Our Moderation Policy
Our 33 rules below can be summarized to this: 1) be polite and respectful, 2) keep it clean, and 3) no reference of any kind to politics. Easy-peasy!
All the rules and everything on this page pertains to posting on any FishDuck Oregon Sports Community and Our Beloved Ducks forum (OBD) websites.
Our Process: When a moderator sees a post that violates our policy, or is even on the line–he/she will “hide” the post from view. It is not deleted yet, as action will be taken by Mr. FishDuck that evening after work. At that point the post could be approved and “appear” again, or it could first be edited and then “appear,” or it will be deleted. These decisions are based upon our rules below as interpreted by the moderators and Mr. FishDuck.
Take note that we do give people two strikes or violations as they adjust to our non-aggression environment. Violate the rules a third time and you are blacklisted/banned, as this is what the 99.50% who post superb comments want. The Ban could be for a week or two, months or permanent; after you have been banned and allowed to return–there is no slack given or strikes. Violate again, and you are banned again.
For the half of 1% out there who do not have impulse-control … as you write your comment that violates our rules, ask yourself, “is this worth getting banned over?”
OBD members….we got your back. No Trolls Allowed! (We have something incredibly special with Our Beloved Ducks forum discussions and everything below is focused on preserving it)
The Background to the Rules at the Our Beloved Ducks forum (OBD)
My Objective for Posting of Comments: I want everyone to share their thoughts on a topic and to present their facts researched, or their opinions and/or rationale laid out. I want all opinions safely expressed regardless of where you are on the wide spectrum of ideas as everyone is protected at this site from the Trolls and the nastiness that prevails on web.
The more views shared along with the facts and reasoning, then the more subsequent discussions that ensue with that more learning for all readers. The end result is that we all become more informed, reasoned and better Oregon fans. Decorum that is required and enforced encourages more posting by more people, and thus we all benefit!
If you are the kind of person that likes to “shake things up” by attacking and denigrating people, then this is not the site for you. If you are a reasoned individual who wants to learn from others while discussing topics concerning Oregon Sports in a respectful, friendly and protected environment from the Trolls, then this is the perfect website for you. Our mission is making the OBD forum a premium website for the discerning, devoted Duck fan.
Everyone is Welcome, but not Everyone Can Stay
A: A Tough Adaption Period for Everyone Who Joins as it is not easy making the transition in how you post, as you will have an adaption period of learning how to no longer be so aggressive in your words and tone written, or dismissive of those who disagree with you. Everyone on the OBD forum has had to defeat old habits and I’ve had conversations with so many that have explained their difficulties with the conversion, as it was for I. Yet we are delighted with the final result in helping to create the most unique Oregon sports community anywhere, and this flock of Ducks has become quite a special group that I am honored to be a part of.
Some cannot make the transition, as the OBD forum is not a fit for everyone, and that is what makes this community that much more valued by us all. (See also No. 40-42 below)
B: How is FishDuck and the OBD forum Different? My friends, you have noted that I use the word, “ponder” often in my writing because it best describes what I like to do with all matters related to FishDuck, and it matches the unique type of individual that enjoys the banter in our discussions. This site is a place where we like to share our thoughts and “ponder” the many ramifications and variables connected to a particular Duck-event or news. This is not a fit for everyone, but the community on this site loves to present their views and debate the way ladies and gentlemen used to in a more civilized age.
Mr. FishDuck, WHY do you have all these rules?
C: The web has become a horrible place in some quarters, and I know it well as I have been the recipient of noxious bile hurled by people on all three of the major subscription Oregon sites in the past. I hope nobody will have to deal with a couple-dozen insults in a thread (multiple times over the years!) as I have, hence my sensitivity on behalf of others is fine-tuned. The OBD forum is the escape from the real-world … where we can drift into a fun world of discussing Our Beloved Ducks, and leave the nastiness of the web behind. It is our GREEN REFUGE…
D: THIS IS NOT AN EXPERIMENT: While other sites are removing comments below their articles, (ESPN, USA Today, CNN, OregonLive, etc.) we are encouraging avid discussion at FishDuck since the summer of 2017 when the firm rules of this site began. Over 99.50% of the thousands of posts written by the regular members on this site have been polite and respectful while having great debates and disagreements, thus we know it can be done. The problem is not with all of our rules; the problem is your behaviors if your post was deleted.
