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High on Lullabies

Forum Moderation and Regulation Poll

Forum Moderation and Regulation Poll  

197 members have voted

  1. 1. Are you happy with the overall quality of service provided by the Staff?

    • Yes
      152
    • No
      21
    • I Don't Know
      24
  2. 2. How happy are you with the quality of moderation on the forum? (10 = Perfect, 1 = You never get anything right!)

    • 10
      28
    • 9
      58
    • 8
      50
    • 7
      26
    • 6
      8
    • 5
      10
    • 4
      9
    • 3
      5
    • 2
      2
    • 1
      1
  3. 3. How do you feel about the level of regulation on the forum?

    • Very over-regulated
      21
    • Over-regulated
      53
    • About right
      118
    • Under-regulated
      4
    • Very under-regulated
      1


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Wishing
I'm always more than happy to edit anything anyone needs help with for them though, even as minute as a word change or a spelling error, they've only to ask. :yes:

Not that it's too big a deal to me now (since I have instant editing capabilities, at least, and rarely see things I need to change too much after I post), but this is good to know. Because I always felt, before I could edit, as though I should only ask a mod to edit something of mine if it was important to the meaning or whathaveyou (liike a missing or wrong word, for exacmple). And so I tended to obsess over my inability to edit, because I'm a perfectionist, and so simple typos would drive me nuts. Knowing that mods (or, at the very least, a mod; I don't presume that you speak for everyone) are willing to change stupid stuff would have definitely made me less antsy about wondering when I'd get editing priveledges. :kiss1:

Goodness, well in that case I will add my willingness to edit anything for anybody as well (in the areas where I have access). I know how annoying those things can be!

SneezeChick, you just described me there! :bleh: . I have to say I'm terrible when it comes to editing my posts for typos or missed words...I'm too much of a perfectionist, always have been (sorry guys!) but I assure you that's all I do edit them for (as I usually put a lot of thought into how I word things, especially long replies before I actually post them).

And on the subject of forum moderation and regulation, I would say things are just about right as they are. I know it might seem a little strict at times, but the important thing to remember is that the rules and validation process are there for a reason....to protect us. I feel certain as has already been pointed out, that they play a big part in making this community the wonderful place it is, and I'm very happy to be a part of that. Thank you to all the staff for your hard work and effort...it's not an easy job and doesn't get much thanks, but you are all appreciated very much :kissblow:.

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Hankysneeze

This place is perfect! Most would be lost without it thanks for all the hard work put in by you guys and gals :D

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realsneezes

Wow...such lively discussion and participation...I guess that is what the forum is really all about. I rarely put in my two cents under this username but I feel like I should comment. I have listen to a variety of opinions and views and I do understand the frustration of both sides from administration to members. I personally don't think the site is too restricted and thats only because I know the seriousness of what really could happen if wasn't as governed as it should. I am a member of the media...I have access to a number of radio stations, television stations, internet sites etc..and I am also a person that has the fetish. Of everybody on this forum...I am probably one of the few that actually talks to everyday people about sneeze fetish in general. I have had discussions about it on talk shows (radio) and televsion interviews (I was the host). I didn't ever let on that I was a actual member of the community but I was fascinated by how the general public views us. I have NEVER acknowledge this forum for fear that it would be flooded with people who are curious and just want to make fun of us. I'm sure there are a number of people who "stumble" on to the site and look all through the posts etc.. I am for one grateful that certain aspects of the site or off-limited to people. As alot of people already know I make videos and that has allowed me alot of access to people's opinions both with the fetish and without. The general public for the most part doesn't even know what a "sneeze-fetish is" trust me. Foot fetish is kinda known but still viewed as weird..but tolerable. Sneeze is viewed as just plain perverted with the general public. First..in the public's eys..sneezing is not cute...the person doesn't look beautiful and it's a annoying. Secondly, allergies, colds, etc...make the person feel terrible so that is annoying...so to associate that with "attractiveness" or "a turn-on" is actually a problem. People don't just understand and I remember actually telling one of my friends about the fetish...she was cool and she was nice about it but she was just respectful and that was it. I noticed that if she sneezed she would look at me funny...and a little nervous. I of course played it off..(she had a wonderful sneeze) but things weren't quite the same. She viewed me a little different.

Now I am saying this (and please forgive me for going on this rabbit trail) because I think the sneeze fetish forum is doing a great job. I myself am not granted full access and I'm not complaining one bit. It's unforunate that I can't post and contribute like I want (I would LOVE to..trust me) but I really have a very busy schedule with what I do. Also I don't want members to think that I'm just trying to advertise my businees on here. I'm sure there are plenty of people who become members simply to have access to the material and that is not what the forum was created for. By the same token there are people who are in business and only want to advertise it on here..and that is also not what the forum was created for.

Guys (and girls) there are sooooo many of us (sneeze fetish, noseblowing, tissue, even nose fetish people) in the world. I get requests and emails from people all over the world. We come in all countries, languages, races etc...and the biggest fear that I see everywhere is the fear of being discovered by a person that doesn't have the fetish. If you don't have the fetish then you can't understand what we like about it, what we find attractive etc..That is why this site is so important. At least here..we can all let "our hair down". We can be ourselves..we can communicate with people who are US! Even though the restrictions might be a irritant to some of us and we might quibble among ourselves...look at like this...this forum has been around for a number of years with little problems and has never been shut down so that has to say something about the fact that they are doing something right.

