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Monday's Most Active Threads

by Jeff Steele last modified Apr 02, 2024 12:04 PM

The topics with the most engagement yesterday included a service for snowflake college students promoted by a sock puppet, a professor who dislikes Elon Musk, comparing today's new hires to those of 25 years ago, and homosexuality and the Bible.

The most active thread yesterday was one that I already discussed. That thread was the one about the double murder in Fairfax County. There was a court hearing yesterday which not one, but at least two, DCUM posters attended and posted first-hand accounts. The most active thread after that one was titled, "College ‘Moms’ Service Provider" and posted in the "College and University Discussion" forum. Let me start off by saying that I hate everything about this thread. Most of all, I hate that nobody reported it within the first few posts so that I could have deleted it before it really got started (some posters did report subsequent posts but I'll get to that later). The original poster posted a link to a site that provides "moms" to provide comfort and care to kids away at college and asked how she could find such a service at Cornell University. The original post looks very much like an ad. Removing any doubt of that suspicion was the second post in the thread which was sock puppeted by the original poster. The original poster would go on to post throughout the thread promoting the service. As most people would expect, there is a huge outcry from posters who think that such a service is a terrible idea created to coddle "snowflakes". There are repeated posts urging the original poster and others like her to cut the cord and allow their children to learn independence. The original poster simply sock puppeted replies defending and justifying the service. The original poster ultimately posted at least 12 times, not once mentioning that she was the original poster and occasionally responding directly to her own posts. There was a suggestion that this was an April Fool's joke, but the service is real. Moreover, adding to the things I hate about this thread, it took a decidedly unfunny turn when a poster made a snide reply about the demographics of two universities at which the original poster — sock puppeting — claimed the service was popular. This was interpreted by other posters as an allusion to the large number of Jewish students at those schools and, hence, as anti-Semitic. This led to discussion about anti-Semitism. I did receive a report of the first post and I removed it. But, unbeknownst to me, the post had already been quoted and provoked its own discussion that I didn't notice until this morning. While readers of this blog are probably aware, I want to reiterate a few things about how the site is moderated. I can't possibly read all of the posts. As such, I probably won't know about an inappropriate post unless it is reported. I try to respond to reports quickly, but sometimes a response may be delayed. Reporting a post, but then also replying to it, will only make things more difficult for me and make the thread harder to clean up. It also risks, as in this case, that I won't notice the replies. Because I removed the inappropriate post after it was reported, it continues to exist on the site only because it was repeatedly quoted.