Thursday, October 16, 2014

Censorship at Quit-line

The government supported Quit-line service has rules about posts on their blogs. One of those rules is that you must be supportive of other bloggers. Tonight when I pointed out that their system confused following a bloggers postings with supporting the blogger they censored my post with a bland "it goes against the blog house rules, which includes being supportive towards other bloggers"

Luckily as Quit-line can't control my ability to post in other places I can still show what I was trying to post. As you can see below I was not only not being unsupportive of other bloggers but explaining how I support them.

I emailed straight back asking exactly what  part of my post broke their rules. They declined to answer, sending me instead a form letter claiming they will respond but as they've previously shown in actual fact they don't respond. I think they just like to brush things under the carpet.

It looks like quit-line can't take a single piece of mild criticism.

Update 6 PM Thursday

They did respond with
This blog has been declined as being unsupportive because it does not support fellow bloggers. However I will refer your email to the Team Leader for their consideration. 
At around this time they also decided to remove the Original post after 11 hours.

This was censored later: the original Post Thursday morning
I just went through a strange little exercise. I was supporting about 40 bloggers and couldn't name more than a dozen of them so I decided to clean out the ones that were no longer of interest to me.

When I've found that a regular poster stops interesting me I've dropped them off the list so this was only ever going to remove infrequent or departed bloggers.

I just "unsupported" all the bloggers in the list after opening a fresh tab for that blogger's posts; I kept doing this until the "Bloggers I support" list was empty.

After that I went through the individuals either adding them back into the list or deciding otherwise. I've ended up supporting 19 people,

The regular posters and new ones that have posted in the last couple of days were safely back in. They haven't had time to change much and I haven't had time to lose interest in them.

By the time I got back to the ones that haven't posted in the last week I was starting to find a mixture of people I miss because they haven't posted recently and a smattering of people who just posted once, either to say they were starting or to say they'd now given up for an extended period and were just checking back in.

The further back in time I went the more people I found who were at day1, 2 or occasionally 3, blogged once or twice and then vanished from here. When someone was at day 2 a month ago and has said nothing since then I hope it was just that they found quit-line blogging wasn't for them and have continued their quit on their own.

Alas I fear for many it is not so. To those people, I hope you can find your path to non-smoking, one that works for you.

An earlier version of this posting was originally published on Quit-line on Thursday 16 October 2014.

This is what they first censored:
Update 17:00 Thursday - What do you mean by "supporting"

I seem to have upset a few people when I said I was "unsupporting" people on Quit line when they no longer posted blogs that interested me or even posted blogs that I disliked.

There's a flag on Quit line that makes it easy to find a small group of bloggers out of all the bloggers on here. This could have been called "Follow" as Twitter does, but no, Quit-line decided that to be more positive they would call it "Support" which means that when I no longer wish to follow a person's postings I need to click something that says "Unsupport" they really haven't though that one through.

Get a life people, this flag has nothing to do with supporting people or not supporting people.

When I really do support people I post encouraging follow-ups to their postings, or when I can't think of anything to say that hasn't been posted by a dozen other people I try to remember to at least give a thumbs up by clicking the "Like" button on their post.

I think if you look through the past month of blogs here you'll find I've posted a lot of encouraging follow-ups to people's blogs. That's supporting.

An earlier version of this update was originally published on Quit-line on Thursday 16 October 2014.

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