Members Leaving the Forum

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TheoSqua
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Members Leaving the Forum

Post by TheoSqua »

A couple of our more active posters have announced they're leaving the forum. Since mods were involved and we've heard that PMs are being sent out about it, I wanted to be transparent to the community and post what we saw from a mod perspective.

BAS and 33anda3rd had some heated arguments in the Politics forum. We felt it crossed the line. The forum was cleaned up and warnings issued, then the arguing continued the next day. We decided to ask both posters to refrain from posting on politics for 1 week as a cool off period.

BAS accepted this, while 33anda3rd responded with some conditions for him to stop posting for a week. I personally decided that negotiating a temporary ban with someone we felt crossed the line was a bad precedent, so I banned him for a week.

When I made the post last week about the bans, I didn't mention that the bans were initially equal but were changed in response to the posters reactions to a temp ban. So it came across that 33 had a harsher ban, which (from my understanding) he took as an insult deep enough to leave the forum for. In hindsight, I should have been more clear on why one poster was banned and one was not, but the intent was always for this to be temporary.

Generally we don't even communicate bans/warnings/etc. publicly, but the forum has had so much bickering lately that I hoped communicating this would help show we're making efforts to stop personal attacks and everyone would keep this in mind while posting. My personal goal is to start the 2020 season with the forum in a position to generate positive posts and good content. In hindsight, I think making the initial public post last week was a mistake. And i'm probably going to regret this post as well. But like I said, i'm trying to be transparent and make sure anyone contacted privately sees what happened from our perspective.

So a couple of final points:
  • The mods don't want to ban anyone. Our goal is to keep the forum guidelines in place and make this a community where everyone feels welcome to post without fear of being attacked personally. We know our decisions won't be perfect, but we try our best to make decisions from a moderation standpoint that reinforce that goal.
  • The mods try not to treat anyone differently when it comes to how we enforce our forum guidelines. Wether you've got 10k posts or 100, enjoy sabrmetrics or traditional stats, politically lean left or right, etc. If you're following the forum guidelines we want to treat you all the same. In this situation we made our best effort to treat both posters the same, since we felt they both violated the forum guidelines in the same way. Who started it, who is the better poster, who has more friends, etc. is not taken into account.
  • No one has been permanently banned by the mods. Both posters above are still welcome on the forum so long as they can follow our forum guidelines. I'll personally be sad to see anyone leave the forum.
  • If you have any questions/concerns/comments or feedback for us mods please send any of us a PM. We're trying to do our best, but we want to make sure the community agrees with what we're doing, and that we're on the same page about what can/can't be posted on the forum

AWvsCBsteeeerike3
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Re: Members Leaving the Forum

Post by AWvsCBsteeeerike3 »

I appreciate you making this/other information public.

One thing thrill hinted on and I think an issue that gets a lot of people into trouble is a clear lack of respect in posts. It's entirely possible to follow forum guidelines and not personally attack someone but at the same time be a real dick. And, once that happens, it's a quick race to the bottom of the internet to see who can be a bigger ass.

Post like 'uhhhh' 'lol' 'yeah' 'uh-uh' 'no' among countless, countless others don't technically break any rules. But, they also serve no purpose other than to humiliate and irritate. Which...probably isn't the best thing. And, they also show a clear lack of respect for the poster as they essentially convey the attitude that 'your post isn't even worthy of a response it's so worthless'.

33 pm'd me yesterday and told me of his intentions which are his prerogative. I hope he (and bas) come back. But, a cooling off period is probably for the best.

Looking back on everything, I've always been a fan/supporter of 33 throughout his time here. I understand he can rub people the wrong way and that's fine. We don't all have to agree. But, I always felt he, at a minimum, took the time to try to understand what other posters were saying. He could be snarky when pointing out why he was right, and he certainly didn't have a problem telling people he was right. Hence, rubbing people the wrong way. But, at least for me, I came to respect him because he at least cared enough to understand what people were saying....at least up to a point. A clear example of this was with jim. I remember one time 33 and jim had a disagreement. 33 offered a bet. He'd pay jim something, I think it was money but can't remember, if jim was right. But, if 33 was right, jim had to take 33 and possibly Michael to dinner in Chicago. And, jims response was essentially [expletive] off there's no way I'd go to dinner with you. So, 33 disagreed but still hadn't lost any personal respect...until the response. And, after that, it was all gone. Rightfully so.