I would personally like to say thanks to the staff, members and those that participate (and even those that don't) and being part of a community that has offered so much to all of us and a outlet. The SF members that "get it" and not here to be sharks or just milk the community for their own personal desires are the best people to know. I have made several great friends in the community and they are friendships I cherish.

SFF keep up the great work and thanks for the opportunity to express myself!

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count tiszula

realsneezes, if you are the same realsneezes who used to use that name on YouTube and posted clips you had made for one of those things we can't mention here, you may be interested in the fact that a new Commercial group has been created [see the Announcement in the announcements section]; if you email your details to the staff, you should be given access to the Trading Post, and there you can publicize your unmentionable thing, , and everyone can post requests, critiques,and discussions, and everyone will benefit; in fact a new Golden Age will occur.....

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realsneezes
realsneezes, if you are the same realsneezes who used to use that name on YouTube and posted clips you had made for one of those things we can't mention here, you may be interested in the fact that a new Commercial group has been created [see the Announcement in the announcements section]; if you email your details to the staff, you should be given access to the Trading Post, and there you can publicize your unmentionable thing, , and everyone can post requests, critiques,and discussions, and everyone will benefit; in fact a new Golden Age will occur.....

LOL! Yea..I noticed that sometime ago..but I have been real hesitant about doing that because I didn't want the forum and members to just think that I am here JUST to promote

my store. That is so cheezy! I have several of my friends and members tell me I should but I can honestly say I have struggled with that decision. I would like to contribute some of my material (not for sale) but in the art of being a member and not necessarily for profit. The sneezing community has been very supportive and it would be great to just give back. I have a yahoo group, facebook etc..(and I promote the SFF through those forums) but being validated by the forum itself is such a big deal to me personally. I know several clipstore owners and they honestly don't understand the fetish. Some do care and some don't, and even though I get a lot of flack as well...it's still not about the "buck". I actually PAY to get girls to sneeze and trust me that could be a forum in itself! LOL! I do like the fact that I can get the feedback, critiques and discussions about that and you are right it will be a win/win for everyone! Thanks Count de tisza!

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Jukka70

On the whole, I'd have to say it's a great place to be. There's always going to be conflicts between people, especially online. It's just human nature, and it's even more intensified online. I completely agree with the strict moderating when you first become a member. If you've ever run a group/club or a forum, then you know about how easy it can be for someone to get in, and start going off, or dealing with robots and the spamming. The other piece is of course the moderation of under 18. Despite my feuds with some, I completely agree with making sure stuff is +18. I also agree that every place has to have rules. If it's complete chaos, things will fall apart despite the best efforts. With that said, below are my choices and reasons for them.

To further, the selections I made were no for the first one. A value of 7 for the second one, and over-regulated for the third one. I gave the agreements above on moderating where I think it's done right. The over-regulating vote is when discussions go for places outside this forum. When one tries to run a forum or group and expects a certain etiquette on other sites, then you enter the over-moderating. I also believe at times there's a little nitpicking going on, though this is the least of the factors for my over-regulated vote.

The value of 7 comes from the point that the forum is quite accesible, and provides many features. It's updated regularly, and the enjoyment of people hasn't faded. This is quite commendable because many of our groups (clubs way back) have pretty much died off. I think the video's have a lot to do with groups becoming a bit obsolete. The reason the score isn't higher, is because of the politics. Now as I said above there's always going to be conflicts, but when it starts turning into cliques, then that starts to affect the mood of others. The other reason why it's only a 7 is because of the ambiguous applications of rules (this is part here, and the rest for the first question). A good example is in the youtube/myspace etc section. The good thing was that it was all combined to make things more accesible. but there is another rule and it's the first posting, which everyone has to see to get further into the later postings. And that rule is to post waves, it's not a discussion area on how the videos are. Yet people continue to do it constantly and the rule isn't applied.

As for the reason of no to the first question. And the reason for the vote of no, is because there's only yes or no and I can't give it a yes. Even though there are moderators that I enjoy talking to and even friends with. The main reason is simply this, for whatever reason and it's quite common on the internet, the power of running a forum or board, etc will go to some people's heads. I also feel that not only is there a power problem with some of the moderators, but it's also obvious that some are a bit anti-gay. It seems that one of them, cracks the whip mostly at gay people. The last problem in this area is this. Once you've had it out with a moderator, regardless of who is right or wrong, you're pretty much in a heap of trouble, and are watched like a hawk, meaning that the person is just aching to catch you on something. The irony of this, is that some of the huge fights that have caused a major riff on this forum, is something that actually solves a different problem later on. The selling of videos is a prime example, and I'll just leave it at that. I personally feel if people would just stop and not jump to a conclusion that we'd all be better off. And yes this applies to me as well. And I'm getting better at it, actually caught myself the other day. The problem is that when you are a member you must do this to stay happy, but when one is a moderator, there's a bit more leeway.

Jukka

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helios

I think that in general this is a very well run forum and marked it accordingly.

The only reason that I was just off top marks is the application of the rules to things that are already fully in the public domain, for example the sneezing girl. This was all over the news and press and admittedly easy to find. Just as a matter of common sense not allowing links to this, as a specific example, or to clips from TV shows, all of which have been passed by professional censor boards in their respective jurisdictions, seems overly cautious.

