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Feedback thread for PI, RI & Bereavement

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  • How come when you look at someones posting history, their previous posts/threads in PI/RI don't appear?

    Some posters will turn out to have previous threads that add much needed context to their current issue. However most people giving advice won't be aware of this, except for the odd times when a savvy poster will figure it out. It's extremely frustrating when you've genuinely spent time giving what you think is meaningful advice, only to change your mind completely when you see the bigger picture from the other threads. Utimately not very helpful for the person seeking advice either.




  • My issue is with posters dragging up threads that have been dormant for three or four weeks (an age in PI/RI terms), which the OP mightn't even have posted in since their first post. There's a couple of posters who do this regularly, it's like they remember the forum every month or so, come in and have a browse and post on whatever tickles their fancy (and with one particular poster it's nearly always tinged with horrid Red Pill nonsense) with no regard whatsoever that the thread has been done for weeks. I report these posts all the time but they're very rarely actioned but, imo, it's the PI equivalent of digging up zombie threads.

    I'm presuming an automatic closure of a thread once it's gone un-posted on for more than a specified period is beyond the Tomy My First Forum software Boards clearly uses, so maybe an addition to the charter & more mod supervision is the answer. Or maybe I'm the only person who has an issue with it.




  • woodchuck wrote: »
    How come when you look at someones posting history, their previous posts/threads in PI/RI don't appear?

    Some posters will turn out to have previous threads that add much needed context to their current issue. However most people giving advice won't be aware of this, except for the odd times when a savvy poster will figure it out. It's extremely frustrating when you've genuinely spent time giving what you think is meaningful advice, only to change your mind completely when you see the bigger picture from the other threads. Utimately not very helpful for the person seeking advice either.

    The potential for abuse far outweighs any advantage given by posters being able to search for previous PI/RI threads by a poster. Having PI/RI searchable means that anyone malicious enough to do so could easily drag up quite personal information on a poster and drag it into a public arena for ridicule.

    When it comes to the bigger picture that you mention, I appreciate that it may be frustrating at times, but we do find that regular posters in PI are quick to point out a poster's previous relevant history in-thread, before the thread goes too far in the wrong direction. Additionally, the moderators have the ability to search PI/RI threads, and can themselves quickly verify if there is relevant information elsewhere, or in the case of someone trolling, conflicting information that calls into question whether a poster is being genuine.




  • Dial Hard wrote: »
    My issue is with posters dragging up threads that have been dormant for three or four weeks (an age in PI/RI terms), which the OP mightn't even have posted in since their first post. There's a couple of posters who do this regularly, it's like they remember the forum every month or so, come in and have a browse and post on whatever tickles their fancy (and with one particular poster it's nearly always tinged with horrid Red Pill nonsense) with no regard whatsoever that the thread has been done for weeks. I report these posts all the time but they're very rarely actioned but, imo, it's the PI equivalent of digging up zombie threads.

    I'm presuming an automatic closure of a thread once it's gone un-posted on for more than a specified period is beyond the Tomy My First Forum software Boards clearly uses, so maybe an addition to the charter & more mod supervision is the answer. Or maybe I'm the only person who has an issue with it.

    I agree that it’s really annoying when a thread is bumped like that. If it’s been a thread I contributed to I’ll always check to see if the OP has come back to comment but it’s usually some random one liner. I disagree that the mods don’t action them though. I’ve found that the thread usually gets closed in that situation.




  • It used to always be the case that, for someone’s own good, there was a limit to how many threads you could start in PI about the same issue. Has that rule been changed? I ask because there’s a handful of posters who have started multiple threads, under multiple account names (which is against site rules) about the same issues. When I’ve reported them, it has largely been ignored.

    It’s very frustrating as a poster to either give helpful, thoughtful advice out of your own time and to see a new thread a week later where the OP has clearly ignored everything from the previous thread. Not only that, but in many cases, it colludes with issues that posters have that are well beyond the remit of PI.


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  • woodchuck wrote: »
    How come when you look at someones posting history, their previous posts/threads in PI/RI don't appear?

