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Memorial threads

Memorial threads- how to bring out the best  

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None of us are getting any younger, and my communities have lost a few people lately. As the years go past we'll lose more.

Is it a good time to put up a discussion so we can promote some kind of recommended or standard of behaviour for online memorials here at SAB?

So far we've been pretty mixed in a few of our responses here. To me that kinda feels like a disrespect to the wider community, some of whom could be grieving but yeah I can see both sides re. sanitising someone's life. No point in stifling relevant discussion either. If all of us were saints we wouldn't be here ;)

Regardless of whether you liked and respected someone or not, their place in the ecosystem needs to be respected. And friends of yours could be hurting because they're gone. Additionally while emotions are running high it's easy to misinterpret the printed word, or establish unnecessary enmities that extend well beyond

Personally I'm a strong believer in a minute's silence. And if you can't think of anything good to say etc, no need to rub salt into people's eyes while they're weeping. Public space can be a good place to help people heal. Say what you will privately between friends, but keep it clean and let others get over it for a bit, then business as usual

Maybe sandbox specific memorial threads so that people can post and share their good memories? Keep them focussed.

Honestly I have no ideas as to how to handle this, and welcome yours

Edited by Darklight
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recent posts regards Will upset me.

I broke the rules knowingly due to the strength of the feelings resulting from the posts.

I would not have debated that the post were accurate but still felt that they shouldn't have been posted.

I see the memorial posts as belonging to the family of the deceased.

Don't debate that people have a right to state how they feel, but others also have a equal right to form the opinion that they are assholes for not holding their tongue.

I think a period of silence before negative post would be helpful as the grieving would not be so upset, but the inevitable result of that would be that the last posts in a memorials post would end up being negative and that wouldn't be good either.

In the end I think people should be able to write what they want but should understand that what they write in these threads will have a greater impact on the how people see them then post in other threads.

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I agree with what you have both said.

I dont think people should be posting their issues with others in memorial threads at all. As an example, Will was brought up or mentioned relatively often here, with a thread a few weeks before his death in relation to his rants on AE. If these topics are being brought up and no one bothers to have their say there, then why bother to say nasty things in the memorial thread? It seems twisted and also like Ramon mentioned if the families come across it, it must be awful for them.

And if someone doesnt like another or has whatever problems with their personality who gives a shit? The need for people to bitch and moan about others is a greater reflection of their personal issues and Im sure this board wasnt designed as a platform for people to complain about others. People need to learn to let go of their grudges IMO. We could all talk about the shit that makes us angry and annoyed but how miserable would that be.

I know internet forums are famous for people saying things they wouldnt normally say face to face and we cant really stop that but I would support the idea of some set of guidelines being implemented for memorial threads. Or better still people could just learn to forgive and move on.

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Complex issue and my views are probably not shared by most. While I feel there is certainly some need to comfort and protect those in grief, I also feel there needs to be a reality to it all. When people last year tried to gloss over denis' womanising and lack of responsibility they discarded a lot of who he was, how he interacted, and what was most likely the cause of his death. To talk about him in such idealised terms just didn't make sense. Ditto for Will. His strong opinions often went too far for some, but that is why many loved him and others didn't. To deny these attributes doesn't make sense.

I don't believe in life after death, so for me there is no consideration of the dead person. It is about their memory in the eyes of others - both friends and not.

One of the motivations of doing good in life is to be remembered for those good deeds. The same motivation also prevents us from doing bad things. If no one ever talks about the bad things then what motivation do we have to not be bad? Will frequently wished me dead, often wished other people dead [or raped, or tortured], and sometimes rejoiced at the death of others. This is not something that most people do - in fact, the frequency was quite unique. Maybe if he hadn't then others would respect his death more. It has certainly made me a lot less inclined to intervene for him in his 'memorial' thread.

A few people PMed me about stuff they wanted to write in that thread and I asked them not to. Those who did write critical things were immediately attacked even though in at least one instance it was a misunderstanding. I feel that more damage was done in that thread by the people who tried to defend Will than those who posted something slightly critical. The defenses prompted wider discussions which could have been avoided. After all, it is the original poster that the post reflects on. The grandstanding by some who wanted to suppress and censor others did not improve the final outcome. I presume it helps with the self importance issues in the same way a 15-post member requests account deletion in that thread. If all these protectors of Will's honour would have just ignored the opinions they didn't quite agree with then maybe I could have gone in later and cleaned the thread up for posterity. The grandstanding has made this pretty much impossible.

A good example of how ignoring is much better for the final outcome is the exchange between Mr Pink and Ramon. Mr Pink made a statement somewhat inappropriate for a memorial thread and ramon insulted him for it. If that insult had stood then half the thread would have been about the exchange. Ramon removed the insult and now Mr Pink just looks like a dick on his own merit.

