The Art-Music Forum

Various => Miscellany => Topic started by: guest54 on October 03, 2018, 09:46:36 am

Title: Warning to all Members
Post by: guest54 on October 03, 2018, 09:46:36 am
There are wreckers abroad, and I advise you now to save any vital data you have. The reason I say this is that some unauthorised person has secretly got into the administrator account and changed the password.

Whoever changed the administator account has not had the decency to consult or inform me, who am one of the two founders (and namers) of this long-running forum. I am now locked out of it.

There has already been wild and ignorant talk of the wholesale deletion of other people's posts; whether this comes from the password deleters themselves or from some other agents I cannot say.

What I can say, is BE ON YOUR GUARD!

Title: Re: Warning to all Members
Post by: Neil McGowan on October 03, 2018, 04:52:28 pm
Mr Grew (or whoever is actually lurking behind your login name)

You wandered off from this forum over a year, without making a single announcement or saying as much as goodbye

We have no idea if the individual now lurking behind your name is actually the former founder of this forum, or an imposter

Either way, you relinquished the Moderator function to others - apparently willingly, since you gave them the moderator passwords?

We haven't really missed you, and your mercurial management of these boards is not something we long to see restored, thank you.

As has been pointed out elsewhere, either you - or an indivivual masquerading as you - is encouraging (c)opyright infringement, and that's not something I can condone either.

I fear, King Lear, that having split up your kingdom on your own recognisances., you must learn to live with the results of your folly.

Title: Re: Warning to all Members
Post by: the Administration on October 03, 2018, 11:40:05 pm
This is all very sad!

Instead of responding to the statement issued by me on behalf of the current Administration-,1348.msg33405/topicseen.html#msg33405 (,1348.msg33405/topicseen.html#msg33405)

and fully endorsed by my co-administrator Maris (Latvian) on the thread linked above, Sydney has chosen to describe us as "wreckers" and has advised members to save "any vital data" they may have. He talks about "wild and ignorant talk of the wholesale deletion of other peoples' posts".

I am not going to repeat the content of the statement linked above. But I want to reassure members that the administrators who took up the responsibility back in March when Sydney voluntarily and for his own reasons relinquished the role are the same people who now continue to administer this forum. We are not "wreckers". No "vital data" belonging to members is at any risk.

There will be no "wholesale deletion" of posts. In the seven months that the current administrators have been responsible for the forum the only posts deleted (around three in total) have been those which were clearly links to non-musical, "dodgy" websites put up by members who posted once and then promptly disappeared. We also deleted a post which provided a link to a pirate site specifically targetted by the FBI.

What will happen is that the forum's established and agreed policy will be enforced. This was explained in the linked statement. The administrators have a legal and, at least as importantly, an ethical responsibility to do so.

What we are determined on however is to ensure that only those posts which replicate commercially available cds derived from You Tube are deleted. This will involve careful checking. We have no intention and wish to avoid deleting anything which complies with forum policy. There are thousands of links on this site to performances of music which do not derive from commercial cds. These links are safe and will most certainly not be removed or interfered with.

Neil's comments above are blunt and harsh. Very sadly however we have to say that the essence of his post is both to the point and correct.

Title: Re: Warning to all Members
Post by: Latvian on October 04, 2018, 01:24:49 pm
Thank you for your clear and measured response to Sydney's post, Colin. And thanks to Neil for your blunt and accurate assessment. Sadly, it's a distinct possibility that "Sydney" is no longer Sydney, although that would be a less upsetting explanation than the possibility that there are mental issues coming to the fore.

I am in full agreement with your comments. For the record, I never sought administrative responsibilities on this forum and accepted them with great reluctance due to time constraints. However, I value this forum and consider it an important responsibility to keep it alive and vital.

Title: Re: Warning to all Members
Post by: Neil McGowan on October 04, 2018, 02:49:25 pm
I am sure all of the members here value the time and work spent by the Admin team on keeping the forum up and running successfully.  Thank you!

Title: Re: Warning to all Members
Post by: Dundonnell on October 04, 2018, 03:31:39 pm
My thanks to both Maris and Neil for their supportive posts and kind comments!

I want to put on record that it speaks volumes about the integrity and decency of Maris (Latvian) that at a time when he is experiencing very serious domestic issues involving his mother's health that he should have found time to post on here.

Unfortunately there is a new post from Sydney Grew entitled "Questions for Mr. Dundonnell" which has been located in the thread "Links to videos of compositions  by little known composers".

This post alleges that "some hacker's tool" has been used to "steal" the username and change the password of the administrator. These are very serious allegations. They are also both offensive and totally lacking in any foundation in fact.