    Just on this, and I agree with Mike's post about it being open to abuse, but it would be nice to be able to see your own posts in the forum in your post history.




  • Faith wrote: »
    It used to always be the case that, for someone’s own good, there was a limit to how many threads you could start in PI about the same issue. Has that rule been changed? I ask because there’s a handful of posters who have started multiple threads, under multiple account names (which is against site rules) about the same issues. When I’ve reported them, it has largely been ignored.

    It’s very frustrating as a poster to either give helpful, thoughtful advice out of your own time and to see a new thread a week later where the OP has clearly ignored everything from the previous thread. Not only that, but in many cases, it colludes with issues that posters have that are well beyond the remit of PI.

    Hi Faith,

    I can't say I agree that reported posts on a poster who posts about the same issue multiple times get ignored, as to the best of my knowledge, every instance of this that we are made aware of is discussed in the PI mods forum, before deciding how to proceed.

    I understand where the frustration can stem from if you are on the outside looking in, but the forum mods do have access to a bigger picture, both in terms of knowing their forum and its posters, and having access to information from multiple sources, including reported posts. Given the very nature of PI, each case is a judgement call by the mods. You're certainly correct in that some posters refuse to listen to help and we do cut them off, and in the past have banned posters from PI for their own well-being, in the hope that they seek professional help. However we do need to be sensitive to posters who are not always in the best place in their lives, some of the problems they post about take a huge personal step to overcome (even though it may not appear to be that big in the impartial mind of the person on the outside giving the advice), and some people simply need to hear the same advice multiple times before building up the courage to act on it. We've also had quite a few cases where threads have been reported as being from duplicate accounts, only to find that the posters are distinctly different posters, who through unfortunate coincidence are going through extremely similar situations in their lives.

    Again, I'm not saying that posters don't have the right to be frustrated, however other than treating each case on its merits, and erring on the side of the poster, I'm not sure what else we could do that won't let genuine posters that need help slip through the cracks. PI will never achieve a perfect balance - given its emotive nature, it will always be in continuous flux. We will never be able to help everybody, and similarly we will never be able to stop all of the Walter Mitty type posters, or the serial rereg's. The best we can do is try and keep the signal to noise ratio as close to signal as possible. We're certainly open to suggestions though.




  • I'm getting very fed up of the PUA/Red Pill nonsense that's been creeping into the forum lately. It's definitely on the increase.

    Also, and I don't mean this as a barb, it's a genuine observation but the modding seems to have gone very reactive - posts that would have been actioned immediately previously seem to remain in place/un-modded for a long time. I get the impression that where the mods used to proactively moderate off their own bat, they now only react to reported posts. Maybe I'm wrong, or maybe there were just a lot of mods on holidays or something, but it's certainly something I've noticed.




  • I'm only just back from holidays Dial so we were one short for a couple of weeks. :o



    I myself depend on the Reported posts coming in, as I don't always get to read the forum like I used to. If PUA stuff is creeping in, it's not something we want here, and we will address it right away.




  • I realise the mods have lives outside Boards but the presence has fallen off a cliff again. Is it perhaps time to appoint more/different mods? I reported a shedload of posts over the weekend, a thread that isn't even an RI is still open and another OP has been requesting her thread be closed since yesterday.

    Again, I know you're all volunteers but I think that given the nature of this forum, there really needs to be a more active mod presence than there has been lately.

    Just my 2c, and I realise that I'm probably coming across as a bit of a pain in the arse.


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  • Hi Dial,
    It does seem that presence was scarce over the weekend, myself included.



    We are having chats about this in the background though and are working on how best to fix that asap.



    Thanks.




  • Is there anyway that mods can crack down on the constant sexism from a few regular contributers?

    I find it very frustrating, and I don't think this forum is the right place for debating gender politics.

    Its the same posters every time.




  • I have concerns from time to time, in relation to threads as to what the poster is actually looking for.

