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Personal vitriol unnecessary


Jeremy Loome

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Hi all,

Just thought I'd note that one of the reasons I used to post frequently here and no longer do is the personal nature of the debates. Why do people here feel the need -- as they do on other b boards, i"ll admit -- to call anyone they don't agree with an idiot, a flamer, a fool, biased etc.?

Why is it that a group of adults with so much passion, so much knowledge and so much to obviously contribute to the development of our favourite sport can't do so civily? Today, I logged on and read a thread on DeRo. It was interesting and I posted.

I then made the mistake of checking a thread on the national team makeup; it's one example of intolerant behaviour, with every idea or position being ridiculed by someone who doesn't agree with it.

As a long-time member of the media, I suspect -- I'm not saying this is definitively the case, but I suspect -- that one of the reasons sports departments at major newspapers don't take the Voyageurs seriously as a fan lobby base is that they read these boards occasionally.

You can disagree with someone, or even with an institutional direction without personal invectives. There are conciliatory ways of writing posts that would make these forums far less intimidating or frustrating for those of us who would like to be involved, but don't want to get involved in ongoing disputes, trolls and flames.

Thanks,

Jeremy Loome

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Hey Jeremy,

Many of us share your concern and wish we could rid the board of such conduct. I do, however, hope that you (and others) will not label "the Voyageurs" according to the wayward few. Beneath some annoying gibberish, lies a wonderful community of Canadians, dedicated to the support or soccer.

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Go back to your cave, troll.;) (I kid, I kid!)

This board is actually fairly tolerable these days. If you're looking for intelligent debate, you can actually find it here. The only problem are the few loose cannons that feel the need to bring up the same point over and over again. It becomes tiresome constantly repeating the same rebuttal for these people which is probably why people revert to "troll" - it's only one word you have to type.

As for the media, if you're at all familiar with any BBoards you know that every one of them has these types of people. I'd be surprised if media types put much stock into this. However, I don't support banning people as sometimes they come out with good points.

It rarely has anything to do with agreeing or disagreeing with what is said, more to do with constantly being forced to respond to the same point again and again and again...

Things are, for the most part, fairly civil here (good job mods!). If someone gets personal, they usually get called on it and some sort of apology appears. I'm pretty happy with how things are here.

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Agree with El Hombre.

Things were much worse a few months ago, before and during the WC, this board was insane. From my experience it takes one or two individual to make a board looks bad and I think these days it's quite enjoyable but sometime I would like to see more civility in the way certain poster respond to others, specially the new ones.

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quote:Originally posted by Jeremy Loome

As a long-time member of the media, I suspect -- I'm not saying this is definitively the case, but I suspect -- that one of the reasons sports departments at major newspapers don't take the Voyageurs seriously as a fan lobby base is that they read these boards occasionally.

Please don't take this the wrong way (as simple text posts can be), but if that were a factor, the Leafs would have lost their support ages ago. Have you tried reading their section at Sportsnet? It hurts the brain, and lowers the IQ.

/flame on!

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Guest Jeffery S.

Jeremy, your sermon is about four months late. I suspect you have not been at all paying attention to us lately. We are a fine bunch lately, a bit in limbo, a bit bored, but quite the troop. Pretty well since the World Cup we have not been beserk, and before that having assimilated the whole FC Toronto thing helped a bit too.

You also seem to be yearning to come back and perhaps are worried that we won't like you, or something. Should we promise to be nice to you? I will. If I haven't broken that promise already.

And you totally miss the point of a fan forum. You have your pulpit and can use it, so you are always venting in professional fashion as a journalist, but most of us do not have that outlet. Why the hell not use this board for it? After all, unlike you, most of us have other ways to make money apart from being dedicated exclusively to sport, hell, I would be embarrassed to be a sport professional. Having to take all those silly game seriously, c'mon! Talking nicely about soccer, why in god's name should we? What, tell me, is the possible benefit of using sport chat as a litmus test for social harmony? That is pure dumb, let me be a moron and a knee-jerk and hysterical about Barça and Canada and absolutely love doing so; I have better things to be serious about.

You don't?

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I share your concern with you on this topic Jeremy. As a long time poster, I tend to use this board as my main news headquarters for Canadian Soccer. I'm interested in what other people have to say, but I tend to read much more than I post.

The reason for this is I find that the internet is just too faceless for me to have a meaningful debate or conversation with people I have not met in person. I think we'd all rather grab a pint together and sit and chat about the pros and cons of Canadian soccer, but unfortunately we're spread out coast to coast. I'm happy to say that the Voyageurs I have met in Victoria, Vancouver, Seattle, and Edmonton are great people with a passion for the game. For me it puts things into a different perspective when I am reading their posts on this board.

