Jump to content
Heather Mills - Amputee Forum
JohnnyV

Admin Statement

Recommended Posts

Thank you all for your patience in waiting for this statement.

Due to the increasing membership of this site and the increasing concerns from members I have appointed Moderators to assist me in dealing with these matters.

Over the past few months I have received a number of emails and pm’s about members concerns. Due to the recurring theme of the emails and pm’s, it was decided to set up security systems for the safety of the members and the site, to examine if those concerns were genuine.

I cannot reveal the details of the security systems, since I am not and will not be fully acquainted with them. I can only act on the final analysis of any information I am given.

As a direct result of the inquiries regarding members concerns, a number of members have been banned.

In the matter of Liliquoi, about the time her posts were deleted, someone unauthorised, tried to change her email settings, which automatically put her status as validating.

I have tried to establish exactly what was going on, but I received no positive response regarding this. Yesterday, I received a report from security informing me that in fact Liliquoi was on the board. Since Liliquoi has passed away some time ago, her account was suspended, then after consultation with Doggie (Administrator) it was decided to have her account banned.

In the matter of Johannah. I refer to her post:

‘Be careful what you ask’

Johannah says: “Thanks Johnny,

But considering that the guy never posts and is only on the site because he is a "devotee"...I doubt he'd consult/contact the Admin on the site.

But, thanks again...I'll let him know.”

I will ask you all to consider the following:

Anyone may request a removal from the site without having to give a reason.

Further Johannah states:

“First off, Noone is "harboring" anyone-I didn't however feel as if it were my "duty" to do anything about this other person's being here.”

I ask you all to consider this:

This site is family orientated, all age groups visit this site. I and my team do not believe that this site is for the gratification of devotees or any other such persons.

Johannah does not think she is harbouring a devotee? She does not have a duty to do anything about it?

Johannah has portrayed herself as a kind, caring person. A psychologist no less, and yet fails to understand that devotees cause harm. Devotee’s use pm’s to contact members, nurture and manipulate them for their own means! They also abuse the trust of members!

Would it not be the case as a person who displays caring to the members, she would have notified Administration!

So her ’duty’ clearly lies with the devotee and not any of the members or this site!

If I allowed her continued membership knowing where her ’duty’ lies, I and my Team believe that we would be failing everyone. If making this site as secure as we can and acting upon the concerns we receive from members is considered a witch hunt, we do not have a problem with that.

Finally, on behalf of my Team and myself, I would like to thank all those members who had the courage to come forward with their concerns.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You may be very correct in what you say Johnny, and who am I to judge I don't know all the facts and before you say it, it is none of my business. Reading what you have written above sounds like you are acting as judge, jury and exercusioner (can't spell it!). To be honest I don't think I would have the courage to come to you if had a problem, I would be too frightened of being banned from the site as I am due to have my amputation and would not get through it without help from you all on the site.

Maybe you should spend a little more time having private correspondence with Johannah rather than rush into banning her, even if she is not allowed the chance to responed publicly it can be done by email and sort this situation out, as to me it just seems like it has got out of hand.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi June

thankyou for your input.

I would like to refer you to the thread started by Johannah, 'Becareful what you ask'.

The contents of this thread were the private messages between Johnny and Johannah, of which you will observe that Johnny did try to resolve the matter.

It was Johannah's descision to make public the private messages without the permission of Johnny.

Also Johannah has made a public statement regarding her knowledge of a devotee on the site!

Johannah had decided that the devotee posed no threat!

So Johannah is actually the judge and jury, making a descision totally disregarding the welfare of the members and site.

I hope this helps you understand the situation more clearly.

best regards

Steve

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi,

Way to go Steve! I'm not going to add any comments about the situation. Just wanted to say that John does a great job here. He's incharge so that makes him judge, jury & executioner :ph34r: It's in the job description. A job, I'd like to point out, that he was "ASKED" to do.

Thanks for all you do!

Love,

Linda

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm not going to add any comments about what has happened either.

I believe Johnny has, from what i have read till now, handled this situation maturely and in the best interest of the forum and the members on here.

Someone has to do the dirty work. It can't be easy for him to make these decisions.

