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Survivor

Some Questions

Hello,
I'd like to ask some questions before creating a forum. I'm a co-admin of a support group forum called "Survivors of Stalking" and we had a fourm on ProBoards who used to be pretty much like livejournal and other sites where one could post their negative opinions of such things as trolls and stalker. And while we never posted anyone's real names and gave it all a code name, a very obsessed nasty stalker still found it, made frivilou reports against it had someone sneak into it and help that stalker take our forum offline because of the staff there not wishing to keep getting repeated reports and so on.

So my question is, may we open a forum on myfreeforum and keep our forum private so the members there can discuss their experiences no matter how frustrated they may tend to be at times without the fear of extreme censorship while the stalker seems to be able to get away with murder and report their victims for even seeking a place to go to talk freely and without fear of being stalked? What we'd like is our support group and we already have the whole archive from the old forum which we can simply put back in to a new one. Right now we're dealing with a really nasty stalker who has a real piece of work liar of a friend who's a wannabe hacker and between them, they're always creating hate blogs and sites. One we had to report to freewebs and another we've reported to the police and made several incident reports and we'd like to share our struggles to rid ourselves of online/offline stalkers and cyberbullies and to help people be more aware of this problem and help people get in touch with the right authorities and so on. People would like to respond in a private setting and we'd like the freedom to have our support group that a stalker always tries to take away from us.
Bravo

Advice on how to deal with stalking, sharing of experiences etc I can see no problem.  The only way I could envisage a problem is if people are named and 'tried by internet', and in effect stalked themselves.  There is a way to deal with issues and that is via the police and taking personal protective measures.  As frustrating as something like this could be creating a 'hate site' yourself would be the wrong way to go about it.  It is the 'hate site' aspect of the T&C that would be brought into play here, so if you stay on the right side of those rules I could see no problem, stay legal, stay within the rules and they have zero ammunition to use against you.
Survivor

The problem we had was that sometimes when it got to be too much, there would be negative comments but all very understandable comments considering the frustration that people felt at being maligned elsewhere by a stalker/cyber bully. But no names were ever mentioned and only links to the abuse would be presented and then commented on. This is what the support group did essentially was to document, document, document. And we were doing just that while the stalker and stalker's fellow bullies continued on with their abuse on other sites. We'd simply show the content and respond to it in our private forum.

So what would be the limit of "comments" about these such troublesome people? Would words like "insane", "psycho" and "mentally ill" be allowed or would that have to be censored? Because while they call their victims these names everyday, and the victims have fought back mind you, would it be acceptable to have some way to express one's feelings? As I've said, there's never been any real names brought forth but we do have content that is already documented and a matter of record that we'd also like to have available for the purpose that say, a law enforcement officer could look at or anyone suffering from the stalker who's been stallking some of us for years now.
myff admin

Again not a problem so long as people are not identified.

There are some so called "victims" forums that are about taking some largely imaginary situation and using it to harass others under the guise of being victims.

But the difference between genuine support and that sort of lunacy is plain as day, and so long as you create something that is decent you will have no problem.
Survivor

Yeah that's what we did, we had code names instead of using real names and nobody identified anyone, there's one stalker who identifies themselves and makes it known in public, so sometimes maybe a first name is mentioned but that would be just someone slipping up and not realizing they posted a real first name or something. And I understand there are like admin-only boards where the real sensitive information could be stored and no members would have access to that. Or via PMs.

I just want to cover all bases, because there will be words, and very frustrated people venting and pouring out how they feel, but I and the other admins will keep an eye on things. Our old forum, nobody talked about doing anything remotely illegal, nobody talked about getting even or suggested violence except on the rare occasion when someone would say something along the lines of the stalker needing a clue-by-four and never had a proper ass-whuppin' stuff like that. But the most of it was basically people defending themselves against what they were attacked with elsewhere, and commenting on facts pointing out the lies being leveled at them or about them publicly on their own sites, or where they're a member.

I'd like to put in the archives from the old forum but I'm sure we'll be editing quite a bit and saving that content to somewhere else more likely. We just need a private forum where we can support each other, share info such as the right authorities to contact, case numbers, prosecuotors and lawyers contact info which would be public anyway. That kind of thing.

But I'm sure comments will be posted but no names will be given as to the real identity of the stalkers and other such vermin, and no victims will be using their real names either. Unless they choose to. It will not be something like full names. I wanted to clear all this because, well, we are being stalked and one stalker in particular is a real sociopath and will do everything to find our forum by breaking into email accounts and such and there's a good chance we'll be spotted although we hope not!! The old forum was a victim of a spy who made false reports against it and twisted what was being seen. So this one stalker can manipulate just about anyone and I wanted to be up front and make admins aware of the situation. We should have the right to discuss our experiences and document, document, document.

To share articles, links to other websites that talk about this experience and other people's documentation. What's sick about the stalker is that our forum was not only private but tamer than others and still we were railroaded because the stalker who tried to destroy the evidence had talked some other website owner into a real big drama with those admins who ran the server. In the end they did work with us and we got our archives back. It's still in legal red tape but we opted to move anyway because we weren't sure if paying the money to change the name of the forum would be of any use. The spy could have had a couple of accounts and we didn't want to take that chance.

We also have quite a bit of "screen shots" of the stalker's abusive blogs and I'd like to ask if this service offers image uploading and if not, do you know of any image host or someone who owns a server who would be willing to host the screenshots and not delete them even if there is the possibility that the stalker may attempt to hack, report and threaten the owner of the hosting site? This is all evidence and for the purpose of documentation for authorities to have quick access to it rather than sending a bunch of attachments in emails.

We want all this to be a private forum, not viewable by the public but an image host would kinda have to be so all members can see the screen captures.
myff admin

We do have image uploading which can be set private to the forum.
Survivor

That is GREAT! So if I uploaded a screenshot of something and the forum was private would that mean the image was private too? Although technically the images are just simply screen shots and if there's a feature that allows both public and private access? We can keep the files strictly for the forum alone, I'd like to know if there's a person who owns a server who would be willing to host the screenshots without fear of them being targeted for destruction.
myff admin

When you upload images they are hosted on our servers.
Survivor

Okay gotcha. Can we make some boards public and some private? I thought maybe to make an introduction board and the articles and stuiff like that public, while the victims tell their stories in private boards, or does the forum have to be all private or all public? I'm trying to figure out how things work and forgive me if I have to ask some more questions.

I just want to make sure I'm doing everything right, putting everything in the right place and staying safe from problems that could arise from having our support group while being stalked and being a potential target. I also placed the forum in the category of Educational general/other because in a way it will offer advice, how to avoid the pitfalls and how to protect yourself and your documents, etc. and there wasn't a category other than that, that would have been for the type of discussion we have.
Bravo

Survivor wrote:
Okay gotcha. Can we make some boards public and some private? I thought maybe to make an introduction board and the articles and stuiff like that public, while the victims tell their stories in private boards, or does the forum have to be all private or all public?


Yes you can do that.

If you start a phpbb2 forum (recommended) then you will receive some video tutorials made specially for MFF, one of which shows you how to do that (the permissions video).  You can also do the same in a phpbb3 forum but they work differently and there are no videos for that as yet (phpbb3 is still under development to a degree).
Survivor

Okay so far I've made some progress, and posted some rules for the forum. Outlining especially that it's forbidden to use any real names. Public links made available elsewhere, I feel, should still be put in a private section even if it is public elsewhere. I think that's the best.

I will try to browse the videos. I guess I can ask further questions in another thread on a more topic related section. Thanks for your help and patience!

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