All these rules do not bother the massive majority in the least as they write thousands of comments that don’t offend anyone! It is not hard to be nice, polite and respectful and the good people in the OBD forum community want the rules and want the Trolls kept out. Hence why I serve them, the OBD forum community, and why these rules have been thought out over several years and through hundreds of hours of experience.
Again … with all the time and money spent moderating posts and keeping it safe for reasonable Oregon football followers … our mission is about making the OBD forum a premium website for the discerning, devoted Duck fan!
E: It has become routine at the OBD forum where we have had nearly 3,000 posts written and I did not have to delete a single one, and that never happens on the web. Truly it is an online miracle that people have a hard time believing. We had over 150 comments/posts to an article a while back, and everyone was courteous and respectful of one another, yet we had vigorous debate on a very controversial subject. It was fun, it was great reading and it was an example of this unique community of Oregon fans at the OBD forum.
F: C’mon Charles…are you turning this into “Snowflake Central?” I would rather think of it as becoming “Civilized Central” for Oregon fans. I have been on Oregon Football message boards for over 24 years, and while all these other sites mean well and say they will clean things up–it never holds up. Since summer of 2017 there is an established a track record on this site of removing Trolls, and deleting the comments that violate our rules. I have blacklisted/banned more Oregon fans than fans of our rivals!
When all views are allowed to be written and discussed, and you consider the ones you vehemently disagree with–you may gradually have your views changed, or at minimum … you may become more measured and reasonable with your conclusions. I know I have had my views changed by pondering the thoughts of others on this site.
Note: Every rule below is there because we experienced that particular bad behavior on the FishDuck OBD forum, or Mr. FishDuck himself has experienced it.
No. 1: “If you violate any of our rules, discourage current discussion on a topic with your post and/or inhibit others from posting in the future, then you will find your post edited or deleted, and do more than twice–you will be banned from posting on the OBD forum. We are the only Oregon site that insists upon civilized discussion and has a four-year track record keeping it safe and clean; state your case as we welcome all opinions and discussions and want to learn from each other in our disagreement, but we must be polite to fellow Oregon fans.”
I’ve already lost friends over enforcing the rules, I will not make exceptions and I’m not changing the rules now for anyone. If you cannot operate as everybody else does, then you’re gone; I am here to serve the 99.50% who want a safe and peaceful Oregon Sports Community.
For those who have been on the site for a while and where you have track record with us? See No. 39 below, as that pertains to most situations because we are looking for reasons to keep good people here!
How can I possibly follow all these rules? It is simple; all our rules can be summarized to this: 1) be polite and respectful, 2) keep it clean, and 3) no reference of any kind to politics and you won’t have to worry about the rules at all as over 99.50% of those posting have learned, and do just fine.
If your post was deleted…ask yourself if …you are being judgmental of, or in an overt or even an oblique manner seeking to disparage those who have a different view than yours? Or does your post seek to inhibit others from posting in the future who disagree with you? If so—this site is not a good fit for you.
No. 2: What do you mean by my post “inhibiting” the posting of views by others? There are overt techniques for discouraging others from posting on a topic, such as belittling, insulting or taunting. There are also very subtle or oblique ways to also inhibit others from posting their views on a topic now and in the future such as shaming, sarcasm and the “straw-man” strategy. These methods are trying to discourage others from posting a view different than yours, and we will delete the posts that fall into these categories, as we want all opinions freely expressed.
No. 2a) Usually the tactic I run into the most with subtle violations is “Throwing Group-Shade,” which is a remark written to besmirch a group of people who disagree with you and you are not just throwing shade on them, but making them reluctant to post about this topic in the future for fear of your being referred to in a derogatory way. This is classic subtle inhibiting behavior that results with restricting all the possible views on a topic over time, thus we disallow its use.
No. 2b) There are Overt examples of “Throwing Group Shade” such as a poster referring to others who disagree with him as “Cristobal-Haters,” while someone on the other side of the issue will refer to the opposition as “Cristobal Suck-Ups.” It is not about the topic, but the behavior of “Throwing Group-Shade” on either side is flat-out wrong on FishDuck Community Sports sites. Whether overt of subtle, “Throwing Group-Shade” diminishes our discussion and is forbidden.
