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Inconsistency in Moderation

wrichcirw
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5/25/2014 3:58:21 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
Site policy is clear:

At 3/29/2014 4:27:53 PM, airmax1227 wrote:
This is where, outside the context of a discussion on the topic or of behavior in the course of that discussion, someone posts something negative about a specific member. Generalized complaints about generalized behaviors are not direct attacks. But, for example, a thread specifically calling out a member by name, and speaking negatively about them, is a direct attack. Attack threads will be deleted out of hand.
http://www.debate.org...

Yet, this debate has been allowed to stand:

http://www.debate.org...

Regardless of your opinion of jifpop, or your opinion as to whether or not he should have been banned, the debate clearly attacks him by arguing that his ban was justified, and that his conduct was poor.

---

This thread has also been allowed to stand:

http://www.debate.org...

Again, regardless of your opinion of jifpop, the OP of the thread clearly calls him out as a liar:

At 5/24/2014 3:13:19 AM, Mikal wrote:
If you took the time to read this or even care , thanks. I just hate lies, especially ones that happen in this type of way.

The thread that resulted in Mikal making his own thread has been deleted, more than likely justifiably so. If that thread was deleted, so should this one for the same reasons. If mikal is concerned about blowback from the short amount of time that the deleted thread was allowed to remain, so should Jifpop be afforded that same concern.

The policy is clear that it does not discriminate between warranted and unwarranted accusations in respect to "attack threads" and that they will be deleted "out of hand". This stands in contrast to "generalized complaints about generalized behaviors", which is not a valid description for either the debate or the thread in question, nor is it from what I understand a valid description of the thread that has already been deleted.

This isn't about what is "popular", this is about staying consistent with the rules that we've all agreed to abide by. Either delete the debate and the thread, or change the policy to have it remain consistent with moderator intentions.

If neither action is taken, it can only be assumed that moderators have no intention of following their own policy, which then takes us all back to square one, i.e. this site does not have a valid policy on personal attacks.

Discuss.
At 8/9/2013 9:41:24 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
If you are civil with me, I will be civil to you. If you decide to bring unreasonable animosity to bear in a reasonable discussion, then what would you expect other than to get flustered?
NiqashMotawadi3
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5/25/2014 5:21:23 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
To clarify things, I don't think Mikal's thread should be deleted, but Wrich's argument is that from the moderation team's perspective (which I don't agree with and I'm not sure if he does), such thread should have been deleted, and therefore the moderation team is being inconsistent in not deleting it, independently of what someone who is already against the moderation policy might argue in defense of Mikal's thread. This argument is only to show that the moderation team are being inconsistent from their perspective, rules and previous practices, and that is something I second after picking up this pattern not long ago.

But, for example, a thread specifically calling out a member by name, and speaking negatively about them, is a direct attack. Attack threads will be deleted out of hand.

Being negative about someone is not necessarily a personal insult. Airmax said that at the time because the plan was to get rid of the likes of ADOL who weren't insulting a particular someone, but creating negative threads about him that accused him of harassment and ToS violations. I'm sure Airmax would not follow his own words when it comes to his clique of friends for political considerations, mainly. Moderation is definitely friend-based and inconsistent. It's all politics, really.
baus
Posts: 92
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5/25/2014 5:34:56 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
So, according to you, if we make a debate about whether Justin Bieber's arrest was right or not, we are personally attacking him.
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wrichcirw
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5/25/2014 5:37:25 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 5/25/2014 5:21:23 AM, NiqashMotawadi3 wrote:
To clarify things, I don't think Mikal's thread should be deleted, but Wrich's argument is that from the moderation team's perspective (which I don't agree with and I'm not sure if he does), such thread should have been deleted, and therefore the moderation team is being inconsistent in not deleting it, independently of what someone who is already against the moderation policy might argue in defense of Mikal's thread. This argument is only to show that the moderation team are being inconsistent from their perspective, rules and previous practices, and that is something I second after picking up this pattern not long ago.

This is my exact argument. Thank you for acknowledging it.

But, for example, a thread specifically calling out a member by name, and speaking negatively about them, is a direct attack. Attack threads will be deleted out of hand.

Being negative about someone is not necessarily a personal insult. Airmax said that at the time because the plan was to get rid of the likes of ADOL who weren't insulting a particular someone, but creating negative threads about him that accused him of harassment and ToS violations. I'm sure Airmax would not follow his own words when it comes to his clique of friends for political considerations, mainly. Moderation is definitely friend-based and inconsistent. It's all politics, really.

