Originally Posted by GreatBronco16
Hey, it was a fun thread.
What happened, from my perspective, is this.
For some period of time, there had been an increasing number of personal attacks and an increasing degree of hostility among a number of posters on the board.
Jhns was one of the main instigators, but he certainly wasn't alone. Part of it was due to the rift in opinion about Tebow. That was a huge factor. But it really went further back than that - really to the point when McDaniels replaced Shanahan.
We'd let things slide a long, long time.
The Manning thread brought all this stuff to the fore once again.
My initial feeling was to impose as minimal amount of control as possible, first by politely telling people to knock it off. I was ignored, partially because some people did not realize I was a moderator. Others probably missed my initial warning because the thread was so long and moving so fast.
I then decided to impose the minimum sanction possible - "thread bans." Instead of banning people outright, I told them to get out of the thread. This was a mistake, for several reasons. It didn't work. Again, some people didn't realize I was a moderator. Others didn't think I was serious. Others couldn't comprehend the notion of a "thread ban," having never encountered such a beast in their entire time on the internet. I should never have taken that intermediate step. Instead, I should have just issued lesser bans right from the start - one day to one week each, I imagine, would have been sufficient.
Once I started banning people, some posters saw it as me taking sides in the underlying disputes, which I really didn't give a darn about. So we had some deliberate defiance and protests that also drew bans, and I kept escalating the times involved, which just poured more flames on the fire.
TJ did NOT step in. On the contrary, after thinking things over for a bit, and considering feedback from other posters in PMs and the like, I suggested to him that he might want to reduce or lift some of the bans - which he did in a number of cases.
What I learned from that experience was to never use thread bans again.
My apologies to those I offended, except for the ones who deserved it, whoever they were, which I can't even remember now.