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When a 'poster' goes off the rails..

Beach Chick Jan 15, 2013 08:29 AM

What to do when somewhat of a new poster becomes combative, looking for a fight and has no sense of reasoning to their post..
(no, I'm not talking about me)
; )

Feed the troll, ignore them, report them or banter with them?

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  1. melpy RE: Beach Chick Jan 15, 2013 08:33 AM

    I tend to feed the troll or ignore. I try not to report anything that isn't black and white.

    1. g
      GH1618 RE: Beach Chick Jan 15, 2013 08:45 AM

      Reporting is only for posts that are genuinely vulgar or offensive in some other way (more than merely insulting), I think.

      4 Replies
      1. re: GH1618
        The Chowhound Team RE: GH1618 Jan 17, 2013 01:45 PM

        Please report insulting posts -- we're actually rather more likely to delete a post for being insulting than for being vulgar. If it's both insulting and vulgar, of course, we're really likely to delete it.

        1. re: The Chowhound Team
          Fowler RE: The Chowhound Team Jan 17, 2013 05:18 PM

          >>>Please report insulting posts<<<

          Ok, then. I would like to report an insulting post. INDIANRIVERFL went to a wine tasting at Glorioso's. He posted a full review here yet never invited the rest of the local posters (myself included) to that tasting. I find that he would report about it but not invite us insulting!

          1. re: Fowler
            INDIANRIVERFL RE: Fowler Jan 18, 2013 10:38 AM

            It was a surprise a from my nieces who share a flat a block away. They even paid for it!! I plead innocence.

            1. re: Fowler
              sunshine842 RE: Fowler Jan 18, 2013 10:43 AM


        2. f
          fourunder RE: Beach Chick Jan 15, 2013 08:57 AM

          I used to banter with them, but.....

          then I would be deleted....

          then I would then be spanked...

          then I would be suspended.....

          I have since tried reporting....but am often ignored...

          So now I just ignore.

          1. Fowler RE: Beach Chick Jan 15, 2013 09:26 AM

            I ignore them. I have better things to do with my time than engage one who is illogical and simply looking for a fight.

            1. Jay F RE: Beach Chick Jan 15, 2013 09:31 AM

              Fifth alternative: tell us who you're talking about.

              1. i
                INDIANRIVERFL RE: Beach Chick Jan 15, 2013 09:33 AM

                Ignore. I was suspended for a totally tongue in cheek response once.

                1. pinehurst RE: Beach Chick Jan 15, 2013 09:35 AM

                  I think Fowler is right. Years ago, I had an issue with a poster who used a disparaging term that should have died in the 1920's--one that's commonly directed at Italian Americans . I took umbrage and told a mod that it wasn't okay, but s/he said "I've heard it in common use in that context" (a real g****a sandwich place).

                  So the mod (again, this was years ago) did nothing, the poster was unrepentant, and that was it. I guess you have to pick the battles carefully.

                  15 Replies
                  1. re: pinehurst
                    Googs RE: pinehurst Jan 15, 2013 09:39 AM

                    I doubt that's a choice the mods would make today. However, if you see it again why don't you post about it? If its a decision they stand by, its a decision they shouldn't mind being made public.

                    1. re: pinehurst
                      jrvedivici RE: pinehurst Jan 15, 2013 10:10 AM

                      Hahahaha I'm half Italian (mom's side) so raised in a very Italian household and I have NO idea what word you are eluding to.

                      Do me a favor my email is on my profile send it to me privately. I feel like the last place contestant on Wheel of Fortune.

                      1. re: pinehurst
                        Jay F RE: pinehurst Jan 15, 2013 11:08 AM

                        The "G-word" didn't use to be the "G-word." Is this the reason the Guinea-T (shirt) is now called the wife beater?

                        1. re: Jay F
                          LizGW RE: Jay F Jan 21, 2013 04:36 AM

                          Because that term is so much less offensive.

                          1. re: LizGW
                            Jay F RE: LizGW Jan 21, 2013 06:21 AM


                        2. re: pinehurst
                          jrvedivici RE: pinehurst Jan 15, 2013 12:08 PM

                          If as Jay F has so kindly cued me into if that is in fact the term I would have absolutely no offense taken to that. If anything if that's the way someone described a sandwich place by saying "It's a real guinea sandwich place" I would think immediately..."That's right up my ally" !!!

                          I consider myself a rather thick skinned kind of person...and it goes way beyond the fact I'm fat. If someone feels the need to sink to a level of name calling then I look at is as if it's that persons problem. You can call me fat, dumb, guinea etc. and it really won't bother me, because I know who I am and when it comes to what people say who don't know me....well it's their loss.

                          Now say that about my mom or kids and we have another story.