No. 3: If you have a problem with your post being edited or deleted, email me privately (firstname.lastname@example.org). We will discuss it privately, as we do not allow public debates on the website about deleted posts. Do not attempt to argue publicly about a deleted post, because your complaint post will be deleted and you risk being banned from the website. Communicate privately if you have additional thoughts, and Mr. FishDuck will respond. FishDuck and the OBD forum are a special community; we will not tolerate any deviation from the rules that have served so many thousands of readers so incredibly well for such a long period of time with less than half of 1% of all posts from the regular members ever deleted. Thanks for understanding!
No. 4: Do not attempt to assert a position of authority when disagreeing with someone or denigrate someone because they do not hold a position of authority such as, “you cannot comment on this because you don’t know as much football as I do, or as much as Coach Smith who agrees with me.” Baloney, as everyone can offer their opinion on every topic on this site! I have learned so much from “non-experts” as their perspectives (that I had previously not thought of) have often modified my position taken or even changed it in the past.
No 5: No insults or epithets, no threatening, intimidating, libeling or defaming of any individual is allowed. We do not allow Labeling, where someone calls an article or post “silly, nonsense, dumb, worthless” or any insulting term or label. If you disagree with an article or post, an example of taking issue is, “I disagree, and here is why,” and give the reasons why you disagree in a polite and respectful manner and you will have a superb ensuing discussion. (Think “Golden Rule.”)
No. 6: No denigration, disparagement or even minor belittling of another poster or writer on the site; there is no need for it. State your case and let the information or the strength of your argument win the day—but trying to denigrate a fellow Duck fan for a difference of opinion is not allowed.
a) We look at the tone of the post; does it have an aggressive tone or a bit of a bite to it? (even if tiny) If so, we delete it. Throwing shade at another member comes in many subtle forms such as, “if you understood….or if you thought this through…,” etc. and while these are benign, they are derisive and nobody wants to be on the receiving end of it. All posts can be written without an aggressive or dismissive tone.
No. 7: No Ad Hominem or personal attacks against Duck fans. Engage with the content of a post or article.
No. 8: Also forbidden is name-calling of anyone posting or those who are subjects of the articles. Calling anyone an “idiot” or “stupid,” or “dumb” or any pejorative label will result in the comment being removed and a “strike” against the member who posts it.
No. 9: Posts with back-handed compliments are deleted. It is a form of belittling and is unnecessary on this site.
No. 10: No mocking, where you laugh at, ridicule or tease in a scornful or contemptuous manner.
No. 11: No shaming of others for disagreeing with your views no matter how broad the topic or no matter how subtle the shaming appears.
No. 12: No Reference of any kind to Politics or Religion: I do not allow even a hint of politics or subtopics pertaining to politics; no names, no terms, no links, not even a word or any references pertaining to anything political. Any of the aforementioned could initiate a political discussion, and veering in that direction at all will cause a site meltdown in today’s acrimonious climate. We do not allow anything negative directed at any religion, toward anyone in the LGBT community, or toward any race, gender or ethnic group.
a) Part of the challenge I have is not only deleting any comment that pertains at all to politics, but to also remove the comments that could also instigate political discussions that could hurt our community. I have to ask myself, “will that comment initiate political discussion, even though the comment is fairly benign?”
That is why I delete posts/comments that may not be blatantly political, as I have prevent the responses and fall-out that would ensue from the comment. People here want that protection, and not just from being attacked politically, but from even having to read it.
The majority of our rules can again be summarized to this: 1) be polite and respectful, 2) keep it clean for grandchildren reading, and 3) no reference of any kind to politics.
No. 13: Trying to Sidestep the Rules with Sarcasm? Sarcasm is a subtle form of belittling, of making fun of an individual or a group for their view on a topic. It inhibits people from posting their opinion in the future, and thus is forbidden on FishDuck; we do not want any form of maligning behaviors, (no matter how minor) on FishDuck because of differences of opinion.
No. 14: No SNARKY posts or responses, as this can be a variation of sarcasm, but also can be flippantly insulting and/or a derivative of one of the violations above. It is not polite and respectful as we require on this site, thus it will be deleted.
No. 15: Do NOT try to win an argument at the OBD forum: (But you don’t understand, Mr. FishDuck…I AM RIGHT!) Yep, we all have (in the past) sought to show that our view is superior and then lord it over others later when events prove our theory or strategy correct. But we don’t taunt others later on this site, (see No. 16) as the objective on this site is not to be right. What? Many come here to argue, and there is a difference between an energy of arguing, versus a polite and spirited debate to see all the ideas, theories and opinions freely offered by everyone.
