Small Woodland Owners' Group

Somebody has to ask

Topics that don't easily fit anywhere else!

Re: Somebody has to ask

Postby Dexter's Shed » Sat May 16, 2015 12:03 am

I'd be up for that, how about the other's ????
Dexter's Shed
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Re: Somebody has to ask

Postby Rankinswood » Sat May 16, 2015 6:15 am

I used to check in to this forum every day in the hope that I might learn something about which I was previously unaware.

Of late the level of daily discussion has reduced and so I find myself checking in at much wider intervals.

A clue to the role of a moderator lies in the name i.e. moderation and not censorship.

Forum lurkers are fine.

Lessons have been learned from the recent sorry state of affairs by all concerned and so its time to draw a line and move on.

Without forgiveness there is no future.

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Re: Somebody has to ask

Postby Dave and Verity » Sat May 16, 2015 6:35 am

Good post Boxerman, think you've hit the nail on the head.

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Re: Somebody has to ask

Postby oldclaypaws » Sat May 16, 2015 2:20 pm

Once when I was informed by Rich that I had inadvertently offended with a 'John Cleese' bit of stereotypical humour, I was very happy to offer an unreserved apology for any unintentional offence. I only ever aim to inform and occasionally mildly amuse, I do not ever intend to cause others distress, although I will always stand up for principles and victims of unfair treatment, in any sphere of life. Up to a point, Dexter and myself were trying quite hard to tone it down, but it would be wrong for every mildly bit of inoffensive banter to be leapt on with a threatened ban, as was tending to happen- that was excessive, as is generally agreed.

We have been at this point before. During the previous 'debate' I pointed out my positive contributions and invited an apology from the party who was widely seen as causing the ill feeling to clear the air. Unfortunately my post was immediately deleted, which just added to the ill feeling and I've not posted in usual discussions since. Had we been in North Korea I fancy I'd have been summarily shot by anti-aircraft battery for dissent. (That's mildly sartorial black humour, no offence intended to any Koreans on the forum).

Phil's (sorry Boxermans) proposal is about the best way to draw a line so this forum has some sort of amicable future. I'm more than happy to apologise for any rebellious grief caused to the mods and could try in the future to be on-thread, less daft and less of an anarchist. South Africa's truth and reconciliation process showed all can forgive and move forward.

So, after unreserved apologies from me and Dexter, we wait to hear from the other party involved. Are they prepared to lay off the 'delete' button and try to be more tolerant of forum users, and apologise for what others saw as rather authoritarian behaviour ? I'd respectfully suggest if that is not the case and they think that is beneath them, then perhaps the best thing they could do is to stand down and then others might be invited to take up the reins in the vacant position. - Phil or Smojo seem good at trying to smooth the waters.
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Re: Somebody has to ask

Postby boxerman » Sat May 16, 2015 2:29 pm

Thanks for that, Paws. Dexter has agreed to go this route but that's still to come presumably because he was waiting for agreement from all. So, Dex - bite the bullet and make that public apology now and it's then clear that both of you have acted in good faith and then the fate of this place rests, simply in the good grace of one other and I'm sure all will be watching with bated breath for the results.
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Re: Somebody has to ask

Postby Jackdaw » Sat May 16, 2015 6:47 pm

Only my opinion, but my activity on here diminished somewhat due to the idle chitchat that was being posted. I just felt it was turning into facebook, or as I call it mutterbook.
I know nothing of why or who has been banned, or care even less, but It would appear that those who have been excluded seem desperate to come back. Must admit, most of the mutter brigade seem to be the ones looking to return.
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Re: Somebody has to ask

Postby adam » Sat May 16, 2015 9:40 pm

It is so very sad to read this thread and the ongoing politics of the forum. Such a shame that we cannot all (users and moderators) apply Postel's Law and move on - be conservative in what you do, be liberal in what you accept from others.

I don't post much but have still got a lot out of this forum and value it. Most recently I've benefitted from the expertise of paws and value his contributions a lot. Sure one or two (literally) posts have surprised me and I could see how they could be controversial but I suspect that some may be too eager to be offended often on behalf of others.

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Re: Somebody has to ask

Postby smojo » Sun May 17, 2015 7:56 am

Sounds good to me guys. Would like to see this place vibrant and lively and talking about woods instead of sniping at each other. Come on guys kiss and make up. Well you don't need to kiss if you don't want. ;)
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Re: Somebody has to ask

Postby Rich » Sun May 17, 2015 10:17 am

Well I must be getting old, as I was just about to write a response, but I realise I’ve said what I was about to say before in the ‘forum or facebook’ thread back in March. If for one moment we can lay aside the obvious personality clashes, I’ll take a deep breath and explain a bit about this board, how it came about and why it is here.

It’s no secret that sponsor SWOG. They pay a retainer for two staff who maintain the website, this forum, produce a newsletter and attend 2 or 3 shows a year. Originally, they helped set up SWOG as a kind of aftersales service to purchasers who weren’t quite sure what do to with their woods. Gradually we’ve grown to embrace everyone with a love of woodlands, not just owners, but craftsmen and women, conservationist, naturalists and people with just a love of the outdoors and woodlands in particular.

They do not do this as an exercise in harvesting the email addresses of potential purchasers. In fact they do not have any editorial say or lean on us in any way just as long as our work is in keeping with our ‘mission statement’:

“ to aid the enjoyment, diversity and conservation of British woodland”

We do this by ‘sharing our knowledge and experience with others’.

Because of this sponsorship, and the fact that we have been able to keep our running costs to a minimum, membership is free and as far as I know, it always will be. However, we have had to rely on volunteers to help us. People who have given up their time to walk us around their woods, or come to one of the shows and help set up or present something they have been doing.

More recently we’ve had a group of moderators who have given up their time to help manage the increasingly busy forum. I haven’t been able to do this on my own. I can’t be on the internet 27/7, I’d much rather be out in the woods, so I have been grateful of help from the volunteer moderators. This is a very difficult and thankless task, and I’ve lost couple of really keen moderators who could no longer take the stress and abuse.

For many years, this was unnecessary, things just bumbled along without any need for moderation, people joined, used the service and went, great....job done! Sometimes people stayed on for a while and answered questions from the numerous new members as they came along....even better! Don’t worry I’m not going to get all dewy eyed about the old days :roll:

Well human beings are human beings, I understand that we all like to be ‘liked’, we all have egos and want to be popular, isn’t that why facebook is a billion dollar industry? So although personally I don’t like to use it, it’s a great outlet for people that do and don’t want to be ‘lightly restrained’ by what I feel are very reasonable guidelines.

Now if anyone wants to bring back in the personality clashes and continue arguing about who insulted who and who owes who an apology, let me know and I’ll open up a closed forum and we can carry on discussing it till our hazel coppice is overstood. Those that want to post and ‘share their knowledge and experience’ here then please do. Those that want to share that knowledge and experience over on facebook or any other medium then great, but I agree with the sentiments of the last couple of posts, let’s just get on with it.
Richard Hare
SWOG website editor

[email protected]
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Re: Somebody has to ask

Postby jennysmate » Sun May 17, 2015 12:16 pm

Everyone seems to have had their tuppence worth here, except the person who caused it.
Where are you Simon?
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