I would also like to compliment LauraG as moderator....good job! :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I totally agree with you Kaz, that its been handled in a proper manner, by both Johnny and Laura G, after all, they are only doing their jobs. Unfortunately it isn't always popular with some, but never the less, there are rules for everyone to follow and if some don't think they have to, then.......

Sheila LBK

Southern Maine USA

Keep Smiling :)

It is better to have failed at the attempt, than to have never tried.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am glad more people have now added to this thread. I have not known either Johannah or Johnny as long as the rest of you and the above posts helped me by showing be where your loyalty lies. I was nervous about logging back onto this site this evening to find what backlash I would get.

I commented originally because what I read seemed unfair, and as no other comments were coming in I felt very much out on a limb (pardon the pun) I would much rather be corrected in the way in which it been done on the posts above than to left wondering. This is the one downside of using a forum, waiting for answers and misunderstanding the written word.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I wasn't going to write anything either, but I just feel compelled to write.

Johnny deserves nothing but our respect AND our thanks. If it wasn't for him, freely giving his time as he does, this place wouldn't even be here. He is just doing his job, as the others have said above. Some might not agree with the outcome, but then, do they really know the full story? It's very easy to speculate about something we don't know much about. I urge you to please put your trust in our Administrator, he knows what he is doing.

This forum has provided support and information to many people. I, for one, credit this forum with giving me the knowledge of prosthetics that I have today, just 7 months after leaving hospital. Knowledge that was essential for me being an amputee. For example, because of this forum, I found out about all the different types of feet available to me, and will be getting the feet that I ordered next week, which I would NEVER have heard about before.

This forum has also introduced me to many other amputees and their experiences and knowledge, which, at times, has left me humbled. When I read about younger ones especially, surviving cancer (ie. Lizzie) or other illnesses that necessitate amputation (ie. Josh), I feel proud to be a part of the forum to which they belong. I admire their courage and bravery. I am glad that we are here for them. Just think of the difference we may have made to Josh's life! He now, because of the support of this forum, has a mountain of cards and letters to open!! :D He will also feel LESS alone in the future.

Then we have some of our adult amputees: Who CAN'T say that they are inspired when they hear that Brenda has run another marathon??!! OK, maybe we'll never do that, but it makes you feel that not all is impossible! There are many other examples. We are all here to support each other. This is a support forum.

I have always held this view, ever since I joined this forum. And also now that I am privileged to be part of the Moderating Team. Our desire is, and always will be, to KEEP this forum a safe, informative and friendly place, suitable for all the family.

I urge all members to think about what this forum has provided YOU, and how it has helped YOU personally. Then, maybe, we might all be slower in jumping to conclusions but quicker in putting our trust in our Admin., who has NEVER failed us before.

THANK YOU JOHNNY.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

To be honest I'm very concerned about the way things are going here. I feel bad that I started the ball rolling on this issue. My intention was to make people feel better about posting here and to warn people not to give out personal information.

I had the opisate effect and for that I'm very sorry. I've hurt a lot of people and the guilt I feel is high. But things are just being made worse now by administrators who want to parpeuate an atmospher of paranoia and guilt.

I feel that people who really diserve to be here are being banned and run off by mear suspition. I know Johnny is trying to do the right thing here. But he's going about it in the wrong way. I've volunteered to help with a real support groupe in Reno once a month. I'll be working with real people face to face. If you really need some suport there are many of these groups all over the world. I would sugest looking one up and attending if you don't want Devotees reading what you have to say.

I'm very angry with Johnny right now. Johannah is a friend of mine and I feel she was treated unfairly.

Eric

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have to say I side with Afet on this one. I appreciate all that johnny has done to get this site going, and keep it rolling, which means making hard decisions. I truly feel he is trying to do the right thing and support him fullly.

I appreciate having a safe place to come and learn, and share, and all the good I have found since I joined this site is a lot to johnnys credit and the atmosphere he has created for all of us.

Now I am going to go to other, more enriching posts, and spend my time there.