Some people put their pride on the line with what they see as what the definition of a debate is in their mind, and if they don’t think they are “winning” the written exchange, they will attempt to deflect the discussion to numerous minor tangents until they find a point they can “win” on.
No. 15a) Straw-Man arguments are NOT allowed on the OBD forum… An example was when readers were posting their thoughts about improving the offense, and a different reader posted that, “you must not like winning 12 games.” He set up the “straw-man” of the season win-total to knock over, because he did not want to engage in the offensive production discussion. Another example was when a poster was being critical of the offense and was then being accused by another reader/poster as being a “disloyal” Duck fan or a “hater” of the head coach.
The topic was the under-performing offense, but the offenders were trying to make others defend themselves on other completely different topics, or in other words, the “straw-man.” This tactic inhibits others from posting later out of fear of being mocked, accused of being disloyal etc. It is a shameful way to try to “win-an-argument” and we will not allow “straw-man” arguments on this site as we want all opinions expressed freely.
No. 15b) “Do NOT engage in the “Rabbit-Hole” tactic to try to win an argument at the OBD forum. Some will try to make you defend something oblique to the main point of the discussion–which is not relevant to the topic. That is dishonest discussion, and taking fellow Duck friends in this community down so many rabbit holes to assuage your ego does not fit our objective of being “polite and respectful” to others. State your points, and make your case as best you can as this is how we learn from each other.
Using the “Straw-Man” or “Rabbit-Hole” tactic does not fit the tone or objective of this site. If you must engage in those strategies, then you need to find another site.
Insisting on “winning the argument” is futile, as we are all going to be wrong a good bit of the time, and some of us have been humbled so many times that we are bit more open to listening to others. Again the objective at the OBD forum is not to win arguments, but to share your opinion, to see the other viewpoints, (and learn from them) and debate them all fiercely in a respectful way. Ultimately we all become wiser fans as a result!
No. 15c) Do not put YOUR OPINION ahead of this Oregon Sports Community. There are some who selfishly believe that their opinion is so important that it must be posted regardless of the rule violations or the damage to this community their post creates. It is an extreme narcissism that frequently is present in their posts in addition to the inflammatory language. This form of post will fracture a community either by the language, the polarizing content or the aggressive agitating tone.
Often when I contact these individuals they are unrepentant about the damage to the community as they cite the importance of their view, or which often has nothing to do with the Oregon Sports objective of the OBD forum. These selfish posts are not only disallowed, but the those who insist on writing them are unwelcome at the OBD forum. We have a community of nice people, and I intend to keep it that way.
No. 16: Taunting Discourages Future Posting of Comments…Taunting other readers or writers inhibits them from posting their opinion in the future because they think they’re going to be denigrated later if they’re wrong on a topic. We all are wrong at one time or another, so why would any of us post our thoughts on something if we’re going to get beat up for it later by an online bully? Thus taunting is not allowed, because the key is that we want everyone to post comments without having any downside to it, as that can create great educational discussions.
No. 17: No Needling of Writers, Readers or Management of the Site, and this one is a judgment call on the part of Mr. FishDuck. Like the “Snarky” violation above, it is hard to describe but easy to detect due to the history of the offender. It is often quite obvious that a post is written simply to offend, annoy or needle someone due to a difference of opinion and we delete these as they do not fit our “polite and respectful” profile of posts required.
No. 17a) Sometimes fans will write over-the-top opinions that appear to be in support of the Ducks, but are really meant to antagonize Oregon fans. Again–it is rare, but it is not hard to recognize the over-the-top content written because it is so stark compared the reasonable content written by other members of the community. Posts that appear to have an objective of antagonizing Oregon fans are forbidden and against our policy of being “polite and respectful.”
No. 18: Posting denigrating statements about the sites of FishDuck, Our Beloved Ducks Forum, or of Mr. FishDuck? If you have a complaint, then email email@example.com and Mr. FishDuck will engage with you. If you post your feelings in the forum–you will be deleted in a heartbeat, because after all the thousands of hours and dollars put into creating the site over the last ten years … who needs it?
