Moderation Issues (2)

cropped-adelie-penguin-antarctica_89655_990x7421.jpgAs the replacement Moderation page has developed the old bug so that permalinks no longer navigate to the appropriate comment, so here is yet another page for continuing discussion on moderating issues. The Rules can be found there so anyone with an issue should check that they are familiar with them.

2,308 thoughts on “Moderation Issues (2)

  1. Alan,

    No you shouldn’t and it isn’t.

    It clearly is necessary. Tell us:

    Going forward, do you agree, as a moderator, to refrain from inventing your own rules and to be bound by Lizzie’s rules instead?

  2. Patrick,

    A variant of that I’ve been looking into would leave a link to the Guano’d comment when one is moved. That would retain the context of the thread and make it easier for those who want to see the comment to do so.

    That would work too. I have a slight preference for my version because it doesn’t require the extra mouse clicks. Everything’s there on one page and you just read straight through it, and that’s true both for the people who “subscribe” to the “housekeeping” and for those who don’t.

    But it isn’t a strong preference.

    I haven’t spent a lot of time on it and I’m very worried that it will involve me writing PHP.

    Ugh. I feel your pain.

  3. phoodoo: I don’t think you can name ONE who remains civil, and who posts frequently.

    I think KN does a pretty good job. Likewise walto. I’m sure I could even widen that field. (Joe F. – perhaps not a frequent commenter) We see some occasional snark, but rarely outright insults like is common from numerous others.

    If only those who insisted on being insulting could manage to insult everyone and not just certain people. 🙂

  4. Flint: I interpret this as a consistently disappointed expectation of privilege.

    I feel privileged that my thread was closed to comments. Is that what you mean?

  5. No.

    I’m asking whether you, as a moderator, agree to abide by Lizzie’s rules instead of inventing your own.

  6. Alan Fox: I see the idea that moderation issues thread is to raise issues about moderation is blossoming!

    No thanks to you, Alan. Patrick started asking questions and even managed to give off an aura of sincerity. That sort of thing goes a long way and beats made-up excuses any day of the week.

    And it sure has hell beats enforcing “rules” that don’t exist.

  7. keiths:
    Alan,

    It clearly is necessary.Tell us:

    Going forward, do you agree, as a moderator, to refrain from inventing your own rules and to be bound by Lizzie’s rules instead?

    I suggest that you start your own site. And ask questions of potential moderators at that site.

    You are not good as a mind reader. I am particularly referring to your comments about what Lizzie thinks.

  8. Neil,

    I suggest that you start your own site.

    Why?

    I suggest that if you want to unilaterally concoct and enforce rules, you do so at your own site, not here at Lizzie’s. You seem to have gotten the message, but Alan still hasn’t.

    You are not good as a mind reader. I am particularly referring to your comments about what Lizzie thinks.

    What specific examples do you have in mind? I don’t try to read Lizzie’s mind — I read what she writes.

  9. Alan Fox: Seconding Patrick, there would be no need for moderators, rules, moderation threads etc if members could just manage to exchange views without rancour.

    Where is the rancour in this thread? Was the OP really that bad?

  10. GlenDavidson: Gun control would best be decided by a gunfight. Pro-gun people can bring their guns, and the anti-gun people can bring their pens, keyboards, and sharpest retorts.

    Is it okay if my keyboard is attached to a Warthog? That would make the gunfight a lot more fun.
    For me, that is.

    Seriously though, a discussion of gun control might be interesting iff the pro-gun advocates were willing to discuss the quality of the evidence…when the topic came up (on Noyau) after the Paris attacks, all I saw were some assertions that WJM cherry-picked from a pamphlet.
    Well, he also claimed that the Paris attacks could have been prevented, if only the Parisian police were armed. <ggg>
    The pro-gun side appears impervious to data…

  11. Mung,

    Patrick started asking questions and even managed to give off an aura of sincerity.

