I don't know if this is the right place for this question or not, but here goes.
I've just been banned from a forum, with no explanation. They didn't just take away my posting privileges; I can't even access the site to read discussions or contact the administrators.
I tried another browser, but that didn't work, so I assume they have some sort of script that detects my DNS, then steers me into a brick wall?
Anyway, I wondered if there's a way to view websites that have banned users, allowing me to view it as if I was a regular non-member.
Sounds like they have blocked your IP address. You'd probably need to view the site from someone else's house, or change your IP address somehow (which can be done, but is not my area).
One of my problems here as a former Team Leader was the inability to keep a permanently banned member banned permanently. I'd prefer not to give you any guidance on how one member got around his multiple bans but it is possible. Be forewarned, though, that as soon as your identity is discovered, the forum moderators will "Insta-Ban" without notice as many times as it takes until "you" get tired of "your game" (I am not accusing you - just "reliving" the nightmares from the POV of a moderator).
Having said all that, the lack of explanation is indicative of a MASSIVE violation of that forum's rules. At SitePoint, there aren't many that would generate an "Insta-Ban" but I can tell you that they are very serious and patently obvious. If you'd been "infracted" leading up to the ban, you were warned and sufficient accumulation of "infraction points" is sufficient reason to ban. Unfortunately, there are members who were only here to abuse the boards (and SitePoint members) - repeatedly. IMHO, it's better to be rid of that type of member than allow them back ... EVER.
Every can be a very long time. I don't believe it's a secret (moderators - edit if necessary) but there are two classes of banning: Permanent and two years. Give that forum a rest for a while and try again after things settle down.
Without being accusatory, find another forum (than the one you were banned from) and abide by their rules. I hope to see you around here for a long time!
Are you sure that you have been banned, did you receive an email from the forum saying that they had banned you? As a forum owner, I've had instances where a member's IP was blocked from the site by a security update, even though we did not wish to ban that member.
If you just want to view the forum you could try using a proxy site.
Hmmm...that is a possibility. They were having some sort of software problem that was causing problems for all the forum members. Then, when I visited the site, I was redirected to a a page that had "cgi" in the URL. I can't remember what the message said, but I thought it meant I was banned.
However, the entire site is down now, and they're once again tinkering with their software. So maybe I misunderstood the message.
Otherwise, I'll have to research proxy sites. I've heard the term before, but I've never used one.
A proxy site basically allows you to visit a website without revealing your IP address to that site. They are really simple to use, once you visit one all you need to do is enter the URL of the site you wish to visit. You can easily find a proxy site on Google. One thing to note is that forum owners will often block the IP addresses of proxy sites, for the very purpose of keeping out banned members and spammers, obviously I don't know whether the forum concerned does that or not.
Also I wouldn't recommend using such free public anonymous proxies if you are sending user details or logging into a site as they can be intercepted by other parties and your data stolen or compromised. I suspect by what you are said it was an error with the forum or their servers.
Wow, that's bizarre. The site's back up, running on new software, I'm not banned, and I've been given four awards. There is a political subforum on the site, and some people don't like the things I have to say and were encouraging others to put me on their ignore list, complaining to the mods, etc. So that's why I was suspicious from the beginning.
Anyway, thanks for the tips.
You went from being to being banned to getting awards? It sounds like your problem is over. lol