On Forum Rules and Moderation

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Quelcezot
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Re: On Forum Rules and Moderation

#46 Post by Quelcezot » Tue Jun 23, 2015 5:39 am

daikiraikimi wrote:It's not *only* you, but honestly speaking it's pretty messed up when someone states a very simple preference-- not to work with people who dehumanize them and others-- and then a horde of people post after saying how them not wanting to work with bigots makes them uncomfortable, how it is blacklisting (but no one is being excluded from the site), or a "witch hunt", and how using your resources differently is a denial of public good.

Overall, it was an extremely hostile response to a very simple, straightforward, and completely understandable statement.
You've made some perfectly good points that everyone in this thread could agree with. But you keep misinterpreting people.

Literally no-one in this thread has said that anyone should have to work with bigots. That never happened.

People did not like the idea of trooper keeping a list of people they wouldn't work with for a variety of reasons, most of them because it made them uncomfortable.

If someone I didn't like asked me to work with them, I'd most likely decline.

If however, someone I didn't remember much about proposed to me - I wouldn't bring up my sinister list and search out their name to see if they crossed a line I can't even remember.

Unless you think that everything trooper says is always 100% the ultimate truth for all time, an arrogance I'm sure they would deny themsleves, the idea that a single disagreement - years before any thoughts of collaboration - could have them shaking their head at some little entry is not a nice thought. People want to be judged when the time calls for it.

Actually, Sapphi's response was not rude. They did not say anything disrespectful. It was only an attempt to pull the moral high ground from under your feet. Which frankly I agree, shouldn't be there. Keeping a list is fine, I don't mind. If it makes life easier for you go ahead. Making an announcement about it and claiming that you're doing it for the good of all humankind is frankly bollocks.

I do disagree with Sapphi though, over not discussing issues like these at all. I just think people should strive to have a higher tolerance to other people's ideas. That way discussion can be more, in such topics, than just announcing whether you identify or not.


I actually forgot to address something earlier, it was mentioned a couple of times that people considered PyTom posting in locked threads "power trippy". I don't really mind either way but if a post isn't made I think the threadstarter at least should receive a message so they can learn why it happened. Maybe this already happens, I do not know.
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Re: On Forum Rules and Moderation

#47 Post by Rinima » Tue Jun 23, 2015 6:04 am

Quelcezot wrote:I actually forgot to address something earlier, it was mentioned a couple of times that people considered PyTom posting in locked threads "power trippy". I don't really mind either way but if a post isn't made I think the threadstarter at least should receive a message so they can learn why it happened. Maybe this already happens, I do not know.
As far as I'm aware (I've had 1 thread locked without a message from the mods at the end of the thread), a PM isn't given to say why (as far as I'm aware, it might have changed since it happened to me, considering it was well over a year ago).
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Re: On Forum Rules and Moderation

#48 Post by noeinan » Tue Jun 23, 2015 6:45 am

Quelcezot wrote: You've made some perfectly good points that everyone in this thread could agree with. But you keep misinterpreting people.
Communication is a two way street.
Quelcezot wrote: Literally no-one in this thread has said that anyone should have to work with bigots. That never happened.

People did not like the idea of trooper keeping a list of people they wouldn't work with for a variety of reasons, most of them because it made them uncomfortable.
That's the thing though-- you're trying very hard to separate the list from bigots, but it is a list *of* bigots. Trooper6 did not say "if anyone does anything small that I don't like, I will put them on my bad list forever." Trooper6 said that they did not want to work with people who espoused bigotted views on this forum, and that they kept a list of people who did so as they don't want to work with them.

I honestly do not think that this is some passive-aggressive, revolutionary action. Many, if not most, creators on a forum for creators to form teams, will think about who they do and don't want to work with and why. And making a list, even talking about having a list, is not really some kind of higher offense. It's just being organized, and clear. ("Oh, this artist has an art style I like. Maybe I'll commission them some day! This person likes simulation games, which I'm not a fan of. I probably won't make simulation games, so I probably won't work with them.")

It's not like trooper6 was in a conversation about forming a collaboration with someone specific, and said "oh, sorry, you're on my shit list. Go away." They just referenced the list and a bunch of people freaked out about it.

Quelcezot wrote: Unless you think that everything trooper says is always 100% the ultimate truth for all time, an arrogance I'm sure they would deny themsleves, the idea that a single disagreement - years before any thoughts of collaboration - could have them shaking their head at some little entry is not a nice thought. People want to be judged when the time calls for it.
Again, trooper6 didn't ever say "if you ever disagree with me on anything you get the shit list." They said that they don't want to work with people who express bigoted views and dehumanize others. The idea that you need to completely erase all past behavior to evaluate a person in the moment is, frankly, ridiculous.

