Why the CodeGear newsgroup censorship sucks
I'll try to make this short. Borland/CodeGear runs newsgroups, and they run them on their own server. Their server, their rights.
All well, but a community discussion forum obviously isn't of much worth without a community. That's why there are rules. Rules that forbid insults and things like that.
To enfore the rules, a bunch of years ago Borland has founded a group of volunteers to assist the community, and to step in in case communication get's out of control.
Here is a quote from http://info.borland.com/newsgroups/teamb/:
"TeamB was created more than 10 years ago as an experiment in
encouraging advanced users of Borland products to answer other
users' technical support questions. The original plan was
So much for the theory. In practice, for the last years many TeamB members have left Borland/Codegear, just as many customers have. From the few members left, some have meanwhile noticed that CodeGear just doesn't care anymore, and that they may do whatever they want.
For example, spending all day on the newsgroups, but not helping anyone anymore, but instead cancelling messages by people they don't like.
The master of this newsgroup moderation abuse is Rudy Velthuis - he actually appears to spend day after day in a special off-topic group that seems to only exist on Borland's servers as a playground for him.
Sadly, from time to time he comes over to the delphi.non-technical newsgroup to cancel messages of people that tend to be critical of CodeGear's moves - out of the blue he quite often destroys productive discussions without ever telling anyone why he did that.
Many of his victims during the last years at some point decided to simply quit the newsgroups. Borland/CodeGear has received numerous complaints about Rudy's abuse of moderation powers, but as always, CodeGear prefers to ignore problems until they are too late.
In a discussion thread about the currently re-published Delphi roadmap (which had disappeared after the last customer uproar that happened the last time they posted their questionable plans for the future of Delphi), the following two replies to questions into my direction got cancelled by him.
This one is about CrossFPC, a project I had been working on (and am working on again now) to integrate the FreePascal compiler into the Delphi IDE. Meant as a replacement for CrossKylix. No reason for the cancel was given - probably because it's simply a critical post, and as there is no violation of newsgroup rules in that, no reason can be given:
Donald, >> Actually, nothing people are asking about is "innovation". After all, >> the innovation has been done by others for the last years - may it >> be Chrome, may it be FreePascal or Microsoft Visual Studio. >> > > Simon, i send you a email about CrossFPC. Theres any chance to > colaborate there? Is the project dead? CrossFPC has been suspended for 2 years - basically during the time I still believed CodeGear's promises, the last one being Michael Swindell's "We'll present our Linux plans in May". I've now a developer working on it again. I'm not replying to any of the dozens "Can I join the betatest" mails for CrossFPC I get per week. The beta we had ready 2 years ago would have needed to get the CLX usage rights from Borland/CodeGear (another broken promise), because it contained a few Kylix units to ensure compatibility. This is why there never has been a public beta. We'll now make sure that CrossFPC is completely free of any CodeGear- copyrighted source (although that means that Kylix applications can't be simply recompiled, but need to be adapated a bit) and then release it. I'll let the community know when this is the case. Until then please don't bug me with "can I join the betatest" mails, as there is no legal way to do such a thing. Simon
The other reply has been about the opinion, that CodeGear is lacking in resources to make Delphi a relevant competitor in the devtools market again:
Michael, > But for that they have to do significant investments first, to make up > leeway. And then it's time for innovations to have a unique selling point. > I believe that there is a solid base to build on - and there is still hope. > But the current roadmap shows that they have to use their manpower to catch > up current standards - and in 2009, when Delphi provides generics and a 64 > bit compiler, they still will be 2 years after nowadays innovations. > I think they need a feature, no-one else provide it today. A "we need it, > so we have to switch to Delphi"-feature. > And I cant find such a feature in the current roadmap. True, probably they would have needed a 3-step-plan like - Get funding to be able to catch up again with the competition - Catch up with the competition - Get a unique selling point over the competition / innovate My personal proposal on what a unique selling point could be is "Allow native cross-compilation to other targets than Win32", I've outlined this early this year here: http://delphiroadmap.untergrund.net/A_cross-platform_vision_for_Delphi/index.html But obviously, there could be lots of other USP. In the past the VCL has been the USP of Delphi/C++Builder. The VCL still is great, but with the .NET framework as competition, it's nothing unique anymore (and in some areas looks dated). Simon
This first got cancelled with the reason "blog spam" (oh well. The linked article has been discussed before and is as on-topic as it could get). So I removed the link, and reposted it. This time it got cancelled without any reason given in the cancel message.
For 24 hours, I've then always manually reposted both messages after they got cancelled. Rudy cancelled it, I reposted it, and so on.
On the second day, Rudy now started cancelling other posts from me on the newsgroups, and in general all posts from people complaining about this kind of censorship got cancelled, too.
And this is where I decided to escalate the situation so people are able to see what's going on - due to the complaints about censorship getting cancelled, Rudy and the rest from TeamB tried to make the newsgroup look like their moderation abuse had never happened.
Since yesterday I'm now fighting a quite silly cancel war with them. So yeah, it's childish, and I could have just stopped and walked away - but it just doesn't suit my feeling of justice to let such a moderation abuse system win without any backfighting.
Ok, so now you know my side of the story, and you may go back to the public newsgroup. Just remember that if one day you should become an unhappy customer you better take your complaint to a blog, the web or simply vote with your wallet - the times when such things could be discussed inside the community are gone.
CodeGear - be happy or be cancelled.
(P.S.: Sadly CodeGear doesn't want you to see my side of things - Obviously any attempts by me to post this URL into the newsgroup so people can read also my view of things got cancelled, too. Sorry about the reposts.)