NOTICE TO FORUM SYSOP(S) : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

I have not previously been able to conceive of myself as ever being in agreement with "Mutha", but here we are, and I am. You have established censorship on this forum and, without the stature of Ed Yourdon to operate from, you have laid a fatal precedent.

You have now declared yourselves to be the word police with your statement, "Please refrain from using obscene language, or the post will be deleted."

Your use of the word, "please" is inconsistent with your notification that you will censor the forum. Either ask everyone to cooperate and live with those who do not or be honest enough to admit that what you consider obscene will not be allowed.

Did any of you by chance follow the national debate on this issue and observe the subsequent vote in the Congress over the "Communications Decency Act"? You are quite openly holding yourselves as in opposition to that decision.

It is said that imitation is the most sincere form of flattery. What has been initiated here is not that flattering to Ed Yourdon. My recollection of his actions is that he would, on request, review and, if in his judgment appropriate, remove offending postings or language. This is significantly different than your current stated policy in that such postings were first seen by all (or at least available to all to see) and were dealt with on request of someone on the forum. I would imagine that in a real life forum, if someone showed up and vomited into the discussion area or defecated in the punchbowl, as it were, there would be immediate and forceful cries for removal of same. The critical difference here is whether the removal is in response to the desires of the participants or arbitrarily at the discretion of the censors. It is to Ed Yourdon's great credit that none of his actions in this vein were ever protested (at least not to the best of my knowledge) by any save perhaps the transgressing "troll".

I mean to in no way encourage or advocate the use of coarse or vulgar language, but it surely is clear that there are coarse and vulgar people in this world. We all have to deal with them in real life and to simply cover your eyes and remove them from sight, here, is to create an artificially civil environment that can no longer rightfully be called a "forum". If peer pressure from the majority is insufficient, absolute censorship is intolerable. If you persist (as is apparent you have the ability), at least cease to refer to this construct as a forum and call it a censored bulletin board, as it will surely become. It is a sad but probable outcome of such action that the "trolls" that you seem to fear so much will be proven correct and that this forum will self destruct.

Now as to the "moderation" part of your title, I wish to make it plain that if you "moderate", you will exclude the extreme; that's what the word means. In fact what you will do is create a much smaller place for the exchange of thought. The extremes, whether sublime and ridiculous, noble and evil, or beautiful and foul serve the vital function of defining the center and by virtue of defining such extremes to suit your values as "moderators", you will become truly arbiters of the entire spectrum.

The "troll attacks" which you decry with such disdain, are very much like the attacks of mosquitos, bacteria or other parasitic organisms. We have learned through our medical community that a sterile environment produces patients who have no natural resistance to disease. I would suggest that if we are not strong enough to tolerate the annoyance of these "trolls" or wise enough to deal with them by inattention, then we deserve to be overcome as they will be shown to be stronger (as is Nature's way) or we will be shown to be weaker, depending on perspective. Compared to the potential of Y2K, a "troll attack" is as a whiff of flatulent gas in a windstorm. If we are unable to deal with such, there is no hope for us in many of the possible outcomes of Y2K. I submit that we are not wasting our time in dealing with such, but building tolerance and perhaps strength (at least in some small measure) for the future.

Patrick Henry did indeed say, ""I do not agree with what you have to say, but I'll defend to the death your right to say it."

Your conclusion that, "That does not mean we are required to put up with those who heckle and do not contribute to the Y2K discussions.", is correct, but to fail to do so will acknowledge that they have already won. Recall your own reaction to the Secret Service hustling out of sight someone who asks an embarrassing question or disrupts the "party agenda". Compare it with the memory of a skillful orator such as Will Rogers who had a ready comeback or an honest and relevant answer for such people. If you fear them so greatly, by all means, keep them out or "shoot them on sight", but if you would have truly free speech and would endure the annoyance in quest of actual Liberty (as opposed to simple lip service), then you must allow them to have their say, no matter how disagreeable or foul, before rendering judgment.

I wish also, to make clear that I do not in any way shape or form ascribe less than the best of intentions to the "moderator(s)". If I had done so, I should not have taken the time nor expended the effort to write this. I do suspect however, that in your zeal to make this forum a better place that you have overlooked a few of the basic tenets on which our civilization (at least according to the Constitution and Declaration of Independence) ostensibly rests.

