I would like to have a honest, mature discussion on what the purpose of forum is or should be and would like to get the moderator's input as well as I think this is something that requires clarification.
I've always treated it as a little corner on the Internet where expats in Kunming or people interested in the expat community in Kunming can come and share ideas about any topic as long as we adhere to the rules.
Personal opinions and reviews are just that, personal. Just because someone said it doesn't mean it's true and doesn't mean the GK population aren't smart enough to make their own judgement regarding the validity of the opinion. If someone says "KM has the worst burger in the world, a dog could take a **** and still make a better one", why should it be removed simply because it might feel vindictive or vulgar? I would think that an typical GK user has enough intelligence to say "Wow, that guy has issues" instead of "OMG! KM burgers are ****, I must stay away from said restaurant at all costs!"
To call for censorship just because there is information we don't like smacks of dictatorship. To randomly lock-threads, remove postings, delete reviews inconsistently ultimately hurt the forum in the long-run because people have an emotional attachment to their postings and by removing them without explanation, you'll start alienating users such as BillDan and others that have come and gone who, despite what some may believe, contributes to the vibrant multifaceted rainbow that is the internet. Without the ability to post honest, thoughtful opinions all you'll be left is the Stepford wives and trolls contributing to a bland forum.
I don't know about the other users, but while the articles and and travel tips are nice, the main draw for me is the forum, a place where I can interact with my fellow expat and get a slice of hometown discussions. I remember there was a period some time ago where nothing of controversy was allowed and the website felt dead, now it feels lively. And if the web masters did a traffic study, I'm sure a correlation between web traffic and activity in the forum can be found. And isn't web traffic the life blood of a website that is supported by ads?