Should mods close threads when things aren't going their way? - Page 2 - VeggieBoards
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#31 Old 08-05-2006, 12:56 PM
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#32 Old 08-06-2006, 01:33 PM
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I understand both points of view. I figure that's a perk of their power. They get to do what they want. If I don't like how things are run, I'm free to leave; and I have. When I decided to come back, I also decided to take what I want, and leave what I don't.



ETA: I don't think they owe us anything. Reasons are nice, but not required. That's part of being a peon and not a big dog.
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#33 Old 08-06-2006, 01:35 PM
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Originally Posted by raw jess View Post

I understand both points of view. I figure that's a perk of their power. They get to do what they want.



No, they don't. There are rules they are supposed to follow.



It's shame several are letting their personal feelings overwhelm their responsibilities.
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#34 Old 08-06-2006, 01:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Tame View Post




And even though you thought the topic was important and should continue, you and a couple of others shut my thread down even though it was only going to carry forward the dialogue about the issue as a whole and leave behind the specifics of your incident.



Honestly, do you expect anyone to swallow this?



It would be nice if you, and whomever else followed along with this, would apologize for:

1.)Abusing your powers.

2.)Not having the decency to directly address the concerns raised in this thread.



In the future, I would suggest the mods involved get away from the current knee-jerk reaction of closing threads without thinking the situation through.





I also find it annoying, as inie mentioned, when threads are closed and people cannot start to discuss the OP. I would often stumble across a thread that I was interested in participating in, but it was closed for some odd reason. They were usually threads that had been started before and I only noticed them after discussions got heated, so I missed my chance to participate in them. It just seems like some threads are closed for no apparent reason that can be found in the "rules."
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#35 Old 08-06-2006, 01:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Tame View Post

No, they don't. There are rules they are supposed to follow.



It's shame several are letting their personal feelings overwhelm their responsibilities.





I agree. But didn't your mama ever tell you "I brought you into this world, I can take you out?" I guess in this situation, it's "just" a forum on the internet, and it's not really a big deal if those who make the rules get to break them. Don't get me wrong..I agree it sucks, it's a double standard, and hypocritical, and all that. I just don't think it's something to stress over.
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#36 Old 08-06-2006, 01:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Tame View Post

No, they don't. There are rules they are supposed to follow.



It's shame several are letting their personal feelings overwhelm their responsibilities.



It's apparent the rules aren't the same for everyone. that's good or bad, depending on who you are.
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#37 Old 08-06-2006, 01:59 PM
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I agree. But didn't your mama ever tell you "I brought you into this world, I can take you out?" I guess in this situation, it's "just" a forum on the internet, and it's not really a big deal if those who make the rules get to break them. Don't get me wrong..I agree it sucks, it's a double standard, and hypocritical, and all that. I just don't think it's something to stress over.





As a former moderator and one of handful of VBers left from the early days of this board, I have a problem with certain mods getting petty for no apparent reason.

You are free to move on, and I am free to complain and try to get them to follow their guidelines.



We have some good mods, and I am hoping some of them have the time soon to become more involved and eliminate some of these problems.
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#38 Old 08-06-2006, 06:59 PM
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Just playing devil's advocate here, I'm looking through our posting guidelines to see if there's anything that might appear to explain or possibly even legitimize the actions in question. I'm noticing two possible provisions:



"Do not insult others or discourage them from posting."

"Do not behave like a spoiled drama queen."



IIRC, the old TOS had a provision that prohibited something fairly amorphous called "disruptive posting," and these two new provisions together appear to be a slightly different way of saying roughly the same equally amorphous thing. Either way, these appear to my lawyerly mind to be almost completely subjective and to give mods an incredibly broad power to delete nearly any post or close nearly any thread.



I could see the argument being made that if person A closes their own thread (which I think we all agree anyone can do at any time, for any reason, including personal feelings being hurt), and person B (possibly the very person who was making person A feel hurt and uncomfortable in the original thread, although I didn't read it and don't know what was said ) starts a new thread on the exact same subject, expressly starts it for the purpose of continuing the same conversation, and even asks a mod to copy posts from the old thread, it could be considered a deliberate attempt to trump the power that every member has to have their threads closed at their own discretion if something about that thread is making them uncomfortable. I think that would fall pretty easily under the old TOS rule prohibiting "disruptive posting." Not so clear whether it could be wiggled under any of the current guidelines-- discouraging someone from posting seems the most likely bet. Possibly even "insulting others" if we construe it liberally and interpret the attempt to start a new thread as an attempt by person B to continue making person A feel hurt and uncomfortable. This is all completely hypothetical of course, and does not constitute legal advice!
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#39 Old 08-06-2006, 08:24 PM
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I have no idea where that second one came from, that's not something I'd say.

