Reader Submission #20 – PretendRaceCars.net Censored?

Got an interesting email the other day from randomfaca. In it, he writes:

censoringOh buddy, we’re censored on more than just RaceDepartment.

We’re blocked on the Project CARS forum, as mods are quick to delete any post linking to us:

OneLinking to us on r/SimRacing requires a moderator approval. A recent post I made on the Porsche 962c for Assetto Corsa didn’t appear until several hours had passed:

ledditAnd yes, we’re censored on RaceDepartment:

RDI’ll leave it to the comments section to figure out why.

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59 thoughts on “Reader Submission #20 – PretendRaceCars.net Censored?

  1. I really enjoy your articles, and this blog became a daily stop for me.

    You guys are the Jimquisition of sim racing community in my opinion. It’s a true “by sim racers for sim racers” blog, no bias opinions, no marketing-behind-the-courtain bs but the naked truth of what’s going on in this niche of gaming industry.

    Keep it up, don’t ever change.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. To be fair, I have seen more false article on this blog than in any of those forums.. 🙂 None is forcing anyone to read anything (here or there), but you can’t call this an unbiased source. We must be honest on this.

      Like

      1. Yes, we must be honest…this is a very biased site, you can see from all these advertisements here that he is working for a company sworn to destroy sim racing and all of us brave enough to stand by the side of courageos developers like Slighty Mad (but definitely sane) Studios, for whom we should pray and be thankful that they exist…such passionate people motivated by love for videogames, not money

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Anyone would think you’re saying things that some people don’t want other people reading about!
    I mean, if this site were as benignly stupid as various moderators like to point out, you would think they might credit their own users with the ability to make that observation for themselves, rather than forcibly hiding this site from them…

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Hilarious that Bram from RD would call you a “pretend journalist”. He needed to go begging to reddit to get people to write for his site.

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    1. Most likely. Most people in sim racing got to know about the troubles of that league through PRC. They just got pissed that other website reported that league problem, because anyone who read those articles could see no one made up anything, as you could confirm it checking the discussion boards and penalty given over at RD.

      Like

    2. Ah that’s a good guess. I was having trouble remembering what has been said that would piss off RD in particular.

      I thought Bram would understand that a legitimate complaint against the penalties does not warrant url moderation. I’m rather disappointed, RD was one of the few forums that actually allowed honest discussions around pcars.

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      1. I think Bram also understood a legitimate complaint.

        But I also think Bram then wanted a follow up /after/ the first two races, when things actually calmed down, and got normal – but then it wasn’t fun anymore, as the league couldn’t be bashed anymore, neither could RD.
        So then it went to the “reader submission” about economy, and on Bram, privately. Without any proof at all, just lots of accusations without anything to back ut up. Not that it is needed either for the read submissions…

        There is no wonder why it actually ended up this way.

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      2. Well, that also seems like a reasonable explanation.

        I can’t directly refute anything you said, so I’ll keep it in mind.

        I would like to think this site and RD do not have mutually exclusive goals and need not be in conflict.

        If Bram is simply asking for an honest follow up on the situation, then that’s content I would like to see and I can understand why he would like everyone to know that they are paying attention to the AC league.

        I haven’t been paying enough attention to get a read on the prevalence of link spam. Wasn’t me, I know that much.

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    3. Bram’s displeasure over PRC probably doesn’t stem from the penalties drama.

      It’s probably due to this article: https://pretendracecars.net/2015/06/10/reader-submission-4-penalties-are-the-least-of-racedepartments-worries/

      Whether or not the claims of the reader who submitted the article are true (I honestly believe they are not, claims of RD staff being paid enough to own Porsches and Ferraris is a well known in-joke in RD’s staff circles, something which the reader obviously didn’t understand), getting something like this published when only going off a single untrusted source isn’t very good journalism. Always look for a second opinion when there is even a little doubt in the original source. Only go off a single source if they have proven to be reliable in the past. If there is no other source available for the claim, don’t publish it. James has just as much responsibility in publishing words from others on their website as they do their own words.

