A Few Words About Discipline

There are, on a literal level, dozens of topics I'd rather write about here than discipline. But I do need to take a moment to address some problems that have popped up in the last month or so, and the steps we can take together to help solve them.

I know it's a stressful time to be an Orlando Magic fan. The team didn't make it back to the NBA Finals after a stunning run in 2009, its in-state rival just signed two top-ten players to join its incumbent top-5 player, and the team's offseason additions are Chris Duhon and Quentin Richardson. Tensions are running high as people with opposing opinions express them more strongly, with more conviction and, at times, harsher language.

Let me be clear, then: there is no excuse to use profanity at Orlando Pinstriped Post. There was once a time when I'd let it slide as long as it wasn't used in an attacking way, but those days are over. Due to mounting complaints about the language in the comments section, I have no choice but to come down harder on those of you who use coarse language. A few of you have received warnings already. Failure to heed those warnings may result in a ban.

But the comments sections at this web site can grow out of control, especially with breaking roster news such as free-agent signings and trades. And I can't get rid of every bad word as it appears. You can help point them out to me, however, by flagging offensive comments. Here's how.

  1. Locate the "actions" button under the offensive comment.

  2. Click the word "flag," which is next to this icon:

  3. A pop-over menu appears, with an embedded drop-down box to flag the comment as "spam," "troll," or "inappropriate." There is also a text field which you can use to provide any additional information to me. Select the appropriate designation and furnish those details, if you like.

  4. When finished, click the "submit" button. The pop-over menu disappears.

These flags pile up in the same way "recs" do, and I can see via the blog software which users and comments have received the most flags. I intend to be far more vigilant about disciplining problem commenters now than I was previously.

This policy isn't a power trip; I do not relish telling anyone to curb their enthusiasm. But we need to raise the level of discourse here at OPP, and make this site a bit more friendly. Obviously, I invite dissent and debate. We just need to conduct those conversations with the proper level of respect.

And not every instance of profanity is heated; sometimes, it's used for comedic emphasis or overstatement. I get that. But I'm cracking down on all instances of profanity, not merely the overtly belligerent ones.

Profanity is not the only issue; one need not use it in order to treat another person badly. There is no excuse for ever using a personal attack on this site. Name-calling, instigating, and just generally being uncool? Also grounds for a warning and a potential ban.

Thanks for your understanding. The comments section in this post is closed. If you have any questions or concerns, please don't hesitate to contact me. You can find my email address listed in the sidebar on the right-hand side of the page.

Look, we're all here for the same reason: we dig the Magic. We want them to do well. We have different ideas about how they can best achieve their championship goal. Let's keep that fact in mind the next time we start to feel heated, and want to lash out.

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