Why Was This Thread 404'd? And Answers To Other Questions.
All too often of late I see this question being asked and unfounded accusations thrown about. Agendas, COINTELPRO and other more wild and unfounded
claims by members that quite frankly fill in gaps that they think exist out of anger and/or confusion. It is my desire to address those here.
The dreaded 404 or why threads are removed.
There are several reasons for a thread to be removed from public view. And let me make this point
clear, threads are not deleted. They are moved to forums that only the staff can see. One of those is called the Trash Bin. Another is a forum where
the staff can see Alerts and Complaints/Suggestions.
Threads are removed for the following reasons.
- Something about the thread (or the majority of posts within it) violated one or several of the
Terms & Conditions Of Use.
- The thread was a repeat and covered already.
- The thread was really a Complaint that needed to be moved to the Staff Only forum to be handled there.
It really is that simple. So a thread on Bat Boy of the Weekly World News
going to stay in the Medical Issues forum. It is going to be moved, most likely to hoax. But it could end up in the trash depending on how it
progressed or was presented. Enough T&C violations, and it will more than likely end up in the trash.
The Terms and Conditions.
No one is above them. Not long term members. Not moderators and super moderators. Not administrators....Not even the
owners. Springer himself has had a thread removed to the Trash Bin after Staff discussion. And that is the key point there, Staff discussion. Almost
all actions are discussed by the staff before an action is taken. Exceptions to that are obvious extreme violations of the T&C's, such as posting
As members, we ask that you abide by them. As staff, you expect us to enforce them. We provide tools to the members to help us help you by alerting
things that are questionable. Not everyone does and that is fine. But the tools are in place so when you have a problem with something you have seen,
the staff can take care of it so you do not have to do so and in turn risk having your posts removed.
Nothing is worse than trying to read a 5 page thread only to see that 3 pages of posts were removed. And 99% of the time it was due to two or more
people having a spat instead of alerting staff to get involved. And on that note, let me refer you back to the fact that staff decisions often take a
group consensus. And sometimes that discussion takes time. It isn't that your request is ignored, it could be that the post only needs an edit and
no one is on to make that edit. Supers can edit anywhere, regular mods can only edit in their assigned forums.
Often times the staff are accused of various agendas. As a group we do have agenda, two of them in fact. Enforcement of the T&C's and
keeping the site “Family Friendly” We often sum them both up as Civility and Decorum. But we are all human and as such we all have our own
opinions about things.
I personally do not care for the 9/11 Forum. So it is rare that I will read one of those threads. It is even rarer still that I will action posts in
the 9/11 forum for that reason. I don't want personal bias to be a factor. But by the same token, I like Politics. I read and participate in many
threads. I don't often action posts in those thread for the same reason. To avoid personal bias. Which brings up a staff only rule, we do not action
any post in any thread we have participated in prior to that action.
Public discussion of actions.
This is the easiest question of all. It is a privacy issue between the staff and that member alone. Threads that
petition or question why a member was banned, post-banned or had a thread or post removed are not discussed publicly. If you have a problem, send in a
Complaint. The staff does read them. We may not be able to respond and sometimes do not respond, but we do read them.
In conclusion, I hope this has answered a number of questions that many people have had. And I ask that you look over this thread
Index of Important ATS Related Threads
before asking questions that were not
addressed, as it is full of links to many commonly asked questions that have been answered a few times. And
The Freshman Forum
also has answers to quite a few other questions.