It's not clear what difference there is in your changing the terminology from "personal attack" to "personal insult". A personal attack can be constructive criticism, and I think the policy is clear enough that those are warranted, as long as the title of a thread is not indicative of a "direct attack". I take this to mean that it's OK to offer criticism of a person's propensity for a certain form of behavior within the confines of a thread not set up for the purpose of doing so. I'm not sure why such a distinction is made in the policy.

A personal insult on the other hand does not seek to offer such constructive criticism I would think...the intent would only be to demean the target.

I think if we acknowledge this difference, and change site policy to prohibit personal insults while allowing for personal attacks, that may ameliorate this situation. Perhaps this is the optimal solution. It would probably require a change in the TOS itself, which specifically uses the terminology "personal attacks" without defining exactly what that is. I think the site policy was a step in the right direction in attempting to illustrate what a "personal attack" would entail, but in the end, perhaps what it ended up doing is to highlight that such a phrase was inappropriate in the TOS to begin with.
At 8/9/2013 9:41:24 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
If you are civil with me, I will be civil to you. If you decide to bring unreasonable animosity to bear in a reasonable discussion, then what would you expect other than to get flustered?
wrichcirw
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5/25/2014 5:37:44 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 5/25/2014 5:34:56 AM, baus wrote:
So, according to you, if we make a debate about whether Justin Bieber's arrest was right or not, we are personally attacking him.

Justin Bieber is not a member of DDO.
At 8/9/2013 9:41:24 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
If you are civil with me, I will be civil to you. If you decide to bring unreasonable animosity to bear in a reasonable discussion, then what would you expect other than to get flustered?
NiqashMotawadi3
Posts: 1,895
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5/25/2014 5:39:17 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
I think if we acknowledge this difference, and change site policy to prohibit personal insults while allowing for personal attacks, that may ameliorate this situation. Perhaps this is the optimal solution. It would probably require a change in the TOS itself, which specifically uses the terminology "personal attacks" without defining exactly what that is. I think the site policy was a step in the right direction in attempting to illustrate what a "personal attack" would entail, but in the end, perhaps what it ended up doing is to highlight that such a phrase was inappropriate in the TOS to begin with.

Yes, I fully agree with your optimal solution proposal.
baus
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5/25/2014 6:09:41 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 5/25/2014 5:37:44 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 5/25/2014 5:34:56 AM, baus wrote:
So, according to you, if we make a debate about whether Justin Bieber's arrest was right or not, we are personally attacking him.

Justin Bieber is not a member of DDO.

A banned user is no longer a member of DDO, that's why they get wiped off the leaderboards.
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wrichcirw
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5/25/2014 6:14:21 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 5/25/2014 6:09:41 AM, baus wrote:
At 5/25/2014 5:37:44 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 5/25/2014 5:34:56 AM, baus wrote:
So, according to you, if we make a debate about whether Justin Bieber's arrest was right or not, we are personally attacking him.

Justin Bieber is not a member of DDO.

A banned user is no longer a member of DDO, that's why they get wiped off the leaderboards.

Justin Bieber was not ever on DDO, yes? So, he's not covered under DDO's conduct policy.
At 8/9/2013 9:41:24 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
If you are civil with me, I will be civil to you. If you decide to bring unreasonable animosity to bear in a reasonable discussion, then what would you expect other than to get flustered?
baus
Posts: 92
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5/25/2014 6:30:27 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 5/25/2014 6:14:21 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 5/25/2014 6:09:41 AM, baus wrote:
At 5/25/2014 5:37:44 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 5/25/2014 5:34:56 AM, baus wrote:
So, according to you, if we make a debate about whether Justin Bieber's arrest was right or not, we are personally attacking him.

Justin Bieber is not a member of DDO.

A banned user is no longer a member of DDO, that's why they get wiped off the leaderboards.

Justin Bieber was not ever on DDO, yes? So, he's not covered under DDO's conduct policy.

Neither are banned users.
Without death, life has no meaning.

Without life, death has no significance.
wrichcirw
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5/25/2014 6:34:03 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 5/25/2014 6:30:27 AM, baus wrote:
At 5/25/2014 6:14:21 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 5/25/2014 6:09:41 AM, baus wrote:
At 5/25/2014 5:37:44 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 5/25/2014 5:34:56 AM, baus wrote:
So, according to you, if we make a debate about whether Justin Bieber's arrest was right or not, we are personally attacking him.