Which brings me back to the respect angle. Once the respect is gone between posters, especially active posters that are involved across the forum, there's nothing mods can do. There's no magic pill that's going to stop posters from racing to the bottom of the internet to see who can get the last bazinga post in.

In the end, don't be a dick and respect one another. Try to understand one another. And, move on if you can't agree. There's no point in arguing on the internet. There is a lot that can be gained by listening and understanding other points of view, imo.

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ghostrunner
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Re: Members Leaving the Forum

Post by ghostrunner »

I think "Don't be a dick" is unwritten but obvious rule number one. When I was a mod I'd get caught up on "well, no guidelines were violated" but the person was clearly a problem.

I do think there's a problem with carrying arguments back and forth over pages. It makes whatever thread it happens in useless for everyone else. Maybe DMs aren't the solution but it'd be cool if there was some kind of way to curtail that beyond just reporting to mods who have lives and can't watch every thread.
Last edited by ghostrunner on January 29 20, 10:53 am, edited 1 time in total.

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33anda3rd
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Re: Members Leaving the Forum

Post by 33anda3rd »

TheoSqua wrote:BAS accepted this, while 33anda3rd responded with some conditions for him to stop posting for a week. I personally decided that negotiating a temporary ban with someone we felt crossed the line was a bad precedent, so I banned him for a week.
Your expectation was that you could treat me the same as you treated a board troll who baselessly called me a racist in public and that I'd be like "ok, see ya in a week!" and that's...well, you know me better, and you know better than to make a decision like that.

The negotiation you're referring to was a solution. Remove a name-calling troll, keep a smart and well-regarded long-term member, I leave politics for 4X the time you asked to provide an overall cooling off, it's a win for everyone except the name-calling troll. You passed and thought it was arrogance on my part. I'm not surprised that you admit to this being a decision you made personally and not with consensus among the mods, given the number of personal swipes you've taken at me over the years, from expressing anger that I was right about something or saying "you make it hard to like you" to me.

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Jocephus
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Re: Members Leaving the Forum

Post by Jocephus »

since BAS called me out specifically i've been hesitant to respond but he also called me out so...the ironic thing with BAS to me is that a lot of his thoughts i didn't necessarily disagree with (both baseball and politics forums)...it was his posting "style". very aggressive, very arrogant, the constant editing of his posts to either tone down his initial response, or to add/alter takes to people who replied to him. he was a bit of a bat out of hell or tasmanian devil to me. to me, it's not like he grew into that, that was him from the get go. he also bypassed the swear filter to specifically let 33 know what he thought in this last dust up. in his farewell post he admits he butted heads a lot but then wants a gracious exit? in his last post in the pete thread he says he doesn't want to derail the thread but goes ahead and makes his statement which very well could derail the thread. he also liked to call me the forum cop so maybe i am since i notice these things.

33 certainly has a style too, some might say aggressive and arrogant and while i could absorb 33's posts more easily i've certainly gotten frustrated with some of his posts and i understand why some may be put off on him as well but ultimately it was/is easier to "ignore" him than BAS, for me at least.

admittedly, i'm on this forum a lot as it's essentially my homepage and i've been here since '06 and enjoy the various random and specific discussions. i've also taken several sabbaticals so i know those are healthy too. that said, based on forum history i would guess/assume both posters will be back at some point. perhaps it's an indictment on me but there are some posters i choose to not reply to, it's just not healthy for me to engage with and i don't want to get banned. BAS was one of those but every once in awhile he would just push it where i couldn't help but respond. is that on me or him? i dont know. i do wish i could be as level headed as say fat, sigh, ghost or AD.

