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Freedom of Speech

Yesterday, my headlining article aimed at those members who I feel let Chelsea Football Club down with their barbed and negative comments, provoked quite a response.

Whilst several applauded me for the stance I`ve taken, there were several that seemed to be under the impression that freedom of speech allows them write what they want, regardless of any implications their content may have,

So let me put the record straight!

Now whilst this may be an unofficial site which has always welcomed views from those who take advantage of its free membership, and will continue to do so, I, as the editor am responsible for everything contained within its framework, to the extent that I am liable for prosecution if anyone crosses the boundaries of decency. I think you`ll all agree that, at times, places me in a precarious position.

Returning to the ethic of free speech though, it has to be understood that there are limits to what is acceptable, there have to be boundaries set that abide by the laws I`m obliged to adhere to.

Whilst some of you may think there`s not a lot wrong with what you post, sometimes it does cross the line bordering on the offensive. In the past, I`ve probably been negligent by turning a blind eye to such comments - but no more.

In the past I`ve threatened to take action on serial offenders, a threat I now intend to follow up on.

Therefore, any posts that I deem to have erred on the wrong side of free speech will be removed.

Persistent offenders will then find that the axe will be swung and that their login will be blocked.

It may be a draconian measure but although I promote free speech, I`m not prepared to see this site ruined by a few who can`t abide by the simple rules set.

You have been warned!




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The Journalist

Writer: Merlin Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Tuesday January 22 2013