    “Sincerity – if you can fake that, you’ve got it made.”
    — George Burns

  12. keiths: Also, I am not asking Flint or anyone else to take my word on these matters. The evidence is available in the relevant threads. Anyone who wishes to can look for him or herself.

    I want to thank you for reminding all of us that those posts were moved out of the Moderation Issues thread.

    So Alan created a new thread. The Whine Cellar.

    Moved posts out of Moderation Issues into that thread.

    Later claimed that admins can only move posts to Guano.

    When faced with evidence to the contrary (his prior actions) he claimed that that was then and this is now and that NOW admins can only move posts to Guano, therefore he wasn’t lying.

    Admins can also take away the ability of an author of an OP to edit that OP.

    Admins can also close threads to comments.

    Admins can also force people to agree to have their OP’s pass though approval censorship if they want to have an OP appear on the site.

    Lots of things admins can do and have done besides move posts to Guano.

    Right Alan?

  13. DNA_Jock,

    Is it okay if my keyboard is attached to a Warthog? That would make the gunfight a lot more fun. For me, that is.

    You mean the plane, not the animal, right?

  14. DNA_Jock: Seriously though, a discussion of gun control might be interesting if the pro-gun advocates were willing to discuss the quality of the evidence…

    Well, then, what’s stopping you? 🙂

  15. keiths: No, it’s about all of us who are affected by moderation, including you, phoodoo.

    Exactly, it’s not just about the theists. People who just don’t care because it didn’t happen to them are going to get the site they deserve, but perhaps that is the site they want.

  16. Neil Rickert: If you are not logged into the site, there is no “Ignore” button. Most people reading the site are not logged in.

    Salvador’s suggestion doesn’t even make sense. He wants to ignore people from the start in his threads without regard to whether or not they have anything substantive to say, and he wants to allow Guano from everyone else. Sheesh.

  17. Mung:

    So Alan created a new thread. The Whine Cellar.

    Correct.

    Moved posts out of Moderation Issues into that thread.

    Correct.

    Later claimed that admins can only move posts to Guano.

    After Lizzie decided that participation in noyau should be voluntary.
    Correct.

    When faced with evidence to the contrary (his prior actions) he claimed that that was then and this is now and that NOW admins can only move posts to Guano, therefore he wasn’t lying.

    Exactly. Before Lizzie returned from her absence there was no specific rule about admins moving comments. Subsequent to her decision I have kept to it apart from moving one of yours.

    Admins can also take away the ability of an author of an OP to edit that OP.

    Lizzie always intended that there should be a general restriction on authors editing comments in their threads. Authors needing to edit their OPs (for instance when using LaTeX which can’t be previewed) can request that ability

    Admins can also close threads to comments.

    Admins can do anything.

    Admins can also force people to agree to have their OP’s pass though approval censorship if they want to have an OP appear on the site.

    Participation here is entirely voluntary. You know why I changed your membership to contributor. Lizzie specifially asked for no more separate threads on moderation as there is this dedicated thread.

    Lots of things admins can do and have done besides move posts to Guano.

    Indeed. I concur that with hindsight, different actions at different times may have had better outcomes. In spite of what some might suggest, I do try to learn from those experiences.

  18. keiths: Lizzie doesn’t want censorship here at TSZ.

    The evidence indicates otherwise. If Lizzie didn’t want censorship she would not close threads to comments. She does close threads to comments. Therefore she must want censorship.

  19. Mung: If Lizzie didn’t want censorship she would not close threads to comments. She does close threads to comments. Therefore she must want censorship.

    Nothing other than porn links or spam gets deleted here. Two members have had posting privileges withdrawn and both are effectively reinstated so we currently have no restrictions on any login or IP address. Some personal information that was considered “outing” has been redacted from some comments. Other than that everything that been posted here (other than some material lost when the previous server crashed and a deliberate deletion of one thread – partially recovered) still exists.

    Where’s the censorship?

  20. Alan,

    I concur that with hindsight, different actions at different times may have had better outcomes.

    That’s even more euphemistic than “mistakes were made”. Take responsibility for your actions and decisions, Alan. They are yours and nobody else’s.

