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Veganpotter - Account Erased!


michaelhobson
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our FRIEND Veganpotter, who contributed nearly 10,000 posts to this board was simply deleted without so much as a epitaph. Maybe that's how some of you treat your friends, but it doesn't sit well with most of us.

Word.

 

I like(d) Potter and his posts a lot. Tells it as he see's it, straight to the point, no pussyfooting around and not afraid to call a spade a spade.

 

Potter was part of this forum, won't be the same without him.

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A sore spot in my heart for that man. I missed him dearly. From day one he was one of my favorite fellow forum member friends here. Vbbf def is not the the same without him. I wish there was a way to bring him back. It's not as easy to keep in touch on myspace; I miss seeing his posts to threads and such. O well, if Robert said he didn't think it was appropriate to have him here and it was his decision, what can we do? It's his forum; it is what it is.

 

On another note, I haven't seen JW in ages and I asked potter on myspace where he went, he said not worry he'll be back, sometimes he disappears for a bit and returns. Miss ya JW!

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On another note, I haven't seen JW in ages and I asked potter on myspace where he went, he said not worry he'll be back, sometimes he disappears for a bit and returns. Miss ya JW!

 

Yeah JW posts like I do, 500 at a time and then disappears for a few months.

 

If you need a Veganpotter fix, I tracked him down through Myspace, had to get a friend to help as I refuse the Myspace evil beast, and as of the wee hours of this morning he's posting away on theveganpeople.com

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I'm not going to write a whole lot about it at this time because of my hectic schedule, but some sort of explanation will probably help some people.

 

For now, I'll just leave it at this.

 

Nobody is going to miss veganpotter on the forum more than I will. Nobody loved the forum more than veganpotter and the decision to close his account wasn't an easy one and was almost a year in the making before it finally happened. What has to be understood is that there is a HUGE difference between being a member on a forum and managing a forum community of 1000+ members, with hundreds of individuals contributing every week or some sort of regular schedule.

 

veganpotter's posting style was not in line with our mission and vision and to some degree caused a great number of problems here resulting in a number of issues that took a lot of time, work, energy and weeks for resolution and this happened on a regular basis.

 

I hated the situation when I finally had to tell my friend who has contributed to the growth of this forum more than almost anyone that he couldn't post anymore because we couldn't find a common ground that allowed him to be himself and still not offend a great number of people; not just a handful as it may be perceived.

 

Please understand that I put a lot of thought into every decision that I make here and that is why we have been thriving based on actively level and posts per day and overall member satisfaction as probably the most popular vegan athlete forum ever. I keep track of numbers and this and that and get feedback from members and lurkers, etc. and we're doing a lot of things right. Not ever decision is an easy one or a popular one and may not be understood very well by members but it is very clear for the management of the group.

 

It is important to understand that there is a big difference between participating and being accountable for the success of the community and making everyone feel welcome, part of the team, etc. A lot goes into it actually and we do our best to keep this a very positive place based on respect for everyone.

 

I'm sad to see veganpotter go too. Many of you don't know him, but he's been to my house every summer since we started the vegan vacation and we've met up multiple times on the East Coast and he's a great friend of mine. We just felt that his posting style was turning more people away (based on a huge amount of feedback) than we could afford to risk if we wanted to remain a popular, friendly vegan forum for everyone to feel welcome here.

 

Even after reading this I know many of you still won't understand. In which case, I will challenge you to start a similar forum, even while ones like this and others already exist and try to make it successful, retain members, get new members, be innovative and creative and offer things no other forum offers, etc. and deal with all the praise and complaints that inevitably come on a regular basis. Give it a try and then stick with it for years and see how the growing pains become part of your regular routine and see how you handle ever given situation.

 

Thanks.

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Rob, your post goes a long way in easing tensions. I hope you'll take one thing from the experience, that is to be proactive in putting out this type of information in advance.

 

I do understand a lot of what you face, I deal with it every day for The Pittsburgh Vegan Meetup, with nearly 250 members and growing, about 2/3 of them active on a regular basis. We've had our disagreements, lost members over it, had to shut down our group email feature and rely only on the message board etc. So, I don't know that there's a right answer that will suit everyone, you're right about that.

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To be honest, that is one of my personal struggles....to share info. I try not to bring up sore subjects or talk about others when they are not here, etc. I've done that in the past and I just don't want to do it anymore.

