The Instigator
Danielle
Pro (for)
Winning
14 Points
The Contender
Ren
Con (against)
Losing
3 Points

Mods should work to prevent and sanction personal attacks.

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 5 votes the winner is...
Danielle
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/11/2012 Category: Entertainment
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 3,151 times Debate No: 23550
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (5)
Votes (5)

 

Danielle

Pro

This debate was inspired by WriterDave's thread: http://www.debate.org...

In the OP, WriterDave suggests that the current moderator(s) ought to respond to personal insults and attacks by deleting abusive posts and comments. Taken a step further, repeat offenders should be banned. Almost every single person who posted in the thread disagrees with these sentiments, so I should have absolutely no problem finding an opponent for this debate.

Round 1 will be utilized for acceptance and clarifications; I will begin my opening arguments in Round 2. Thank you.
Ren

Con

I'm accepting this debate as-is. I anticipate an interesting and lively debate.

State your peace.
Debate Round No. 1
Danielle

Pro

Thank you, Ren, for engaging with me in this debate. I look forward to an insightful exchange.

-- Background --

Juggle bought this website for $100K. It hasn't remotely begun to make that money back. We therefore have every reason to assume that Juggle's primary motivation in keeping DDO afloat is to profit or at least break even on its investment, otherwise it has no reason to continue operations or making improvements to the site. Making money from DDO would require growing and strengthening an active membership that involves not only recruiting members but keeping them.

What draws people to DDO in the first place is the premise/purpose of the site: to debate a variety of subjects - not to insult people or engage in ad hominem attacks and/or instigate divisive flame wars. Doing so would significantly diminish the quality and perhaps even quantity (members) that participate here. This would interfere with Juggle's overall goal which is to make money. Juggle acknowledges this, hence specifying in the Terms of Service (TOS) that insulting and harassing members is specifically prohibited.

When creating your account, you must agree to adhere to the rules of the TOS or else expect to face penalties, including the possibility of having your account closed or perhaps being banned from utilizing the site all-together. The TOS explicitly states that you must agree to not upload, copy, distribute, share or otherwise use content that is unlawful, obscene, defamatory, libelous, harmful, hateful, harassing, pornographic, threatening, racially or ethnically offensive or abusive [1]. There are other prohibitions, but we can assume that posting overtly offensive comments is the primary focus of this debate.

The user known as WriterDave suggested that inappropriate comments (as determined by the TOS that everyone agreed to adhere by) ought to be removed, and that perhaps repeat antagonistic offenders have their accounts suspended or closed in order to enforce compliance with the TOS. In retaliation, most members cried fascism and opposed this idea on the grounds that censorship would interfere with the merit and overall enjoyment of the site. It will be my opponent's burden to uphold this idea, or argue against moderators working to prevent and penalize personal attacks as outlined by the TOS.

-- Contentions --

1. You do not have any "rights" on Juggle outside of what Juggle agrees to. Juggle has specifically prohibited offensive comments (see TOS), so it doesn't matter if individual users don't care about said comments or wish to engage in posting them. The fact is that they have chosen to abide by Juggle's rules in agreeing to utilize this FREE service, so their individual opinions are irrelevant. If they want to post content that Juggle does not condone, they are free to withdraw their membership and post said content elsewhere. While Juggle has no obligation to monitor disputes, it has apparently found it useful to do so in some capacity. There is a precedent of them doing so. If Juggle finds it appropriate to penalize members for violating the TOS, that's their prerogative.

2. You can argue that some users are okay with unmoderated comments, and therefore to appease the membership Juggle should allow it. However that is only the case if it can be proven that a community filled with permissible libel and slander will ultimately attract and keep members to contribute to Juggle's overall goal - generating revenue. I will argue that it is in Juggle's best interest to protect the integrity of the site by ensuring it remains a relatively inviting and insightful community, rather than an unnecessarily rude and hostile one.

3. Moreover, I will argue that the community as a whole will benefit from said moderation even though the site has no obligation to provide it. In fact, when we didn't have moderators, members were whining incessantly about the lack of enforcing rules on Juggle's end. Some even relied on vigilante justice (and this was praised). If the overall consensus is that the community will benefit from moderation, then it ought to be acknowledged that enforcing the rules as outlined via the TOS is the primary purpose of having moderators in the first place.

