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Thread: Deleted thread

  1. #1
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    Default Deleted thread

    I just deleted a thread about a well-known Alaskan who was cited for allegedly taking a moose just within the border of a national park in Alaska.

    About a year and a half ago, I decided that we would not be discussing items occurring in police blotters. The content in the Anchorage Daily News story above is not different in its essence from that occurring in a police blotter. Therefore, I deleted the thread.

    My chief concern was and is fairness. Here is what I wrote in September 2006:

    I have deleted a thread in this forum, and edited another that related to alleged violations of Alaska game laws. The first provided information from the trooper reports, and the discussion took off from there.

    It is true that the information in the police and state trooper reports is public information. Newspapers have often printed this material over the years, and there may be some value in that. However, I doubt the wisdom of discussion of those reports in an interactive media like these forums. There is too much potential for unwarranted character defamation.

    The first problem I see is that the accused do not necessarily have an opportunity to respond to the conversation. They might not even be aware of the online discussion. Even if they might want to participate in the discussion, their legal advisors may caution them against it. Another problem is that if later the charges are dropped, or a jury finds the accused innocent, the character defamation is already done. And, there may be no way of adding that important ending to the discussion.

    After discussion on this topic, the hunting forum moderators have agreed that we will no longer permit the contents of police blotters or state trooper dispatches, etc. to be copied and pasted here, and discussion of material from that source will not be allowed. I am posting appropriate changes in the forum FAQ.

    Substantial discussion ensued on my decision, but my basic concern has not changed: it's a matter of fairness. Our discussion here could turn into an online pillory, and the accused could later turn out to be found innocent -- but his reputation tarnished by our words.

    Some of the issues raised in the deleted thread were worthy of further discussion; for example, what about poorly marked national park boundaries, and what about struck animals that cross into a closed area before expiring. If someone wants to raise those issues again, please do so.

    In the case that caused me to put police blotter material off limits, the accused was found guilty. Once the decision of the jury was reached, discussion was allowed here.

    David

  2. #2

    Default Suggestion

    My only suggestion would maybe be to delete the name but not the entire thread. Had this not been a "well known Alaskan" would the same treatment apply? A couple examples come to mind. Back in December i am sure we all remember the thread titled "Merry Christmas Fort Wainwright". These were all Soldiers that allegedly lied on their applications to gain residencey early. Like this case it was in the blotter and in the paper and we all let loose on them and judged them. Not saying your decision was wrong lets just try to give everyone the same treatment/benefit of the doubt.

  3. #3
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    Default

    It bothers me a little bit when it is public information yet we are forbidden to discuss it here.

    It smells of preferential treatment rather than fairness.

    Yeah, yeah, I know, I don't own this site and the owner can make any rule he likes. I can accept that.

    Note: I didn't see the original post and don't care to speculate on the situation.

  4. #4
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    Default Consistency

    I appreciate the comments about consistency....applying the same rules to all. We try to be consistent about these things, but I know we sometimes fail.

    In the case of the Ft. Wainwright thread, the difference there was that the story was about a pattern of lying about residency status for F&G licenses rather than individual offenses. I didn't have a problem with that.

    David

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    Member RainGull's Avatar
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    Default

    This equates to a ban on discussion of all pending legal matters.

    My chief concern was and is fairness.
    I appreciate the comments about consistency....applying the same rules to all. We try to be consistent about these things, but I know we sometimes fail.
    Substantial discussion ensued on my decision, but my basic concern has not changed: it's a matter of fairness. Our discussion here could turn into an online pillory, and the accused could later turn out to be found innocent -- but his reputation tarnished by our words.
    In the case that caused me to put police blotter material off limits, the accused was found guilty. Once the decision of the jury was reached, discussion was allowed here.
    The content in the Anchorage Daily News story above is not different in its essence from that occurring in a police blotter.
    Clearly this equates to a ban of the discussion of all pending legal matters. Else selective enforcement of the rule is inherent, which flies in the face of a purported effort at fairness.
    Science has a rich history of proving itself wrong.

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    Default

    God bless America...

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    Default surprising deletion

    Guess I'm pretty surprised that a thread was deleted. I didn't get a chance to read any of the postings, but since I've read many many articals on here on those exact subjects that to see it deleted was interesting to say the least.

    But as was noted earlier, it's not our site.

    God Bless China.... heh heh!
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  8. #8

    Default

    When you are famous your reputation is all you have. The person not named deserves a chance to have his say before getting ripped. IMO.

    I myself would be VERY nervous hunting in area that was that close to "out of bounds." I wish I could get the GMUs to overlay on my Topo 2008 software.

    Program in the GMU I want to stay in and set an alarm that warns me at 1000yds 500yds 250yds, etc.

    As for the famous guy, he may have made a mistake, but you would think he would have been more careful. After all like it has been said, his reputation is pretty much all he has. Going to lose his sponsors real quick if this gets nasty in the papers....

  9. #9
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by 1911-MW View Post
    ............ I wish I could get the GMUs to overlay on my Topo 2008 software.

