Benedict has left ReasonTalk.

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O1B
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19 Jun 2017

Blue Shadows all 'round!
Night, Ned....

Ostermilk
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19 Jun 2017

QVprod wrote:
18 Jun 2017

I think it's important to mention here that we mods live in different countries and time zones. We're also all volunteers with lives outside of this forum. We won't always see things exactly when they happen, even if we posted in the same thread. I for one did not know of anything until the following morning. That's why I mentioned reporting. Also, I did hint to you about the situation being handled by saying "sometimes we move in silence". I suppose maybe that was too subtle? It seemed like the best response without igniting the situation further seeing as it was a public response. Further more, yes we do communicate as a team and sometimes dealing with people requires time and strategy. We can't have users thinking we have personal vendettas against them.
I get that the mods are all volunteers from disparate parts of the globe and it takes time to cotton on to what is going on sometimes. But have a look at the date this topic started out!

Neither Benedict nor I have ever had trouble sticking up for ourselves when it comes to being trolled and usually when it comes to either of us the troll generally comes off worse for wear after the encounter.

Now I can't speak for Benedict's current motivation for giving this place a wide berth but I know he had a post deleted (moderated) whilst defending himself as did I at the time. That action pissed me off greatly because I'll generally avoid getting personal and mostly 'use the words given' to formulate a retort.

It has only been because of that intervention that I started to use the report button as per the guidlines and the situation that resulted by taking that action turned out far worse than anything that ever happened when dealing with that kind of crap by being left to my own devices.

It's something I've been doing for the best part of 60 years now, 9 of those on Reason related forums without needing to retract a single word I've said, being struck with a ban-hammer or being sanctioned in anyway, I'm quite comfortable with it. The only dissappointment here was 'doing the right thing with the report button' and then thinking, having been forewarned, that the moderators had a handle on the situation with a character that got flagged up at the same time this thread went up. After 3 weeks or so it turned out I was completey wrong.

Now I can't work out who made the wisest choice here Benedict by just disappearing into the wide blue yonder or myself by trying to flag up the issue because I generally I enjoy hanging out here and don't want a very experienced troll or others that may follow messing the place up.

So sure next time you are on a thread where someone is blatantly calling someone a homophobe for no better reason than he'd just made it up don't let it interrupt your normal interaction with the forum in the future just figure they've likely got it covered anyway, it'll make your role as 'moderator' much easier..

Ostermilk
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19 Jun 2017

Ostermilk wrote:
18 Jun 2017
joeyluck wrote:
18 Jun 2017
Ostermilk wrote:
18 Jun 2017
It was only this morning after expressing my displeasure that the offending thread was still there
Which thread? It should be gone. I took care of it and sent you a PM regarding it yesterday at 9am EST.
Sorry my bad yesterday it was indeed. In fact almost the day before yesterday here now... ;)
Actually, on checking the PM times I found this....

Sat Jun 17, 2017 1:22 pm
joeyluck wrote:
17 Jun 2017
Hi!

Kombucha is no longer a member here....<snip>
Which by my reckoning comes before this...

viewtopic.php?p=339354#p339354

:shock:

Selig says I'm taking stuff out on the mods, I haven't said a single thing about the mods that didn't actually happen so what do you want here? "Great Job guys keep up the good work!!!'
Last edited by Ostermilk on 19 Jun 2017, edited 1 time in total.

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Kenni
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19 Jun 2017

Ostermilk wrote:
Ostermilk wrote:
18 Jun 2017
joeyluck wrote:
18 Jun 2017
Ostermilk wrote:
18 Jun 2017
It was only this morning after expressing my displeasure that the offending thread was still there
Which thread? It should be gone. I took care of it and sent you a PM regarding it yesterday at 9am EST.
Sorry my bad yesterday it was indeed. In fact almost the day before yesterday here now... ;)
Actually, on checking the PM times I found this....

Sat Jun 17, 2017 1:22 pm
joeyluck wrote:
17 Jun 2017
Hi!

Kombucha is no longer a member here.
Which by my reckoning comes before this...

viewtopic.php?p=339354#p339354

:shock:
Don't worry about that, I had to make the final call yesterday on it. It resulted in me getting emails being called a child molester and being told that he hoped I'd die from cancer.

