Alright, I didn't really want to do this, but this recent wave of butthurt users concerning SIF's actions over the Wikia Answers filth made me think enough is enough. It's time for someone to actually speak out over this. And who better than me? Not to toot my own horn you must understand..!
In September 2005, I joined the world wide web. It was all pretty new to me back then so I had no idea what YouTube or SIF were, and I didn't know that there were many (grown up) people that liked Thomas and Friends. I joined YouTube in 2006 and have spent 5 years (on many different accounts :P) on there. And a lot of issues on there are the amount of trolls on there and the impact that SIF has on the fanbase. For three years, I was at loggerheads with Ryan for one reason: I was influenced by the YouTube Thomas fans.
When I realised that what I was doing was counterproductive and immature, I tried to reconcile with him, and he gladly obliged. Once it was settled, I asked to join SIF, to which he accepted. I was surprised at this. A lot of heated things were said and he just put that all aside to allow me a spot on the biggest Thomas forum on the internet. From that day onward, I have respected Ryan and SIF to the utmost.
Then, I see on YouTube people moaning and bitching that they got kicked out of SIF. To them, I say this: you probably deserved it. SIF is run like clockwork. The owners do not ask for much, only that you treat each member of the forum the same way you wish to be treated, and swearing and namecalling is not tolerated. We are talking about a children's show here people. A CHILDREN'S show. Grown ups should act like role model to kids, and that doesn't mean swearing on videos that are aimed at them, or swearing at other people! I know I'm not the best advocate for this, as I've been known to swear like a sailor. But I KNOW that it's wrong and I am doing my best to not do it anymore, and being on SIF is helping immensely. The members aren't doing anything personally, but their rules remind me that there are other things that can be said rather than just constant swear words.
There's another thing that I like about SIF, and it's something I mentioned earlier: respect. If people are treated with respect, they will get that respect in return. The only reason Ryan responds to him the way he does is because they constantly run his name through the mud and, to be honest I'm sick of it. If YOUR name was dragged through the mud in the same fashion as you lot do with Ryan's, I bet you'd act the same wat as he did. And if you say otherwise you're just lying to yourselves. From what I know, Ryan has a full time career. To do that, and run a succesful fansite, an even more successful forum AND a blog, not to mention everything else he does, definately deserves respect.
Not only that though, I feel SAFE on SIF. I don't have to worry about trolls and bullies like I do on Blogger, YouTube, DeviantART or the Thomas Wikia Answers, because I know that SIF is run properly and they will not tolerate bullying, threatening or disgusting behaviour. And that gets a round of applause from me. I love Thomas and Friends, and to have a safe haven to talk about something I love is something of a godsend.
As for what they said about that Answers page, I applaud them for that too. The messages on there are absolutely disgusting and downright abhorant. There is no place for filth like that, ESPECIALLY when children are concerned! They didn't want to run the Answers page, they wanted to bring the problems that page has to the forefront of the administrators of that page. And it worked, as the admin are acting on questions that promote bullying, or anything that doesn't concern Thomas and Friends.
Overall, if the entire internet, especially YouTube, was run as well as Sodor Island Forums is, the internet would be a much safer place to interact. And those who have a problem with it have probably been able to get away with a lot of things in their lives because they've had no proper discipline. You have to learn that life is not like modern day Thomas and Friends, every action has a consequence. If you do something positive, you get something good in return. If not, you get negative consequences. SIF doesn't ruin anything for anyone. They just have the intelligence to realise that a lot of Thomas and Friends sites need to be run better than they are doing!