Time: 1:01PM

Your Comments

Thumbs up sire...Baton wielding time is long overdue IMO...:) A wise man once said "People demand freedom of speech as a compensation for the freedom of thought which they seldom use" I find this particularly pertinent on this site these days lol
JohnnyOz
that wise man wasnt me :) It was Soren Kierkegaard
JohnnyOz
I am in full support of this. Would be cool to see a 'thumbs up' or 'thumbs down' option next to each comment and if a comment received too many 'thumbs' down' then that comment would be removed. Just a thought -
ForeverChels
its not draconian... everything has its limits, so is freedom of speech
che-l3k1
Very tough to objectively police this type of thing. Might be an idea to post up some website rules? For me I have no problem with a bit of banter with anyone, and I've already said loads of times that I'm well up for any indepth and reasoned discussion, but there are times when people seem to log into the site and log out of their brains. Having a set of reference rules would certainly help manage things? Just a thought ;)
Bizarre_Blue
There is only a very thin line between free speech and common verbal assault and character defamation..
JohnnyOz
i have a few names coming up already. Anyways good news. Some of the negativeity does border insanity. Some people simply cannot have a cool head.
Blue India
Finally...finally finally....its been long overdue in my opinion....ride on sir!!!....here should only be for adults who can think and handle emotions...
layorh12
While I subscribe to this, care must be taken to avoid making this site look like weaintgotnohistory where its more or less a dictatorship. The suggestion by ForeverChels should be looked into as its nice. It will also be good if a set of rules is published for everyone to go through once again.
zilosxp
Am fully in support of dis
Abidemi
The only reservation about the suggestion from ForeverChels is if you have more negative people than positive people voting...The negative vote will carry the day lol....and it sometimes seems like that on here, there are a heck of a lot of negative bloggers..
JohnnyOz
Nice one merlin, I think u can add a reply button to this too so the comments would be more uniformed..... I am okay with this inasmuch as it is a law that binds all
Desmondadonis
@JohnnyOz - right you are mate, good point!
ForeverChels
Long over due me thinks...Would be a hard one to follow on,but hopefully it brings some sense of sanity on here. Top decision Merlin and its something we've discussed on the forums time and time again. I can't say everyone is innocent of not over stepping the line sometimes,but some people tend to over do it. I would also urge most people who have been away from the front page for a while to try and return. KTBFFH.
nelyvanile
It may be a good move. But i dont think it is possible at all. In any online forum if you try to curb the speech (whether by rightly or wrongly) then the loser is going to be the site(VC). Anyway lets see how it goes.
BlueAndWhiteArmy
Posted something to the effect on another thread about having a 'block' option whereby you wouldn't ever see that member's comments again. Not quite sure if that's possible but worth looking into I think. I'd pay for such a service on here. Then you would converse with like (used loosely, as debates are good) minded/well mannered people and wouldn't have to suffer the petulance of others!
ForeverChels
What's wrong with banning or suspending folks who talk rubbish on this site. I more than welcome it Merlin. If you think I cross the line on my posts, PLEASE FEEL FREE to suspend me. That will definitely sanitize this site. WAGNH do it I think and their membership still increases by then.
KAKUfrank
Finally, the day has come when nobody is safe to air his/her views directly from the mind, he/she must consult with the wizard "Merlin", who would either give it a thumbs up or send you in chains to the darkest Dungeon..... Lol!!..... Maybe we should chip in our voices beside comments chanting, "Kill, kill, kill, kill, kill,... Or... Live, live, live, live, live"....... Anyways, this would be fun to watch. Hahahaha!!!
Tugay08
Everyone supports chelsea here thats why they are here...they love the lub they want the best for it...but its doesn mean that they should support the player who is CONTINUOUSLY giving us nothig for past two years...if a player is the reason for our downside than everyone has the right to critize him..if a player dosnt not perform for 4 or 5 match or more you can understand thats his form is not good...but for two years he is still doing the same stuff and keeps on complaining...people here keeps on abusing and criticisng ron and buck because they are not dong their job properly becasue everyone say they are just the yes man...wether roman is doing wrong also they just agree with him...they just nod their head and dont give them proper advice...and here do you want us to do the same....i dont think critizing a player doesnt mean you dont support your player...its just he want that player to perform well so that he can help his team more...everyone has their own opinion own way of thinking own way of supporting...in the end everyone loves chelsea
shlok27
hope it makes a differnce, for me BRAVOOOOO
Tala4good
Merlin i think you may have your first scapegoat...thumbs down from me @ Tugay08...Is there an 18 limit on this site? or do we potentially have 11 year olds on here? #justsayin
JohnnyOz
Then again, hope this isn't because of my opinion to relegate the "Parental guide" software here which prevents VC members from cursing properly and relating swear words in the form of Asterics (*), is it?....... I'm sorry though, i was just sick of seeing words like "Feck", "Sheet" and "P.issed", all the time..... Lol!
Tugay08
