This is addressed to folks here interested in model railroading, not to
the trolls and other recent usurpers.
I'm sure by now everyone knows the sad state of affairs here. What
seemed to start with a single troll ("Curt") has morphed into a
full-blown attack by a bunch of Usenet Visigoths. These worthless
specimens of humanity consider it their duty to infect and infest any
newsgroup they choose, to sprawl around and conduct their
"conversations" wherever and however they please.
And guess what, folks? There really isn't a damn thing anyone can do
about it. No "sheriff" who'll kick their asses. No way to get them
"banned", kicked off. No way to delete their messages. No "moderator"
here. The only thing that might work, as has been suggested by several
posters, is to ignore them.
And here's what's going to happen. For a while, it will *appear* as if
this forum is a smoking ruin. There will be many, many threads you won't
want to even bother looking at. I predict that certainly this thread
will be hijacked by these vermin and will likewise become worthless.
"Curt" is probably one of these creatures; certainly not the
god-sucking, brain-damaged goober he pretends to be, along with all his
But here's the good news: it won't last forever. About a week or so from
now, certainly a month, the Visigoths will be gone, moved on to greener
pastures to pillage and plunder. They get easily bored. And this forum
will return to (more or less) normal. So don't give up.
By the way, since I invoked the "Chicken Little" comparison to folks
here yelling about the sky falling in, it's true that the far greater
danger to this newsgroup--indeed, *all* newsgroups--is the fact that
more and more ISPs are not providing any Usenet service at all. And that
has much less to do with trolls and invaders than it does with simple
economics, with the fact that in the age of the Web, this quaint,
(mostly) text-based communication medium is no longer sexy and is, in
their view, antiquated and obsolete. Pity. But still, many ISPs *do*
provide Usenet access, and will for the forseeable future.
Well, rule 1 is not to respond. A troll ignored is a troll
disappointed. Too bad that lots of people can't resist.
And if it's a problem that ISP's aren't carrying Usenet any more,
there are alternatives. I'm posting this via Google Groups, which you
can get anywhere that you can get a web connection. The address for
firstname.lastname@example.org spake thus:
In fairness, it ought to be pointed out (as Ray Haddad did so recently)
that people still have thresholds of how much shit they can take before
responding. So while that is the rule, don't expect all people to follow
it all the time.
And besides, witness the conversations here between a troll's
That's true, even if Google *does* majorly suck compared to "real"
Usenet access (i.e., via a newsreader as [insert name of deity here]
intended). But yes, it's a backup.
railroading, not to
*appear* as if
or so from
News readers with a "kill file" feature are very handy for these
In certain cases (such as the topics that are obviously not model railroad
based) that is the obvious couse of action.
However, in the particular case when one of the trolls responds to a
legitimate model railroad question with a bunch of false information, it
seems to me that it is best to counteract by actually posting the correct
I did that and found a large number of groups. Some of them seemed very
specific - "CP layouts" or something similar for example.
Can you recommend one (or more) that has the sort of wide scope that rmr
has? And one that some of the excellent and knowledgeable posters on
rmr frequent at least sometimes?
I too greatly prefer usenet to mail lists, but as a recent lurker I find
this sort of thing disheartening. rec.games.miniatures.historical died
for much less distrubance...
All the web based forums are very narrow in focus. That is why some
of us like usenet still and
are trying to save this group from dying off due to trolls.
So, no, I can't recommend any sorry to say.
Don't talk to me, those of you who must need to be slammed in the
forehead with a maul before you'll GET IT that Wikipedia is a
time-wasting, totality of CRAP...don't talk to me, don't keep
like naifs, that we should somehow waste MORE of our lives writing a
variorum text that would be put up on that site.
It is a WASTE OF TIME.
- Harlan Ellison, writing on the "talk page" of his Wikipedia article