In RC, the driver threads started with the Lewis Hamilton thread which was a discussion about a new up-and-coming driver who ought to make it into F1. Over a period of years the title of the thread was taken as a banner to discuss any and all aspects in which Lewis was involved, including lots of non-motorsport discussion, and it then spread to all other drivers who now have their own topic.
Threads like these have been looked upon by some as a 'fan appreciation' thread where dissenting opinions should not be given voice and by others as places to go to troll. It is this environment where the labels 'fanboy' and 'hater' or 'anti' have become ingrained and then employed more widely across the forum. During a race, progress is followed here instead of in the race thread or live forum; when a site releases a poll each driver thread is used to discuss that drivers position within it; when there is an incident, the thread for each driver involved becomes part of the extended battleground. In reality, the threads have become micro-communities where fans of particular drivers tend to discuss every aspect of F1 with other posters they feel comfortable with. Potentially good topics of discussion often go unnoticed by the more general membership who may have had something positive to contribute, because it was not clear the discussion was taking place.
We have decided that the threads are a barrier to the free flow of discussion and ideas and have taken the decision to ban driver threads as part of the introduction to our new rules, which can be found here (link).
As always, we are happy to listen to your views and opinions on how the forum is moderated but please, by PM only.