4. Moderators are ultimately chosen by Juggle. While the community's input is valuable, Juggle has the final say in who has certain abilities to add/remove content. The user known as innomen is one unpaid moderator; Juggle has several other employees who also mod. People who sign up for DDO have automatically agreed to accept the moderation tendencies of the people Juggle has chosen to enforce the rules.

5. I think we can all agree that innomen has been a decent moderator thus far, as have the other mods appointed by Juggle. As such, it is reasonable to assume that the modding decisions these individuals will continue to make in the future will not be absurd or unwarranted (excessive in scope). To my knowledge, nobody has been banned for making a few rude comments. Only overtly antagonistic offenders who have crossed the line repeatedly have been banned, and that was after several warnings. Therefore one must wonder why it would be so harmful to the site to have moderators continue the practice of banning troublesome members, which mods here already do.

6. We have absolutely no reason to believe that any and every post someone finds offensive will be removed and/or the poster penalized. In fact the word moderate itself means "keeping within reasonable limits." You cannot please everyone, and some people are more sensitive than others. Instead what we can expect based on precedent is that reported public comments are to be removed if they are found to be unwarranted and overtly offensive by the moderator's discretion. While calling someone names that can be perceived as derogatory (i.e., racist) is somewhat inevitable on a website such as DDO, making fun of someone's physical appearance, or insulting their sexuality or otherwise irrelevant personal attacks ought not to be condoned. They serve no useful or relevant purpose to the site other than making members feel hurt or unwelcome. This is bad for Juggle's public image and promotes a bad and business model counter-productive to their goals.

-- Conclusion --

There's no point in making members agree to abide by rules if the rules aren't going to be enforced. The resolution simply calls for the appointed moderators to carry out the duties assigned to them, which includes but is not limited to enforcing the TOS. In order to enforce the rules, you have to sanction personal attacks that devalue the integrity of the site. This works to prevent future harassment, and promotes a respectful and rewarding exchange amongst members even if they disagree. This is beneficial insofar as upholding Juggle's values, and setting a standard of integrity for members to operate by. I see little to no drawbacks of expecting moderators to moderate. Not all offensive posts are expected to be removed; only the overtly harsh ones invoking unwarranted personal attacks. It is incredibly insulting to the current moderator(s) and community at large to insinuate that you cannot tell the difference between a blatant personal attack and perhaps a rude comment said in jest. Even the occasional disagreement over an ambiguous comment is not enough to negate the benefits of upholding the resolution.

Thank you and good luck.

[1] http://www.debate.org...
Ren

Con

Rebuttals

R1. We have absolutely no idea what Juggle's intentions are.

We did not join this site as shareholders or stakeholders in what we understand to be the conglomerate that owns it. Debate-dot-org is a proprietary Internet location (website), and accordingly, is intellectual the property of Juggle. But, this does not make any suggestions whatsoever as to what mechanism this location, or what Juggle has sustained here, serves for Juggle as an organization. As you'll see here: http://www.juggle.com... began by providing "structured, comparable information on a plethora of topics." They basically paid people to create copy that they sold to others to, perhaps, improve their websites or whatever and whallah -- they started catching on. This aligns neatly with what Debate-dot-org tends to be. However, to our knowledge, Juggle has not used the information we publish on this site in any proprietary way. Indeed, we are even free of advertisements. Mysteriously existing autonomously and with completely sovereignty, we are enjoying a sort of free and genuine stream of thought, that aught not be bastardized by stringent parameters and strict reactions.

R2. Making money for this site is not the responsibility, or even in the interest, of its members.

As neither shareholders, nor stockholders, nor under any written, verbal, or implied agreement that we would act in the interests of Juggle, or its financial stability, there is no interest in the members of this website to bear any concern for the profitability of Juggle when posting material on this site. At most, we are compelled by law to refrain from damaging the company's image or profitability, which, within the scope of interacting on this website, is essentially impossible to determine. Ultimately, it should be acknowledged that the opinions expressed here do not reflect Juggle as a company in any way, and thus, the interests of Juggle are irrelevant in kind. It is therefore best to leave harsh reactions to severe circumstances, such as spamming, unrelenting harrassment, breaches of local or federal law, or posting pornography. Not minor squabbles.

R3. DDO is not the only one of its kind.

Although my opponent presented good reasons as to why one would like to have access to a website like Debate-dot-org, the fact is that this website is not the only one of its kind. In fact, there are several websites on which any member of this website can experience many, if not all, of the benefits of interacting with the people here at Debate-dot-org.

