I know, rules are rules, and we have quite a lot of them, thank you very much. But in my opinion, the moderation of these boards has been extremely inconsistent lately, and unnecessarily hostile toward genuine debate and exchanges of information--in the names of "nice" and "breezy". Let me give some examples.
First, on the Cookware board recently, an OP posted a link to a study finding a strong association between elevated levels of PFOA (used in the manufacture of nonstick cookware) and thyroid disease and cancer. There was some back-and-forth, none of it offensive. Significantly, NO ONE CLAIMED NON-STICK CAUSED anything. Someone checked the source of the link, and what looked like a dubious origin (a blogger) turned out to be studied by NIH and NHANES data. About this time, the Mods locked the thread (40 posts) with this silly comment:
"It seems like everything there is to be said on this subject has already been said, and now the conversation is just going in circles, and growing increasingly unfriendly. We're going to lock it now."
Second, I recently started a thread on the Greater Seattle board entitled something like: "Secret Places Kept Secret?" (I say "like" because it was immediately torn completely down without explanation.) In that OP, I asked if anyone was like me, had a secret favorite restaurant that they do *not* post about in order to better keep it accessible to him/herself. Interesting topic, right? Poof!
Third, also on the Seattle board recently, someone asked about a good place to find bagels. There ensued a good discussion the type of which (e.g., Philly Cheesesteaks, conch fritters, foie gras, ad nauseum) invariably invites comparisons with bagels found elsewhere. The Mods' response? A stern warning:
"This Greater Seattle board is narrowly focused on where to eat in the Seattle area. Please confine your replies to discussion of bagels in the area; general reminiscences, discussion of bagel shops elsewhere, and recipes are off topic for this board."
There are countless other examples of this overmoderation. I tried once before posting a thread here on the Site Talk, in which I proposed rules of conduct and oversight for mods, but guess what? POOF!
But hope springs eternal.... Therefore I propose a new Board, maybe called "Anything Goes", in which the mods keep their judgmental, editorial little fingers off of everything not criminal or civilly actionable. The adults can play there, and everyone else can play as usual.
What say you (and how long with this heresy last before this post is pulled down)?