How long before SU deletes this post?

In another thread I responded to an SU team-member’s comment about “greatly reduced pricing” for 501c3 organizations. I, and others commented about how well-funded (if not excessively wealthy) many of these organizations are. Inexplicably, and without notice or warning, the comments were removed. At no time was I or anyone else disrespectful in our commentary. What is even more bizarre (and many of you may be familiar with this experience) is how upsetting and unnerving it is to have comments, or perhaps a partial discussion, removed without any trace it ever existed–even in your own personal comment history. SU could have provided notice, explained their actions, or rebutted the comments. Instead, poof! Gone. It’s as if they believe no one will notice they’re tilting the narrative. And maybe most won’t. But SU just took a huge credibility hit in my mind. I’m still shook by being erased.


I noticed your comment was no longer visible in the ‘Trimble Price Gouging’ forum post … At first, I thought you deleted it yourself.

I read what you posted and didn’t see any insults or reasons for its deletion.

If SketchUp is reading this, please give an explanation for censoring @audiobrad, because, from my point of view, it is not right.

Also, I don’t necessarily agree with @audiobrad, because I do want the OP to receive a discount for SketchUp Pro, but I would like everyone to give feedback on weather I agree or not.


Thank you! I hope he can get a discount through his museum connection as well–I wasn’t trying to blow up that option. But it’s sad that he has to go that route. If SU really wants to to help certain users, classes, or groups by giving discounts, it should at least use a basis of true need rather than an IRS filing status that is frequently used by the wealthy.

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Thanks for clarifying your point…In that case I 100% agree with you.

Your posts were flagged as off topic (Trimble’s 501c policy has nothing to do with the recent price increase). This should be perfectly fine in its own topic.

The entire thread was about SU pricing–including a discussion of discounts. Your own employee brought up the 501c3 discount. How did I go off topic?! And why is there no explanation or communication about reasons for removal? I understand the need for moderation–I’m actually a moderator in another popular forum–but your covert handling of such removals is bad policy. We’re your customers!


Since this is a message about moderation on the forum, moved from the Sketchup Pro category to the Meta category, it felt more appropriate.


This forum (last I knew) was hosted on Discourse servers (it uses the forum engine.)
This forum engine relies mainly upon the community policing itself. (The forums. subdomain URL actually leads to the forum on these 3rd party servers, again, last I knew.)

In the Discourse engine, other members can flag posts and when a certain number of flags are reached for a given flag type, the post is hidden with an inline statement that says “This post was flagged by the community and is temporarily hidden.” … or similar. Users can still read the post by clicking that “hidden” statement.

What is supposed to happen, when a member’s post is hidden by flagging, is that a Private Message is sent (the member gets a notification in their avatar menu at the top right.) The PM tells the member that their post has been hidden and must be edited within a certain amount of time or the system will delete it.

It’s been a while since it happened to me, but as I recall the message was rather vague as to the reason why the post was hidden. Ie, these messages from the system are very generic.

Now, yes, there are Admins who have powers to make stuff go “poof!”, but they should use restraint when it’s not spam, or flooding, or some porno bot posting. The system is designed to automatically give notification, and this shouldn’t be circumvented.

And yes, like any social system, the flagging feature can be abused by people who feel “offended” by what others might have said. I did not see the post in question, but I did read a few posts in that thread and saw that it was going to be a rant thread. So I went on to other things as I feel I’ve better things to do.

But I do think that people like to “crab” and need to because it makes them feel better to “have their say.” It’s just basic human nature. It is a forum after all.

I can only guess that some members might have felt it was a diversion of the conversation towards an anti-charity agenda. The flagging system gives those making a flag, very limited choices, ie: “Off-Topic, Inappropriate, Spam, and Something Else (which brings in an Admin)”. It’s likely the flaggers just picked the first option.


Thanks Dan. I won’t debate the merits of my post here except to say I was not piling on to a rant. In fact, my post was the first to directly respond to an SU employee’s reference to their 501c3 discounts. Ironically, the employee’s post still remains, but I guess no one is allowed to rebut it.

It should be noted that none of the notifications you referenced were sent to me, and no markers of the post’s removal are in the thread. It is this practice I find the most disturbing and disrespectful.

Sounds like “someone” jumped the gun instead of letting the system handle it normally.

It might be nice if the Discourse engine would give the poster the option of breaking the post out into a new “linked topic” when a post is hidden for being off-topic. (Feature requests need to be posted on

Note, this could have been done when replying by using the link menu (chain icon) below the Trimble employee’s post and choosing the [+ New Topic] button. (Just sayin’)

I didn’t feel it was a new topic–I thought it was 100% relevant to the discussion since the thread was about SU’s pricing and where a hobbyist or part-time user might find price breaks. An SU employee opened the discussion to the matter of available discounts, to which I expressed my opinion.

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Will the moderator who removed audiobrad’s post please identify yourself?


I’m Spartacus !

curious why you need the name of the moderator, when audiobrad is not asking for it.

Regarding “I’m Spartacus!” that quotation is generally taken as a statement of unity, resistance, and loyalty; an expression of solidarity and defiance against oppression or injustice. I, therefore, do not get your reference. I apologize.

Knowing the handle of the moderator who takes an action is valuable. Knowing that ID is secret is also valuable.

I was not aware that @audiobrad needs to ask before anyone else. Again, I apologize.

I’m not out for blood. But it would be nice to get an explanation from SU of how this can happen. Seems like even some insiders question if such a unilateral and covert deletion is consistent with company policy. But I’m not holding my breath…

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Following this thread with interest, just waiting around for the explanation…

The explanation is plainly shown in the forum guidelines:

Moderators have special authority; they are responsible for this forum.

In order to maintain our community, moderators reserve the right to remove any content and any user account for any reason at any time.

In addition to these generic Discourse guidelines, members are bound by the Trimble Website Terms of Use, which in the User Communications / Chat Rooms, Blogs and other User Forums section contains the statement:

However, Trimble reserves the right to review materials posted to the Services and to remove any materials in its sole discretion.

Now, there was already given above a basic explanation why it happened.

But reviewing the guidelines and the legal Terms, I do not find any obligation on Trimble’s part to explain moderation actions.

So, IMO, y’all are proverbially “beating the dead horse”.

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Dear Dan, good to know and thank you very much for taking the time to look up the guidelines and terms of use. Having said that, knowing this doesn’t really make me feel any less uncomfortable. Au contraire…

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Sure. But it is over and done with, and cannot be “undone”.
Although no one enjoys being “cancelled”, it does happen mistakenly in this case (it would seem.)

The complainant was invited to open a new topic of their own.

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Jeez, Dan, talk about missing the point. Of course they own the forum and can do whatever they want. I had moved on, but your dismissive reply makes my blood boil. The removal is annoying, but it’s the way it was handled with no explanation and no trace–not even in my personal posting record–that astounds me. Could they not at least have sent me a private message indicating why it was removed? And as I’ve said several times, their own employee opened the door to the discussion of discounts for non-profits, so that’s weird. Did you yourself not say:

Of course they can do whatever they want and employees can act with impunity. I mean, all we are are loyal customers who send them money year after year.

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