Don't get me wrong. i don't think that the misconduct should be condoned. All I'm saying is that it is inevitable; don't you think it would be boring without the occassional harmless personal attack?

R4. The Terms of Service for proper conduct on this site is historically subject to selective application on an as-needed basis.

The Terms of Service is not a viable argument, as it is only selectively applied to maintain order, rather than ubiquitously and pedantically applied in order to maintain authority.

R5. In accordance with your assertions that (1) it is fact that members of this site has chosen to agree to utilize this free service on a noncompulsory nature, rendering individual opinions irrelevant; (2) members are welcome to join other sites if they do not enjoy their time here; and (3) Juggle has no obligation to even approach minor disputes,

...it is completely fallacious to have any sort of reactionary measures result from WriterDave's requests, which were made under the assumption that, at the very least, Juggle has a vested interest in what is ultimately the opinion of a single member, with a handful of supporters.

Arguments

A1. The power you give one person or a few people is proportionate to the amount of power you remove from the website at large.

In supporting the active censureship and penalization for petty exchanges removes control of how the people on this website can express themselves. That can result in stifled opinions and otherwise insightful conversations curtailed due to what may eventually be a misjudgement by an incompetent moderator.

Innomen is not going to be who he is forever. No matter how long he serves as President, Mod, King, God, Buddha, and Jesus, eventually, there's going to be the day when he's like, "Okay, kids, this is ______, I'm going to go do something else, now." And, ultimately, that wil happen again and again, and eventually, as the probability goes up with each cycle, there will be someone that we will not want to have the sort of power we are so open to giving Innomen.

A2. The responsibilty should not rest on the moderators to ensure the forums maintain a semblance of what is ultimately an abstraction.

It is impossible to maintain a completely unoffensive environment and the free expression of ideas simultaneously. People in the religion forum, for example, take everything to heart and personally, as they are discussing something they base their lifestyle around to some degree. Therefore, many arguments are considered personal attacks, and often offensive, whether or not it was intended in religious discussions. Under such authority, where a moderator or a team of moderators actively police the forum to maintain some censored and muted version of everyone's knowledge and opinions, the religion forum would have to be completely eradicated.

A3. The nature of debate is opposition.

in fact, the very nature of debate is opposition of one's opinions. Therefore, one way or another, you are most often going to be verbally attacking something in your statement or response to whatever was initially posted. For example, in the previous section of this response, I attacked each of your primary arguments, and presented my own. That is the nature of debate.

Some of these attacks are bound to become personal to a degree, and it should not warrant any sort of extraordinary response by moderators nor members.

A4. This website has proven capable of moderating itself to a degree.

Although there are those that have blatantly breached the terms of service and threatened order within the forum or debate sections of this website and were thus banned, the majority of general misconduct has gone completely unapproached throughout my stay here. However, those that committed this misconduct were often shunned, and thereafter incurred difficulty getting attention and participating in threads. Such people even received negative criticism, which mounted to the degree that they decided to leave on their own cognizance.

Accordingly, this website can even moderate itself to a degree, which negates the need for an active censureship of what is posted.
Debate Round No. 2
Danielle

Pro

-- Re: Rebuttals --

R1. We have every reason to believe that Juggle's intention is profit, and no reason to believe that it's not. Unless my opponent provides us with a better incentive, then for all intents and purposes, rational thinking requires us to presume that generating revenue is Juggle's primary goal in running and improving DDO. Even if it were not the case, what we DO know is that Juggle's intent is NOT to serve as a medium for people to harass and antagonize other people.

R2. Nowhere did I ever imply that making money was member responsibility, therefore this is not even a "rebuttal" and I have no idea why my opponent labeled it as such. However Con rightfully points out, "At most we are compelled by law to refrain from damaging the company's image or profitability." Blatantly ignoring the agreed upon TOS and making it appear as if Juggle condones harassment or personal attacks when it clearly does not (as clarified by Juggle employees) counts as tarnishing in the company's image and therefore potential profitability. Con also concedes that "harsh reactions" be utilized to deal with unrelenting harrassment, so he's already conceded this entire debate as that counts as mod interference to prevent and sanction personal attacks. It should also be noted that a mod sanctioning a personal attack by merely removing a comment should hardly be considered a "harsh reaction."