                          1. re: jrvedivici
                            fourunder RE: jrvedivici Jan 15, 2013 03:43 PM

                            and all this time I thought the reference was to *Goomba*

                            1. re: fourunder
                              Island RE: fourunder Jan 17, 2013 05:23 PM

                              Me too.

                              1. re: Island
                                Bob W RE: Island Jan 18, 2013 12:11 PM

                                I'm not surprised the word in question was guinea (or ginny as might see it spelled in a Richard Price novel). I grew up in RI, which has probably the highest percentage of Italo-Americans in the US, and that was considered very insulting. I remember some kid telling me a joke about what an Italian helicopter sounds like.

                                Now, I could see a place call itself "Goomba's." In fact, there is a winery in Leesburg VA called Quattro Goombas!

                            2. re: jrvedivici
                              Bobfrmia RE: jrvedivici Jan 15, 2013 07:29 PM

                              The "Guinea Grinder" was a sandwich I grew up with in Des Moines. Big Italian population, many Italian sandwich shops. They all made them.
                              Just a loose meat sandwich using Italian sausage and a little sauce and cheese on a bun.
                              The term died out only a couple years ago. I've read post on Chowhound from people visiting that were appalled by this.
                              We're a little more laid back. The older folks still forget it's now just a grinder, the people at places like GRAZIANOS, just smile when they hear it.

                              1. re: Bobfrmia
                                Mr Taster RE: Bobfrmia Jan 18, 2013 11:30 AM

                                The term "loose meat" offends my sensibilities, moreso than "guinea" (which I'd never before heard as a pejorative term for Italians)

                                Mr Taster

                                1. re: Mr Taster
                                  Bob W RE: Mr Taster Jan 18, 2013 12:12 PM

                                  Mmmmm, loose meat. When I spent a year in Gainesville FL, there was a loose-meat sandwich shop run by some Iowans. Good stuff!

                                  1. re: Bob W
                                    Mr Taster RE: Bob W Jan 18, 2013 01:18 PM

                                    The problem is that the phrase itself, "loose meat", is evocative of so many things other than a delicious foodstuff, that the term is utterly and forever tainted.

                                    Taint! Did you hear me? Tainted, I say, it is!

                                    Mr Taster

                                  2. re: Mr Taster
                                    roxlet RE: Mr Taster Jan 19, 2013 07:33 AM

                                    Oh, guinea has a history of pejorative use. When I was in 7th grade or so, I used to be followed down the hill from school by two boys who would sing "Guinea, guinea, guinea, wop, guinea, guinea wop," to the tune of "Shimmy, shimmy, cocoa pop, shimmy, shimmy, pop." And this wasn't in some place where Italians were a little known ethnicity. This was in NYC, my friend.

                              2. re: pinehurst
                                pinehurst RE: pinehurst Jan 15, 2013 01:58 PM

                                I'm not into slang terms to describe ethnic or racial groups, that's all. There are other ways to describe a place "Italian like your mom made" or "Old school Italian. $.02

                              3. Googs RE: Beach Chick Jan 15, 2013 09:36 AM

                                I ignore them. It's clear everyone here can read and exhibit judgment. The angry poster scenario sorts itself out over time.

                                I make an exception if it's clear their type of fighting will poison the water for all. E.g. Remarks that are implicitly or explicitly racist. That I report without hesitation or remorse.

                                1. Melanie Wong RE: Beach Chick Jan 15, 2013 11:46 AM

                                  Hit the report button. I'd rather err on the side of "over reporting" than under and let the mod team decide. Also by the time someone reviews the situation, it often has escalated and all that could have been avoided with early reporting.

                                  Waste of time to feed trolls, the message just gets deleted and I could have been doing something more productive. . . though I can't say I always take my own advice.

                                  2 Replies
                                  1. re: Melanie Wong
                                    ipsedixit RE: Melanie Wong Jan 15, 2013 11:53 AM

                                    Reporting it to the mods often doesn't kill a troll.

                                    Many times a troll won't be outright obvious.

                                    For example, if someone asked for the best restaurant in NYC, and the troll said "American Kitchen and Bar" how is that a reportable offense?

                                    Even if said troll were to go on and opine about how great the burgers and fries are at American Kitchen and that they make Per Se seem like McDonald's, I still don't see how that's a post that the Mods would take down.

                                    I could be wrong, however.

                                    While an exaggeration perhaps, but I believe that's the kind of troll the OP was referring to.

