As many of you will be aware, there were issues with a few posts over the weekend. We are very sorry to see how upset this made a number of users, some of whom have sadly now chosen to leave the site.
By the time we were able to investigate these posts yesterday, the posts with the majority of complaints had been removed. I believe they were removed by the people who posted them, and unfortunately this means that we are not able to retrieve them to see exactly what was said. Without being able to see this, we are not able to take action against individual users on this occasion. However, we have made note of all the people who were reported on the posts, and the reasons for this, and will be keeping a particularly close eye on these people’s posts going forward.
The guidelines for using this site are very clear:
'Your participation in the site should be with respect, honesty and in the spirit of supporting and learning from your fellow users.
You are reminded that the site is not the forum to 'name and shame' or to create negative feedback on identifiable individuals. Negative references to identifiable individuals are likely to be edited or deleted.'
Unfortunately, it seems this is not being followed by everybody and we would remind you that although the community welcomes everyone, we cannot let members be made to feel uncomfortable and upset by the content or behaviour of others. Therefore, if something like this happens again, we will review the evidence and may decide to ban those breaking these guidelines, or restrict them from posting for a set period.
It seems a real shame to have to think about these actions as we really depend on you all to look after each other and keep the community going. At the NRAS office we don't have a huge number of staff and work hard to keep up with life on the NRAS community, and would appreciate your help to make it a welcoming and helpful place for others.
Going forward, as my colleague Ruth indicated yesterday on some people’s posts, as far as possible we would prefer if people do not keep referring back to the arguments that took place at the weekend, so that we can all move forward from this incident and have the forum running smoothly again as quickly as possible. If anyone wants to discuss this further it would be best if this were done off the forum, and you are welcome to private message me or one of the other admins, Ruth-NRAS or Lorraine-NRAS. Please be aware that I will be on holiday next week, so won’t be able to respond during that time, but am happy to look at any messages on my return.
In the future, if you ever see a post that you find upsetting or troubling, rather than add fuel to the fire, it would be best to let NRAS handle this, by clicking the ‘report’ button on the individual post/question/response that you are unhappy with. A large number of you did this at the weekend and we are very grateful to you for doing so, as it has helped us a lot in our understanding of what went on. Ordinarily we would respond to each individual who reported a post, but as there are so many, on this occasion we are responding to all forum users on here.
It would also be very useful for us if people take a ‘screen shot’ or copy and paste offending text to send to us, so that if this happens in the future and the posts have been deleted before we get a chance to see them, we are able to read what took place and make a sound judgement. We will also work with HealthUnlocked to see how situations like this might be handled better going forward.
I would therefore ask that all forum users take a moment to think about how they use the site. It is unfortunately all too easy to offend or be offended by written posts, which are not always meant to antagonise.
I hope this will help to draw a line under this situation and will give you some reassurance that we are taking this very seriously.
Thank you for taking the time to read this post, and on a positive note, I really hope to see this forum returning to the welcoming, friendly, supportive site that it so often is soon.
Senior Information and Support Coordinator, NRAS