One final point. You request, "--please attack the messag(e)--not the messenger." It would be more appropriate to ask that one not attack the messenger unless the messenger is the problem. You affirm this principle quite clearly with your stated intention to edit or delete postings which fall outside your "guidelines" and are brought by "trolls". There seems to be a common misconception that the term ad hominem (which means "against the man") refers to any attack on "the messenger" and is invariably out of order and logically invalid. Such is not the case. The ad hominem fallacy occurs when an unrelated personal characteristic is used to refute an argument. It is a form of non sequitur. Thus to attack a witness' testimony on the grounds that he is a convicted perjurer is quite valid and proper (although clearly directed "against the man") while an attack against his religious beliefs would be (except in very specialized circumstances such as theological argument) irrelevant.

It is apparently your decision, and the time indeed grows short. I am certain that you will devote your best efforts to the task which you have undertaken. While I am reasonably certain that few would choose to view filth in print or suffer verbal abuse by a "troll", it is not quite so clear what the price of relief may be. Please consider carefully the ideas and values that I have presented because surely the future of this forum depends on such.

-- Hardliner (, June 06, 1999


Hardliner makes the good point some here have been trying to make but have been as succinct.

The First Amendment, minus the emotional baggage that have been attached to it by the die hard liberal politcal correctness mafia, still stands. This country was founded on the idea that we have the right to speak freely, anywhere, anytime, day or night. They created the Second Amendment so we would never be denied the First.

-- (, June 06, 1999.

Thank you. Well put.

-- Quiet (Observer@watching.them), June 06, 1999.

Attention Censors....errr..moderators:

Hardliner used the word "flatulence". I am offended. Please edit or delete Hardliner's post.

Thank You

-- John (, June 06, 1999.

Hardliner, I agree. Well written!

-- Barb (, June 06, 1999.

John, I am deeply offended by your use of the word"flatulence"in regards to your comment about Hardliner's post in which he used the "f"word as well and I think the forum sysop(s) should delete your post as well!

-- Barb (, June 06, 1999.

Hardliner: Did you catch the post to Maria by the person using my name? That is the type of language they are talking about censoring, not an occasional f word. And there was no reason not to remove it. It belonged on a porn site, not here.

What about posting personal info Hardliner? After all, first amendment says we have the right to know.

The forum moderators aren't stupid. They are just trying to protect our legacy from the forces of ignorance that want to see it become unusable

-- a (a@a.a), June 06, 1999.


Having run my own internet based forum for 4 years (non-Y2K), I have more than a passing appreciation for these issues.

We had hundreds of off-topic posts, commercial spams, a few problems with uncivilized behavior and one person (in 4 years) who took it upon themselves to threaten physical violence.

As I was seeking to attract high calibre participants to an open forum, I had to accomodate not only the professional but the layperson as well.

As the level of noise increased, I began to receive complaints from a great many of the people who I most wanted to retain at the site. Indeed, it was their participation that made the forum as popular as it was. Laypeople could get questions answered by a broad range of professionals. I could never have paid these professionals to spend time at the forum so it was essential that I provide an environment that attracted them - but at the same time did not alienate the general public.

The solution that I chose was based on two parts:

  1. A written policy, prominently published
  2. Flexible forum software

Let me start with the second item. I chose O'Reiley's Web Board software because it allowed me to created a multi-topic discussion area. I created discussion groups for each relevant category. Then I created a "Misc" category where pretty much anything was considered OK or 'on topic'. Next I created a couple of 'spammable' discussion areas where those who had commericial offering could freely post. Finally, I created a closed forum for professionals-only.

Then I created a written policy which stated, in a nutshell, that participants could post pretty much anything they wanted to so long as it was posted in the proper location. Spams/commercial posts must go to the forum reserved for that purpose. Specific topic areas must remain on topic and off topic posts would be deleted without notice. If you were unsure of which area applied, then direct your post to the miscellaneous area and it won't get deleted. New discussion areas would be created upon request. If they saw enough traffic to justify their existance, they stayed, otherwise they went the way of the Edsel.

Further, I went on to state that verbally abusive or threatening posts would simply not be tolerated. In the 4 years that I ran the forum, I only had to take action against one individual who was making threats of physical violence against other forum participants. Turned out the person was a high school student in Minneapolis who was using the computer in the school library to assault the group. Due to the serious nature of the threats, the police became involved and charges were filed. This was the only serious incident the forum ever had.

By giving nearly everybody a place to engage in what they considered to be relevant topics or discussion, I did not have to make very many judgement calls as to what was 'on topic' or not. I did not overly impose my personal point of view on the group as a whole.

