Some time in the Sin Bin

Have you heard of the Sin Bin (aka Penalty Box in America)?

The penalty box (sometimes called the sin bin, bad box, or simply bin) is the area in ice hockey, rugby league, rugby union and some other sports where a player sits to serve the time of a given penalty, for an offense not severe enough to merit outright expulsion from the contest.

It’s not something we wanted to have to do, but today we have introduced a Sin Bin on mtvan. Currently this is specifically a Sin Bin that applies to forum participation.

Our aim has always been to constructively deal with problem behaviours, rather then outright excluding anybody. However sometimes you seem to be unable to get it through to people that we really do take our forum guidelines seriously, that we have them for the good of the community, and that they should respect them too.

The Sin Bin is mainly aimed at disruptive behaviour but will also be used for repeat posting of content that doesn’t hold up against our guidelines. If the following kind of posts are made…

Disruptive behaviour

  • Personal attacks on other site members.
  • Criticism of other members business practices purely due to difference of opinion, where the other member is acting honestly and legally. Of course if there’s a genuine problem (non-payer etc etc) with a member you should contact us immediately in private.
  • The moderators receive excessive complaints about a members posts.
  • A member is generally hostile or rude, uses bad language etc.
  • A member brings the site into disrepute.
  • Arguing/complaining about moderation or insulting moderators.

No effort to improve posting quality over time

  • A member repeatedly ignores our forum guidelines with respect to thread titles and the need for relevancy.
  • A member repeatedly posts their contact details in the forum.
  • A member repeatedly posts libelous remarks about a member or non-member.
  • A member repeatedly posts with their caps-lock switched on.
  • A member repeatedly posts empty on the forum.
  • etc (see our guidelines).

… then these problem behaviours have to be dealt with. When these problems are not dealt with it takes up excessive time that could be used for something more productive. Even worse, these behaviours begin to actively turn people away from our community, stunting its growth and harming everyone.

So, as of today we are introducing timed suspensions for disruptive participants on the forum.

Sin Bin

How it will work

In the past we have always tried our best to advise people about how their contributions can be improved. This will continue. Initially you can expect most disruptive and unwanted behaviour to be met with moderation of individual posts along with comments either directly in the post or in reply to the post pointing out what we find offensive. We hope you take these comments on-board and try act on them, posting disruptive complaints about moderation will be treated as just that: disruptive, and a timed suspension will be put in place. You can contact us in private if you think we got it wrong, we’re always listening and learning.

Suspensions will vary in length:

  • 1st suspension:  1 day.
  • 2nd suspension: 2 days.
  • 3rd suspension: 1 week.
  • 4th suspension: 2 weeks.
  • 5th suspension: 1 month.
  • 6th suspension: 3 months.
  • 7th+ suspension: 6 months.

We may alter these lengths without warning as we see fit.

When you are suspended from the forum you will be unable to start a new thread or reply to an existing one. As we wish to be transparent, we will send an email to you if you’ve been suspended. We place a tag on your profile if you are suspended, the tag also states when the suspension will expire.

At the end of this timed suspension period, your account will function as normal. We don’t hold grudges. The point of all this is to address behaviour. If behaviour improves, you are welcome to use the forum again.


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