Justin Bieber is not a member of DDO.

A banned user is no longer a member of DDO, that's why they get wiped off the leaderboards.

Justin Bieber was not ever on DDO, yes? So, he's not covered under DDO's conduct policy.

Neither are banned users.

So, according to your argument, anyone who was permanently banned is ripe for personal attacks. Fair enough...but that doesn't apply to this situation.
At 8/9/2013 9:41:24 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
If you are civil with me, I will be civil to you. If you decide to bring unreasonable animosity to bear in a reasonable discussion, then what would you expect other than to get flustered?
baus
Posts: 92
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5/25/2014 6:36:00 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 5/25/2014 6:34:03 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 5/25/2014 6:30:27 AM, baus wrote:
At 5/25/2014 6:14:21 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 5/25/2014 6:09:41 AM, baus wrote:
At 5/25/2014 5:37:44 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 5/25/2014 5:34:56 AM, baus wrote:
So, according to you, if we make a debate about whether Justin Bieber's arrest was right or not, we are personally attacking him.

Justin Bieber is not a member of DDO.

A banned user is no longer a member of DDO, that's why they get wiped off the leaderboards.

Justin Bieber was not ever on DDO, yes? So, he's not covered under DDO's conduct policy.

Neither are banned users.

So, according to your argument, anyone who was permanently banned is ripe for personal attacks. Fair enough...but that doesn't apply to this situation.

A (permanently) banned user has violated the ToS, thus the ToS no longer apply to protect them.

A temp banned user, however, may receive protection from personal attacks for they shall be returning in a reformed manner.
Without death, life has no meaning.

Without life, death has no significance.
wrichcirw
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5/25/2014 6:37:06 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 5/25/2014 6:36:00 AM, baus wrote:
At 5/25/2014 6:34:03 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 5/25/2014 6:30:27 AM, baus wrote:
At 5/25/2014 6:14:21 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 5/25/2014 6:09:41 AM, baus wrote:
At 5/25/2014 5:37:44 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 5/25/2014 5:34:56 AM, baus wrote:
So, according to you, if we make a debate about whether Justin Bieber's arrest was right or not, we are personally attacking him.

Justin Bieber is not a member of DDO.

A banned user is no longer a member of DDO, that's why they get wiped off the leaderboards.

Justin Bieber was not ever on DDO, yes? So, he's not covered under DDO's conduct policy.

Neither are banned users.

So, according to your argument, anyone who was permanently banned is ripe for personal attacks. Fair enough...but that doesn't apply to this situation.

A (permanently) banned user has violated the ToS, thus the ToS no longer apply to protect them.

A temp banned user, however, may receive protection from personal attacks for they shall be returning in a reformed manner.

Your point? Jifpop is currently a DDO user, under a different name. He had the choice of keeping his old name.
At 8/9/2013 9:41:24 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
If you are civil with me, I will be civil to you. If you decide to bring unreasonable animosity to bear in a reasonable discussion, then what would you expect other than to get flustered?
baus
Posts: 92
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5/25/2014 6:41:01 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 5/25/2014 6:37:06 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 5/25/2014 6:36:00 AM, baus wrote:
At 5/25/2014 6:34:03 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 5/25/2014 6:30:27 AM, baus wrote:
At 5/25/2014 6:14:21 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 5/25/2014 6:09:41 AM, baus wrote:
At 5/25/2014 5:37:44 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 5/25/2014 5:34:56 AM, baus wrote:
So, according to you, if we make a debate about whether Justin Bieber's arrest was right or not, we are personally attacking him.

Justin Bieber is not a member of DDO.

A banned user is no longer a member of DDO, that's why they get wiped off the leaderboards.

Justin Bieber was not ever on DDO, yes? So, he's not covered under DDO's conduct policy.

Neither are banned users.

So, according to your argument, anyone who was permanently banned is ripe for personal attacks. Fair enough...but that doesn't apply to this situation.

A (permanently) banned user has violated the ToS, thus the ToS no longer apply to protect them.

A temp banned user, however, may receive protection from personal attacks for they shall be returning in a reformed manner.

Your point? Jifpop is currently a DDO user, under a different name. He had the choice of keeping his old name.

You can keep whining about this or just move on. The choice it yours to make.
Without death, life has no meaning.