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#40 Old 08-06-2006, 08:25 PM
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I thought it was kind of oddly phrased for a forum guideline.
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#41 Old 08-06-2006, 08:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Tesseract View Post


IIRC, the old TOS had a provision that prohibited something fairly amorphous called "disruptive posting," and these two new provisions together appear to be a slightly different way of saying roughly the same equally amorphous thing. Either way, these appear to my lawyerly mind to be almost completely subjective and to give mods an incredibly broad power to delete nearly any post or close nearly any thread.



When I was a mod, we had some basic rules we followed, and didn't act willy nilly as some are now.

In addition, when someone was personally involved in a matter, they usually asked others to step in and, get this!, moderate.



Quote:

I could see the argument being made that if person A closes their own thread (which I think we all agree anyone can do at any time, for any reason, including personal feelings being hurt), and person B (possibly the very person who was making person A feel hurt and uncomfortable in the original thread, although I didn't read it and don't know what was said ) starts a new thread on the exact same subject, expressly starts it for the purpose of continuing the same conversation, and even asks a mod to copy posts from the old thread, it could be considered a deliberate attempt to trump the power that every member has to have their threads closed at their own discretion if something about that thread is making them uncomfortable. I think that would fall pretty easily under the old TOS rule prohibiting "disruptive posting." Not so clear whether it could be wiggled under any of the current guidelines-- discouraging someone from posting seems the most likely bet. Possibly even "insulting others" if we construe it liberally and interpret the attempt to start a new thread as an attempt by person B to continue making person A feel hurt and uncomfortable. This is all completely hypothetical of course, and does not constitute legal advice!



Wow, you put a lot of thought into something that doesn't apply.

1.) Someone choosing to close their own thread, particualrly with no reason, has never been a reason to close that topic to additional discussion. out your lawyerly mind to work and think "precedent."



2.) The thread I started was not on the exact same subject. Skylark's thread was about her personal experience. The thread I started was an extension of the path IAJ were starting down, which was about how it is determined what is offensive to different groups.

By requesting that the two posts be copied forward I was actually doing what is encouraged - continuing off-topic discussions in different threads.



3.) As every poster is responsible for what topics they choose to view, the existence of a thread on a topic they don't like can in no way be construed as an attempt to "discourage them from posting." No matter how much you torture the logic, it simply won't confess to that one.



4.) Disruptive posting? Please. Had I mentioned Skylark or even tried to continue a discussion regarding her personal situation, you could make a bad argument for that point, if you ignored the fact she made no mention of why she was closing the thread.

Considering I did not, and in fact the conversation I was continuing was different than hers and mentioned her in know way, then again you are incorrect and no part of the TOS was violated.



5.) Insulting? The discussion of what causes offense to minority groups and why is something that is "insulting" to Skylark, so it should not be allowed? So threads that don't mention a member in any way are an attack? Is that an interpretation of the TOS you would consider reasonable?



Let's also review why the original thread was allegedly closed - because it was felt by some to be "too heated." Yet many reasonable members reviewing the thread could not see any reason for that statement. Even if that were the case, why would what appears to be the start of a polite discussion on a somewhat related topic be closed? The person who felt the original thread was "heated" could close her thread, and then simply walk away, considering her personal situation was not any part of the new thread.



I also want to add that in my replies to Skylark in her thread, I made it abundantly clear that 1.) if she did offend anyone, it would have been by accident because by her nature she tends not to intentionally attack others, and 2.) that I believe the other person did overreact. She asked a question directly to me related to those issues, and I don't believe my answer could have been any clearer.

She posted a thread in the Heap related to a controversial issue, so I have no idea why she should have been surprised that some viewed the matter differently than her. However, she was never, ever attacked.



What this comes down to is that a couple of moderators over stepped their bounds to protect one of their group, and unfairly used their powers to stifle discussion. When given the opportunity to address the matter or answer questions, they ignored the situation, which simply made it worse.



In the past, I had been critical of certain mods, but in a recent thread I noted I thought some of the same ones I had been critical of were making a better effort to act without bias. It is becoming evident now that I was wrong (happens twice a year - take note!), and that nothing had changed. When they felt threatened, for whatever reason, the clique reacted as they had in the past.
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#42 Old 08-06-2006, 08:30 PM
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[strike]You must have been having an out of body experience when you put that in the New Posting Guidelines, because it's the last item on the list. [/strike]



Nevermind, I see that post was edited.
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#43 Old 08-06-2006, 09:25 PM
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Girl so true ok. I have run across lots of threads that I'll start to read, and I'll be like, wow, this is interesting. And I'll go down to the bottom to do a post, and I'll see CLOSED, haha. Then I go, dang itttttttttttttttt.



Why man, why?



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Originally Posted by veggiejanie View Post





I also find it annoying, as inie mentioned, when threads are closed and people cannot start to discuss the OP. I would often stumble across a thread that I was interested in participating in, but it was closed for some odd reason. They were usually threads that had been started before and I only noticed them after discussions got heated, so I missed my chance to participate in them. It just seems like some threads are closed for no apparent reason that can be found in the "rules."

