I just discovered this website a few weeks ago from a link on Fark.com. I saw a link that led to a message board discussing why you always find dead worms dried up on the sidewalk after it rains. So I thought what the heck?, I’ll take a look.
I had heard and observed that the reason worms behaved that way was due to the ultraviolet rays from the sun caused the worms to lose their senses and eventually crawl around aimlessly, dry out, and die.
I wanted to put my two cents into the discussion, so I began the registration process for the Straight Dope website.
I read the rules, they seemed reasonable, so I completed the registration process. I really liked the first line of the rules that read “We basically have one rule: Don’t be a jerk.”
As required by the registration process I was asked to select a username. I did not recall any restrictions on usernames in the rules. I selected the user name of: StraightDoper.
After a few days, I received an email from an administration “moderator”. The “moderator” informed me that my username might be interpreted by some users that I was somehow an official of the website. I thought this was odd because after all, users must choose a username before viewing or posting and the username is a unique name selected by the user.
I complied with the request to change my usename and selected a new username that in my opinion ensured that I held no official position.
I choose the new username of: Straight Dopehead.
A day later, I received another email from the same “moderator” informing me that my second choice of username was not acceptable either and I must choose another name and I was forbidden to use the words “straight dope” in the new username. I was also informed that I may not “fit” the Straight Dope message boards. He also stated that I had complained about the new restrictions imposed on usernames. This was not true, I did not complain whatsoever, I merely complied.
I complied with the request and the new restrictions imposed on the username selection. In my reply to the email I included my third choice of a username that adhered to the new resrictions. I choose a new username of “Username Censored By Website Administration”.
A day later I received another email from the same “moderator” informing me that the latest username I had submitted was also not acceptable. However, he informed me that “against his better judgement”, he would amend the username to “Username Censored”. (I thought, great! This registration garbage is finally over, after all, we are discussing the behavior of worms after a rain shower.)
To my surprise, I received a subsequent email from the same “moderator” informing me that his judgement was indeed poor because the other “moderators” of the message boards deemed the username unacceptable.
After receiving the last email from the “moderator” I realized this nonsense could not continue, I was not going to play a game where the rules could be changed by a “moderator” whenever they deemed necessary. I informed the “moderator” that he was correct, I did not “fit” the boards and would not continue any further.
I did not receive an email response, however my posts were removed from the website. Some users/posters had responded to my comments and questions.
Only a few of my comments still remain on the thread, when someone quoted what I had written. I found this unreasonable because the other users/posters had responded to some facts I had qouted and might like to view or reference them later.
I am curious if anyone else has had the same or a similar experience here.