axe to grind with (almost) everyone ...
Yesterday, I was going to post two requests for information on GoKunming. Halfway through typing the first question, I thought better of it. I didn't post either inquiry, to avoid the possibility of unhelpful responses.
I just registered to say poster tigertiger has always been helpful for us new members. Been reading for some months. He is great value to this website. Losing his contributions would be a terrible loss.
As another poster mentioned in the Transferring Money in China thread.
Hidden comments remain hidden even if i try to expand comment. Even now not possible. Reading comments become difficult and an annoyance. I use Firefox.
I have no plans to quit the forum. However, I might take my questions elsewhere sometimes. I just wonder how many other people have chosen to do the same recently.
GoKunming forum is in freefall.
The forum generally operates on two tracks.
On the one hand, you have threads where someone is requesting information, which are typically answered in a helpful and straightforward way.
On the other hand, there is usually a particular thread that becomes a locus of chitchat. The "Transferring money into China" thread is filling this role at the moment. That kind of repartee can be entertaining, and we are still far removed from the pre-downvote era when some pairs of users would feud for many pages with lengthy dueling posts. However, things have definitely regressed somewhat in recent months, maybe due to people becoming habituated to downvotes and paying them less heed.
Not sure what the solution is, but one idea would be for the consequences of heavily-downvoted posts to extend beyond just hiding them. That obviously presupposes preventing abuse of the voting system by sockpuppets and such.
@herenow said, "Not sure what the solution is, but one idea would be for the consequences of heavily-downvoted posts to extend beyond just hiding them. That obviously presupposes preventing abuse of the voting system by sockpuppets and such."
If heavily downvoted posts and their authors were reviewed by moderators, who then objectively decided if further sanctions were needed, then the sock-puppets would not be a problem.
On a different note, free speech comes with some responsibilities. There is no absolute free speech, not even on the internet, despite what some people believe. Many people in the UK don't realize that we have no freedom of speech laws, nor is it in the constitution (UK does not have a constitution). People in the UK have probably absorbed freedom of speech ideals from US TV shows. In the UK we have laws governing what we cannot say. There are slander and libel laws, hate speech laws, D notices, the Official Secrets Act, and the list goes on.
There was a US Supreme Court ruling, years ago, that basically says that people have freedom of speech, until that speech impinges on other peoples freedom. What if our postings are impinging on Gokunming's owners making a living from advertising. Is taking down offensive content censorship? I think not.
Look at the number of accounts that have been purged from social media, in the land of free speech (the USA) recently. Never mind the reasons why, they have gone.
At the moment, most of us are not even in the land of free speech. We are somewhere else.
On GoKunming, most posters self censor when it comes to certain topics, and this both out of respect for GoK and because of big brother.
In short. Arguments about freedom of speech are a bit naive.
I don't watch the nightly news on CNN. Because I think it's crapola. A lot of stories are fake or partially fake. It's excessively negative. They are focusing my attention on things I don't need to be focusing my attention on. It's fear-mongering. There are many reasons I think it's crap. But 100 million viewers would disagree with me as they are glued to their TVs every night watching CNN.
I'm not going to wait for someone to censor it for me. I filter myself what I think is useful information and what I think is not useful or wasteful or harmful.
We are surrouned by crapola everywhere. It's a lot more feasible for you to filter out what you consider crapola than to expect external entities to censor it for you.
It's never going to happen.
Even posters who are well-intentioned have opinions that are questionable. It's up to you to filter.