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#44 Old 08-06-2006, 10:53 PM
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Wow, you put a lot of thought into something that doesn't apply.

1.) Someone choosing to close their own thread, particualrly with no reason, has never been a reason to close that topic to additional discussion. out your lawyerly mind to work and think "precedent."

I dunno, when you're dealing with a codification that isn't expressly limited in scope, it pretty much always applies, and external sources are only relevant to the extent they interpret or supplement the statutory language. The guidelines (well, them and Michael's whim) are our codified source of authority. They are new rules which are expressly intended to replace old rules, and they don't say anywhere "unless otherwise provided by prior forum practice," so it always applies and whatever was done in the past on the board can't trump it. But since our code is silent as to the propriety of immediately starting new threads on subjects that have just been closed, if you'd like to point me to an archived thread where this precise issue was addressed before, I'll be happy to take it into consideration in my reasoning. But I can say that if I were a mod, in the spirit of Michael's admonition to use common sense, I would never allow a new thread on the same subject to be started immediately after the closure of old thread for cause, but that's just common sense to me. "Common sense" is another one of those horribly subjective terms.

Quote:
2.) The thread I started was not on the exact same subject. Skylark's thread was about her personal experience. The thread I started was an extension of the path IAJ were starting down, which was about how it is determined what is offensive to different groups. By requesting that the two posts be copied forward I was actually doing what is encouraged - continuing off-topic discussions in different threads.

I dunno, if I saw a new thread titled "X continued" that was started right after a thread that appears to be on subject X was closed, I would think that's pretty suggestive that the new thread was intended as a continutation of the same subject.

Quote:
3.) As every poster is responsible for what topics they choose to view, the existence of a thread on a topic they don't like can in no way be construed as an attempt to "discourage them from posting." No matter how much you torture the logic, it simply won't confess to that one.

I dunno, I think it could be construed fairly easily, although it's not entirely clear to me what it means to discourage someone from posting. Does one have to literally threaten, "If you post, I'll do [insert bad action here]?" Or would merely causing someone to feel harrassed and/or intimidated be sufficient? I think the first is an awfully stilted and narrow interpretation, and the second is probably a more natural one, but that's just me. Do you think it's too liberal? And if so, what do you think would be required to "discourage someone from posting?" Anyway, using my interpretation for the sake of discussion, if, IF mind you, person B was doing something in the original thread that made person A feel harrassed and/or intimidated enough that person A didn't want to post anymore, that would arguably be a violation of the guidelines. So when person A closes the thread, and person B immediately starts a new thread on the same subject (I'm just inferring from the 'continued' title here), it seems to me the conditions are ripe for concluding that someone wants to continue whatever was going on before. I don't think it's beyond reach to reason that harrassment which violates the guidelines is still a violation of the guidelines if it continues to go on after the original victim has attempted to stop it by closing the thread. It merely means that closing the thread was unsuccessful at stoppping it.

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4.) Disruptive posting? Please. Had I mentioned Skylark or even tried to continue a discussion regarding her personal situation, you could make a bad argument for that point, if you ignored the fact she made no mention of why she was closing the thread. Considering I did not, and in fact the conversation I was continuing was different than hers and mentioned her in know way, then again you are incorrect and no part of the TOS was violated.

Calm down, I'm not accusing you of actually violating the guidelines in any way, although I can't speak for what other people might be accusing you of. Let me remind you that I have no idea what was said or not said in the original thread, since I could see it was trouble waiting to happen from the start and stopped reading after the first post. The point I'm making isn't about what you or any other specific VB member may have said in that thread, but about how certain mod actions could potentially fit into the scheme of rules we have to work with. I think I referred to it as "playing devil's advocate." But we do seem to agree that "disruptive posting" doesn't mean much. The danger of it is that because it doesn't mean much, it could mean almost anything. Anyway, if I were you, I wouldn't worry too much about defending yourself against accusations of disruptive posting, since it doesn't seem to be an applicable rule anymore.

Quote:
5.) Insulting? The discussion of what causes offense to minority groups and why is something that is "insulting" to Skylark, so it should not be allowed? So threads that don't mention a member in any way are an attack? Is that an interpretation of the TOS you would consider reasonable?

Again, let me remind you that I have no idea what was or wasn't said, and I'm not attempting to claim that any specific thing was an insult. I'm saying if, IF there was an insult in the original thread, that would be a violation of the guideines, and I think immediately starting a new thread styled as a continuation of the old thread could be pretty easily construed as an attempt to continue a pattern of insulting posts.

