Caution - strong, emotional, and perhaps irrational words follow...
"While nothing was specifically libelous, we want our forums to be above reproach and as free from flaming as possible."
"I usually let flame wars run: they tell us more about the participants more than anything else."
A couple a things strike me here.
BPL moderating policy is obviously arbitrary.
"While nothing was specifically libelous..." Then why make it a strawman issue? There are lots of posts some Suit could hang you out to dry on. This one was a little more obvious, but Suits don't care, they will go for the meat where ever it lays. "Moderate" this one, but not the next one, based on the burr under Who's saddle? Pretty slippery slope here. Especially if it is arbitrary.
"...we want our forums to be above reproach..."
Oh come now. Shall we bow our heads in silence and seek guidance?
Trying to find the lowest common denominator for "acceptability" in a public forum is gutting the concept of free exchange. I mean holy *&*%$ Batman, (oops... is the censor reading?)
"...as free from flaming as possible."
One person's flame is another's toast. Define FLAME! This board has a huge spectrum of member age, attitude, wisdom, and experience. They have experience on these forums and in the rest of the world, and I believe 99.8% of them know how to read and react to flames.
I will grant you that this last incident was over the top. But it was very useful to me on a number of points. Unfortunately new readers will never know what may wait down that particular road. I am glad I know.
I will now always wonder what a BPL staff leaves out of articles and reviews, just in case.
And what was removed when I wasn't looking.
This whole thing leaves a very bad taste in my mouth.