I guess it was inevitable..Uncle Merlin's attempt to allow the members self police has simply not worked out too well. I agree with those that suggest it would be nice on the front page of the website to carry this disclaimer regarding the regulations and expectations with a short list of 3-7 points detailing activity that will be subject to sanction and bans. That way it is clear in black and white for everyone to see and then no one can say they didnt know. This may well be mark a rubicon moment in VCs growth and development..and it has long been coming.
GabeU
For those who are offended by Merlin's new laws, feel free to leave. That's my opinion. This is a FREE site that unites CFC fans from all over the world. Conversation--if we can even call it that--has reached an all-time low. If this course of action elevates the standards of the site, I'm all for it. The amount of ignorance I read here is an insult to those of us who actually care about this club, know its history, and respect those who've played a part in it.
RadioactiveD
@ shlok27 i disagree, i think there are a lot of people on this site that blog very objectively and criticise players or the team when it is required, but in a concise, mature fashion. It is the unrealistic and unrelentingly negative attitude of some people that makes it irritating to real fans...Hopefully you are a real fan, if so you wont need to be told or convinced about what merlin and a few of us have been advocating for recently...you would just feel it in the pit of your belly...Its easier to blurt anything out without giving it some thought (anyone can do this), what stands people out is when they share their thought processes & thought out opinions on this site as proper fans...I personally think pple like Latunvic, Saber, Cobham Blue, Ken4CFC, Ohans, Radioactive & Gabeu (when he gets his chelsea mojo back) just to mention a few can be quite insightful with their comments...A lot of others not so much but here we are....Four trophies are still a possibility -Keep the faith
JohnnyOz
@Johnny, what wrong have i said? Or is sarcasm gonna be an issue from here on in? Anyway, my true take/believe on this development is that, if and when these rules are finally laid down in black and white for all to see, we'll all just become pretenders, because each and every single person here in VC is guilty of crossing that line, I have read enough comments here to know that. So go on and shackle our thoughts Mr. Merlin. So that we can call it black when we see white.
Tugay08
@Johnny, don't i also share constructive criticism most of the time? Why wasn't I mentioned?.... Lol!
Tugay08
@tugay, lols ease up mate, merlin will never ask u to call white black, what I see that he is saying is not to use swear words
Desmondadonis
Long overdue. Well done Merlin.
jollyheart Torres
Rodger that @Desmondadonis
Tugay08
merlin on the so called getting behind the team thing, i recall vivdly last year a certain editor which shall remain nameless after the Valencia match call Kalou a fecking idiot. now i dont think that was getting behind the player was it?
Jamaican Chelsea Fan
@RD...perfectly put! For the past 4 months I've only visited this Home Page when I'm wearing a pair of disposable latex gloves! I am an old fogey though! :(
mutters
fredom of speech is just that "freedom of speech" there areno "but's" in definition of freedom of speech. http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/freedom+of+speech
crochels
* be truly free*
traykidd
@ che-l3k1 if free speech has limits it would'nt be. truly free now would it?
traykidd
Agreed!! There is always a limit to everything,lest anarchy may prevail. Freedom of speech doesnt equip you to use just any language,it doesnt permit you to be foul at its extreme. I believe as rational beings,we are able to pass our messages across without sounding abusive and without flaring tempers. That said,an opinion remains an opinion whether some one else disagrees with it. So long as it is not relayed in a harsh and unpleasant manner,and as far as it is devoid of malicious intent and extreme contempt,it is a fair and acceptable opinion. One may see another's revered player as unuseful,so long as there are no swears and insolence in it,it is your view.
Ohans
and to think I haven't posted much in Jan LoL
@Mq
Well-done Merlin.... too many high judges and miscreants here these days..... I wonder if some are actually for Chelsea as they seem to bask in the fact that we have problems at the moment and all they do is criticize, criticize, criticize... It's too much!...
Latunvic
I can only imagine...
@Mq
I also subscribe to the intended house rule. It will go a long way to check people's excesses and curb barbarism on here. However,lets look at law and grace from the angle our Lord sees it. I mean,let it be more new testament inclined than old....just saying!
Ohans
Its official.... The chelsea website have amounced Ashley cole's contract extension. The board are not as clueless as most members here claim. They obviously have a plan and are sticking to it. We re indeed a squad in transition and the board are gradually shreding the old guard. Lamps, hilario and paulo to leave this summer while terry, cech and cole would be retained to provide the leadership while the squad elvolve....
Chelz Akamz
yaaaay and he doesnt earn 200k either like some will have us believe...
JohnnyOz
Good news bout ash, alot of rumours that we will let marin go on loan which would leave us short in his position. perhaps paving the way for Isco?
european_champions
Yippeee!! Was wondering why we should let him go when he is still as light as a 25 year old. Glad he can stay on...until we are stronger and better and with a ready replacement.
Ohans
