street. EndQuote
but worse than that, it was a preemptive strike against a specific subject based on nothing more than a feeling.

So.... you type a PM to Mike, or hit "Report to Mod" and say "I don't understand why that thread was locked. It doesn't seem justified, examining the tone and content currently being presented in the thread"

Then.... Mike looks at it, or the other Mods (or even me), depending on which option you chose and say either "The lock was justified and it stands" or "You're right, we'll re-open it".

Since you seem to have no problem making this black and white while pointing in our direction, I don't understand why you are struggling with the solution, which is also black and white.
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Offline ArmyVern

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Re: On locking threads
« Reply #43 on: March 31, 2008, 17:36:23 »
All good Muskrat ...

As long as one realizes that for every 20 reports we get asking why a thread was locked ...

We probably recd 20 beforehand asking "Why the hell is this thread spiralling at 90 miles an hour and not locked yet?"

Don't presume that by using the "report" button, that things will occur the way you wish them too either. We get it from both sides -- and in end it always comes down to a judgement call.

We use our judgement as best as we can ... and make the best attempts that we can.

We'll never satisfy everyone, and in the end -- someone will be unhappy with what Admin action has been taken. I'm good with that. I'm far from perfect myself, so I'll just continue doing the best I can at whatever given time.
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Offline Michael O'Leary

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Re: On locking threads
« Reply #44 on: March 31, 2008, 18:09:01 »
What are we going to play a game of my site is bigger than your site?  Tanknet, heard of it? 

Thank you for your open-minded willingness to continue a line of discussion you brought forward in an attempt to further your own case.  Since you found it more appropriate to dismiss and deflect my inquiry, I will just assume you have nothing useful to offer on that tangent.

Offline Zip

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Re: On locking threads
« Reply #45 on: March 31, 2008, 18:47:51 »
Thank you for your open-minded willingness to continue a line of discussion you brought forward in an attempt to further your own case.  Since you found it more appropriate to dismiss and deflect my inquiry, I will just assume you have nothing useful to offer on that tangent.


Why don't you read what I wrote!!!!

Quote
Quote from: Michael O`Leary on Today at 12:31:59
I'm interested in better understanding your frame of reference.  Can you tell us how large the forums you monitored were, how broad their scope of subject matter was and what nature of topics were the hot-button subjects you had to deal with the most intractable user interactions?

Further, can you explain in detail exactly what methods you used to ensure that every Moderator used the same balanced approach that ensured that no threads were ever locked that you might disagree with the decision?

To which I replied
Quote
What are we going to play a game of my site is bigger than your site?  Tanknet, heard of it?

Yes, basically to avoid arbitrary locking of threads each and every topic was allowed to die a natural death as the people in the forum lost interest.  Conversely if a topic morphed into another subject the new subject was split from the old one and the old one was permitted to die.  Also it was very rare that a topic got locked at all, the mods instead dealt with the individual causing the problem.  None of what I call the old army "Collective discipline" mentality.

This is truly telling.  3 comments on previous comments I made and apologized for, and one that willfully ignores the answer that was asked for in a futile attempt to intimidate/castigate me, and not a single solitary admission or even an attempt to discuss that the self professed "overworked" staff, in closing topics that are "going nowhere" and do not have ongoing flame wars are essentially making work for themselves and tilting at windmills.

Wow.

You asked for an answer, I gave it to you and I admitted that I'd been an *** but you just won't let it go. And you won't even discuss any of the suggestions you asked for

Play on boys and girls I'm done!!!
« Last Edit: March 31, 2008, 18:58:55 by Reccesoldier »
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Offline muskrat89

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Re: On locking threads
« Reply #46 on: March 31, 2008, 18:58:56 »
Quote
that by wasting their time closing topics that are "going nowhere" and do not have ongoing flame wars they are essentially making work for themselves and tilting at windmills.

Says you. Obviously, Mike (the guy that owns this site) doesn't agree. By the way, I indicated that we are not above re-considering how we do things, or even locking/unlocking threads. My point is that there is a mechanism to bring it to our attention. That's all. That, to me - is an "admission".
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Offline Zip

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Re: On locking threads
« Reply #47 on: March 31, 2008, 19:02:37 »
Says you. Obviously, Mike (the guy that owns this site) doesn't agree. By the way, I indicated that we are not above re-considering how we do things, or even locking/unlocking threads. My point is that there is a mechanism to bring it to our attention. That's all. That, to me - is an "admission".

Point taken. I missed you admission, just as it seems you missed the fact that I already stated prior to your referenced post that I would bring it up with the mod the next time a thread is locked for what I see as no good reason.

Even? ;)
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Offline muskrat89

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Re: On locking threads
« Reply #48 on: March 31, 2008, 19:03:36 »
Even.  :)

Pinky-shake?
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Offline Yrys

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Re: On locking threads
« Reply #49 on: March 31, 2008, 19:04:28 »
Pinky-shake?

I'll need a civilian (or francophone) translation toward that, gentleman  :) .
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