    I think it would be useful to remind posters that even though they are sharing often quite personal experiences with 100% good intentions, they may well be feeding a troll / someone whose intentions in opening the thread might not be all that they seem.




  • Meaningful thread titles. I know this has come up here before but the prevalence of vague thread titles in RI and PI is very frustrating, sometimes we even have two threads on the same screen with the same titles about two totally different issues.




  • SirChenjin wrote: »
    I have concerns from time to time, in relation to threads as to what the poster is actually looking for.

    I think it would be useful to remind posters that even though they are sharing often quite personal experiences with 100% good intentions, they may well be feeding a troll / someone whose intentions in opening the thread might not be all that they seem.

    I share those concerns. I've seen it on other forums where trolling or feeding off someone else's trauma is common. Some trolls keep it going for years. We are limited here in that we can't always know for sure if someone is genuine or not, but we may have to give the benefit of the doubt in some cases.

    Usually there's a fair bit of checking on the background but sometimes I do have to say to myself that even if a particular thread is setting off my troll radar, if I can't prove it, it might be of benefit to someone reading it who's going through the same situation.

    Sometimes we have edited or deleted a thread where it's clear the OP is not being careful online and is posting identifying information of theirs or others. Please report any posts where this is happening and we will snip out what's necessary. People's privacy is important to us.

    This is also why we have zero tolerance for anyone known to have private messaged posters. It's to protect both parties insofar as we can. For a genuine OP, they could be vulnerable and get targeted by a troll or catfished into meeting in real life. For a member, it's to stop vulnerable people from using you as their online crutch and not facing and dealing with their issues in real life, and for the member, to not have them have the impossibility of feeling responsible for an online person's welfare.

    We would ask everyone who is a regular of the forum to always let us know if you are aware of anyone private messaging another as a result of a PI thread. Genuine advice can always be given on thread. If someone wants to share a personal experience in order to help an OP they can either post anon or get permission from mods for a second account to be used for that thread only. Private messages can also be reported directly to admins by hitting the report message icon.




  • Caranica wrote: »
    Meaningful thread titles. I know this has come up here before but the prevalence of vague thread titles in RI and PI is very frustrating, sometimes we even have two threads on the same screen with the same titles about two totally different issues.


    That's something we can certainly work on.




  • Neyite wrote: »
    I share those concerns. I've seen it on other forums where trolling or feeding off someone else's trauma is common. Some trolls keep it going for years. We are limited here in that we can't always know for sure if someone is genuine or not, but we may have to give the benefit of the doubt in some cases.

    Usually there's a fair bit of checking on the background but sometimes I do have to say to myself that even if a particular thread is setting off my troll radar, if I can't prove it, it might be of benefit to someone reading it who's going through the same situation.

    Yes, I am a member of another forum which at this stage is trolled extensively. This made me even more alert to it happening here.

    I report anything I have concerns about. I appreciate that it's not always possible for the Mods to be 100% sure if someone is above board or not.

    I think overall, this is a very good forum with a lot of good advice given.




  • I think any kind of arguing between two posters should be gently stopped.

    It contributes to a lot of the atmosphere in the thread.

    I think if you don't agree don't quote don't respond. You don't have to say no no don't do that and add an insult to the poster who posted it. Just post your own opinion and filter out the white noise of things that you feel are not constructive.

    I notice when a thread goes down that road. Other posters start doing the same thing to each other. And the whole thread goes that way.

    Also less of the tough love. We dont know the OPs. And I dont think there has ever been a thread started on here when i thought the poster was a bad person or anything. I don't think the tough love is useful or needed. And if it is you can be creative about it.




  • I think any kind of arguing between two posters should be gently stopped.

    It contributes to a lot of the atmosphere in the thread.

    I think if you don't agree don't quote don't respond. You don't have to say no no don't do that and add an insult to the poster who posted it. Just post your own opinion and filter out the white noise of things that you feel are not constructive.

    I notice when a thread goes down that road. Other posters start doing the same thing to each other. And the whole thread goes that way.

