Attn: All Catster/Dogster members
Re: Catster's new policy regarding advertisers
Catster HQ has been kenneling (temporarily taking offline) member pages that post links to recalls, update others on kenneling of friends' pages, inform others of poison food (by brand name, i.e. Nutro, or in general) that advertises on Catster/Dogster, and/or post testimonials of adverse reactions to poison food that is advertised on Catster/Dogster.
By the new community guidelines, you cannot post anything that could turn someone else away from an advertiser. See the post that Dogster founder/Top Dog/Top Cat Ted R. wrote here. Notice that all comments will be moderated first? They're scared, and they have a right to be!
Catster Hazel Lucy, of the famous Tranquility Blankets and the Purr List, had her diary "cleaned up" (aka censored) by HQ for listing recalls and telling others plainly about Nutro's poison food. She has also been put on warning that she may be kenneled if she keeps this up.
Other Catsters and a few Dogsters saw this and complained to HQ about it. Over the weekend, many names on Catster were appended with "who loves Hazel Lucy". Cats wrote diary entries about her, and some wrote about their experiences with poison food of various brands (mostly recalled). One cat wrote about her doggie brother who ate Nutro after winning it in a Dogster-sponsored contest (free Nutro for a year).
Over the past day and a half, the diaries that were anti-poison food were either kenneled or put on notice, and many of the cats who had changed their names were either kenneled or warned as well. Some of the cats who had commented on censored diaries were also kenneled for commenting and agreeing with what was posted.
Catster/Dogster has prohibited anyone from commenting there on what is going on, but many have been making the new policy known other places. There is a group on Facebook for Concerned Catsters/Dogsters. Some of us have been posting on our non-Catster blogs. Many people have been using their FB status updates to keep others apprised of the situation as well.
Some Catsters/Dogsters are leaving because of this. Some have chosen to stay but not participate as much. Some have chosen to stay and defy the new rules. So far, only a few e-mails have been answered, of the many sent to Ted R. about the whole situation. None of the answers are good; most state that since advertisers pay the bills, they must be respected at all costs, and anyone who speaks out against them is defying the terms of service and will be kicked off the site.
User-friendly? Community? Definitely not!