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EBROOKS's review of Review Centre www.reviewcentre.com

★★★★☆

“The editorial oversight is uneven. A comment was...”

Written on: 07/08/2006 by EBROOKS (17 reviews written)

Good Points
Well organised for the most part.

Bad Points
Lapses in quality.

General Comments
The editorial oversight is uneven. A comment was published wherein the fellow (a gun nut apparently) was allowed to engage in a personal attack on me because he found fault with my review.



On the other hand, I submitted a book review of a Pulitzer Prize winner in literature, in which I excerpted dialogue of a mature nature, and found it was heavily censored.



The book review, which I may say offered some insights, was treated as a less than "expert" effort, while three paragraph light treatments by others, and other rather breezy reviews by me, earned "expert" evaluations.



The message that was received was "never mind any literary efforts in the book review pages." Keep it light, and avoid examining content which cannot be read aloud in an elementary school classroom.

Mindy's Response to EBROOKS's Review

Written on: 05/01/2007

It may be that the moderators found that quoting adult content on an all-ages website was inappropriate, not your literary bent. Think of it like trailers at the cinema. If the trailer is being shown to a PG audience, the trailer has to be rated PG even if the film is a 12 or a 15, it's the same here. If you quote something that has bad language, violence or sexual overtones it has to be made clean enough for ANYONE who might read it, not just other adults.

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Mindy's Response to EBROOKS's Review

Written on: 10/01/2007

It is certainly not Review Centre's policy to attack anyone, particularly our members. By "upset" I meant annoyed, aggravated, perturbed - I am genuinely sorry that our moderation policies disappointed you. Had I been aware of the complaint sooner, I would have tried to provide a suitable explanation sooner or rectify the situation.
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<br/>Unfortunately I cannot speak in regards to anything that was posted to the site in the airguns section as I am not involved with the content in that area of the site. If in future you have an issue with the moderation or with something that was said to you by another user, by all means use the contact form via the link in the page footer and let us know so that we can address any problems in a timely fashion.

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Ebrooks's Response to EBROOKS's Review

Written on: 10/01/2007

Excerpt from Mindy: “I&#039;m sorry if you were upset....”
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<br/>Mindy, please do not presume to tell me I am “upset”. I may be concerned, I may be irritated, I may even be angry, but I am not “upset”. It is a cheap–yes, cheap–rhetorical trick to attack the other fellow’s character–the argumentum ad hominem–which is used as a last ditch tactic by someone who has run out of rational arguments.
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<br/>Please refer to the “terms and conditions” for use of this site which include a prohibition on personal–ad hominem–attacks on members.

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Mindy's Response to EBROOKS's Review

Written on: 09/01/2007

It quite possibly was me that moderated your review, but I do not remember it in particular. I do understand your point, but I also feel that it is possible to discuss mature content without being overly explicit. You said "I submitted a book review of a Pulitzer Prize winner in literature, in which I excerpted dialogue of a mature nature." If the dialogue contained certain types of references, it is the policy of this site to edit those out. You should have a look at the site Terms & Conditions. If you look around, you will find that we do allow reviews of controversial films and books or books/films with mature subject matter - try http://www.reviewcentre.com/review157282.html as an example that springs to mind or read through the Romance category in books - but we do have to make certain that the discussions are not too explicit. There are legal issues at play here with regards to the site, it&#039;s not a case of the morality police being heavy-handed. I&#039;m sorry if you were upset by what you deem as "censorship" but there was no intent to stop you making your point, just a need to keep the site clear of certain types of language.

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Ebrooks's Response to EBROOKS's Review

Written on: 08/01/2007

I can see that I won’t get through to Mindy. But for the benefit of others, the ten-year-old daughter is exactly the lowest common denominator. Everything is G-rated to the level of the ten-year-old. That is a good working definition of a lowest common denominator.
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<br/>Intellectual debate is encouraged so long as it is dumbed-down for ten-year-olds. But intellectual debate and 4th grade sophistication are mutually self-canceling. And all this just in case Mary Lou happens to be looking at the book reviews. According to this reasoning certain classic books would have to come down from the shelves of the libraries when Mary Lou chances in the door.
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<br/>If we are oh so concerned about Mary Lou reading about (and even understanding) too much reality for her age, then rather than shut down the libraries and the internet sites, why not just keep Mary Lou away from the content judged offending?
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<br/>By the way, who decides what is offending?
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<br/>What is obscenity, by the way? Mindy seems to know, though she doesn’t explain. I think the usual definition is “without any redeeming social value” or something like that. But the people who like censorship tend to have a hard time identifying redeeming social value, and have failed to find it in now celebrated works of literature.
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<br/>If it is Mindy who decides what is obscene, then let Mindy make these decisions in censorship for the benefit of her own Mary Lou, but not for all the other Mary Lou’s whose tutelage is under someone else.
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<br/>Sorry, Mindy, but trying to make an argument for censorship is a losing battle. It’s been attempted and its failed time and again. But of course that doesn’t stop some people from trying, and even from having occasional local successes.
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<br/>By the way, why should a site which invites adults to comment on issues of the day be readable for children? And then only after the site is censored down to the presumed sophistication level of children? The more you examine the subject, the less sense it makes

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Mindy's Response to EBROOKS's Review

Written on: 08/01/2007

This is not about "lowest common denominator" though, it&#039;s about keeping the site readable for children. If you were quoting something adult-oriented, or a part of the book with obscenities, the moderators remove it so that if someone&#039;s ten-year-old daughter happens to be looking at book reviews, they don&#039;t see something that they should not. That&#039;s all. Intellectual debate is encouraged. It just has to be G-rated.

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Ebrooks's Response to EBROOKS's Review

Written on: 05/01/2007

I've never been too partial to the "reduce it to the lowest common denominator" approach.

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