    Also less of the tough love. We dont know the OPs. And I dont think there has ever been a thread started on here when i thought the poster was a bad person or anything. I don't think the tough love is useful or needed. And if it is you can be creative about it.

    Some folks need tough love or a kick up the arse.
    Regarding posters arguing....sometimes people post utter nonsense, and sometimes people feel it’s their responsibility to help the op and assure them that it’s bad advice they’re reading. If a good few people thank the post, then chances are that’s the general consensus.




  • Dtp1979 wrote: »
    Some folks need tough love or a kick up the arse.
    Regarding posters arguing....sometimes people post utter nonsense, and sometimes people feel it’s their responsibility to help the op and assure them that it’s bad advice they’re reading. If a good few people thank the post, then chances are that’s the general consensus.

    Well often people's perception of tough love differs so we as moderators tend to not appreciate it at all to be honest. There are a few reasons: Usually a tough love post can get a lot of thanks so that kind of posting style appeals to some thanks-whores who don't have the OP's best interests in mind. Secondly, what you might see as tough love another might see as being nasty or unnecessarily unkind, and thirdly, it tends to set the tone of a thread so subsequent replies usually are in the same vein or worse and definitely stray into the 'being nasty for the sake of it'

    Being direct and constructive is fine - we have plenty of those posters and they are valued. But if you can't phrase your Arse Kicking kindly and considerately to someone who's troubled by their issue then tbh you are not a poster we would welcome here.

    The bottom line is that we ask all posters to keep the focus on helping an OP. There may be very different suggestions offered and that can be great to get a range of options to a problem. Some advice is bonkers and there's no harm in another poster pointing out the flaws in that advice, as long as it's focused on the problem the OP has and they dont' get drawn into a side-squabble and drag the thread off topic.


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  • The tough love approach is not a one size fits all thing either, and it does seem to be the only gear some contributors have; they're not appraising an OP or situation and applying it judiciously.

    More often than not, in my observation, when there's a chorus of "tough love" responses the OP just leaves and it's just other people arguing back and forth. Other times the OP just gets defensive and intransigent. Sometimes people do respond well but I'd argue that a) that's a minority and b) it's really just a case of throwing enough stuff at the wall and some of it's bound to stick sometimes.

    I know it's been suggested before but is there anything to be said for removing the thanks function altogether on here?




  • I think the thanks function is mostly a good thing. It saves people giving the same advice over and over again. While it can be flawed, it also can serve as an indicator as to what most posters think is good advice. When people give advice that is bonkers, the lack of thanks is a guideline in itself as to what other people think of it.




  • I think the thanks function has its (limited) benefits in here, it can indicate what most posters think the "best" advice is, even if they don't post. But I do see your point.

    Generally I don't put a lot of stock in thanks, for me I like to think I can stand over my advice even if no one else agrees with it, but it can give you pause for thought.

    It's a double edged sword cos I do think there are posters who post whatever they think is popular, "funny" or witty in order to gather thanks, even if it's not nice. And as Neyite says that can set the tone for the rest of the thread. But I think that it's more for the mods to worry about and weed that out as it happens (which we genuinely try to do).

    I'm not mad about tough love either. There is a difference between giving advice that the OP needs to hear but might not like, and being mean and dismissive for the sake of it.




  • Maybe we should stop replying to other posters at all and only reply to the OP.




  • wiggle16 wrote: »
    I think the thanks function has its (limited) benefits in here, it can indicate what most posters think the "best" advice is, even if they don't post. But I do see your point.

    Generally I don't put a lot of stock in thanks, for me I like to think I can stand over my advice even if no one else agrees with it, but it can give you pause for thought.

    I'm not mad about tough love either. There is a difference between giving advice that the OP needs to hear but might not like, and being mean and dismissive for the sake of it.

    I agree with all of the above.

    I'm definitely not a fan of the 'tough love' approach either. In fairness to those who try to offer help and advice here, I think the vast majority post in a thoughtful fashion, conscious of the fact that there is a human being on the other side.
    Someone who probably had to gather courage to post in the first place. It's not an easy thing to do, to open up to others, even on an anonymous forum.




