A few more thoughts...
I would like to make it clear that I still view EpicSki as a positive resource. Despite my earlier comments regarding the level of moderation, I commend the moderators for doing what is pretty much a thankless job.
But I do have strong feelings about EpicSki... I would like to make a few observations, and please do not take them as being subversive.
"There are thousands of people who access EpicSki who would like nothing better than to take it down, either temporarily or permanently. Some try to do it by technological attacks, others by personal attacks, and still others by trolling or poisoning content."
I think that you have gone a little overboard with this comment.
I don't think there are that many people who really care that much about EpicSki to try to "take it down". Sure, there are those who will try to attack any site with technology, just for the pleasure of destroying others hard work and enjoyment, rather than producing something positive of their own.
And certainly there might be a few who disagree so vehemently with some of the ideas propogated here, that they would love to see it shut down, in favor of their own ideas.
As for trolls... they are a part of life. Though a bother at times, most trolls realize that if they were to shut down sites such as EpicSki, they would have no platform on which to bait others into various arguments!
"EpicSki is a volunteer-run site that pays its hard costs from support given by Supporters. This situation is why it takes us a long time to get some things done. Frankly, we'd like to make it easier and faster to add some of the content ideas we've been trying to get done for a while, but time and money have gotten in the way (we're getting closer, tho!)."
I beg to differ! EpicSki is a COMMERCIAL site, which uses voluteers as Moderators. It has owners who have invested money in it. Commissions, revenue generating events, sales/auctions, and donations all contribute to the bottom line. Whether they actually make a profit overall is another issue. But let's not snow ourselves into believing it is anything but a commercial site.
In addition, the degree of advertising which occurs is another point that it is being used in a commercial sense. I'm not saying advertising is wrong. But in the early days, private advertising in ANY context was outlawed by the policies of the site, and regularly enforced. I was unaware that this had changed. If this policy has changed, come out and state the policy and procedure clearly. I think everyone will accept it as one of the evils of doing business and generating income. But I think popups and banners will be the proverbial straw, driving members away.
" It is my stated policy that we moderate as little as necessary, and we endeavor to do that."
My question to this is a simple one. Is this YOUR policy, or the policy of EpicSki? As EpicSki Patrol Director, do you make/set policy? Or merely implement the policies of those further up the food chain? I do respect the fact that at this point you have finally asked for feedback from the community.
Ultimately, rules are rules, policies are policies. As long as they are clearly stated, enforced equally and fairly, then they should stand.
(...trips while getting off soapbox.....)