Should Mumsnet be moderated?

Warning: This post contains the C word so if you find it offensive please look away now.

I feel a bit sheepish today as I’ve found myself embroiled in and getting increasingly agitated by something that really isn’t any of my business.  However, it is something that I strongly believe in and have written about it before, Mumsnet:  Bullies or Bestfriends.  Hopefully, I haven’t detracted from the original argument.

For those of you who don’t know the background, Nickie from Typecast made a rather grand entrance on the Mumnset Blogging Network and received a less than warm welcome, unless being called a c*nt is a greeting I’m unaware of.  You can read the full tale horror story here.  I don’t really need to add anymore about it as any normal sane person will see that it’s really black and white case of bullying.

There are many good things about Mumsnet, I’ve read amazing stories of support, been know to use a recipe or two myself and have friends who swear by it.  Unfortunately, the apparent lack of moderation, coupled with high levels of anonymity, is generating a breeding ground for contempt and this is the area that I really worry about.  It terrifies me to think that some poor vulnerable woman would stumble into this viper pit.

I’m not opposed to swearing and at times my language could be compared to a trucker.  However, there is a time and a place.  I know MNetters pride themselves on ‘being outspoken’ but that’s not the same as verbally attacking someone.

I know on other forums (e.g Bloggered) that they have swearing filters, I know this from experience, as I absentmindedly said sh*t or something to that effect and like magic my comment disappeared almost immediately.  Why don’t they have these on Mumsnet?  I hate censorship and I think a bit of swearing, especially as stressed out mums, is fine in the right context.  However, as you will see from this clip that it’s a free for all over there.

I have just read their post on Netiquette and ‘It’s not our policy to delete swearwords (we are all adults, after all) but we do draw the line at obscenity, racist and disablist language, and wording that is truly beyond the pale.’

I can’t help thinking they need to rethink this.













Author: mediocremum

A slightly older mum of one, who drinks far too much red wine and has an unhealthy obsession with her slow cooker. During the day she's an ICT Trainer, Social Media/Online Marketing consultant and does a bit of public speaking. Full Profile on Google+

5 thoughts on “Should Mumsnet be moderated?”

  1. I was going to highlight their Netiquette statement myself but even on their network it appears that it’s not adhered to.

    Thanks, once again, for highlighting this, Chrissie.

    1. I do like the way that the Netiquette statement was written and you can tell what they are trying to achieve…a very open forum without too much policing to stifle conversation. However, as we all saw this week it doesn’t appear to be working. You’d think with their resources they could have a couple of people on board to solely moderate.

  2. I was only thinking to myself the other day that some of the womens comments to other Mums on mumsnet were a little on the edge and marginally unwelcoming. When I watched your clip provided I was totally shocked. Mumsnet portray themselves as a trust worthy wholesome tool for all mothers to be equal and voices themselves. This is clearly not the case. How sad that they are letting themselves down and their reputation.

  3. I’m not a prude but the swearing thing on there seems to be a badge of honour – totally out of all proportion

    Have blogged about whether people are thinking they are more anon on there than they really are – a quick google search can bring up a lot of personal information and you wonder what they’d do if those messages were shown to their family and friends

    1. I think they should adopt the simple rule ‘if you wouldn’t say it to someone’s face then don’t do it online’!

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