I'm terribly sorry I waited for so long to get rid of him!

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Ostermilk
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19 Jun 2017

Kenni wrote:
19 Jun 2017

Don't worry about that, I had to make the final call yesterday on it. It resulted in me getting emails being called a child molester and being told that he hoped I'd die from cancer.

I'm terribly sorry I waited for so long to get rid of him!

Sendt fra min SM-G950F med Tapatalk
Phew, got there in the end though, eh?

That's better than any apology.... :puf_bigsmile:

Anyway, where were we.?

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19 Jun 2017

Actually it's Benedict that might appreciate the apology as he smelt a rat right at the outset.

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Kenni
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19 Jun 2017

Ostermilk wrote:
19 Jun 2017
Actually it's Benedict that might appreciate the apology as he smelt a rat right at the outset.
I'd like to point out that you guys might have taken our intentions a bit out of context.

We've been on your side from the get-go, but we have to follow our own rules for all users. You don't aggressively call other users "noobs" here, no matter how much you've been wronged. That's why everybody in that thread got warned for breaking the rules, including Kombucha.

Our rules must apply to all, but none of this matters anymore really. I guess we've resolved our issues! :)
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Ostermilk
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19 Jun 2017

I propose Gorgon for a moderator role!!!

Seriously, I'm sure he wont mind me saying that he's more qualified as far first hand experience goes than any of us.

Go weild those ban-hammers with unashamed abandon.

:D

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Gorgon
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19 Jun 2017

Kenni wrote:
19 Jun 2017
We've been on your side from the get-go, but we have to follow our own rules for all users. You don't aggressively call other users "noobs" here, no matter how much you've been wronged. That's why everybody in that thread got warned for breaking the rules, including Kombucha.
I guess "aggressively" can be very subjective. IMO, Benedict didn't say or do anything wrong and Kombucha's attitude stank from the moment he set foot in here. Which explains his AGGRESSIVE reply to Benedict, who was only trying to help.
"This is a block of text that can be added to posts you make. There is a 255 character limit."

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Gorgon
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19 Jun 2017

Ostermilk wrote:
19 Jun 2017
I propose Gorgon for a moderator role!!!

Seriously, I'm sure he wont mind me saying that he's more qualified as far first hand experience goes than any of us.
Actually, you're not that far from the truth. :P Moderating a forum is part of my job. I actually get paid to ban people.
"This is a block of text that can be added to posts you make. There is a 255 character limit."

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avasopht
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19 Jun 2017

I'm sure the mods here have the right intent, but that doesn't mean it couldn't have been handled better.

Without adequate self critique and reflection it's easy to continue to create unnecessary bitterness with otherwise reasonable people.

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Kenni
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19 Jun 2017

Gorgon wrote:
19 Jun 2017
Kenni wrote:
19 Jun 2017
We've been on your side from the get-go, but we have to follow our own rules for all users. You don't aggressively call other users "noobs" here, no matter how much you've been wronged. That's why everybody in that thread got warned for breaking the rules, including Kombucha.
I guess "aggressively" can be very subjective. IMO, Benedict didn't say or do anything wrong and Kombucha's attitude stank from the moment he set foot in here. Which explains his AGGRESSIVE reply to Benedict, who was only trying to help.
Yeah well, it's about how things are perceived in general, and not by people who know him. Either way, that issue has been resorted now, and I hope Benedict comes back!
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selig
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19 Jun 2017

avasopht wrote:
19 Jun 2017
I'm sure the mods here have the right intent, but that doesn't mean it couldn't have been handled better.

Without adequate self critique and reflection it's easy to continue to create unnecessary bitterness with otherwise reasonable people.
Thanks for your feedback - with all sincerity I say that I would love to hear from ANYONE how we can improve our moderation here. Being a milk monitor is tough work!

Captain Obvious out.