R3. Con's point is that DDO would be boring without personal attacks. I disagree, but regardless that's irrelevant. Personal attacks have pushed away a handful of members who have admitted to leaving the site due to harassment. This implies that the incessant insults were not harmless as my opponent suggests. We have proof that DDO has lost members due to permissible harassment; we have no proof that members are drawn to DDO due to permissible harassment. This proves that harassment is a liability and not an asset to DDO.

R4. Con points out that that mods enforce rules selectively. I'm arguing why they should continue to enforce them. This is not an argument in favor of why they should not enforce them, making this a completely useless contention. If anything it supports my notion that mod interference in punishing offenders is/will be minimal and subject only to the comments that have been reported as insulting to particular member(s), or considered out of the ordinary rude.

R5. Con writes, "It is completely fallacious to have any sort of reactionary measures result from WriterDave's requests, which were made under the assumption that, at the very least, Juggle has a vested interest in what is ultimately the opinion of a single member, with a handful of supporters."

First of all, you're misusing the word fallacious. That is a huge pet peeve of mine. Second, this debate has nothing to do with WriterDave in particular (though his thread did inspire this topic). You clearly want voters to based on their opinion of his dramatic legal threats rather than the actual issue at hand as described by the resolution and opening round, which is completely independent of that single user. This is a cheap shot. Hopefully people actually read this debate (I doubt it) and vote accordingly rather than fall into this trap.

Third, Juggle clearly has a vested interest in maintaining a specific harassment-free environment, as evidenced once again by the TOS and commentary made by Juggle employees and representatives who have clarified this many times. More importantly, I'm not sure this "rebuttal" makes any sense. What is your point - that Juggle shouldn't care about this issue if only a few members support active moderation? I've already addressed this. In fact it was one of the many arguments that were dropped, which I will outline for your convenience...

-- Dropped Arguments --

1. You do not have any "rights" on DDO. Juggle has specifically prohibited offensive comments, so you don't have the right to free speech in that capacity. While Juggle has no obligation to monitor disputes, it has apparently found it useful to do so regardless of whether or not members agree with this policy. If Juggle finds it appropriate to penalize members for violating the TOS, that's their prerogative and they should continue to do so if it is in accordance with their goals or values, which it apparently is. Period.

2. I've argued that it is in Juggle's best interest to protect the integrity of the site by ensuring it remains a relatively inviting and insightful community, rather than an unnecessarily rude and hostile one. This will help retain members and make DDO not only a more lucrative site but admirable one. Con never argued why DDO would be a better or more profitable place with permissible harassment. He suggests it might be more exciting, though I've negated that premise in R3.

3. If the overall consensus is that the community will benefit from moderation (which we know based on people complaining about the lack of moderators in the past), then it ought to be acknowledged that enforcing the rules as outlined via the TOS is the primary purpose of having moderators in the first place. Con never denied this and ignores the reality that the community begged for moderation and condemned Juggle when we didn't have it.

4. People who sign up for DDO have agreed to accept Juggle's decisions including those of appointed moderators. That means they should expect the TOS to be enforced. While sometimes it isn't, that is no reason to believe it shouldn't be as I explained in R4.

5. It is reasonable to assume that the decisions mods will continue to make in the future will not be absurd, unwarranted or excessive in scope. This is an important fact to consider and my opponent's R4 supports this notion.

6. Most importantly, we have absolutely no reason to believe that any and every post someone finds offensive will automatically be removed and/or the poster penalized. This is perhaps the most important contention in my favor; I'm not surprised Con dropped it.

-- Re: Arguments --

1. Con writes, "In supporting the... penalization for petty exchanges removes control of how the people on this website can express themselves." First, Con is poisoning the well in insinuating that the mods will penalize PETTY exchanges rather than potentially obscene ones. I've already explained why it is actually NOT likely that the mods will penalize petty exchanges in response to R4. Second, members don't have the right to express themselves freely, but only within the parameters set forth by Juggle. The TOS they agree to adhere to prohibits them from expressing themselves in a derogatory manner. Sorry.

2. Con says, "The responsibilty should not rest on the moderators to ensure the forums maintain a semblance of what is ultimately an abstraction." Mods exist to protect the integrity of the community, which is primarily maintained through upholding the TOS and reacting to warranted complaints about unnecessary personal attacks. That is exactly their responsibility.

