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11th August 2011




Logged-in at 10pm local.
9 reports to deal with. 2 users banned, 6 spam postings deleted.

Complaint about the 'religious people are nerds' posting in Chat. Looked at the posting (contains a video asserting that the religious are an extreme example of Nerds). I can see that some religious folk might find it offensive, but someone will find almost any posting offensive and I need more than this to remove a posting. I tried considering it from another angle - would I be insulted if the posting was about English people or atheists? Decided that I wouldn't - I think I'd find it humerous and thought-provoking. I might well find it provoked me to reply, but that's what debate it all about, and a cry of 'offensive' has to be more than 'I don't like it'.

I am not going to remove postings just because one person (or even a few people) find them offensive. I have to apply a more consistent and quantifiable test, and the only one available to me is my own opinion - do I think it is offensive?
Now, of course, people will point out that I am biased - and of course, like everyone else, I am. People could say that I have no right or mandate to set myself up as a judge of what is offensive. The thing is that, right here and now, I do have such a mandate - I'm a moderator. It isn't an exclusive mandate - other moderators have exactly the same mandate, and if another mod disagrees and removes the posting then I will not dissent from that.
I then considered the other request in the complaint - to move the posting to P&R or Jokes. Moving it to P&R is clearly a malicious, or at best ill-considered, suggestion since the complainant is saying that it should be removed because it is offensive, and it would be no less so in p&r. The same applies to 'jokes'.
Nor is the posting particularly either a joke, or a philosophical issue.
I think it is in the correct forum, therefore, complaint over-ruled.



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