Radical idea: take the Christian Depression Pages message boards offline for a few months. I'm tired of problem users, people telling lies about the admin, people spreading false rumours, people who assume any correction is a power trip, or a vendetta, people who post everywhere and won't shut up, false accusations, rumours, lies and more lies. Enough.
The people who paint us four admin as evil, heartless tyrants seem to have missed the fact that we are real people with feelings, and that we actually do care about people with clinical depression. If we really were what they say, we wouldn't have pushed so hard to get the site onto Gospelcom, wouldn't have put in however many months work on the site, wouldn't have written it specifically to help them, wouldn't have paid for the domain name, wouldn't have taken their crap for this long.
On Soncrest BBS, the worst users were all Christians. The Wiccan priestess never gave anyone any trouble, she was open about what she believed and didn't hurt anybody. The worst users, the ones who were lying, the ones on vendettas, the ones who turned everything into a religious guilt trip, the ones who insulted you to your face, the ones who tore down everything you'd worked on, the ones who lied about you to others, the hypocrites who demanded one rule for them and another for everyone else, the ones who made your life hell, they were all Christians. The ones who tore the community apart and blamed everyone but themselves, they were all Christians. It seems we Christians are very poor at accepting correction, worse still at basic stuff like honesty, and quite happy to gossip behind your back. No wonder people have such a low opinion of us.
The more I think about it, the more I want to take the message boards down and get some rest. It's emotionally wearing, physically time consuming, and a pretty thankless task. I need a break. We all need a break. We don't need this kind of crap thrown at us for trying to do something we believe will help people who need it. I don't understand why the users can't see why we set the site up in the first place, why we put the message boards there for them to use, why we put in so much time and effort, and why I have had enough of being kicked in the teeth for it.
The fight we got dragged into on the message boards in December was horrible. I couldn't sleep. We were publicly accused by all and sundry for daring to suggest that no one person should produce 40% of the posts. Heaven forbid that we care enough about the message board community to recognise a problem and try to address it. How dare we actually do our jobs as moderators? How could we be so cruel and uncaring as to try and give everyone an equal chance to talk? Yeah, we're really nasty pieces of work, us admin.
It's not like we have no idea how to run an online community. We've seen it all go horribly wrong and tried to avoid that. I think we need some serious rules, a user agreement that says "No, I will not behave like a spoilt little brat, I will not monopolise the boards, I will behave with courtesy at all times, I won't spread lies and rumours, and I won't assume the moderators are evil horned beasts just because they have a job to do."