Judy

Utah

LBK

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I just got back from a really good bike ride and have given myself some time to think about what's going on. I have to say that Johnny has been and is doing a very good job with this web site. I simply disagree with the way he's handling the current problem. I like Jophnny and I do think he's doing a good job. Being mad is an indication that you care, and I really do care about this site. I just wish Johnny would be more fair

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree with Afet on this as well Johnny does a wonderful job with the forum. He volunteers his time which means he gets no pay! What he does to make this forum a safe haven for amputees is wonderful this is a place for us to come and share, support and above all to know you are not alone so lets not lose site of that. Having said this I am proud to be a part of this forum so I can contribute to it in a positive and meaningful way!

Thank You Johnny.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've always thought JohnnyV was a star. He has often helped me with things on this forum, as I'm sure he has many others. I am very glad he chooses to spend his time here and make everything run so well. This is a great forum, full of positive energy and kind, thoughtful people. Guarding our precious space from those who would like to taint it is work I very much appreciate. I will do my part to make it stay a great, supportive place to visit.

thisweek3.jpg

We ourselves feel that what we are doing is just a drop in the ocean. But the ocean would be less because of that missing drop *Mother Theresa

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm going to join in with the congratulations for Johnny. I've seen the development of this confusing issue from the start and along the way I've been nothing but amazed by the way our admin has handled the rather sticky issues at hand. It's been a learning experience for me, as has most of my time in this forum, both as a member and now as a moderator.

I also noticed people appreciating the way I handled this issue. Thank you for that vote of confidence. In all honesty, acting like I did was a tough call for me and I'm grateful it's been understood as an honest effort to keep our forum in relative calm in a rough bit. Thank you.

I also understand that some people may still have questions and I'm sure in time they will have answers. I can't offer anything more substantial than what our admin has already said, but I'll join those voices that trust there has been no better, fairer way to handle the situation than the way it's been handled. Because of that this forum has been in the past and will remain a place for open, productive, friendly exchange of knowledge, experience and support.

Thank you admins, fellow mods and fellow members. Thanks for caring, thanks for sharing, thanks for supporting and thanks for helping. :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

HAPPY FOURTH OF JULY!!!!!

I don't post all that often but i felt compelled to comment on the instant case. I just thought that maybe i should point something out,an observation. Please correct me if i'm wrong, and also realize that i'm fairly new to this forum and don't really know anyone in here all that well. In fact,this being a virtual reality can anyone really say they know any other person in here unless in fact they have met them IN PERSON. While i praise the existence of this forum and value the information and support it provides, i must also agree with ampskier in the fact that nothing beats face to face support meetings/groups and also to remind everyone that this is a virtual reality and that you should be very careful of your personal life if you don't wish to share it.

The main thing i wanted to say though is that from what i've read it seems to me Johanna came to Johnny with a question about someone wishing to un-register from this forum. That was the original question from her to him "how can someone un-register from this forum"? Johnnies replie was that in order to un-register one must go through the room "administration". That there was no button or application to un register. Johannas next post stated that she didn't think the person in question would do that because it was her feeling that he was a "devotee". As the conversation progressed it became apparent to me that Johanna didn't want to "turn in " this

person as perhaps she felt that they weren't disrespectful or offensive or abusive to her in any way but that they had admitted at some point to not being an amputee and were here in this group only because of other reasons. The next response from Johnny was to admonish Johanna for not wanting to take responsibility for exposing and banishing this person and to even suggest that Johanna was perhaps not being truthfull herself. Bottom line end result of this being that Johanna someone who has been here awhile and has offered not only peer support but also, due to the fact that she was a mental health professional, free counseling and professional support, being banned from the room. The end result of all of this is that a legitamate amputee member who was also a valuable mental health rescource has been banned from the room and the person in Question the "mystery devotee" for all we know is still here. I don't commend anyone for the way this turned out i think it turned out in the worse possible way. A peer group doesn't need a

"police force" to protect it from "infiltrators" a peer group should police themselve. One more lil thing then i'll go. WE as amputees would like to be viewed as equals in society , at least i think most of us would. Why when someone shows interest or curiosity in our situation are we offended by that ? We should "all" exhibit the tolerance that we wish society and the community would exhibit to us. Let's not be so quick to label someone and stereotype people.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

here here, I wish I could have put it like that myself ziggy :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Ziggy

thank you for your input.