                                    1. re: Melanie Wong
                                      Servorg RE: Melanie Wong Jan 15, 2013 03:17 PM

                                      I like to paraphrase that old satirical adage (sounds like something that might have come out of Chicago in the Al Capone and Eliot Ness days) with regard to voting:

                                      "Report early and Report often"

                                    2. KaimukiMan RE: Beach Chick Jan 15, 2013 12:04 PM

                                      I used to try reasoning with them, clue them in, etc. Found it isn't productive to give clues to the clueless. It's usually best to ignore, but occasionally one doesn't realize what's going on until too late and you've been sucked in.

                                      It's important to remember that choosing to stop participating is NOT the same as admitting defeat. If its necessary you can end things by saying that you have decided to "agree to disagree" and leave it at that. Often the obstinate poster will choose to claim victory at that point. Uhh... ok, fine whatever, I have better things to do like find out what strange thing someone found at Costco or the Dollar Store this week.

                                      3 Replies
                                      1. re: KaimukiMan
                                        Servorg RE: KaimukiMan Jan 15, 2013 02:39 PM

                                        " Often the obstinate poster will choose to claim victory at that point."

                                        At least we don't have to watch them do a touchdown "dance" in front of us in the end zone... ;-D> (having football on the brain during the playoffs is not a pretty problem)

                                        1. re: Servorg
                                          ipsedixit RE: Servorg Jan 15, 2013 02:49 PM

                                          Careful Servorg.

                                          That might be the next "feature" in the Chow software update.

                                          1. re: Servorg
                                            Vidute RE: Servorg Jan 15, 2013 10:26 PM

                                            how about on a hotel?


                                        2. Veggo RE: Beach Chick Jan 15, 2013 12:19 PM

                                          I used to try to lure them further down the primrose path toward self-destruction, but was advised simply not to feed the trolls. I report some and mods are responsive.

                                          1. roxlet RE: Beach Chick Jan 15, 2013 03:21 PM

                                            There are a few posters who are particularly combative, and I used to try to engage them in a discussion. Now, I report every post that I find argumentative, nasty or clearly provoking -- whether to me or someone else. The mods are pretty responsive in deleting the offending posts, but of course I have no idea what goes on between the mods and the troll -- whether they are warned or whatever, but I have learned to avoid engaging them in any discussion even when they are purposefully attacking me.

                                            2 Replies
                                            1. re: roxlet
                                              sal_acid RE: roxlet Jan 15, 2013 07:05 PM

                                              My grandfather gave me sage advice.

                                              "you can't win a pissing contest with a skunk"

                                              1. re: sal_acid
                                                Mr Taster RE: sal_acid Jan 18, 2013 11:32 AM

                                                I now love your grandfather. That's a great expression.

                                                Mr Taster

                                            2. b
                                              ButterYum RE: Beach Chick Jan 15, 2013 07:13 PM


                                              1. jmcarthur8 RE: Beach Chick Jan 17, 2013 02:16 PM

                                                My two mottoes when I worked the customer service desk at a bank (and you know how cranky people can get about their money!).

                                                1. Take the high road.

                                                2. Kill 'em with kindness. It disarms them.

                                                1. Ruth Lafler RE: Beach Chick Jan 17, 2013 05:36 PM

                                                  I tend to ignore. Each one of us has a different idea of what is annoying (as shown by some of the examples in this discussion). I occasionally indulge in the sport of troll-feeding (she says, hanging her head in shame).

                                                  What drives me batty is a situation slightly different from what I think you're talking about which is when a new poster comes in throwing his/her weight around, and/or being rude or insulting, doesn't like the responses s/he gets and starts complaining about how rude people are being. Anyone who thinks people on chowhound are rude needs to go back to fairy land -- chowhound is in about the 90th percentile of civility among discussion sites on the internet!

                                                  6 Replies
                                                  1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                    Beach Chick RE: Ruth Lafler Jan 18, 2013 07:13 AM

                                                    'I occasionally indulge in the sport of troll-feeding (she says, hanging her head in shame).' LOL

                                                    Concur that Chowhound has a wonderful cast of characters with civility and decorum in the 90+% percentile that is unprecedented for an on-line forum..
                                                    \We have incredible MODS.

                                                    1. re: Beach Chick
                                                      Ruth Lafler RE: Beach Chick Jan 18, 2013 09:40 AM

                                                      We do. I get deleted sometimes, and about 99 percent of the time I deserved it.

                                                      I spent many years on an unmoderated usenet forum infested by one of the most vile trolls imaginable. She would "befriend" people offline and then use personal things she learned about them against them in ways that would make the Westboro Baptist Church proud. Having experienced the "joys" of an unmoderated forum, I'll accept the moderation here gladly, even when it's directed towards me!

                                                      1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                        Beach Chick RE: Ruth Lafler Jan 18, 2013 10:06 AM

                                                        'She would "befriend" people offline and then use personal things she learned about them against them in ways that would make the Westboro Baptist Church proud'
                                                        WOW..from a psychology standpoint, I'm fascinated by how their mind works.

