An Atlanta company called Cox (a radio syndicate with many nationwide stations, has a program on consumer issues hosted by a Clark Howard. Howard had a website (clarkhoward.com) and on that site is a 'messege board' with about 16 headings where you can register and ask questions or give opinions.
About 5 months ago (sept 04?) the show decided that occassional monitoring duties of the staff should be replaced by those volunteers that would be chosen from the registered screen names of current posters. About 6-7 were bumped up to be 'monitors/moderators' with powers to delete or change wording of posts or even 'ban' screen names so the poster could not post again.
There was considerable dissatisfaction with the monitors, a few quit and were replaced. Opposition continued in posts and complaints to the station. Currently the moderators have gotten pretty much out of control. One example is that in a post initiated by a moderator, that moderator was unhappy with a local car dealer named Maxie Price and referred to him as 'that scumbag's dealership'. Something that moderators would most likely have banned if written by an 'ordinary' poster and an injustice to a decent old guy who has some screwey commercials for his dealership but he isn't a 'scumbag' by any means.
I put in my opinion as you will see below and was promptly banned.
The below post (mine) was in reply to "mdiane" who made a short critical post where she asked if a prior poster who was against the moderators censorship was 'high'"
Here is a good example of how out of control the moderators are now.
I registered on the boards 4/16/04 and until today had made 12 posts, only 3 since Oct.
I posted the below item earlier today and now find that I have been tossed off the boards "The reason for this ban is- trashing boards"
This is a totally irresponsible reaction so I have simply reregistered and will continue to use the boards under any screen name even if this new one is also banned.
The post below was in response to a post by 'mdiane', if it can happen to me then it can also happen to you, you may well make some post that a moderator does not like and then you will also be deleted!
01/03/05 10:28 AM
They have their right to protest what they consider an injustice.
Were the 'indians' that dumped the tea into Boston harbor 'high'?
How about those who had that nutty idea "No taxation without representation"? Were they 'high'.
I think they have a decent gripe, one that has annoyed posters here since the CH people decided to turn over to private people the decision as to who could post, what they could say and when/if screen names could be banned.
If anyone was 'high' it would have been those who were at that time 'administering' the boards, they must have been 'high' to think that abrogating their corporate responsibility would work.
As some moderator whose name starts with a G (don't recall what it was, an odd latin sort of name) said some days ago, the powers that be simply told him the mechanics of how to delete, etc, but didn't furnish any info on what standards were to be applied to his monitoring duties.
So you have half a dozen posters, all it seems, promoted from the ranks, all with their own ideas on what they should do, all with their own dislike of some of their fellow posters, these 'monitors' are suppose to act for the show.
That is like telling your ten year old how to drive a car and leaving the keys with him.
If the boards are to be 'monitored' and I am not saying they should be, then it is up to the paid staff at the Howard show to see that it is done in a professional and uniform manner.
Further, that annoying little pop up that we all block when we come onto this site, that messege from Howard, he says in part that he does not believe in censorship. So why is he allowing six or so people whose names he probably doesn't even know, to not only censor posts but to repeatedly 'ban' posters?
It isn't those protesting that are wrong, it is those monitors that Howard has promoted way past their abilities that are wrong.
Cox needs to tell Howard to get his messege board under control or just junk it.
It is big time trouble for Cox if that car guy sues the station and Cox for being slagged off by a Howard moderator. If the other stations get involved in this as a news story I can see that the theme would be 'consumer guru sued for insulting local TV personality' etc.
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