The current administrators have-as I have now said repeatedly-been "in post" since March. They took on their current duties and responsibilities in partnership after the previous administrator resigned. Changing passwords is a practice which is recommended to all internet users on a regular basis to protect their own security and integrity.

To, apparently publicly, publish the password (as Sydney Grew demands) would be a ridiculous act. It would expose this site to infiltration by real hackers who could steal member's identities (as has happened recently on Facebook).

Sydney Grew has also threatened a member of the Administration.

As Neil has said members did not join this forum in order to witness this "sad charade". New or prospective members will not wish to join or participate in such a forum. Existing members will be bemused and, quite properly, horrified.

With considerable reluctance I am therefore temporarily locking that thread. The ugly, unnecessary and increasingly abusive nature of the contributions from the member in question cannot be allowed to bring the forum into potential disrepute.

Members have had over a week of this and that is more than enough! Any member can, of course, communicate with either Maris (Latvian) or myself by private message. This applies to members who agree with the position and statement of forum policy already clearly outlined and equally to those who do not.

Clearly members can continue to have their say publicly by posting here or elsewhere. We have absolutely no wish to inhibit or restrict comment. All I would ask is that this is done in the normal way for this forum-with courtesy and respect.

Title: Re: Warning to all Members
Post by: Vandermolen on October 04, 2018, 04:37:15 pm
For what it's worth I've done some booklet-note writing for a small CD company (Alto) and even suggested some releases (invariably rejected) and selected a couple of cover images. These small companies depend on people buying hard-copies of their CDs. Therefore I don't think that it is right to post copies here of You Tube videos of, for example, complete works in identical recordings to ones which are still commercially available. I wrote the notes for the final five releases on Alto of music by Miaskovsky/Myaskovsky. Occasionally I used to be asked if I could send copies of my notes to people who had purchased the Warner boxed set of complete Miaskovsky symphonies, which had very sketchy, almost non-existent, notes. I always politely refused, whilst directing anyone interested to the Myaskovsky RU website (probably now deleted in view of our current relationship with Russia) which contained lots of useful information available for free. This was because I thought that it was unfair to the record company to undrcut them in this way, especially as they produced super-budget CDs. Occasionaly I'm sure I've posted stuff which is commercially available but always short extracts or a sample of the CD rather than the whole CD. From now I only intend to post material which is otherwise unavailable such as the Gruner Hegge recording of Klaus Egge's First Symphony or Gordon Jacob's Concerto for Two Pianos.

Title: Re: Warning to all Members
Post by: christopher on October 04, 2018, 07:17:01 pm
Thank you Colin and Maris for your principled stands and for all the hard work you do to keep this valuable site running.  And well said Neil!

Title: History of a password
Post by: guest54 on October 05, 2018, 12:57:30 am

As the joint founder and present owner of this forum I want to give members the truth about recent events.

For ten years or so the forum ran very smoothly. There was only ever one password.

About six months ago, because of advancing age, I began to look into handing the administrative tasks to others. I approached eight members who seemed the most reliable types and the most frequent posters. Each of them refused to take up the task, giving various reasons for their refusal.

I was nevertheless obliged to give up active administration for a short time, but I left the system password with all eight members, for use if any emergency arose. I heard nothing more from any of them.

When I recovered I found that member Dundonnell had assumed the administrative role, without telling me. In many posts he referred to himself as "the administrator of this forum".

I let that situation continue until he began arbitrarily to threaten the deletion of posts by all and sundry for incomprehensible reasons.

At that point I decided he was not suitable for the administrative task, and I resumed the role myself. I informed all members of what I had done and of the reason for it. And to avoid confusion I assigned a new, simple password to the administraor's account. All went well for a few days.

Then, lo and behold, some hacker took over the administrative account, and Dundonnell began posting as though he were still administring our forum.

I have asked him to tell me who hacked the administrator account, what the pirate password is, and who else (if any one) knows it. But so far he has refused to say.

The fact is, that Dundonnell was dismissed as administrator on 28th September 2018 because of his unsuitability for the role. He has had no legitimate administrative role at this forum since 28th September 2018.

I solemnly affirm the truth of every word I have written in this posting.

S.G. - forum founder and owner

Title: Re: Warning to all Members
Post by: Greg K on October 05, 2018, 03:59:38 am
Disingenuous, Sydney.

Could you please direct members to posts of yours at the time you yielded (in actuality renounced) administrative duties for this site that specified it was only for a "short time", after which you would resume your previous control?  That wasn't at all the communication you made, - far from it.

Title: Re: Warning to all Members
Post by: mjkFendrich on October 05, 2018, 07:36:57 am
What a shame,

Dundonnell has done his job as administrator extremely well and took real responsibility for that job.
You cannot just dismiss him!


