Sun Mar 21, 2010 4:03 pm
There is ONE and only one very good reason why a forums guideline forbids discussion of religion and politics in these forums.
It never ends well. It ends with bad feelings and animosity. It divides people.
We see that in the world. We won't see it here.
Unfortunately and inevitably, there will be other topics that come up from time to time that some folks find to be objectionable for whatever reason... personal experience, philosophical, or um, "back over to religion and politics."
There was recently such a topic, about a site about adultery that requested a site review.
As far as I'm concerned, there is a far more fundamental principle involved here, one that trumps whether any individual objects to the material or not, for whatever reason..
Freedom of speech.
There is no question about SiteSell kicking out sites that some people find objectionable.
Kicking out a site starts at a far more extreme level of subject matter (ex., pedophilia, racism). Restricting freedom of speech because a site is about adultery? That's a slippery slope no freedom-loving person wants to stand on.
It makes no difference where I, and hopefully you, stand on these actual subjects. Nor do we expressly shut SBIers down from expressing a viewpoint, as long as it does not wander into religion or politics, for the same freedom of speech reasons.
Folks, of course, will respond to those objections. And we're off into a debate that can get as hot as religion or politics. At a certain point, we need to get back to business...
1) These are business forums.
2) They are also the most helpful, friendly, success-focused forums in the world.
3) So while we get into these debates from time to time, the "religion and politics" PRINCIPLE will eventually lead a moderator to lock it down.
It has NOTHING to do with condoning a site or a topic. It has everything to do with getting sidetracked, creating divisions and bad feelings. Here's what always happens...
The debaters fail to recognize that they will never change the others' minds. At best, a cool, well-presented argument may sensitize some readers to certain issues that may not have been considered by "the other side." If that happens, it's actually constructive.
More commonly, however, the tone becomes sharp and harsh and lecturing. When that happens, true communication stops because "the other side" not only stops listening, it resists more strongly than ever. Finally...
There comes a time when what has been said is all that needs to be said. Forward progress has stopped.
At that point, my recommendation to moderators is to lock it down and move forward. And that is what the moderator did here in his own good judgment.
At the end of the day, these forums are about business. There are lots of other forums to get heated up about non-business matters.
If you don't want to help someone because of a site's subject matter, that's your choice. Ignore it. If you really must register an objection to a site's subject matter, go ahead.
I suggest that you do it in a calm, "help and be helped" manner, where you try and open the eyes of the other party. You'll have a much better chance to communicate.
Heat never cools down a hot topic.
And when the moderators decide it's time to move on and focus on business again, we move on. It's just one more little thing, of 1,000 little things, that the moderators do to keep these forums at the high level at which they function.
So when a thread is locked, please respect that and do move on (i.e., don't start another).
It really is about getting back to business.
All the best,