    Program in the GMU I want to stay in and set an alarm that warns me at 1000yds 500yds 250yds, etc.
    ...........
    Way off topic, so I'll be brief.
    There is a way (with most GMU). If interested start a new thread and I'll respond.

  10. #10
    Member Matt's Avatar
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    Default

    About 50% of the topics get deleted around here.

  11. #11
    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Matt View Post
    About 50% of the topics get deleted around here.
    While you may not agree with how we run things, you may want to take a closer look. I would bet that less than 2% of all threads get deleted.

  12. #12
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    Lightbulb % deletion

    Brian's right, Matt. Thread deletions run under half a percent (not counting Swap n Sell sold items which we delete for posters, and the spam which the moderators usually kill off before you ever see it). The flip side of that is that 99.5% of the threads posted fly.

    David

    Quote Originally Posted by Matt View Post
    About 50% of the topics get deleted around here.

  13. #13

    Thumbs down Brenda Valentine

    Didn't we just have a huge discussion of Brenda Valentine from the Outdoor Channel. It's very clear that we pick an choose what get's deleted and what stays.

    In fact do a search you can still see the jabs she got.

  14. #14
    Member martentrapper's Avatar
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    Default

    When a discussion is deleted, members lose an opportunity to learn from that discussion. The thread in question here has VERY relavent issues about boundaries and hunting near them.
    If all the other forums in the internet universe held themselves to the same standard as ODD, then David Johnsons position would be sensible. That ain't the case. From my experience, most other forums allow most all things that are regularly deleted here. I suspect the particular topic here that got deleted is being discussed as we speak on other forums. Example: both ADN and the newsminer have comment boards that allow WAY WAY more then is allowed here.
    Another point: Once the info and name is out, the person is being discussed all over the state, even the nation, in face to face conversations, and in emails between folks. If ODD's rules were making a noticeable difference in the persons life, we could salute ODD and praise Mr. Johnson. That ain't so, and the only outcome of your position David is to lessen the opportunity for members to learn.
    I can't help being a lazy, dumb, weekend warrior.......I have a JOB!
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  15. #15

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by webmaster View Post
    The content in the Anchorage Daily News story above is not different in its essence from that occurring in a police blotter.
    When we can't discuss an active Alaska hunting news story, on an Alaska hunting website, what does that say about the quality of this site? I know... let's ask about Forest Service cabins for the umpteenth time. Perhaps a name change to the Alaska Outdoors Directory Archives would be appropriate.

    I see there's a link labeled 'NEWS' at the top of the page. Can't see wasting my time clicking on that...

  16. #16
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    Default Double standard

    This whole tread is really discouraging me from using this forum. Total double standard and to proof my point here is a couple of the many examples of a double standard.

    http://forums.outdoorsdirectory.com/...ght=bryan+lamb

    http://forums.outdoorsdirectory.com/...t=stuck+tundra

    http://forums.outdoorsdirectory.com/...t=tundra+truck


    That took less than 2 minutes to find these two with out alot of research. When its one of alaska's finest its ok to delete the thread. Or, is this a new standard.

    Terry

  17. #17

    Default

    What's most surprising to me, is that this thread has not been moved by one of the sub-moderators. After all, it's certainly not hunting related, at least not now.

  18. #18
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Terry View Post
    When its one of alaska's finest its ok to delete the thread. Or, is this a new standard.

    Terry
    Terry - Thanks for the feedback. Even if we don't always see things the same way, we appreciate hearing how people feel.

    I will say that the above threads that you mentioned do not constitute a double standard. If you read David's post above, you'll see that the standard for deletion includes naming of the accused and an open case. If names are not mentioned, as in the case of the infamous tundra trucks, the thread will be allowed to stand. If the accused party is convicted or pleads guilty, as in the case of the Byron Lamb thread cited above, it is also fair game for discussion. The standard is pretty clear, and we do our best to adhere to it. We do not want to get to a place where judgement of another's character and actions is fair game when the facts of the case are not known. That is obviously the case in this matter, regardless of who the accused is. None of us know the man in question, nor do we owe him any allegiance or offer him special treatment. We will try to offer the same treatment to any person accused of a crime until such time as the facts are legally settled.

    shawn - Thanks for pointing out our mistake in missing the threads about Ms. Valentine. They have been removed as well.

  19. #19
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    Default

    Delete some more threads. The whinning afterward is usually more entertaining than the original topic

  20. #20
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    Default A different drummer

    I'm not very interested in what other people are doing or how other forums manage these issues. I don't base my ethics on how the crowd is behaving at some particular point in time or on the results of public opinion surveys. I manage these forums in the way that seems right to me.

    "Learning" at the cost of someone else's reputation doesn't seem like a very good deal to me, and I don't think it would seem so to someone falsely accused. If the learning is about the issues of boundaries and game that dies on the wrong side....then let the threads begin. Let's just leave the names and police reports out of it.

    The point here is to avoid the online pillory effect, as pointed out earlier. I hope no one here is ever accused of a violation or crime, but if it happens, the moderators and I would do our best to extend to you the same protection....until such time as the jury reached a verdict or there was a guilty/nolo plea.

    David

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