And just in case anyone wants to criticise me for what I wrote, stop for a moment and think about what Will would have written if the tables were turned. I think he got off lightly :blink:

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I think that people should do their best to forgive others if they say silly out of place things and maybe just point out in a kind way or even better yet,... better ignore that they said something out of place, except if they are deliberately insulting. But that can be difficult for people if they are in an emotional state sometimes I guess.

A memorial thread would be a good idea.

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Complex issue and my views are probably not shared by most.

It was your views that prompted me to finally write this. I understand them and while I don't agree with them en masse I see where you're coming from and respect the point you're making very much.

It's also why I'm trying to open up discussion about what we'd all like to see in future. We mightn't get consensus on this but we might get enough agreement to avoid possible shit fights in future- so far I don't think this has been a serious issue

Dealing with death as a community is a part of our coming of age as a responsible and cohesive group of adults

I've been to what feels like a truckload of funerals and wakes lately. Some of those have been for people I haven't particularly cared for, but my presence has been specifically requested because 1) they were close to people I do care about who appreciate the support and 2) as the recipient of a large amount of support from my communities people seem to feel it both important and beholden on me that I return that support to the people around me, which is fair enough IMO. It's made me rethink my previous stance on what I'd hope to see in the people close to me, how we treat each other.

In doing so I acknowledge that whoever is in the box on the day wasn't perfect, and at times may have been a complete dick, but at worst managed to maintain just enough of a role within the group for that role to be valuable regardless of my opinion. It isn't my job to make things worse, any idiot can do that. It takes skill and kindness and understanding to make things better. Not perfect, but better

In saying this there are graves I would happily dance on. Hell, a few I'd take up ballet for and YouTube. I see no reason to forgive or forget on the mere basis of how dead someone is. But not at the funeral or wake, not in the face of family and friends at that time, and the thing about the persistence of ugly words typed in public ( as opposed to stuff that blurts out at the wake ) is that they create a different focus and perpetuate a negativity that outlives any mere dead miscreant

One of the motivations of doing good in life is to be remembered for those good deeds.

Dear goddess no. The whole idea gives me the horrors. What people will remember about us all is entirely out of our control. Just do good shit anyhow I reckon

If that insult had stood then half the thread would have been about the exchange. Ramon removed the insult and now Mr Pink just looks like a dick on his own merit.

Funny how that works hey ;)

So I take it you're not in favour of the idea of sandboxing memorial threads T? I was thinking of them as a safe space for the benefits of friends and families, a period of grace on negative comments and then business as usual after a while in all other threads. That could also be construed as too formal or too complicated as well as possibly hypocritical but I'm interested in alternatives, including status quo

Anyone else have any ideas?

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Seriously, if you have an opinion or idea on this and haven't contributed, please do so. It *is* a complicated issue and sometimes a delicate one, but I hope it won't come up again for a while, so we'll have heaps of time to discuss it

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After all, it is the original poster that the post reflects on

Do you know I don't agree with that statement at all. The quality of the ensuing discussion reflects on the OP more than the content of the original post reflects on it's author.

It's too easy online to post something and have it misunderstood. How the OP responses to subsequent requests for clarification, support, attacks etc is far more telling IMO than anything they may have posted in haste

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I am fine with sandboxing if that's the majority view. it is ultimately a form of censorship though that one needs to be mindful of. eg, take the westboro nuts for example - even the US supreme court is struggling with that extreme of free speech at funerals. I think sandboxed memorial threads should be clearly marked as such and there should be the freedom for others to start threads that are not protected like that. Grieving friends don't need to look at those.

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I say this while purposefully caring nothing about the situation: What happened to "if you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all"? If there's no better place to follow such a sentiment, surely it's a memorial thread??

Why stoop to the level of someone whose done you wrong by belittling them in a memorial thread when they have no way to answer for themselves? A person has passed, LET IT GO. They don't care anymore; why should you?

Edit: "you" generic, not aimed at anyone specifically. I stopped reading that thread after the first page.

Edited by FancyPants
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What happened to "if you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all"?

Well that makes for pretty dishonest conversation, only ever openly recognizing one side of a situation.

To me, more important than being polite, traditional, or liked is to evaluate the reality that presents itself and learn from it.

If I didnt acknowledge and learn from the mistakes that lead to the death of an uncle I'd have less incentive to actively try to root out whatever remaining prejudice and propensity toward reflexive anger is in me.

If I didnt acknowledge and learn from the mistakes that lead to the death of my father I'd have less of a drive to work to keep myself away from clinical depression, drug addiction problems, and a torturously slow suicide.

