Wednesday, 17 September 2014

A Sad Fact of Life

All blogs, especially ones that run in unmoderated comment form, continually run the risk that at any time a disgruntled individual will seek to disrupt its operation by posting gratuitously offensive contributions. We've had a good long run without attracting the attention of such a person, but for whatever reason, we've got one now.

I've tried to suggest they put their beef into some form of cogent argument and without resorting to being offensive, but sadly to no avail. I can see absolutely no merit to their complaint and until such time as they decide to spell it out in a reasonable manner, I've decided to institute comment moderation in order to block further offensive contributions from them.  

33 comments:

  1. That's OK Jim, I'd tell my PO but she'd most probably misunderstand and increase my level of risk.

    I guess I am to be subject towards comment moderation as you are everyday when you go to work.

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  2. I'm personally in favour of comment moderation, because well intended colleagues sometimes say things without malice, but nonetheless overly charged which could easily land this blog in hot waters.

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  3. 'The most stringent protection of free speech would not protect a man falsely shouting fire in a theatre and causing a panic...' It's a shame when a contributor is hell-bent and obsessive. Someone did mention that this may be a deliberate attempt to undermine this blog. Politics is littered with little conspiracies...it's a real possibility, as Henry Kissenger knows first-hand! The obvious drawback is that it may slow things down a little, but that's a small price to pay if it deprives a fool of sustenance.

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    1. Delightfully put :-)

      Simon Garden

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  4. Sad to hear this Jim. Hopefully the person concerned will develop some social skills soon. Extra work for you now though?

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  5. Hey Jim, your blog your rules! Just don't stop, we need this. I believe what is happening is a disinformation tactic. Look at what is being said and the timing.

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  6. http://m.thenorthernecho.co.uk/news/11478937.Families_vital_for_prisoner_rehabilitation/?ref=var_0

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    1. yes I saw this one as well, in the Torygraph I think. A lot of this stuff looks like retrospective attempts to justify Mr G's approach to the CJS. Not impressed, but of course he is a PR man and not legally trained, so what we get is pretty cute manipulation of the media, but no substance.

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  7. "Hey Jim, your blog your rules! Just don't stop, we need this. I believe what is happening is a disinformation tactic. Look at what is being said and the timing."

    Crikey, I ask some pertinent questions that are difficult for you to answer, I make some correlations between what you do in criticising your Superiors and what you do in "assisting" your clients and I get moderated.

    You obviously find the questions and correlations too disturbing to answer or face.

    A case of the pot calling the kettle black, you can't see it or don't want to see it, you make your living by implementing the interventions based on the same form of analysis that you criticise your Superiors for in implementing TR.

    No individualised or even generalised abuse in the above comments, so I wonder if Jim will publish it.?

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    1. I'm clearly not very bright as (1) I don't know what pertinent questions are being asked and (2) I don't understand what correlations are being drawn. Are the questions targeted solely at Jim Brown, or more generally at probation staff? What form of analysis links the implementation of TR with "interventions"? What interventions are being referred to?

      I don't feel I have 'Superiors', but there is a management structure that runs from local manager through to executive management in our area, then beyond that is the governmental arrangement of NOMS and MoJ. They are paid more to (presumably) take greater responsibility. I'm not sure they either 'manage' or behave responsibly, nor do I think it makes them necessarily smarter to be in those roles. The current trend - with some exceptions - seems to be that they (i.e. the more senior, higher paid levels of management) blame others for anything and everything whilst feathering their own nests (or nest-eggs?).

      Is it okay to ask? I'm fine if this gets moderated or edited.

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    2. "Because so many of you appear unable to comprehend that what you do on a day to day basis has the high potential to cause serious reoffending. You use the same minimisation and denial as those offenders you serve and those managers you criticise.

      This is the "Abuse" that Jim is determined to cover up."

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    3. If I thought saying what, where, whom, would have any impact whatsoever then I'd say.

      The point is simple: You implement the approved policies of the same people whom you criticise for letting TR in with open arms.

      Many of you are fine with continuing to be paid for implementing what you continuously are criticising.

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    4. Thank you Jim, but I'm still struggling to understand. I've read back through what I guess are the difficult posts and the replies. I'm trying very hard not to be dim. Is this the same disillusioned person who posted about their dissatisfaction a while ago, I wonder? They seemed to be particularly unimpressed with (if I remember rightly) sotp or its equivalent, and their PO.

      Again, happy to be moderated or edited. Whilst not wanting to prolong the difficult posts, I am keen (& curious) to understand where the anger comes from...?

