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PostPosted: Mon Feb 09, 2009 9:29 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 7:10 pm
Posts: 8203
Location: Buckinghamshire
I have started this thread because I would like to separate out the discussion about Moderation of the Tiffin thread from the main debate on the current financial situation at the school. I don’t feel that it is particularly helpful to any of us to have the two discussions going on simultaneously, and least of all for Tiffin parents.

Southby wrote:
I apologise to the Forum if I have caused offence with my previous post.

I don’t feel that there is a need for you to apologise Southby. You have posted some very valuable information, and from a perspective that is, at least at present on the Forum, unique on the subject of Tiffin.

Feelings have been running high on Tiffin ever since the announcement of the “voluntaryâ€


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 10, 2009 10:05 am 
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Posts: 62
Sally-Anne

I did object to the moderating yesterday because I thought it unfair.

My post and the telling off I got from the moderator are shown below so other posters can see what we are talking about. They are shown in full.

LewArcher wrote

Nobody makes a person become a school governor other than themselves.

When they become one they take on certain responsibilities.

At a school like Tiffin - a Voluntary Aided Grammar School - their is an additional responsibility that of demonstrating that the school is well run even though it falls outside the direct control of the local authority.

It seems quite clear to me that several governors will have to resign once the audit report becomes available and I would go further and say that their reluctance not to go ahead of its publication simply provides further evidence of their failure to take responsibility for a mess they either willingly participated in or facilitated through neglect.

I do not say they all need to go but certainly members of the Finance Committee have a particular responsibility that needs to be acknowledged.


Bewildered (Moderator)
Replied

Lewarcher, those are sweeping generalisations and offensive.

you have no evidence that this is the case, about Tiffin governors.

Please avoid this sort of comment


My original post was an opinion informed by what is already in the public domain. It followed a series of comments by other posters on the role of Governors including Bewildered. I suspect the offending phrase was:

[b]“a mess they either willingly participated in or facilitated through neglect.â€


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 10, 2009 1:24 pm 
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Location: london
Sally-Anne

Sorry, but what is trolling? :oops: :oops:

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mad?


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 10, 2009 1:45 pm 
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Location: Watford, Herts
mad? wrote:
Sorry, but what is trolling? :oops: :oops:

It's net-speak for winding people up just to get a reaction. Many forums have a saying "Do not feed the troll", meaning "don't respond to such posts, it only encourages them".


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 10, 2009 2:05 pm 
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Joined: Thu May 01, 2008 5:27 pm
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Location: london
Thanks, I feel very old!

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 10, 2009 2:27 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 7:10 pm
Posts: 8203
Location: Buckinghamshire
Hi Mad?

Yes, WP's definition is correct - sorry to use "net speak" without explaining myself. "Trolls" are people who post highly offensive pictures or remarks simply to incite a reaction. Forums that have a lot of trolling can become completely corrupted by it, and I know of one very large Forum that was closed down because of it.

Thankfully we have had very, very few of them on this site over the years, and there are not many traces of them left because we tend to completely remove obvious "trolling" posts, rather than allow them to stay on the Forum.


Hi Lewarcher

I hope to have time to reply to you more fully later this evening, so please do not think that I am ignoring your post.

Sally-Anne


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 10, 2009 4:07 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jan 15, 2009 4:23 pm
Posts: 62
No of course not.

I should also have said previously that if you feel I have said anything offensive to a specific individual you should feel free to delete it.

Up to now, with the honorable exception of YoYo123 and my comment on the schooling of the sons and daughters of the greedy and power hungry, moderators have only deleted my comments on moderations.

It seems odd to me therefore that a whole new thread has been devoted to my failings when all I did was dispute a telling off for a posting that remains viewable to all.


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 10, 2009 9:51 pm 
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Location: Buckinghamshire
Hi lewarcher

First of all, please may I say that this thread is not directed at you quite as personally as it may seem?

As I mentioned above, there have been four separate threads about Tiffin that have been locked, 3 of them a long time before you registered on the Forum. It has been a volatile situation for a long time and by starting this thread my hope is that other Tiffin parents may read it before they post, and it could help to defuse the situation a little.