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Let's also review why the original thread was allegedly closed - because it was felt by some to be "too heated." Yet many reasonable members reviewing the thread could not see any reason for that statement. Even if that were the case, why would what appears to be the start of a polite discussion on a somewhat related topic be closed? The person who felt the original thread was "heated" could close her thread, and then simply walk away, considering her personal situation was not any part of the new thread.

There seems to be disagreement about whether the subject was too heated, and possibly there's also disagreement as to whether "too heated" is a valid reason for closing a thread, but if it was in fact "too heated," that seems likely to go beyond one particular member's personal situation. As to why the new thread would be closed, I dunno, maybe it's because the new thread-- and I do harp on here-- was expressly styled as a continuation of the old thread, which was allegedly too heated.

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I also want to add that in my replies to Skylark in her thread, I made it abundantly clear that 1.) if she did offend anyone, it would have been by accident because by her nature she tends not to intentionally attack others, and 2.) that I believe the other person did overreact. She asked a question directly to me related to those issues, and I don't believe my answer could have been any clearer.

She posted a thread in the Heap related to a controversial issue, so I have no idea why she should have been surprised that some viewed the matter differently than her. However, she was never, ever attacked.

Duly noted.

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What this comes down to is that a couple of moderators over stepped their bounds to protect one of their group, and unfairly used their powers to stifle discussion. When given the opportunity to address the matter or answer questions, they ignored the situation, which simply made it worse.



In the past, I had been critical of certain mods, but in a recent thread I noted I thought some of the same ones I had been critical of were making a better effort to act without bias. It is becoming evident now that I was wrong (happens twice a year - take note!), and that nothing had changed. When they felt threatened, for whatever reason, the clique reacted as they had in the past.

I'm not so sure I agree, not necessarily. Although I admit it doesn't look great, there appears to be a probably conflict of interest, and your answer appears right now to be the most likely answer, I can still allow for the possibility that it was done out of principle, because closing the new thread is exactly what I would have done as a mod, because as I mentioned above, it's common sense to me that you don't permit a new thread to be immediately started on the same subject when the previous one has gone south.
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#45 Old 08-06-2006, 11:07 PM
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But I can say that if I were a mod, in the spirit of Michael's admonition to use common sense, I would never allow a new thread on the same subject to be started immediately after the closure of old thread for cause, but that's just common sense to me. "Common sense" is another one of those horribly subjective terms.



"I decided to close this thread."



That's cause? Ridiculous, absurd, and inexcusable.



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I dunno, if I saw a new thread titled "X continued" that was started right after a thread that appears to be on subject X was closed, I would think that's pretty suggestive that the new thread was intended as a continutation of the same subject.



Obviously you haven't read the threads.

The "continued" referred to the off-subject conversation started in the thread that was closed (without cause.)



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I dunno, I think it could be construed fairly easily, although it's not entirely clear to me what it means to discourage someone from posting. Does one have to literally threaten, "If you post, I'll do [insert bad action here]?" Or would merely causing someone to feel harrassed and/or intimidated be sufficient? I think the first is an awfully stilted and narrow interpretation, and the second is probably a more natural one, but that's just me. Do you think it's too liberal? And if so, what do you think would be required to "discourage someone from posting?"



In the past, direct comments (ex. "you shouldn't post in this topic because you have no idea what you are talking about") have been what that rules was directed at.



Quote:
Anyway, using my interpretation for the sake of discussion, if, IF mind you, person B was doing something in the original thread that made person A feel harrassed and/or intimidated enough that person A didn't want to post anymore, that would arguably be a violation of the guidelines. So when person A closes the thread, and person B immediately starts a new thread on the same subject (I'm just inferring from the 'continued' title here), it seems to me the conditions are ripe for concluding that someone wants to continue whatever was going on before. I don't think it's beyond reach to reason that harrassment which violates the guidelines is still a violation of the guidelines if it continues to go on after the original victim has attempted to stop it by closing the thread. It merely means that closing the thread was unsuccessful at stoppping it.



Completely ridiculous. First, no harassment, threats, or any such behavior were in the original thread. There were no TOS violations either.

And it is absurd to assert that by continuing a discussion that implies some tyype of harassment is intended, and I do take offense at the mere suggestion of that as a possibility.

I also don't think pre-emptive thread closing on the possibility something may happen is within even a broad view of the TOS, and it does not follow board precedent (which cannot be ignored.)

Quote:

Calm down, I'm not accusing you of actually violating the guidelines in any way, although I can't speak for what other people might be accusing you of. Let me remind you that I have no idea what was said or not said in the original thread, since I could see it was trouble waiting to happen from the start and stopped reading after the first post. The point I'm making isn't about what you or any other specific VB member may have said in that thread, but about how certain mod actions could potentially fit into the scheme of rules we have to work with. I think I referred to it as "playing devil's advocate." But we do seem to agree that "disruptive posting" doesn't mean much. The danger of it is that because it doesn't mean much, it could mean almost anything. Anyway, if I were you, I wouldn't worry too much about defending yourself against accusations of disruptive posting, since it doesn't seem to be an applicable rule anymore.



