It is a sad fact that some people can turn the air blue with their foul language. For some it is so second nature, they don?t realize that they are talking that way.
For others, it could be a situation where, as my grandmother used to exclaim to my mother when I uttered a dirty word as a young child and didn?t know any better, ?I wonder where he learned that.?
For whichever reason offensive language is used, nearly everybody learns that such language is not used in polite discourse, whether with the spoken or the written word.
Such thoughts went through my mind as I received an e-mail shortly before this was written notifying me that someone dropped an ?F? bomb on the NumisMaster Web site in the public commentary section.
This was the first time it has happened. I suppose it was bound to sooner or later, but still there is an element of surprise and shock when it actually does happen.
The offending passage was immediately taken down. It is disappointing that all of our defenses were breached long enough to have somebody see the posted obscenity and write to me about it. But that is what happened.
Now I think we can all agree that the purpose of a Web site in the numismatic field is not to paint the computer screens across the nation with ?F? words. It is certainly not our intention here at Krause Publications.
I responded to the e-mail writer with my thanks for bringing the problem to my attention and I wrote that it is with his help that we got the problem corrected.
Such is modern life online. How do you keep the coarse material away, or at least confined to its online red light district?
Part of the risk of public input is that you never know what might occur. For many years there have been built-in delays in live radio programs to keep inappropriate things off the air, so it is not like no one has ever thought of such a problem before.
Online there are monitors and software to keep discourse on a wholesome level, but at root, a communication mechansim for a specific community ultimately is dependent on its members to maintain standards. I am grateful to have been notified. Consider this an open invitation to help us police content to keep the grafitti away.
Online writers can choose any manner of ways to express themselves to show their individuality. The topics they choose to comment on and the way they phrase their comments give the rest of us a strong idea of who and what kind of people they are without any need to resort to vulgarity.
This infinite variety of personality and approaches to topics is what makes public interaction so interesting.
Is it possible that I could see something new about Morgan dollars?
Absolutely. The day I stop learning is the day I have lost interest.
Will this be the last time such an event might occur on the NumisMaster Web site? I hope so, but that is as much in your hands as in mine. Keep the tone engaging and civil and we can all go on learning in an enjoyable hobby environment. Now I wonder where we learned that?