 

It is a struggle for me to share info because of a number of reasons...my personality, my history of doing things, my comfort levels, trying to avoid confrontation, fearing being misunderstood, etc.

 

My commitment to you and the forum is to work hard to be more open about things that involve the whole community.

 

As I said, it hurt me more than anyone, other than potter, to close his account, but there were many reasons leading me to that decision and I stick to those and claim that a right, just and fair move based on everything that I know and experienced.

 

Gotta get to work now.....

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I wish there was a way to bring him back.

 

Well aint it always just the way

That you don't know what you've got, 'til it's gone

They pulled down paradise

Put up a parking lot

 

 

O well, if Robert said he didn't think it was appropriate to have him here and it was his decision, what can we do? It's his forum; it is what it is.

 

It is indeed.

 

Robert said the same thing about me, and has made no indication of having changed his mind.

I am appalled by the way he treated me, but you are correct - a man can run a forum just as unfairly as he likes.

 

VegansRock is nearly back up, and now Mike Hobson has his own forum, whooee well, anyone who's after me knows where to find me, or has me MySpaced up already. Then, there's always Vegifide.

 

I want it stated loud and clear now though, since i have falled foul of appalling censorship and slander in the past, that no matter what either Richard or Robert might like to think, and seem to have been claiming to others is the case - I *NEVER* left the forum because of anything Veganpotter said. Neither of them consulted me about this before deciding all by themselves, that this is what I thought. Robert has made it clear that he doesn;t actually care what i have to say about it anyway, since you know.... I'm a negative influence and all, anyway.... he seems to feel that this is self-evident.

 

So, it is nothing personal.... I like many people here and hope to see you around Vegifide, Vegansrock, Mike's forum, etc..... but yeah..... I know positivity when i see it, and this aint it.

 

Pfffffght.... after speaking my mind like this then I'll probably just get the "biohazard team" treatment, and be disposed of without a trace again, anyway (shrug).

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Well aint it always just the way

That you don't know what you've got, 'til it's gone

They pulled down paradise

Put up a parking lot

 

Thanks now I got that song stuck in my head

 

Garrr

I don't understand why/how someone could ignore the rest of her post and instead pull out the silly thing.

 

I was thinking about writing a story about people living in a concentration camp where they're worked to death and yet they're still greeting one another with a smile and trying to keep things light and happy. I'm not sure if the point is that mankind has truly become utterly ridiculous or if such people would be doing the right thing in acting such a way.

 

Astrocat,

again I'm sorry how you were treated. I'm sorry you're getting so much less concern than Potter is. I suppose your post might get deleted... I know that's done here. Maybe the whole thread. Gotta keep that positive image, that fake smile. Pretend everything is positive even as we're deleting the accounts of people with 10,000 posts.

 

Michael Hobson,

I just tried to send you a pm seeing as you responded to me here at least but I don't think it sent. I'm free Monday-Friday most of the summer but would first like to talk a bit by pm or email.

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Without getting into any personality issues I would like to say that from a management/business/owner perspective I am 100% with Robert on this. He has said that it was a hard decision, and one that took a very long time to make. I agree veganpotter will be missed a lot, but it is not his website it is Robert's. If people leave just because one person isn't a part of the website than that's up to them. This is veganbodybuilding.com, and vegans, bodybuilders, and the like should not be afraid to post because another individual contradicts them every single time about what they're posting. There were in fact times that I thought of leaving because I felt attacked in posts, but in the end I decided to not let it bother me. Instead I chose to stay because of all the good I see at this place, and all the cool vegans that I have kind of met through posts. That is all I have to say about this. Thanks for reading.

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I was thinking about writing a story about people living in a concentration camp where they're worked to death and yet they're still greeting one another with a smile and trying to keep things light and happy.

 

When i read Brave New World, ah it was so good... but I ached a little after finishing the book, because it only skimmed the surface.... never really touched reality fully, you only saw the betas' story.... but (like they) remained shielded from the reality of the majority of the populace.... and it could have been as you described, in such a highly processed life-environment.

 

 

Astrocat, again I'm sorry how you were treated. I'm sorry you're getting so much less concern than Potter is. I suppose your post might get deleted... I know that's done here. Maybe the whole thread. Gotta keep that positive image, that fake smile. Pretend everything is positive even as we're deleting the accounts of people with 10,000 posts.