I could see for new people, this board would be pretty intimidating to post to. I try to respect everyone's opinion, but sometimes since i'm not sitting face to face with them, I forget how impersonal this box can be at times. I think that is a product of the internet, and not a reflection of the people using it.

Reza, the guy that started this thing had a vision of Canadian soccerfans united and more organized. Before I stumbled upon this group in 2000, the only other Canadian soccer fan I knew was my dad. I was so disgusted being outcheered at Swangard stadium at home against the Americans in 1997. It's great now that at home games there is more cohesion and section full of die-hard Canadian fans. This in large part is due to this message board. Still though, our numbers are not overwhelming and we should be actively inviting new fans into the fold.

Anyways my main point is that I have often thought that new people are intimidated and scared away by some of the posts on this board. Maybe a sticky or section for new people is in order. I'd hate for us to leave anyone behind because they're too intimidated to speak their mind and say hello.

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Yes, it gets personal and yes there is vitriol.

But the media shouldn't be using it for anything else than updated and precise tracking of Canadian soccer and players, as well as the general mood of Canadian supporters (ie when someone gets fired/hired, when players move or play for another country, etc.).

Any in-depth discussion invariably crashes, it's in the nature of message boards.

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1). Wrong place for this topic (but I can't see too much harm it letting it linger here a bit). If it helps to forward a discussion as it what people want and expect from this board then all the better.

2). Jeremy, you may have bad timing. From my experience things haven't been too loopy overall of late, but the last couple of days more than a few warnings have gone out for pissy behaviour. Why the last couple of days? Don't know. Is there a full moon out?

3). Harasment, thread jacking, and "adult only" language/content are the only reasons I get involved in a discussion as a moderator. Yeah, some of the posters on here have issues with each other and are certainly short and probably hostile towards each other no matter what. But it's hard to judge sometimes when some of that hostility crosses the line and becomes harasment. But for the most part I'm hands off until it seems to be ratcheting up, not before.

4). We've got 2 moderators right now, myself and Sigma. That's it. We check in when we can but it's not always possible to police all topics all the time, in real time. Anyone who's been on this forum any amount of time must know that if it's gotten to the point where I'm a moderator things around here maybe aren't going as well as would be hoped.

5). All this being said, I think there are actually a few new posters, some of them long time lurkers for the most part, who've entered our little cyberspace pub to chit-chat, have a drinky-poo and a shout (at the TV or one another). Good with the bad I guess, Jeremy. Honestly though, I can think of a half dozen regular posters who've moved on that I wish we still had here.

Just a few little moderator thoughts.

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quote:Originally posted by Jeffrey S.

Jeremy, your sermon is about four months late. I suspect you have not been at all paying attention to us lately. We are a fine bunch lately, a bit in limbo, a bit bored, but quite the troop. Pretty well since the World Cup we have not been beserk, and before that having assimilated the whole FC Toronto thing helped a bit too.

You also seem to be yearning to come back and perhaps are worried that we won't like you, or something. Should we promise to be nice to you? I will. If I haven't broken that promise already.

And you totally miss the point of a fan forum. You have your pulpit and can use it, so you are always venting in professional fashion as a journalist, but most of us do not have that outlet. Why the hell not use this board for it? After all, unlike you, most of us have other ways to make money apart from being dedicated exclusively to sport, hell, I would be embarrassed to be a sport professional. Having to take all those silly game seriously, c'mon! Talking nicely about soccer, why in god's name should we? What, tell me, is the possible benefit of using sport chat as a litmus test for social harmony? That is pure dumb, let me be a moron and a knee-jerk and hysterical about Barça and Canada and absolutely love doing so; I have better things to be serious about.

You don't?

Generally agreed.

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The discussions here do tend to degenerate into personal feuds. Not all discussions, but some.

And Jeremy's point is that when media guys read our more lively debates and see the dumb posts, all of us are clumped together as nuts.

It doesn't mean we have to change our way of being or hide our passion, thoughts and opinions, but on my end, I will try to tone down any personal remarks.

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Guest Jeffery S.
quote:Originally posted by River City

The discussions here do tend to degenerate into personal feuds. Not all discussions, but some.

And Jeremy's point is that when media guys read our more lively debates and see the dumb posts, all of us are clumped together as nuts.

It doesn't mean we have to change our way of being or hide our passion, thoughts and opinions, but on my end, I will try to tone down any personal remarks.

If the media want to judge us by what we post, that is fine, including pegging us as nuts. We do the same -judge- with the media, which is generally grade school when it comes to soccer in Canada.