      It’s great to open up reader submissions, but when such comments could be an instrument for slander against people it defeats the point of them. We actually want the submissions to be truthful insights into the world of sim racing, and not a way to get a diatribe easily published to hundreds of readers.

      Outside of this, I enjoy the articles written here and I hope they continue for months to come.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Which is pretty much impossible to prove, as reader submissions are fairly anonymous. And no one will touch such a case, when you don’t have person to hang it on.

        In my mind, anonymity should only be used to protect the message-bearer when it can hurt him/her, but at the same time, solid proof must be taken along with it. Not like it was/is used here.

        (in respons to James)

        Like

  4. People are used to spam websites just for advertising purpose more than for linking something interesting. When linking turns into abusing, there you’ll find the hammer. More than censor a website (you can’t really censor a website, since the URL still visible), you are avoiding the linking so you won’t give more “clicks” to the spammers. Who want to visit this website, will still visit it IMO.

    It happens on Race Department, it happened on AC forum and iRacing forum, it happened on PCARS forum, it happened on VR.net… this website is “censored” on many website, not because of the contents, but because there’s ****holes who are spamming the url!

    Like

      1. Nope, because on Race Department we had people who have been already a pain in the arse. The point is that those kids doesn’t understand that by spamming they are only giving a bad reputation to the site spammed. For this reason this website is now labeled a trolls blog and ignored by most.
        When you do “advertising” you must play smart.. we can’t have kids screaming our name and being taken seriously. Well done!

        Like

    1. No banning of the url but people got annoyed about the constant linking even on a certain car imageboard for anime nerds.

      Like

  5. I upvote that Synthbent715, need a forum, was about time a true journalist to stand up. Congrats James and your team, the more they hate you, the more motives to stand up.

    Like

  6. This site serves as a good counterbalance to the usual simracing sites, which – to be honest – have become so dry and boring that I don’t even visit them anymore.

    Like

  7. Regarding the RaceDepartment issue, I would guess that the reason for that is the extremely one sided approach to the league – then the accusations against Bram & The Staff.

    If PRC would’ve reported on the last two races as well, where the penalty problems was non-existent.
    And not let any unfounded accusations get published without even trying to verify any facts.
    This isn’t just lazy, but the content are balancing the legal aspect as well.

    I would guess that is the reason.
    One sided reporting isn’t anything other than “pretendjournalism”

    Like

  8. Honestly, in terms of ‘problems with sim racing today’, I don’t think RD can truly be considered a major offender.

    I would rather see an attempt to maintain a mutually beneficial relationship with RD, rather than an escalation of conflict.

    Division between an already heavily censored common viewpoint isn’t going to help us as consumers in the long run.

    Just give it some thought. AC league is a work in progress that I will be keeping tabs on and possibly joining, either way.

    Like

  9. regarding rd, the amount of times prc has been 100% right about other issues leads me to believe they are right about rd.

    1. pcars being shit
    2. iracing community being shit
    3. nascar 15 being shit
    4. pcars 2 coming
    5. logitech wheel details
    6. ac coming to consoles

    i think they have many insiders so I think when an article is posted, its probably right

    Liked by 2 people

    1. What about RD being right? That it was massive penalties in the first two AC races?
      The money-part? No, and nope.
      Though, I am just as much of a secure source as the reader submission… So, I guess you’d rather believe the one that fits you 😉

      Like

  10. According to this blog:

    RD forum is shit;
    PCARS forum is shit;
    iRacing forum is shit;
    AC forum is shit;

    ….we should star to think if there’s something smelly here, rather than anywhere else?

    Like

    1. Race Department is pretty good. Stay away from leagues where Bram’s a steward and you’ll be fine. No different than going to a good high school yet changing your courses so you don’t have the strict English teacher you’ve been warned about. The Brazilian Stock Car league was officiated in a fantastic manner and the site itself is organized really nicely.

