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Recent Site Abuse

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StepTalk Users,

The StepTalk staff has been receiving an increasing number of complaints from users regarding blatant violations of our Terms of Use by other users of this site, including but not limited to harmful, threatening, hateful, and otherwise objectionable behavior and general abuse of this site and its users.

Although we have been extremely lenient (arguably too lenient) regarding the enforcement of our Terms of Use in the past, it’s clear that we must now take actions, again, to resolve these issues in order to provide a safe place for users to interact. Although it will be difficult to catch them all, and we will not be able to catch them all, we will take action where evidence is found to support claims.

Our approach to this will be simple. We simply do not have the resources to fully investigate all details of all confrontations, so we have no option but to take action against a user based on their behavior, period. Any user that we find engaging in behavior that violates our terms of use will be removed from the site at our discretion, including having their IP address blocked. You are no longer welcome here. If you return, your actions will be considered trespassing and will be addressed accordingly.

The primary purpose of StepTalk is to provide a platform for stepparents, and those in step parenting related situations, to vent, discuss their situations, get help, and provide help to others. Venting about parenting problems involves emotions and often volatile situations that can often provoke heated discussions and debate. Discussions and debate are healthy and constructive, but arguments and hateful behavior is not acceptable or welcome. We believe strongly in free speech, but when your free speech violates the rights of others you’ve crossed a line and you will no longer be welcome in our community.

So, that said, we need help finding the abusers of our site. First, read and understand our Terms of Use. If you are experiencing or have witnessed abusive behavior by another user on the site please report it to us. You can report abuse by sending a PM to Dawn, or sending an email to Please provide links to the offending content posted on the site, screen shots if necessary, etc. We will not take action on reports that do not provide us with evidence. If you have reported abuse in the past without resolution, please report the abuse again with supporting evidence (links to content, screen shots of PMs, etc.) and we will attempt to resolve the issue. False reports (including miss-flagging of content or users) will be treated as a violation of our terms and will be dealt with accordingly. You're wasting our time and we don't like that. User tenure on this site will have NO IMPACT on our decision to remove abusers.

A note on flagging: Flagging users or content that you find offensive does not count. We live in a big world, with many cultures and subcultures. What one may find offensive, others may not have any issue with. We are generally interested in identifying abusive, threatening, or otherwise harmful and hateful behavior against the site and its users. If you choose to use the flag feature, please flag the content, not the user as this will help us identify the evidence of abuse.

It is not the duty of our users to determine the validity or truthfulness of other users posted stories, etc. If you don’t believe a blog or forum entry to be truthful, let it go, it is not your job to police this site. Many users come from extremely different situations, many of which few can imagine to be true, but often are. Some users often don’t feel comfortable posting actual details of their situation and will intentionally modify the details to avoid being identified. Labeling other users as “crew”, or otherwise accusing users of posting false statements will be considered abusive behavior, in violation of our terms of use.

One last note to the abusers. We’re smart people and we know you’re smart as well. Behaving in “grey” areas of our terms of use, i.e. using passive-aggressive behavior to attack other users can and will have consequences if we catch you, at OUR discretion.

We sincerely hope that these actions will help make StepTalk a better place to interact. Unfortunately the Internet is full of bad people, and people that generally can’t get along with others. We’ll always have to deal with them at some point. We hope to be implementing better privacy settings and controls that will give users the ability to control who can see their content and otherwise interact with them. Until then, we have to take such drastic measures to keep StepTalk usable for all.

Our advice to users are that if you experience abusive behavior, ignore it then report it. Do not contribute to the abuse. Follow my grandmother’s advice: if you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything. Let us take care of the abusers. We will do our best to clean up the site.