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Should A Moderator Be Allowed to Completely Change Thread Titles?

Old 01-16-14, 05:14 PM
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Should A Moderator Be Allowed to Completely Change Thread Titles?

Today I was surprised to discover that my thread title about Phil Robertson was completely edited and changed to say Game of Thrones Discussion Thread (also: ducks). My impression was that the moderator did this to poke fun at me.

While I can certainly understand why a partial title change to update the topic status is warranted, a complete title change is basically attributing words directly to me that I did not write. If there is nothing wrong with changing the title then what is to stop a moderator from editing a post and completely changing post context?


Since a person's thread history including title is forever tied to their username, I don't think this practice should be allowed. A new user could do a search and wonder why I created a thread about Game of Thrones yet started talking about Phil Robertson.

If the explanation is that the thread topic has completely derailed from the original topic then shouldn't a moderator step in, close the thread and generate a new one?
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Old 01-16-14, 05:16 PM
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Re: Should A Moderator Be Allowed to Completely Change Thread Titles?

Yes, they should.
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Old 01-16-14, 05:19 PM
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Re: Should A Moderator Be Allowed to Completely Change Thread Titles?

I updated the thread title to indicate that Phil Robertson is not on Game of Thrones. In all seriousness, though:

Originally Posted by dvdjunkie32 View Post
If the explanation is that the thread topic has completely derailed from the original topic then shouldn't a moderator step in, close the thread and generate a new one?
If we were talking about a thread of reasonable length that's only just starting to veer off-topic, splitting the off-topic posts into another thread is a very viable option. I'd argue that in a very lengthy discussion, the most recent posts are more significant than the original ones. The goal is to encourage discussion, and closing a thread and trying to steer discussion somewhere else tends to do the opposite.

Ultimately, I'd leave it up to the judgement of the moderators.
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Old 01-16-14, 05:21 PM
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Re: Should A Moderator Be Allowed to Completely Change Thread Titles?

It should also be moved to the book forum. Game of Thrones, Bible, Dictionary, yadda yadda...

At least it might die there.
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Old 01-16-14, 05:23 PM
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Re: Should A Moderator Be Allowed to Completely Change Thread Titles?

Originally Posted by Groucho View Post
Yes, they should.
That's not feedback. I would appreciate at least an explanation why you think this is perfectly fine.
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Old 01-16-14, 05:35 PM
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Re: Should A Moderator Be Allowed to Completely Change Thread Titles?

I think it's perfectly fine because it gave everybody a good laugh.
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Old 01-16-14, 05:51 PM
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Re: Should A Moderator Be Allowed to Completely Change Thread Titles?

When was Phil last discussed in that thread? If he's no longer being discussed then close the thread and start a general religion topic.
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Old 01-16-14, 06:46 PM
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Re: Should A Moderator Be Allowed to Completely Change Thread Titles?

Originally Posted by dvdjunkie32 View Post
Today I was surprised to discover that my thread title about Phil Robertson was completely edited and changed to say Game of Thrones Discussion Thread (also: ducks). My impression was that the moderator did this to poke fun at me.

While I can certainly understand why a partial title change to update the topic status is warranted, a complete title change is basically attributing words directly to me that I did not write. If there is nothing wrong with changing the title then what is to stop a moderator from editing a post and completely changing post context?


Since a person's thread history including title is forever tied to their username, I don't think this practice should be allowed. A new user could do a search and wonder why I created a thread about Game of Thrones yet started talking about Phil Robertson.

If the explanation is that the thread topic has completely derailed from the original topic then shouldn't a moderator step in, close the thread and generate a new one?
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Old 01-16-14, 07:10 PM
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Re: Should A Moderator Be Allowed to Completely Change Thread Titles?

Originally Posted by TomOpus View Post
When was Phil last discussed in that thread? If he's no longer being discussed then close the thread and start a general religion topic.
Do only threads in Other & Politics/Religion that stay precisely on topic have to remain open?

I would honestly like to know your thoughts. A discussion was started earlier among the Mods about the closing of threads, and so far the thought is to err on the side of caution, allowing discussion to go on. Is that wrong thinking?
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Old 01-16-14, 07:11 PM
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Re: Should A Moderator Be Allowed to Completely Change Thread Titles?