3. Con suggests, "The nature of debate is opposition." The nature of debate is to attack an IDEA - not a person. Civility is paramount in debate. Most philosophy majors are required to take classes on how to respectfully disagree with someone. People sign up to debate their POV - not get made fun of. It may be inevitable, but then it may also be inevitably addressed.

4. Con says "This website has proven capable of moderating itself..." If that were the case, members wouldn't have begged for mods. Also consider the wildly divisive members who showed no indication of leaving on their own, such as izbo10 or askbob who has obsessed over being a member on DDO for 3+ years, and to this day is obsessed with returning. In fact he's still here incognito. Even if a FEW members are eventually driven away, they will inevitably be replaced with new harmful trolls or meanies who can be dealt with more expediently.
Ren

Con

Counterarguments

R1. We have every reason to believe...harass and antagonize other people.
C1.
My opponent has not presented any reason to believe that "Juggle's intention is profit [regarding the website Debate-dot-org]." My opponents allegation that their "intention" with Debate-dot-org is to profit from it, although she has presented no reason to believe this assertion. This therefore makes it a blind assertion until quantified. Even if their intention was to profit from it, we have no idea how they would intend to profit from it.


Let me give you an example. Say, they were selling content from this site to interested parties. Well, chances are, they would pick and choose what content they would use to sell, which would make commentary that could be considered "offensive" irrelevant.

On the other hand, let's say that their intent were to make money based on viewership. Well, the occasional controversial comment would likely garner more attention than a completely vanilla, edited, censored, and whitewashed discussion forum and debate medium. Whether the occasional sensitive member decides to leave would be wholly irrelevant.

R2. Nowhere did I ever imply that making money...hardly be considered a "harsh reaction."
C2.
There is an implication that members have some responsibility to bear the profitability of Debate-dot-org in mind, by stating that we should accept our commentary to be edited to meet standards that we're not entirely clear on, in support of a presumed profitability of the site. Moreover, as indicated in my previous arguments, the ToS is applied selectively as it is, and your reference to some sort of pedantically strict governance over the website doesn't exist. You're essentially referring to a contrivance.


R3. Con's point is that DDO would be boring without personal attacks...proves that harassment is a liability and not an asset to DDO.
C3. There is hate speech, offensive comments, obscenity, and personal attacks all over this website. There are entire threads committed to flaming and trolling, and named accordingly. Threads calling people out. Like so, in the Philosophy Forum:

Existentialism disproves Christianity
I'm cool because I'm a Nihilistic Solipsist
Hey, SomeonesName10!

Things just need to be kept under control, not regularly managed.

A great deal of the site -- a large proportion! Including the likes of RoyLatham, supported the premise that "white" people are literally more intelligent on average than "black" people. I considered that offensive, but that doens't mean that it required any disciplinary action.

So, where do we draw the line? Well, let's consider it in context. This is in response to WriterDave's thread, and his grievances are petty.

R4. Con points out that that mods enforce rules selectively...or considered out of the ordinary rude.
C4.
See, this is what I'm talking about. What is this "out of the ordinary rude?"


People are generally rude here.

The point about mods applying rules selectively is that, simply citing the ToS is obviously not substantive enough by precedent to incite mod interference.

R5. Con writes, "It is completely fallacious to have any sort of reactionary measures result from WriterDave's requests, which were made under the assumption that, at the very least, Juggle has a vested interest in what is ultimately the opinion of a single member, with a handful of supporters."

First of all, you're misusing the word fallacious.
C4.
Lolol, oh, really now? I was saying that it isn't logically consistent.


Let's see.

"It is completely logically inconsistent to have any sort of reactionary measures..."

Yep. Makes complete sense.

Let's check the defintion:

fallacious [fuh-ley-shuhs] Example Sentences Origin
fal·la·cious  [fuh-ley-shuhs] Show IPA


adjective

1.
Containing a fallacy; logically unsound: fallacious arguments.

Lol. Looks like I used the word perfectly.

However, the title of this debate, as written by you, is "Mods shoudl work to prevent and sanction personal attacks."

Out of respect (and personal affinity, I guess :3), I refrained hitheto to point out that it sounds funny, as the definition of sanction is as follows:

sanc·tion  [sangk-shuhn] Show IPA


noun

1.
authoritative permission or approval, as for an action.