How then might we help the media? Be nicer to each other.

Why doesn't the media ask itself how it can help us the fans (and their readers)? Which they don't by patronizing, by terrible fact checking, by treating Canadian soccer fans as dumb, by parochial story lines? Jeremy? Anyone?

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In regards to the media checking out this board, the sad state of soccer coverage in this country (Neil Davidson excepted) is that it is the fans that are informing the media about what is going on rather than vice versa. The forum should not be trying to change itself to accomodate the media, CSA, TFC, the Impact, individual soccer players etc. This will only lead to censorship and the board becoming bland and less useful. If we do become an official organization, the executive must have a certain standard of behaviour in order to be taken seriously but the forum should still be free to function as it wants to. Obviously when we show up as a fan group there has to be a standard of behaviour, ie, no hooliganism or lewd drunken behaviour, but the forum should be run solely for our own use and with our own standards. The only thing I would like to see is the mods be tougher on constantly repetitive posters like G-Man or Wildboy. I have no problem with them posting their opinions but don't want to read the same opinion 100 times especially when it is often accompanied with personal insults (I think we are all big boys and girls here and can take the odd insult but repetitive insults like repetitive posts reduce the effectiveness of the forum). They should get a warning and then be banned quickly if they don't comply. Freedom of expression should be allowed on the forum even if it sometime gets personal, constant repetition of the same post should not be allowed.

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In regards to the media checking out this board, the sad state of soccer coverage in this country (Neil Davidson excepted) is that it is the fans that are informing the media about what is going on rather than vice versa. The forum should not be trying to change itself to accomodate the media, CSA, TFC, the Impact, individual soccer players etc. This will only lead to censorship and the board becoming bland and less useful. If we do become an official organization, the executive must have a certain standard of behaviour in order to be taken seriously but the forum should still be free to function as it wants to. Obviously when we show up as a fan group there has to be a standard of behaviour, ie, no hooliganism or lewd drunken behaviour, but the forum should be run solely for our own use and with our own standards. The only thing I would like to see is the mods be tougher on constantly repetitive posters like G-Man or Wildboy. I have no problem with them posting their opinions but don't want to read the same opinion 100 times especially when it is often accompanied with personal insults (I think we are all big boys and girls here and can take the odd insult but repetitive insults like repetitive posts reduce the effectiveness of the forum). They should get a warning and then be banned quickly if they don't comply. Freedom of expression should be allowed on the forum even if it sometime gets personal, constant repetition of the same post should not be allowed.

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This forum has too much venom? I take it you guys have stopped by Big Soccer or any of the English club supporters boards. Notice a difference? Are they any more polite? This board doesn't even allow swearing or any avatars let alone obscene ones .That bit about the media not taking posters on this board seriously because some people are bickering is funny. If Soccer becomes something to talk about in Canada they won't have a choice but read this forum will they? This is where ALL the information is, and thanks to the guys who put it here.

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quote:Originally posted by Daniel

Does that mean a moratorium on "Yallop was the worst coach ever" posts? ;)

Sure as long as there is a similar moratorium on "Yallop was a great coach who left because the CSA was too incompetent to provide him with conditions in which he could succeed" posts. I do, however, think as he was the last coach he is a topic that will come up pretty often and I certainly won't hesitate from commenting if he does come up. Hart in my opinion is actually a worse coach than Yallop although his selections and player relations have been better. Yallop may have learned to be a good national team coach in time had he not bolted. If we finally hire someone good with credentials and experience Yallop will ceases to be an issue.

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quote:Originally posted by Jeffrey S.

If the media want to judge us by what we post, that is fine, including pegging us as nuts. We do the same -judge- with the media, which is generally grade school when it comes to soccer in Canada.

How then might we help the media? Be nicer to each other.

Why doesn't the media ask itself how it can help us the fans (and their readers)? Which they don't by patronizing, by terrible fact checking, by treating Canadian soccer fans as dumb, by parochial story lines? Jeremy? Anyone?

here here...go be patronizing somewhere else, Loome..Geez, these guys should be thanking us on a regular basis for trying to kepp the flame alive for soccer in Canada IMHO.

And for another thing, do you think that if the dozens of us who post on a daily-weekly basis all got together in a sports bar over beers and the same topics, that it would be a church barbeque, an orderly affair without at least a little name-calling or some put-downs of ideas, some people baiting others, etc...c'mon we all know that what happens on here is the same thing that happens on a regular basis in any place where grown-up men get together to relax and hang-out, on-line or off. And that most people don't really mind it (just not taken to the extreme).

Leave us to our fun.

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