Otherwise very well done

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tma

Probably shouldn't say this- because I know that the topic has been beaten to death Many times over, BUT...

I understand the "theoretical" argument for being able to link to videos/ pictures that are u18. Of course in the *outside* those things are Not inappropriate at all- therefore there is no reason to limit them.

Yes, it is "overly" cautious. But (at least in my opinion) the reasoning isn't Just to have Staff "cover their butts legally". It is about PEOPLE. Because yes this forum does provide material to members, and yes- that is All that some members use the forum for- and that is a legitamate use... However a goal is to make the forum a place that is safe and fun for members.

Obviously this forum cannot regulate what is "out there". If someone wants to say watch videos of a 9 year old think/ act sexually about that... that cannot be regulated. Just like other innocent videos of children or young people- they can be used innocently or not. However, the staff on this forum wants to as much as possible discourage adults who are over 18 from using and sharing material of people who are underage. It can lead to false accusations toward people who watch, and it can lead to predators being encouraged, which makes the forum an unsafe place.

From my point of view (realising that I am a "fuddy duddy" :yes: )- if this forum were to allow .wavs and videos of underage people (regardless of if they are members or not) it would make me Extremely uncomfortable and I wouldn't want to be here. Not that that is a reason to have or not have this.

Anyway... enough ramble.

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starpollen

I’ve been in this community since 1998 – online with this same handle on various boards and sites – and never been particularly vocal, a self-professed ‘lurker’ for over 10 years. When I finally decided to come out, to get more involved, it was very hard for me to make myself respond to posts because I naturally tend to be more an observer. I read this poll and thought about it for hours, typing my thoughts and trying to figure out exactly how I feel. This is a topic I’ve been mulling over in my head since January of 2008, and I have very mixed feelings for a few very specific reasons.

1. This is a FETISH website. “Fetish” by its very definition is something of a sexual nature. None of us would be here otherwise.

2. That being said, I take no issue with – and adamantly uphold – obeying the law. Minors are minors, period.

3. This leaves me with a dilemma I have not been able to solve: what to do with those members between the ages of 13 and 18 - 5 years that are unbelievably important because they are so formative. On the one hand, it seems more than a little hypocritical to let members under 18 onto a FETISH (read SEXUAL) website but not allow them access to sexually explicit material. On the other hand, to deny them membership at all would leave them the way many of us were in the early years before discovering this community: alone with our feelings wondering if we were freaks. This place straddles a fine line between helping people find understanding, acceptance, and support for something we don’t view as dirty or wrong, and obeying the law that aims to protect minors from sexually mature content.

4. I do believe this board is overregulated. It has not always been the case, but in the last 2 years I have felt that it has gotten tighter and tighter, and unfortunately there was a specific set of circumstances that left me feeling disrespected and hurt by a community I thought of as family. I understand the need for regulations, and – as stated above – I am highly aware that there is no simple answer to the legal problem. However in the last 2 years I have gradually spent less and less time on this board. With the increase in regulations and the physical placement of the Adult Board in such a way that it gets much less traffic - combined with my personal experience - I’ve come to think of this is the “kiddie board.” Things here feel to me like they’ve become so regulated that the 18+ material has to be hidden away, and I’ve felt more anxiety than ease when posting (ultimately leading to fewer and fewer posts). I've even had to deliberately change what I want to write in my stories so I can post them where people will actually see it.

I spoke to another member a few months ago, and used the following analogy – On this board, it feels like all the kids are gathered around the big table with their Koolaid and birthday cake and ice cream while the adults sneak away to the kitchen to discreetly sip bourbon-spiked soda from opaque plastic cups and pretend no one knows what they are doing. Once-upon-a-time on this board (and currently elsewhere online), I was able to feel like the adult I am, seated around the table with others like me in a big family-style gathering: drinking the wine and laughing while the kids sit and observe – still part of the family but not partaking in the libations until they come of age.

5. Even though I don’t feel as welcome here as I once did - like this place isn’t really “for me” anymore - I won’t leave. I’m not going to abandon it, ‘take my proverbial ball and go home.’ I feel a deep commitment to this place and some of the people here who have been important to me for so long. Like anything that matters, it takes a lot of time and a lot of hard work to get things right and I know everyone on staff here cares as much as I do about our community; they are doing everything they can to make it the best it can be. Nothing is perfect, and I am well aware that you can’t make 100% of the people happy 100% of the time. But I wish it could go back to the way it was.

These are just my personal feelings, and I am sure I am in the minority.

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Nicole

star, I think it's awesome that you took the time to come up with a post that's so well thought out. I think you put into words what a lot of other members were thinking but maybe found it difficult to express.

I'm not an old-timer like many of the members here but I'm not exactly new either - I've been here for 5 years - and I've noticed that there's been a bit of a change as well. But a few of the things you said really kind of tap into my feelings as well.

3. This leaves me with a dilemma I have not been able to solve: what to do with those members between the ages of 13 and 18 - 5 years that are unbelievably important because they are so formative. On the one hand, it seems more than a little hypocritical to let members under 18 onto a FETISH (read SEXUAL) website but not allow them access to sexually explicit material. On the other hand, to deny them membership at all would leave them the way many of us were in the early years before discovering this community: alone with our feelings wondering if we were freaks. This place straddles a fine line between helping people find understanding, acceptance, and support for something we don’t view as dirty or wrong, and obeying the law that aims to protect minors from sexually mature content.