I'm not the least bit upset at you.



Quote:

Again, let me remind you that I have no idea what was or wasn't said, and I'm not attempting to claim that any specific thing was an insult. I'm saying if, IF there was an insult in the original thread, that would be a violation of the guideines, and I think immediately starting a new thread styled as a continuation of the old thread could be pretty easily construed as an attempt to continue a pattern of insulting posts.



This isn't about theoretical situations. I am addressing what happened in answer to your possible explanations of why a couple of mods acted out of line and abused their power while ignoring their responsibilities.



(Note: any irritation you may detect from me is not directed at you personally.)



Quote:

There seems to be disagreement about whether the subject was too heated, and possibly there's also disagreement as to whether "too heated" is a valid reason for closing a thread, but if it was in fact "too heated," that seems likely to go beyond one particular member's personal situation. As to why the new thread would be closed, I dunno, maybe it's because the new thread-- and I do harp on here-- was expressly styled as a continuation of the old thread, which was allegedly too heated.



There is very little disagreement about whether the thread was "too heated." One mod mentioned that, but from Skylark's post it is pretty clear the thread was closed because her feelings were hurt.



Quote:

I'm not so sure I agree, not necessarily. Although I admit it doesn't look great, there appears to be a probably conflict of interest, and your answer appears right now to be the most likely answer, I can still allow for the possibility that it was done out of principle, because closing the new thread is exactly what I would have done as a mod, because as I mentioned above, it's common sense to me that you don't permit a new thread to be immediately started on the same subject when the previous one has gone south.



1.) The other thread had not gone south.

2.) No reason was given for closing said thread.

3.) The new thread was different, as it did not mention the personal issues raised by Skylark, which were what seemed to upset her.



In the past, the better VB mods would have never have closed the new thread.
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#46 Old 08-07-2006, 02:22 AM
 
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I've done some serious skimming in this thread, so this may have been covered already, but a couple of things come quickly to mind.



The "babysitter" idea. I would of course, have chosen other language, but I understand what you mean, and don't deny that sometimes that's the tactic used by moderators (including myself). Some folks are annoyed by this, saying that posters should be allowed to bash themselves at will. However, there are just as many that are frustrated when threads in which there had been genuine discussion turn largely into insult-fests. The "say whatever you want" group dismisses the others as thin-skinned, but it's not just that. It's a comment on the kind of place they want VB to be. No holds barred arguing is fine if that's what you want, but many seem to be saying that it's NOT. One could say..they just shouldn't post in the thread. Well, that's easy to say, but the number of threads that disintegrate into bickering is quite large. So, they could leave VB. But then, that's saying that their opinion isn't as valuable as the members in the Say Anything group.



re: the closing of the new thread...it's open after some discussion by the mods (unless something's happened that I've not seen yet). I'd like to move past the open/close issue and discuss the subject at hand. I've been away from VB for much of the weekend, otherwise I'd probably have typed something before.

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#47 Old 08-07-2006, 08:17 AM
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The "babysitter" idea. I would of course, have chosen other language, but I understand what you mean, and don't deny that sometimes that's the tactic used by moderators (including myself). Some folks are annoyed by this, saying that posters should be allowed to bash themselves at will. However, there are just as many that are frustrated when threads in which there had been genuine discussion turn largely into insult-fests. The "say whatever you want" group dismisses the others as thin-skinned, but it's not just that. It's a comment on the kind of place they want VB to be. No holds barred arguing is fine if that's what you want, but many seem to be saying that it's NOT. One could say..they just shouldn't post in the thread. Well, that's easy to say, but the number of threads that disintegrate into bickering is quite large. So, they could leave VB. But then, that's saying that their opinion isn't as valuable as the members in the Say Anything group.



I think you missed my intent of the "babysitter" comment. The poster I was replying to was saying that in this case the mods closed the thread to essentially protect us from ourselves, because it might get more heated.

What you are discussing is when a thread has already become heated.

There were no insults in the thread Skylark chose to close. Yes, a few of us commented on Skylark's situation personally, but no insults were used, and hey - she's the one who brought it up.

And seriously, this thread was light compared to most in the Heap, so the "too heated" comment from The Clique isn't cuting it for me.



Quote:

re: the closing of the new thread...it's open after some discussion by the mods (unless something's happened that I've not seen yet). I'd like to move past the open/close issue and discuss the subject at hand. I've been away from VB for much of the weekend, otherwise I'd probably have typed something before.



Why was there even discussion about this thread? That is what I want answered. And I am going to continue to harp on it until the mods involved come clean.



I seriously think a few mods need to rethink if they are suited for the job.
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#48 Old 08-07-2006, 09:55 AM
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"I decided to close this thread." That's cause? Ridiculous, absurd, and inexcusable.

