The general approach in moderating comments around here has always been rather hands-off: as long as things didn't get out of control, we mods let it roll. When we start having to explain to SB Nation why our commenters are causing problems at other sites on the network, however, we can't remain idle.
Last week's foray into Backing the Pack (and elsewhere) was at odds with the spirit of the comment section both at RCR and network-wide. SB Nation was founded to be a network of websites for and by sports fans. Instead of taking the approach of traditional sports media, we would eschew the label of "media" altogether and simply express ourselves as fans, understanding that most of our readers would share our same love of sports. Specific to Red Cup Rebellion, this means we could discuss Ole Miss sports in the way we've always wanted to - loaded with snark and after having had a few drinks. What makes SB Nation so much fun to be a part of is that this ethos is more-or-less that of the entire network. While there have been plenty of sites with which we've not meshed well (hey, Roll Bama Roll!), we've found that every manager, contributor, and commenter on the network has the same love and appreciation of the pointless fun that is sports.
And while "pointless fun" might be what y'all were going after when you decided to take the Friday Forum on the road, that wasn't the effect on everyone outside of the joke. There's nothing wrong with visiting other sites on SB Nation, nor is there anything wrong with engaging in conversations elsewhere so long as you do so within the boundaries of their rules and in the spirit of their community. As amusing as some of y'all may have found it to be, interrupting ongoing discussions to leave long strings of irrelevant comments is not in the spirit of any community on the network. The whole thing was, simply put, a tremendous distraction from the work that people like the three of us do to prepare and promote content for an online community of like-minded sports fans. Picking up the generally irreverent fun of a Friday Forum and dropping it off elsewhere, even if well intended and generally harmless, wasted the time and resources of one of our SBNation sister sites as well as the time and resources of SBN leadership - the same SBN leadership that graciously allows us do things like run a terrible Twitter account and compare recruits to Pokemon.
As harmless as some of you may have thought it was, the whole practice of spamming someone else's comments threads reflects poorly both on the Cup and, to a degree, Ole Miss. For that reason, we've asked Maize and Brew to not host the Road Trip tomorrow and now ask you, the commentariat, not to take the Road Trip elsewhere. It invites another unnecessary incident for us and puts strain on the staff of the other site, which has to moderate hundreds of comments instead of putting out content.
We can't keep you from going over to the Michigan blog (or other sites), of course, nor would we even ask for that ability. But know that if you go elsewhere and get banned, that will probably be followed by a network-wide ban from SBN, something we don't control. Any post/comment attempting to organize an en masse takeover of another site will be deleted, and you'll be warned. In short, don't do this stuff. It ain't good southern manners.
Look guys and gals, we're not trying to ruin your fun, and we don't enjoy banning people. We're just trying to run our site (which you get to use for free!), not piss off our bosses, and provide a welcoming community for other fans. We wouldn't at all like it if fans from another community decided to troll our comments threads en masse, so we hope that we can spare our counterparts the trouble.
While we're on the subject, we want to reemphasize the rules and regulations of the comment sections. Here are the things that you will be warned and, if it persists, banned for:
- Any of the -isms
- Ad hominem attacks or needless aggression towards other commenters, including those from other fanbases
- Talking shit about the mods
- Making light of sexual assault, terminal illnesses and the like