Courtesy, Respect, and Kindness among Forum Members

On more than one occasion in the forum, forum members have had to be reminded to be kind, courteous, and respectful towards each other. Should that really be necessary for grown adults?

We all come from different backgrounds, have different educational levels, and different experiences of the world. There is never any excuse to be rude, disrespectful, discourteous, or unkind to someone. There is never any excuse to make someone feel less than to make yourself feel ‘better than’. No one is better here and no one is less than here. Some people are great writers; some people may need a little help. Some people are great speakers in front of an audience, while some may shy away. Some people are great cooks–while others need to order out. No one in this world is perfect–we all need help from time to time and or/a ‘shoulder to lean on’.

There is a saying, “think before you speak”. Well, in the case of the forum, “think before you write.” Don’t say something to someone that you don’t want said to you. You never know what someone’s story is or what they are going through from day to day. I believe the forum was created to exchange ideas, stories, and be helpful with one another. Why not use it for its intended purpose?

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Very well said - I totally agree with you! I haven’t come across any disrespectful comments from members on here but I have sensed there are certain members on here who really like to “hear themselves talk” so to speak. Maybe they are trying to be helpful but it doesn’t always come across that way. I do wonder how much time some of these members spend on this forum - perhaps they don’t have any other interests or pursuits in their life but their helpfulness may come across as being intrusive.

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You also have to keep different cultures in mind. In some cultures, being blunt and laying things out directly is expected and appreciated while those from other cultures would consider it extremely rude and unkind. I think that has happened a few times. I think it’s important to read the room and as this forum tends more towards a softly softly communication style, people from more “abrupt” cultures would likely do well to adjust their communication style as it makes them look like the bad one in the situation.

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@sharondc I´d like to applaud you for your courage in bringing into the open this elephant-in-the-room issue.

@Angela-CommunityManager Perhaps the means to “unfollow” people and thereby deny them access to one´s posts (and vice versa), which consequently would improve the netiquette and minimize the THS´ conduct reminders, could be a helpful tool. (I was looking for that button for a long time now :wink:.)

p.s. Just checked the Discourse site. There is a follow plugin (unfollow should be in it too??). However, this plugin is only available for Discourse hosted sites. If you are, it might be worth testing.

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Hi @RadarInc … just popping in a response here pending Angela next coming online later today. The “follow” plugin looks interesting - it was only added to the official plugin list last October and not available when we began the forum - so thanks for raising this. We will have a look and see if it’s something we (team forum) can install and test or whether we need to get the wider team involved, in which case it may take a little longer.

In the meantime (you might have already discovered this), you can suppress user posts in your Preferences/Notifications/Users found under the head/shoulders symbol on your user icon.

Thanks again and all the best, Vanessa and the team

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There is a mute button and it works :clinking_glasses::dancer::heart:


I’ve only ever used it once. I make effort to learn to be tolerant and accepting of all views but when it gets personal, I protect my space.

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@Amparo … thank you … ah, this discourse thing is really not my cup of tea :wink:

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Ignore also works so you don’t even see posts by that person. I’ve used it for one member who is just more abrasive than I care to deal with.

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Yes was going to stop using the forum because of this but I don’t see why I should .respect and kindness because we don’t know what individuals have gone through in their lives .thank you .

@Genevere “Don’t ever let anyone steal your joy.”

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Yes I’m a half full kind of person always positive even though I have had really difficult times. but nobody goes through life without some hurt.it makes you stronger I I think.knock me down and I get straight back up.

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I think some of the problem is frustration. There is so much good advice on this forum from both old and new people but it’s ignored then people are upset when things go wrong for them.
Effort has to be made to achieve any worthwhile goal but some want everything to be handed to them and when it’s not they dish THS, the moderators and the people on the forum. I am learning to ignore such threads but it’s so difficult sometimes. I walk away shaking my head and gritting my teeth. In real life I can’t be friends with everyone I meet and I adopt that attitude online as well.
My new statutory is to try and finish each post on a positive note. It softens the blow …. Sometimes.
Summers coming, the temperature is rising and there are so many animals for us to love so good luck to everyone in your endeavours.

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Unfortunately I’ve noticed, as a relatively new user of the forum, that it has lost some very experienced members like @Twitcher for instance, for this reason if I may say. I hope these members will come back.

Everyone’s opinion and experience is interesting and valuable, when said in a kind and respectful way. So thank you @sharondc for bringing the matter and making this necessary reminder :slightly_smiling_face:

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Thank you @Alohana, there are some members who reduce their contributions and interaction choosing to take more of a reader position from time to time, they do not leave the forum just take a rest and return when ready to rejoin in the conversation and of course as a member will always be part of our TrustedHousesitters community.

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In the words of Moms everywhere, if you can’t say something nice (or constructive) don’t say anything.

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That’s a lovely post. I must say that I am finding the criticism a little bit much at times. Maybe I should not ask for help on the forum.
All I want to do is make sure that any potential sitters will have a lovely time and enjoy the house and surrounding area.

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Please please please ask for help. If you ask questions it not only gives you suggestions but the whole community. I for one have sat down to rethink some of my strategies and so far the tweaks have worked. I’d never thought of adding (or taking away ) these things without reading other peoples experiences.
Don’t take the criticism to heart. This is definitely not a one way fits all process. What works for me would definitely not work for others. The suggestions are the ways it’s worked for the writer, it’s not the be all and end all.
Keep reading, writing and listening and you’ll find your perfect path …… a bit like life!

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Hi @Coco as @ElsieDownie says please continue to ask for help it is the way we learn from each other.

As forum moderators our team will always work hard to keep the purpose of our community forum front and centre which is to create a safe place where all members feel welcome, respected and confident to engage in conversations with other members and even when opinions differ, which they inevitable will, all discussions and interactions remain courteous and respectful.

There have been many great moments and members new and experienced have been helped by engaging in the forum and not just our member community but the entire TrustedHousesitters team have connected with more members than would have been possible without the forum.

So keep asking your questions … please!

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You have to remember that you’re getting feedback from a diverse group. What person A tells you to add might make person B never apply. So take all suggestions with a grain of salt and follow what feels right for you. It’s YOUR home, YOUR pets so it needs to be YOUR listing, not a frankenstein listing meant to try to draw in every possible person.

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