No. 19: No Profanity, Keeping it Clean: Anything that is profanity is forbidden in this forum, whether it is the obvious “F,” “S” or “A” words or all the other words that the forum management recognizes as profanity. I will allow you to disguise the word by putting in symbols such as stars, exclamation points, hashtags, etc. to replace letters since it keeps it from being so blatant. Keeping it clean also refers to anything linked, the site it is linked to or anything imbedded into a post. Again, this is part of being the GREEN REFUGE from the rest of the nasty world.
If you cannot make your point without obvious profanity, then you probably shouldn’t be debating with others on this site as they will skewer you with logic.
No. 19a: “Slightly Bad Language?” C’mon Charles, lighten up! Yes, we are all big-boys and girls and obviously can handle reading the profanity and the marginally bad language, but we don’t want to even read any of it here. We get enough of it in all the other media, so let’s keep it clean for our GREEN REFUGE.
Some say this is going too far, and yes–it is extreme compared to the rest of society these days, but our bar is higher in all aspects. Enforcement of this is what our readers and forum members want, and we will for benefit of the community.
No. 20: A comment where it appears the poster is masquerading as another person is disallowed.
No. 21: Posting under several handles is not permitted.
No. 22: No Hate speech: Language that degrades others, (including public figures) on the basis of gender, race, ethnicity, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, physical characteristics or disability.
No. 23: No distributing Private information: This is material that can be considered an invasion of privacy. This includes phone numbers, e-mail addresses, URLs or other specific personal information.
No. 24: No Advertising, solicitations or spam, including a comment that is posted repeatedly within one thread or across a number of different threads.
No. 25: Copyright violations: No content from FishDuck or any other source can be reproduced in its entirety. Instead, use a small and relevant excerpt and then provide a link to the full version.
No. 26: Do not get personal in judgments of the Players or Coaches: We allow commenting about players and coaches as that is what message boards and forums are all about. Second-guessing coaches and judging player performance is what everyone does, but we must not get personal or nasty toward them. Questioning a play-call or whether a tackle should have been made (Performance-related) is fine, and give your thoughts as to why in one direction or the other.
Whether a coach should be retained or a player replaced is also fair-game because they know they are in the public sphere and that goes with the territory. Let’s discuss, but Ad Hominem attacks on them are forbidden.
No such rules with coaches at other teams, their players or their fans. Go for it and have fun!
No. 27: We do NOT post insults or denigrate other Oregon sports sites on FishDuck; if you disagree with what their official policy is or what someone has posted on one of the other sites–disagree in the same polite and respectful way we do with writers and fellow readers of this site. We do not respond to anything negative written on their site about FishDuck, the writers, or readers that post here as those other sites may not understand or agree with our policy on this site of required decorum. We do not need to respond to their maliciousness with like-for-like.
No. 28: No posting of information on FishDuck from other Oregon sites that have a subscription! If they provide a link to an article from outside their site or is a topic that is not proprietary to that site—then it is fine to post that. (Such as a topic discussed on other free sites or on Twitter and out in the public sphere) But an article that has their interviews or information gathered from their own extensive efforts? Do not post it. I will delete posts in a heartbeat that violate this policy.
No. 29: Help the Greybeard-age Readers Please: (Use Reading-Spaces!) I ask you bear with me as I (Mr. FishDuck) am a bit anal, and ask for your tolerance with me although this is for the entire community.
If we edited one of your comments/posts, and you would naturally ask…why? Pretty simple, as some of us are old-farts and it is hard on the eyes when some of us are trying to read a ton of lines of small text stacked up one after another without a break. It is difficult to keep track from one line to the next with the small text and I ask everyone to create “reading spaces” after every four sentences.
–If you have Mac….hit the “Return” button on the right side of your keyboard twice after four sentences.
–If you have PC, then hit the “Enter” button on the right side of your keyboard twice after four sentences.
If we edited your post, we did not eliminate a word; we simply created “reading spaces,” and request that you do that for the rest of us. We want all opinions, but we know from the analytics that people leave the site if they have to put too much work into reading something that has many lines of text without a break.
Or they will skip reading your post because it is too hard.
And that is why I gently ask you to create “reading spaces” to make it easier to read, and thus more discussion from others with you and your post. So please…keep offering your thoughts, and please consider making it easier on your fellow Duck fans who are Greybeard-age. My sincere thanks for your patience with me, and thank you for this small adjustment for the benefit of the community.
