Moderation Issues (6)

Please use this thread for (and only for) alerting admins to moderation issues and for raising complaints arising from particular decisions. We remind participants that TSZ is a benign dictatorship, the property of Dr. Elizabeth Liddle. All decisions regarding policy and implementation are hers alone.

1,457 thoughts on “Moderation Issues (6)

  1. KN,

    I’m very unhappy about the lack of transparency regarding the discussion between Mung and the other administrators. I’d like to know what Mung did to merit a loss of moderator powers, whether he really did what he is accused of doing, and whether or not the other moderators are acting appropriately.

    Amen.

  2. faded_Glory:
    Neil Rickert,

    Undoubtedly Lizzie is carefully observing these new developments in her long-term Internet experiment.

    It will be interesting to read her final analysis and conclusions, once the time comes for her to publish them.

    BRAVO!

  3. keiths:
    KN,
    Amen.

    In all the time I’ve been here I’ve had maybe half a dozen posts land in guano, and I’ve never, ever felt like I had to suppress any useful contribution.

    I generally think any comment that addresses the integrity or intelligence of another poster can be skipped over. I do a lot of skipping.

    My perspective is that I am an observer, here to learn from people trained in science and biology. On rare occasions I see an opportunity to contribute. Mostly, I post to get clarification on my own understanding. Am I seeing this correctly?

    So when arguments start, I use the scroll wheel. It burns very few calories.

  4. Alan,

    Mung was aware and involved in discussion with other admins prior to the suspension and I sent Mung a summarizing email on 11th March.

    The suspension occurred on the 7th:

    Alan in a PM to me [Mung] – March 7, 2019 8:28 pm:

    You will find your status amended to contributor pending discussions.

    You’re saying you waited four days before sending the “summarizing email”? Until after I had broken the news here?

    You suspended a fellow moderator — something the rules don’t allow you to do — and then waited four days before bothering to give him your reasons??

  5. keiths: You suspended a fellow moderator — something the rules don’t allow you to do — and then waited four days before bothering to give him your reasons??

    The intervening period was taken up with contacting the blog owner advising her of the situation and waiting for a response. I was expecting Lizzie to contact Mung directly. My email to Mung was a plan B, as I, and as I suspected and as it turns out, hadn’t heard from her.

  6. keiths:…something the rules don’t allow you to do…

    We’ve covered this. Lizzie expects her admins to act as they think best in her absence. She has granted us full plenipotentiary powers. In the case of disagreement, then a majority view will prevail.

  7. Alan,

    You suspended Mung, not Lizzie. It was your responsibility to inform him of the reasons for your action.

    And again, the rules do not permit you to suspend a fellow moderator.

  8. You’re a hypocrite, Alan. When it’s convenient for you, you claim that you’ve been given authority to do whatever you want. When it’s not convenient for you, you say “Oh, I can’t do that without Lizzie’s permission.”

    Case in point, in the header of this very page:

    We remind participants that TSZ is a benign dictatorship, the property of Dr. Elizabeth Liddle. All decisions regarding policy and implementation are hers alone.

    [emphasis added]

    Lizzie appointed Mung as moderator. That was her decision. She did not decide to suspend him. That was you, and it is not permitted by the rules.

    It also gives every indication of being the result of a temper tantrum on your part. You suspended Mung a mere eight minutes after he notified you that he was restoring me to Author status.

    It was a classic Alanism. You got pissed because Mung was reversing one of your abuses of moderator power, and so you committed another abuse by suspending him on the spot.

    And we are now in the midst of yet another moderation kerfuffle, thanks to you.

  9. keiths: Lizzie supplies the gold, and she appointed Mung as moderator. There is no rule allowing moderators to suspend a fellow moderator.

    This is well trod ground, her first rule was to trust her admins in her absence to use their best judgement , in this case a 3 admins best judgement was to suspend the moderation privileges of mung. The interesting scenario would have been a 2 for and 2 against.

  10. keiths: You suspended Mung, not Lizzie. It was your responsibility to inform him of the reasons for your action.

    There is no rule that says that it is his responsibility.

    And again, the rules do not permit you to suspend a fellow moderator.

    Just as a persuasive argument as usual.

  11. Alan
    Given that there is only one theist moderator there is the appearance of extreme impropriety here. I am going to assume there is a good reason for the action taken but the pieces I have read really make the site administration look very bad.

    Can you summarize why you would suspend our representative moderator without a formal and logical explanation? I assume you had a discussion with Mung prior to this action.