  • Just a thought - should all new threads have to be approved by a mod? It would remove a lot of the "Is this a PI?" "Is this a troll?" stuff.

    Also, there was a thread recently that was open for a few days, got deleted for the guts of a week and then suddenly reappeared again with absolutely no comment whatsoever on anything. I know we're not entitled to be privy to *why* mod decisions are made but an acknowledgement that action/intervention has taken place is good practice, no???




  • Dial Hard wrote: »
    Just a thought - should all new threads have to be approved by a mod? It would remove a lot of the "Is this a PI?" "Is this a troll?" stuff.

    Also, there was a thread recently that was open for a few days, got deleted for the guts of a week and then suddenly reappeared again with absolutely no comment whatsoever on anything. I know we're not entitled to be privy to *why* mod decisions are made but an acknowledgement that action/intervention has taken place is good practice, no???

    Which thread was that? I was modding solo for a bit over the last couple of weeks until recently, so it's possible that it was something Butterfingers16 here did accidentally, or was trying to do or undo :rolleyes: Could you send me a link to it if possible?
    Generally, if we have had to interfere with a thread significantly, like deleting multiple posts or something, we will put on a mod note to explain what's been done. Obviously it isn't feasible to do that with more minor actions or the forum would be unreadable, but with things like merging threads etc we will generally put a note.

    I can't speak for the other moderators, but I have thought about pre-moderated threads myself and my thinking on it is that we don't really get enough "not for PI" threads to warrant it. Usually a thread that doesn't belong in PI will get moved along elsewhere or closed fairly quickly. I don't know if we would get enough of a benefit from pre-moderation at the expense of posters being able to start threads freely.

    If a thread has been started by a troll they don't tend to last that long, but that depends how obvious it is. We try to err on the side of presuming honesty from posters, and typically a troll will give themselves away after a couple of replies or less even if their opening post was plausible.

    I'm defo open to other ideas on that but myself I think the current system is what works best long term, even for its drawbacks.




  • I've been meaning to post this for ages but having seen a comment posted 5 hours ago that called the op a prostitute while not using that word, it's pushed me over the edge.

    The open and veiled misogyny on these supposedly supportive forums of late is mind blowing. Women are automatically cheating, and accused of all sorts if a guy has any doubts. While some of the doubts might be well founded, the language, tone and assumptions have been downright horrible. These fora are supposed to be safe place. They don't feel that way lately.




  • There’s definitely an element of sexism that has crept into boards as a whole lately, though I feel both the mods here and PI as a whole do as good as possible job of shutting it down when necessary.

    But, like I said, it’s a boards issue as a whole and possibly indicative of how a significant sub-sector of society feels: we live in a world where Donald Trump and Boris Johnson are elected, major world leaders. So how do you regulate that? Do you try push down those ugly, but very real, world views and pretend they don’t exist and, in effect, try control what the ‘right’ thing to say is? The only effect that has shown is to have is that you provoke an angry response from the ignorant who aren’t any less ignorant because they’re just being shoved aside instead of educated.

    My own thoughts are to allow people to air their views and engage with them and show them that they’re wrong, even if it’s ugly. They may never publicly admit that they’re wrong, but they’ll have nowhere to go with their POV and you can convince a lot of the middle ground that way. Relating it back to PI, of course you have to be mindful of the serious stakes some of these threads have and adjust accordingly, eg if an OP may be suicidal etc. There’s a balancing act, for sure, and while I probably largely am appalled by similar things to you Caranica, I’m never in favour of “ban opinions I don’t like” simply because it’s a proven ineffective way of dealing with them. If you see something you don’t like, educate the person who said it.


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  • Oh it's definitely a Boardswide issue but I can ignore it in AH and Current Affairs/IMHO for exactly the reasons you mention Leggo but PI and RI are very sensitive fora and I don't think it's fair in these. That prostitute post is still up and tbh I'm horrified. I'm no snowflake, just someone who believes that someone asking for help should not be treated in this way.


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