Did you have your formal hearing yet? If so, did something come up? From time to time, I will have people tell me they "heard" that what you write here can be used against you. However, I am not aware of anyone actually using anything from this site at a formal hearing against a member. I would be interested to know if this actually happened. It is a violation of the terms of service of this site, and under Computer Fraud Abuse Act, a violation of civil and criminal law for anyone, government agent or not, to access this site for this purpose.
As always, anyone is free to post or not post and they should take whatever steps they feel appropriate to preserve their anonymity. That said, I feel somewhat mixed about such "warnings" in posts. Like I said, I have not ever heard about someone being confronted with something posted on this site. (And, if this was introduced by the PEB at the hearing, I would personally object to it, state that it was not part of the MEB, that you never had an opportunity to review the "record" they are trying to introduce, and I would attack it on the basis of they can't show it was you, it was not authenticated, is hearsay, it's irrelevant, and probably about 10 other objections that could come to mind- including that whoever was the proponent, which would have to be one of the PEB members, was thereby disqualified from hearing the case). In my almost 7 years of representing members at PEB's, I have only been involved with, if memory serves right, 3 cases where the PEB undertook their own "investigation" and sought to introduce evidence gleaned from online research (none of the cases involved this site- one, that is most memorable, was where a board member questioned the PTSD stressor, stating that his research showed no deaths or obituaries of the named Soldiers. After a brief recess, I presented a copy of both an obituary and a medal citation that described the details of the attack). So, bottom line, I have not seen any significant "research" or monitoring of this site. The normal format of the PEB does not really lend itself to such research and introduction of evidence by board members and, finally, another measure of "protection" is that the board really has a high workload and does not have time to spend on here looking things up and trying to connect them to present cases. (On the other hand, I do know that many board members are aware of this site- I have discussed it with several of them).
So, this loops back to my initial point. People are free to post or not and are responsible for their own words. But, the mixed feelings I have is that this site has helped, and continues to help, many servicemembers by answering their questions, providing information and references, and giving a sense of community and shared experience. I don't want people to feel scared coming here.
As for your case, it strikes me that a denial of a summary adjudication is not that unusual. They are both granted and denied all the time and I would be hard pressed to find either a causative factor or even correlation between what is posted on here and the outcome of a request for a summary. All a denial usually means is that the board is not convinced and would like to hear additional evidence. Though you have deleted/edited your posts, from what you posted before, I would have been very surprised if they granted a summary. I don't know what is in your case file, but if things were as you suggested and there was a lack of supporting evidence available to you to submit (though, it may have been in your file), I am not sure I would have even bothered with a summary adjudication request without such strong evidence. And, while it is, I suppose, possible that a board member stated, "no, we are denying based on online posts" this seems an extremely far-fetched scenario. Normally, the board would just tell your counsel their decision without explaining something extraneous to the record.
Now, I may be 100% wrong and the PEB boards have been stalking and monitoring this site. However, especially with the AF board, this seems extremely unlikely. I know all of the board members, the staff, and (with the exception of several newly assigned attorneys) the attorneys there. I strongly suspect that your fears are not founded. Either way, I hope you get a great outcome.
Thank you so much for your time and explanation. Please don't misunderstand, I am not telling people not to post/use this site. Merely to keep in mind it is public. This site has been a very helpful and answered a lot of question. I do not want to discourage anyone from using a very valuable tool. In my particluar case, I was not told my summary was denied based on my online posts. I was only told it was denied. With the tons of people on this site somehow I was not vague enough with my questions. The trouble lies in that my post were read back to me from a print out....that was unexpected. Therefore I just wanted others to beware so that they are not blindsided as I was.
If someone were to break Federal law by violating TOS through "collecting evidence", to whom would you report the violation? Interesting that the PEB tried to use this tactic in J8ed's case and wonder what recourse he has.
Yes, that is an interesting question and it raises all sorts of issues about who has standing, etc., to raise issues.
When I first heard/read about the law on this point, I was surprised to find that the DOJ/FBI has investigated cases for violations of websites Terms of Service. Usually, this is hackers who are investigated. However, there are cases I have read where just the violation was pursued. So, those agencies might be the ones to complain to. That said, it raises whether a member can or whether it would have to be me as the site owner.