No. 30: Using Punctuation is being considerate to the Community, because it is hard to read a run-on sentence poorly written and/or not including punctuation. Making other people on the forum have to read a sentence two or three times to understand it is not considerate, thus we insist upon using normal punctuation when you write a post.
Yes, this is pretty nit-picky and not like anything else you have been a part of, but that is why we are a special community that is kind, respectful and polite to one-another. Make it easy on your fellow Duck fans and use good sentence structure and punctuation. We all thank you!
No. 31: Negative “only” does not work… You can be negative and yet teach others as football, like life, is negative at times. We can’t ignore it, but we can learn from it and use those events to shape our goals and dreams for the Men of Oregon. We want the all your Duck-thoughts, but not negative exclusively. Don’t dwell or obviously enjoy the negative quite so much. If you are presenting the negative joyfully–you aren’t trying very hard.
There are times of negative events such as 2016 and a bad bowl game where it is natural to be an emphatic Critical Analysis fan. There is a difference between pointing out the negative and bombarding the forum with your negative. We allow negative of course, because we need to see it, but we have some rules applied in this scenario as well.
–31A. If you are going over-the-top in writing items of extreme negative that nobody wants to read because of how downcast they are, you will be warned and it takes some impulse control.
–31B. No Venting. If you are using the forum to simply vent your frustrations–we do not need a firehose of your negative. State your point once, and not every hour; while venting may help you in healing, it destroys the atmosphere of the forum and we will not allow that. We have the community to be responsible to, so many good people who do not deserve your venting on them.
Stating the negative is fine, welcome and encouraged as that is what a forum does. The same opinion that is also extreme negative posted over-and-over is not something anyone wants to even read. The accuracy of the post is not the issue, the opinion itself is not the issue as everybody is allowed to post their opinion, the topic is not the issue, but the redundancy, the extreme redundancy of extreme negative and effectively venting on fellow Duck fans is the issue.
Negative opinions are welcome, venting is not. If you cannot tell the difference, then perhaps you need to ask yourself how many times in the last week you have posted the same opinion, that is highly negative? If it is more than three times? You are venting on us…
No. 32: No False Post “Reporting” Allowed: We want everyone to help keep an eye on posts and report inappropriate content to us as we cannot see it all fast enough. However some people will weaponize the reporting process and send me an email or flag a post as a violation when the content does not violate our rules, but simply is in opposition to the view of the person sending the email or flagging the post. It is a form of trying to inhibit others from presenting their view, a back-door attempt at suppressing an opposing opinion. All false report emails or post flagging are a violation of our rules and subject to our “three-strikes-and-you’re-out” moderation policy.
No. 33: Failure to respond to communications from the OBD Staff is grounds for a temporary banning. The site is provided for free to everyone with many thousands of dollars and hundreds of hours dedicated to it for the benefit of all the members. You can do your easy part by answering communications, as it is essential for managing the site.
No. 33a: Anything else not covered that we feel is an attempt to harm someone or suppress opposing viewpoints now or in the future will be deleted on FishDuck and the Our Beloved Ducks forum!
No. 34: Why are you censoring opinions of others? FishDuck reserves the right to allow or disallow any kind of content that doesn’t meet the standards as outlined in this set of rules. The site is under no obligation to publish every comment or post it receives. We are not aligned with the university, and thus can set our own editorial and monitoring policy.
No. 35: What about my right to free speech? The right to free speech described in the First Amendment concerns the relationship between the U.S. government and its citizens. Any private business can require certain standards of conduct. You will find that a post is removed not because of the idea or viewpoint it expresses, but because of the behavior associated with it. On this site you not only have the right to express your opinion, we want all opinions and encourage disagreement as long as you follow our rules.
No. 36: Mr. FishDuck … you simply can’t handle my opinions: Baloney. I want all opinions here as it enables us see the full spectrum of ideas and helps us modify our own views as a result. In fact, FishDuck is the only Duck website where you can safely share your full-spectrum views on Oregon Sports. If there is a problem … it is with your behaviors, and not your opinion, even if unpopular. Be polite and courteous to others and you will be reciprocated, and consequently you’ll have a tremendous experience on FishDuck.