  12. keiths:
    You’re a hypocrite, Alan.When it’s convenient for you, you claim that you’ve been given authority to do whatever you want.When it’s not convenient for you, you say “Oh, I can’t do that without Lizzie’s permission.”

    Case in point, in the header of this very page:

    Lizzie appointed Mung as moderator. That was her decision.She did not decide to suspend him.That was you, and it is not permitted by the rules.

    It also gives every indication of being the result of a temper tantrum on your part.You suspended Mung a mere eight minutes after he notified you that he was restoring me to Author status.

    It was a classic Alanism.You got pissed because Mung was reversing one of your abuses of moderator power, and so you committed another abuse by suspending him on the spot.

    And we are now in the midst of yet another moderation kerfuffle, thanks to you.

    A lot to chew on here. I think your case is quite good, as long as the three mods had not already agreed on how to handle your participation and mung’s action was a clear violation of that agreement. Without those both being the case it’s hard not to see your description as apt, and the suspension as ultra vires.

  13. walto:… as long as the three mods had not already agreed on how to handle your participation and mung’s action was a clear violation of that agreement…

    which indeed was the case.

  14. Smart lad, that walto.
    And if you pay attention to J-Mac’s comment on the previous page…
    ETA: Aarg! Ninja’d

  15. Ok then. Again, thanks.

    Any chance he just forgot or misunderstood or something?

  16. walto and I discussed Alan’s hypocrisy in 2017:

    walto:

    Yes, While Alan is basically all over the place–against ex ante moderation except when he isn’t, has been granted vast powers by Lizzie at some times and none whatever at others (and it’s nobody’s business which times are which)…

    keiths:

    Exactly. And now he’s actually trying to deny it.

    We’re not idiots, Alan. Anyone can see that when you say this at one point…

    Neil and I are delegated absolute power by Lizzie…

    …and this at another…

    Without Lizzie’s input, admins are limited to deckchair rearrangement.

    …and…

    I’m not prepared to make any significant changes to rules without input from Lizzie and I will try and make contact with her again.

    …that you’re just covering your ass, saying whatever’s convenient at the moment.

    This censorship scheme of yours was a major screwup, but instead of acknowledging your mistake and fixing it, you’re fishing for excuses to leave it in place and contradicting yourself in the process.

  17. Mung,

    I just want you to know that I’m in your corner.
    I don’t know the details and I don’t wan’t to know.

    I just want you to know that when you are moderator TSZ is a better place

    peace

  18. Mung deserves a second chance!
    Without him, TSZ is going to devolve into the farmer’s wives’ association…
    It’s abiogenesis can be observed on this thread…

  19. walto,

    I think your case is quite good, as long as the three mods had not already agreed on how to handle your participation…

    Don’t forget, the only reason I had Contributor status rather than Author was because of previous moderation abuses: I posted an OP that, by Alan’s own admission, did not violate any rules. He suspended me for thirty days — an unprecedented step — despite the fact that my OP hadn’t violated any rules, and despite the rules not permitting suspensions at all. And then, even after the bogus suspension was over, my comments were held in pre-moderation and my status had been reduced to Contributor, requiring my OPs to be approved by a moderator before publication.

    Those were outright abuses, in response to an OP which did not violate any rules. By restoring me to Author status, Mung was doing the right thing and reversing an abuse. Alan didn’t like that — his personal grudge against me is well known — and so eight minutes later he was abusing his privileges again by suspending Mung.

  20. Alan:

    Yes, which why I’m still hoping for direct discussion which could resolve things amicably.

    walto:

    That’d be best, I think.

    It would have been best to have had that discussion before taking action. And the discussion should have been public. Moderator conduct is a moderation issue, and it should be discussed in the Moderation Issues thread.

    The notion that inter-moderator disputes are somehow Top Secret and cannot be discussed publicly is silly. Moderator conduct affects all of us.

  21. I should also note that besides admitting that my OP had violated no rules, Alan also admitted that he had suspended me in order to prevent me from criticizing the moderators.

    So Alan had no justification for the suspension, even if it had been allowed by the rules. It was amusing to watch the moderators try and fail over the next 30 days to come up with a justification for the suspension.

  22. That’s milk under the bridge, no? You may want to have several more thousand posts on it, but I’ve had way more than enough of it myself and am now moved onto L’affaire de mung. Talking about your suspension now is like watching Gilligan’s Island after a new season of Catastrophe has dropped.

    Did you deserve it? Did they fuck you for no reason? Who knows anymore? Will I be next? Maybe. If so, I’ll live.

    Anyhow, for you, I recommend this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x3021DigxHs

    Oh, and give my love to your buddy Patrick and thank him for Trump, woodja?

