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  • Not Sure What To Do

    The on going feud that seems to be never ending between two forum members is not only getting very old and tiresome, it has also become a distraction.
    I on a personal level think it is sad that two adult Scouter's seem to be going at each other. I can't for the life of me see any real reason for this.
    I'm now asking myself, what I should do about it?
    I have asked them not to post their personal attacks in the forum and use the Private Message area if they feel the need to make comments about each other.
    It seems that my request just isn't working.

    Looking at my options:
    * Do nothing.
    I'm sure that some forum members find this bickering entertaining.
    Both do make good points and when they are not fighting and goading each other do add a lot to the forum.
    Maybe they will get tired and stop?
    * Spend time editing out the not so nice stuff.
    I have done that. In fact I started to do it again today.
    Problem is that at times these edits leave "Holes" in the thread which can take away from the thread.
    * A Time Out.
    In the past we have asked people to take a time out and not post for a while. The hope is that they cool off and return with a better attitude.
    * Remove Them From The Forum.
    Sad as it might be in the past one or two people have been removed from the forum and not been allowed to post.

    I wish there was some way that as a moderator I was able to impose the "Ignore User" on both of them, so that they couldn't read what the other posted. As far as I know I can't do that.
    At this time I'm at a loss to know what is in the best interest of the forum and the forum members.
    I will admit that by my posting this here is that maybe they will see the light and stop behaving like they have been.
    I am ready to read both point the finger and blame the other.
    I really don't want to come off seeming heavy handed or on some kind of a power trip.
    I'm not sure if maybe I'm just guilty of making a mountain out of a mole hill?
    I am open to suggestions.
    Maybe to avoid any embarrassments sending them by PM might be the best thing to do?
    It of course goes without saying hat the easy solution would be if they both just stopped picking on each other. If they did this sooner rather than later that would be wonderful.
    Eamonn.

  • #2
    Some people are just oil and water they won't mix no matter what. Some of the bickering is amusing reading but it sometimes gets out of hand. I read a post today where someone new was not coming back because they felt they had been mistreated. Sometimes the very familiarity we strive for breeds contempt for politeness. This I think is one of those human nature things most of us fight more with our spouse and kids than anyone else.(This message has been edited by scottteng)

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    • #3
      I am not sure what tell you Eamonn, let's consider how BSA leadership skills could be applied.

      If you had two people on a committee who did not get along, Would you talk with each of them and listen objectively and empathetically to discover the core issue with each?

      Or would you talk to everybody but them and make a decision without any actual information about the two people involved?

      Which do you feel would be the better leadership approach?(This message has been edited by Bob White)

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      • #4
        I have mixed emotions. Things did get kinda boring during the imposed suspension (which you kindly called "asking them to take a time-out"). I find it interesting that whenever there is a dispute, the same ones are in the middle of it. The same people always get criticised for their "tone and demeanor" and some NEVER get criticised. And the ones that do are quick to point out that "he did it first" or "he's not following the rules!!!". Sheesh...GROW UP, PEOPLE!!!!

        The sad thing is that new people show up and quickly decide they didn't come here to be denigrated and preached at and leave. As someone once said, this site is open to the public...how many potential scouts and parents have we "turned off" because of the behavior on this forum. As Beavah points out, this is a game for children, for cryin out loud. Those who get their shorts in a wad because someone has a patch a quarter inch out of place have no business calling themeselves a "leader" and I don't want to be around them. In fact, I think the organization as a whole has outlived its usefulness and I probably won't be renewing my 35 year tenure at the end of this year.(This message has been edited by scoutldr)

        Comment


        • #5
          Well Eamonn, being nice hasn't been effective, no way I could show the forebearance you have.

          If they can't play nice, no more warnings just progressively longer suspensions of posting priveleges. If they don't come back, were they just here for the feud?

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          • #6
            Bob White,
            You ask:
            "If you had two people on a committee who did not get along, Would you talk with each of them and listen objectively and empathetically to discover the core issue with each?"
            I kinda think you already know what I'd do?
            Still I'm willing to play along.
            Lets for a minute pretend that I'm the parent of a new Scout who has been asked to serve on that committee.
            Would I see attending meetings where two members "Go at it" as time well spent?
            Would I really want to continue attending the meetings?
            What if I was the COR?
            Would I see this bickering as harmful to the unit and maybe harmful to the CO which I represent?
            If I was the Committee Chair?
            Sure I'd want to have a word with both parties.
            Finding the right time and place.
            I'd explain how what they were doing (Their actions) were harming the unit and the people around them.
            I'd be OK with them agreeing to disagree, but not OK with what they were doing.
            You are right that subjecting people to a public flogging is not the way to go about things. (Not that you said that!)
            I have asked both persons involved in this to not continue as they have.
            I hope that I haven't taken sides or showed any sort of favoritisms?
            My goal is for it to stop.
            My hope is that that it will.
            At this time I have not discussed this with the other moderators. Mainly because I never know when they will be around.

