This topic is where the moderators will share news and information with the community.
For the past several months, the moderators have been dealing with a group of people on the website who determined to take the site over and make it their own. Several of these guys were extremely active in communicating with unsuspecting members of the community, who did not realize they were being used for a greater agenda. This post is to set the record straight (particularly for those members contacted) and provide an overview of what happened.
Folks, we just want to remind you that having multiple accounts for the same person on this site is not allowed - unless you are a moderator and have a personal account separate from your moderator account.
We have found that someone who was set to moderation due to their role in the "gang" that was going on at the end of last year is sharing an IP address with another user on the site who has been active recently. We were alerted because the second user suddenly started giving shout outs to all the members who got kicked off the site.
I don't like to assume that everyone sharing the same IP address is the same person. After all, there are such things as family members and roommates, and just because a husband may be a jerk, that doesn't mean we need to necessarily penalize his wife who wants to participate here. People also move and get their IP addresses changed.
That said, if we have reason to suspect that someone is using a second account to bypass moderation, then we're going to do one of two things: 1) The second account will be set to moderated (at minimum) and 2) We'll shut down both accounts and ban the IP address entirely.
This is not personal to the person with the second account - assuming they've been behaving. We simply don't want people coming on here under multiple identities for the purposes of manipulating the community.
Thanks for your support and understanding in this matter.
There was a bit of a dust-up in the past few days in relation to some comments that people find offensive on Main Street. It's related to similar dust-ups and debates over what is appropriate and non-appropriate on the main threads here on the blog.
One of the members posted something that was considered offensive by some folks due to its anti-Zionist theme, and a moderator unpublished it. Part of the reason for this is that people have come here in the past with an agenda and have tried to hijack the main forum to push their pet conspiracy theory. However, I am concerned we may veering too far on the side of censorship and therefore here's how I'd like to approach this:
1) I've instructed the moderators to encourage people to post in the forums as a FIRST result, and to even move posts manually if they have to.
2) You as the site member should ALSO use the forums for off-topic, off-color, or potentially offensive material that is not appropriate for Main Street. This includes:
* Controversial conspiracy theories
* Blatant partisan political demagoguery
* ANYTHING related to Israel
* Humor unrelated to the topics being discussed, i.e., Lolcats
* Music videos and fluff unrelated to the issues at hand
* Anything else that's not relating to the blog topic at hand that really should be placed in the forums.
3) Some folks who have a hard time "grasping" this rule will be put on a lesser form of moderated status where they can post in the forums without prior approval but do not have unfettered access to Main Street blog comments.
To provide an example of this, I have taken Dagney Taggart's moderated post on Israel and created a thread for it so people can hash it out there:
One more thing: People have been complaining to some of the moderators about the nasty tone infecting Main Street again. C'mon folks, you can all agree to disagree without being assholes about it.
Now. Let's all be adults. We don't want to have to run this place like a kindergarten. I EXPECT ALL OF YOU TO SELF-MODERATE AND START TOPICS IN THE FORUMS AS NEEDED. I am even OK with you linking to your new topic here, as long as you do it tastefully and not as constant self-promotion. The more you self-moderate, the less we'll be inclined to take your PM privileges away.