I spoke to another member a few months ago, and used the following analogy – On this board, it feels like all the kids are gathered around the big table with their Koolaid and birthday cake and ice cream while the adults sneak away to the kitchen to discreetly sip bourbon-spiked soda from opaque plastic cups and pretend no one knows what they are doing. Once-upon-a-time on this board (and currently elsewhere online), I was able to feel like the adult I am, seated around the table with others like me in a big family-style gathering: drinking the wine and laughing while the kids sit and observe – still part of the family but not partaking in the libations until they come of age.

I've always found it so odd that we allow members as young as 13 on a board that is sexual in nature, yet we don't let them see adult content. It's really splitting hairs, isn't it? Maybe it's not, I don't know. But it's like here in America, if you're 18 you're old enough to die for your country but you can't have a beer. It just seems so silly, and it almost feels like some lawmaker is standing in a corner with his arms crossed, nose up in the air, saying, "That's just how it is." But there's not really a GREAT reason, though you can come up with plenty of OKAY reasons. Either lower the drinking age or push up the warring age. Probably not a great analogy, but it's really what it feels like to me.

But with that all said, I don't feel all that strongly about it...but probably because it doesn't affect me. Which is a bit selfish.

Edited by Nicole

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Kiwifruit

In regards to the "no under 18 material allowed at all" mini-discussion taking place - I do find it kind of strange that we're not allowed to post clips of people between 13 and 18 on the Youth Board. I know that you can't really regulate who goes in there as people could quite easily create false underage accounts and so on, but given that it's not really porn that the government would have concerns with (at least I don't think so?) I don't see the problem there :/ We can write about underaged people, we can draw them (I think xD) and we're even allowed to post clips to underaged voice actors sneezing...IF it's animated. Or so I was told. But then, if I was to animate something and do a wav for it myself, I wouldn't be allowed to post it anyway. Not even on the Youth Board. But then if I was hired as a voice actor and did some show with sneezing in it, it would suddenly be okay to post. Seems a bit of a double standard to me. Either ban it, or don't.

I personally find the you-have-to-be-18-to-do-anything-sexual laws stupid in general anyway. A few hundred years ago, I'd probably be married with babies by now. Me and the other youth members of this forum are obviously ready for at least a bit of sexual activity, or we wouldn't be here. I'm not saying that we should be able to link to kids sneezing or that kiddie porn is okay (because it definitely isn't!), but between 13 and 18 on the Youth Board should be okay, shouldn't it? :D (And this paragraph is really badly written...:blushing: I know there are good reasons for those laws, I'm not saying they should be removed. But yeah...)

Edited by Kiwifruit

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Bubbles

Kiwifruit, I don't want to knock the thread off-topic, but how do you propose we would check the ages of unknown voice actors in obscure anime series'? I imagine it would be impossible. Most of us have jobs and lives and don't have time to sit at the internet for hours looking up unknown people who faked a sneeze for a cartoon 10 years ago! If that were to happen it would be easier to ban animated clips altogether!

I've always found it strange having minors on here too, but I suppose I have grown used to it and I don't tend to talk about fetishy things anyway, so it's not much of an issue for me.. and the adult board is there if I do need to get something naughty out of my system. I don't know how the law would view this stuff, but I like to err on the side of caution, since I don't really want the world to know about my fetish, and particularly I wouldn't want to be known to frequent a fetish forum that got banned for allowing underage material. I'd rather not risk things like that.. having a "weird" fetish is hard enough to deal with.. :D

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Heathcliff

I have to admit-I find it bizarre that we have underage members who can post observations about people they saw sneezing in class... but anyone who posts an underage Youtube video will get the wrath of God brought down upon them!

Don't get me wrong... I don't want to see underage Youtube videos. In fact, I would prefer it if only over 18 people were allowed to register on the board. It is, after all, a sexual fetish (and anyone who says it's not sexual at all for them is probably in denial).

P.S. I realise this may be an unpopular thing to say; and let me point out that the underage members I've talked to in the chatroom have all been very nice people. But I stand by my point: we make such a fuss about some issues of underage material, so why do we have to allow underage members?

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count tiszula

The suggestion is, my dear Bubbles, that you should NOT waste your valuable time checking up on strange rules that to the world outside could only suggest that we have something very bizarre to hide. Can anyone quote a law from anywhere in the world, even California, which forbids listening to a minor [not someone under the age of consent, a minor] voicing a cartoon?

Gentlemen, we must all hang together, else we shall undoubtedly all hang separately, or whatever Dr Franklin said. Another rift in our community, whether through the expulsion of minors, or of blowers, or a withdrawal by the moral majority, would be disastrous and utterly pointless. We have to put up with each other, even if some of us like buying vids of fully clothed bored girls sticking things up their noses.

I don't particularly like the idea of 14 year olds having full penetrative sex, but I can't stop it because for most people it is legal; I hate the foul scatological language used here, but I can't do anything about it. We have to put up with what is legal. We cannot use our own idiosyncratic morals to alienate our fellow fetishists.

We do not follow the laws of Saudi Arabia or North Korea; i'm not sure why, but we have chosen the laws of California, generally considered utterly barmy. Minors are minors, but there is no connection between minority and sex. Where else, [apart from Utah], is it illegal for a person of 17 to have sexual intercourse? But we are not talking about sex, we are talking about sneezing. And SNEEZING IS NOT SEX. I fully accept the rules about YouTube vids because in that instance a precautionary principle is justfied. We do not want attention drawn to us under such circumstances.