But by restricting some postings to specific areas, I was also able to turn the noise level down for the people whose participation I very much wanted to encourage.

The software also allowed me to assigned 'sub administrators' for specific areas so that I did not have to watch the board 24 hours a day. Several of the professionals were happy to keep an eye on the forum for me. I made it clear that I felt deleting a post was an extreme action and should only be taken if it was a clear or repeated violation. If the violation was clearly accidental or not terribly abusive, a quick polite email to the poster was usually sufficient.

In addition, Web Board provided some basic indexing/search capabilities that let participants search a single discussion area or multiple areas if they chose.

The software used for this board does not appear to be as flexible as does Web Board for supporting the kind of structure that I've decribed above. But I feel the solution was a good one without being overly authoritarian. By giving 99 percent of the people a chance to voice their opinions and thoughts, I was able to attract and keep those people who I felt added the most value to the group.

-- Arnie Rimmer (, June 06, 1999.

Ill throw in my pennys worth here too.

Hardliner, as always you set the tone as an honorable Marine would. (Wish you were President!) However, when you join a group, like the Marines, et. al., arent there rules of conduct, as well as engagement?

Because our freedom of speech is something were willing to die for, many of us agree with the Founding Fathers and their fight resulting in our liberty. We also agree with common sense things like.. Doan spit inna drinkin water if ya wanna stay healthy. Ill be crude here (gasp) but if you piss in the pond, you gotta go elsewhere for a good drink.

Ive noticed that we have people, or trolls (who knows), complaining to high heaven, as a newbie they are offended and are leaving. Yet everyday newcomers visit too. The regulars post and the lurkers lurk and the flamers flame, etc. Im doing some research on the topic (no surprise there) and looking at what other forums are doing. Sticking the links here:

NOTICE: To Forum Posters Re: Trolls and Moderation 000uxC

Its seems like they all post rules of engagement. (Ill keep looking for more).

Isnt the Constitution of the United States one such set of rules?

My VOTE, if there is such a thing, is to have some posted suggestions or rules of engagement thought I HATE the term rules.


(Arnie, do you still have copies of... A written policy, prominently published? Can you post them for us to read?)

-- Diane J. Squire (, June 06, 1999.

Diane, your answer sounds like what some antigun groups want to do in this country. "But look at what other countries are doing. Austalia, England, North korea, they all took away citizens guns, so why shouldn't we". It doesn't wash with gun control, and it doesn't wash here.

-- Ralph (_@_._), June 06, 1999.

Many posters use the word "God." I consider that word and the very concept obscene. Please delete any such posts. Thank you.

-- A (, June 06, 1999.


The First Amendment "Freedom of Speech" only applies to GOVERNMENTAL censorship. This is a forum run by PRIVATE individuals. They can damn well censor whatever they want. If you don't like it, start your own forum. I don't mean to sound 'hard' here but that's the beauty of this country. You can always go and make your voice heard somewhere else.

Personally, I think that from time to time harsh language can help make a point. But I don't run the show around here so I have no say in the matter.

Give the Sysops a break. It's not like anyone is paying them to do this you know...


-- TECH32 (TECH32@NOMAIL.COM), June 06, 1999.

peoples "rights" and "responsibilities" are two different things. If you can't sort them out or know how to control yourselves, then you will lose those "rights". A privately owned and moderated has the "right" and "responsibility" to post rules of etiquette and bylaws if you will. Clubs do it and other intiries.

I had a "right" to spit, but for on your rug.

Bob P

-- Bob P (, June 06, 1999.


Yes, I saw the post that you referred to before it was removed. I knew on sight that you had not posted it because it was so radically different from all the posts of yours that I've read over the past months. In the case of a "newbie" who may not have had the benefit of such recollection for comparison, it could well be appropriate for the sysop(s) to add an annotation to the effect that, "This post was not made by the rightful owner of the "handle" given". As you might imagine though, after a lifetime in the Marine Corps, there is little in the way of verbal filth or coarseness that I have not been exposed to (you should hear a Chief Boatswain's Mate who has slipped and fallen into the results of a boot Marine's seasickness!) and it neither altered my opinion nor injured me. That post was simply cyber-graffiti and our desire to hide it is simply an indication of our inability to ignore it. (I have it on good authority that some pre-historic graffiti has, simply by virtue of the passage of time, become archeological treasure!) I believe that we must not let the intensity of our disgust hide from us the fact that the absolute value that we attach to a principle (in this case Free Speech) is measured by our willingness to extend it to the least among us rather than how willing we are to allot it to our more "well behaved" members.