 

happy happy, joy joy

That's the spirit !

 

 

Michael Hobson,

I just tried to send you a pm seeing as you responded to me here at least but I don't think it sent. I'm free Monday-Friday most of the summer but would first like to talk a bit by pm or email.

 

I read a post somewhere here about how there might be some kind of temporary wibbly PM situation because of the forum transitioning, so you might want to hit him up at his forum - it's a good one .

http://www.theveganpeople.com

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It is indeed.

 

Robert said the same thing about me, and has made no indication of having changed his mind.

I am appalled by the way he treated me, but you are correct - a man can run a forum just as unfairly as he likes.

 

VegansRock is nearly back up, and now Mike Hobson has his own forum, whooee well, anyone who's after me knows where to find me, or has me MySpaced up already. Then, there's always Vegifide.

 

I want it stated loud and clear now though, since i have falled foul of appalling censorship and slander in the past, that no matter what either Richard or Robert might like to think, and seem to have been claiming to others is the case - I *NEVER* left the forum because of anything Veganpotter said. Neither of them consulted me about this before deciding all by themselves, that this is what I thought. Robert has made it clear that he doesn;t actually care what i have to say about it anyway, since you know.... I'm a negative influence and all, anyway.... he seems to feel that this is self-evident.

 

So, it is nothing personal.... I like many people here and hope to see you around Vegifide, Vegansrock, Mike's forum, etc..... but yeah..... I know positivity when i see it, and this aint it.

 

Pfffffght.... after speaking my mind like this then I'll probably just get the "biohazard team" treatment, and be disposed of without a trace again, anyway (shrug).

 

 

Do you need some attention?

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Hey hey Mike no call for that now, Potter sure had a way with words but he never flat out just came up and dissed me in the style of a typical prepubescent XBox 360 gamer.

 

Hmmm, (peeks at front page) Zack's a moderator here, too ?

 

Well, now.

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Guys, everyone seriously, please, i'm not going to say some cheesy can't we all just get along post b/c not everyone always sees eye to eye on everything and conversations can get out of hand in any situation online or in life, that's just how it is but seriously you're breaking my heart.

 

I am not going to sit here and delete a post or lock this thread as it seems that whenever that happens, everyone feels it is 'controlling' or stopping the natural way to work out controversy.

 

All I can say is, this thread just keeps getting worse and I wish everyone could just ease up and stop attacking each other. We all have our differences and not everyone agrees with each other or has to like each other. I'm not saying to put on a 'fake smile' and just roam around the board and pretend like everyone is your best friend but you know?..... if you don't like someone or you disagree with them to the point where it boils your blood so bad that you want to attack them, there has to be a way to just hold your breath or something, somehow or work it out with an admin.

 

Pm's might not be working but you can always email someone about it. Look i'm not saying that any of these issues are completely out of line, obviously this stems back from something I do not know about and it's only right to be able to talk about it. But dragging others (anyone who reads the forum) into this; I mean everyone reads this and i'm sure that is not you're intention but that's what is happening, cannot be the best way to handle this, can it? Maybe i'm wrong? I would think the optimal way is to send some sort of an email to someone, Richard, SyrLinus, somebody and figure it out. Not everyplace works for everybody. I mean, I wouldn't post on bodybuilding.com in the health food section, well, I wouldn't often, at least. It's too filled with omni type, cottage cheese eating mentality and would drive me nuts! It has in the past. Just as an example and it's an extremely active forum that i could possibly share in. Point is what works for one person may not for another... okay i'm just going way off tangent here, i'm sorry,

 

I guess I just don't know what to say. I hate to have to step in and say something and I am not the type to get in the middle of things that don't pertain to me and honestly, the only reason I have some sort of a moderator status is because there was alot of spam porn threads and i suspect Robert needed help to delete them and I am a pretty active member wo would see them often. Do I even have a say, should I be the one telling someone else to chill or just take a step back and breathe for a moment? I don't know.

 

But as a regular forum member who is no different than anyone one else, I beg anyone who has a serious issue with the way things are run, could you please just email an admin about it and if no one sees eye to eye or can help you, I see no reason why they wouldn't want to at least respond to you and figure out what's wrong. No one is out here to censor the word 'darn' everytime it's written and I can't say anymore, just dunno what to say....

 

peace.