But the real world is just as likely to consider us weird because of our rules as because of our interest. To some moralisatrices it is clear that sneezing is actually worse than sex. Rather than watch Fiona Fullerton sneezing in Alice in Woderland, I should get the bus to Piccadilly and pick up a boy of 16 who can legally bugger me.

I have experienced everything described by Starpollen; but my decision was to post obscene stories elsewhere, and ultimately, not to write stories at all, since it is impossible for me to get into the mindset of the Californian, so that I can never know what is permissible there. I mean, surely it can't be true that taking a bottle of wine to a picnic and letting your 9 year old taste it is somehow wrong?

We must stick together; we must not waste time or put people off with mad rules which have no relation to reality, and we should enjoy the freedom which we have because our interest is NOT ILLEGAL!

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Heathcliff

Count... enough already. We all know sneezing is not sex. But to us it IS sexual. That's the fucking point! I know we aren't going to get investigated by the FBI over it, but the forum staff quite rightly want to protect this community.

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Lynne

Okay kids, that's enough.

THIS IS NOT THE SNAKE PIT. The general discussion area is not a soapbox - personal attacks and flaming are unacceptable here, and you've both been here long enough to know that. Should the discussion continue in this manner, the thread will be locked.

Our particular interest, and exploring it at will, are perhaps not illegal, as count has pointed out. However, the posting of any underage material is against the rules of this forum. As we've said over and over again, this is not a democracy. This website is privately owned and operated. Trying to put this as kindly as possible, if you find yourself unable to follow our rules, you are free to seek entertainment elsewhere.

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Kiwifruit

I don't think this is off topic is it, since it's talking about a rule/regulation...? If it is, I'll send myself over to the naughty corner in disgrace :rolleyes:

Kiwifruit, I don't want to knock the thread off-topic, but how do you propose we would check the ages of unknown voice actors in obscure anime series'? I imagine it would be impossible. Most of us have jobs and lives and don't have time to sit at the internet for hours looking up unknown people who faked a sneeze for a cartoon 10 years ago! If that were to happen it would be easier to ban animated clips altogether!

That's not what I'm talking about. The clips in question weren't horribly obscure, a little old, but it took me all of two minutes - at most - and a couple of Wikipedia searches to figure out that the voice actor I posted links to was underage. Two minutes. I imagine it took you about that long to type this out. Also, I went to a mod about it, with links and details, to ask. I did the work, the only time it would take the staff would be to remove them - if the rules were consistent. I understand that you have lives, but don't you think that this little lecture was a bit harsh? I've read the constitution several times, I've read every "read before posting" topic, and my understanding was that linking to underage sneezing is a big no-no without exceptions. Then I find out it's okay to post in some cases. Forgive me for being confused :D

Also, I'm not proposing anything; this thread is asking for our opinions, so I'm just giving my opinion that a couple of rules are a little strange. As you can see from my first post in this thread, I think the general moderation of this forum is generally very good and I'm very pleased with it overall.

Edited by Kiwifruit

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Bubbles
I don't think this is off topic is it, since it's talking about a rule/regulation...? If it is, I'll send myself over to the naughty corner in disgrace :lol:
Kiwifruit, I don't want to knock the thread off-topic, but how do you propose we would check the ages of unknown voice actors in obscure anime series'? I imagine it would be impossible. Most of us have jobs and lives and don't have time to sit at the internet for hours looking up unknown people who faked a sneeze for a cartoon 10 years ago! If that were to happen it would be easier to ban animated clips altogether!

That's not what I'm talking about. The clips in question weren't horribly obscure, a little old, but it took me all of two minutes - at most - and a couple of Wikipedia searches to figure out that the voice actor I posted links to was underage. Two minutes. I imagine it took you about that long to type this out. Also, I went to a mod about it, with links and details, to ask. I did the work, the only time it would take the staff would be to remove them - if the rules were consistent. I understand that you have lives, but don't you think that this little lecture was a bit harsh? I've read the constitution several times, I've read every "read before posting" topic, and my understanding was that linking to underage sneezing is a big no-no without exceptions. Then I find out it's okay to post in some cases. Forgive me for being confused :innocent:

Also, I'm not proposing anything; this thread is asking for our opinions, so I'm just giving my opinion that a couple of rules are a little strange. As you can see from my first post in this thread, I think the general moderation of this forum is generally very good and I'm very pleased with it overall.

Kiwi, I'm aware of the situation as it was discussed at length by the mods and admins at the time, but I'm not aware of the specific clips that were reported. What I posted wasn't a lecture.. it was only, as you also state your post is, asking a question or opinion to see if you could think of a way we could moderate these clips without having to spend a long time looking for voice actors who probably never became famous and likely don't have any information about themselves on the internet in many cases. Maybe my tone of voice comes across wrongly on typed messages! :drool: If we moderate one clip in that way, we would have to do it for all of them, including all kinds of obscure anime and cartoons, and the only easy way around that would be to ban animated clips altogether, in my opinion. In the discussion, I was of the opinion that the clips should be removed, but the overall position of the staff is that things like that can remain, and I believe there will soon be a post here clarifying everything relating to media and what is and isn't allowed. Unfortunately we sometimes have to accept and abide by rules that we don't always fully agree with :lol:

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High on Lullabies

Okay, seems this thread has come to life again, excellent. Debate and opinions is what we made it for :laugh: As Lynne says it is important to remember this is not the Snake Pit. We didn't put this thread in the Pit because: 1) We wanted everyone to be able to contribute and 'Validating' and 'Pending' members can't view/post in The Pit and 2) We didn't want it to descend into name-calling, flaming, personal attacks, etc. That's not a debate, that's the playground.