It is if "request of the OP" is recognized as a legitimate cause for closing a thread, as distinguished from threads closed for administrative reasons because, for example, they reached their maximum post count or they simply expired.

Quote:
Obviously you haven't read the threads. The "continued" referred to the off-subject conversation started in the thread that was closed (without cause.)

You're absolutely right, I haven't. So you say it was an off-topic discussion. All right, whatever you say. But if I were a mod, any mod, trying to decide if a thread needed to be closed, two thought processes would be going through my mind. One I already mentioned, is that the title "X continued" and the statement "I would like to continue the discussion," make it look an awful lot like it's intended to be the same conversation continued. Two, if someone wants to to start a new thread to handle a conversation that's OT in the original thread, common practice is to give it a new title that describes the new topic, followed by a parenthetical clarifying which thread it was split from. When a thread is that cleverly disguised as a continuation of the same topic, I don't think I could blame a mod for incorrectly concluding that it is in fact a continuation of the same topic.

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In the past, direct comments (ex. "you shouldn't post in this topic because you have no idea what you are talking about") have been what that rules was directed at.

Ok, then. But if you mean that literally, wouldn't putting it that literally open the door for people who are slightly more sophisticated to engage in a lot of underhanded tactics designed to discourage free discussion, but that stop short of overtly saying, "Shut up you idiot!" or the equivalent of it? I figure there has to be some room for mods to look at a post and conclude that it is in fact discouraging someone from posting even though it doesn't literally say, "Don't post." Again, not accusing you of doing that in the thread in question since I don't know what was said. Just exploring the boundaries of the rules we have and how they might be interpreted and enforced.

Quote:
And it is absurd to assert that by continuing a discussion that implies some tyype of harassment is intended, and I do take offense at the mere suggestion of that as a possibility. I also don't think pre-emptive thread closing on the possibility something may happen is within even a broad view of the TOS, and it does not follow board precedent (which cannot be ignored.)

Well, if your final answer is that you think my reasoning is absurd and offensive and that's all there is to it, we don't have anything else to talk about, and we might as well agree to disagree and walk away. But I think you're banking a lot on your repeated assertions that it wasn't the same topic and there was no TOS violation. I don't think either of those, coming after the fact, is helpful to the analysis. Setting those points aside, I agree with you that it's not appropriate to just ignore board precedent unless it's pre-empted by the rules. But at the same time, precedent isn't set in stone. Old precedents change, and new precedents happen, which is why if I became a mod tomorrow I would quickly establish a policy of always closing threads that appear to be the same subject and are opened immediately after the old thread has been closed for cause, including the cause of "request by the OP."

Quote:
I'm not the least bit upset at you.

OK, I guess it depends how you define "upset," but your first response to me suggested that you thought I was actually claiming you personally had violated TOS, and now you've said that you're offended. Crying "offense!" at the mere inclusion of a possible TOS violation in the universe of analysis seems a little over-defensive, if not verging on upset. Maybe it wasn't person B who violated TOS. It could have been anyone in the thread, and in my original post I allowed for that. If there had been a violation, regardless of who it was, and regardless of who tried to continue the discussion, I would apply the rules in the exact same way I already have.

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This isn't about theoretical situations. I am addressing what happened in answer to your possible explanations of why a couple of mods acted out of line and abused their power while ignoring their responsibilities.

Then we're just talking at cross purposes, because my post, and the gist of this conversation from my POV, has been entirely theoretical and has been directed at exploring the rules and interpretations which could potentially lead a mod to close a thread that doesn't immediately fit into any of our known reasons for closing a thread. What I'm trying to get at isn't about whether a given mod was right or wrong or abusing power, or about whether a given member violated TOS.
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#49 Old 08-07-2006, 10:37 AM
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It is if "request of the OP" is recognized as a legitimate cause for closing a thread, as distinguished from threads closed for administrative reasons because, for example, they reached their maximum post count or they simply expired.



That is a somewhat legitimate cause, but it does not preclude others followinga similar topic.



Quote:

You're absolutely right, I haven't. So you say it was an off-topic discussion. All right, whatever you say. But if I were a mod, any mod, trying to decide if a thread needed to be closed, two thought processes would be going through my mind. One I already mentioned, is that the title "X continued" and the statement "I would like to continue the discussion," make it look an awful lot like it's intended to be the same conversation continued. Two, if someone wants to to start a new thread to handle a conversation that's OT in the original thread, common practice is to give it a new title that describes the new topic, followed by a parenthetical clarifying which thread it was split from. When a thread is that cleverly disguised as a continuation of the same topic, I don't think I could blame a mod for incorrectly concluding that it is in fact a continuation of the same topic.



If they read the first post where I specifically referenced the conversation I started with IAJ, then no, they would have no reason to make the assumptions you say are logical.

