I'm not responding here to those idiots with the single purpose names disappearing after one or a few posts and never contributing in a serious discussion but to those that help them unwillingly and have names well know also from serious discussions. The first kind of posters are beyond argumentation but you mudcatters perhaps aren't.
You are helping them to ruin Mudcat by acknowledging their posts. You swallow their baits hook and sinker. Completely pointless threads get dozens of pointless responses. Personal attacks get more responses than questions for the background of a song and you call that mudcatting. It seems to me that some of you in these cases just get verbal diarrhoea both in amount ant content, or, to put it slightly nicer, are unable to hold back the ink. And sometimes you even manage to sink nearly as low as the person that got you mad in the first place.
Don't you see that a further increase of pointless posts will ruin this place? I don't think it is good for Mudcat that, for instance, someone posting as 'Lyndon Larouche' gets more rections in a week than, e.g., Malcolm Douglas.
To end my rant a bit more constructive:
Never ever add pointless posts to a pointless thread.
If there's a personal attack (by a person with an unknown name), just leave it completely to the one attacked to respond or not. Share your sympathy or outrage in personal mails to the one attacked, but do not post here.
The person attacked may ignore the flamer (as Shambles did with 'Barfy'), may tell them to get lost (as Moonchild did with those ever changing names) or may mockingly pretend to take them serious (as Catspaw did with Catspaw48). (Boy, (s)he was really lacking phantasy, '48 I mean, in the choice of that name. A name with much more parodying phantasy would have been 'catspam49', but I digress.)
My personal preference is the first method, but I have a deep sympathy for the other two as well. However, I think the best policy is to leave it completely to the one attacked to respond or not.