I know a lot of posts have been made in the last 12 hours or so, but I'll try and answer some of the points as best I can where I think they need a response. Below are some explanations of what I think is the logic behind things being the way they are right now.

The presence of U-18 members

U-18's have always been allowed on the forum, indeed until the Constitution was re-written there was no age limit at all on joining the forum! We now don't allow members under the age of 13. First, many of our U-18 members are very valuable members of this community who have contributed a huge amount to it. Plus there are those who joined when they were under 18 (Prodigy, for example) who are now adults, who if we had denied them access when they first tried to join, probably would have never come back. This isn't a justification for the policy, it's just a statement of fact that we'd be losing a major part of the community if we were to raise the minimum age for membership to 18. For the record we currently have 209 members between the ages of 13 and 17, that's more than 10% of the current membership (1922).

To deny them membership at all would leave them the way many of us were in the early years before discovering this community: alone with our feelings wondering if we were freaks. This place straddles a fine line between helping people find understanding, acceptance, and support for something we don’t view as dirty or wrong, and obeying the law that aims to protect minors from sexually mature content.

Starpollen has said it as well as I could. This is the main reason I feel U-18 members should be allowed here. The ages from 13-18 are generally the time when children start becoming adults as far as sexual stuff is concerned. This is not meant to be a catch-all and everyone develops at different rates, but we have to draw the line somewhere and the Staff are all happy with 13 as an appropriate minimum age from a moral perspective. U-18's will be having these thoughts, feelings and questions of themselves whether we like it or not, and whether we think it's appropriate or not. We are a rare breed, and the chances of an U-18 finding another fetishist they could talk to without the help of a community such as this is pretty slim. The alternative, if they choose to talk rather than just stay silent, is that they talk to their friends/parents about it and are potentially met with revulsion and rejection. That's going to have a terrible effect on them and we want to avoid that if at all possible.

The final point about U-18 members is the ability to police whatever rules we put into place. We have had instances of people who are 12 lying about their age in order to join. If we were to change the age limit to 18, this problem would increase exponentially, and short of asking people to prove their age through identity documents (which is a non-starter as an idea) there isn't much else we can do other than trust people to be honest with us. It is far better, from the point of view protecting our U-18 members, that we know who they are, rather than them hiding behind a false age and being left open to sharks and other more unpleasant elements.

The placement of 18+ material

The rules regarding 18+ material have never changed. U-18's weren't allowed to read it before, and they still aren't now. What has changed is how it's policed. For those who don't know, before May 2008 we had an 'honour system' whereby 18+ material was lumped in with everything else but was marked '18+' and underage members were supposed to just not read those topics. Obviously many of them will have done, but as long as they didn't post in them, there was no way of the Staff or (more importantly) anyone else, knowing they'd done so.

In early 2008 we had a spate of underage members posting in 18+ topics, resulting in a good number of warnings being handed out and the Staff having to work much harder to check all the 18+ topics for new posts and make sure none of those posts were by underage members. Therefore it was decided that all 18+ material should be moved to the Adult Board, cutting down our workload (as we were short-staffed at the time) and eliminating any chance for confusion among the U-18 members over whether they were allowed to post in these topics or not. It also eliminated any chance we could be seen to be providing sexually explicit material to minors. Those are the reasons this change was made as I see them.

If the feeling that the 18+ material here is being hidden away and few people are seeing it, is discouraging people like Starpollen and Count from posting stories, etc. The Adult Obs, Stories and Artwork board could be moved, to be part of the main Obs, Stories and Artwork board. It would still be 18+ only, but it would be in a much more prominent position. If you think this would be a good idea, I'm happy to discuss it with the rest of the Staff. The other option would be moving both the Adult Board and Youth Board out of the 'Private Boards Section', and into the 'Sneeze Fetish Boards'. Again they would still have the restrictions they currently do for entry, but they'd be more noticable.

Underage material

Much like the presence of U-18 members on the forum, this is a balancing act between allowing our U-18 members to contribute as fully as possible and making sure we don't get into any nasty legal or moral issues. The Staff have discussed this issue at length recently, based on the PM that you refer to Kiwifruit and I'll summarise the discussion as best I can here. There are a number of different types of media and it's probably best to address them seperately, because they are not all covered by the same rules, and with good reason.

Real-Life (i.e. non-animated) Video Clips

First thing to say is that video here is being defined as moving pictures and sound. Just because you've posted a .wav on Youtube with a black screen, or a set of still pictures, doesn't make it a video. Video clips involving U-18's are not permitted, whether they are commercially produced or privately produced. The Staff will check to the best of their ability whether a participant in a video is under-18. Videos will not be removed, unless there is evidence the person involved is under-18. This evidence is generally an age/date of birth in the Youtube profile, MySpace or Facebook page for privately produced videos. Or by looking up the actor/actress on Wikipedia or IMDB for commercially produced ones. Videos may also be removed if there is a Staff consensus that the person involved appears to be under-18.