Title: Re: Warning to all Members
Post by: Greg K on October 05, 2018, 04:31:28 pm
Colin, Maris, & D Hibbard are the legitimate administrators of this Forum as I see it.  Is there anyone here who feels differently?

In fact, though, I suspect most members have no impulse to participate in these squabbles.

You can't take back your kingdom, Sydney.  One wishes for a loyal Fool to apprise you of the reasonable course.

Title: Re: Warning to all Members
Post by: jimmatt on October 05, 2018, 04:34:41 pm
Not I, I felt better with Dundonell, I suppose this forum will go to hell, too.

Title: Re: Warning to all Members
Post by: Dundonnell on October 05, 2018, 05:13:23 pm
For avoidance of any confusion I am posting this under my own name. However I want to emphasise that everything I have written over the past ten days or so has been agreed in full with Maris (Latvian) with whom I have been in constant communication.

This is and continues to be a very sad situation. It is not (as Neil wrote very recently) what members joined this forum to read about. It is both distasteful and unpleasant.

However there are aspects of Sydney Grew's post which require a response, particularly since he writes that "I solemnly affirm the truth of every word I have written in this posting".

1) Sydney writes that he approached members about six months to indicate that he wished to hand over the administrative tasks, that each of them refused to take up the task, giving various reasons for this.

Sydney sent a private message to selected members on 9th March informing them that for reasons of advancing age and deteriorating eyesight he wished to give up the role of administrator. In that message he handed over the administrator password.

I did not "refuse to take up the task". In a private message to Sydney sent on the same day I wrote "As the most frequent poster on this site I feel that I have an obligation to put my name forward to take some responsibility".  I made it a condition of taking on the role that "I would require the co-operation of others in order to read/monitor the posts and thereby preserve the principles and high standards of civility which you, quite correctly, insisted upon from members".

I received no reply to that message or indeed any further correspondence with Sydney. There was an exchange of private messages between members, some of whom explained why they did not wish any additional responsibilities. Some were kind enough to urge me to take on the duties of administrator.

Since I had the password I duly notified the membership of the change of administration. Maris (Latvian) also requested the password and I was obviously delighted that my "condition" of acceptance had been met, that the administration would-as I had wished-be shared.

The change of administration took effect in March and has continued harmoniously since then.

2) Sydney says that he was "nevertheless obliged to give up active administration for a short time". This apparent "temporary" nature of his retirement was not mentioned in his private message of March 9th, nor was it communicated to the membership. I would never have agreed to assume my current duties, nor would Maris, had we understood that it was only on a "temporary" basis.

Title: Re: Warning to all Members
Post by: Dundonnell on October 05, 2018, 05:14:33 pm

3) Sydney writes that he "let" this situation continue until I "began arbirtrarily to threaten the deletion of posts by all and sundry for incomprehensible reasons". This is nothing short of a travesty of the truth. I have already explained that only four posts have been deleted over the past seven months and explained the reasons why this was done. The only posts which Maris and I were and are agreed would be subject to deletion were those three or four which clearly infringed copyright because the posted content consist of You Tube videos copied directly from commercially available cds. We have carefully explained our rationale for this. That rationale is hardly "incomprehensible". Only one member-Sydney himself-has posted such videos. One member (earlier today) very promptly deleted his own links to music which has now been issued commercially on a Lyrita cd following a polite request to do so.

3) Sydney says that he had decided that I was "not suitable for the administrative task" and that "I was dismissed as administrator on September 28th". This is all news to me! No such communication of my "unsuitability" was made to me either publicly or privately, nor was my "dismissal". I can only assume from what Sydney has written that Maris too is "unsuitable" and that he too has been "dismissed".

4) I am again described as or alleged to be in some way in league with a "hacker". I am described as someone with "no legitimate administrative role".

As I wrote in a previous post this forum is not my personal property. But neither does it belong to Sydney to hire and fire administrators. The forum is freely hosted and "belongs" to the membership. From the content, tone and tenor of the comments already posted by other members the current administration has their confidence to carry out their duties with due regard to their legal obligations and their ethical responsibilities as they see them and in line with agreed forum policies. If the current administrators fail in these responsibilities we would expect to be told the membership itself collectively.

With genuine sadness I have to say that Sydney's latest post is, at best, misleading and inaccurate.

With considerable reluctance I am locking this thread to prevent an ongoing and unseemly "squabble" running on interminably with little chance of resolution. I repeat however and stress that any member who wishes to communicate their views can do so by private message directly to me or to Maris (Latvian) or to us both (as The Administration).

Title: Re: Warning to all Members
Post by: Dundonnell on October 05, 2018, 05:16:45 pm
Not I, I felt better with Dundonell, I suppose this forum will go to hell, too.

Thank you. This forum will "not go to hell" if the current administrators can prevent we are determined to do!!