You state:

In fact,this being a virtual reality can anyone really say they know any other person in here unless in fact they have met them IN PERSON

Further you state:

due to the fact that she was a mental health professional, free counseling and professional support

Now I'm a bit confused here, and maybe you can help me out a bit.

By your 'factual' statement, you know Johannah and presumably have met her?

Is this true?

If you only know her as a 'cyber' person, I would find your post extremely confusing.

Just reaching out here to get some kind of clarification.

This has confused me, and I've no doubt many others.

Thanks

best regards

Steve

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Didn't want to add anything - but feel I need to...

I agree with Afet and her comments are realistic and spot on.

Also, we do have younger members on this site - who are not worldly wide and are more acessible to those who would want to take advantage - and NONE of us want that. The site needs to be moderated and monitored to ensure contents are not harmful, grooming or disrespectful to those it is intended to assist.

I would not want to see an abuse of trust via PMs or otherwise. Most of us are cautious with information etc., privately available - but some are not as cautious and need to be aware of those who do not use this site for what it was, and is, meant for - advice, information, support, friendship etc.

Just my twopenneth worth.

Sue - Cardiff - UK

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ziggy and sue!!!!!!!

ya'll hit it right on the nose for me.

I wasnt going to comment on this subject.

But I guess I should.

To JohnnyV. I think he did a great job at handling these problems

to come here and make this forum as safe as possible is great!

He also helped me with problems a couple of times.

I mean with all this commotion. Someone didnt think I was who I was

saying I was. But JohnnyV took out of his time a considerable amount

to make me feel comfortable. I have learned a lot about being

cautious. I dont PM anymore. Sue you hit it right on the nose also,

when you said virtual reality you dont really know them, unless you see

them in person. I have learned about trust so thanks to everyone for helping

me learn about myself!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

To all the moderators I hope to learn more about all of you

Lesley

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think it is great the way this forum is run. I would never have come to the decision I have about having my amputation if I hadn't come across such, informative and caring people.

Just one thing does worry me. Last week I wasn't allowed to reply to any postings and had to reregister my name. Was this intentional and did someone ban me?

I am now very worried I have said something to upset someone, which believe me was totally unintentional, I would be mortified to think I had stepped out of line. Thanks for listening. I would be glad of any feedback.

Pam. :(

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I must admit to feeling torn on this issue.

First and foremost I cannot overstate my respect and admiration for Johnny and the moderators on these forums. They give their own free time (and at no pay either) to make this a caring and supportive environment. One that has no (online) equal in my view. The decision Johnny has taken is a very difficult one and I would not like to be in his shoes for anything.

Private messages are just that - private, and it is NEVER acceptable to make them public.

I am rather saddened that we have lost a member like Jo who was a good contributor to our forums. It has created a feeling of a police state but that is very often the price we pay to afford our own security. After all, in our society for every 10 criminals we put away one innocent person is incorrectly judged guilty (my guess, not empirical). This is the way the world works - we cannot have total freedom of speech without the 'bad' elements of society causing harm to others and we cannot have total security without affecting some innocent people.

I entered the term 'amputee devotee' into Google and was appalled at the results which came up. I think for the safety of our younger members it is probably wise we take a firm standing on this issue. It is certainly a difficult thing to monitor but at least we would be doing something rather than sitting back and saying 'its not my responsibililty'.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Very good point Mandy. The other day, I too did the same search. I was disgusted by what I read and saw.

I joined this forum quite innocently (I had just bought a home PC) and had never even heard of the term 'devotee' before, until it came up in the search for 'amputee.' I was glad that I found this forum as it seemed to be safe and free from all this 'dark stuff.'

Let's face it, to have lost a limb (or more), most of us have fought death. But we have survived. We may have lost our limbs by maybe an accident, disease, or any other illness or deformity. Then we find the forum and get to meet others in the same boat. Others that have survived in the same way, and get to share support, encouragement and information. Here we meet people who CAN understand us and what we are going through. (Who else can understand what phantom pain REALLY feels like!)