Audio clips

To clarify, this includes any clips posted on Youtube with a black screen or series of still pictures, or any attempt to 'dress up' a .wav with some simple animation or similar on the screen while the recording is playing. Clips of this nature involving U-18's are not permitted. In the case of both this sort of clip, and the Real Life Video clips, they are not allowed because we believe it leaves our under-18 members vulnerable to predatory behaviour, and also because of the possible legal ramifications of making clips involving minors available for the sexual pleasure of others. I'm fully aware that a number of members feel that the possibility of getting into trouble from a legal perspective over this will not happen, and that we are too cautious. For the record, I don't believe it will happen either, but I can't be sure and given the potential consequences, I'm not willing to take the risk.

Animated clips

To clarify, this refers to commercially produced animated clips e.g. cartoons, anime, etc. Clips involving U-18's are permitted within reason. Clips of young children (under 13) and babies will be removed. Just as I can't see any reason our members should be taking interest in a real video of a baby or young child sneezing, then I can't see any reason that should differ just because the child/baby is animated. The age of the voice actor involved is irrelevant. Since I don't believe the voice actor is at all likely to be victimised or objectified as an under-18, and any authorities who may concern themselves with us would be equallly unlikely to tab an anime scene voiced by an under-18 as "sexualisation of a minor" - primarily because it's just so damned hard to discern if the voice actors are in fact underage or not. This sort of media doesn't seem to pose a problem either to the safety of our members, the legal safety of the forum, or even the general perception an outsider would have of us - which surely should be the main reasons behind our rules.

Observations and Stories

I'll include this one out of a sense of completeness. As the Constitution says:

Obs and Stories of U-18's are permitted however there must be no sexualisation of any kind.

To try and define what this means, I would think of it like this. Say one of our U-18's posted an obs about one of his/her friends at school, then someone (over 18 usually, though not necessarily) commenting 'Nice obs :rolleyes:' or similar would be perfectly appropriate, however posting 'That was so hot! I'd love to take your friend to bed with a bunch of ragweed :)' or something along those lines would not be.

The reasons behind this are:

1) There's no case I'm aware of, of anyone being prosecuted under child pornography or abuse laws, for writing something. We already don't allow any sexual content involving U-18's in obs or stories, nor do we allow members of any age to make sexual comments towards underage members. I believe that is absolutely right, but we don't need to go any further than that.

2) It would alienate a huge part of our membership.

3) If you went that far, why not go the whole hog and ban any reference to underage people in a sneezing context at all?

The line has to be drawn somewhere as to what is enforcing the rule so it achieves it's purpose and what is enforcing it for the sake of enforcing it. I think we have the balance about right at the minute.

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Nicole

HoL, I think it's really great that you took the time to write out that post and explain things. I'm sure it's greatly appreciated by many - it definitely is by me. You've helped me make sense of the minor things I referenced in my comment up above, and I can absolutely see where you guys are coming from now. Also, after reading all of this, I think that you guys are doing an excellent job at striking a balance here, which I can see is a task that can be difficult at best.

Thanks for the hard work you all do here! :)

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Enkidom

If the feeling that the 18+ material here is being hidden away and few people are seeing it, is discouraging people like Starpollen and Count from posting stories, etc. The Adult Obs, Stories and Artwork board could be moved, to be part of the main Obs, Stories and Artwork board. It would still be 18+ only, but it would be in a much more prominent position. If you think this would be a good idea, I'm happy to discuss it with the rest of the Staff. The other option would be moving both the Adult Board and Youth Board out of the 'Private Boards Section', and into the 'Sneeze Fetish Boards'. Again they would still have the restrictions they currently do for entry, but they'd be more noticable.

Thank you so much for the excellently detailed explanation! I actually think that incorporating the adult boards as subsections of the main boards, but maintaining the restrictions, is an excellent idea HoL. It is rather like Starpollen's quite splendid two room analogy, I would also suggest if you are going down the path of having adult sections in "Obs, Stories and Artwork" to also have an adult section in "General Discussion" and possibly "Related Fetishes" too, given that some members obviously (and justifiably) do feel uncomfortable discussing some personal experiences surrounding the fetish on open boards given the recent demographic shift within the community. Of course this may well be a large amount of work, in which case simply making the adult boards more prominent is a good compromise.

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Heathcliff

Okay- sorry for my very rude post above. HoL, thanks for typing this. I do appreciate you taking the time to explain everything.

However, I disagree with several points in your argument for the presence of under 18 members. As Lynne said, this is not a democracy- so I'm not expecting anything to be changed. But I would like to politely point out a few things.

...there are those who joined when they were under 18 (Prodigy, for example) who are now adults, who if we had denied them access when they first tried to join, probably would have never come back.

If the forum was adults only, most internet-active sneeze fetishists would still be drawn to it. The pull would be very strong, and I think people would understand the policy when they reached the right age. In any case- what Prodigy would or wouldn't have done is not relevant.

This isn't a justification for the policy, it's just a statement of fact that we'd be losing a major part of the community if we were to raise the minimum age for membership to 18. For the record we currently have 209 members between the ages of 13 and 17, that's more than 10% of the current membership (1922).

Lots of sexual fetish web communities probably have a big underage contingent waiting to join; but they don't let them because it's not appropriate for a sexual thing.