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Re: Members Leaving the Forum

Post by Arthur Dent »

33anda3rd wrote:The negotiation you're referring to was a solution ... keep a smart and well-regarded long-term member ... You passed and thought it was arrogance on my part.
Hmmm

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33anda3rd
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Re: Members Leaving the Forum

Post by 33anda3rd »

Arthur Dent wrote:
33anda3rd wrote:The negotiation you're referring to was a solution ... keep a smart and well-regarded long-term member ... You passed and thought it was arrogance on my part.
Hmmm
For the majority of active posters I am well-regarded, my intelligence and opinions respected. That's certainly not universal but it's true of the majority. Especially regarding the people on this board who actually discuss, don't just post UGH MO SUCKS.

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haltz
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Re: Members Leaving the Forum

Post by haltz »

since BAS called me out specifically i've been hesitant to respond but he also called me out so...the ironic thing with BAS to me is that a lot of his thoughts i didn't necessarily disagree with (both baseball and politics forums)...it was his posting "style". very aggressive, very arrogant, the constant editing of his posts to either tone down his initial response, or to add/alter takes to people who replied to him. he was a bit of a bat out of hell or tasmanian devil to me. to me, it's not like he grew into that, that was him from the get go.
Same here so I'll respond as well. I had a tough time with the bad faith arguments and his omnipresence in threads. He really made it harder to talk and read about baseball here which violates what I would say should be the ultimate unwritten rule, above even "don't be a dick." I'm sure moderating is hard, but they're guidelines not some sort of constitution. I really don't think following the letter of the law should be enough to post here 47 times a day.
BAS accepted this, while 33anda3rd responded with some conditions for him to stop posting for a week. I personally decided that negotiating a temporary ban with someone we felt crossed the line was a bad precedent, so I banned him for a week.
Conditions for a week or for a month? I'm under the impression that he offered to take even longer off than the original ban in exchange for BAS being banned permanently. Why did this result in a stronger punishment, was it offensive somehow?

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Re: Members Leaving the Forum

Post by heyzeus »

haltz wrote: Conditions for a week or for a month? I'm under the impression that he offered to take even longer off than the original ban in exchange for BAS being banned permanently. Why did this result in a stronger punishment, was it offensive somehow?
Instead of deleting the offensive posts like we usually do, I decided to leave them up so everyone can see the kind of discourse that was taking place and the mods aren't just here saying vague things like "it was unacceptable, attacking the poster, etc." No, I want you all to be able to see what was happening, so it's not just abstract when I say that corrosive discourse - and to be direct, it was not limited to one person - is destructive to this forum.

Both BAS and Middle were asked to take a seven day break from posting in Politics to cool off, reset our collective switches, and come back to having discussions and arguments according to forum guidelines. BAS did. Middle responded immediately to say that he would not follow that direction, so a seven day suspension was imposed. That's why there was a "stronger punishment."

At this point that punishment is over, and it's everyone's choice whether they wish to participate in the forum.

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Re: Members Leaving the Forum

Post by Radbird »

heyzeus wrote:
haltz wrote: Conditions for a week or for a month? I'm under the impression that he offered to take even longer off than the original ban in exchange for BAS being banned permanently. Why did this result in a stronger punishment, was it offensive somehow?
Instead of deleting the offensive posts like we usually do, I decided to leave them up so everyone can see the kind of discourse that was taking place and the mods aren't just here saying vague things like "it was unacceptable, attacking the poster, etc." No, I want you all to be able to see what was happening, so it's not just abstract when I say that corrosive discourse - and to be direct, it was not limited to one person - is destructive to this forum.

Both BAS and Middle were asked to take a seven day break from posting in Politics to cool off, reset our collective switches, and come back to having discussions and arguments according to forum guidelines. BAS did. Middle responded immediately to say that he would not follow that direction, so a seven day suspension was imposed. That's why there was a "stronger punishment."

At this point that punishment is over, and it's everyone's choice whether they wish to participate in the forum.
In addition to the posts left up there were approximately 3 dozen that were deleted. There comes a point in time where the mods have to say enough is enough.

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