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CENSORSHIP - Paul Wheaton requested  RSS feed

 
master steward
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Dillon Nichols wrote:

Sometimes this can seem unfair, especially if you are kudzu.



Perfect. Choked on my drink.

To take the analogy farther... a food forest in which the ivy and kudzu have been exterminated, compared to one in which they are only managed when/where they present a major problem, will require much less maintenance over time, or be much more resilient in the absence of maintenance for an extended period.

The removal of a portion of the diversity, in fact allows a far wider variety of diversity.



We don't have kudzu here, but I often wish we did. It has so many uses and not just for feeding the livestock. Textiles, food, possibly medicines... But I wouldn't want it in my food forest, as I understand one little bit becomes overwhelming too quickly. I would much rather have the opportunity to go wild harvest it somewhere away from the farm, then bring home what I need to make baskets/clothes/food.
 
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Fortunately, if anyone wishes to 'harvest' some 'forum kudzu', the internet is replete with other forums that will provide as much as you like and probably a bit more!
 
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I was looking in another thread a moment ago and saw somebody refer to what we do here as "hidden censorship."

I like that phrase.   I wish to encourage all of the staff to practice "hidden censorship."   If you make it a point to tell somebody when you delete something, it nearly always ends up with a five hour long discussion of your poor hygiene, lack of mental faculty, poor breeding, lack of education, etc. 

To those that discover that your stuff has been deleted:  congratulations!  You are cleverer than most.   It seems that your submission did not meet our publication standards.  Odds are that we have directed you to our publication standards and it would seem that you have repeatedly elected to not bother yourself with them.  Since we run an all volunteer staff, these lovely people would much rather spend their time discussing lovely things with lovely people rather than point out the publishing standards yet again.  Or be part of your experiments to find out how much you can get away with.


A bit more poetry from the same post:

it is NOT right to delete what people spend time writing (FULL STOP). 



I suppose if you had actually read the publication standards, then you would write stuff in such a way that we don't have to be bothered with deleting it. 

So, I am going to say that it is right to delete stuff that people spend time writing ... when it does not meet our publication standards.  In fact, i heartily encourage it.  Is this where I add "FULL STOP"? 

I would like to take this moment to thank the staff for the tens of thousands of posts that they have removed over the years to make this site so lovely.    If folks agree with this post, i would appreciate a thumbs up.


 
r ranson
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I advise Burra and the other admins to never talk about their actions and to leave that me.  Mostly because I am grateful to the admins for their help in running this site, and people tend to want to talk about thinks like morals, ethics, lack of breeding, poor hygiene, poor education, lack of cognitive ability, lack of memory, etc.  I prefer to take full responsibility for those actions.  So the admins never delete.  Only I delete.  So now the conversation can focus on my morals, ethics, lack of breeding, poor hygiene, poor education, lack of cognitive ability, lack of memory, etc.  Rather than theirs.



Paul said this earlier.  I think it's rather good.


My thoughts recently are...

Sometimes people are concerned with moderation decisions.  They have trouble understanding where to discuss this.

Sometimes people want to discuss moderation decisions in the thread where it happened.  - This is an automatic way to get your post deleted. 
Sometimes people pick a random Staff member and send them a PM asking for clarification as to why the post was deleted or put on probation. - Their reply will be to start a thread in the Tinkering forum, and their concerns will be addressed there.
Sometimes people start a thread in the tinkering forum.  - When this happens, the Staff are willing to listen to their concerns.

Conclusion:  If you have concerns about moderation and want to be listened to, start a thread in the Tinkering forum.
 
paul wheaton
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R Ranson wrote: If you have concerns about moderation and want to be listened to, start a thread in the Tinkering forum.



Even better:  read some of the other threads here first.  Get the lay of the land for our standards and then ask.

Some people, who could not be troubled to read such things, have started a thread telling us how we need to stop doing things the way we have in the past, and now that they are here, we need to run this site their way.  I think that has never worked, and often leads to that person leaving this site.  