Without life, death has no significance.
wrichcirw
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5/25/2014 6:41:43 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 5/25/2014 6:41:01 AM, baus wrote:
At 5/25/2014 6:37:06 AM, wrichcirw wrote:

You can keep whining about this or just move on. The choice it yours to make.

Now that was just inappropriate. Troll elsewhere please.
At 8/9/2013 9:41:24 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
If you are civil with me, I will be civil to you. If you decide to bring unreasonable animosity to bear in a reasonable discussion, then what would you expect other than to get flustered?
baus
Posts: 92
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5/25/2014 6:48:58 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 5/25/2014 6:41:43 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 5/25/2014 6:41:01 AM, baus wrote:
At 5/25/2014 6:37:06 AM, wrichcirw wrote:

You can keep whining about this or just move on. The choice it yours to make.

Now that was just inappropriate. Troll elsewhere please.

http://img2.wikia.nocookie.net...
Without death, life has no meaning.

Without life, death has no significance.
wrichcirw
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5/25/2014 6:50:02 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 5/25/2014 6:48:58 AM, baus wrote:
At 5/25/2014 6:41:43 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 5/25/2014 6:41:01 AM, baus wrote:
At 5/25/2014 6:37:06 AM, wrichcirw wrote:

You can keep whining about this or just move on. The choice it yours to make.

Now that was just inappropriate. Troll elsewhere please.

http://img2.wikia.nocookie.net...

Keep it coming. Make this easy for you, please.
At 8/9/2013 9:41:24 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
If you are civil with me, I will be civil to you. If you decide to bring unreasonable animosity to bear in a reasonable discussion, then what would you expect other than to get flustered?
Ore_Ele
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5/25/2014 7:52:37 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
Speaking negatively =/= pointing out inconsistencies or false statements.
"Wanting Red Rhino Pill to have gender"
wrichcirw
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5/26/2014 12:03:01 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 5/25/2014 7:52:37 PM, Ore_Ele wrote:
Speaking negatively =/= pointing out inconsistencies or false statements.

What is your argument, and how is it relevant to the OP?
At 8/9/2013 9:41:24 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
If you are civil with me, I will be civil to you. If you decide to bring unreasonable animosity to bear in a reasonable discussion, then what would you expect other than to get flustered?
bsh1
Posts: 27,504
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5/26/2014 1:03:22 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
I wonder about the spirit of this policy.

If you violate the TOS, that is a factual observation. It is verifiable. Is it a personal attack then for me to say, Person X violated TOS, when I am simply stating a fact?

Frankly, I think this policy is geared more towards defamation and libel than anything else. False or unsubstantiated allegations designed to negatively portray a member of this community are personal attacks, but I find it a hard sell to say that pointing out facts are personal attacks.
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Mikal
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5/26/2014 4:01:28 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
Just some clarifications

(a) justin bieber def has a DDO account - http://www.debate.org...

(b) Attacking someones action and making a statement about the action is not a personal attack. If I stated jifpop lied, that is not attacking him but attacking the actions that he chose to make. Where as this is entirely subjective because any statement could indirectly be conceived as breaking the site policy in some manner. I could say that jif is a baboon. That is a statement. Calling him an animal may be either a (a) negative thing, or (b) non negative thing. Anything that falls under non negative is permissible. Where as that is subjective to moderation.

I think the entire policy has to do with the spirit of the intent behind statements. If you say something and intend for it to be negative, its noticeable.

Granted you worry about stuff to bloody much. This happened days ago and its obviously not coming down, nor will posting 8 threads about it accomplish anything besides clogging the forums with the same stuff. Go get laid or smoke a joke and put a smile on your face.
YYW
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5/26/2014 9:50:16 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 5/26/2014 4:01:28 AM, Mikal wrote:
Just some clarifications

(a) justin bieber def has a DDO account - http://www.debate.org...

lol

I think the entire policy has to do with the spirit of the intent behind statements. If you say something and intend for it to be negative, its noticeable.

Assuming intent is a tough thing to get right, when the meaning's not clear -but facts are not insults. You stated facts in your debate, so you didn't insult jif. Everyone who is capable of understanding that, including the moderators, understands that. Others may have different opinions, and that is what it is. There really isn't much more to say than has already been said.
Tsar of DDO
wrichcirw
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5/28/2014 9:28:03 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 5/26/2014 1:03:22 AM, bsh1 wrote:
I wonder about the spirit of this policy.

