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Old 11-20-2006, 07:21 AM
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Default Mature/Adult Content Warning


I was ordered to discuss this in a more appropriate place than the poetry thread -- a view I don't agree with -- but here I am anway to issue my own warning.

Writers Beat is drifting into the same dangerous waters that forced me to quit another forum last year. It's a whirlpool of "good intentions" (which always pave the road to hell), prudish self-righteousness and the compulsion of some people to be control freaks and it can suck the life out of a forum.

This is a writers' forum and it shouldn't function like babysitters, a PTA meeting or a censorship board. WB is about writing, not about children or family issues.

If you want to mentor children, join Big Brothers or Big Sisters. Don't sidetrack a writers' forum with the frustrated desire to be someone's parent.

We should presume a writer to be mature enough to take care of himself in this forum. If he needs "protection," he's too immature to belong to any writers' forum.

Being pressured to place an adult/mature content warning label on a thread prevents absolutely no one from reading it, but it does have a chilling effect on the writer. This goody two-shoes pose is one step away from censorship, which no writer should ever support for any reason.

WB should be for emotional grown-ups. Children should find another forum where they can read and write about bunny rabbits, Santa Claus and other pablum.

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Old 11-20-2006, 07:54 AM
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Starrwriter,
Are you talking about general writing with mature themes or about the new erotica section? If it is the latter, we talked about this at length amongst the staff. Because of the sexual content in those particular stories, there are actually legal implications for including the warning label. The feedback from those writers has been positive and supportive.

If you are talking about something other than erotica, I'll defer to others.
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Old 11-20-2006, 08:00 AM
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Being pressured to place an adult/mature content warning label on a thread prevents absolutely no one from reading it
The warning headers placed on each thread within the adult forum are only for the sole reason of legal immunity should WB get involved with such issues. You make a valid point nonetheless-- it's not a children's forum.
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Old 11-20-2006, 08:47 AM
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Originally Posted by aprilrain View Post
Are you talking about general writing with mature themes or about the new erotica section?
I wasn't aware there was an erotica section. I've found adult/mature warnings in various sections -- poetry, fiction, etc.

Originally Posted by aprilrain View Post
If it is the latter, we talked about this at length amongst the staff. Because of the sexual content in those particular stories, there are actually legal implications for including the warning label.
Sexual content should not be confused with pornography. The law is concerned with pornography, so there are no "legal implications" involved with sexual content per se.
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Old 11-20-2006, 11:10 AM
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I hear what you're saying, because "pornography" by definition lacks artistic merit, and I think anyone on this forum would agree that the stories posted here have artistic merit.

Stories and poems that have adult themes, but don't rise to the "erotica" category don't necessarily have to have warning labels. I hope I'm not speaking out of turn here, but I don't believe that this is a WB rule. If an author chooses to use such a label, however, I think it is useful to potential readers and I don't see why you would have a problem with it. As you said, it doesn't necessarily dissuade readers from reading it.

I will disagree with you on the erotica section, however. I consulted an attorney, and through my own research of websites that post erotic stories and their corresponding legal disclaimers, I think it would be wise for WB to post similar disclaimers. I would think that most readers could tell the difference between a story that contains some sexual content and an erotic story, but there may be times when that line is fuzzy. If you have an issue with a specific posting, feel free to bring it up.
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Old 11-20-2006, 10:42 PM
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Hear hear!

(I haven't posted in a while, but you have my undying support)
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