I know cyber bullying is a problem everywhere on the internet, but it wasn't until I experienced that I fully understood the problem.
I am 61 and normally nothing bothers me. I thought that anything on the internet was a simple matter of ignoring it until the other person
or people got bored and stopped. Then I discovered that isn't what happens. There are people who will continue harassing you even when you
ignore them. In fact the more you ignore them the worse they get.
I joined a public forum called Disqus in 2013. I created what they call a channel called Anecdotes and Absurdities. It was a humor
channel to share amusing stories. Then as a joke I created another channel called Mod Whine. Mod Whine was intended as a facetious
counter to Anecdotes and Absurdities where people could make sarcastic threads about their experiences.
A&A became a popular channel in a very short time. MW was pretty much dormant for several months with less than 200 comments. Then the
first part of Dec. 2014 a member made a thread complaining about unfair moderation. The people being accused of being unfair chose
to attack the person who complained. From that point it became an all out war between the members and moderators. The channel went from
dormant to melt down in less than 48 hours. During this time I was trying to gain control of the situation, but the comments were going up
faster than I could go through them for moderation. The moderators responsible were antagonizing the members with personal attacks and
insults. It reached a point where I would go through 1,000 -2,000 comments, refresh the page and there would be another 1,000 - 2,000.
I became frustrated and threw in the towel telling every one to fight it out among themselves because I was not baysitting grown *** adults.
This made the moderators responsible for initiating the problem angry so they launched a full blown attack on me. Eventually a Disqus employee contacted me and asked if he close the channel down for a week to let tempers settle. I agreed. While the channel was closed to anyone making new threads the previous threads remained active. The moderators took the opportunity to continue attacking members and me.
They also started arguments on other channels about the arguments on MW, then brought those arguments back to MW. When the cool down was over I thought Disqus was going to deal with everyone who had been involved, I was so wrong. I was the only one who was held accountable. Not only was I the only one held accountable, but the moderators continued the attacks on me. This was several times a day every day.
I began looking around the forum and discovered these moderators were bragging about messaging one another to join not only arguments with me, but arguments they had with any member. When I asked a Disqus employee what was going to be done about the attacks on members and the moderators bragging about messaging one another to join the arguments his response was they had been told to stay off of my channels.
So basically as long as they did not harass me on two channels they were free to harass me on any other channel as well as any other
member they wanted to harass.
Eventually I learned that moderators were friends with the Disqus employee. I sent an email to the CEO of Disqus outlining the problem.
Disqus response was to update the same rules that were not being enforced by employees.
This is nothing new. There are pages and pages of these moderators harassing people. Disqus stores all of the conversations and have been told on Disqus as well as in emails what the problem is. So Disqus is well aware of the situation. Disqus chooses to give their social interactions with friends a priority over business and doing their job.
Disqus has a minimum age of 13 so there are people of all ages using the forum. What if it had been a person under 18 who had spent a
month being harassed? It is not a matter of if, but a matter of when, that there will be a serious situation caused by Disqus ignoring the
Disqus is not a service you want to add to your independent site unless you want to deal from the fallout of their lack of interest in
dealing with problems.
Disqus Cons: Very frustrating.
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