Death is the punctuation mark that ends the story of someones life. When that story is complete is when we can best learn its lessons of good and bad. It should be the time we look at someone most honestly.

By that I dont mean we should be free to flippantly insult the dead, thats just a sign of a weak and deluded mind IMO, rather we should look at their life in a mature and thoughtful way.

If family members are not ready to see people discussing the dead in a civilized and mature, but honest and inquisitive way, they can simply choose to not read the post.

I also think people often take it too seriously. I'd prolly get a good laugh out of my memorial thread- some people exaggerating my intellect or calling me a dumb yank, some people going totally off the mark and talking about my government being behind 9/11, several people being like 'Auxin? I think I have a plant from him!' and teotz making some sort of list that fills an entire page. :P

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[email protected] Teotz's lists... but seriously I'd laugh at my own memorial thread likely too, arrogant, ignorant biatch that I am ;) And I agree with pretty much all you said except for the first line first paragraph, and last line second paragraph. I just don't agree that an RIP thread (perhaps we're confused on a notification thread vs RIP?) is a place to air disagreeances. Perhaps my family wouldn't want to read some of the stupid mistakes I"ve made (and I actually tell my parents a fair bit of what I do) by stumbling across my name somewhere online.

From the strong reactions by some (who I'd personally consider) very good people here, I don't doubt there are good reasons for the vitriol, but I dunno, I guess I just think there's a time and place for certain things.

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Thanks for your contributions so far everyone.

Perhaps I should start a poll and see if we can get a clearer idea of what's happening? We're only getting 10% of responses vs drive by views so clearly there are more people out there watching and it's not a majority view yet. IMO more ppl are likely to click on a poll button than express views in type

Lol re vitriol- this thread was seriously not started aimed at anyone except maybe extending the discussions with T. I'd like to keep it that way. I really have been to a bucketload of funerals lately, all sorts of people

And I would hate to read any of my memorial posts. And if Teotz writes me a list I will personally return to earth and hum tunelessly in his ear til he goes insane. But when I kark it, I totally demand you all get up there and tell all the stories. I'm sick of being on the edge of the crowd where everyone mutters that they have some awesome stories which would make everyone smile, but won't repeat them for the sake of the family. Fuck that. Share laughter. Just protect the names of the living

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I don't think there's a need for drastic changes. The only real motivator for change as I can see it is "negative" comments to the deceased. Well, as long as they're true then I think they have a right to exist. A compromise could be some form of post-minimizing (a la Youtube) if it's offensive to those who vote. Maybe this format could be selected for all threads designated "sensitive" by the OP.

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Seriously, if you have an opinion or idea on this and haven't contributed, please do so.

While I can see the rationale behind some of the opinions so far, I personally see no need for bringing up negative past in a memorial thread. It just not necessary.

The people who knew him and interacted with him were well aware of the issues. And for those that didn't know him, well he's dead now isn't he so what does it matter, it's not like you're protecting yourself by finding all this out. And it's not like someone will write a book about him, and by you not speaking up to correct people now, then you're contributing this illusion of sainthood that will be published and admired for generations.

So who fucking cares?

Who cares if a bunch of noobs post a one-liner expressing their sympathy for someone they never met? They're not trying to spread misinformation, there are not being malicious, they are just being polite. I think people see that for what it is. Do they need to be corrected? Is the world really better off without him? Is his kid better off growing up without a father? He was part of this community, even if he didn't get along with most.

It's just common decency not to slander someone in their memorial thread. Hell, there's plenty to be found other threads so you won't need to search far should you wish to contribute to one. It's really quite a simple concept I think. Like saying please and thank you, or getting off you're couch when a visitor first walks into a room to greet them. Necessary? Perhaps not. Polite? Definitely.

I'm not defending what he did or didn't do, I'm simply saying that a memorial thread is not the place to bring it up.

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After reading the posts and rethinking, I think things are fine the way they are now.

So no memorial thread needed,..but "ballet dancing on a grave" hell yeah!!! :-)

People should be free to post whatever they want here,.. and get told that they are out of line by respected members or even downright flamed (perhaps better said,.. put on their place) if they are really asking for it.

I think most of us here are mature enough,..If we are perceived as respectable we get a hand when we fall,... sometimes we fall and just get left on the ground when we write stoopid or silly things,.. and other times when we fall we get another kick to the ass if we are out of line!

nature sorts itself out!