If you violate the TOS, that is a factual observation. It is verifiable. Is it a personal attack then for me to say, Person X violated TOS, when I am simply stating a fact?

Let's make this more tangible to explore the logic.

If someone broke the law by breaking someone else's arm, both the actual act of breaking the arm and going about proving that such a thing occurred are both personal attacks: 1) the perpetrator attacking the victim, and 2) the "prosecutor" attacking the perpetrator with facts that ostensibly establish the perpetrator's guilt.

That #2 is justifiable and not #1 is irrelevant to the fact that both are "personal attacks".

Current site policy does make this distinction and allows for #2 to occur with the exception of "attack threads", i.e. threads that have the specific purpose of attacking another member, justifiable or not.

These "attack threads", according to site policy, will be deleted "out of hand"...however moderation has been evidently inconsistent in doing so.

Frankly, I think this policy is geared more towards defamation and libel than anything else. False or unsubstantiated allegations designed to negatively portray a member of this community are personal attacks, but I find it a hard sell to say that pointing out facts are personal attacks.

This part I do agree with, sans the underlined.
At 8/9/2013 9:41:24 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
If you are civil with me, I will be civil to you. If you decide to bring unreasonable animosity to bear in a reasonable discussion, then what would you expect other than to get flustered?
wrichcirw
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5/28/2014 9:35:56 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 5/26/2014 4:01:28 AM, Mikal wrote:
Just some clarifications

(a) justin bieber def has a DDO account - http://www.debate.org...

Do you really need an explanation for why your assertion simply isn't true?

(b) Attacking someones action and making a statement about the action is not a personal attack. If I stated jifpop lied, that is not attacking him but attacking the actions that he chose to make.

If you were truly doing this, you would attack "lying", not "Jifpop lying".

Where as this is entirely subjective because any statement could indirectly be conceived as breaking the site policy in some manner. I could say that jif is a baboon. That is a statement. Calling him an animal may be either a (a) negative thing, or (b) non negative thing. Anything that falls under non negative is permissible. Where as that is subjective to moderation.

Please quote site policy that actually substantiates your assertion.

I think the entire policy has to do with the spirit of the intent behind statements. If you say something and intend for it to be negative, its noticeable.

Constructive criticism is all negative. Criticism of any sort is negative. Anyone taking a CON position on any resolution is being "negative". That's not a valid reason to prohibit anyone from stating such a position.

The TOS states "personal attacks", and the logic in this thread has so far concluded that this is probably not exacting enough, that what's more subject to a ban are statements that only intend to demean a person without offering anything constructive.

Granted you worry about stuff to bloody much. This happened days ago and its obviously not coming down, nor will posting 8 threads about it accomplish anything besides clogging the forums with the same stuff. Go get laid or smoke a joke and put a smile on your face.

The idea is that if this happens once, it will happen again, and better to engage in preventative measures now than to wait until things get so FUBAR that everyone wonders how it got so bad.
At 8/9/2013 9:41:24 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
If you are civil with me, I will be civil to you. If you decide to bring unreasonable animosity to bear in a reasonable discussion, then what would you expect other than to get flustered?
bsh1
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5/28/2014 8:19:40 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 5/28/2014 9:28:03 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 5/26/2014 1:03:22 AM, bsh1 wrote:
I wonder about the spirit of this policy.

If you violate the TOS, that is a factual observation. It is verifiable. Is it a personal attack then for me to say, Person X violated TOS, when I am simply stating a fact?

Let's make this more tangible to explore the logic.

If someone broke the law by breaking someone else's arm, both the actual act of breaking the arm and going about proving that such a thing occurred are both personal attacks: 1) the perpetrator attacking the victim, and 2) the "prosecutor" attacking the perpetrator with facts that ostensibly establish the perpetrator's guilt.

That #2 is justifiable and not #1 is irrelevant to the fact that both are "personal attacks".

Current site policy does make this distinction and allows for #2 to occur with the exception of "attack threads", i.e. threads that have the specific purpose of attacking another member, justifiable or not.

These "attack threads", according to site policy, will be deleted "out of hand"...however moderation has been evidently inconsistent in doing so.

Frankly, that seems more a semantic quibble than a worthwhile argument.

Let's take a look at the following example:

Let's say that X is an unflattering feature that is objectively verifiable (e.g. being overweight, having below average intelligence, doing poorly on a test, etc.)