It sounds like someone has given you a bogus copy of the first amendment. It reads:

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances."

There is nothing there that has ever even been interpreted as a "right to know". Personal information is private and should remain so. Although there is not a great deal outside of Y2K that I agree with Dr. North about, this is a notable exception. The introduction to his website used to contain the following (I don't know if it's still there or not):

"Privacy is a Constitutional right in the United States. It is also a highly respected asset on the Web. I suspect the motives of anyone who suggests that there is something suspicious about the right of privacy."

I hope that nothing that I have written gives anyone the impression that I think the moderator(s) stupid. I do not. I clearly stated my beliefs as to their motives above.


You write and think so clearly that you make a complex and difficult task seem easy! I'm sure that you could offer the moderator(s) a great deal by virtue of your experience.

You have described a viable and successful solution to a problem which undoubtedly has much in common with this forum yet differs in several significant areas.

As you point out, the software for this forum is unlikely to allow the diversity of discussion areas that seems so appropriate, but perhaps the current effort at "chat groups" will serve somewhat in that capacity. If so, it should off-load some of the postings in the forum to EMail, which may or may not turn out to benefit the forum as a whole.

In the matter of participants' behavior toward each other, our society has rules in place that define what is acceptable in the way of speech to another. I'm sure that you learned something of these when you dealt with the individual who threatened someone. As in the case of "gun laws", rules will only deter the law abiding and we have enough of both (rules and law abiding posters) already. We all are charged with knowledge of what is right and wrong in our society and the moderator(s), no less than anyone else, have not only a right, but an obligation to enforce those rules here. Certainly the medium of cyberspace poses special challenges to that effort, and it sounds like you've met a number of them in a previous life. It would seem, unfortunately, that the tools (software) that enabled you to implement those solutions are not to be available here. I'll still bet that you can improvise and come up with some excellent ways to deal with the issues.

The problem here, it seems to me, as opposed to the situation you described, is that we only have one place for everyone to express themselves. In such circumstances, I only see two alternatives, those being to "grin and bear it" and live with the garbage and the "trolls" or become what we are already accused of being; a limited and exclusionary group. In my opinion, even though the limits be far out and the exclusions few, the charge holds and eventually the limits would contract and the exclusions would increase.

It seems to me that we shouldn't re-invent the wheel in an attempt to avoid picking up a few nails and going flat once in a while.

-- Hardliner (, June 06, 1999.


Your point about "rules" is well taken. Rather than repeat myself, let me refer you to my reply to Arnie, above.


Your remarks about paying the sysop(s) is the most determinative in terms of what rules may apply to this forum. Although there are some differences in what the government is required to allow and what a private entity is allowed to restrict, generally First Amendment rights are, as advertised, "inalienable". What the First Amendment does not do is require anyone to provide a forum for public discourse nor prevent them from dissolving such once established. While in operation however, public places (such as this forum) are pretty much "free speech" areas. Denial of Civil Rights is a pretty serious charge to defend against.

The reason that I singled out the "paying" remark is that as I recall, Phil Greenspun told us that this forum and the others on this server are operating under a grant of some sort. I promise you, if the federal government is in any way providing even one penny of that grant money, federal law and regulation will be the order of the day.

That seems moot to me though. The Bill of Rights is not only the law of the land, but an example of the way we should treat each other. If we choose to ignore the principles laid down in our core social documents, what right have we to demand any particular conduct of those we perceive as "trolls"?

-- Hardliner (, June 06, 1999.

Unless I'm mistaken, we are all supposed adults here? As adults I asume we have all heard four letter words, and survived it. We have all been flamed by people that ment more to us than a polly loud mouth. I don't need a baby sitter ( no offence to the kind and generouse people that took on the burdon of keeping this forum on the web, I can't thank you enough ) I missed the offending post, so forgive me if I'm out of line, but the only reason I can see to censor a post, would be for posting personal info. That is an invasion of privacy ,bad manners, and possibly something you might want to see a lawyer about.

What's all the snivleing about?

-- CT (ct@no.yr), June 06, 1999.

While I'm not a big fan of swearing on a public forum, I have done it myself. If someone uses a four letter word to emphasize a point once in a while, I don't see anything wrong with it, as long as the over-all "tone" of the post is constructive. However, if someone posts something like "You're all a bunch of @#$%^&* ()_+|{}." that doesn't really add anything here, I see no reason to keep it posted.

