This is updated from an older post and re-posted
I write this post to reflect on a trend that we have observed in more than one online group; the trend, or practice if not a trend, is Censorship and moderation. This include major global organization that we pay fees to join but if you decide to critique them – they block you … will write more about this next week.
We agree that some time, moderation would be necessary for new members of a group or to avoid potential problems. However, I would prefer that for professional networking and discussion groups there should not be any moderation, and for sure no censorship of opinions.
To avoid problems, the group could have strict rules if any member violate these rules, should be notified (in case it was an honest mistake) but if the violation occur again, then the group moderator can apply moderation on this specific member or ban them, if the offense is major violation.
Personally, I post a lot of articles online and I participate in many groups, with respect of the rules. However, once I notice there is a moderation – where a post or response could take days to clear … or when there is censorship because the moderator did not agree with a message I posted – professionally … then I drop my participation in such a group. Today, is such a day, where I am dropping my participation in such a group.
One experience we have had is with LinkedIn PMI Credentialed PMPs group. This is one of the largest group online and we often contribute to its various discussions. We are usually respectful in our comments, even when we offer a critique or opposing opinion we do so in a professional way. Some might argue that this is a large and moderated group, if it is than how come other comments are going through?
A few weeks ago, a general manager of a competing organization posted a discussion on another group; forgot which group it was. This person posted a new discussion, I responded, he responded once than I offered a follow-up response countering his argument. Instead of answering my points, he removed the discussion from the group. It disappeared so no one else can see it.
In another situation also from a few weeks ago, this time on Facebook, PMP Lebanon group. Apparently the moderator was away for a while and some members were posting questions with no answers. So we tried to help answering some of those questions and at least one of them was very important to members. When the moderator woke up, she deleted all of our posts and removed us from the group.
It is really sad to see people launch professional groups where the audience are senior professionals and even executives yet they resort to censorship to block others opinion and even removing people from these groups without warning or explanation of any violation of the rule, assuming there were violations. It is just a reality that some people cannot accept different opinions.
This blog is open – we do not block any post regardless of who is posting or what is their opinion. The software block spam messages.