Personally, the last thing I want while I am here, is to feel intruded. And I don't mean by people who are NOT amputees. I mean by this, which ziggystdust said above:

Why when someone shows interest or curiosity in our situation are we offended by that ?

Well, as a female amputee who has very nearly died (and is trying to get on with her life although she has no hearing as well as legs), I DO NOT AND WILL NOT WELCOME SUCH "INTEREST" OR "CURIOSITY" FROM DEVOTEES OR WANNABES.

I find it very intrusive and offensive.

There are plenty of sites for these people to go to, to get their fulfilment. Why do they have to come here? It's easy for an ADULT MALE to have the same opinion as ziggy, but you have to bear in mind that most women and children do not share the same view, as well as most men.

And before anyone says, "Well, they don't SEEM to do any harm!" I ask you to consider the PM facility, and how it could be abused.

We ALL have to make a stand for members of this forum that feel like I do. And that is why I trust Johnny and am happy to part of the team that is trying to keep this forum as safe as possible, for every member. IT'S OUR DUTY TO DO SO.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think Johnny and the moderating team do an excellant job in very difficult circumstances. They give up their time to keep this site running smoothly. If anyone has a problem with any aspect of the site then that is where the problem is dealt with, but this can only be done with our help. If we have a problem we should be prepared to give as much information as possible to help the moderators decide the course of action that should be taken, how else can these things be sorted.

This is a virtual world and it is not easy to police what you cannot see, i suppose there is a lot of guess work involved but with as much help as possible decisions can be made and those decisions have to be respected.

I trust people unless given cause not to, i have had none of the problems with pm's. Those that have pm'd me have given me no cause to mistrust them, if i did have a problem i am grateful that Johnny and the others are there, willing to give up their time to help.

I think we owe the moderators a great deal of thanks not critisism(spelling?)

So from me to Johnny and all of the moderating team a big THANKS. :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

HAPPY 5TH OF JULY ......LOL

It gives me great pleasure to see that we can agree to disagree at times. For the last 29 years of my life i've been a steelworker and along with that a member of The United Seelworkers of America Union one of the things i'm proud of is the fact that on occasion i've been able to help folks get beyond their differences and organize themselves behind a common interest. We here in this forum,if we trust each other,and we have to trust each other,are united behind the issue of support and advocacy for amputees. One of the basic principles of a union or a guild or an advocacy group is that all members are equal !!! A group that has a tier membership is a CLUB not a union!!!!

Next i feel the need to respond to the comments made by doggie. In answer to the question "Do i know johanna in person"? the answer is "No" i don't and i assure you johanna and i have never "cybered" but i will say this i trust the folks who come in here to be honest , and i take them at their words. In a forum such as this, the way the world is today, there are always going to be a few that try to work the system, we as a "group" can keep this at a minimum by communicating with each other. The idea that we need a police force or a secret security system is just appaling to me!!!! What kind of union or advocacy group spies on it's members??? Also you,Steve, sent me an E-mail, along with permission to respond either publicly or privately to the questions asked

and the issues raised, i want to thank you for that and tell you i admire a person who can agree to dissagree on an issue,through that type of open and out front communication hurdles are overcome!!! THANK YOU.................MIKE

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

HELLO...IT'S ME AGAIN.....HAPPY 5TH OF JULY

Having only read as far as doggie post and having no space left on the previous page i need to reply here to Afet's remarks. To make it short and sweet i think i can say pretty much all of what i feel about your post in just one word TOLERANCE!!!!

How can we expexct to educate, and gain support from society if we are not tolerant of their interest and curiosity?

Also i would like to point out again that if all the parties involved in this incident are to be beleived and taken at their words, what we have is a situation where a fellow amputee has been "banned" from the room while the "devotee" remains. Unless someone has "un-registered" through the room "administration" then the sense that all is well and nice and warm and fuzzy is a false one!!!

PLEASE BY ALL MEANS FEEL FREE TO REPLY

KNOWLEDGE IS POWER

COMMUNICATION IS ESSENTIAL

THANK YOU...GOD BLESS YOU.....MIKE

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

×