Your past behavior will, of course, affect your future relationships with other people. This is not a consequence free world, and there are consequences to your actions. Saying something super racist, or transphobic, is going to make a good number of people not like you, or want to work with you. And it's much harder to rebuild that trust once it is broken.

No one has any obligation to pretend that you sprung into existence the day you made a recruitment thread.
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Re: On Forum Rules and Moderation

#49 Post by Quelcezot » Tue Jun 23, 2015 7:10 am

daikiraikimi wrote:Your past behavior will, of course, affect your future relationships with other people. This is not a consequence free world, and there are consequences to your actions. Saying something super racist, or transphobic, is going to make a good number of people not like you, or want to work with you. And it's much harder to rebuild that trust once it is broken.

No one has any obligation to pretend that you sprung into existence the day you made a recruitment thread.
Sounds good. It's a bit patronizing though since I wasn't saying or implying the opposite. You've already said a lot of similar things, with which I agree.

I haven't tried to distance Trooper's list from being a list of bigots. Trooper says the list is of people they would feel incompatible working with. So I believe them in thinking that is truthfully what it is.

Like Sapphi, my view is that keeping a list is completely fine, if you don't trust yourself to remember the evil people. As I realize we're getting off topic, I'm going to be keeping the rest of this discussion to private messages. I want if possible to accomplish mutual understanding rather than prolong a mutual refusal to compromise. I've already stated my views and if you want clarification on them I'd be happy to answer by PM.
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Re: On Forum Rules and Moderation

#50 Post by Sapphi » Tue Jun 23, 2015 7:24 am

daikiraikimi wrote: It's good that you don't mean to excuse bad people from their actions, but it comes off that way when you never once mention their actions are bad, and then write several posts addressing one member specifically about why *they personally* are responsible. But they are no more responsible for a stranger than you, or I, or Py'Tom. (Well, I guess he's a moderator, so there's a bit more responsibility there.)
The thing is I didn't realize I had to explicitly state ~bigots are bad~; I thought that much was obvious. In general I try to avoid stating the obvious. I want to give people some credit for already knowing the obvious thing. :wink:

I also did not mean to imply one user was any more responsible than anyone else. I made it as a public statement because I wanted everyone to consider it. I don't believe trooper6 is more responsible for a stranger than I am.
Overall, it was an extremely hostile response to a very simple, straightforward, and completely understandable statement.
Given that using shame as a motivator is generally disgusting to me, and given that no hostility was actually intended when I was responding to trooper6, I will gladly give them a public apology if they would like one.
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Re: On Forum Rules and Moderation

#51 Post by Quelcezot » Tue Jun 23, 2015 7:59 am

Rinima wrote:
Quelcezot wrote:I actually forgot to address something earlier, it was mentioned a couple of times that people considered PyTom posting in locked threads "power trippy". I don't really mind either way but if a post isn't made I think the threadstarter at least should receive a message so they can learn why it happened. Maybe this already happens, I do not know.
As far as I'm aware (I've had 1 thread locked without a message from the mods at the end of the thread), a PM isn't given to say why (as far as I'm aware, it might have changed since it happened to me, considering it was well over a year ago).
That's worth knowing. I think there should be at least one or the other. Clarity is definitely important. And when a reply is made to the end of the thread it should of course be dedicated to explaining why it's been closed.

I suppose that'd actually be easier than a pm mostly, and would also explain what happened to other contributors.

Whatever the system is, it should be consistent.
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Re: On Forum Rules and Moderation

#52 Post by ThisIsNoName » Tue Jun 23, 2015 11:05 am

daikiraikimi wrote:"This person likes simulation games, which I'm not a fan of. I probably won't make simulation games, so I probably won't work with them."
I know that this is meant as an extreme example, but it perfectly illustrates what I'm talking about. If you choose who to work with based purely on tangential interests, or political views, you would miss out on opportunities that you might regret if you considered them as a multi-dimensional person.

EDIT: I'm just going to delete the post except for the part that's already been responded to. It was off subject and I shouldn't have posted it in the first place.
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Re: On Forum Rules and Moderation

#53 Post by trooper6 » Tue Jun 23, 2015 12:44 pm

ThisIsNoName wrote: I know that this is meant as an extreme example, but it perfectly illustrates what I'm talking about. If you choose who to work with based purely on tangential interests, or political views, you would miss out on opportunities that you might regret if you considered them as a multi-dimensional person.
You don't get to decide what is and isn't tangential for me.
I was having a conversation once with a colleague about dating criteria. She told me that she would never date an Atheist--because they have no morals and are untrustworthy--and really she would never date a non-Protestant...and actually she would prefer to only date other Methodists. I told her that I wouldn't date anyone who voted for X political party. She thought that was shallow of me and that politics just weren't an important category for choosing who to date...and that there were lots of really great people who voted for X political party that I would be missing out on and that I'd regret it. Politics might not have been that important to her...but they are to me. So, no, it isn't shallow for me, and no I don't regret holding onto that criteria. And it is my right to have that criteria. Personally? The distinctions between Methodist and Baptist are not important to me. But they are to her. So I'd never tell her not to have that criteria. Also, as an atheist, I find it irritating that she thinks I therefore automatically have no morals and am untrustworthy. But you know what? That is where she is coming from, and if that is how she feels, she really shouldn't date any atheists. I knew the moment I told her I was atheist that I went on her list of non-dateable people...but she has the right to have that list. And I'm not so arrogant to think I'm so special that her world will be so much worse because she isn't dating me.

My "list" is a list of people I don't want to work with...so no, I don't regret not working with them. As Edit Piaf sings, "No, I regret nothing."
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Re: On Forum Rules and Moderation

#54 Post by Jate » Tue Jun 23, 2015 1:00 pm

I figured I should throw my two cents in since I posted a couple of times in the non-binary thread where this started.

~ On having a list ~

People are going to have preferences on who they do or don't want to work with. What those preferences are will vary from person to person. They may decide not to work with someone because of bigoted views, their work ethic, a bad previous experience working together, their personality, what kind of games they want to make, the quality or cost of their work, etc, etc. The vast majority of people are not okay with working with anyone they ever meet, for whatever reasons. And I think we can all agree it's reasonable to have the right to turn down a partnership you don't want. The reasons for turning down a partnership may not be ones you like, but what's the alternative? Force people to work with everyone who asks, or change who they are. In either case, leaving people with the right to decide who to work with seems the better choice to me.

The ONLY difference having a list makes is going about it in a more formal and organized way. Without the list, people will have opinions of others and it will affect their willingness to work with them. With the list, people will have opinions of others and it will affect their willingness to work with them.

In a lot of the debate going on I see people with a specific version of a list in mind (and some liberties are being taken there, I think, but I won't dwell on that.) Which leads me to believe the problem with the list comes as much from the criteria as having a list itself. I'd like to reiterate that having the list is not the cause of the criteria. It's the other way around. The preferences came first, and the list followed to organize the consequent thoughts and opinions.

In other words, I don't think lists do any harm. If you take issue with the criteria for it, that seems like an entire different discussion. A discussion centered around how we view people and what we find (un)acceptable and good or bad about them. To change what will make someone want to work with someone else probably won't be accomplished in a forum topic. Nor does it need to be, in my opinion. I don't think a person ought to be told to work with people they're not comfortable with because their reasons aren't good enough or, in the case of the list, are expressed in the wrong way.

~ On forum rules ~

I get policing a forum meant to have a productive/professional tone, and limiting threads that don't meet that image. That's totally fine with me. What I don't like is refusing to offer a place for people to be informal and/or sociable simply because some people aren't interested in doing so. Some people are.

I for one enjoy talking to people, and am interested in doing so on this board because I'd like to get to know people I may one day work with on a personal level and not just a professional one. I would never be so forward as to follow someone onto their blog or twitter in search of their company. I'm just not that bold. To me, following someone off the forum without knowing them first would be like getting someone's number out of the phonebook and calling them up instead of them giving you their number after a nice chat. I realize that not everyone has that issue, and I'm not saying there should be an informal forum for that reason alone, I'm simply explaining why "just go to their twitter" isn't an option for me.

I'm not going to go into detail listing the reasons why I like having a relaxed, unproductive forum. Other people in the thread have done that already. I just want to say that if there were a lounge area/chatterbox/whatever you'd like to call it, people who want to socialize can, and those who don't can just ignore the forum. I think it would be a great addition for those that want it, and it wouldn't be harmful for those that don't as they're not forced to participate. If anything it would be helpful to those who don't want nonsense threads, as they would bud up less in this forum. In one instance both parties are happy, in the other, one is scorned. The only downside I can think of is having another forum that has to be moderated by the staff. To that I respond that I'm sure there's at least one dependable member who's been around a while that would volunteer to moderate that forum.

What I want is pretty much the case with the anime forum, and no one seems to have a problem with it. People who like it use it, and people who don't let it sit there at the bottom and go about their business. The only difference is the forum is specific to a certain interest set instead of being a general chat area.

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Re: On Forum Rules and Moderation

#55 Post by PyTom » Tue Jun 23, 2015 2:41 pm

I think we're going a little off track by obsessing over lists, rather than forum rules and moderation. (I take the blame for starting that.) I don't think that anyone should be forced to work with anyone else, or work on subject matter that disinterests or offends them.

I would like to talk about positive actions we can do to make the forum better.

This is a forum that has a topic, so we're going to have people with all sorts of views on off-topic issues. I think we owe it to forum members to be tolerant - at least to the point of avoiding incivility - of views we disagree with. At the same time, it's really hard for me (and perhaps the other admins, but I'm a self-admitted bad case) to notice intolerance before it becomes incivility. Perhaps it makes sense to add "Intolerance" to the list of reasons one can report a post. While I worry a little that "Intolerance" could be used as a way to shut down an opponent, I suspect it's probably going to be used as more of a guideline - if I start seeing reports for intolerance, and a thread is off-topic, it makes sense to either bring it back on topic or shut the thread down.

When it comes to off-topic posts, I'll note that the topic of General discussion includes "and occasional community-building." I think it might make sense for us to give off-topic posts a chance for a page or so - and if the thread actually allows community-building, longer. I'm not sure this should cover polls or forum games that do not invite meaningful interaction, but if we had more threads like the happy, sad, and photo threads, that wouldn't be a bad thing.

I think we should actively discourage off-topic political and identity threads - which oftentimes are the same thing, based on the reader's perspective. Perhaps due to my own failings, these threads always end with people hurt and forum drama, and that's something that is best avoided.
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Re: On Forum Rules and Moderation

#56 Post by trooper6 » Tue Jun 23, 2015 2:50 pm

After reading Jate's post, I think it might be best to have the General Discussion be General On-Topic Discussion, and Rename the Anime Board renamed the General Off-Topic Discussion and move all the clearly social threads there....all of the favorite books can now join the favorite anime threads.

As for political and identity threads...I think that, in a General Off-Topic Board, they should be allowed as long as they don't devolve into mean-ness. I say this because I've seen political and identity threads that have been fine...and also "fan of bishoujo" is also an identity. I've seen things get a bit heated around 3-D graphics when a person's identity involves being a 3-D graphics person and other folks are too mean in bashing 3-D graphics. So...I don't think identity can actually be avoided...considering that fandom, or being a geek, etc is often part of the identities of people here. But I think making clear that personal attacks are not tolerated might be enough and a bit more aggressive mod'ing on off-topic threads. Also, keeping all of the off-topic threads in one board might concentrate where more moderation might be needed into one place, might be helpful.
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Re: On Forum Rules and Moderation

#57 Post by mugenjohncel » Tue Jun 23, 2015 3:00 pm

There used to be a time when Lemmasoft was a lot simpler... we discuss making OELVN's, we make OELVN's, we release OELVN's and we talk and discuss whatever things in between may it be OELVN related or not... and everyone is happy regardless...

Now... it's just... different... slightly more... oh how should I describe it... a bit hostile... it just isn't as fun as it used to be. Everytime I try and attempt to post it feels like you have to watch your back for... no apparent reason yet you still feel like doing it...

I guess everything changes... maybe this is the consequence of growing a little bit too big...

Just my two pesos...

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Re: On Forum Rules and Moderation

#58 Post by PyTom » Tue Jun 23, 2015 3:55 pm

trooper6 wrote:After reading Jate's post, I think it might be best to have the General Discussion be General On-Topic Discussion, and Rename the Anime Board renamed the General Off-Topic Discussion and move all the clearly social threads there....all of the favorite books can now join the favorite anime threads.
I guess my answer is - I don't want to make this a place for general off-topic discussion. I think that there are plenty of places on the internet that allow unrestricted discussion - I don't think there needs to be another one, and so I don't want to spend my resources providing one, beyond the relatively limited amount that's acceptable in General Discussion.
As for political and identity threads...I think that, in a General Off-Topic Board, they should be allowed as long as they don't devolve into mean-ness.
They always do, sooner or later, at least when the thread involves an immutable identity like gender. They shouldn't, but they do - and then we spend a week debating forum rules, and not working on projects.
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Re: On Forum Rules and Moderation

#59 Post by Kinjo » Tue Jun 23, 2015 4:29 pm

Ultimately this is PyTom's forum so if he wants to keep it centered on projects, I think that's what should be done. He's stated his reasoning and after thinking about it for a while I have to agree with him.

All in all I think this forum is doing a lot of things right compared to others. Just because there are some hiccups every now and then doesn't mean anything should be drastically changed. That's actually pretty normal.

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Re: On Forum Rules and Moderation

#60 Post by Rinima » Tue Jun 23, 2015 4:32 pm

PyTom wrote:and then we spend a week debating forum rules, and not working on projects.
*coughquicknitpickthat'sprobablynotneededcough* It's actually only been 3 days lol (just to note, this not a serious jab, just some fun)
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