Other people have read a few threads to get an idea of why we do things the way we do.  And then ask questions or make suggestions with an understanding of what we have here. 
 
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it is NOT right to delete what people spend time writing (FULL STOP). 



Would it be right to equate posting things on this site with putting something up on a classroom chalk board? You may have the luxury of near infinite chalkboard space, but if someone wants to keep an indelible record they have to take their own responsibility for securing their own records. If it's not worth their effort to preserve and promote their own words, why would they ever think some strangers on the internet should take on that burden? Logic seems fairly obvious to me.
 
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paul wheaton wrote:I have been managing online forums for over 20 years.   And, on top of that, I have a lot of other things I do throughout the day. 

Frankly, I prefer to delete posts silently.  Sometimes I will comment on a thread and say "I've deleted stuff here. I would like to remind folks ..."

I encourage you to set up forums and manage them the way that you think is best.  In the meantime, I've gotten kinda set in my ways and appear to have certain crowd that is comfortable with this.  There are lots of other forums that are managed in a lot of other ways. 

From my perspective, this way is the best way to manage forums.  I think we have the richest and most respectful discussions.  Oh sure, there are lots of alternative theories in how to manage forums, but most of those theories are put forth by people that have no experience in actually managing forums.  And this might be a good time to point out that 99% of all installed forums fail.



I've decided to write somewhere my comments and at the same time slowly try to learn (by reading) why people / admins would delete another persons posts (as it wasn't mentioned to me why). While I can imagine and accept the many reason, I can see improvements to respect the TIME is takes for both sides in managing things but importantly keeping the wheels going and intact in terms of how solid it feels here instead of things being 'deleted' / hidden. Participation and progress I feel ties in with doing things a bit different and this is what this post is about instead of creating a whole new thread.

So I trust somewhat your experience (Paul) and those that delete my comment (R Ranson), and I think respect can be upheld for all of us (so Paul and his ways, the admin(s) for theirs AND for the time I or people have spent to chip in something) even if it's unwanted at the time in question. I feel it's also a chance to positively get a bit closer to people and principles and train understandings and expression towards what you guys believe in and why.... This level of solid respect and management is an opportunity to level up my writing too I feel - and any mistakes you identify is plugged by this feedback. This is so much softer / progressive and simpler and encourages more people to move on I think and even re-think their own posts for the future using your moral or principle sub-sets. All of this becomes beneficial to the poster, the content removed and the forum. Recommendation are below.

RECOMMENDATIONS (for posts about to be removed / hidden)
- I recommend a copy of the post in question to be sent to the person via personal message so at least they have a permanent copy of what they took time to write and focus is kept between them inside the purple moosage / personal message system. This could be automatically / not needing additional human work.

- the messages recommending people to check the 'tinkering' part of the forum should not self-destruct in two days and rather again be sent by personal message to the user immediately when a post is taken off the thread so it can stay in user inbox permanently. I was told in the thread to go to the tinkering section - but also that in 2 days that message would self-destruct - which I feel 2 days is far too easily passed for those working or not on-line often. I feel better off without a time limit and simply having that send via PM because we knowing this community is made from hard workers and such 'self-destruct' can be missed or wanted to be seen again later. So after my work outside (repairing my cob oven or shelter) there opportunity to miss this message and that's too easy knowing life away from computer (AFK) or this forum can easily take more than two days.

- I only got a message to give me a hint about what happened AFTER I asked something like "hey what happened to my post" on the same thread ( https://permies.com/t/59753/video-pricing-work-time#510078 ). This is unneeded. Just give notice as soon as you do such actions.

I even wrote a personal message directly to R Ranson asking for a copy and he didn't even respond to that part of my fairly short message, replying only that I come here. So here I am! I feel on the most basic level that I'm duplicating text and I think that's hard to refute and good to try and solve.