            Bob, what would you do if there were two Sea Scouts in the same Crew that even after being asked to cool it, continued to pick on each other and bicker?
            Eamonn.

            Comment


            • #7
              Hi Eamonn,

              Unfortunately, I don't have any useful advice for you. Personally, I don't waste my time on them. I've been ignoring them and some others for quite some time in the hopes that they'll get tired and go away because no one will play with them. Still waiting. They obviously can't be true Scouters because they have violated just about every one of the 12 points. I have little use for "Scouters" who blatantly ignore the Oath, Law, and Motto . Good luck.

              Comment


              • #8
                Eamonn Asks "Bob, what would you do if there were two Sea Scouts in the same Crew that even after being asked to cool it, continued to pick on each other and bicker?"

                Thank you for asking,

                I would talk with them individually and ask them about the relationshipo and whatthey see as the cause and solution. Then I would listen carefully to their answer not for the porpose of finding the solution intially but to try and understand each person better.

                Then I would look carefully at what was causing the conflict.

                Let's say for instance that one person was teaching a scout how to terminate the woring end of a halyard line after a mainsail was hoisted, but was tying the knot incorrectly or using the wrong knot. As you know there is a right and a wrong way to do this, and if done wrong the mainsail can collapse and the safety of the boat and those onboard would be at risk.

                So then another Sea Scout explains that here in the manual it explains the correct knot and the correct way to tie it.

                So the first Scout gets angry and verbally attacks the second. The first scout points out that he has a higher rank, or used to be a boatswain in the ship, and uses that as his crentials for teaching the wrong knot.

                So the second Scout explains that if not done corectly it can damage the sail or injure a sailor. The first person again verbally assaults the second.

                The scout watching is confused and uncomfortable. He is in the middle of a disagreement when all he wanted was to know how to tie the knot.

                So he comes to me, the Mate, to help. I talk with both scouts and listen. The first Scout feels he has had his experience and credentials insulted by the second scout contradicting him. The Mate asks the first scout to show him the knot in question.

                It becomes evident that the first scout dispite his credentials is not teaching the information cotrrectly, and that the second scout offered the Handbook to help show the correct and safe method.

                I would explain to the scout in the middle that it is important for the job to be done correctly and safely that it is best to follow the handbook. I explain to the first Sea Scout that he needs to refresh his skill and follow the manual when teaching new Scouts, and I suggest that he reconsider how he treated the Second Scout and take what actions he feels best reflects the values of Scouting.

                I thank the Second Scout for his concern for the safety of the Ship and his fellow scouts, and ask that he work with the Boatswain to lead a Marlin Spike training at an upcoming meeting.


                I guess the more inportant question is "how would you handle it" Eamonn? Would you start by asking the entire ship what you should do?




                Comment


                • #9
                  "I guess the more important question is "how would you handle it" Eamonn? Would you start by asking the entire ship what you should do? "
                  If two Sea Scouts were continually picking on each other and kept at it after being asked not to. This would be a matter for the Quarterdeck.
                  Depending on what they wanted to do? It very well might end up with the Ship's Committee becoming involved.
                  Sadly we don't have Quarterdeck's, Ship's Committees or the like available in this setting.
                  Of course the big difference is that in our youth programs we hope to prepare young people to make ethical and moral choices over their lifetimes by instilling in them the values of the Scout Oath and Law.
                  This leads me to believe that those who are doing the preparations are doing their best to be up to the task.
                  As I'm sure you have noticed I have intentionally not posted any names.
                  My thinking being "If the cap fits..."

                  I do appreciate your pointing out that I did miss a good and valid point when I was weighing up my options.
                  This was a mistake on my part.
                  Other forum members have sent me PM's with what seem to me at first glance very good ideas.
                  My hope is that within the next day or so, too answer all of these.
                  Some PM's have said that the Moderator Team is not active enough and needs to take a firmer hand.
                  At this time I do tend to agree with that.
                  The bad thing is that when the moderators do this type of thing there seems to be a big hue and cry over it. Some forum members see this type of thing as a form of censorship.
                  A few of the moderators have suggested that we need more guidelines /rules in the forum. As you know I'm not a great lover of all these rules and that sort of thing. I believe that the Oath and Law should be able to cover all of our needs.
                  Someone asked me why I just didn't go ahead and deal with this?
                  I do have to admit that I know one of these persons and do have a history of agreeing with him.
                  I really was /am trying not to show any partiality. While maybe not tending to agree with the other person as often.
                  Eamonn

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Just in case his post was missed in the Scout Law thread I share it with you here.

                    http://www.scouter.com/forums/viewThread.asp?threadID=213332#id_213458

                    Eamonn
                    Even if it went to the committee or the Quarterdeck should they not first talk privately with the individuals to try and understand them and the situation better?

