So I think things were a little too heated, and we handled things unprofessionally before. I would like to clarify somethings, and hopefully calm things down a little bit.
First of all, on behalf of all the mods, I'd like to make a formal statement. Above all, we try to make OH a place where people of all backgrounds feel comfortable in posting. The last thing we actually want is for a group to feel ostracized and attacked. Comments made by some on staff that may have come across as implying homosexuality or any other sexual orientation, being creepy in nature or otherwise unwelcome, were not meant to be read that way and could have been constructed better. Things are quickly said in the heat of the moment that are later regretted and should not have happened that way.
We're all humans first before we are mods and having such hurtful and heavy accusations thrown at you never feels good. On top of that people personally insulting us and digging into our personal lives, we got defensive. But it should have been handled with more tact.
Now onto the actual heart of the matter. Discussing the sexuality of minors. We as a team decided to ban the discussion of sexuality or romantic endeavors in any capacity throughout the forum. Be it gay, straight, innocent puppy love, or sexual. None of it will be allowed. Our reasoning for which being that there just just shouldn't be such invasive speculation into minors personal lives. It doesn't matter if everything discussed is technically public knowledge or not, we just believe that people under the age should be afforded a decent amount of personal privacy on our site.
We don't think this is a problem related only to that thread, as it really has nothing to do with lgbtq issues at all in our eyes, just the basic privacy of minors. It was just the thread which was brought to our attention first. With that being said this isn't meant to stifle peoples freedom of speech or right to talk about their own issues. You are free to talk about your own experiences regarding sexuality and romance as a minor, as they are your own to share.
As such it should be clearly stated no threads involving minors associated with romance will be allowed. Shipping threads fall under this category and any shipping thread with a minor in it must be clearly stated to be non-romantic or it will be removed until they're of age.
As for the accusations of us being homophobic, there just isn't much for me to say. I know I'm not, I'm sure the other mods aren't as well. But it seems like no matter what we say on the issue were just told were wrong cause XYZ. It's like arguing against a brick wall, and nothing we say will get through, so you are free to think what you like.
We try to hear your complaints, and I know we're all constantly evolving and trying to become better mods. So if you think were doing something incorrect, let us know (preferably politely). We know we're not perfect and we fuck up sometimes. But outright attacking us is just going to result in a net negative for both parties.
The intent of this rule change is and never was to target specific groups or discriminate. And it saddens me that its been misconstrued this way. I hope this was able to clear things up some, but if there's anything you would like to discuss please do voice your opinion in a respectful manner and we will try our best to explain.