Unfortunately there are few forums these days where the owners make themselves publically known. I’ve known people eventually shut down popular and successful forums because they ended up spending their entire lives dealing with spam and trolls, and the they felt they were becoming more and more exposed and vulnerable to abuse. The posters who were banned would have been banned on most forums a long time ago – I was quite surprised Mark let it go on so long. Continously attacking new posters and insulting those who offered different opinions. If threats have been made then the police generally have the technology these days to track down and prosecute the culprits. If they are put on alert they can track IP addresses to various ISPs, and then those ISPs will monitor certain traffic to identify who is sending the messages. There are also various pattern matching algorithms out there that they can use to monitor certain behaviour and identify trolls.
Personally I don’t recall Mark directly talking up the market as a whole, but rather passing on whatever news releases were being published. In fact I remember one thread where we came to the conclusion that the market had fallen by a lot more than the official data was showing. I agree with Logan that the Spanish market needs to be much better regulated, however I don’t have too much sympathy for those who got burnt by the collapse. It was obvious the market was way too high and needed a correction, and if people moved their life savings into a market they were unfamiliar with then that’s their fault. Spanish property is risky, which means you need to carry out a lot of research and enter the waters slowly. Of course I have plenty of sympathy for the Priors and the illegal properties scandal, as there was nothing they could do about that. But those who bought without researching the market thoroughly got what they deserved. Markets go up and down. Not everyone can be a winner all the time.