Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Blog postings/comments

Can I please remind everyone that whilst healthy debate and discussion about birding and environmental subjects is encouraged and welcomed on here resorting to insults or comments that could be regarded as offensive certainly isn't. The Blog is often the first point of contact for birders in our area looking to share their interest and records with others and we are anxious that they are not put off becoming involved by what they may read on here. Equally as this blog is "open" it may also be accessed by organisations, potential funders etc to get a feel for what we are about. There have been several major steps forward locally in the creation of habitat, initiatives targeting specific species (eg Twite), nest box projects etc none of which would have been possible without outside funding. It is imperative that the blog gives the right impression of our group. I'm certainly not suggesting that people are prevented from airing their views (quite the contrary, this is welcomed) but please try and keep it civil!

I would be interested to know what other people think.


David Sutcliffe said...

Totally agree - important to keep it factual and informative. Also discretion, especially about breeding or sensitive species/sites.

Nick Carter said...

"I would be interested to know what other people think"

Considering all the complaints I have listened to about innapropriate postings I am surprised no-one wants to comment, sometimes I wonder why I bother!

Bruce said...

Hi Nick.
As you are a moderator I would consider deleting unhelpful comments. They can give a bad impression. We are not school children anymore (with the exception possibly of Dishfish) lets behave like adults.

Matt Bell said...

My personal view is that we should be grown up enough to not need moderating. As Nick says, by all means express an opinion, and debate issues relevant to conservation, but do so in a way that will not offend. Surely that's realistically achievable isn't it? Many other individuals blogs express personal, provocative and 'controversial' thoughts, and of course that's fine, amusing and the right place for it. When it's a group blog, a little more tact is required.

Goldon Gordon said...

Its bound to happen that occasionally tempers flare over issues that cause disagreement amongst users of the forum. I personally never object to people having strong opposing views on issues. Its good and healthy that issues raised can be discussed and even heated exchanges take place, as this shows that people are THINKING about the issues not blindly accepting or muttering in corner to themselves. I have always found in such cases that views on both side can be changed when good healthy debate happens. I even accept that occasionally the bounds of propriety will be over-stepped. But what is not acceptable in a public forum is personal abuse of those who you disagree with. As other have mentioned what's acceptable in a private discussion is not acceptable when other people can view the comments. This is not some form of censorship is simply a matter of courtesy and perhaps even more importantly showing non members that we can behave in a rational manner even when we disagree strongly. No one is ever convinced of anything by those who simply shout loudest.

I realise that this discussion is in some part at least related to the Tawny Owl thread where Darrel and I in particular disagreed over what I had said. I do hope no one thinks I have fallen out with anyone over this. Darrel is perfectly entitled to voice his objections to my point of view and perhaps is did get somewhat heated but we are all grown ups and should be able to forgive and forget on both sides. I certainly bear no ill will towards Darrel and I hope he feels the same way. I have had to think carefully about what Darrel said and it has in all honesty made be think I should think more deeply about the controlled killing (I hate the disingenuousness of the word culling) of animals that are simply in the wrong place at the wrong time by the very species that put them there !

Nick Carter said...

Thanks to everyone for your comments, it wasn't just the Darrel/Paul incident that prompted my post but other previous responses to people's sightings. Unfortunately I know of one or two observers who have said they are not prepared to post on here if they are likely to get insulted or have their sightings ridiculed, hopefully this will change.

BSUMNER said...

We,re a bird watching group so lets keep the blog strictly to the birds,i.e. bird sightings, reports ,locations and photos. That way we shouldnt be able to wind each other up.

darrell j prest said...

i'll get my coat.
door shuts and tumbleweed rolls down the street.
people always get my name wrong its
darrell 2 l's

Alastair said...

Darn, missed a chance to wind Darrell up ....

I thought the Tawny Owl thread was quite good and pretty civilised (now I've looked at it, saw the original post missed the subsequent dust up). The only "insults" were at least partly the product of internet communication - a bit of misunderstanding of the other person's point.

Whilst I know I'm "an outsider" these days I'm very much in favour of a bit of this and that on the blog and disagree with Brian's view that it should purely be a reporting forum.

However, as it is the public face of Halifax Birders (and friends) extreme flaming and excessive verbal combat (and bad swearing, Darrell) should generally be frowned upon. Perhaps this should be deleted by the moderators if such behaviour would "put off" those who would prefer not to read public falling outs and general squabbling. Rather enjoy it myself but there you go .... (I still owe the Fatbirder a pint).