So called "trolls" have as much right to post here as anyone. Some of them do bring up valid questions, and do present valid arguments. Some are just plain funny. Should we edit DieTEr? In the months that I have been here, I've only seen a hand-full of posts that I thought should be removed. Most were. As long as that trend continues, I have no problem with "limited censorship." <:)=

-- Sysman (, June 06, 1999.

Allthough well written, I'd have to disagree with your accessment Hardliner.

I can't help but think the condition of this forum is not the way that Yourdon intended. That, of course is just my opinion and it is based on what I have read from Yourdon. I would have to conclude that this forum was meant to be a place where people could come and discuss Y2K related subjects in a rational manner in order to help and inform those interested. Unfortunately, that doesn't seem to be the case. For those coming here to discuss Y2K topics or obtain help in preparations it is similar to looking for the proverbial needle in a haystack, escept instead of hay, it's garbage. One has to wade through MANY useless posts of people flaming one another, people spouting garbage, etc. in order to find something useful. I just can't imagine that was what Yourdon intended for this forum. Some individuals here seem to have become accustom or tolerant to the forum the way it is. If the majority of people here feel that that is the way the forum should be then so be it. As for me, I say that time is getting short and it's time to stop the nonsense and start getting serious. It's time to clean this forum up and get on target.

This forum is not owned by everyone. It belongs to an individual who has a right to do with it as he pleases. It amazes me that people have the audacity to use something that someone has loaned to them and then try to tell that person what they should do with it. This is not a public forum. It is a private forum available to the public.

The First Ammendment does not apply here. You/I/We do not have the right to say what we want, when we want, where we want. Sorry, it just doesn't work that way. We DO NOT have to deal with or tolerate things we find unfavorable and it does not make one side weaker nor stronger. We have the right not to be infringed upon. Sure, we may have to deal with it by getting rid of the problem, but I don't believe that's what you meant. Order has to be maintained or chaos will result and quite frankly, this forum is pretty chaotic. If someone wishes to have an "anything goes" forum then more power to them. Go start one. I don't believe that was the intention of this forum.

If one wants to believe that the polly's have accomplished some sort of goal because someone has decided that things have gotten out of hand and that some type of order is called for than so be it. I don't see it that way. Yeah, I read the post with the prediction from a polly stating that cencorship would be forth-coming. It means nothing. This forum is not/will not self destruct by gaining some type of order.

Allthough I do not agree with censorship, I don't disagree with it either. The line has to be drawn somewhere. It's a way of life...even in a free country.

On moderation: Yes, excluding the extreme is one difinition of moderate but it's not the only one. It also means "within limits:REASONABLE". Yes, someone will have to make that decision, it's their right to do so on this forum. I honestly don't think that anyone here has to feel threatened that their opinions of Y2K, no matter which extreme they tend to lean towards, will be censored, but the way they present it may be. Again, there's nothing wrong with maintaining some sort of order.

My feelings on editing posts: To "edit" one's post without making note of it is wrong. Plain and simple. Avoid editing if at all possible and just delete the post if it's not appropriate.

My feelings on the extremes: I posted this on another thread but it still applies.

********************************************************************** I'm curious, are you willing to be responsible for those you convince there is no need to prepare if it turns out that they should have? I can't say that anything major is going to happen next year, nor can I say that it won't. I honestly don't know. My main concern is a panic toward the end of this year. If I had to make a guess I would say that this is a concern of yours also. Maybe it's your intention to try to prevent such a thing from happening. If that be the case then the folks at this forum are not the ones to worry about. I may be wrong, but I don't think that the people who are preparing now have had any negative impact on anyone else's (people that don't feel the need to prepare) current standard of living. If anything they have improved some peoples. It will be the masses that "get it" all at once at the end of the year that will cause problems. You, nor anyone else, will have any control over them. The more people that prepare now, the less panic there will be then and after January 1st (should things get bad).

Of course I know that this nor anyone elses comments are going to persuade you to reconsider your motives but I would feel partially responsible if I didn't at least make my opinion known. Like I said, I don't know what's going to happen next year and if you were truely honest you would say the same. All we have now are opinions. None of which should justify trying to convince someone not to prepare (no matter what that might entail) for an uncertain future.

As far as trying to convince others to prepare.....I disagree with it also (possibly with the exception of family, loved ones, etc.). If I had to 'work' at convincing someone to prepare then I would not want to be responsible for talking this person into spending his/her hard earned money on preps that ultimately turned out to be unnecessary.