The mods engage in the practice of the parentheses, and as far as I know, my not using them does not justify closing the thread.

At worst, those should have been added, instead of the incompetent decision made by Synergy at the behest of Skylark.



Quote:

Ok, then. But if you mean that literally, wouldn't putting it that literally open the door for people who are slightly more sophisticated to engage in a lot of underhanded tactics designed to discourage free discussion, but that stop short of overtly saying, "Shut up you idiot!" or the equivalent of it? I figure there has to be some room for mods to look at a post and conclude that it is in fact discouraging someone from posting even though it doesn't literally say, "Don't post." Again, not accusing you of doing that in the thread in question since I don't know what was said. Just exploring the boundaries of the rules we have and how they might be interpreted and enforced.



Again, if you don't read the threads, these hypotheticals are a waste of time. They simply do not apply.

Quote:

Well, if your final answer is that you think my reasoning is absurd and offensive and that's all there is to it, we don't have anything else to talk about, and we might as well agree to disagree and walk away. But I think you're banking a lot on your repeated assertions that it wasn't the same topic and there was no TOS violation. I don't think either of those, coming after the fact, is helpful to the analysis. Setting those points aside, I agree with you that it's not appropriate to just ignore board precedent unless it's pre-empted by the rules. But at the same time, precedent isn't set in stone. Old precedents change, and new precedents happen, which is why if I became a mod tomorrow I would quickly establish a policy of always closing threads that appear to be the same subject and are opened immediately after the old thread has been closed for cause, including the cause of "request by the OP."



Goddamnit, someone asking a thread to be closed does not mean no one can ever discuss a similar topic again. Christ on a crutch, how hard is it to figure that out?



Quote:

OK, I guess it depends how you define "upset," but your first response to me suggested that you thought I was actually claiming you personally had violated TOS, and now you've said that you're offended. Crying "offense!" at the mere inclusion of a possible TOS violation in the universe of analysis seems a little over-defensive, if not verging on upset. Maybe it wasn't person B who violated TOS. It could have been anyone in the thread, and in my original post I allowed for that. If there had been a violation, regardless of who it was, and regardless of who tried to continue the discussion, I would apply the rules in the exact same way I already have.



Sorry, I keep slipping and treating you as if you are the mods in question who don't have the decency to come forward and discuss the matter.

Again, you are discussing hypotheticals that do not apply, so this does get wearisome, as I would prefer those who did this come forward and give their side, rather than you guess about what may have happened without reading the thread.



I will say that your interpretation of the mod guidelines and TOS is way off, and I certainly hope if you ever are a mod you reconsider them.



Quote:

Then we're just talking at cross purposes, because my post, and the gist of this conversation from my POV, has been entirely theoretical and has been directed at exploring the rules and interpretations which could potentially lead a mod to close a thread that doesn't immediately fit into any of our known reasons for closing a thread. What I'm trying to get at isn't about whether a given mod was right or wrong or abusing power, or about whether a given member violated TOS.



You can't determine right or wrong without looking at the specific situation.

Fact: no TOS violation occurred.

Fact: reasonable members see no reason the thread should have been closed.

Fact: a related thread should not be closed because someone in another thread decided to take her ball and go home, and this has never been the case before.

Fact: my thread was closed because The Clique decided to back Skylark at the expense of the TOS.
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#50 Old 08-07-2006, 11:08 AM
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I will say that your interpretation of the mod guidelines and TOS is way off, and I certainly hope if you ever are a mod you reconsider them.

I have no plans to reconsider it just because one person, former mod or not, thinks my reasoning is absurd, but if Michael and the rest of the mod team made it clear to me as a new mod that they disagree with my interpretation and will not support me in enforcing it, I'd have very little choice but to go along. But I don't think you need to worry about that-- if I were invited to be a mod, I doubt I would accept.

Quote:
someone asking a thread to be closed does not mean no one can ever discuss a similar topic again.

You are misreading my text. I actually agree with this statement. I said if I were a mod, I would always close threads that are opened immediately after a thread on the same topic has just been closed for cause (again, including the cause of "request by the OP"). I never said that I would prohibit discussion of similar topics forever, and I would not in fact do that.
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#51 Old 08-07-2006, 11:12 AM
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Originally Posted by Tesseract View Post


You are misreading my text. I actually agree with this statement. I said if I were a mod, I would always close threads that are opened immediately after a thread on the same topic has just been closed for cause (again, including the cause of "request by the OP"). I never said that I would prohibit discussion of similar topics forever, and I would not in fact do that.





Your reasoning is still incorrect, as the new thread was a ****ing different topic, as it did not apply to Skylark's personal situation.