In short, I'd find it additionally progressive to get a copy of my originally posted text so I can review it myself and perhaps even feel it is respected by this process. My post not being public is not the main point here - simply a minor point. Not getting a reply when I ask is more of a point for me. Language without response make language harder / a burden. It can lead to increased doubt or hard feelings about the ability by those doing those things and a reflection on the forum processes, perhaps it's leaders, even if I'm still trying to stay positive and constructive how to improve on this forum overall, by writing more, and possibly encouraging more time debt. Cutting edge manners can still be ok with a tweak.

The asking of going to the tinkering section happened only when I made another post asking where my post went. This is duplication. More time, change of focus and even make more opportunity to feel bad / misunderstood rather than being told straight way why, More care / respect is shown / attempted when shown why or acknowledged from actions by moderators. Perhaps it's the more honest / direct way managing someone else genuine contribution and what they believe in and a sort of help to say "this was a copy of your text which we could accept at this time" and perhaps "here are some tips why" instead of what feels like elimination of it and now then chasing using more effort to constructively encourage following ups by you / groups of people on that side.

- You probably can use copy and paste to send these copies of text and even send reasons in the same way or script the forum to automatically send a copy when deleted / hidden / moderated. That seems clever and a useful use of technology.


P.S - I have copied my own text at this time because I'm not totally helpless in avoiding similar mistakes of losing 'my work' so I can backup what I write here knowing it's happened before on this site but I would rather I don't have to fear or expect it to happen a lot or unexpectedly happened after a long time from this experience, and being reminded. In any case I'll be genuinely writing to this on-line forum and would appreciate a copy sent to my inbox of what I wrote before (it was a fairly lengthy post and I'd love to re-evaluate it). I wrote about money and how banks multiply the debt by lending to people and asking more % back and then re-lending the percentage more and more times). I feel people don't get such simplicity and hits life across the board HARD. Never being able to repay and using the future children to pay these forever incrementing % not only gives banks more power but undermines / sells everything when the collateral used to take these loans (land, businesses, houses) ultimately collapse / fold as the debt finally comes around again.

Since I don't have the text I am persisting, even in consumption of more time, towards improving the handling of such posts (I don't mind the reason but more the way of handling) and imagine more being deleted so I'd rather work on that than contribute or post more, purely as this has taken about an hour already... and looking at other parts of the site naturally takes a back step. It's not the end of the world, just showing how it encourages less motivation and grace in such cases, because even if it was unwanted side from the forum perspective, it still can help the user to be handled differently. My recommendations above I hope have helped and I am more than happy to receive the text I wrote on the thread ( https://permies.com/t/59753/video-pricing-work-time#510078 ) and see what you think, instead thinking about this being possibly deleted or being ignored.
 
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Henry Coulder wrote: ...great long missive about the way he thinks the forum ought to be run...



Ain't nobody got time for that.

I think maybe you need to find another forum as this one obviously doesn't meet your needs.

Would you like me to close your account?
 
paul wheaton
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First, you quote something I wrote earlier in this thread:

Oh sure, there are lots of alternative theories in how to manage forums, but most of those theories are put forth by people that have no experience in actually managing forums.  And this might be a good time to point out that 99% of all installed forums fail. 



And then you proceed to make suggestions.   Are you saying that you have experience managing successful forums?


Earlier in this thread I wrote:

I wish to encourage all of the staff to practice "hidden censorship."   If you make it a point to tell somebody when you delete something, it nearly always ends up with a five hour long discussion of your poor hygiene, lack of mental faculty, poor breeding, lack of education, etc. 




Earlier still (five years ago) in this thread I said:

I advise Burra and the other admins to never talk about their actions and to leave that me.  Mostly because I am grateful to the admins for their help in running this site, and people tend to want to talk about thinks like morals, ethics, lack of breeding, poor hygiene, poor education, lack of cognitive ability, lack of memory, etc.  I prefer to take full responsibility for those actions.  So the admins never delete.  Only I delete.  So now the conversation can focus on my morals, ethics, lack of breeding, poor hygiene, poor education, lack of cognitive ability, lack of memory, etc.  Rather than theirs.