2.
something that serves to support an action, condition, etc.
3.
something that gives binding force, as to an oath, rule ofconduct, etc.
4.
Law .
a.
a provision of a law enacting a penalty for disobedienceor a reward for obedience.
b.
the penalty or reward.
5.
International Law . action by one or more states toward another state calculated to force it to comply with legalobligations.

Which means that you completely misused the word.

Even if you were to assume the legal definition (and, why would you, this isn't a litigative argument, nor does it regard local or federal law), then just look at the way it's worded -- that would mean that (a) the ToS can contain a sanction, or (b) Mods can provide a sanction. One cannot "sanction," as some sort of verb, unless they are approving of something.

Shouldn'ta barked up that tree. ;)

Anyway, as I said before, we need to keep things in context, and WriterDave is certainly relevant to the argument, as your stance extends to his demands and grievances, as you've made clear in the forums. This is by a large what I have contention with, as his grievances were petty, and if we're saying that mods should take action for the little that happened, then I am fervently against it, as it removes a great deal of power from the membership at large and gives it to mods, most of whom we don't know at all.

Rebuttals

R1. First, Con is poisoning the well in insinuating that the mods will penalize PETTY exchanges rather than potentially obscene ones.

False. This is regarding petty exchanges. The entire context of this argument is regarding petty exchanges. Obscene is yet undefined.

Second, members don't have the right to express themselves freely

Yes, they do. As this is a public website, members here are free to express themselves as they please. The ToS only provides the rights Juggle has to respond to expression they consider "harmful," which, as I've previously indicated, is left undefined, and should not extend to petty exchanges.

R2. Mods exist to protect the integrity of the community

You pulled that definition from the air. Moderators are people who monitor "online chatroom and forums for bad language, inappropirate content, ect." http://dictionary.reference.com... other words, their purpose is to censor. The question, is to what degree. I am asserting that the degree to whcih you're proposing, which extends to an undefined, ubiquitous, and amorphous "personal attacks," which include petty exchanges, is outragous. Moreover, mods do not exist to uphold anyone's ideals, as you've indicated.

R3. Con suggests, "The nature of debate is opposition." The nature of debate is to attack an IDEA - not a person.

People define themselves through concepts. A discussion regarding said cocepts, as I've previously demonstrated regarding religion, can certainly result in conversations becoming personal, even if that wasn't initially intended.

R4. Con says "This website has proven capable of moderating itself..." If that were the case, members wouldn't have begged for mods.

I don't know anything about that, nor how it could possibly be substantiated, but extreme cases certainly need to be dealt with greater expediency that a soft, self-maintained approach, obviously. Izbo was subject to public outcry and Askbob broke the law. Both of them were extreme cases. Accordingly, they're irrelevant.
Debate Round No. 3
Danielle

Pro

-- Re: Rebuttal --

R1. Con says that we have no reason to believe that Juggle intends to profit from this site. False. Juggle has referenced its "investment" in DDO. The word investment implies an expected (profitable) return so his point is negated. Then Con says Juggle might intend to profit from selling DDO's content, making offensive content irrelevant. First, Juggle would not profit from selling offensive content, making all of the offensive content (and flame wars) irrelevant fluff to sort through that is time consuming (costly) and derogatory (harmful) to the quality and thereby reputation of the site. Second, I've proven that members tend to leave due to harassment, meaning less content generated produces less potential content to sell, also making offensive content harmful to potential profit. Therefore his argument is further negated.

R2. Nowhere is it inherently implied (nor did I ever suggest) that members were responsible for making DDO profit - only for adhering to the standards that Juggle sets (which I said were most likely in compliance to make them profit). While members certainly facilitate Juggle's motive for profit, the members have no specific obligations of what to do but only what NOT to do (post offensive content). Con then says that some of DDO's rules might be unclear, but that's exactly why Juggle has implemented moderators to make this determination. Furthermore, I'd like to note that Con has completely dismantled his own R1 argument in stating "There is an implication that members have some responsibility to bear the profitability of DDO," which completely contradicts his previous argument that we have no reason to believe Juggle intends to profit from the site.

R3. Con's point was that DDO would be boring without offensive material. I've proven harassment is a liability and not an asset to DDO which Con never challenged. He then writes, "Things just need to be kept under control, not regularly managed." Once again he has essentially already forfeited this debate considering "regularly managing" is the equivalent of active moderation, which includes preventing and sanctioning personal attacks. It's clear that Con is actually arguing in favor of my side.

