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Editorial:'s Forum and Blogs
By Jay Bennie
20th February 2008 - 08:29 pm

What to do about nastiness on's Forum?
Today at we're launching our new blog section. For some time we have been planning to do this but have brought forward the launch date largely because of recent issues arising on our Forum.

To address the unruly and at times vicious nature of some Forum postings we basically had four options... let it rip and the devil take the hindmost; business as usual with occasional light-handed moderation as our resources of time and availability permit; set limitations on the nature of debate permitted; or shut the facility down as being a bad look for all concerned. We rigorously debated all four options and decided on... option five.

Our Forum will stay live and continue to be moderated lightly, but we reserve the right to biff out anyone who is too often creating an unwelcome atmosphere. This policy in effect acknowledges that internet forums and message boards are largely uncontrollable, but thankfully to some extent self-correcting, environments. We feel sorry for people who are attacked because of their naiivity, vulnerability, or because someone else gets their jollies from being an asshole. We urge those who get bullied to try to ignore the attacks and get on with constructive and entertaining discussion and debate. We urge those who see bullying taking place to step in and let the victim know he or she has friends nearby.

That's the first part of option five. The second part is the launch of our blog section. We hope that this will be a more convivial environment in which some of the thinking and articulate people in our communities can set the tone for their individual blogs. We acknowledge that even blogs can get unruly. But each blogger is an independent spirit who is welcome to moderate the content and tenor of their blog as they see fit.

Our first bloggers are David Herkt, Michael Stevens, Kitten Power and Craig Young (who has moved over from our Politics and Religion features section). We welcome approaches from others who would like to kick off and maintain a blog of direct relevance and interest to glbt New Zealanders. The subjects can be as broad or as narrow as you like.

We hope that in ways perhaps yet to be revealed our Forum and blog section come to complement each other as opportunities for LGBT New Zealanders to communicate and grow, as individuals and as members of our various communities.

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