    In spite of what some might suggest, I do try to learn from those experiences.

    I haven’t suggested that you don’t try, because I don’t know that. Whether you’ve tried or not, I’m just pointing out that you haven’t learned the obvious lesson, which is to stop inventing your own moderation rules and to abide by Lizzie’s instead.

    If you had learned that lesson, you wouldn’t keep repeating the mistake.

    It’s quite revealing that you won’t answer “yes” to the following:

    Going forward, do you agree, as a moderator, to refrain from inventing your own rules and to be bound by Lizzie’s rules instead?

    You won’t agree to that? Seriously?

  21. Mung: But you do close threads to comments, and that is ok. LoL. Since when?

    It makes me mad too when you think of all the potential comments which never even got the chance to be written or posted,premature censorship at its worst.

  22. Mung: The evidence indicates otherwise. If Lizzie didn’t want censorship she would not close threads to comments. She does close threads to comments. Therefore she must want censorship.

    Mung, do you have a number? How many threads were closed to comments in 2015? In 2014?

    Closing a thread or two a year because they had devolved into a pissing match, or because the comments no longer pertain to the OP, is just good moderation. If you can provide links to a few in the last year, we can discuss them.

  23. Mung,

    I agree that closing threads is a form of censorship, and I was disappointed that it happened here. However, it is rare at TSZ and rampant at UD.

    I look forward to hearing you complain at UD the next time KF does it.

    To characterize Lizzie as “wanting censorship” is grossly unfair when, apart from a few missteps, she has been consistently against it.

  24. Good point. KF won’t open his “FYI/FTR” threads for even a minute, lest someone leap through the rapidly closing window with a comment.

    His fear of open discussion is actually quite rational. When discussion is open, KF loses.

  25. keiths: To characterize Lizzie as “wanting censorship” is grossly unfair when, apart from a few missteps, she has been consistently against it.

    There’s what Lizzie says and there’s what Lizzie does. Are you asking Lizzie to sign your pledge too, or are you just picking on Alan out of spite?

  26. It would be rather silly to ask Lizzie to commit to this:

    Going forward, do you agree, as a moderator, to refrain from inventing your own rules and to be bound by Lizzie’s rules instead?

    Think, Mung.

    It’s bizarre that Alan won’t agree to it, however.

  27. keiths: It would be rather silly to ask Lizzie to commit to this:

    It’s silly to ask Alan to commit to it. No one but Lizzie knows what Lizzie’s rules are. You certainly don’t know what her rules are. It’s idiotic to ask Alan to commit to your idea of what constitutes your beliefs about what Lizzie’s rules are. After all, Alan might disagree with you about what you think Lizzie’s rules are.

    You may as well ask Alan the following:

    Going forward, do you agree, as a moderator, to refrain from inventing your own rules and to be bound by what you think Lizzie’s rules are instead?

    If I were Alan I’d claim that Lizzie’s rules are what I declare them to be, and then I’d count on Lizzie to back me up, because that’s her expressly stated rule. I’d claim that I’m not making up my own rules, I’m only interpreting Lizzie’s rules.

    Think, keiths.

    I think it’s wonderful you thought Elizabeth was wrong to close comments on open threads for no good reason. I admire your ability to justify her actions by simply appealing to her personal whims without regard to whether she was acting according to anything other than her personal whim. I think you’re to be commended for keeping your mouth shut about it.

    I think you’re a hypocrite for hounding Alan. His actions stem from Elizabeth’s actions [or lack thereof]. The real problem is with Elizabeth’s approach to managing the site. But that’s what you get with an absentee slumlord.

  28. keiths: I agree that closing threads is a form of censorship, and I was disappointed that it happened here. However, it is rare at TSZ and rampant at UD.

    I love this bit of logic. It’s ok if it happens here, as long as it happens here less often than it happens at UD.

    Regardless of why it happens at UD, or how often it happens at UD, why should it be tolerated at all here at TSZ?