Talk to people, inform them, but let them decide which way to go. If they need help, they'll know where to go.


Personally, I'm preparing for the worst. I don't know how bad it's going to be, no one does, but I'm not going to try to force my opinions on someone else, especially with so many variables and so much at stake.

-- Ready & Waiting (, June 06, 1999.

That is a great example of what happens when power changes hands. Joe forum-poster gets left out in the cold. Yourdon meant this to be a public BB for the sole reason of discussing Y2K and become a public meeting place it has. Now someone else steps in and says no more crap I'm running the show. Well yeah, I guess it's time to pick and go to another forum, thanks for the pleasant eviction notice. But somehow I feel that the majority doesn't rule here. I thought that was what America is, rule my majority.

But it's clear that isn't true. The BB will go on being clipped and snipped to fit the opinions of a few men.

And in the outside world 1% of the population owns 99% of the wealth. And I can't helped but to be left out in the cold every time some higher up individuals decide to play dice with our country.

Well if any blame is due it has to fall squarley on Ed Yourdon. Thanks Ed, you sold them all out. You turned and ran, you abandoned your post. To the new SYSOPS... you suck. Have a nice time shaping the truth into something you can digest better.

-- (, June 06, 1999.

Sound of door slamming. Hits troll in keester.

-- Sayonara (Y2k@trolls.anon), June 06, 1999.

sayonara = Imperialist

-- (, June 06, 1999.

I can hardly believe the time and energy spent on this nonsense. Can't we just act like adults and respect one another by not flaiming or going after the messanger. Its all a waste of EVERYONE'S TIME. Its like little kids in the sandbox. Get real...if you have this much time and energy to waste, go waste it else where. But better yet, spend that time and energy on contributing something helpful. Obviously, you have all prepared and not having to spend any time at it. And you wonder why the Serbs and Kosovars can't get along??

Feeling really let down....Taz

-- Taz (Tassie, June 06, 1999.

CenSOR DieTEr???????

inFIDElS!!!!! tHE CUrSE Of tHE AGEs iS UPoN tHe LowLy sLImE, tHe "DELeteRS oF DIEtER's"(WIsdOM)!!!!!!

idiOT duNGBeeTLeS WHo ceNSor dIeteR WiLL havE THe God foRSAkEN curSE Of thE FIRsTBOrN Of twO SExeS!!!!! aND yOU SHaLL NamE It aS HERMie daFRo!!!!! HerMIe DafRO dytEE wILL It be Know aS HenCE foRTh!!!!!! bUNghOLe!!!!!!!

yeA i SAy unTO thEE!!!!!! a PolITICiaN InsT tO THy famIlY WiLL Be thY BUrdEN!!!!! aT THe leASTLyneSS!!!!! foUL SCumS!!!!!! idIOtS!!!!!!! beWARe!!!!!

daMNed Be tHEE aLL, THosE WHo delETe!!!!!! scROtUMs WiLL envELOpE THinE AiRPOckETs And stARve THinE AIr paSSagEWAys!!!!!!!

aRE wE MEn???????(And woMEn) OR aRE wE deVo???????

lIVE aND LEttINg OF tHE LIviNG sAYs dIEteR!!!!!!!

tuRN noT THis REpoSITOrY Of oPPosITIOns And deABAteORy INtO A cIRCLe jeRK Of maSTUrbaTErY!!!!!!!



-- Dieter (, June 06, 1999.

i agree with taz--- sometimes it seems like a contest of one upmanship between certain posters and who can write the more long- winded response back. we all (hopefully) left the sandbox years ago and learned that life doesn't have to be a constant battle of wit and will. it's like a bunch of kids, acting up cause daddy left the room! we don't need vulgarity to make a point( of couse , a few damns never hurt anybody). jeez, lets calm down and start sharing.

-- dory (, June 06, 1999.

Just trying to do a little detective work since Dieter decided to make an appearrance as it were . . . by the way, I've missed your posts.

Question for Dieter. I may be slow on the uptake here, but isn't Dieter a proper name in Swiss? Does anyone know what the name Dieter is when translated into English?

Now, having earlier figured out that Dieter is Uncle Deedah's alter ego, I'm wondering if the name Deedah and Dieter are one in the same -- some how.

-- David (, June 06, 1999.

I'm with Slimfast (aka dieter) on this one (BTW slimfast you're showing your age withthe Devo cracks ;) ).

And Gilda. and Patrick Henry. And Hardliner.

