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New Rules


MrPotatoTed
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Hi folks,

As you can see in the moderator forum, we have added the following rules which were approved by a majority vote of the mods.

1) Do not tag people with the intent of arguing with them if they have not previously posted in that thread. (So tagging somebody to give a counterpoint to something they’ve said in a thread is fine, but tagging people not in the thread just to list their perceived faults is not.)  

2) Additionally, we are prohibiting the creation of threads for the specific and known purpose of annoying a single targeted user, and here I am of course referring to the Mambo No 5 crew.

Each violation of either of the above rules would be a one week ban.  As with most things, this would require a majority vote of whatever mods are available within 24 hours of the report.

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Just now, Patine said:

Are you conflating Paradox polls and Mambo No. 5 threads in intention and purpose, there? Might want to be careful, Pringles.

No, just the fact that everything ultimately ends up annoying you in some way. In fact, eventually something else is gonna be found that "annoys" you, and then we'll end up with another one of these. 

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4 minutes ago, Pringles said:

No, just the fact that everything ultimately ends up annoying you in some way. In fact, eventually something else is gonna be found that "annoys" you, and then we'll end up with another one of these. 

As stated, we'll require a majority vote of the mods for each week-long ban.  Paradox polls serve a purpose regardless of how any individual might feel about the games.  The Mambo No 5 references are clearly just to annoy Patine, and if we're going to crack down on Patine (see rule 1) we're also going to crack down on those who go out of their way to intentionally stir him up (see rule 2).

Let's make this a better forum.

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The meme response here would be to deride these rules as literally 1984, but honestly these are fine. Even without the context for the second rule, it's a good prohibition on targeting threads against other users. And these are equal opportunity rules, the first one primarily affects Patine just as the second one primarily affects the Mambo No.5 crew. So, overall, I support these. 

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9 minutes ago, MrPotatoTed said:

As stated, we'll require a majority vote of the mods for each week-long ban.  Paradox polls serve a purpose regardless of how any individual might feel about the games.  The Mambo No 5 references are clearly just to annoy Patine, and if we're going to crack down on Patine (see rule 1) we're also going to crack down on those who go out of their way to intentionally stir him up (see rule 2).

Let's make this a better forum.

Nevertheless, I will obviously comply with these rules. However I've voiced my qualms. As appeasement is never a good option when they all stem from the same root. 

The largest moderator action I believe that has been taken was a mute of a user. I will say I remain confident that eventually it will end up being that user once more when that time unfortunately comes again. 

Nuff said from me. 

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1 minute ago, Patine said:

Appeasement? That's quite an - over the top - term, there, don't you think? Considering it's commonly used historical root comes down to one set of policies in one time period by two weak men to one specific, particular, infamous ambitious man. Are you sure you're not being hyperbolic and melodramatic here?

Do you realize who you're talking to? Look at the profile picture

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1 minute ago, Patine said:

Effectively, if he's implying I'm anything remotely close to Hitler, he's absolutely NOT prepared for the real, adult world, to be honest. 😛 

That's obviously not the implication. I'd never say that of anyone here. 

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Also, Patine, I'm going to guess with how many of these I'm seeing here that you quoted me, and I'm just going to bring it to your attention that I've blocked you. This isn't meant to be an insult, but my interactions with you were becoming too heated and common for me to want to view your posts anymore. So don't interact with me, I won't see it. Thanks.

Screenshot (1855).png

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25 minutes ago, Pringles said:

 

The largest moderator action I believe that has been taken was a mute of a user. 

I’ve banned a few people, some permanently if they were clearly spammers or otherwise clearly not intending to become actual members of the community (like the guy who showed up every seven months to promote a anti-vaccine conspiracy page and then leave again).  Others have been temporarily banned for various infractions — most of these have eventually returned, some have chosen not to.

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I actually don’t even remember who made the joke, but I actually thought it was funny.  Other mods jumped on it before I could let them know it was okay, as they took it more seriously than I did.  But I appreciate their vigilance all the same.

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these rule changes are fine, despite my inner response of wanting to make haha funny 1986 joke
i'd like to note that my enjoyment of the song Mambo No. 5 is not an attempt to upset patine, and i'm not sure why he's personally offended by the song. but anyway.

overall, good job Ted, Dobs, V and Dakota. I can't particularly say who did or didn't support these changes, so I'm not going to blindly guess who did/didn't and just say good job to everyone.