Originally Posted by antspawn View Post
...
Please don't start this here.
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Old 01-16-14, 07:26 PM
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Re: Should A Moderator Be Allowed to Completely Change Thread Titles?

dvdjunkie,

Others can correct me, but it has been a long held belief here that threads, particularly lengthy ones, belong to the whole community and not simply the thread starter. It is one of the reasons why users aren't allowed to delete their own threads.

It has also been a long tradition that at times thread titles are changed by mods, usually for some small comedic effect, and are done so innocently enough. I am certain that it was not changed to poke fun at you, but as both Adam and Groucho stated, for a bit of levity reflecting the current state of the thread. Nothing more. I would ask that you take it in that manner.
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Old 01-16-14, 09:28 PM
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Re: Should A Moderator Be Allowed to Completely Change Thread Titles?

Originally Posted by Pharoh View Post
Do only threads in Other & Politics/Religion that stay precisely on topic have to remain open?

I would honestly like to know your thoughts. A discussion was started earlier among the Mods about the closing of threads, and so far the thought is to err on the side of caution, allowing discussion to go on. Is that wrong thinking?
I don't mind when threads meander a bit. They will usually find their way back. But when a thread goes completely off topic for days and days, pages upon pages then why keep it open? In addition, the discussion has de-evolved into the usual two sides saying the same thing.

I know a lot of members enjoy this type of thread but, being in the minority, I just find it pointless... unless you want to reflect the change of discussion in the thread title.
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Old 01-17-14, 02:10 AM
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Re: Should A Moderator Be Allowed to Completely Change Thread Titles?

It does seem rather ridiculous that members aren't allowed to even "fix" a post in that forum, but mods can completely change titles simply for no other reason than being cute.
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Old 01-17-14, 10:21 AM
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Re: Should A Moderator Be Allowed to Completely Change Thread Titles?

Can I agree with both of these sentiments? Because I do.

Originally Posted by Pharoh View Post
dvdjunkie,

Others can correct me, but it has been a long held belief here that threads, particularly lengthy ones, belong to the whole community and not simply the thread starter. It is one of the reasons why users aren't allowed to delete their own threads.

It has also been a long tradition that at times thread titles are changed by mods, usually for some small comedic effect, and are done so innocently enough. I am certain that it was not changed to poke fun at you, but as both Adam and Groucho stated, for a bit of levity reflecting the current state of the thread. Nothing more. I would ask that you take it in that manner.
Originally Posted by Numanoid View Post
It does seem rather ridiculous that members aren't allowed to even "fix" a post in that forum, but mods can completely change titles simply for no other reason than being cute.
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Old 01-17-14, 11:08 AM
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Re: Should A Moderator Be Allowed to Completely Change Thread Titles?

Originally Posted by story View Post
Can I agree with both of these sentiments? Because I do.
Yes.

And I think Numanoid brings up a fair point. Perhaps there shouldn't be any thread changes, aside from the obvious ones such as errors or updates, in the Politics forum in the future. It is worth discussion. There is another side to the issue though.
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Old 01-17-14, 11:13 AM
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Re: Should A Moderator Be Allowed to Completely Change Thread Titles?

Originally Posted by dvdjunkie32 View Post
My impression was that the moderator did this to poke fun at me.
News flash: this forum does not revolve around you, and we aren't all out to get you. The title was changed because we had gotten COMPLETELY away from the original topic and everybody was (at that time) discussing Game of Thrones.
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Old 01-17-14, 11:38 AM
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Re: Should A Moderator Be Allowed to Completely Change Thread Titles?

Originally Posted by Pharoh View Post
Yes.

And I think Numanoid brings up a fair point. Perhaps there shouldn't be any thread changes, aside from the obvious ones such as errors or updates, in the Politics forum in the future. It is worth discussion. There is another side to the issue though.
I don't mean to be nit picky here and I rarely even start threads anymore. It just rubs me the wrong way to see my actual words removed and replaced by something I never said. That's false attribution, even if it is a minor case done for fun. From a thread search perspective, my username is still attached as the originator of the thread even if the thread belongs to the community.

I do appreciate you looking into the manner.
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Old 01-17-14, 11:39 AM
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Re: Should A Moderator Be Allowed to Completely Change Thread Titles?