Con then makes the predictable argument that we might not know where to draw the line since people are offended by various things. I've already addressed this several times over, and it's unfair and perhaps abusive that I have to waste more character space and time repeating myself. I pointed out that there is a pretty clear distinction between a general opinion based on race, and a personal attack based on race (for example). Regardless, once again the members' opinion here is completely irrelevant. There is no such thing as the right to not be offended and you very well might be. However it is up to JUGGLE and the people Juggle appoints to mod (since they own the site) to make the determination between acceptable and unacceptable content. If I post "My favorite color is purple" and the mod deletes that comment, that is too bad because I have NO RIGHTS on Juggle. I am utilizing this free service at my own discretion and therefore accept whatever parameters Juggle chooses to implement.

R4. Con completely dropped my R4 contention. I will once again waste more character space c/p it: Con points out that that mods enforce rules selectively. I'm arguing why they should continue to enforce them. This is not an argument in favor of why they should not enforce them, making this a completely useless contention. If anything it supports my notion that mod interference in punishing offenders is/will be minimal and subject only to the comments that have been reported as insulting to particular member(s), or considered out of the ordinary rude.

R5. I'll address Con's misuse of the word fallacious in the comments section. For now note that Con avoided the point here which is that Juggle clearly has a vested interest in maintaining a specific harassment-free environment, as evidenced once again by the TOS and commentary made by Juggle employees and representatives who have clarified this many times.

-- Re: Dropped Arguments --

1. Con says "As this is a public website, members here are free to express themselves as they please. The ToS only provides the rights Juggle has to respond to expression they consider 'harmful, which, as I've previously indicated, is left undefined, and should not extend to petty exchanges." DDO is a public website that is privately owned and operated. Here Con's argument illustrates my point: that Juggle has the right to remove content that JUGGLE (not the members here) feel is harmful, therefore the resolution is upheld.

2. Con never argued why DDO would be a better or more profitable place with permissible harassment, not that his opinion matters anyway because only Juggle's does (and we know their opinion; see TOS). Note: It is too late for him to respond to this dropped argument.

3. If the overall consensus is that the community will benefit from moderation (which we know based on people complaining about the lack of moderators in the past), then it ought to be acknowledged that enforcing the rules as outlined via the TOS is the primary purpose of having moderators in the first place. Con never denied this and ignores the reality that the community begged for moderation and condemned Juggle when we didn't have it. Note: It is too late for him to respond to this dropped argument.

4. People who sign up for DDO have agreed to accept Juggle's decisions including those of appointed moderators. Note: It is too late for Con to respond to this dropped argument.

5. It is reasonable to assume that the decisions mods will continue to make in the future will not be absurd, unwarranted or excessive in scope. Note: It is too late for Con to respond to this dropped argument.

6. We have no reason to believe that any and every post someone finds offensive will automatically be removed and/or the poster penalized. Note: Is it too late for Con to respond to this dropped argument.

-- Re: Arguments --

1. See Point 1 of Dropped Arguments. It's essentially the same thing about members' limited free speech "rights" here.

2. Con reiterates the fact that the sole purpose of moderators are to censor forums. However he asks "to what degree" they should be censored. I've explained innumerable times why only Juggle (and their appointed moderators') opinion matters; however, I've also made some good arguments as to why personal attacks ought to be censored. This upholds the resolution - not argues against it.

3. I've argued that the nature of debate is to attack an IDEA - not a person. Con says people define themselves through concepts, but I don't see how that justifies personal attacks. Saying "Republicans are stupid" is different than "Republican ideals are stupid." Regardless, I've already implied that there is a reasonable standard of civility and that most people are competent to notice the distinction between a legitimate disagreement based on concepts or attacking someone based on certain concepts. This is really a very flimsy rebuttal on Con's part.