@johnnyoz...sometimes you cant control angers emotion comming out if your team doesnt perform well and vc is the only place where you can express it in the form of words...yaa a lot of them say lot of silly stuffs here but that doesnt meant its was meant on purpose its happens in the heat of motion...similarly there are lot of people here who cant hear anything negative about their favourite players....if the player doesnt perform well than they cant hear his criticism from other people and they make other people look like he is antichelsea because he said against his players...yaa i can understand the sentiments attached when it comes to your fav player but that doesnt mean that you should overlook his weakness...i think it would be better if people started thinking from the club point of view rather than their fav players point of view....and i dont think there are any term like real or plastic fan...for a person who watch chelsea match day or night and is giving his valuable time to come on this site to give his point of view share his opinion wethers other like it or not is a chelsea fan...every person cant be same so cant be their thinking... and we cant take that rights from him...
shlok27
does any1 on this forum actualy talk bout football? Agree @ ohans, Cole showed against Arsenal just why he earned a new contract
european_champions
Freedom on ignorance not of speech which runs deep in those members, There are however selectively single minded and super emotional not passionate. They don't understand the meaning of freedom of speech or Pareto optimal condition 1. Constructive criticism is the way.
shaka09
and I do think WAGNH is a nice site reaaly...they throw fantistic banters without going overboard...and the arguments aint full of curses...of course the quality of arguments here is a lot deeper...if only we can just scrap the childish bit...
layorh12
Yeah, I also think Marin will be going out on loan and may be sold during the summer window to pave way for KDB. For now, I think we will get a winger that can play on both flanks, maybe Willian. I dont think Isco will come this window, maybe next season.
SameX
Freedom of Speech is fantastic....it's right up there with Freedom to not listen!
dickturpin
Imagine a Willian-Isco-KDB band of 3, Ah!!! Not to mention Hazard-Mata-Moses. Move Oscar to the pivot, sell Torres and make Piazon our 2nd choice CF, he can play as a false 9 and be our Chicarito.
SameX
@SameX..if that happens...it will be good thinking...I want KDB to play for us next season...and if marin is loaned out now..'ll expect at least one more player to be brought in this window...
layorh12
If Lampard goes in the Summer and Josh is not ready we can sign a veteran CDM that is a good passer of the ball and solid in defending on a 2 year deal till Josh is ready. DeRossi will be perfect but he will not come cheap.
SameX
@Layorh We will definitely add 1 or 2 players before Feb. 1. The board like doing late buisness, maybe they want to sell Malouda and loan Marin out first.
SameX
Rafa does not rate Mikel, Romeu is injured and we don't know when Rami will get injured as he is playing too many games of recent. This brings me to the conclusion that the board will add one pivot player before Feb. 1.
SameX
Btw, Mikel will not be back till mid-Febuary cos am of the opinion that this Nigerian team will go far.
SameX
If Marin is going to go out on loan, then why not try for dzagoev the other way. Surely if Marin is going on loan then a couple must be coming in. Willian and dzagoev please. There is no freedom of speech, it's just a myth.
Blue1989
Moses will also be out till then, Piazon is already gone till July. Marin may go out on loan. This leaves us very thin with our options in the attacking 3rd and am scared cos Mata is damn tired and Hazard has started showing some signs of fatigue. Am sure the board can see what am seeing and already have serious plans in place.
SameX
@Blue1989,,, Am not sure Dzagoev will make it in the EpL, btw, we are not linked with him.
SameX
I totally agree with the new rules, imo vc welcomes freedom of speech with open arms,feel free to voice your opinion and disagree with each other...as long as youre using good ethics and proper manner,I'm sure nobody's geeting banned,afterall we are all well educated people,and most importantly we are talking to our fellow blues brothers :)
jay-cisc
I once had this kinda of dicscussion with some folk on here somtime ago..i think @Ess Bison..the guy almost went nuts...I am soo relieved there will soon be former rules now...lot better...
layorh12
btw I do think WAGNH is a great site,the comments are funny,you can see loads of funny gif...to me VC is when I wanna read some deep and heavy posts,and WAGNH is more of a fun and easy reading,for the match day moment I visit VC but for the post match posts(especially when we loose), I go to WAGNH to release some stress and have a good laugh
jay-cisc
Thnks sir merin.let anyone here tell us that his/her own coutry there is no a prison, why,for obvious reason,we cant submit our behaviors to a free will:we all must operate on rules.too much of anything is poison.
blue5
I kinda agree with this. Just don't ban shlok27...;) Funny people are cool.
Luna
Reports that Athletico will attempt to loan Torres next season with a view to a permanent move. Do u guys tink we should go for Falcao or use players already in the club such as piazon lukaku and feruz? I hope the latter, think with our creativity in midfield any striker with half decent movement will bang in goals
european_champions
God rules Merlin. @ european_champions, I would have Ba na Lukaku as our two strikers. No need for a massive vanity signng.
BlueKiwi
I just have one thing to say: if you're not spouting nonsense and insulting players, then what do you have to be worried about the new rules? Certainly if you make reasonable, coherent arguments that further a civil discussion, then you do not need to hide under the pretext of freedom of speech.
ddrogba
Mikel had a 3 match ban around the time Rafa was appointed, then an injury, then he went to play for his country.
foreign_viewer
Nonsense: anything you disagree with?
foreign_viewer
Torres should play or shouldnt
Lampard extend contract or not
these are freedom of speech
hoping torres injured
lampard is a disgrace overrated legend
these arent
learn the different
JackSufre