Originally Posted by Numanoid View Post
It does seem rather ridiculous that members aren't allowed to even "fix" a post in that forum, but mods can completely change titles simply for no other reason than being cute.
I'm not a Politics mod, but I look at the two as being completely different things. To me, the most important thing is discussion. "Fixed" posts, at least as they were being overused in Politics, are the polar opposite of discussion. It's a snide way of saying "you're wrong, and I can't even be bothered to say why". If it were an infrequent thing, then whatever, but it was an epidemic for a while there.
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Old 01-17-14, 11:40 AM
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Re: Should A Moderator Be Allowed to Completely Change Thread Titles?

Originally Posted by story View Post
Can I agree with both of these sentiments? Because I do.
I think the difference is that title changes are obvious and funny, whereas post fixes are not always obvious or funny.

That said, I would allow fixes but require that they are clearly marked (for example by prefacing them with the word "[Fixed]" or by striking out the replaced words).
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Old 01-17-14, 11:57 AM
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Re: Should A Moderator Be Allowed to Completely Change Thread Titles?

Originally Posted by Groucho View Post
News flash: this forum does not revolve around you, and we aren't all out to get you. The title was changed because we had gotten COMPLETELY away from the original topic and everybody was (at that time) discussing Game of Thrones.
Fair enough, but my feeling at the time was the GOT references were another form of mocking my posts so the thread title change just offered more encouragement in that direction. If that wasn't the case then I apologize.

In retrospect, the replies don't appear as harshly as I was perceiving yesterday, but I think my feelings are understandable when you have page after page of immediate replies mostly to the effect that I am stupid. It becomes white noise after awhile.

I never thought that the forum revolved around me. I actually don't like this level of attention so it's best that i keep my participation at a very limited level. I'm fine with whatever decision the moderators make regarding my question. Thank you.
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Old 01-17-14, 02:54 PM
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Re: Should A Moderator Be Allowed to Completely Change Thread Titles?

Originally Posted by Numanoid View Post
It does seem rather ridiculous that members aren't allowed to even "fix" a post in that forum, but mods can completely change titles simply for no other reason than being cute.
Agreed.

In this case, the title was changed for humor purposes, not to belittle dvdjunkie. However, the humor came from the fact that maybe a dozen posts talked about GoT. It wasn't as if the entire thread changed to a GoT discussion.

Aside from the title change, which I do not think should be permissible merely for humor reasons, the thread was full of personal attacks on the OP with no moderator intervention.
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Old 01-17-14, 02:57 PM
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Re: Should A Moderator Be Allowed to Completely Change Thread Titles?

Originally Posted by dvdjunkie32 View Post
Fair enough, but my feeling at the time was the GOT references were another form of mocking my posts so the thread title change just offered more encouragement in that direction. If that wasn't the case then I apologize.

In retrospect, the replies don't appear as harshly as I was perceiving yesterday, but I think my feelings are understandable when you have page after page of immediate replies mostly to the effect that I am stupid. It becomes white noise after awhile.

I never thought that the forum revolved around me. I actually don't like this level of attention so it's best that i keep my participation at a very limited level. I'm fine with whatever decision the moderators make regarding my question. Thank you.
I didn't see the GoT posts as any sort of goof on you. However, I was surprised that the moderators allowed GoT posts to be posted in such numbers. It was actually pretty annoying because I wasn't sure what was going to be spoiled or not spoiled. It had no place there.
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Old 01-17-14, 03:16 PM
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Re: Should A Moderator Be Allowed to Completely Change Thread Titles?

Originally Posted by CRM114 View Post
I didn't see the GoT posts as any sort of goof on you. However, I was surprised that the moderators allowed GoT posts to be posted in such numbers. It was actually pretty annoying because I wasn't sure what was going to be spoiled or not spoiled. It had no place there.
I was actually going to check out the brouhaha but I've only seen through season 2 and didn't want to get spoiled.
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Old 01-17-14, 03:20 PM
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Re: Should A Moderator Be Allowed to Completely Change Thread Titles?

There were a lot of spoiler tags thrown about but I just skipped everything to be safe. There was a lot of book vs show talk.
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Old 01-17-14, 05:44 PM
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Re: Should A Moderator Be Allowed to Completely Change Thread Titles?

Originally Posted by CRM114 View Post
There were a lot of spoiler tags thrown about but I just skipped everything to be safe. There was a lot of book vs show talk.
Honestly, they did a better job with spoiler tags than most of the show threads do
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