Starting an O.P is a challenge.The person who starts the O.P then relies on fellow posters to obtain feedback and hopefully keep the O.P, informative and positive. So starting an O.P becomes " Shared accountabilility" between O.P starter, and thread poster.
Some O.P's will be more of a risk factor than others, because some topics are more controversial. So when I start an O.P I now ask myself what is:-
A) The desired outcome.
B) The undesired outcome.
Controlling the undesired outcomes, is an art, particularly if members are learning from the thread. Personally I try to search for reasons why my O.P has got undesired outcome.I think bad outcome occasionally happen's because :-
A) I start an O.P and am not their to reply to the comments, or manage the thread.
B) My O.P is crap, and my point of view is only that, my point of view without facts to back it up.
C) Occasionally posters are here not to learn and debate but to disturb and disrupt a thread.
But of the 124 O.P's I have started, ( Yes I need a life) I consider only two have become negative and argumentative. Therefore I am going to chance a third with this O.P, because I think this board has missed some of the more gutsy " Cofty" O.P's. I am talking about those O.P's that take a greater risk at upsetting others, but are also more informative, more educational and take more hassle to manage than my daily rumblings about art, birthday cards, and sugar cubes.
So as an often boring, cowdley member of the board, with this O.P I want to be courageous and acknowledge my appreciation for those less boring, those that start more risky O.P's.(Now who remembers my O.P " Won't get fooled again moon landing?" Over 500 pages of crap, I think I will stick with my less controversial O.P's like " God is Love" :-)