Perhaps unfortunately, as you are one of the main protagonists on the current Tiffin thread, your quotes (and Southby's) have been used to demonstrate the point. However, to answer the points you make in your first post.

lewarcher wrote:
I did object to the moderating yesterday because I thought it unfair.

When anyone registers for this Forum, they accept the following statement:

You agree that the webmaster, administrator and moderators of this forum have the right to remove, edit, move or close any topic at any time should they see fit.

Despite that statement, and unlike some Forums, we do offer a right of reply in most cases, "trolls" being the exception. We much prefer to use PMs to discuss the reasons we have moderated a post. Unfortunately our experience with Tiffin posts - for whatever reason - is that we have PMed people and they have not replied to us. Also, many of the posters are new members, who do not know how to retrieve PMs. That leaves us with very little choice than to communicate our reasons for moderating on the main Forum.

Regarding the difference between your posts and Southby's posts, I can only try to amplify what I said earlier. Where you state that you are "reporting an opinion that is in the public domain", the question the Mods (and the lawyers) have to ask is: "Where is it in the public domain?" If it has been published elsewhere (such as in a local newspaper) then there is unlikely to be an issue with repeating it here. However, if the opinion is merely "one that has changed hands frequently among Tiffin parents", then it is in potentially dangerous territory if you are the first person to put it in writing.

By contrast, Southby adds the magic word "presumably" to his statement, rather than using unequivocal and absolute statements such as: "... a mess they either willingly participated in or facilitated through neglect."

Southby has allowed for an element of doubt. Unfortunately, your statement gives less room for manouevre.

I recently advised a very new Forum member, after some troublesome replies to her initial posts, that judicious use of phrases such as: "perhaps", "in my opinion", "it could be that" will go a long way to appease other members. I am afraid that the same is even more true of libel lawyers.

Please use the Forum to impart information - as you have done so well, but please also exercise very careful judgement in the wording you use for named individuals. There have been occasions when a post on this Forum has resulted in a call from a libel lawyer within less than an hour.

lewarcher wrote:
I also suffered moderation by 5 moderators yesterday, mainly for complaining about the above moderation. I think this does raise issues of consistency.


I make it 3 Mods publicly, so could we split the difference on that? Your first post on the thread yesterday was made at 11.56am, and your last at 9.16pm. None of the Moderators - all volunteers with jobs and families - can possibly be here for the full 9 hours that would provide absolute consistency.

We do try to ensure that one person takes "ownership" of specific difficulties, but even then, problematic posts have to be moderated by whoever is available at the time.

Once again, I would like to point out that you are not the sole target of this thread lewarcher. There have been many Tiffin parents before you who have fallen foul of the Mods. Some have even vanished permanently from the Forum, because they were "trolling".

Your posts have been almost entirely constructive, and as informative as Southby's. I hope that you will continue to provide information and participate in the debate, because I feel that - slowly - we are beginning to find out what has happened at the school.

As a footnote, I would ask all posters about Tiffin to read and absorb the content of this thread.

Sally-Anne


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 11, 2009 10:32 am 
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Joined: Thu Jan 15, 2009 4:23 pm
Posts: 62
YoYo123
Bewildered
WP
Etienne
And an tome from your good self.

Anyway thanks for giving it so much thought, admirable really!

Presumably you accept the situation is a mess?

The general tone of tiffin posts has been to attack Sean Heslop.
I have taken a different view and called the Governors role into question.
I think this has added balance.

Whatever the cause I would seriously doubt whether the Local Authority will trust all the current governors to steer the school back to financial stability.

The reason I say this is because, by their own admission, they have been unwilling to take such action previously. Presumably they have seen the Voluntary Contribution as a get out clause. In my view, by doing so, they misunderstand the role of state grammar schools and their right to exist.

However I should say that in doing so they have probably been doing the bidding of vociferous minority of parents - the PTA did after all vote for an increased contribution. The PTAs attitude appears to be that Tiffin is not really a state school. In my view this is the root of the entire problem.


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 11, 2009 11:09 am 
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Joined: Mon Jan 26, 2009 9:34 pm
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Hi, lewarcher: after reading Sally Anne's sincere and friendly post , I assumed that your anger towords the Mods of this forum would vanish. However, it is sad to find that you just beyond "comforting". :oops:

I just hope you feel "happy" and enjoy posting here later.


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