In the life of every blog, there's days where things go haywire. Yesterday at TSF was one of those days. Things got heated, people dug their heels in further than heels were already dug, and it's safe to say nobody - mods, commenters, anybody - can look back at yesterday and say it was a good day in TSF's otherwise long and illustrious history.
We all know the root cause - Arsenal's inactivity in the transfer market. Whatever side of the debate you're on - and honestly, we all know everyone's stance by now, there's no need to rehash anything - I would ask a favor, a favor that I and the other mods will also try our best to adhere to.
From this point forward, if someone says something you disagree with about a topic that has been discussed quite a bit - be it transfers, injuries, or anything else that has hardened into a narrative at this point - take a step back first. Try to understand where the other party is coming from, and try not to view things through a predetermined narrative that you assume will never shift. We all know how it goes:
Person 1: I say a thing!
Person 2: I disagree with that thing! Strongly!
(three weeks later)
Person 1: I say a thing that is tangentially related to the other thing!
Person 2: YOU SAID THE SAME THING THREE WEEKS AGO WHY CAN YOU NOT SEE YOU'RE WRONG
(repeat every time Person 1 says a thing)
It happens on both sides - mod and commenter, pro- and anti-transfer policy, etc. Pick an Arsenal issue, and that very same discussion pattern will happen. Speaking only for myself here, as a mod I'm as guilty of that as anyone, and I will try to be better from this point forward - but in return, I ask the same of you.
We're all guilty of it. I'm not interested in apportioning blame for yesterday - I get some, regular commenters get some, other mods get some, guests get some, there was plenty to go around. Nobody's blameless, everyone got bent out of shape. That's not my point here.
My point is this: We all need to try to see various points of view before responding in the "usual way" (whatever your "usual way" is). I ask that we all avoid straw-man arguments as much as possible, and I mostly ask that we all - again, this is mods, commenters, everyone - be a little more civil than we were yesterday. Let's not micro-analyze, cherry-pick, or otherwise weaponize other people's words just to win a two-line internet fight about something stupid.
There's no need to be hostile, even when a debate gets passionate there's still room for all of us to understand that we are, ultimately, here for the same reason - we're Arsenal fans, and we want Arsenal to do well.
The anonymous internet can be a rough place, and I want TSF to be less rough. I will do my part to make sure that happens. 99% of the time, it is; let's all work on the 1%. Disagreements are of course going to happen, and that's OK; I just want to make sure that when they do, days like yesterday aren't repeated, and it's on all of us - regular commenters, mods, guests, ALL OF US - to make sure that they aren't.
NOTE: Comments for this article are turned off, because I don't want to rehash yesterday - I want to move forward, and the best way to do that is not to wallow in what happened. The season starts in 48 hours - let's get behind that, shall we?