  29. Mung: I love this bit of logic. It’s ok if it happens here, as long as it happens here less often than it happens at UD.

    Regardless of why it happens at UD, or how often it happens at UD, why should it be tolerated at all here at TSZ?

    ??? He didn’t say it was OK here, he said it’s less bad here, but shouldn’t happen at all. Hungry is less bad than starved to death, but that doesn’t mean it’s a Good Thing.

    I would phrase it as: Here, it’s a mistake. At UD, it’s SOP. Mistakes happen.

  30. Flint: ??? He didn’t say it was OK here…

    Are you yet another of those brave souls who thought it wrong and silently objected but thought it best to say nothing until now?

  31. Mung: Are you yet another of those brave souls who thought it wrong and silently objected but thought it best to say nothing until now?

    No, I’m one of those infrequent visitors who wasn’t aware it had ever happened.

  32. Personally I don’t think that closing a thread is necessarily a bad thing. If it has fallen off the rails and has nothing to do with the OP, who cares? Or if it has degraded to a pissing match and name calling, who cares? Nobody’s comments have been deleted or altered.

    I only find it a problem when it is used by the OP author who is losing an argument and closes comments to prevent further embarrassment (yes Mr. Mullings, I am referring to you). But even then, it does little more than highlight the childishness and insecurity of the author.

  33. Mung:

    I love this bit of logic. It’s ok if it happens here, as long as it happens here less often than it happens at UD.

    Regardless of why it happens at UD, or how often it happens at UD, why should it be tolerated at all here at TSZ?

    Flint:

    ??? He didn’t say it was OK here, he said it’s less bad here, but shouldn’t happen at all. Hungry is less bad than starved to death, but that doesn’t mean it’s a Good Thing.

    Mung’s logic needs a tuneup.

  34. Acartia,

    Personally I don’t think that closing a thread is necessarily a bad thing. If it has fallen off the rails and has nothing to do with the OP, who cares? Or if it has degraded to a pissing match and name calling, who cares? Nobody’s comments have been deleted or altered.

    It’s a form of censorship, albeit a milder one than the outright deletion of comments. When you close comments, you are preventing people who want to respond to something in a thread from doing so. That they can still comment elsewhere isn’t sufficient compensation.

    Suppose we created an ‘Acartia’ thread and limited you to posting there. You could respond to anyone — any OP, any comment — just not on the original thread. You’d have to do it in the Acartia thread. How would you feel about that?

    To be clear, I’m not claiming that the two scenarios are equivalent (or equivalently bad) but I am pointing out that they both involve censorship.

  35. keiths: Meanwhile, Neil thinks it would be bizarre for a moderator to agree to follow Lizzie’s rules and refrain from inventing his own.

    That is not what I said.

    Rather, it would be bizarre for a moderator to make an agreement with keiths (or anybody else other than Lizzie) about moderation.

  36. Neil,

    Rather, it would be bizarre for a moderator to make an agreement with keiths (or anybody else other than Lizzie) about moderation.

    We’re not talking about some special moderation agreement between Alan and me. This is about Alan publicly committing to doing his job as moderator by honoring Lizzie’s rules instead of inventing his own:

    Going forward, do you agree, as a moderator, to refrain from inventing your own rules and to be bound by Lizzie’s rules instead?

    Not only won’t he agree — he’s actually arguing that he never committed to abiding by Lizzie’s rules in the first place:

    keiths:

    When you volunteered for moderator duty, you agreed to moderate within the boundaries set by Lizzie’s rules. You are acting as a proxy for her. This is her website, not yours. Try to keep your own unhelpful wishes and desires out of your moderation decisions and things will go much more smoothly.

    Stick to Lizzie’s rules instead of inventing your own.

    Alan:

    I did not volunteer to be an admin for TSZ. Lizzie asked me to do it. I gave no specific undertakings because Lizzie asked for none.

    Behold your moderator, folks. When asked why he isn’t doing his job, his response is that he never actually agreed to do it in the first place. He just accepted the position.

Comments are closed.