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OK I added a poll

If this needs to go to Site and Forum now I don't mind

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recent posts regards Will upset me.

same here.

that thread really disgusted me. i truely believe a modocum of respect is required.

i mean every human has done good and bad in their lifetime, however i think people who are grieving do not need to be reminded of the bad qualitys.

i really think that emorial threads should focus on the good and positive aspects of someones life.

but anyways thats only my opinion.

if yall write shit about me when i die im gonna come back and skullfuck u in your sleep.

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I'm not voting because my option is not there. I believe in a balance of truth and protection of the grieving [with emphasis on the latter, but not at any cost]. #2 does not imply consideration for others in any way so I can't vote for that.

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Recent posts about Will upset and angered me also.

I wholeheartedly believe in a period of grace, it's not much to ask for. A modicum of respect as Incognito put it.

As for not saying anything if you've nothing nice to say...well, having been to more funerals and wakes than weddings in my life, it is one thing to bitch and be nasty, another to discuss a persons flaws and inadequacies with honesty, compassion and kindness.

None of us is perfect.

In my opinion it's just plain mean and vindictive cataloguing the failings of someone who has just died in, of all places, their memorial thread!

To be perfectly honest, I am appalled.

There is a way to talk about, express, our complex and at times conflicting views and feelings about others in a balanced way. We can talk about them as the whole person, warts and all, neither focusing exclusively on the positive or negative...though the former will fall into sharper relief for the people who truly love(d) that person.

Let them have that grace. They deserve it.

Being close to the deceased person they, more than anyone, are aware of their faults and flaws...sniping in a memorial thread, especially given any unresolved tension or 'controversy' during the persons life, is simply unfair and unwarranted.

I agree with other posts above - people can purge their resentment and unresolved issues elsewhere, and learn to practice some self-restraint.

Would you deface a grave or cenotaph? Well on the net, for some people, memorials are just as meaningful.

There are plenty of other ways to vent your spleen. No need to cork it up - but in my view there's a time and a place.

I hope when I shuffle off this mortal coil, which given the docs prognosis may be alot sooner than I had anticipated, that my beautiful daughter doesnt log on here and find posts blathering on about some unresolved petty shit from years ago or saying what a terrible person I was.

Sorry to not be more diplomatic here folks, but ffs.

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T doesn't come across to me as vindictive or mean kind of person.

LOL, I definitely can be, but it takes a lot more than the mess with Will to get me there. But such was not my intention or goal, neither in that thread specifically nor about Will in general. I think most people who knew Will and me from before the dramas would know that. It's just a few who like to highlight our differences far beyond what they were.

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I'm sorry I came across so strong, but having been given a terminal cancer diagnosis, and more recently been referred to palliative care, this is a sensitive issue for me as you might imagine.

Also, my own personal experience losing a loved one to overdose, and having to face the judgement of others, especially some peoples views that his death was somehow worth less because he chose to use illicit drugs, also makes this a sticky point for me.

There was some bitterness after he died. Some friends and extended family had 'unfinished business' with him, and I ended up on the receiving end. It was very difficult. So I guess I dragged some of that into this thread.

Tortsen knows, I hope, that I have a great deal of love and respect for him, but I do feel some posts were overly focused on negatives, or articulated certain things in a way that lacked sensivity and tact. Woodragon managed to capture Wills personality in a balanced way without sounding harsh or mean, just honest and heartfelt.

Sometimes it's not so much what someone says, but how they say it. Even with good or 'neutral' intent, words can hurt without heart. And I think of young Oscar, and I wouldnt want him to be reading some of those posts right after his Dad has died.

I have to say that from where I stand, coming to terms with the immanence of my own death and losing all I've held precious in this life, knowing I may not see my daughter grow up and not be here for her to protect her, I have raised her on my own and her father is on the other side of the world... I care a great deal about her welfare when I'm gone, and this includes how other people may 'memorialise' me and how this may effect her.

Children may not have the insight into adult behaviour you hope your daughter would have if you should die.

I dont actually think I've caused anyone that much bother in my life, so I dont imagine there'd be a great deal of bitching. I have myriad flaws and faults, and heaven knows I can be an utter cow...but I dont think I've caused too much hurt along the way....but I stand by opinion that mourning people deserve compassion and a period of grace - and there most definitely IS a time and a place for venting anger and/or unfinished business if you want to spare innocent people unneccesary suffering.

In my mind it's a small courtesy we can all afford to extend to our fellow human beings.

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^^^ Beautifully put. I hope you (and your family) find peace in your situation.

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although I was upset by some of the posts i saw about Gom as I had many positive dealings with him myself I belive others have the right to speak about him as they will. Its what he would have done! speaking your mind is honoring his spirit in a way i suppose.

How others choose to honor or speak about the dead speaks volumes about who they are themselves, and how others may choose to remember them one day.

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