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1 hour ago, mark2 said:

overall, good job Ted, Dobs, V and Dakota. I can't particularly say who did or didn't support these changes, so I'm not going to blindly guess who did/didn't and just say good job to everyone.

For transparency's sake, it was ultimately unanimous.  Dobs just hadn't had a chance to sign on before we reached a majority.  He later signed on and agreed.

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3 hours ago, mark2 said:

these rule changes are fine, despite my inner response of wanting to make haha funny 1986 joke
i'd like to note that my enjoyment of the song Mambo No. 5 is not an attempt to upset patine, and i'm not sure why he's personally offended by the song. but anyway.

overall, good job Ted, Dobs, V and Dakota. I can't particularly say who did or didn't support these changes, so I'm not going to blindly guess who did/didn't and just say good job to everyone.

It was @MrPotatoTed mainly. I argued for a progressive penalty that increased the ban length for each infraction but allowed the penalty bracket to be less severe or even reset for long-term good behavior. 

I accepted the 1 week ban rule fairly readily though. I hope it works. 

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I've been busy the last few days with some family things and have only just gotten around to looking at this thread. 

First off, I'm fine with the changes. What I specifically question is why was this the inciting incident? I simply don't get it. One poster can say vile things about another, and we're told that there's nothing that anyone can do about it. Sure, fine. I backed off when we were told that it's going to be a pretty laissez-faire way to handle things. I was cool with that. I ended up blocking said user and, if you will have noticed, I have not interacted with his content since that happened a little over three weeks ago. 

The thing we ban is...posting about Mambo No.5? The first reaction I had to this was: "you're kidding me". You'll notice that I've also never once made a post in reference to the song or anything, so it's not like I'm wanting to partake in it myself. 

A few days ago when the first thread was locked, I was incredulous. But it was said to be a one-off, so I didn't say anything. Now that it's permanent, and no action or restrictions have been placed on the other party, is frankly ridiculous. I'll show what I'm meaning here. 

image.png.d6722487fd7c55e4d2fa109ac7af5257.png

This was given in response to one of my posts last month - which started my blocking of said poster. It accused my thinking, or words that I posted in that thread, of quote being "anti-intellectual, unethical, unthinking, and monstrous". Nothing happened because of that charge. The excuses that it related only to thinking that I may have held is preposterous. It's one step away from calling me an unethical monster. 

This would be fairly offensive to anyone who it was posted about. Yet, I didn't report it or say anything besides a response in the thread that I was blocking that poster, of which I am still resolved to do. No apology was given, nor any ounce of regret shown. The policy at the time was to give a relative free reign over the forum - so I didn't say anything. I'm lodging my protest now because it seems to have changed. Since, I have said nothing on this forum about that poster, but he remains resolved to take pot shots at me whenever able to. 

The fact that it was thought to be more appropriate to ban posting about a stupid song than to actually do anything about what I posted above is mind-boggling. 

I know we're all trying our best. But if we're instituting rules, I expect them to be fair and protect everyone in the server, not just one person. 

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Fair questions, and the short answer is that eventually there's a straw that breaks the camel's back.  

If nobody was complaining...or if only one person/one side was complaining, I think we'd all be content to just ignore it.  But we tend to receive a lot complaints from both sides, and eventually we have to actually do something about it.

We agree that the rules need to be fair and protect everyone.  This is why we didn't just stick with rule one, which is pretty clearly targeted at Patine.  We also created rule two, which is clearly targeted at the people who go out of their way to antagonize him for no reason -- only further triggering his poor behavior.

Also, for the sake of transparency, two individuals received a week long ban today for derailing a thread with endless off-topic personal attacks.  Let's have less of that around here, please.

Thank you!

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5 minutes ago, MrPotatoTed said:

Fair questions, and the short answer is that eventually there's a straw that breaks the camel's back.  

If nobody was complaining...or if only one person/one side was complaining, I think we'd all be content to just ignore it.  But we tend to receive a lot complaints from both sides, and eventually we have to actually do something about it.