      The pCars forums remove anyone who dares to speak negatively about the game, even though they have every right to considering the game’s buggy as fuck and all five patches have failed to fix several gamebreaking issues. It’s an echo chamber.

      The iRacing forums used to be pretty good, but unfortunately there’s a ton of elitists who believe that because it costs the most, it’s the best sim on the market. Protip: getting a legitimate NASCAR license is cheaper.

      The Assetto Corsa forums are really good. I remember when we first broke news that AC would come out for consoles, the thread on the AC forums exploded into people jumping on Kunos. They had no problem with that thread.

      Like

      1. When you smell shit in every place you go… you should stop look at the others, and start to look under your nose, the cause might be there.

        90% of the articles here are made from thin air (“scoops” who aren’t scoop, false news, click baiting). I think that this is the main reason of why people are banning this blog from other forums and website, not because of contents or because they are “scared” of who knows what.. but because of the click bait strategy.

        Forget the racing scene for a moment… if you remove all this “articles” and you will publish naked girls pictures instead, it will be the same: click baiting, no useful contents, and people banning you from the forums because of spamming.

        Do you really think this blog can live of his own? Did you figured that it’s always the same persons (including me) posting here? We are circling together jerking on our news, while the rest of the “scene” knows nothing about us.

        What’s the sense of all this? I dunno, but it’s your spare time, so good luck! 🙂

        Like

      2. And once again you are blatantly lying about pCARS forums … why?

        Maybe your site is censored on other sites, because you’re still spreading lots of bullshit and misinformation (not only pCARS related)? Maybe it is because you are simple bunch of douches who are trying to get some attention and nothing more? Are you really so full of yourselves, that you think you are doing any good to anybody? Dream on.

        I may be wrong, but I think I read somewhere, that Austin is not afraid of bullying as he was bullied in RL too ….. Maybe that is the reason you are full of shit … looking for online cure for some RL complexes.

        Like

    1. Looking at the traffic of this blog (you can count the name posting each article).. I imagine they must be really SCARED! 😀

      Like

  11. Gotta laugh at those who say PRC was banned because of not reporting of the next races where nothing outrageous happened. There are 100s of leagues going on, stuff working OK is NOT news material, outrageous stewarding IS news material.

    The more they ban the place, the more I like them.

    Like

    1. Those, was only one. Me 😉

      And no, that’s not /the/ reason. /The/ reason I guess, would be the totally unfounded, undocumented, libelous claims against Bram and other RD-Admins taking money from the site and living off it, buying who knows what, and still asking for more money. And the talk about RD being a full-time job etc. etc.

      If the one that submitted that had been ‘outed’ I would guess he/she would’ve seen a case brought up against him, instead he/she was given the chance of being anonymous and talk trash without anything to back it up.

      But, reg. the league. RD’s stance seemed to be “we penalize for a breach of rules, but no DQ” (a DQ would be the norm the most places). While PRC had the “Look at the huge penalties here, it’s idiotic”. Like a breach of rules is ok.
      It all sorted itself out, and the last race had no penalties at all.

      I still don’t see how actually penalizing a breach of rules is outrageous. But we are all different.

      Like

      1. What the hell you talking about mate. The penalties were utterly stupid, that´s why they were reported on. The penalties used were laughable, and that “it didn´t happen other times and the site didn´t talk about those” is a really stupid counter. “Stewards don´t behave like muppets” is not news, not even in F1.

        Anyway, the way you try to dumb down the situation to “we penalized breachs” already shows you know it´s bullshit. Pro-tip: If you don´t want bullshit reported again, don´t steward like a mule.