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I'm glad this was addressed, and thank you Robert for your explanation. I have known for a couple weeks that Jeremy was banned from here and it hasn't sit well with me at all that it seemed like he was erased without a word. I'm glad it's out in the open now.

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Although the discussion can r.i.p. now I have to add my 10 cents:

1. As L&G said we have had issues with behavior again and again on this board.

 

2. Without Potter VBB&F has lost more than I can put into words.

 

3. I cannot accept these arguments:

As I said, it hurt me more than anyone, other than potter, to close his account, but there were many reasons leading me to that decision and I stick to those and claim that a right, just and fair move based on everything that I know and experienced.
We tried for months to come to some sort of resolution that worked for both of us and ultimately I closed his account because I didn't feel that his posting style represented our mission and vision and found it to be in some cases detrimental to the forum. He remains a good friend of mine and I think he always will be. I make decisions based on the best interest of the community, so it doesn't matter if you're a popular poster, a moderator or someone new, everyone is expected to be respectful, mindful and tactful and if not, we work on finding solutions with varying outcomes.

I believe that the main problem we have is not the posting style (VPs posting style did not change as far as I can see over the years).

Saying other members have left because of VPs style to discuss is not concrete enough for me to understand the dismission of a 10.000+ poster and a friend of us. I would lkie to know names and dates and see citations.

Additionally I am sure the list of members who used offensive language on the board every once in a while is quite long.

 

4. Robert, if you really want a change of culture you need transparent rules and not a vague mission statement. Every member needs to know what is not accepted and what the consequences are. This can also serve as a guideline for the mods IMO. If someone uses offensive language or has a posting style which is unacceptable he/she needs to be warned and if the behavior does not change, he/she should be deleted and an official statement on the dismission including reasons (citations would be useful) should be made.

 

P.S. Here is a citation of VP from another board:

As for me being kicked off I wouldn't say it was because I was harsh. It was because I was honest. Also I never went after anyone until they insulted me. For the most part I only attacked after being attacked...if you look at any of the negative posts I've put down you'll find someone else insulting me before hand. The difference between them and myself is that I can argue with someone then be fine the next day...some of those people are so thin skinned that it takes months for them to get over anything.
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You're right on this Lean. I started this thread, now if you would all just let it die a peaceful death.

 

I understand that your complaints and feelings go back to being part of a crew of friends for several years that tie into this board. In my own life I've noticed that everything eventually comes to an end. This is often a very good thing. Things that I thought that really sucked, eventually go away. For instance the Bush administration, ....8 years.....an era, has only 211 days left.

 

On the downside I've noticed that good things in my life change or come to an end too. I, my goals and my perceptions will change right along with them too. Sometimes my changes will make other people's changes look worse then they are. Regardless, even good things have ended in my life and I have found it to be bittersweet to move on.

 

It usually takes me a long time to figure this out, but I begin getting suspicious that the wheels of life have turned when I find myself frequently disatisified with something that has been in my life for a while. I'll feel like that things I am entitled to are being denied to me and at the end I will be griping a lot if only to myself.

 

I always feel better after I realize this, shake hands, and move on to something new as well as positive.

 

 

I just created an account on your new forum at theveganpeople.com Thanks for letting us all know about it. It looks like a good group of people.

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Hey Rob;

 

I've run several mailing lists. I know how stressful it can be when it seems like you are getting many messages expressing dissatisfaction.

 

In my experience less than 5% of the regular readers ever post at all. Out of 200 something people on a list, there may be about 6-7 regular posters.

 

Anytime I have had to do something drastic to maintain the list, I've gotten complaints from a few people. I will always get praise for doing it too, often more praise then complaints. In unrelated situations I will often get compliments on the results. A well run, informative and pleasant to use list.

 

The people who scream are frequently are not in the majority opinion.

 

I've found the best way to admin is to allow people a lot of freedom, even when they are being negative. I don't step in until that negativity starts to really stink, and many people are complaining to me, insisting that I do something. As a result, when I step in I have a lot of support and I get praise for doing what I do ( often offline ).

 

It seems like have the good judgment and you are already doing things that way. That says a lot of good things about you. Many people who are smart enough to see this don't have the strength of character to admin their forums that way.

 

I think you are doing a great job and I love using this forum as a result.

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This is another one of those threads that could have been handled privately. This thread does nothing positive for the forum. Now that everyone has had their say, could we please delete this thread and handle future questions and complaints privately?

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