Locking threads, revisited

No specific links, because God knows I don’t want to stir up any controversy or open any old wounds, but I would like to put the issue of locking threads at the request of the OP back on the table.

Specifically, I think that it should simply never happen. I understand that threads can be locked by moderators for other reasons (duplicate threads come to mind) but locking a thread simply because the OP did not like the way that it went, especially in the pit, is fucking lame.

Failing adopting my suggestion I would like to see the closing post by the moderator include the exact quote by the OP as to the reason why the closure is requested.

Agreed. Once a post has been responded to, it no longer “belongs” to the OP.

Yeah, I would like to re-visit that too. I had a question in the other thread (which shall remain nameless, in the interest of humanity) which I would like to discuss further. Namely, Cartooniverse requested that his thread be closed when it was moved to the Pit because he doesn’t go to the Pit. The mods obliged (threads being closed is at the discretion of mods, with no hard and fast rules).

I have no problem with this, except it raises the question of favouritism, and the corresponding question about whether or not we have favouritism here, and if so, does it matter?

while i agree with the specific cases cited, i honestly think it’s going to boil down to this:

In spite of claims of melodrama and douchbaggery (in that other thread), I think that this point is actually pretty well made.

Word, fubbles, but why not make the default policy that threads remain open, unless discretion of the mods dictates closing. Now, it’s the other way around.

I seems to me that the case where a thread has been moved to the Pit (or, for that matter, from the Pit) should automatically qualify for closing if so requested by the OP, because the rules have changed in a way unforeseen by the OP.

The others are much more of a grey area, but that doesn’t bother me so much. If a mod wants to put a thread “out of its misery”, so to speak, because it is a trainwreck that really backfired on the OP, then fine by me. This is the approach I prefer, since I really don’t enjoy seeing people getting their asses handed to them, particularly on highly charged and emotional topics. On the other hand, if the mod gleefully posts “hey, you created this trainwreck, you’re gonna suffer, haha hoho heehee”, then that’s also fine by me. Again, personally, I don’t like this approach and have been disappointed when mods have done it, but I ain’t a mod, and I know there’s pressure, and I know there’s grey areas, and I know sometimes arbitrary decisions will go one way or another. After all, it’s just a message board; it doesn’t matter that much.

Sorry I thing fubbles is a particularly cool name and so he/she/it should be able to state the situation as “closing threads is at the soul discression of the mods” since we all hate skinheads.
Refusal to post/read in the pit is no reason to close a thread, if the user concerned actulally cared about the dicusiion its move to the pit would not stop them from replying to or reading the discussion.

Acutally, I think that Giraffe was refreshingly honest in his post this morning, the gist of which was that threads are closed or not on purely nothing more than whim. I had opened a recent thread, and my request to close it was ignored. Not declined — ignored. Another poster in another thread a couple of days later made the same request, and it was honored. Discretion on closing threads is an important perk for mods. They can use it to keep open threads that entertain them, or close threads that piss them off. They can use it as a means to declare, “I like this guy, but not that other guy.” They get precious little compensation for their work, so why deny them this one small exercise of power?

But the OP isn’t obligated to participate in the thread. If they don’t like the way things are done in the Pit, they could just quit reading the thread, or even try to start another on the same topic and request that people confine Pit-worthy comments to the one already in the Pit. (Assuming it wasn’t the original post itself that got it sent to the Pit.) But why should people discussing the thread in the Pit be forced to stop?

Then again, if a thread is closed at the request of the OP, someone else could always start another thread on the same topic. I guess I don’t see why it’s such a big deal one way or the other.

Ponder Stibbons, I am sure that you are a great guy, but I have to say that I disagree with everything that you just said. Perhaps I am in a black and white mood today, but I really see no gray area here. Open a thread, deal with how people react. If you have a problem with how people reacted, think about modifying your behavior in the future.

To even be enough of a pussy to ask that a thread be closed just because you don’t like the way that it went is lame enough, but for a moderator to do so strikes me as extra lame. As I stated in the OP, if a moderator is going to close a thread just because the OP asked them to do so I think that a direct quote of the posters request is in order so that it can be open for public debate.

Ponder, I might agree with this if a seemingly harmless MPSIMS thread gets hijacked to Pitsville, screaming bloody murder all the way. That is, if it ain’t the OP’s fault.

In the **Cartooniverse **case, he opened a thread with a post which was clearly Pit material. The rest of the thread would have been quite appropriate for MPSIMS or IMHO (which is where he opened it). So this was not a case of his thread getting hijacked and becoming appropriate for the Pit, the mod thought (correctly, I think) that he opened the thread in the wrong forum to start with.

In that case, I can’t see where he has a leg to stand on requesting closure. If he’s been banned or warned by mods not to go in the Pit, that does not give him license to start a Pit thread in another forum. If his pit-banning is a self moderation banning, that does not give him license to start a Pit thread in another forum.

All this situation has done is left a huge slanderous (or is it libelous, I can never remember if the internet is the “written word” or not) post with no evidence and no way for those who could provide a real defense to do so if they choose. And the “don’t open another thread because one has been locked” rule prevents us from hashing it out in another thread, even if we could keep in IMHO or GD. This action effectively cuts off the options **tim314 **speaks of.

He started a Pit thread, whether or not it was in the Pit. It should not be closed for being moved to its appropriate forum.

Because the way that things work now seem rather arbitrary and stupid. Someone can open a thread (again, especially in the Pit) that turns into a train wreck and then go crying to mom and it gets closed because the other posters are being meeeeeeeeeeeeeean, but another poster can ask for the same thing and be told to suck it up.

This is why I am saying that I would like a clear policy that the OP just doesn’t get to have the thread closed. Sorry, take your lumps if you don’t like it stop opening stupid threads or change your behavior

The thread that sparked this thrilling ‘controversey’ has been reopened.

For those interested in facts, we don’t close threads on demand. Or even by whimsy, for the humor impaired among us. People are responsible for the consequences of what they post. We just jump in to throttle off threads because they backfire.

This particular situation was unusual. Cartooniverse had been admonished about his posting behavior. He was under the impression he wasn’t allowed to post in the Pit under threat of banning, so he requested Czarcasm to either move the thread back to IMHO or close it. Czarcasm wasn’t familiar with the situation, so he locked the thread. That’s it. Nothing hideously complicated or dire.

It took a while to track down exactly what Cartooniverse had been told about posting in the Pit. As it turned out, he had been told he was responsible for his own behavior. He was also advised, in very strong terms, to avoid situations likely to cause him trouble. He took that to mean he would be banned if he posted in the Pit. Not so, and he’s been advised of that. It was a communications hiccup.

No Pit prohibition, no special rule, no carte blanche, no double-secret probation.

Though the whimsy part and rampant favoritism sure sounds like it’d be cool.


Being a mod is suich a thankless task, there must be some perks to the job. I vote that these be added to the standard mod salary package. :stuck_out_tongue:

“Actually” it was “this thread” that prompted me to post the OP on this “controversy”. I will try to be more thrilling next time :rolleyes: