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Author Topic: The Senate Floor: Debate the Ban Process Here  (Read 43042 times)

ISUCKATTHIS

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Re: The Senate Floor: Debate the Ban Process Here
« Reply #70 on: June 14, 2009, 10:59:22 PM »
Okay, I'll just assume you can let this go and stop harassing me.  In the spirit of relevant discussion, I will ignore the personal attacks in your previous post and address at least one part which I found to be of substance and actually on-topic.  Hopefully, you'll be able to follow my lead and stop with the personal attacks, insults and harassment.  Thanks, in advance.

"That said, whether one user uses or abuses the function isn't going to make the difference."

I disagree with you here.  Sands indicated that one of the criteria he weighs when deciding whether or not to ban a poster, I believe, is when there are complaints against that poster.  Then, complaints get a poster banned and illegitimate complaints can have pretty severe consequences, at least in my view.

Sands did not indicate that there is any verification or vetting of those complaints.  If there isn't, I think there should be.  Otherwise, abuse of the system can lead to stifling discussion.  Posters can (and from what we've seen, do) complain about posters merely because they happen to disagree with those posters.  In my opinion, that is not appropriate.  Either the complaints should be vetted by the moderators, posters should not complain about others merely because they disagree with what they have to say... or both.

In any event, it seems to me that one poster abusing the system can certainly make a difference in that context.  Please explain to me why (or if) you disagree with me.  I'm interested to hear your perspective.

UnbiasedObserver

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Re: The Senate Floor: Debate the Ban Process Here
« Reply #71 on: June 14, 2009, 11:07:52 PM »
I am sorry for my part in this.  FWIW, this is easier said than done, however, when you feel as if you're under siege.

There's no need to apologize. It's just friendly reminder that it's a waste of your time and his time for both of you to go round and round about this! 

ISUCKATTHIS

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Re: The Senate Floor: Debate the Ban Process Here
« Reply #72 on: June 14, 2009, 11:19:04 PM »
"There was plenty of other stuff involved before he got banned."

If that's true, then what was the other stuff?  I asked Sands to post it (above) and he declined.  If you have knowledge of the "other stuff" please post it so we can all understand what leads to banning here.

Thanks, in advance.

Incidentally, Sands post indicates that 1) complaints alone against this poster provided the basis for his banning 2) the last straw was this poster's snarky comment to Sands.

ISUCKATTHIS

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Re: The Senate Floor: Debate the Ban Process Here
« Reply #73 on: June 14, 2009, 11:24:18 PM »
This is the post I'm talking about with the relevant portions highlighted...

"What, exactly, was PILFOLO's viewpoint?"

He called Miss P on her saying that I had "no standing" to disagree with her.  He pointed out that she was really saying that I'm not sufficiently in the good graces of people like you and other followers to have the option to disagree with her.  PILOFOLO also pointed out that P demonstrated that she didn't even understand the legal vocabulary she was using in one of her botched arguments.   

But the real question is:  what was "the behavior that landed them in the ban zone in the first place?"  So far, all you've said was that he 1) had the audacity to disagree with Miss P and 2) was not popular with other posters.  That's really it?

Earlier, I invited you to post PILOFOLO's offensive material so we could all understnd what gets you banned here.  Why didn't you take me up on that?

A few points of clarification:

1. I have never said or implied that any poster was banned for disagreeing with any other poster nor has any poster, to my knowledge, ever been banned in the history of this website for such a weak reason.

2. With regard to this particular poster, you stated that "He called Miss P on her saying that I had "no standing" to disagree with her." Clearly, I must have missed this conversation b/c I don't recall seeing any of that. (don't doubt it may have happened, but my attn was not drawn to it)   

3. That's a fair request to ask what this poster in question did to avoid bans in the future.  I don't have the time to go back and dig through my trash file to find the complaint links but suffice it to say, as a general rule, (i) spam, (ii) personal harassment and (iii) blatantly "shock the conscience" posts (ie. Porn, racial junk, etc.) are 3 sure fire ways to get banned.  As I recall, this guy fell into category II.

4. After receiving a few complaints re this poster and a few others involved in the same argument, I remember putting out a general warning to everybody.  Something along the lines of "play nice" or words to that effect.  I didn't take this poster's response personally as he/she doesn't know me and I certainly don't know them.  I took this poster's response to indicate that they were not only going to completely disregard my warning, but that they had no respect for any future warnings as well.  Once I see that a poster has no respect for the mods' requests to keep the peace, there's really no need to beat around the bush anymore after that.  I'd just as soon ban the poster now as opposed to 20 complaints from now.



So, here's the sequence:

1) complaints

2) general warning "to everybody" (i.e., no specific warning to PILOFOLO and no indication that any of the complaints were vetted)

3) snarky comment

4) banning

Feel free to fill in gaps and/or to correct mistaken assumptions.

Miss P

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Re: The Senate Floor: Debate the Ban Process Here
« Reply #74 on: June 14, 2009, 11:30:37 PM »
"That said, whether one user uses or abuses the function isn't going to make the difference.  Even if I repeatedly complained about posts just because their authors were Yankees fans, for instance, talking about it at any length would detract from the real purpose of this thread, which is to discuss how the moderators should respond if something like that happens."

I disagree with you here.  Sands indicated that one of the criteria he weighs when deciding whether or not to ban a poster, I believe, is when there are complaints against that poster.  Then, complaints get a poster banned and Sands did not indicate that there is any verification or vetting of those complaints.  In that case, abuse of the system does matter and can lead to stifling discussion.  Posters can (and from what we've seen, do) complain about posters merely because they happen to disagree with those posters.  In my opinion, that is not appropriate.  Either the complaints should be vetted by the moderators, posters should not complain about others merely because they disagree with what they have to say... or both.

In any event, it seems to me that one poster abusing the system can certainly make a difference in that context.  Please explain to me why (or if) you disagree with me.  I'm interested to hear your perspective.

You're right -- I was possibly too flip about this in my last post.  Repeated abuse of the report-to-moderator function could skew the board's moderation, and I agree with you that moderators should exercise independent judgment about whether the complaints they receive are valid.  I also agree, of course, that users should not abuse the report-to-moderator function.  To that end, it would likely be helpful for all of us, both as posters and as readers, to have clear guidelines about what kinds of posts are acceptable or subject to moderation, and I think this thread has made some progress in that regard.  

I disagree, however, that abuse in reporting is a big concern, for two reasons.  First, as IrrX pointed out, when you report a post to the moderators, there is an entry form for a description of your complaint.  I imagine that moderators already can and do review these descriptions to vet out inappropriate complaints, and that they take complaints more seriously when these descriptions make sense.  (The post you quoted from Sands -- saying that he banned PILOFOLO because of complaints -- does not indicate that those complaints were baseless or that he did not review them.) Second, there's no indication, from Sands' posts or otherwise, that users do abuse the reporting process, and we certainly haven't seen any sign that they do so merely because they disagree with the posts they're reporting.  

All that said, I argued in my first post in this thread that one reason the board's moderation might be inconsistent is that the moderators depend on users, who all have different sensibilities, to alert them to potential violations of the board's informal protocol.  To the extent that even uniformly good-faith, conscientious use of the report-to-moderator function could lead to inconsistent moderation, there are basically three steps we can take: (1) adopting clearer posting guidelines; (2) making sure that the mods carefully review the complaints they receive; and (3) appointing more mods so that they might have time to read and moderate the active parts of the board regularly, independent of the complaints they receive.
That's cool how you referenced a case.

Quote from: archival
I'm so far from the end of my tether right now that I reckon I could knit myself some socks with the slack.

ISUCKATTHIS

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Re: The Senate Floor: Debate the Ban Process Here
« Reply #75 on: June 14, 2009, 11:35:49 PM »
"we certainly haven't seen any sign that they do so merely because they disagree with the posts they're reporting"

Again, I disagree.  We have clearly seen that some posters use the complaint feature to silence those with whom they disagree.  Further Sands, to the present, has not indicated that those complaints were ever reviewed and vetted.  If they were, of course, that'd be acceptable.  If they were, however, then why is it so difficult to get any information about the behavior that lead to the banning of this particular poster?  All we know, and all the moderator has said, is that there were "complaints."  There has been no indication that there was anything more. 

I agree with most of the remaining portions of your post, even if I understand their purpose as to further ingratiate yourself with Sands.


ISUCKATTHIS

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Re: The Senate Floor: Debate the Ban Process Here
« Reply #76 on: June 14, 2009, 11:39:08 PM »
"There was plenty of other stuff involved before he got banned."

If that's true, then what was the other stuff?  I asked Sands to post it (above) and he declined.  If you have knowledge of the "other stuff" please post it so we can all understand what leads to banning here.

Thanks, in advance.

Incidentally, Sands post indicates that 1) complaints alone against this poster provided the basis for his banning 2) the last straw was this poster's snarky comment to Sands.

I got that there were other factors from Sands' posts on the matter. For anything specific, you'll have to get it from him. It certainly isn't my responsibility to provide it, because I'm not a mod. Did he provide any reason for not discussing it with you?

Where did you get that, out of curiosity?  The post is right up there. I don't see it.

Not really.  He essentially said he couldn't be bothered.  You can read it for yourself... please do and do not rely on my paraphrasing.  I say this so that we'll remain fair to Sands.

Miss P

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Re: The Senate Floor: Debate the Ban Process Here
« Reply #77 on: June 14, 2009, 11:50:09 PM »
"we certainly haven't seen any sign that they do so merely because they disagree with the posts they're reporting"

Again, I disagree.  We have clearly seen that some posters use the complaint feature to silence those with whom they disagree.  Further Sands, to the present, has not indicated that those complaints were ever reviewed and vetted.  If they were, of course, that'd be acceptable.  If they were, however, then why is it so difficult to get any information about the behavior that lead to the banning of this particular poster?  All we know, and all the moderator has said, is that there were "complaints."  There has been no indication that there was anything more. 

I agree with most of the remaining portions of your post, even if I understand their purpose as to further ingratiate yourself with Sands.

We have not "clearly seen" anything of the sort.  There are two complaints whose content we can surmise from the posts following this incident.  First, there is PILOFOLO's complaint about comotellamas.  I assume he complained because comotellamas called him a feminine hygiene product, which is perhaps hypersensitive but not a "disagreement."  Second, there is my complaint about PILOFOLO, the content of which I have shared with you.  I said that Sands should have issued a warning to PILOFOLO if he was going to issue a warning to any poster in the "Is The LAW SCHOOL DISCUSSION Board Cliquish?" thread because PILOFOLO had called me a Nazi earlier in that thread.  This also was not a "disagreement." 

Also, it's neither here nor there, but, as to your last sentence, I would guess that complaining to a moderator about his moderation, publicizing that complaint, and then further criticizing that moderator's actions in public would be a poor way to ingratiate oneself with him. But what do I know.
That's cool how you referenced a case.

Quote from: archival
I'm so far from the end of my tether right now that I reckon I could knit myself some socks with the slack.

ISUCKATTHIS

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Re: The Senate Floor: Debate the Ban Process Here
« Reply #78 on: June 14, 2009, 11:54:50 PM »
I'd say you know quite a bit, given how things have played out here.  But, please, let's do away with the personal attacks.  I know it's a reflex, but try to get it under control.

Anyway, we do certainly know that posters have abused the complaint function.  PILOFOLO's case is one example, I'm sure there are others.

From what I read, I think Sands appreciates spirited debate and does not respond to disagreement the way certain posters do.  I could be wrong, but that's my impression. 

Miss P

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Re: The Senate Floor: Debate the Ban Process Here
« Reply #79 on: June 14, 2009, 11:56:15 PM »
I'd say you know quite a bit.  But, please, let's do away with the personal attacks.  I know it's a reflex, but try to get it under control.

What are you talking about?
That's cool how you referenced a case.

Quote from: archival
I'm so far from the end of my tether right now that I reckon I could knit myself some socks with the slack.