  23. walto,

    That’s milk under the bridge, no?

    It’s entirely relevant. Mung was reversing a moderation abuse stemming from that very kerfuffle. To suspend him for that — particularly when the rules don’t permit such suspensions — is ridiculous.

    Again:

    Those were outright abuses, in response to an OP which did not violate any rules. By restoring me to Author status, Mung was doing the right thing and reversing an abuse. Alan didn’t like that — his personal grudge against me is well known — and so eight minutes later he was abusing his privileges again by suspending Mung.

  24. keiths: Mung was reversing a moderation abuse stemming from that very kerfuffle.

    I’m not mung’s lawyer, but FWIW, I wouldn’t take that tack in the upcoming discussions if I were him.

  25. keiths:

    Mung was reversing a moderation abuse stemming from that very kerfuffle.

    walto:

    I’m not mung’s lawyer, but FWIW, I wouldn’t take that tack in the upcoming discussions if I were him.

    Whether he takes that tack or not, that’s what he was doing.

  26. Alan comes back from his big retirement announcement, to settle a score with Keiths whose only sin was being critical of Alan.

    Mung, using his best judgement lets Keiths back in, so Alan suspends Mung.

    So Alan’s just a fucking dipshit trying to get revenge against his critics (just like he has repeatedly done to me). And some people (the atheists who like an echo chamber to use for propoganda) say there doesn’t need to be transparency here.

    Fox and Friends -fair and balanced. Where else are you going to get your news.

  27. walto,

    Did you deserve it? Did they fuck you for no reason? Who knows anymore?

    We already know the answer to that. Alan admitted that he suspended me for criticizing the moderators, and he admitted that my OP violated no rules.

  28. phoodoo: atheists who like an echo chamber to use for propoganda) say there doesn’t need to be transparency here.

    Hey, man–this atheist has pressed for transparency fromthe get-go. There’s no correlation there.

  29. For my sins.

    I’ve raised some hackles among the other moderators. My major offenses as I see them:

    1. I removed the restriction on keiths, allowing him to post comments without moderator approval.
    2. I moved a comment made by Gregory from Guano back to Moderation Issues.
    3. I restored Author to J-Mac.
    4. I completed the action begun in #1 by restoring Author to keiths, allowing him to post an OP without moderator approval..

    The astute among you will notice a common thread. For the less astute, they all involved reversing the action of another moderator. I’m sure these all factored in, in some way, but #4 was the straw that broke the proverbial camel’s back it seems.

    Number 3 seems to have been equally egregious. Sorry J-Mac.

    I freely admit that I did not seek permission from the other moderators before making these changes. As far as the last of the 4, as I explained to Alan, I didn’t realize, given that #1 was a done deal, that it would be the problem it turned out to be.

    So apparently there was some disagreement over whether moderator actions were permitted to be unilateral. (That’s for those of you who love irony.)

  30. walto: Hey, man–this atheist has pressed for transparency fromthe get-go. There’s no correlation there.

    Well, you are not really an atheist 🙂

  31. There were discussions started to see if we could arrive at some understanding of what moderator actions would require approval from the other mods, but they were in the earliest stages, and I was the one that made the attempt to codify them.

    There was also the beginnings of a discussion about moving everyone to Contributor.

    That’s the subtext behind my perhaps cryptic notification to the other mods:

    I am changing keiths to give him Author rather than Contributor. I haven’t seen any consensus yet on this but I am at least notifying all of you.

    Whether or not I made some agreement with the other mods and somehow violated that agreement was not the evident reason for suspension.

    I never did receive Alan’s email, but he did PM me the content of it today.

    I am not pleading my case to return as moderator. It’s not an option.

  32. Mung,

    Well, let’s not forget the lecture you got from Jock for moving a post that told another poster to fuck-off.

    Though I am sure Jock would have been just as vociferous of a defender if the poster who told another to fuck off wasn’t a fellow atheist Fox and Friend. It just so happened that Jock was protecting one of his own. Surely he would have done the same for his detractors. Surely he would.

    Fuck off Jock.

  33. Mung: I am not pleading my case to return as moderator. It’s not an option.

    Not an option? Says who?

  34. J-Mac: Not an option? Says who?

    I say. But perhaps, if you hold my head under water long enough, I’ll recant.

  35. walto:

    Anyhow, for you, I recommend this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x3021DigxHs

    Totally off the train of thought, but I didn’t even know that opera and aria existed. You’re a man of refined tastes, I see.

    Sorry for the off topic, but that was nice.

