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Old Aug 08, 2004, 09:01 AM
Dave Hederich is offline
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Walled Lake, MI, USA
Joined Feb 2000
11,182 Posts
Freedom of speech is not absolute anywhere in the world. Many countries have freedom of speech that matches or even exceeds that in the U.S. in certain areas. But speech is always subject to local rules and regulations. The obvious common example is that no one in any country has the right to yell "Fire!" in a crowded theater, potentially starting a stampede that could injure or kill people. In addition to public rules on freedom of speech, private establishments have the right to post their own additional rules applying to their private areas. Those who do not follow the rules are subject to being excluded. Anyone on this forum, for instance, can be locked out for not adhering to the forum rules.

Brian, I participated in many of the threads that resulted in the forum rule being established that vendors could not comment in threads started by another vendor exclusively about that vendor's product. The reason was mostly related to Li-poly vendors posting critical comments in threads started by another Li-poly vendor to answer user questions about the specific vendor's product. This led to many acrimonious messages, so the forum rule was generally well accepted as a good way to keep things more civil.

In my opinion, the way you are now describing the rule represents either a new definition of that original rule, or your interpretation of it. I would like to see this thread completely clear up the interpretation of that rule for both users and moderators. This will probably require Jim Bourke's input, so this is a good forum to discuss the issue.

Now that the original messages that started this thread have been removed from both threads, we'll have to reconstruct from memory. Essentially, one Li-poly vendor posed a general question about the value of special cell matching techniques over and above the standard cell matching techniques used at all Li-poly production facilities. Note that this was not one vendor commenting about another specific vendor, but about different forms of cell matching touted by several different vendors. So the original thread was never about a single vendor, and thus does not appear to violate the rule as originally conceived or as described here by the moderator.

The concept of vendors not being able to post in a thread started by another vendor of a totally different product is a separate issue. Personally, I don't see where this line of thought originated, or that it accomplishes anything positive at all. It does deprive vendors of their freedom to comment on products in which they have no vested interest, and deprives all users of some intelligent input from knowledgeable members who also happen to be vendors.
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