By Jack Sinclair
I’m no stranger to conflict. I’m also somewhat familiar with getting on the wrong side of the law. When I started renegade, I understood that we would be pushing the boundaries and digging for stories and the truth but I never fully realized the responsibility involved in being in charge of a website.
It’s a great big world and a lot of people are watching. If you’re in charge of a website, the responsibility of what happens on your site ultimately falls in your lap. Web content is something that can be really hard to control, especially if you have chat rooms, forums or public posting areas. There are a few things you can do to keep a bit more control over your page.
Moderate your site – a moderator is someone who takes the responsibility of reading all posted content and if necessary, editing. I’m not a huge fan of censorship, but when you run a website, there is almost always a code of conduct set up that all need to adhere to.
Code of conduct – this is essentially the set of rules that the site has in place so everyone is treated fairly and all users are respected. If a user repeatedly breaks the code of conduct the result is being banned from the site.
Set up filters – there are a variety of filters that check for certain words, phrases, etc.
Accept articles from trusted sources – when it comes to posting articles and other pieces of information make sure you know your sources. It’s pretty important to feel confident that what you’re posting is truthful and non-threatening. Remember, it’s your site and you better be able to back what’s happening on it. You also want to be sure that you know the information you are posting is original and not copied from somewhere else.
It’s a fine line between controlling the content and allowing a website where everyone is happy. I’ve followed the line of creating a place that allows for expression but also creates a comfortable environment. Things we fight for so strongly using renegade are some of the basic principals I follow for the website: no bullying, no personal attacks and a place where people can be themselves and feel comfortable to seek out the help they need.
If that means I have to edit sometimes or rat people out from time to time, that’s how far I’m willing to go to ensure everyone is cool and everyone can feel at home.