    But whosoever feels his pride
    Humbled so deep
    There is no corner he can hide
    Even in sleep!
    Will have no trouble to find out
    How a poor teacher
    Widowed and loney finds delight
    In shouldering care.

    Lovely!

  36. Mung:

    1. I removed the restriction on keiths, allowing him to post without moderator approval…

    4. I completed the action begun in #1 by restoring Author to keiths, allowing him to post an OP without moderator approval.

    Both of which made perfect sense. There is no valid reason for either my comments or my OPs to be held before publication.

    Alan is abusing his moderation privileges in service of a personal grudge, and the Rubber Stamp Twins, Neil and Jock, are abetting him.

  37. Mung: 3. I restored Author to J-Mac.

    Mung: Number 3 seems to have been equally egregious. Sorry J-Mac.

    Don’t worry about it Mung…
    The members of the “holy trinity” who demanded my publishing rights were taken away hardly ever post here anymore or none… They already got what they deserve…
    Someone once said that ‘…the best revenge is to live well…”
    Whether you are guilty or not as much, try to learn one thing from me: I’m too lazy to hold a grudge… Move on asap and try to live well but don’t forget to keep exposing “the wolf in sheep’s clothing”… 😉

  38. Mung: I say. But perhaps, if you hold my head under water long enough, I’ll recant.

    Being an admin is thankless gig…as Sal and others already mentioned…

  39. keiths:
    Mung:

    Both of which made perfect sense.There is no valid reason for either my comments or my OPs to be held before publication.

    Alan is abusing his moderation privileges in service of a personal grudge, and the Rubber Stamp Twins, Neil and Jock, are abetting him.

    What are you worried about?
    They are not going to put you under moderation… but then again, I’ve been wrong before…🤔

  40. phoodoo:

    So Alan’s just a fucking dipshit trying to get revenge against his critics (just like he has repeatedly done to me).

    It’s a chronic problem. It’s also what Alan did to ALurker and Patrick, based on his idiotic belief that ALurker was a sockpuppet of Patrick’s. He suspended their accounts, which the rules don’t permit; he violated their privacy, by combing through TSZ’s IP records; he reached a dipshit conclusion, due to incompetence; a conclusion which, even if it had been true, wouldn’t have constituted a rule violation. (Details here.)

    All of this because ALurker had the temerity to criticize Alan.

  41. keiths:

    There is no valid reason for either my comments or my OPs to be held before publication.

    J-Mac

    What are you worried about?
    They are not going to put you under moderation…

    Um, J-Mac — they already did that. It’s what Mung was trying to reverse.

  42. Alan Fox: No problem for me if Mung wants to discuss in public. Though I still hope matters can be resolved.

    Public it is then.

    Alan Fox: Yes, which why I’m still hoping for direct discussion which could resolve things amicably.

    I’m trying to keep it civil. No name calling, no calling people out, except DNA_Jock.

    walto (to keiths): I think your case is quite good, as long as the three mods had not already agreed on how to handle your participation and mung’s action was a clear violation of that agreement.

    Alan Fox: which indeed was the case.

    I beg to differ about that.

    Here’s what I received in the PM from Alan earlier today (my time) where the reasoning is given:

    We’d already made clear that giving J-Mac author status was not something any us of could agree with. Yet, after we had reiterated that point, you went on to give keiths author status without checking with anyone.

    Note that from the first, the second does not at all follow. So what is needed here (imo) is evidence that all the mods knew that keiths was not to be given Author status and that I knew this and agreed to it as well and acted contrary to that agreement.

    keiths: Both of which made perfect sense. There is no valid reason for either my comments or my OPs to be held before publication.

    I have an Ace up my sleeve.

  43. Mung: We’d already made clear that giving J-Mac author status was not something any us of could agree with.

    I would like to know what those reasons were that admins couldn’t agree with…

  44. Mung,

    But the whole point of having ONE non-atheist moderator, is so that they can make some decisions which, at least on the surface, would be more fair to those who post here who don’t have the atheist brotherhood backing them.

    But if the idea is moderator decisions are a majority vote thing, and the majority is always going to be atheist-biased, so that Alan always gets his way-then what the fuck is the point of a non-atheist moderator? To fool us? To have a Clarence Thomas?

    Oh, let’s take a vote, Oh, sorry Mung, Alan’s side wins…. Surprise, surprise! Jock and neil sided with Alan. Who would have guessed?

    Can we ALL vote on whether Alan still deserves to be a moderator?

    I think the only interesting part of this is how full and truly Alan doesn’t seem to care about what a dickhead he shows himself to be.

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