We agree that the rules need to be fair and protect everyone.  This is why we didn't just stick with rule one, which is pretty clearly targeted at Patine.  We also created rule two, which is clearly targeted at the people who go out of their way to antagonize him for no reason -- only further triggering his poor behavior.

Also, for the sake of transparency, two individuals received a week long ban today for derailing a thread with endless off-topic personal attacks.  Let's have less of that around here, please.

Thank you!

In my case, I don't think Rule 1 necessarily helps me. I was involved in the discussion, but does that necessarily mean that I deserved to be told what I was told in response? I don't think it's appropriate either. It reads as though as long as I'm not tagged in a post, pretty much anything goes. Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong or if I didn't read enough of the original rules, but that is what I understood from reading them. 

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7 minutes ago, Hestia said:

In my case, I don't think Rule 1 necessarily helps me. I was involved in the discussion, but does that necessarily mean that I deserved to be told what I was told in response? I don't think it's appropriate either. It reads as though as long as I'm not tagged in a post, pretty much anything goes. Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong or if I didn't read enough of the original rules, but that is what I understood from reading them. 

Understandable.  I'll be honest that the bit you quoted above doesn't particularly stand out to me as unusual.  It's similar enough in content to things that Patine has said about me as well.  It's also similar enough in content to the things that myself and other people have said about/to Patine.

And thus our slippery slope: is every insult, real or imagined, a bannable offense?  Where is the line drawn?

Drawing it at mambo number 5 likely earns us some eye rolls, and fair enough.  But I think it's reasonable to ask that we not create entire threads dedicated to making fun of one specific user.

Likewise, as I just said above, we DID ban two people today (for one week each) for trading endless off-topic insults derailing another thread.  So, as always, majority vote of the mods prevails because writing blanket rules to flawlessly cover every possible incident in advance is an unrealistic and perhaps undesirable goal.

I'm open to other ideas on how to realistically handle these things, but the challenge we face is that few people are innocent.  Those who complain tend to also be the same people who receive complaints against them.

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Just now, MrPotatoTed said:

Understandable.  I'll be honest that the bit you quoted above doesn't particularly stand out to me as unusual.  It's similar enough in content to things that Patine has said about me as well.  It's also similar enough in content to the things that myself and other people have said about/to Patine.

And thus our slippery slope: is every insult a bannable offense, real or imagined, a bannable offense?  Where is the line drawn?

Drawing it at mambo number 5 likely earns us some eye rolls, and fair enough.  But I think it's reasonable to ask that we not create entire threads dedicated to making fun of one specific user.

Likewise, as I just said above, we DID ban two people today (for one week each) for trading endless off-topic insults derailing another thread.  So, as always, majority vote of the mods prevails because writing blanket rules to flawlessly cover every possible incident in advance is an unrealistic and perhaps undesirable goal.

I'm open to other ideas on how to realistically handle these things, but the challenge we face is that few people are innocent.  Those who complain tend to also be the same people who receive complaints against them.

I think there's pretty clear differences between posting about a dumb song and being close to alleging someone is a monster or unethical. Just because this is common doesn't mean that it should be. If there isn't an express rule - fine. I don't think that's right, and I don't think that it is fair. If Mambo No. 5 is considered making fun of a specific user, then how isn't being called unethical or monstrous considered in the same light? I just don't get it. I think that it's obviously worse. 

If you say that is every insult a bannable offense a slippery slope, then where can you draw the line? I think that's a false question. The answer is always: somewhere. Drawing it at Mambo No. 5 helps one individual. Then why draw it there at all? I'd prefer that there be a rule not to refer to someone else or their line of thinking in a derogatory manner (or even just to leave out anything beyond saying it's wrong/flawed, etc.), but I understand that a lot of that has flown back and forth. I'd settle for: if someone asks you to not respond to their posts, or at least mention them by name (@ or not), that it be respected. My name has been invoked without being @'ed. 

If that isn't possible, I would like for all reports to be taken into account equally and actually looked at if we're going case-by-case. Obviously there's been some reporting behind the Mambo No. 5 thing before it came to be a rule. However, I was told months back that I should just block him and not report anymore (which appears to have changed with his requests to block the mentioning of Mambo No.5). That's why I didn't report anything the last time is because I had no confidence that it would actually be looked at besides "just another report" and thrown out. 

