Observer wrote:HughMungus wrote:Dustbuddy wrote:In other words, it ain't broke, so let's fix it.
No. More like, let's fix it before it tears itself apart.
Except, Hugh, you've provided no evidence whatsoever that the current ePlaya is moving in that direction. Quite the contrary, if anything the mood has been getting calmer over the last year or two, even in the absence of any clearly identifiable scapegoat for people to take out their aggressions on. The subscribers don't seem to feel as much of a need to scream as they have been known to, in forums that haven't been moderated with as light a touch. This would suggest that what is being done right now is working.
On the other hand, "let's moderate in order to enforce civility" is something that, while it may sound promising, opens the door to abuse both by the modstaff, should they cease to be impartial, and by the kind of online mob that the Internet is all too good at gathering. It is not difficult to find cases in which a lone, unpopular poster (ie. a scapegoat) was ganged up on en masse, abused in the coarsest of terms, and then banned for his incivility when he voiced a mild objection to what was going on. Civility and provocation are things that can only be judged subjectively, and by dangling out the promise of being able to silence one's opposition by trumping up a charge which will be evaluated on such subjective grounds, one encourages the attempt.
You're defending a proposed change in policy on what would appear to be a claim of good intentions, but where history clearly suggests that the results are going to be perverse, those intentions will count for very little, assuming that they even are sincere ones. Forums where the masses can go cry to the moderators whenever they don't like what they're reading have not, historically, been civil places, and why would they be? In the end, the floor of discussion ends up under the control of whichever faction can scream the most loudly, and the free-floating rage that fuels much of the process is only enhanced by the anger many will feel when they discover that a hash has been made of their freedom of speech, formerly reasonable people gradually becoming ill-tempered as they become accustomed to the absence of justice. Hence the popularity of the cliche "tools, not rules".
Note the presence of the "ignore" function. Anything keeping you from using it?
I do use the ignore function. I have one person on ignore because I couldn't stand their snipey attacks on people. That poster is one reason I'm asking.
I do have examples of a recent rash of personal attacks. I'd point them out but spec kept saying not to post specific examples here.
Regarding civility and subjectivity, I'm referring to people being uncivil to each other vs. being uncivil to each other's ideas. The personal attacks I referred to a second ago are obviously nothing more than insults. Like I said earlier, attack my posts, ideas, opinions, whatever, all you want but when you attack someone personally, you've crossed a line. Not only that but one personal attack leads to another and then what good is a thread full of "fuck you".
Regarding a proposed change of policy, it wouldn't be. It would be an enforcement of the existing TOS. What we have now is instead of someone replying to a personal attack with another personal attack, they are largely ignored by the target. That's seemed to work pretty well so far but lately I've seen more and more personal attack comments (particularly from a few people who obviously haven't been here very long) so I wanted to bring it up so that those who obviously didn't read the TOS could be asked to do so so that we don't have bigger problems in the future when people realize that personal attacks are OK and THEN we have a bigger problem that DOES have to be over-moderated.