                    Should the committee not be concerned about the scouts being taught the right information for their safety and the correct operation of the boat.

                    I am not sure that more actions from moderators are needed, what I think is needed is for them to be moderate.

                    I realize that the second scout in the scenario embarrassed the first by showing that the correct information was different then then the personal habits of the first scout. But that does not make the second scout or the handbook wrong. It means that the first scout was endangering the boat and its crew and passengers.

                    Had the first Scout known the skill and the task then the second scout would have been very proud of him.

                    Have you considered why there are so few people active onn the forum who openly use and support the methods of scouting?

                    Read Docs post that I linked to at the top.

                    I have PM'd you what I will do about this situation.


                    (This message has been edited by Bob White)

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Eamonn, never thought I'd see this on a Scouting forum. I suggest telling both members to put each other on ignore, with a long timeout or ban on whomever doesn't comply.

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                      • #12
                        Help me out here Chug. I have had evmori on ignore for several weeks, Check his posts and tell me if you think it changed the tone of any of his posts? I will bet it hasn't.

                        Did it change my posts? Before I posted about the content of BSA program training and resources and they address specific comments or questions, I still do. No changes,

                        Do you honestly believe that if BadenP could not see my posts that he would stop posting about me? If I could not see his posts would the content of the BSA training and resources somehow change?







                        Comment


                        • #13
                          (This message has been edited by a staff member.)

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                          • #14
                            WOW!

                            All I can say is that I sure hope you are not teaching those old sayings to the young children entrusted to your care.

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                            • #15
                              Some relevant quotes:

                              * All I did that was different from you is read.

                              * Whether on-line or in a book it still has to be read, and many posters here take a dim view of people who read.

                              * As far as scouting goes you can choose to understand and follow the program or choose not to. If our worlds are all that different Barry it is probably just that we made different choices.

                              * Have you considered why there are so few people active onn the forum who openly use and support the methods of scouting?

                              * I am curious, How many posters would stop a stranger on the street and ask for an opinion on how they should lead a scout program? Anyone? And yet some of you do that all the time on the Internet.

                              * The program has always relied on the personal integrity of the volunteers and the people who select them to do the right thing. (posted in a way to imply that other posters or anyone who disagreed lacked personal integrity).

                              * It was nice to have another person on the site who cared enough about the program to try to learn and follow it. (Implyin' everyone else doesn't care about da program)

                              and those are barely da tip of the iceberg. Most weren't even directed at his usual tit-for-tat "associates."

                              -------

                              In readin' all these things, I tend to dismiss 'em as someone who hasn't learned how to communicate well on-line, or how to separate critiquing a position from attackin' a person. It's OK, we all sometimes sit around campfires with fellow scouters who have quirks and whatnot. And I have more than my share, and have been mis-read for miscommunicatin' plenty!

                              But I'm thinkin' more that these are the poster's real feelings, eh? That he actually doesn't value any of the contributions of the many scouters here, and really intends to impugn our integrity, our work with kids, or our ability to read. Don't know if I'm right about that, hope I'm not. But I can understand someone who would think that.

                              I do know that I've learned a lot from a number of folks here, eh? Good ideas, good perspective that have helped me in my work on behalf of scoutin'. Eagledad, Lisabob, jblake, scoutldr, Eamonn, Oak Tree and many, many others. Yeh all know who yeh are! (need a smillie that does a Scout Salute!). Thing is, every one of 'em at some point has gotten both barrels from this fellow. Either that or been dissed a bit for not bein' able to read or not havin' integrity to do what he feels BSA recommends. And we haven't seen some of 'em in a bit, eh?

                              For my part, I can't figure why someone who doesn't value input from others here, who tends to belittle da members of the community here, chooses to spend time here, eh? At best it's pigeon management (swoopin' in and droppin' bird poop on folks), at worst it's just trollin'. Yah, yah, we also have Merlyn, of course, but we keep him around as our pet troll.

                              Seems to me if it was a unit I was workin' with, I'd sit with the adult and ask him or her why they were here? If they don't value da perspective of most of the members, and they don't even value internet forums in general ("opinions of 2000 people" and all that)? Forums, like scout units, have certain goals and character. If yeh don't buy into the goals, and yeh can't stand da characters, yeh need to find somewhere else to spend your time.

                              But I might be wrong. I personally believe that every poster here is here because they care about kids and about scouting. I believe they all make use of and openly support the methods of scoutin', and are able to read, and have integrity. Still want to believe it of this fellow. Sometimes folks are just in da wrong place or wrong position, though, eh? Best to find 'em a spot where they can feel more at home, and be more productive. Makes 'em more positive and cheerful about this scoutin' stuff too, eh?!

                              Beavah(This message has been edited by Beavah)

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