No censorship here please.

-- Andy (, June 06, 1999.

I fully support the Sysop on this one.

I prefer the company of ladies and gentlemen.

To anyone who cannot refrain from using gutter language I say, "Get lost creep."

-- GA Russell (, June 06, 1999.

Folks, WHOOEE! I go out for a weekend of fast cars, married women, and slow beer and what happens???

first, there are a pair of folks with the keys to the "Delete" button.

Second, there are about a dozen of us who are franticaly kicking around where the forum will end up. we have some idea, but not a real consensus on the actual ending configuration nor the transition path to it. We ARE close to consensus on both.

third EY DOES lurk here and HAS asked for certain thread deletions, which have been made.

Fourth, the person to whom the baton was passed chooses anonymity at this time. The heat in a few of the threads I have read so far would tend to render that decision as wise.

Please be patient with us. the transition has not been flawless. unfortunately, with a live, variable entity, and some folks who publicly espouse a wish to bring said entity to its knees, things are going to be a bit rough at first. Unfortunately, this didn't come with training wheels.

We have taken the option of discussions in relative private because, as I believe it was Mark Twain (often quoted by Ev Dirksen) who said: "Lovers of both sausage and The Law should not look too closely at the making of either." this quote obtains to our efforts here on the forum.

Give us some time, please.

And NO I DO NOT believe that patience are only for doctors.


-- Chuck, a night driver (, June 06, 1999.

cREEp?????? CReeP????? hOW DaRE yOU SIr??????? wHAT FOuL MoOd haS TAkeN YoU OF YoUR SENsES??????

cREeP Is mOST OffensIVE tO THe uTMosTLyESt!!!!!!!hOW DarE YoU, yES YoU SIr, sAY WORDS wiTH WhiCh i DO Not AGrEE!!!!!!! crEEp Is THe woRD, The woRd tHAt tHE VErY UTTERencE OF caN HaVE YoU BEHeaDED In soME LanDS!!!!!!! IDIoT!!!!! SHuT THiNe mouTH LESt yE BE LOsiNG OF yoUR NOggiNnESS!!!!!! DuLLArd!!!!!!

DIetER FIndS yOUr WOrdINgS OffENSIvE, yoU Are To shUSH NoW!!!!!

-- Dieter (, June 06, 1999.

I read in one post above -- and completely agree -- that "Yourdon meant this to be a public BB for the sole reason of discussing Y2K and become a public meeting place it has."

Maybe one of these folks all fired up about Patrick Henry, free speech, and the Bill of Rights will take the time to explain to everyone just how using scatological and vulgar phrases to characterize another person falls within the scope of "discussing Y2K."

BTW when Patrick Henry was alive many of the things that have been said on this forum would have resulted in the speaker's suffering bodily harm or death in retaliation.

-- Tom Carey (, June 07, 1999.


And so would many of the things that Patrick Henry said.

-- Unc D (, June 07, 1999.


Typically those things would have called for satisfaction on a Field of Honor. A concept that might not be a bad idea to reinstitute, or NOT.

"Ellington Protocol, Commander Harrington?"


-- Chuck, a night driver (, June 07, 1999.

"And so would many of the things that Patrick Henry said." -- Unc D

This in support of what, Unc? Or are you sitting this one out on the fence (as I often do)?

-- Tom Carey (, June 07, 1999.


I would answer your request for an explanation of how the free speech argument, "falls within the scope of 'discussing Y2K.' It does not.

If we liken our experience here to a road trip in an automobile, the "discussing Y2K" part would be about what route to take, where and how much gas to buy, what things would be like when we got there, whethere or not we'd get there at all, etc.

The free fpeech arguments would be the decisions as to whether or not we could do without the air filter, the oil filter, the gas filter, whether or not we could over or under inflate the tires, whether or not we could make the guy in the back seat shut up because we didn't want to hear (or perhaps simply didn't care) what he had to say about things and so forth.

Free speech arguments are about abuse; how much can or will be tolerated without destroying that which you started out to do and how much will it cost in moral, ethical and material terms to do so.

The point here is embodied in this question:

"Given the choice, whould you survive Y2K (whatever it may turn out to be) at the expense of our basic freedoms?"

-- Hardliner (, June 07, 1999.


In defense of idiots having the right to say idiotic things, and even smart folks having the right to say ugly things. Sticks and stones...

-- Unc D (, June 07, 1999.