Now, to say, "You are X" is not necessarily a personal attack. Making an objective observation is not the same thing as attacking them. To conflate the two is to misunderstand the nature of an attack. Attack can be defined as "to set upon in a forceful, violent, hostile, or aggressive way;" this can be done just as much physically and verbally.

The word, "attack" inherently involves aggression or hostility that objective observations don't. When a teacher tells you that "you did poorly on your test" they are not assailing or deriding you, but rather making an observation or informing you. There is a clear distinction.

What Mikal did, for the most part, was make a series of objective observations (re: Jif's violations of TOS) to draw a conclusion, i.e. that his ban was justifiable. Defending the premise "the ban was justifiable" is not--per se--a personal attack either, because it attempts to use objective criteria to arrive at some objective conclusion. To say, "Jif deserved the ban" is different, in that "deserved" implies both a degree of malice or animus as well as partiality and bias.
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wrichcirw
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5/28/2014 8:51:49 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 5/28/2014 8:19:40 PM, bsh1 wrote:
At 5/28/2014 9:28:03 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 5/26/2014 1:03:22 AM, bsh1 wrote:
I wonder about the spirit of this policy.

If you violate the TOS, that is a factual observation. It is verifiable. Is it a personal attack then for me to say, Person X violated TOS, when I am simply stating a fact?

Let's make this more tangible to explore the logic.

If someone broke the law by breaking someone else's arm, both the actual act of breaking the arm and going about proving that such a thing occurred are both personal attacks: 1) the perpetrator attacking the victim, and 2) the "prosecutor" attacking the perpetrator with facts that ostensibly establish the perpetrator's guilt.

That #2 is justifiable and not #1 is irrelevant to the fact that both are "personal attacks".

Current site policy does make this distinction and allows for #2 to occur with the exception of "attack threads", i.e. threads that have the specific purpose of attacking another member, justifiable or not.

These "attack threads", according to site policy, will be deleted "out of hand"...however moderation has been evidently inconsistent in doing so.

Frankly, that seems more a semantic quibble than a worthwhile argument.

All arguments are semantics. If you think it's not worthwhile to argue over, then perhaps you should not have posted on this thread.

Let's take a look at the following example:

Let's say that X is an unflattering feature that is objectively verifiable (e.g. being overweight, having below average intelligence, doing poorly on a test, etc.)

Now, to say, "You are X" is not necessarily a personal attack. Making an objective observation is not the same thing as attacking them. To conflate the two is to misunderstand the nature of an attack. Attack can be defined as "to set upon in a forceful, violent, hostile, or aggressive way;" this can be done just as much physically and verbally.

The word, "attack" inherently involves aggression or hostility that objective observations don't. When a teacher tells you that "you did poorly on your test" they are not assailing or deriding you, but rather making an observation or informing you. There is a clear distinction.

You attempt to engage in a semantics argument without even looking up the word in question. One of the definitions of "attack", indeed the most pertinent to this discussion:

"to assail with unfriendly or bitter words"
http://www.merriam-webster.com...

Calling someone overweight, or calling them out on a bad grade publicly, is generally unfriendly. Personal criticism of any sort is generally unfriendly, which is why most people stick to impersonal criticism of arguments on this website.

What Mikal did, for the most part, was make a series of objective observations (re: Jif's violations of TOS) to draw a conclusion, i.e. that his ban was justifiable. Defending the premise "the ban was justifiable" is not--per se--a personal attack either, because it attempts to use objective criteria to arrive at some objective conclusion.

What you consider to be objective is unfortunately subjective. It involves how you interpret violations of the TOS to have occurred. Many people may share your interpretation, but that does not make your interpretation objective by any means.

To say, "Jif deserved the ban" is different, in that "deserved" implies both a degree of malice or animus as well as partiality and bias.

No, not really. You can say that you deserved all of the benefits to have come from your hard work. It does not necessitate malice. Neither does "justify". As it is, the context of the matter, the fact that someone deserved a ban on this website, is certainly negative, critical, and thus unfriendly.
At 8/9/2013 9:41:24 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
If you are civil with me, I will be civil to you. If you decide to bring unreasonable animosity to bear in a reasonable discussion, then what would you expect other than to get flustered?
wrichcirw
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5/28/2014 8:53:15 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 5/28/2014 1:29:15 PM, Zaradi wrote:
Wrich, you're wrong because x, y, and z.

Did I just insult you?

No you did not.