        Like

      2. Those “totally unfounded, undocumented, libelous claims” were never refuted by Bram, and were also never spoken about further. Bram has just as much of a write to submit a reader submission as the alleged staff member who wrote in with those “facts”. Some of those points have been spoken about a long time ago, Pretendracecars are just the latest to jump onto the bandwagon. They’re also the first to even attempt to back up their claims. Most of the stuff they used in their argument is stuff that’s available for anyone to see with just a simple google search.

        There’s no disputing the fact that the owner of RD is able to live comfortably off of what looks like his sole income stream (RD), PRC showed this. There’s also no disputing the fact that staff are unpaid, they’ve said it themselves in their defenses. This doesn’t mean they’re unhappy though, pretty much every staff member I’ve ever come across from RD has said they’re happy to help even without compensation. They dedicate hours and hours of their time to the running of the leagues and to writing fresh content and moderating the forum. That’s where James’ side of the argument came in terms of it being like a full-time job.

        There were some staff members who came to this blog to bash James for actually having the balls to stand up to an administration bigger than his own for being wrong, both on the penalties and on the potential inappropriate use of funds. Then they decided to censor this site instead of tackle the issues raised head on. That in itself should be enough to deter people from supporting their community. It shows their weakness in not being able to deal with anything that may bring them into disrepute. It’s a poor character trait to have, to rather censor something instead of give your side on the matter.

        With regards to the penalties, those were absolutely ridiculous. I also remember PRC reporting on what the initial penalties were meant to be before things escelated. The mere fact that they decided to alter their penalties to support a particular agenda against a select few is again enough of a reason for someone to stop supporting the site. It seems as though a few did just that, and who could blame them? They had openly admitted and accepted that they’re liable for penalties, so they weren’t trying to say that they never did anything wrong. They were however trying to say that the extent of the penalties was a problem, as was everyone else. They were right, the penalties were bloated into something well beyond anything they should have been. A more sensible approach would have been to issue a DQ and race ban for the offenders as opposed to a 4 lap penalty.

        I read through the threads at RD, and there was a lot of absolute BS coming from the administration. They were unable to justify their penalties with any sensible arguments, and on top of this I believe they fired one staff member for leaking inside info but kept another on their roster even though he had done exactly the same thing. Those double standards were very surprising to see, after all the fuss about following rules etc. they weren’t even able to enforce their own rules on their own staff.

        RD is a great community, and they have amazing people helping them. But it seems that as soon as you do something which they don’t agree with, you’re immediately singled out and made to be some sort of a delinquent. That’s something PRC has been fighting against, and it’s that sort of hunger for truth and fairness, for giving the little guy a voice, which makes this site great.

        What you see is what you get here. There’s no petty politics, and no childish antics. Just a bunch of guys getting together to report on the things they love in the best interests of the people hey love doing it with. Exactly how it should be.

        Liked by 1 person

  12. RD stooping to iRacing’s mystery-ban shenanigans, they’ll do this but won’t back-it-up publicly, which IMO shows it’s something personal on their end, rather than what PRC is doing/has done.

    If they want to be the first to publicly explain this shit though, I’ll be all ears.

    Like

  13. The agenda of this blog has been clearly stated by Austin already: To be a tabloid/gossip site dedicated to racing sims. That mission statement automatically imlies the following properties:

    1: simplified views on everything, disguised as ‘opinion’, received as ‘truth’ by the followers

    2: simplistic writing style and language catering to the most simple minded people

    3: a clear agenda to stir shit up out of nothing, in order to gain clicks and traffic to the site

    4: create a climate of ‘us’ vs. ‘them’. Also catering to all kinds of not so bright people and create a community for people with zero communication skills

    5: Creating a conspiracy theory out of the fact that the agenda of this blog is not supported anywhere else, again geared towards the ‘us’ vs. ‘them’ frame.

    The concept seems to be working and all kinds of loonies flock on this blog, they feel acknowledged for being allowed to write whatever they want, regardless of the whole picture or the need to answer opposite opinions.

    Well played so far Austin, well played.

