There's a reason this page was suggested....
This site provides information about the fraternal organization called 'Freemasonry' or just 'Masonry' (the Masons) and about the small but vocal number of individuals who resent it. You might know Masons as the Shriners wearing those red fezzes who run hospitals for burned and crippled children providing free medical care or you may know of Masonry because a family member belongs. If you want to learn more while you're here, this is a good site but the purpose of THIS page is to explain a problem into which you've been drawn.
If you've received a complaint about one of your users and were referred here, thank you for taking the time to visit. We hope it will help you quickly determine 'what's what'.
With the advent of Internet communications, Masons have found the opportunity to share world-wide fraternal friendship. There are, however, a small group of opponents to Masonry -- and they are very vocal in cyberspace. Motivated by greed or religious intolerance or simply hatred of something they don't understand, they'll take whatever steps are necessary to disrupt Masonic activities online.
Usenet mailing lists are often freewheeling and the behavior there can be rude and crude, depending on the nature of the list. However, as you also know, some lists are genteel and 'family oriented'. The latter are the type where Masons want to be to discuss their organization.
Regretfully, those opposed to Masonry regularly and vocally invade the cyberspace meeting places of Masons and proceed to preach, insult, and generally disrupt the harmony so precious to Masons. As a part of such disruption, you may have received a complaint about one of your users and their postings to a Masonic newsgroup or other location.
Realizing that Masons could be silenced (in addition to being insulted and maligned), some of these anti-Masons have begun complaining to Masons' ISPs that the posts of Masons to Masonic newsgroups were inappropriate. (Huh? Yep, that's what they're doing! <sigh>).
Conversely, Masons have been complaining to ISPs about the behavior of these anti-Masons whose sole purpose is to antagonize and degrade Masonry. Their extensive postings are a drain on your resources and they regularly step 'over the line' in their behavior. They're also quick to hide and/or cry loudly when caught in inappropriate behavior.
If you're an employee or owner of an ISP and you've received a complaint about a posting in one of the Masonic newsgroups, there are several questions you should ask:
The differences between these should be obvious based on the documentation provided.
Most ISPs understand that some Usenet posters will be more aggressive than others and most ISPs expect that some posts made by their users are liable to upset those with whom they don't agree. However, when the actions become - effectively - 'harassment' (continued postings inappropriate to the charter of the group), ISPs may become unwitting pawns in a game played between the protagonists.
We regret that you may have become involved in this way but we thank you sincerely for coming here to try and sort through the smoke and mirrors.
If you are an ISP and have received complaints about one of your users, we will be happy to offer a confidential and unbiased confirmation and/or help you sort through the charges and counter-charges. Feel free to e-mail us if we can help.
And if you'd like to know more about Freemasonry, we'd encourage you to browse around our site - starting, perhaps, with the section which explains what the organization is all about. That's right here. We've got some three hundred pages here with a wealth of information about the world's oldest and largest fraternity. In addition, we're open and upfront in identifying a number of anti-Masons, notably those active online. In fact, our search engine may pull up the name who's been the cause of your involvement....
Just click on "Prince, the Search Dog" to find things on our site. He's here on every page and he'll take you directly to our search form where you can see if we've written about whatever it is you're interested in. Prince has a great memory; he always remembers where things are! We also encourage you to use our Site Map and Contents Page for a full overview of the many things you'll find here.
This site and its contents are © (copyright) 1998-2012 by Edward L. King (Ed King). All rights reserved. All comments and opinions are mine personally.
Got some thoughts or reactions?
We'd be interested in your comments - within reason of