4. Con says "This website has proven capable of moderating itself..." I pointed out that if that were true, members wouldn't have begged for mods. Also there are wildly divisive members who showed no indication of leaving on their own, such as izbo10 or askbob. Even if some "negative" members are eventually driven away, not without first harming the site, and also they will inevitably be replaced with new harmful trolls or meanies who can be dealt with more expediently by mods. Con responded, "Extreme cases certainly need to be dealt with... Izbo was subject to public outcry and Askbob broke the law." People who run Juggle (like Julia and the former owner Phil) qualify as moderators responding to these extreme cases. The current moderator, innomen, was heavily involved in the izbo case.
Ren

Con


Fatal Blows to R1, R2, DA1, DA2, DA3, DA4, DA5, DA6, and A1

FB1. Profitability of this website is irrelevant to its members, unless they are shareholders, stockholders, or employees. To suggest otherwise is tantamount to suggesting that we are also responsible for the profitability of our internet services and computer manufacturers that also made interaction on this website possible. However, Juggle makes it expressedly clear in its Terms of Use that it is likewise, not responsible for the material presented on this webite:

"Juggle SHALL NOT BE LIABLE FOR CONTENT UPLOADED BY MEMBERS OR USERS, OR FOR THE DEFAMATORY, OFFENSIVE, OR ILLEGAL CONDUCT OF ANY MEMBER, USER, OR OTHER THIRD-PARTY, AND YOU BEAR THE ENTIRE RISK OF DAMAGE OR HARM FROM THE FOREGOING."

FB2. Moreover, Juggle has foregone any responsibility or interest in intervening in member disputes, as stated in the Terms of Use:

"You are solely responsible for your interaction with other Debate.org Members or users, whether online or offline. Juggle reserves the right, but has no obligation, to monitor disputes between you and other Members or users. If you have a dispute with one or more Members or users, you release Debate.org and Juggle (and our officers, directors, agents, employees, subsidiaries, and affiliates) from claims, demands, and damages (actual and consequential) of every kind and nature, known and unknown, arising out of or in any way connected with such dispute."

FB3. This debate regards personal attacks, not simply "offensive speech." However, in terms of behavioral regulations set in the Terms of Use, such personal attacks include attacks on one's opinions:

"
  1. Will follow the following rules while participating on the site. Any disregard for these rules or any of the other terms or guidelines may result in termination of a member's account.
    1. No use of profanities or swear words.
    2. No personal attacks against other members or a member's opinions.
Accordingly, if one is to do away with personal attacks, they must also do away with attacks on opinion as well, which would essentially dissolve the entire debate aspect of this site.


Conclusions

Clearly, an increase in moderation is unnecessary, as you've evidenced in your arguments that hitherto, problems have been dealt with as needed. Given this dispute suggests that further action than what is already applied is necessary, the resolution has been met. Personal attacks should not receive greater attention.
Debate Round No. 4
5 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 5 records.
Posted by MouthWash 4 years ago
MouthWash
How ironic in the light of recent events. ;)
Posted by Callen13 5 years ago
Callen13
Some people get on websites like this to practice debating. Personal attacks are going to happen in actual debates. People should get practice being personally attacked, especially if they are debating on this site for a class or course.
Posted by Grape 5 years ago
Grape
Sanction, verb - give official permission or approval for (an action).
Posted by phantom 5 years ago
phantom
I think Innomen is the only active mod but there are a few others from juggle.
Posted by Cobo 5 years ago
Cobo
How many mods do we actually have? Or is it just innomen?
5 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 5 records.
Vote Placed by 1dustpelt 5 years ago
1dustpelt
DanielleRenTied
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: What kind of RFD was that InoVinoVeritas?
Vote Placed by InVinoVeritas 5 years ago
InVinoVeritas
DanielleRenTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Danielle's arguments stood.
Vote Placed by RoyLatham 5 years ago
RoyLatham
DanielleRenTied
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Reasons for voting decision: It is in the member's interest to want to make the site successful. That follows from members voluntarily participating. Pro's points follow logically.
Vote Placed by royalpaladin 5 years ago
royalpaladin
DanielleRenTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Ren dropped a bunch of significant arguments until the very last round, so I have to disregard his final piece of evidence based on standard debate rules. Even if we include it, however, it still fails because Juggle reserves the right to moderate (i.e. it has not stated that it will not do it), and this debate was about whether or not it should exercise that right through moderation. Danielle's profitabliity analysis wins the round.
Vote Placed by WriterDave 5 years ago
WriterDave
DanielleRenTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Ren dropped all of his arguments but attempted to raise entirely new arguments in the final round, which is both improper and cannot address arguments dropped previous to that round. Moreover, those "fatal blows" do not meet prima facie standards; profitability is a contributing factor for the existence of any site, and Juggle clearly reserves the right to intervene in member disputes.