                                                        I've been to the watershed many times from the MODS and have no issues with it...maybe once or twice but all is forgiven..they all do such a great job!

                                                        There is a poster from another forum that is so whacked and did similar things and could see the circling of the drain of responses and alerted the mods...they were banned and come back to life with a new name but you can see the writing styles a mile away.

                                                        Always so great to read your posts Ruth...you are a truly beloved treasure on Chowhound!

                                                        We are dealing with a somewhat new poster who has been so combative that it sucks the happy out of our board.

                                                        1. re: Beach Chick
                                                          Ruth Lafler RE: Beach Chick Jan 18, 2013 11:27 AM

                                                          Oh yeah, her mind was an ugly sewer. One that sticks in my mind was "God knew what he was doing when he gave you that miscarriage." Even more surprising was that she had her own little set of followers -- people who weren't so much evil as stupid and vicious. Some people will do anything to "belong"!

                                                          1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                            pinehurst RE: Ruth Lafler Jan 18, 2013 11:46 AM

                                                            I put down my Diet coke at that quote, Ruth. Un be freaking lievable. And so sorry you had to encounter it at any level.

                                                            1. re: pinehurst
                                                              Ruth Lafler RE: pinehurst Jan 18, 2013 11:53 AM

                                                              Just to clarify, that wasn't aimed at me. But it was just so unforgettably beyond the pale -- that's why it reminds me of WBC. She also went after a woman who had just lost her husband to a drunk driver.

                                                  2. iL Divo RE: Beach Chick Jan 18, 2013 11:35 AM

                                                    I'm try to be mindful to ignore becuz what a person like that usually feeds on is in fact a comment back. I'm not always successful tho becuz being rude right back is coming down to their level which admittedly I'm guilty of.
                                                    report ? > sure BUT the odds of getting a reported post deleted doesn't necessarily happen just becuz you've asked.

                                                    1. m
                                                      Mollybud RE: Beach Chick Jan 20, 2013 01:25 PM

                                                      We are all human, and no one is perfect. Everone has the right to express themself. If it offends you ignore it. what harm has it done?

                                                      7 Replies
                                                      1. re: Mollybud
                                                        Servorg RE: Mollybud Jan 20, 2013 01:33 PM

                                                        "Everone has the right to express themself. If it offends you ignore it. what harm has it done?"

                                                        The problem comes from the first part of your thought above. When a flame war breaks out then the actual content being discussed gets lost in the verbal fisticuffs that break out.

                                                        The second part of your thought above seems to completely contradict your first part. If posters would simply report posts that they think are offensive and leave it up to the site moderators to determine whether the post is in direct violation of this sites rules and policies we would have many fewer problems.

                                                        1. re: Servorg
                                                          Mollybud RE: Servorg Jan 20, 2013 01:41 PM

                                                          What damage has been done?

                                                          1. re: Mollybud
                                                            Servorg RE: Mollybud Jan 20, 2013 01:47 PM

                                                            The content of the discussion is completely swamped by the flaming fight that breaks out when everyone decides to exercise that "right" to express themselves. It also invites outside agitators if let go that have no interest in the mission/intent of this site but just come to fan the flames and troll as outrageously as they can.

                                                            1. re: Servorg
                                                              Googs RE: Servorg Jan 20, 2013 02:44 PM

                                                              If I may add, everyone has a bad day. Sometimes a person can be overly aggressive or sensitive for reasons outside of this forum. The words should be taken away so the relationship between writer and reader doesn't sustain long-lasting damage.

                                                            2. re: Mollybud
                                                              Ruth Lafler RE: Mollybud Jan 20, 2013 04:37 PM

                                                              If they perceive the environment to be hostile, people who might have something valuable to contribute will go elsewhere. I've seem people remark about being intimidated by the discussion here -- just imagine if people were allowed to flame away at will!

                                                              Mostly, I'll note that people agree to the moderation here as part of the terms and conditions when they sign up. This is a commercial enterprise and the owners have the right to run it any way they want to, and the posters have no rights at all!

                                                          2. re: Mollybud
                                                            latindancer RE: Mollybud Jan 20, 2013 02:23 PM

                                                            <what harm has it done?>

                                                            The problem, for me, arises when the person 'expressing themselves' blatantly lies about something I've posted.
                                                            My ignoring them, which I do, it only allows that person to have posted something that's not true without any consequence.

                                                            1. re: Mollybud
                                                              Lillipop RE: Mollybud Jan 21, 2013 01:33 AM

                                                              Be VERY careful Mollybud:) VERY careful:(

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