Thursday, July 04, 2013

A Member Slams SLAP

    Social media in this small state of ours have become a haven for every Tom, Dick and Harry, who have the urge to disrespect and honest person who have used their legitimate name to join  one or two of the social mediums. Fb is particularly noted for this as on good friend of mine once said that new profiles are being created every time you post an article on facebook.
    This is so glaring in the race for political leadership of the UWP. All sorts of bogus names come up in defense  or support for either King or Chastanet. Some of them  are so saturated with bullshit, that it leaves one to wonder whether these persons posting under these pseudo name are being paid to do so.
This bring me to the point of a posting on the St Lucians Aiming For Progress (SLAP). This group, though I presume has its political bias, encourages all Lucians to join and become a member.
   What however is beyond justification is the slandering of members whom other members in the group suspect to be on the other side of the divide. This has escalated to a level that a member who was slandered, had to write to SLAP with this post.
"I joined SLAP to contribute to what I expected to be lively, constructive and intelligent discussions on moving our country forward. While I am cognizant of what I would call the political bias of the group ( I stand corrected), I welcomed the challenge of productive and vigorous debate. What I did not expect is the insults and false, unsubstantiated accusations that is intended only to silence my contribution to this forum. I will not subject myself to this treatment, especially when the accusers conceal their identity behind the cloak of pseudonyms. My fellow SLAP contributors how would you feel to be repeatedly called thief and worse by 'ghosts' while the world looks on. I am a business man, a professional, an active community person, a father, a son etc I must protect my interest and those that I am responsible for. I cannot have to constantly defend myself against such spurious slandering. If I am guilty of any wrong doing or deemed to have transgressed the laws of the land, then this in my opinion is not the appropriate forum for litigation. This is a very destructive precedent being set here. I call on the Administrators, Minerva Ward, who accepted me as a member to this group to intervene immediately so that the integrity, function and longevity of this group is not hijacked for ulterior purposes other than those it was conceived for."
An adminstrator of the group replied with this statement:
  • "I absolutely agree ............... It is very unfortunate that some people use social media (this group included) as a way of tarnishing the reputation of others while hiding behind a pseudonym to do so. We allow people to contribute without using their actual names because we do realize that some people (because of job or otherwise) may not be able to speak out as freely as they would like. However, this is something that ............. and I will have to review in light of continued complaints. We would like this group to be a forum for spirited debate and discussion, but take libelous statements very seriously and do not tolerate it in this group. Thank you for bringing this to our attention (as it is impossible for us to monitor this page 24/7). I have permanently banned the offending member from the group and ensured that all libelous posts are deleted." Bravo, way to go.

    The statement by the offending member attracted  twenty-one likes and five comments.

         Since then SLAP has issues a statement. It goes as follows: 
    SLAP was created as a forum for the discussion of ideas to move St Lucia forward, hence the name "St Lucians Aiming for Progress". It is also a forum for the respectful, spirited discussion and healthy debate of politics and issues of the day. That being said, there are rules governing this group: (1) no obscene language (2) no libelous statements of any person whether in this group or not (3) discussions should be kept respectful without personal attacks (4) content must be in keeping with the purpose for which this group was created. 
        Please note that we take libelous statements very seriously and persons engaging in such will be evicted from the group and comments deleted. If you have an issue with someone kindly address it to the right channel (the police, the courts, the Integrity Commission). This group is NOT the place for that! As neither Rohan F St Marthe nor myself can monitor the page 24/7, if something does require our attention, please tag us in a post so we can address it.
        Please let us continue the discussion with all our 'Lucian' energy, colour, vibe, spirit and comradery whilst giving others the respect we would like for ourselves.
        Thank you.
    Recently the government of Grenada went to parliament to seek redress against clients who post slanderous statements on social media. st Lucia may soon have to adopt this position. but like Rick wayne said over newsspin sometime ago, going  after these persons who write these libelous stements on social media is a long and drawn out process.

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