Like so many things on this forum, the provocative tensions AND resolutions created by intense speech (in this case, about "censorship") demonstrate why the forum has been so valuable.

The questions seem to be whether it is necessary or productive for that speech to be entirely unrestrained (which, for good or ill does not comport with the typical American understanding of "free speech", which has some boundaries around it) AND whether the forum, without some modification, is/can fulfill its objective.

This latter is where it gets even more tricky than the former.

What is its "objective"? Absent Ed, it is in the eye of the beholder, not necessarily a bad perspective, BTW. The "About" statement can be parsed in multiple directions.

It isn't telling tales out of court, I think, to say that the appointed sysop(s), in the INTEREST of building some consensus, asked for brainstorming help. Moreover, the delay in making any serious, permanent changes speaks well, IMO, for their reluctance to jump in dictating what "must be". Not surprisingly, many of the arguments and comments made on these various censorship threads have/were been made by the brainstormers ...

... but not all. Which again, coming back to the beginning of my response, is why the forum's own brainstorming on this is equally critical and I know (intuitively, not from "secret" conversations) is being listened to with great care by the sysops.

So maybe the system, such as it is, is still working in the main.

As I said on another thread, I am not the sysop(s). I have mixed feelings about certain aspects of the sysop process, including the formation of a group-within-a-group, but felt it was only honorable to lend some help once asked, as did Chuck and a few others, and to be accountable for that. But don't be so certain that the appointed sysop is "censorship" or "deletion" prone themselves.

Hardliner alluded to some of the chat sessions that are starting up. These may indeed parallel to some degree Arnie Rimmer's approach. The sessions will be, by design and without apology, more protected spaces than the forum. At the same time, I expect and look for very intense speech to be exercised. We'll see. It's an experiment. It's not the forum. Its effects on the forum itself, given that so many want to participate, is indeed unknown and I will try to be sensitive to that.

-- BigDog (, June 08, 1999.

to the top for newbies. Read and learn.

-- Super Polly (, June 14, 1999.

So now we have the Biffies and Bunkies sending these stupid threads up to the top "for the newbies." But of course they have nothing but the welfare of the forum at heart. Why don't you assholes go back to your little hog-wallow and leave us the fuck alone?

SYSOPS: This kind of deliberately disruptive behavior by these shit fer brains hooligans is much worse than a little heartfelt profanity or a few off-topic threads.

-- Hallyx (, June 14, 1999.

Newbies read this.

-- UpHigh (Back, June 14, 1999.

once more

-- (, June 16, 1999.

and again for newbies. beware the gestapo

-- B-ware (b-w@re.of moderators), June 21, 1999.

Yeah, they're such Gestapo, they deleted this whole thread, didn't they? Hell, I wish they would.

-- Trolls (are@anal.retentive), June 21, 1999.


-- request (via@e.mail), November 08, 1999.

Many of the above posts refer to the First Amendment, the American Constitution, and other references to American concepts/laws regarding free speech.

So is this forum constructed by Americans, for Americans and under the auspices of American law? Does it, then, by definition, exclude all except Americans, unless they 'agree' to abide by American rules? Genuine question.

-- Asking (, November 08, 1999.


Brits are tolerated however.

-- Andy (, November 08, 1999.

Didn't someone say on another thread that Asking is actually cpr (Charles P. Reuben), holder of the most frequent-poster miles on the Debunking Y2K board?



-- No (, November 08, 1999.

I'm glad someone brought this thread back, as I was away last June and missed it. There's nothing for me to add in terms of opinion as everything seems to have been said already, (and by now the sysops I'm sure have a good understanding and working routine among themselves) except perhaps a reminder that even though this is a forum hosted by an American institution, it is still publicly accessed by people all over the world, with all kinds of ideas as to what freedom of speech represents.

With that thought in mind, I'd like to relate this incident I read, whether it really happened is anyone's guess.

When Charles deGaulle decided to retire from public life, the Israeli ambassador and his wife threw a gala dinner party in his honor.

At the dinner table the Ambassador's wife was talking with Madame deGaulle in English...

"Your husband has been such a prominent public figure, such a presence on the French and International scene for so many years! How quiet retirement will seem in comparison. What are you most looking forward to in these retirement years?"

"A penis," replied Madame deGaulle.

A huge hush fell over the table. Everyone heard her answer... and no one knew what to say next.

Le Grand Charles leaned over to his wife and said, "Ma cherie, I believe in ze English zat word iz pronounced, 'appiness!'

-- Chris (#$%^&, November 08, 1999.

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