:)
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Jagwah
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19 Jun 2017

Just feel the need to say - for the sake of not losing a valuable member such as Benedict, perhaps the situation could be re-assesed and if things were a tad unfair, maybe it wouldn't be too much to reach out to him and offer an apology. Admins / mods can inadvertently really ruin someone's day and their perception of a forum. If I was dealt the raw end of the stick after being insulted, well something like that could make me feel unwanted and make me leave and I'm just a noob. It's a big deal that Benedict has left and if something can be done to possibly bring him back it's worth an effort.
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Ostermilk
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19 Jun 2017

selig wrote:
19 Jun 2017
avasopht wrote:
19 Jun 2017
I'm sure the mods here have the right intent, but that doesn't mean it couldn't have been handled better.

Without adequate self critique and reflection it's easy to continue to create unnecessary bitterness with otherwise reasonable people.
Thanks for your feedback - with all sincerity I say that I would love to hear from ANYONE how we can improve our moderation here. Being a milk monitor is tough work!

Captain Obvious out.

:)
Yep, the sincerity is visibly dripping off this post.

Speaking from experience the best moderators I found were always folk that didn't want to be moderators. I'd always question the motives of people that did.

I gave a suggestion how to improve earlier I don't think it got very far though, that's also one of the difficulties, finding people that are prepared to listen rather than think they are automatically in a self-righteous position, although to be fair I'm not actually sure you can help it, it seems to be part of you nature, which of course is perfectly fine and dandy as it takes all sorts.

The suggestion if you still hadn't picked it up yet referred a situation where someone is abitrarily handing out the 'Homophobe' tag don't then act like Capt Obvious by stating Homophobia is not tolerated here. Homophobia is not tolerated in most places that's a given.

I wasn't being glib when I said it, I meant it so it's a bit disappointing again seeing such a puerile response as this demeaning effort.

Now make sure you go rinse the empty bottles before you put them back in the crate... :lol:


Also Kenni I hadn't realised Benedict had called the other guy a noob. Benedict was one bad ass, wasn't he?

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Kenni
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19 Jun 2017

It doesn't really matter anymore though, they both broke the rules and they both got warned.

One chose to leave because of that which is sad, and one got banned because of continued abuse, in particular against a mod.

Can we just put it to rest now? The reason you guys miss the full context of this is because we deleted the posts in question because... Yeah, they just set a bad mood in general. There's more than one story to this it appears and people went about doing what they had to do.

There's really nothing more to it. I hope we can stop harrasing each other now in an attempt to spark an ill founded response.

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challism
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19 Jun 2017

I'm bummed out to have lost Benedict. That guy is awesome. But rules are rules, right? Hopefully he comes back.

I think this thread could benefit from a lock so we can all move on.

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avasopht
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19 Jun 2017

selig wrote:
19 Jun 2017

Thanks for your feedback - with all sincerity I say that I would love to hear from ANYONE how we can improve our moderation here. Being a milk monitor is tough work!

Captain Obvious out.

:)
Like I said, self reflection is king (and mindful awareness, which I'm sure you're a fan of).

You can't turn back the clock on this situation but a lot can be gained by simply asking how it could have been handled differently. In a prior altercation with myself and another member following them resorting to ad-hominem on my technical opinion, the tone applied to myself was condescending and I was spoken to like a child (I might add that my technical opinion was confirmed to be correct). This might be what Ostermilk was referring to when he mentioned an appearance of self-righteousness ?!

My only suggestion is to apply mindful awareness and self reflection. I am confident that there was an obvious and much more effective way to communicate with Benedict that would have made him aware of his behavior, while welcoming of the moderation. Instead the net result is a loss of fruitful participation that could have been easily avoided without compromising any principles of moderation, and I am sure was not the intended result.

For instance:
"Hi Benedict, I just had a look at that thread and is getting far too heated. You know we as moderators are going to have to step in. I can see that he's said XYZ, and then you said ABC.

Look, if his behavior continues he will get banned and we are keeping a watchful eye on him but we'd also appreciate it if we didn't have to reprimand our loyals members such as yourself when all you're trying to do is defend yourself.

We don't tolerate the sort of behavior we've seen from Kombucha, but we also can't tolerate the sort of responses you gave to him either, no matter how much he may have riled you up. Saying ABC because Kombucha said XYZ just cannot tolerated here. We need to fan the flames, not add to it.

