The DC message boards suck.
There, I said it. I used to like the place. But that was back in 1999 and the first half of 2000, before it got neutered.
Back when flood control was 15 (maybe 30) seconds.
Back when you could just shoot the shit with the people in a given forum, but still somehow keep the conversation comic related enough that it didn't get deleted.
Back when you could just come out and insult someone, and not worry about people getting offended by it.
Back before the goatfuckers.
It all started one day in June 2000. A bunch of us regular Batman forum members went to the boards to find topics from a year previous bumped for no reason. Mixed in were a whole slew of stupid posts. All meant to just piss us off. Stuff like "Why Bat-Man is so great" (note the hyphen and capital M, used just to piss people off) and "Why [member name] is the definitive Bat-Fan!"
After going back and forth for a couple of weeks, with the regulars bumping up the current topics, and the flood control time getting longer, it was over.
The boards had been neutered. Rob K., who was friendly with the goatfuckers finally had to put his foot down. The goatfuckers could no longer have their way. However, I think that decision may have had something to do with pressure from upper management. Either the bosses were telling him to shape the board up, or Rob knew that if things got too out of hand and relaxed that something would happen to him. Still, the punishement for the crimes of a few were felt by all.
Because of the neutering, a group of regulars up and left the board. These were the people who had made some of the most intellegent posts ever on a message board. These were the people who could talk about anything.
And they were gone. Some of them came back, but never posted as much. Some stayed away because there was little interest in the boards anymore.
Then new people came in. It just wasn't the same. Because, a lot of them were just stupid. They weren't trying to be stupid or funny, they just were. (Kinda like some of the "new readers" and people I talked about in the last rant.) I apologize to any newer members that are reading this. This isn't directed at anyone in particular, just something that I noticed over the period of a few months. The intellegence level of new members did increase as time went on.
The biggest difference with the new group of posters was that no one seemed to be able to take an insult anymore. People couldn't be blunt about things anymore, they had to worry about how they worded stuff so people wouldn't get offended or start flaming them.
The worst part was you couldn't have fun anymore. Everything had to be related to comics. Even when a thread was started regarding the four year anniversary of the boards, it was deleted because even though it was about the message board (and more specifically the Batman message board), it wasn't about comics, and couldn't go there.
At that point, a lot of us realized that there was no community there. It was just people posting random shit about Batman in a forum. If you wanted to get to know someone, you had to go to another site, or hope that your conversation was under the radar.
To top things off, the boards are changing. Everything will be deleted in summer 2003, and we all have to start over. Reregister, new post totals, new threads, new everything. We're losing UBB, and gaining a few features, but most of the stuff that has been suggested isn't exactly making people happy. Still no edit function, and posts can be no longer than 2000 characters. (Well, some of this information is still unconfirmed, but it's highly likely. More details will come out. But, right now, we're still not supposed to know this. However, when secrets are let out, they tend to spread pretty quickly.)
To some, the new board will be an opportunity to try to reclaim the magic of the early days of the board.
But it can't happen. Not while Rob K. is still there, with his new rules and standards. It won't happen until they ease up a bit and let us have a community. (Of course, this could all be blamed on Warner Brothers, since they seem to screw up a lot. But that's another rant. Maybe.)
Feel free to argue with me on the Batman message board. Use the link on the side of the page.