To deny them membership at all would leave them the way many of us were in the early years before discovering this community: alone with our feelings wondering if we were freaks. This place straddles a fine line between helping people find understanding, acceptance, and support for something we don’t view as dirty or wrong, and obeying the law that aims to protect minors from sexually mature content.

No. The fact the forum exists shows kids that they are not 'freaks' or 'dirty'. It is not an obligation to let them join. I am more worried about 14 or 15-year-olds on the forum who say they are so comfortable with their fetish that they have told all their friends. Surely the forum has taught those teenagers to be too comfortable with their fetish!

We are a rare breed, and the chances of an U-18 finding another fetishist they could talk to without the help of a community such as this is pretty slim. The alternative, if they choose to talk rather than just stay silent, is that they talk to their friends/parents about it and are potentially met with revulsion and rejection. That's going to have a terrible effect on them and we want to avoid that if at all possible.

You know as well as I do that most of us pre-internet generations grew up telling no-one about our fetishes... I certainly didn't feel such awful pressure that I had to tell my parents, and it didn't have a 'terrible effect on me'. This argument does not make sense.

Thanks for reading.

Edited by Heathcliff

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Nicole

Hmmmm...all very good points. I tend to agree with you on most. Not that I don't think the staff here is doing a good job at balancing things, as I said earlier....I know you can't please everyone so you have to do your best. But yeah...Heathcliff, I totally feel you. :)

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starpollen
If the feeling that the 18+ material here is being hidden away and few people are seeing it, is discouraging people like Starpollen and Count from posting stories, etc. The Adult Obs, Stories and Artwork board could be moved, to be part of the main Obs, Stories and Artwork board. It would still be 18+ only, but it would be in a much more prominent position. If you think this would be a good idea, I'm happy to discuss it with the rest of the Staff. The other option would be moving both the Adult Board and Youth Board out of the 'Private Boards Section', and into the 'Sneeze Fetish Boards'. Again they would still have the restrictions they currently do for entry, but they'd be more noticeable.

I can say personally that I would be very grateful if this could happen. As I stated earlier, I have every respect for the policies and the reasons behind them, but as an author I have felt some discouragement from writing and posting my 18+ material because there is so little traffic in the Adult board. Obviously it's not because we don't have 18+ members (as you said, only 10% of our members are U-18 so 90% of us could be reading if we chose... and I understand not everyone here is even into stories to begin with...) but I think the placement of it makes it difficult for people to get to easily and therefore is often "the road less travelled." I would appreciate the Adult sections of the board to be as visible/accessible on/from the main page as other areas.

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tma
In regards to the "no under 18 material allowed at all" mini-discussion taking place - I do find it kind of strange that we're not allowed to post clips of people between 13 and 18 on the Youth Board. I know that you can't really regulate who goes in there as people could quite easily create false underage accounts and so on, but given that it's not really porn that the government would have concerns with (at least I don't think so?) I don't see the problem there :/ We can write about underaged people, we can draw them (I think xD) and we're even allowed to post clips to underaged voice actors sneezing...IF it's animated. Or so I was told. But then, if I was to animate something and do a wav for it myself, I wouldn't be allowed to post it anyway. Not even on the Youth Board. But then if I was hired as a voice actor and did some show with sneezing in it, it would suddenly be okay to post. Seems a bit of a double standard to me. Either ban it, or don't.

I personally find the you-have-to-be-18-to-do-anything-sexual laws stupid in general anyway. A few hundred years ago, I'd probably be married with babies by now. Me and the other youth members of this forum are obviously ready for at least a bit of sexual activity, or we wouldn't be here. I'm not saying that we should be able to link to kids sneezing or that kiddie porn is okay (because it definitely isn't!), but between 13 and 18 on the Youth Board should be okay, shouldn't it? :wub: (And this paragraph is really badly written...:blushing: I know there are good reasons for those laws, I'm not saying they should be removed. But yeah...)

I personally see your first point as really valid. Not that I presume to speak for Staff at all- there are many members of Staff who I like quite a bit.

Also- starpollen- I see your point as well. I know that Staff in the past wrestled with the whole "What to do thing". *My* personal view (and BIG NOTE: I don't criticize the Staff for doing things as they do) is that I felt like the main attraction to the younger people who were looking into more exploring were the 18+ stories and obs. It used to be more of a "don't ask, don't tell" thing. Where we knew that under 18s were reading these items (just as we know that they watch R rated films)- but we were Very vigilant about u18s Not responding to these posts. Which *Most* u18s were completely respectful of. I sort of felt like it gave u18s less reason to lie about their age if all that they wanted to do was to read R-rated things, and I felt like it was protecting the forum. The *Biggest* priority for me was protection. I felt that if people were encourage to post their real age that it would help protect them. Rather reading things then getting into chats/relationships based on lies. *However* that being said- this was Prior to all the onslaught of Youtube stuff and I am SOO techno-unsaavy I don't know who can see what. Since I'm not the one taking the "risk" I'm not going to complain if Staff errs on side of caution (although I've never been here prior to 18, so....)

Just my thoughts, for what they are worth.

ETA: Ok... now that I've read what Staff has proposed- :rolleyes: I feel like that is a Really nice compromise.

Also... as far as how *I* acted and handled thing as U18... (well and even today)- I *totally* hear you Heath.

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