By EnduranceFun 134 Comments
I wasn't sure whether to post this or not. However, I did, and you can see all my rage quoted in the first post of the thread, so lets not go down that path.
If you receive a ban or 'suspension' on Giant Bomb you are an exceedingly small exception to the rule. This is not a site that fucks over every user for saying a swear word. The problem is that, maybe because of how few are banned and how many of those are obvious trolls or spam bots, there's not a whole lot of thought put into how the banned are managed on the site.
If you get banned, there is no way to appeal. If a moderator says you deserve to be permanently banned for saying they're silly, that's it. Even on forums like the [awful] IGN Boards, you had a reply slip you could maybe use to talk to the moderators. Giant Bomb is objectively worse in this regard. Before I was officially banned, I was warned, but a glitch occurred and I was banned. I had to find a moderator in the live chat to fix this problem. It goes without saying, but you shouldn't be put through that process and a ban response form would be one solution. An archaic one, nonetheless and I would expect a better idea than that.
If you had the best moderators in the world, you should still be able to appeal your bans because of human error. Beyond that, unfair bans exist. I realise that other sites have worse systems and this is par for the course on web forums, but I have higher standards for this website, let alone when I subscribed twice. It is frustrating that the staff have seemingly zero control over the moderation of the forum.
It's not like it'd be hard for the staff themselves to be at all involved, aside from the occasional spammers, nothing really happens on this site worth moderation. In any case, the service is very poor. I served a month ban, ridiculous considering the 'offences.' The first was saying 'suck my dick choke on it' in an obvious joke. Very anal and harsh, but fine, that is arguable.
The other offence was such bullshit that I could write a book. In the chat, I was already banned for two weeks, but no moderator said I couldn't post in the chat and as far as I know, it's not written in the rules. So I'm sitting there posting every now and again, bored because it's that long, tedious 7th February X-COM TNT. An hour in, Vinny overlays some cartoon face on Brad so I say, “@brad Your face,” which somehow merits a 600 second cooldown. Immediately I'm being insulted by about half a dozen or so users. I assume it was because of the previous joke comment, I'll assume it was Brad himself as he did later post “fuck the haters” in the chat. The cooldown put on me glitched the chat so that it was unusable. This would all have been avoided if the mods simply contacted me and told me what was the problem or been receptive to any of my messages.
It turned into a disaster and if you really want to see details it's quoted. I stuck around in the chat after, mods still on, but I got no response. I had stopped caring at that point. However, within ten minutes of the chat being ended by the mods, I get a reply in my inbox saying that because I insulted the 'moderating team,' I have a two week extension on my previous ban, making it a full month, for “you insulting the moderating team." This is true, however, I really don't agree with the notion that insulting mods is equal to insulting specific users. In my opinion, they should let this sort of stuff slide and it is unusual for mods to ban for this reason, at least from my limited memory of other forums. Now I'm on the verge of being permanently banned.
There are certain double standards at play on this site and this makes for a very confusing user-experience. Staff members can freely insult everything, including each other, with colorful language like cocksucker, faggot, asshole, fucker, but when it comes to the comments it's patently unclear whether the same rules always apply.
I decided to clean this up a bit, because it was a mess.