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April 16, 2005 at 10:31 pm #830SciencetechKeymaster
The purpose of this posting is to solicit your feedback and input about IceBoard and reach a decision about it’s direction.
First, some background. IceBoard was born in September of 2004 as an experiment, following the ravages and eventual closure of Robert Holmes’ discussion board on theice.org due to pornographic spam postings. This board uses freely available software provided by the phpBB group, and has been 100% spam-free since inception. To address a recent question, Who pays for this site?, the answer is that I do out of my own pocket. The cost is insignificant, and I do it because I enjoy talking about all things related to Antarctica. It also seems to fill a hole on the World Wide Web, that being a non-commercial, dedicated board for Antarctic discussions.
Since then I have tried to expand the visibility of the web site and number of users, but these things take time. I personally would like to see about 10x the number of active users here, but it’s hard to get to the top of the Googling heap. Be that as it may, I am pleased by the rate of expansion and think it’s worth continuing.
However, I find myself at a crossroads sooner than expected and I would like your input — you are the users, after all, and without you IceBoard would have no point. So here goes…
To cut to the chase, the board is taking up too much of my time. (Those of you who know what I do may also know that my work can be very consuming.) Additionally, some recent invective threads have begged for moderation. But I personally don’t like editing other people’s words, no matter how vitriolic, and it angers the users too. So here are my questions; if you would be so kind, please take a moment and post a reply to the following:
1. IceBoard is currently a moderated board. Unmoderated, discussions would go unchecked and unedited, but users would be free to post whatever they please, be it fact or flame. Do you think it would be acceptable to not moderate it?
2. Currently, users are required to register. This requirement can be disabled, enhancing anonymity, although that may leave the board open to spamming. Should registration continue to be required?
The goal is to provide a forum for discourse about Antarctica. I’d like to be able to contribute frequently, but also walk away from it for weeks at a time and know that things will be okay. It would take but one or two mouse clicks to call the whole thing off and say enough, but I’d rather not do that. Any suggestions or help would be appreciated.
KPApril 17, 2005 at 7:02 pm #8104
First, I’d like to thank you, KP, for having this board. It is a great community for civilized disscussion and general socializing. In regards to the questions……
1. In my experience(I’m co-admin at another website), moderation is a necessary evil. Regardless of the membership size, or nature of the board, there are going to be flame wars, spam, negativity, and idiotic posts.
2. Yes. Registration is necessary for the reasons you expressed. The anonymity is controlled by the user(screen name).
Again, thank you for your time, money, and efforts in making this a great discussion board. I’d be happy to help you out as a moderator, if you decide to. You have my e-mail. 😀April 18, 2005 at 2:05 am #8105
Hi KP….I’d just like to second what Guru said. I have been a member of a couple of groups on Yahoo that weren’t moderated, and it was horrible. I joined this site within the last month or so, and I have to say I really enjoy visiting it, as you dont have all the b.s. that goes with some sites..I hope you keep it the way it is, and if I can help in anyway, let me know…PatApril 18, 2005 at 10:21 pm #8106thepooles98Keymaster
KP, keep the registration. This has been a dream not having the spam of your last board. As to moderation, I’m sure you could get some help from the same people who helped before to keep things under control.
You could also walk away for weeks and delete things later. For the most part, aside from some very varied viewpoints on things, this site has been free of the porno stuff that has to be taken off each day.
MikeApril 20, 2005 at 1:40 am #8107
I was wondering what happened to Mr Holmes. He was doing such a great job. He had posted some of my writing about my year at Hallett Station in 1961. I am so sorry he was forced to shut down.
Thanks for stepping up.April 23, 2005 at 6:17 am #8108skua77Keymaster
This site is pleasant and refreshing, and althought I must admiit that I’d also be too busy to moderate this place, I think the present crowd is doing a good job of being, well, moderate. Or am I missing a bunch of moderations and deletions that go on behind the scenes? I hope not, and I hope things can stay the way they are…
Jack, as for Mr. Holmes—Rob is still around, as is his site and your good story of life at Hallett–the only thing that has gone away is the spam-prone message board.April 23, 2005 at 1:43 pm #8109
That is great to know. He did such a great service for OAE’s. I still have one more story to post on that site. How do I get in contact with him, plus I would also like to start writing about my year at Palmer Station 1965, with pictures.May 11, 2005 at 11:53 pm #8110
One must simply know where to find me!
Theice.org is very much alive, but hasn’t changed a whole lot over the years. The truth is, my new career and ever-growing family leaves little time for much else besides paying the bill for the domain! One of these days, I will revamp the whole thing and keep it current with news, pics, etc. Or perhaps my 11-year-old will do it for me one day soon. Also, I actually applied to be a hot-water drill operaotr for the IceCube project, so I may find myself back on the ice next summer. What can I say, I miss the place!
I would love to read about you stay at Palmer and see the pictures. I could probably remember how to put it all on my website as well. Drop me an email.
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