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Old 20.02.2011, 22:59
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Is English Forum a playground for Expat Bullies

When I first arrived in Basel I felt lost and disorientated. Like so many others I was a stranger in a foreign land. Neither myself nor my wife spoke any Swiss or German. I came to Basel because my wife had been unemployed in Britain for over a year and with a 25% cut in Health and Social Care being brought about by the new alliance government I was staring at losing my position as a senior social work consultant and therapist. When we got desperate enough to start looking at overseas posts my wife was offered a job here and we came as economic migrants. We came because we felt we had too.

I will not bore forum veterans (who would dare) with the somewhat extensive list of emotional, psychological and pragmatic difficulties such a move entails or the absolute need new people have for help support and advice. But such things are needed. New people are very dependent on the kindness of strangers. I certainly have been and will be forever grateful to those people I have met here in Basel who have openly and graciously helped me for no other reason than that they have wanted too.

As Village Idiot has noticed there is a very damaged and hostile culture on the forum that some members seem to exploit to allow themselves to criticize, insult and attack people who are simply asking for help and advice. The reasons why people would want to 'offload' and generally abuse other people who are in the same situation as themselves can be found in numerous psychological and therapeutic papers and books. Again I will not bore forum veterans with any details.

The question I would like to ask is why does the forum (by repeated posts by members of this nature) seem to allow this. Whilst those new people who are treated in this way on this forum are adults and seem to be able most of the time to cope with the 'school playground' nature of such comments bullying is not fun. I wonder how many new members are lost every month by receiving such a reception.

Does the forum wish to become a playground for expat bullies?
Whilst those members who use the forum for this purpose will get a short-term cathartic affect from this behavior the reinforcement of it by their actions are as likely to damage them as it is to damage those new people who are subject to it. Could the forum be more than this? What help can it give those people who clearly find themselves compelled to act in this manner?

I have read many posts by people who are clearly attempting to be kind and helpful. What help can they be given to make their voice louder and bigger?

What does the forum want its culture to be? What voice does it have?


N.B. When I added this post to an existing thread the thread was moved before anyone had had a chance to respond to it. That is why I have reintroduced it.

Why was this thread moved before this question could be addressed?
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Old 20.02.2011, 23:04
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Re: Is English Forum a playground for Expat Bullies

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Why was this thread moved before this question could be addressed?
Because it isn't a very interesting question, and is sure to end in a trainwreck of a thread before being locked by a bored moderator who has had to read all this tiresome nonsense a hundred times already.

You didn't use to go by the username of Mrs T by any chance, did you?
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