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I am aware how easy it is to upset people on this forum...unintentionally. My habit is to make light of matters at times, to make a joke or two (that I think is very funny at the time of writing but later realise is tactless) but also to take this forum seriously and with respect for all contributors. The forum is great for advice, opinions, debate and "stirring" the pot a little. However, it is important to view all comments as being well-intentioned

With the exception of known trolls and sock puppets, I agree.

The majority of posters here are either people with genuine queries that deserve the best answers we can give or people with experience that can be of great help and who give of their knowledge freely.  Long may such exchanges of advice and opinions continue.

Best to remember though that we all read posts in our own tone of voice and not that of the poster so sometimes posts can seem flippant, abrupt, off-hand or downright rude.  We should be careful when posting and thick-skinned when reading.


Christopher, as I'm sure you know, it's a well-documented problem of any forum because, with the written word, people miss all the visual and tone-of-voice cues that would normally tell them if you're being light-hearted. That's why smiley-things can be useful. It's also why some of us really enjoy 'Fork Handles' because we know that that's a very light-hearted thread. 

After using 'Mustardland' (The Archers m.board) for a few years, I gave up because there are some major paddies on there with a lot of flouncing and huffing and plain old nastiness sometimes - I find it much kinder and more peaceful here; I have recently had great fun helping to chase off trolls with silly humour rather than getting upset. 



Good point, well made Christopher

Jean Genie

As one who is growing a thicker skin, I agree !


All wise words. Amigos and amigoesses!!.........feminine of amigo perhaps?

 I now know why Christopher1 had to become Christopher2.

Only kidding.

I think the word you are looking for is Amiga.

The problem with humour is that everyone thinks that they are funny but there are quite a few people on this board who are not funny or correct, and as for abrupt what about the people who can bore for England.

Only people with thick skins should play on forums.

Everyone on this board is funny and correct, never abrupt or boring, and thick skins are absolutely surplus to requirements. As chris2 says, read twice before you react.

flowering rose

well said,its meant to be  enjoyable and where like minded people come  together and I guess sometimes we get carried a way.We  all like to think we are right but often we are wrong.keep smiling.

Pennine Petal

I always find that in work if I leave some of my emails a few mintues before I press send and then go back and reread them, I often change the wording. The immediacy of the digital medium can sometimes trip us up!


Obelixx, what is a sock puppet please? PS Obelix was always my favourite in Asterix the Gaul, I used to watch it on the beeb and I bought the books.  

See what I mean, I was making a joke and you took my comments seriously.LMAO.


Obelix was always my favourite too, Glyn.



I can answer sock puppet-it is a troll who uses two identities to argue with himself to get more people involved in his nuisances

or her obviously.


I do live in Belgium which has its share of heroes like Obelix - eg Ambiorix from what is now Tongeren and who had dealings with Julius Caesar - but my name comes from my love of clematis on obelisks with a kiss added. 

A sock puppet is someone who creates 2 identities on a forum so they can talk to each other, usually to stir trouble.

Now, I joe the gardener...he,has summed it up perfectly. None of us intentionally wants to upset anyone
hahahaha! Never really understood what a sock puppet was, now can't stop laughing!!!
Pennine Petal

Thank you for the information, I am learning so much more than gardening on this forum. I will watch out for sock puppets, are they easy to recognise? In late 60s or was it early 70s, I used to collect trolls, they were very popular.