If that's all you had to say, good day.
At 8/9/2013 9:41:24 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
If you are civil with me, I will be civil to you. If you decide to bring unreasonable animosity to bear in a reasonable discussion, then what would you expect other than to get flustered?
wrichcirw
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5/28/2014 8:53:55 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 5/28/2014 12:11:06 PM, TheGreatAndPowerful wrote:
It's two people with no oversight. What do you expect?

Thank you for succinctly pointing out the main issue.
At 8/9/2013 9:41:24 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
If you are civil with me, I will be civil to you. If you decide to bring unreasonable animosity to bear in a reasonable discussion, then what would you expect other than to get flustered?
bsh1
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5/28/2014 9:21:43 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 5/28/2014 8:51:49 PM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 5/28/2014 8:19:40 PM, bsh1 wrote:
At 5/28/2014 9:28:03 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 5/26/2014 1:03:22 AM, bsh1 wrote:
I wonder about the spirit of this policy.

Let's take a look at the following example:

Let's say that X is an unflattering feature that is objectively verifiable (e.g. being overweight, having below average intelligence, doing poorly on a test, etc.)

Now, to say, "You are X" is not necessarily a personal attack. Making an objective observation is not the same thing as attacking them. To conflate the two is to misunderstand the nature of an attack. Attack can be defined as "to set upon in a forceful, violent, hostile, or aggressive way;" this can be done just as much physically and verbally.

The word, "attack" inherently involves aggression or hostility that objective observations don't. When a teacher tells you that "you did poorly on your test" they are not assailing or deriding you, but rather making an observation or informing you. There is a clear distinction.

You attempt to engage in a semantics argument without even looking up the word in question. One of the definitions of "attack", indeed the most pertinent to this discussion:

You'll find, if you read my points more closely, that I did look up the word in question, and defined it as such: "set upon in a forceful, violent, hostile, or aggressive way."

"to assail with unfriendly or bitter words"
http://www.merriam-webster.com...

For the sake of semantics--as that seems to be the type of discussion we're having--let's define "unfriendly." It means "hostile" or "not showing kind or friendly feelings."
http://www.merriam-webster.com...

This, as well as my definition, brings us back to the idea of "hostility." I would underscore at this time that stating a fact is not necessarily hostile. It can be hostile, but it does not have to be hostile.

Calling someone overweight, or calling them out on a bad grade publicly, is generally unfriendly. Personal criticism of any sort is generally unfriendly, which is why most people stick to impersonal criticism of arguments on this website.

I agree, personal criticism is generally unfriendly, but you're using a loaded term. Objective fact is not necessarily "criticism," so to equate the two things is already drawing false parallels. Simply because the fact is unflattering does not mean that referencing it is "hostile."

What Mikal did, for the most part, was make a series of objective observations (re: Jif's violations of TOS) to draw a conclusion, i.e. that his ban was justifiable. Defending the premise "the ban was justifiable" is not--per se--a personal attack either, because it attempts to use objective criteria to arrive at some objective conclusion.

What you consider to be objective is unfortunately subjective.

We can objectively say that Jif violated TOS. That much seems clear.

It involves how you interpret violations of the TOS to have occurred. Many people may share your interpretation, but that does not make your interpretation objective by any means.

Very well. Let's talk about interpretation for a moment.

Your whole point in generating this thread, as I understand it, was to discuss (and perhaps reach the root) of the perceived inconsistencies in mod action. If this assumption is correct, then it seems logical that we can "/thread" here.

When we talk about personal attacks, it seems that were are also talking about hostility. Hostility is an attitude--a subjective quality rather than objective fact. As you just assiduously pointed out, subjectivity implies a need for interpretation, which will always result in inconsistent results.

Mod A could subjectively interpret Action A to be hostile, whereas feel Actions B, C, and D to be perfectly benign. Therefore, Mod A deletes Action A (or penalizes its author) while failing to do so for Actions B, C, and D.

You, as a separate observer, disagree with the Mod's interpretation, and thus see his/her view as potentially biased or inconsistent.

This is exactly what happened when we disagreed on whether Mikal's actions were objective. As you put it: "It involves how you interpret [something.]"

Ultimately, insofar as personal attacks involve unfriendliness (by your definition, implying hostility), then we introduce a degree of subjectivity and human error into the process. Mods are not machines, and we cannot critique them for being inconsistent from time to time.

This seems, to me, to sum things up rather well.

/thread
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