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Update: Castro Valley Forum Discontinues Facebook Page After Reader's Complaint to Editor

An uproar of upset Castro Valley Forum fans react to the local paper's Facebook page being discontinued after a reader complained to the editor about content posted on the site.

Updated Thursday Dec. 14 at 5:30 p.m.

At 11:30 a.m. Wednesday, the Castro Valley Forum announced on its Facebook page that it would discontinue the site due to a complaint a reader made to the editor regarding its content.

Within an hour of the posting, more than 100 upset users commented. Many said they were shocked over editor Fred Zehnder's decision to take down the site due to the complaint made by one person.

It was also announced that reporter Robert Souza "would continue to feature the same hometown themes, discussions, topics and photos" on a new Facebook page unaffiliated with the Castro Valley Forum.

Readers immediately fired their questions, comments and concerns on the new page, Castro Valley News.

Souza responded by saying "a fan objected to a post regarding the gentleman on the segueway—and felt compelled to complain to our editor—who requested the site be pulled."

Zehnder was unavailable for comment.

Rochelle Doss, the reader who e-mailed her complaint to Zehnder, had never commented on the Castro Valley Forum page before, according to Souza's Facebook response.

In effort to try and resurrect the former Castro Valley Forum Facebook page, readers created the Occupy the CV Forum: Save the CV Forum FB Page!.

Doss posted a comment on the page in response to the whole situation:

Nobody has heard back from the Editor. Including the person who made the complaint that caused all of this. I should know because I wrote "the letter". If anybody is interested in reading my "all powerful" complaint to the editor, I am happy to share. Frankly, I don't care for the fact that the CV forum editor is using me and my letter as his scapegoat. I wrote a letter because I saw content posted by the Forum I disagreed with, so I said something! I also wrote a complaint letter to Waste Management that night (I haven't heard back from them either). I didn't make any demands or threats,I exercised my right to free speech and made a complaint. I think removing the FB page was an inappropriate response by the editor. There is one person who had the power to pull the plug on the page, and it was not the person who had one complaint! I am not a community activist, but I am very active in my community. I love living in Castro Valley and am really sad and "dislike" that all of this has happened.

She shared the e-mail she had sent to Zehnder on Occupy the CV Forum: Save the CV Forum FB Page! a few posts later.

She told Patch on Thursday that she made no threats about taking legal action against the publication. Doss said she also did not intend to shut the site down with her complaint.

"Honestly, I thought it would go ignored," she said. "I am quite disappointed they pulled the page."

However, she said she stands by her opinion about the "segway post." Doss interpreted it as a form of gossip for singling out an individual "without him knowing what was being said about him — good or bad," she said.

The former Castro Valley Forum Facebook site had more than 1,800 user "likes," as of Wednesday afternoon before shutting down.

By 1 p.m., users no longer could access the Facebook page, despite the announcement saying it would be discontinued in a few days.

Castro Valley Patch will update this story as more information is made available.

Mac McCarthy December 15, 2011 at 05:30 AM
First, this would have been a better article if it actually explained what the article had been about, and what the complainer complained about. Second, it looks to me like the editor has gotten tired of being shot at, and just took down the FB page as an overreaction. (The complaining letter-writer says she didn't expect that or ask for that or want that.)
Thomas December 16, 2011 at 05:12 AM
Note: I posted this at ““Castro Valley News” prior this post. As predicted, it was deleted and I was blocked from posting again. This in answer to a question by ‘Mary’ who asked me why I posted a comment associated with the CV Patch’s story about the CV Forum’s Facebook page being taken down. Mary, have you perused truth-cv.blogspot.com and read the words and posts of Robert Souza, who is a reporter for the CV Forum? I have a strong opinion that I was responsible for him being fired for a short time as a reporter for the CV Forum. I notified the owners of the CV Forum of the content on his Myspace page, content unbecoming of a member of the Fourth Estate. All documented at truth-cv.blogspot.com in Mr. Souza’s own words. I could go on forever about the lies and perfidy he undertook to distance himself from his own folly. Mr. Souza undertook damage control in the most despicable manner possible. He disavowed he had anything to do with HIS Myspace page AND put the blame on a co-worker. He posted a comment, as Emma, the person he accused of all the posts that HE made at HIS Myspace page. In the comment, Emma/ Actually Mr. Souza, made this comment: Why can't you respond to any of these comments? Do you fear exposure to the truth that you've tried to destroy the community paper and the reputation of a good reporter? Shame on you! Due to space limitations: End of Part One.
Thomas December 16, 2011 at 05:16 AM
Part Two, beginning: Mr. Souza unequivocally stated, that Emma Krasov, a reporter and co-worker at the Castro Valley Forum concocted my blog, http://truth-cv.blogspot.com/ Mr. Souza also referred to Emma Krasov as a 'hack "ARTS" writer' and referred to Jeff Torres as, 'an even worse former "SPORTS" writer.' Mr. Souza concluded his unfounded tirade by stating that, Ms. Krasov and Mr. Torres, "combined could not write their way out of a wet paper bag!" It is my opinion that Mr. Souza made all of the comments at my blog to divert public opinion of him as a liar, fraud and phony because he really feared he would lose his job at the CV Forum. What Mr. Souza did not know then and will only find out when he reads this, is that I had no intention of making my blog at truth-cv.blogspot.com public or notifying other than those he worked with and the owners of the CV forum. Mary, you asked my motive. I did not appreciate being branded a liar by Mr. Souza when all I did was put up what he had written or posted on his Myspace page. Instead of asking me why, ask Mr. Souza why he won’t admit his lies and own up to what he posted on his Myspace page, and apologize to me and Emma Krasov and the others he maligned on his Myspace page. May we hear from you, Mr. Souza? Today, December 15, 2011, is the anniversary of the First Amendment to the Constitution. I find it fitting that on this day I am able to use this forum to speak freely and not be censored. End of part two
Jodie December 22, 2011 at 06:49 PM
If she wasn't asking for that to happen, then why complain? She expected it to be ignored?!? Why complain. People complain just to complain. All she simply had to do was unfollow the page. I think the forum over reacted but he probably gets nonsense complaints constantly by people with nothing better to do. Anybody would be frustrated after awhile.
Jeff Torres June 05, 2012 at 07:39 PM
Excuse me.... I think there were a number of very well written articles after the paper was purchased by Fred Zehnder

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