    Like

    1. Fancy that “write what ever they want” you say what a crazy fucking concept, no manicured responses? no spokes ppl? no ban hammers? no crazy religious nut censoring my colourful fucking language, far out almost sounds like free speech? we gotta close this shit down, we cant have ppl saying what the fuck they want, or ridiculing the fuck wittery of sim racing.

      Theres no conspiracy here baw bags, just a blog, that shines a light on aspects of the often crazy world of sim racing, if your obviously high intellect is bothering you here why even comment?do you feel better? smarter? outed PRC as “tabloid”?,we just ignore the positive right ups?

      Now, your clearly a runty cunty arse licking politically correct fanboy that loves censoring, so may I direct you to maybe the project car forums, its a really fun place full of your kind of intelligent ppl, riveting conversation and a very “witty” ian bell, or maybe a totally unbiased site like VR.nt, but if you feel like joining us very clearly loonie dumb cunts any other time be sure to “click” and comment.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. “You write for dumb people” seems a rather lame comeback. It actually looks the sort of comeback someone that can´t answer with facts a point raised has to resort to if you ask me. The site probably hurted your feelings reporting on something on the past, have a tissue.

      Like

  14. believe me your are “censored” in more places than what you have mentioned.
    rightly so I think because you are tabloid so youre not really to be taken seriously. plus you have lame-brains like the one above who feels the need to swear constantly in order to project a certain image of himself to you and feed his own insecurities.
    the idea for your site is not a bad one. free speech n all that. But it is very poorly executed and ends up just being bile and throwing stuff out there for the sake of it as if you have the need to constantly show ‘”look, we say anything!”
    And you should have some censorship. Show me a place where no censorship occurs and its a good place to read what people think. YouTube ? hehe. Most of the people who are “free” to comment there need lobotomies.

    So yeah, keep Pretending. You’re nothing but tabloid and try to feed of controversy for your numbers. At least you don’t need rationale, reason and brains for that.

    Like

    1. I don´t think you know what a tabloid is. I´m yet to see clickbait empty inside here. I´m yet to see fabricated controversy. All I´ve seen is honest reviews and reporting on stuff others don´t dare reporting on.

      That´s always going to piss some people used to get away with BS, so comments like yours are to expect, and they´re a sign the place is working.

      Like

      1. Others don’t dare to report “reviews” that aren’t verified. Here I have found “articles” that are completely false, and I never seen who ever have wrote those article to post a: “Sorry, I was wrong…”, after have been “caught”.

        So yes, you won’t find the same articles on those other websites.. because they normally turns on their brain before saying something.
        If i send an article here, pretending that the owner of that website have killed 10 children, they are going to post my “entry” without even verifying if i’m calling the truth or not… do you call this “honest reviews?” I call it: post everything, we don’t care, we are only interested to get more clicks.

        It’s not gonna work.. after a while people will figure it out. Should we continue like this forever?

        Like

      2. Maybe you could actually tell us which articles are supposedly false, because you sound like yet another butthurt PCars fanboy.

        Like

      3. What you think I know or I don’t know is irrelevant. Honest reviews eh? And you actually believe the hype that it’s stuff others don’t dare reporting on. It hardly requires bravery to put in an article what most people put in their comments on a daily basis.

        But it’s done in order to get reactions like yours. Comments like your last one is EXACTLY what they’re looking for. This isn’t about being pissed off because I prefer to have my own opinions than cater to someone elses. This site is all about opinion and just because they don’t filter it, doesn’t make it any more accurate or true.

        The place is working, yes. They are clearly doing exactly what they set out to do and you’re part of the machine. Well done for conforming.

        Like

  15. Austin started this site so that all of us involved would get laid and/or rich; neither of those has happened to any of us so this site is a failure.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Personally I’m not okay with y’all linking to pirated cars (talking the 962C and Mustang here, not that NR2003 stuff) and I know RD feels the same way so at this point I don’t really blame them for cutting off links to your site.

    Like

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