We have had to delete a few posts from yourself and Kombucha, which I hope you will appreciate was necessary given the tone we're aiming to maintain. I've included a copy of your deleted posts here just in case for reference."
It's an overly diplomatic and somewhat exaggerated response to illustrate what I'm getting at, and I'm sure with the intention to speak to another person on a level of equals you would be able to do much better than what I've written.

Other influential factors may include what typically happens in a dispute. Since the norm is that a thread eventually gets locked while retaining offending posts, it may encourage a person to defend themselves, which quickly descends into more heated responses. Expectations on reporting may play a major role as well. Greater awareness of and confidence in the reporting function may have resulted in nothing more than mods being notified and resolving it before any further escalation.

Ad-hominems should be addressed early and discouraged. For example, accusing someone of being a fanboy because they don't agree with a negative opinion, or this particular case. I'm sure there are other counter-productive behaviors that ought to be discouraged since they quickly ignite the discussion for no good reason.

Likely you are doing all of the above in some way, and your intentions are all good, so I think a well spirited self-reflection would go a long way, because without it this type of situation could easily repeat itself if nothing is learned.

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Kenni
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19 Jun 2017

I totally agree with this, and as I said earlier, I'm sorry I didn't get rid of kombucha earlier. We saw him as a trouble maker indeed from the get go, but we we resorted to our tools which are simply our rules and our moderator options.

We could have applied more diplomacy, and we might even have jumped the gun on the number of mods that participated in that particular incident, but it did get further heated by bystanders which makes it hard to control. That's why I, personally, resorted to our tools at hand and reacted on the fact that they both broke rules. Could I have applied more diplomacy? Certainly!

But, on an average day, we have about 400 new posts here. With the influx of new users, a lot of them have to be handled, plus the fact that every single users first post has to be approved. We simply can't apply the same level of diplomacy to all incidents because of time constraints.

For that, I am sorry. I'm also sorry that Benedict isn't here anymore, and that we didn't boot the troll earlier. I am, however, not sorry that I acted on the posts they both made, simply because they both broke our rules. There's only so much we can do and Benedict chose to walk himself. If he had stayed, we could have talked it through over PMs, and I'm sure we would have sorted this out.

In the end, there's nothing we can do but our best and trust me, we revisit our way of moderating this place every single day (that's what we use our chat for). We can only get better, but sometimes, the applied pressure on our way of working from the outside makes it difficult to make everybody happy and feel like they've been fairly treated.


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selig
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19 Jun 2017

I had a great conversation with Benedict via PM before he left. He was VERY specific that he was not mad at RT or the mods, and this wasn't our first conversation on the matter. He choose to leave for what I felt were totally understandable reasons, and I won't go any further here except to say I made sure he knew he was going to be severely missed here and I hoped he would come back soon!

I just wanted to make sure there were no misunderstandings about what actually went down here.
:)
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O1B
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21 Jun 2017

Censorship... sounds very 20th Century...

surely, we can leave the bandaid open for some air - without freaking or fainting out.
challism wrote:
19 Jun 2017
I think this thread could benefit from a lock so we can all move on.

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challism
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21 Jun 2017

O1B wrote:
21 Jun 2017
Censorship... sounds very 20th Century...

surely, we can leave the bandaid open for some air - without freaking or fainting out.
challism wrote:
19 Jun 2017
I think this thread could benefit from a lock so we can all move on.
Call it what you want. I just want to minimize all this recent bickering because it doesn't result in anything positive. And if left unchecked, it could have devastating results on this forum. And I like this forum.

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avasopht
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21 Jun 2017

selig wrote:
19 Jun 2017
I had a great conversation with Benedict via PM before he left. He was VERY specific that he was not mad at RT or the mods, and this wasn't our first conversation on the matter. He choose to leave for what I felt were totally understandable reasons, and I won't go any further here except to say I made sure he knew he was going to be severely missed here and I hoped he would come back soon!

I just wanted to make sure there were no misunderstandings about what actually went down here.
:)
Aah, well that changes everything about half of what was said in this thread ;)

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wendylou
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21 Jun 2017

Every "leaving" is a future opportunity to return. Just look at some "Farewell" band concerts where – years later – they regroup and perform again! Could happen. :)

Ostermilk
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21 Jun 2017

Edit: double post
Last edited by Ostermilk on 21 Jun 2017, edited 1 time in total.

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