No. 37: You have a minority view? Good, and you are quite welcome here as we need and want those views posted for everyone, because I strongly believe in the importance of a balance of views being presented. I do not want this site to become what other websites have often descended to, where “GroupThink” prevails and you are ostracized if you do not partake in the majority view. (The GroupThink link has a fascinating article about the phenomenon, along with lively and informative discussion in the comments.)
I want vigorous and civil debate, and only through such intense, but reasoned discourse do we see if an idea, or concept holds up. I have witnessed on those other sites where the majority will intimidate and bully those who disagree with them. Not here. I want all opinions, especially those that disagree with mine as I have had my mind changed by the sage participants here!
No. 38: Disagreement is ENCOURAGED, so Post Your Thoughts! I love a good argument; a great debate flushes out the good ideas and by default calls attention to the poor ones. We don’t learn from GroupThink where everyone agrees, thus we want disagreement on FishDuck! I’ve been on Oregon football message boards since 1997 and I’ve watched a ton of disagreements; heck I’ve been the cause of some disagreements and learned (finally) to discuss the ideas, but don’t make it personal.
Disagreement that comes from the great minds in this community presenting viewpoints and perspectives I had not considered have changed my mind, and I am grateful for the friends and fellow Duck fans who presented their point of view in such a graceful way. So jump in and discuss it as the Duck Water is fine!
No. 39: We all mess-up once in a while and get carried away, and when that happens with one of the “regulars,” I do ban the offender as I would anyone else. These good people usually quickly acknowledge their mistake, pledge to not do it again when their suspension ends, (and they don’t) and life goes on. Everyone sees the interaction and knows how I will not jeopardize the majority for anyone who rejects being civil with fellow Duck fans.
Nobody can skirt the rules, and not even my closest of friends, as the community and culture built is more important than any one person posting, no matter who they are.
No. 40: Mr. FishDuck, you NEED ME, as I post every day and add enormously to the conversation. You need to cut me some slack, because this site will decline if I leave.
Yes, the site would miss your comments, but no, I will not cut you or anyone slack. Follow the rules or you’re out. I would rather have fewer comments/posts of quality than watch the site degenerate into what other sites have become. The reason why ESPN, USA Today, CNN and even the Oregonian do not have comments anymore is due to the deterioration of web decorum. You need us more than we need you…
No. 41: Mr. FishDuck, I love the rules … until they apply to me! We have lost some great readers and commenters on this site who have told me on the phone or by email that they love the rules and how they protect them. Then when I must apply the same rules to them and delete their comment? They leave! One fellow actually wrote in his post, “I know I’m not supposed to write about politics in the comments, but…” And he then proceeds to write a political comment! Of course I had to delete the comment and he was torqued; it is funny how some people feel they deserve a pass due to all their great comments or posts written in the past.
I have no choice; if I yield and allow their comment, then before long the vision for the site is altered and the delicate culture is changed. Like the football team–you cannot have one set of rules for one privileged group and another set of rules for everyone else. Don’t test me, as I have remained consistent with the application of the rules and lost friends as a result. When you do have a comment deleted? Email me and let’s discuss, and please be a good sport about it!
No. 42: Mr. FishDuck has learned the hard way that if he does not act on an improper post immediately, then it will embolden others to engage in the same violation of rules. So if it appears that Mr. FishDuck is overzealous or appearing to stomp on a post immediately-it is because we don’t have any choice. If we let even one slide, then it snowballs in a negative way against all of us. What the community wants preserved is a peaceful, civil, friendly and learning atmosphere with entertaining discourse about Our Beloved Ducks!
This means reading every comment and making a judgment about the behaviors behind the comment. Since I’ve been through the wars online–I have developed a good sense for it. It can be a time-consuming, labor-intensive hassle, but it is my promise to everyone to keep this site safe in every discussion.
No. 43: Mr. FishDuck … this is really hard! Yes, it is as I have sat down a number of times and was about to tell someone how dumb their opinion was on a topic, and had to pull away from the keyboard. It can be extremely hard to follow our rules at times and some cannot, but the rewards to everyone are massive when we do. Do not temper your passion, as we want spirited discussion because only through debate can we see which ideas stand up best to logic and rational thinking. We simply have to do it in a civil way where we attack someone’s ideas, but not him or her on a personal level.