Just because the same people are complaining about the same person and vice versa doesn't mean that the infractions are equal (or even real). That's what I've been frustrated with this entire time. What I said in that thread didn't come close to the response I got. For others, that may be different, I get it. But I get tired of hearing that excuse when it's not applicable. 

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I don't have a lot more to say about it, except that while we do reference "the mambo no 5 crew", I've also been clear that the problem is in creating an entire thread for people to attack one user.  If Patine had created a thread inviting others to join in with him in calling you a monster, that would not be tolerated.

I'm only 1/4 of a mod team that rules by majority vote, so I think I've said enough on my own views on the topic.   All I can tell you is that we do in fact look at every report -- about half of them call for us to crack down on Patine, but the other half point out people doing the exact same thing to Patine.  This leaves us stuck, unless we intend for the mods to be the only people still allowed to post here.  Ha.

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My last point will be to say that there should be no difference between an entire thread to attack one user and getting attacked by a user. It's the same situation. Just because a thread wasn't created doesn't mean that the same intent wasn't shown. And I'll address that at the entire mod team, since it seems to be the prevailing notion. 

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2 minutes ago, MrPotatoTed said:

This leaves us stuck, unless we intend for the mods to be the only people still allowed to post here.  Ha.

Given that all mods indeed get involved in these kinds of disputes at some points, (Vcczar talking about Patine's appearance in that really funny post, Dob's doing something to the point Patine calls into question his moderatorship, and you getting into the same kind of arguments in one thread while you lock up another.) Maybe the same considerations should be said of mods as well...

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Just now, Pringles said:

Given that all mods indeed get involved in these kinds of disputes at some points, (Vcczar talking about Patine's appearance in that really funny post, Dob's doing something to the point Patine calls into question his moderatorship, and you getting into the same kind of arguments in one thread while you lock up another.) Maybe the same considerations should be said of mods as well...

Frankly, I agree.  

This forum was founded on the ideals of free speech -- most of us ended up here because of over-moderation on the previous forum, and we had no desire to do the same.  This is in part why we have four moderators and majority votes, rather than the single moderator of a past forum.  This is also why we're really just getting around to creating specific rules after this forum has already been around for...what?  A year?  Maybe longer?

But while we wanted a forum built on free speech, it's become clear that many of our users do not.  The formal complaints about various things said in each thread are endless.  Fair enough.  We can adapt.

But...when we do adapt, we get complaints about that as well.  Because people don't "really" want us to crackdown against asshole behavior.  They just want us to crack down on ONE asshole in particular.

Again, I'm only 1/4 of the mod team.  I can be overruled on anything and everything.

But speaking only for myself, I'm either going to crack down on all asshole behavior, or none of it, but I'm not going to repeatedly bring down the hammer on one person while ignoring everyone else who does the same damned thing.

And yes, case by case basis as well.  That's largely what we've been trying to do so far.  But it doesn't appear to actually be working.

 

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4 minutes ago, MrPotatoTed said:

But while we wanted a forum built on free speech, it's become clear that many of our users do not. 

Here's a counterpoint. Has it occurred to you that the qualm isn't necessarily against free speech? But more so against those who cannot handle free speech?

Most everyone on this forum can largely handle each other perfectly fine. Both in our ups, and our downs. 

However, there is one who cannot. And while many may not want to admit it, it is true. 

And yes, you can counterpoint by saying, "Then, what about everyone else who can't handle this person's freedom of speech!"

These problems often stem from the same root. The same repetitive argument-starters that happen again, and again, and again. Many may not want to admit it, but it is the cold truth.

Here's another truth bomb. If action were taken against this said user, the forum would largely see a state of tranquility, and normalcy. That is a fact. A fact even one of the moderators has admitted.

And finally, at the end of the day, if major action were taken against both parties. Say even a permanent ban. I almost guarantee you there is only one among that group that would go batshit insane over it. Probably even threatening to sue Dakota even. Emailing everybody constantly. Frantically panicking. 

It almost makes me wonder as if that is why action is not taken. For fear of the aftermath. 

You and others may not want to admit it. But that's how I feel about it. And that's what history throughout the going on 2 years that I've been here has shown. Ever since we left Anthony's forum to where we are now.

 

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