Playing devil's advocate is one thing, ignoring the facts is another.
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#52 Old 08-07-2006, 11:25 AM
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I've had about enough of you cursing at me. If you can't be civil to me, we're through.
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#53 Old 08-07-2006, 11:38 AM
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I'm done with you until you read the thread and quit inventing strange interpretations of the TOS.
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#54 Old 08-07-2006, 11:45 AM
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I always figured it would only be a matter of time until you made it onto my Ignore list, but frankly I'm amazed you lasted this long. Goodbye, Tame.
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#55 Old 08-07-2006, 11:45 AM
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Toodles!
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#56 Old 08-07-2006, 12:35 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Tame View Post

I think you missed my intent of the "babysitter" comment. The poster I was replying to was saying that in this case the mods closed the thread to essentially protect us from ourselves, because it might get more heated.



What you are discussing is when a thread has already become heated.



There were no insults in the thread Skylark chose to close. Yes, a few of us commented on Skylark's situation personally, but no insults were used, and hey - she's the one who brought it up.



And seriously, this thread was light compared to most in the Heap, so the "too heated" comment from The Clique isn't cuting it for me.

I did misunderstand your original comment, I thought you were responding to a post about already heated threads.



re: Skylark's closing of the thread. "Per request of the o.p." is generally accepted as a reason to close a thread. It doesn't really matter what the op's reasons are..it's come to be a VB manner of etiquette that the op retains that right. Perhaps it's a bad rule (I don't think it is), but it's not one new to VB.



I don't think any of the mods are saying that the new thread was "too heated". At least not at this point.



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Why was there even discussion about this thread? That is what I want answered. And I am going to continue to harp on it until the mods involved come clean.

To what end? The thread is reopened. I think it's clear to all reading/involved in this discussion that the mod team reconsidered the discussion. Is it that you want to feel vindicated? I think that's already been covered, since the decision was reversed. Do you want to bash the mods you believe to be responsible? If so, for what purpose? It's not the first time a mod decision has been reversed after discussion. I suspect that such things happened while you were on the mod team..you know the drill. Someone says "I'm not sure about...". Mods/Michael weigh in and sometime an action is reversed. (I even had a ban lifted once ) I'm not sure why this is so important.



As far as satisfaction with mod staff overall, those complaints need to be directed to Michael, since he's our boss.

The ones I pity are the ones who never stick out their neck for something they believe, never know the taste of moral struggle, and never have the thrill of victory. - Jonathan Kozol
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#57 Old 08-07-2006, 12:43 PM
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I did misunderstand your original comment, I thought you were responding to a post about already heated threads.



re: Skylark's closing of the thread. "Per request of the o.p." is generally accepted as a reason to close a thread. It doesn't really matter what the op's reasons are..it's come to be a VB manner of etiquette that the op retains that right. Perhaps it's a bad rule (I don't think it is), but it's not one new to VB.



I don't think any of the mods are saying that the new thread was "too heated". At least not at this point.



I agree she was within her right to close her thread, and I do not blame her. In fact, I don't think it was a bad idea.



Quote:

To what end? The thread is reopened. I think it's clear to all reading/involved in this discussion that the mod team reconsidered the discussion. Is it that you want to feel vindicated? I think that's already been covered, since the decision was reversed. Do you want to bash the mods you believe to be responsible? If so, for what purpose? It's not the first time a mod decision has been reversed after discussion. I suspect that such things happened while you were on the mod team..you know the drill. Someone says "I'm not sure about...". Mods/Michael weigh in and sometime an action is reversed. (I even had a ban lifted once ) I'm not sure why this is so important.



Because this is not the first time this has happened involving me and a couple of mods, I am tired of it, and I want those certain mods to accept responsibility, admit for once they were wrong, and then go forth and sin no more.

As long as they are allowed to hide behind the collective mod skirt and carry on as if they did nothing wrong, then they have no incentive to change.



Had someone simply replied to the post I reported to bring this up with a simple "Hey, we are talking about this, we'll get back to you...", I would have not had as much of an issue.

Instead, as usual, they ducked the matter.
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#58 Old 08-07-2006, 12:47 PM
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However, there are just as many that are frustrated when threads in which there had been genuine discussion turn largely into insult-fests.

Certainly, but how will closing a thread remove that frustration, and what about frustrating all the other people whose discussions in the thread were terminated?

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#59 Old 08-07-2006, 05:27 PM
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Tame, I replied to you via PM, I was not ignoring the situation-I apologised for the delay in my response- I was not online for a litle while since I had family in town, otherwise I would have gotten back at you sooner.



I closed your thread after there had been discussion of it in the mod forum. It was further discussed and the thread has been reopened.



If you have any further comments on my moderating abilities, please contact Michael directly.



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#60 Old 08-07-2006, 06:11 PM
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But if I were a mod, any mod, trying to decide if a thread needed to be closed, two thought processes would be going through my mind.



The first one should be, "do I understand what this thread (or post) is about, or am I misinterpreting things?"



If the thread should be closed, the second one should be, "OK, I'm going to go PM the OP now and explain..."
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