Well done uncle Merlin, it's time we brought order to my favourite site. I've been a member for more than 4 years, I can see the quality of this site declining thanks to these idiots. I'm all for freedom of speech, butwhen someone keeeps continuously bashing a legend, that offends me & severw other proper fans in this site. I know just the people who'll be sulking, if you can't appreciate our legends or ypu want to keep bashing players, your not welcome here. Go find some place else.
shaf86
Am new member , firstly, am so exciting to join and be part of this great forum. secondly , I hope we sign Celtic duo of Hooper & Wanyama .. they will come cheaper & back up for our squad to the end of the season ...
jonny001
Jonny001...welcome on board...nice place to be but somtimes things could get reaally hot.....like you suggesting we sign..Hooper??....pleease...freaking spurs reject when he was a lot younger (at 14) and even his record this season is not impressive (4th highest goal scorer in lowly SPL)...decent player but definitely not chelsea standard...Wanyama...good player but I dont think we are thinking about him....hope this aint a kind of baptism of fire for you..lool....are you from Scotland?....hopefuly you'll have a good time....cheers mate!
layorh12
@Jacksufre,something like that.
Ohans
I'm seriously considering buying the entire vital network and impose these sort of rules. My comments yesterday seemed to have sparked a response, something we all agree with. Thanks for backing me up Merlin, I'll email you :-)
djdutts
testing
trueblue44
Excellent news. A couple of months of this and it might be worth coming back and participating more actively on a site I used to love. The prospect of enjoying proper discussions with people capable of reasoning and rational thought (even when, or maybe especially when, it differs from my own) is most appealing!
SpanishBlue
Would calling frank lampard "fat" be deemed as abusing : freedom of speech? just want to be clear
Dwonder
loool Dwonder you west ham fan you....he's a fine physical specimen our Super8
JohnnyOz
LOL @merlin has really steered you lot up! only thing i would suggest is putting up clear limits to what one can say and cannot say on the home page cause i can see how this whole episode of limits to free speech can get confusing. on a completely different matter heard CR7 was in another car crush that almost killed him! hope his fine
pego sama
Beckhams son Brooklyn is having trails at cobham for our undi 14's don't know if that's good or bad news though, cause we might end up breeding a manu fan who could turn on us if he reaches his potential, just saying!
pego sama
Also heard brookly Beckham(Son of David Beckham) was having trials at Chelsea.
nelyvanile
In total agreement. do unto others what you want others to do unto you. No more bad monthing in writing. Merlin do not use an AXE use a very big catapiller to grade them out of VC
kwesai
Guess it's the beckham attack on chelsea! :)
pego sama
Reports now filtering through says...According to Skysports, David Beckham's eldest son Brooklyn has had a successful trial with ChelseaFC & will join the club's academy! If he got a right leg like his dad,then no probs. The upside to this is that,he was brought to Chelsea FC Academy,rather than Real Madrid or Manchester United. That's a good stamp of approval init.
nelyvanile
if he turns out to be half the player his dad was, then good for cfc....but his dads regular attendance at the training ground cant be particularly good for concentration levels of the other kids :) stories like this make one feel old though...brooklyn beckham? really? i remember the day he was born like it was yesterday lool
JohnnyOz
Hahaha...My exact tots Johnny,saw a pic of the lad with his dad and he was pretty much his dads height. How fast they grow.
nelyvanile
Cobham is one of the best when it comes to facilities,otherwise u dont expect beck to take his son in any traing ground.
blue5
this isn't the same site i joined in 2009 ...... lots of new names with insults thrown at our legends and our players ..... merlin i hope you bring back the spirit of those past years , i know it s a tough job and it s a bit impossible to achieve but your the only man capable of bringing back our beloved VC. so good luck .
kam.kh
insulting a legend should be grounds for dismissal. wishing a cfc player injury should be grounds for dismissal...wishing the team to lose should have punitive implications....ahhh feck it free speech is more important than anything...that is why i come here....no rules...more tolerance...more debunking of idiotic views
Gian-Franco/Luca
It's well stated! I will abide 100%!
objectivekritic
Hi, just want to verify that calling our mananger "tubby" is considered freedom of speech? thanks
EmeliaX9
@emeliax...well the fat one called us plastics and such and his refusal to apologize is indicative of the fact that he harbours those views still...therefore the way i see it even if he wins ucl after ucl with us...he will be to me atleast rafa the grotesquely gluttonous gaffer...
Gian-Franco/Luca
I think this is good , it will hopefully prohibit members bickering about football/players/transfers/other stuff. I'm sorry for going over the top with my swearing but sometimes people just lose it. I hope for peace. Live long and prosper.
CFCTalal
JackSufre - is calling the Chelsea manager tubby or the fat waiter acceptable according to your criteria?
londonfc
Long live Merlin the executioner!!!! Free speech is a privilege that many have died in seeking, that doesn't give any idiot a public forum to wish bodily harm upon those with whom they disagree. If that stance is draconian, then I say long live the axe swinger! I'd certainly spend more time on the front pages if they hadn't degenerated to the lowest common denominator.
rslack
londonfc, thats freedom of speech but unprofessional . normally used when you are ranting , we cant be that professional when throwing a rant dont we .
JackSufre
 

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