On the same tack, though, as the site owner, were I to be mad/upset enough, I could also file a private lawsuit. I could name individuals (perhaps "John Doe" defendant's until I could subpoena ISP's /government agencies to figure out actual identities).
The issue of how the "evidence" would be treated in an individual case is a different issue altogether than criminal/civil liability.
All of this is fairly speculative though. I can't say that I would never get fired up enough to go down the road of suing. However, I have not been confronted with any facts to make me think violations are happening in such a way as to provoke me into looking into the case. Of course, if any government agent wants to shake the dice and see if they poke a stick in my eye, will I poke back (and name them individually, and argue that they are personally liable, perhaps suing them from across the country in my local Federal District Court), well that is on them. As a side point, too, if I thought this was happening, I would raise heck and probably seek media exposure, and ask why the DoD or military does not want members having access to information about their rights.
(As a further aside, though nothing ever came of it, I have in the past been contacted by major command's PAO offices asking if I minded if they participated and provided their own answers to posts with an "official" stamp on the answers. I told them, sure, the more participation and collaboration, the better...but, that was more than a year ago and they never followed up).
I doubt that anyone involved officially in his PEB read his posts to him.
Now, I will say that I have met people in real life who posted on this site and another site; the reason I knew is because they posted personal information, when known together with the info I knew about them in real life made figuring out who they were easy.
But I never told them because that would have sacrificed my anonymity.
I suggest people to keep posting; but no one here needs to know what post you are at or when you deployed. Just knowing you are in a WTU or CBWTU is enough and that you served in a combat zone is enough if it applies to you. That is. Ecause there are special rules for repaying severance if the condition was diagnosed in a combat zone.
If you remember, he posted from the FPEB and asked something that really narrowed him down. They stated that they checked the computer for any info and pictures on you. I would not be surprised if they did not print it of and read it back. I also don't feel he said anything that bad, I did but I'm out now. When I was going through FPEB, my location stated WPAFB and I believe I narrowed myself down as well but nobody said a thing.
In the recent post by NWLivewire there was an article that stated
"In some cases, Madigan psychiatrists found candidates for medical retirements who lied about deployments or who posted information on social media web sites that contradicted what they told clinicians."
The reason I posted that article from the OLYMPIAN Newpaper is for the main content, that is, to INFORM ALL SOLDIERS WHO HAD TO GO THROUGH THE IDES PROCESS OR LEGACY SINCE 2008 AT MADIGAN AND WERE EVALUATED FOR THEIR MENTAL HEALTH ISSUES DURING THIS TIME PERIOD BY THE FORENSIC PSYCHIATRY DEPARTMENT.
"...Now the once-golden unit based on the grounds of Joint Base Lewis-McChord is under fire as the Army carries out at least three separate investigations. The Army and elected leaders want to know whether the team adjusted behavioral health diagnoses for the right reasons, or whether it shortchanged service members who should get full PTSD benefits.
Read more here: http://www.theolympian.com/2012/03/...d-psychiatrists-reputation.html#storylink=cpy "
It looks like many Soldiers got screwed by this department on their mental health asessments.
THIS ARTICLE SHOULD BE MANDATORY READING TO ALL SOLDIERS THAT WENT THROUGH MADIGAN FOR THEIR MEDICAL BOARDS AND WHO HAD PSYCH ISSUES CHANGED OR UNDER-RATED OR NOT RATED AT ALL.
You know I couldn't find that section but that is one of my issues, article to long. When I went to my FPEB, we were told that they would review facebook, myspace and such to see pictures and stuff. They watched us in the waiting room and at whatwe carried. If you had a bad back and a backpack full of stuff it must not hurt that much. I don't think I would have a problem with stuff like that. If your so bad off that you can't work, can you go to school? I'm all for catching people gaming the system but I don't think that is what was happening. The AF assumes you can't have PTSD because you never left the base in Iraq or Afghanistan. What if 50% or more of those attacks occured close to you or you seen a lot of injuries or dead. It's just anxiety and depression and get over it. You need to learn to manage your time, become organized, or stop being so negative. Yes I'm talking about myself but there are a lot of others in this boat. I have been getting steadily worse for 8 yrs and all I want is to feel better. I'm glad they got caught now what about the others.