No. 44: There are more critical articles on these sites than other places-why? We are going to be critical of the coaches, and we will praise the coaches when deserved, but do so from a balanced perspective. Sometimes to get good interviews and “inside information,” the other Oregon sites will often give the current coaches a bit of a pass, as these other sites have to be nice to their sources. The result is that you rarely will get any kind of critical analysis in both directions of what is going on with the football program and other sports at Oregon, other than at FishDuck. We have true diversity of opinion and independent thinkers here.
No. 45: Mr. FishDuck…you should not be allowed to spout those views! Yes, on occasion I get that response if I am critical of something I see in the coaching. Some people take any criticism of the coach or the team as a personal affront and feel the need to defend the status quo no matter what. All are welcome to present their views at FishDuck in a polite and respectful way, but many people these days have adopted a “Cancel Culture,” where they want voices that disagree with theirs to be eliminated or canceled.
Not here, as I want all voices and opinions provided you follow our rules. It used to be that journalists and the media at large would hold leaders accountable, but some people these days wish to silence all that oppose their views and I will not let this site fall into that trendy line of thinking. In 2016, I withheld from writing any negative as I watched the season deteriorate from obvious coaching issues; after that season–I vowed to never do that again. This is an independent site and we will not always be drinking the Kool-Aid; again, we want all opinions shared across the spectrum to discuss, debate and learn from.
We are all Oregon fans, and we will call it the way we believe and that is not always pleasant. There are many definitions to what being an Oregon fan and loyalty is, and we ponder it all here, and wish to have this site open to all definitions to participate.
No. 46: “No Trolls-Allowed?” Mr. FishDuck cannot guarantee that there won’t be ANY offending comments posted from Trolls, but we can promise that we will act immediately as soon as we are aware of the violation to remove the post that breaks our rules and to Blacklist/Ban the Troll if it is done too many times.
No. 47: Why don’t you pre-screen all of the posts? Our policy is to allow posts and comments to be published, as we don’t want to delay responses to superb conversations taking place on the site, but we will act quickly to delete offending posts.
No. 48: I had a post deleted and when I went to post again, I could not. What is going on? If you write a third objectionable post, we delete it and then we Blacklist your IP address so that you cannot post again from that computer.
No. 49: What is to prevent me from going to tons of computers and posting and over-running you? We enjoy playing “Bop-a-Mole” and can delete and blacklist within 30 seconds of a comment being posted. If you want to play those games—no sweat, as it takes us a lot less effort than it will you. If you are a classy and nice person—you won’t have any problems on this site as 99% of the readers who do not, as they want the rules and the enforcement to protect them from the Trolls.
No. 50: Be Unique… People quit reading quickly if you are writing the same thing they’ve read a hundred times, thus they aren’t going to spend ten seconds reading yours again. Add something new to the discussion! Some of the readers/posters bring in stats to prove their point, and do it in an intelligent way which goes a long way toward changing minds. We want all opinions, but if you do some online research–you may make your point that much more compelling.
No. 51: Our Mission: A Commitment to the Community…Everything Mr. FishDuck has conceptualized and implemented is for enhancing and serving the wonderful Oregon Sports Community that participates at FishDuck. All the rules are designed for a discerning fan that retreats to the GREEN REFUGE that is FishDuck.
I have received hate emails condemning me as weak and wimpy because I insist upon civility, and I acknowledge that the majority of people will not fit-in with our rules and community. We are not trying to please everybody and we are fine with not being everyone’s-cup-of-tea. It takes strength and intellect to present your view without personal attacks on others, and birds-of-that-feather are the only ones I wish to spend time with. I want to read all views and have learned so much from this community.
No. 52: Honor the Community of Devoted Oregon fans! The readers of this site are special, so let’s operate on the Golden Rule with everyone and relish the time spent together. Articles on this site are read by thousands of fans, and our instructional videos have passed the TWO MILLION VIEW mark. These are coaches, players, and fans who want to learn a little and have a fun read in the process. Let’s make it better with great posts as well!
As one friend told me as he watches me managing posts on the site … “Charles, you’re like that entertaining juggler who starts with the balls, then goes to juggling knives, and then he turns the knives on fire, and, well, it is all fun for me to watch, but that’s not a position I would want to be in!”
It is a unique site that requires a unique commitment, so let’s welcome all opinions and invite everyone to join the fun. Let’s learn from each other!
Charles Fischer (Mr. FishDuck)
Publisher of FishDuck
Top Photo by Kevin Cline