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    5. I have decided to publish the above as illustrative of some of the content. Although happily not abusive, I'm not prepared to see the blog hijacked by spurious, ill-defined allegations, conveyed in multiple comment posts.

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    6. Anon 22:08 I have no idea, but the multiple posts are designed to annoy, disrupt and offend. The person appears highly manipulative and unwilling to put forward their gripe in a cogent manner. Should they decide to take up my offer, I will publish it.

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    7. My head hurts, and I've only had sight of the published posts. Presumably (reading your frustration) they are only a wee glimpse...? I hope that anon 22:04 (presumably that is he or she?) makes their argument clearer. For my part, Yes, I am obliged to implement the policies if I take the salary. It doesn't mean I agree with the politics. And when I can't do my job in an effective and respectful manner, I will walk away. But there are many who value the support and encouragement on offer in probation offices across England & Wales.

      Happy to be moderated etc.

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    8. Anon 22:08 'I am keen (& curious) to understand where the anger comes from...?'
      From what' I've seen of this person's 'Anger' now and,I think , previously (twitter) it comes from discomfort and resentment at having been called to account for his/her own errant behaviour in the past and is rather of the 'it's everyone's fault but mine' and 'lots of people's behaviour is worse than mine' varieties. Similarly it's also someone who prefers to rather clumsily try to turn what he thinks of as our 'techniques' (identifying minimisation etc) back on us as if the whole thing were a battle rather than address his own responsibility. Sad.

      Simon Garden

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    9. In an old fashioned style, rather than make assumptions as to who/why/etc, I'd prefer the poster to tell their own story. But as the post at 22:04 might suggest, they're not ready or prepared to. Perhaps there isn't a story after all? Time will tell...

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  8. http://m.dailyecho.co.uk/news/11479542.UPDATE__special_staff_dealing_with_prison_rooftop_protest/

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  9. Friend of the man in the pub17 September 2014 at 19:26

    I was told by the man in the pub that as this blog was the only place where free speech could flourish the powers that be would seek to destabilise it by any means possible

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  10. It is a shame it had to come to this, because if this poster only read back a few months they would surely see that here are a bunch of people willing to challenge both the govt and the status quo received wisdom on how to engage with probationers, and that they challenge it /hold out because they care about more than just their 'jobs'.
    Deb

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  11. So: Is it Chris Grayling trying to disrupt the blog - or Ian Lawrence? Hmmnn...

    Simon Garden

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    1. It's probably just what it appears - a disgruntled client with nothing better to do. Anything that appears close to a cogent argument I will publish - everything else is getting deleted.

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    2. Was kidding of course. Plainly you're right - and as indicated elsewhere below I'd say I recognise the, uh, 'style' of the malicious poster as a certain multi-identitied poster from Twitter also....

      Simon Garden

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  12. DLNR CRC are issuing whistleblowing policy so probably looking down on people blogging

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  13. And they would see that we are campaigning cos we are concerned about how TR will impact on the people we support amongst other things

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  14. Jim, you have 3 options... 1: We can continue the blog in the way in which we have been the past couple of days. 2: You can go to the Police and ask them to investigate. 3: Turn off the Anonymous comment option.

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    1. We have to continue with moderation. It's definitely not a police matter and preventing anonymous contributions is not an option as virtually everyone is anonymous!

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    2. we have to continue. You have to continue, Mr B! Thank you THANK YOU for the work you put in. Please keep it going, and we will keep coming here for an up to date conversation and a shedload of encouragement

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  15. Not the first time you've had to deal with somebody talking bollocks to you....... keep the faith. A geordie PO

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  16. I have read back to some of the post as I've been out of touch with the blog. It sounds like the person who is on twitter complaining about SOTP as Anonymous17 September 2014 22:08
    Pointed out. I fully support moderation as clearly this person has no idea what they are talking about and clearly needs help.
    Anarchist PO

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  17. I too have read this back and could this be the work of a senior manager (still around but rumoured to have taken EVR and working till 2015) from a former trust much criticised here by multiple posters ( who DARE NOT speak out when the Trust ruled). So yes, if so, he is using disinformation techniques such a purporting to be a service user but read it all again, the use of "superiors" and the way officers are derided. That's my theory....
    Please discard this post if you wish to Jim, but please don't stop your blog, someone is clearly rattled but, I think will come unstuck!

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  18. An historic day. Good Luck Scotland, whatever your choice. In many ways I envy the choice you've made to retain the PO role within the context of social work, i.e the CJSW role. Please do not be tempted to lose that vital link. I am aware there are ongoing fundamental reviews of Scottish criminal justice, but steer clear of the NOMS model and the shiny sales pitches of those who were senior managers in Probation Trusts.

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