Your suggestion is exactly where I started.   I think it is exactly where all forum managers start.   Which is the core of "theories are put forth by people that have no experience in actually managing forums".  And then you quickly learn that people are not noble, but human. 

I suppose if we had highly paid staff to take the time to do this, then it could all work out.  Instead, we have an all volunteer staff that would much rather talk about permaculture than have somebody tell them that their mother dresses them funny. 

You might actually think that people would never do this.  And you would be wrong.  This is what people do 90% or more of the time.  Look at your own post, you seem to be on the warpath for one of our staff. 


the messages recommending people to check the 'tinkering' part of the forum should not self-destruct in two days



Did you just "should" on me?  Please read this thread https://permies.com/t/36936 ; to understand how your use of this word attempts to set up a teacher student relationship between us, where I am the student and you are the teacher.  Yet I have more than 30 years of experience and you have none. 


I even wrote a personal message directly to R Ranson asking for a copy and he didn't even respond to that part of my fairly short message



So, you think R is your servant?  I suspect that that will not work out for you.


I'd find it additionally progressive to get a copy of my originally posted text



We do have a process for that.  We call it "probation post".  Staff use it once in a long while for people that seem like they might try to work with us rather than against us.   About half the time we use it, the author fills the post with bile about the staff is stupid.  So then we just delete it.  In those cases, we think our lives would have been lovlier if we just deleted it from the beginning.   So the bar for what to probate should be raised a bit.

Of course, if we get somebody that wants to write freaky long posts on what we "should" do without respect to how we do things, then our practice tends to be more along the lines of delete, delete, delete and eventually they go away. 


In the meantime, for every person that gets oodles of posts deleted, there apepars to be a dozen that never get any post deleted. 

I like to think that the time of the staff is precious.  And I appreciate the time they donate to make this community excellent.   I try to make decisions so they spend lots more time talking about permaculture with lovely people than mired in the bog-of-eternal-stench with people that need to command the staff to be their personal forum servants.



 
paul wheaton
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R Ranson,

I am just now noticing ....

You have 3311 posts ...

You have 359 apples ...

I know that burra and I upgraded you to "Steward" a while back because you are such an excellent contributor here.  

And it looks like the forum software upgraded you to "master steward" because of the sheer volume of tasks that you do for this community. 

And I know that you take on the rather large task, every day, of managing and sending out the daily-ish email. 

I also know that you are very active in suggesting and making improvements to this community - with respect to how we do things now. 


And look ... even your signature is wholly dedicated to this community.


Thank you R, for setting such an excellent example of goodness and decency in this community.
 
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And a lot of Kudo's goes to you too Paul. One thing I have taken into consideration on these things is a person's use of personal pronouns, what I call Pronounitis...in other words, the I's and Me's of a post. The more a person has these words in their posts, the more they tend to be self-absorbed. And just what is in the middle of the word prIde...one huge I.

In scanning this thread I noticed some had a lot of personal pronouns and yet you Mr. Wheaton, as reserved as you were, did not. It did not go unnoticed and says a lot about your own integrity and character.

Myself; I have been censored before, but so what? I would like to think that by now people know me as a doer, and honestly sometimes I have put in a long day and am tired and do not think things through in my brain-fog, sleepiness and fatigue. Moderators...edit away, I am not infallible of typing things I should not. And there is not one moderator on here I would not buy Tea or Coffee for, though for R Randson, I would pick wildflowers off my farm just for her. She is a sweetheart of a lady who has a passion for Permiculture and People. Thelka McDaniels is another, as is Cassie, and Anne, Joscelin, Joseph Lofthouse (though I probably would not pick flowers for him)...oh the list goes on and on.
 
paul wheaton
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Thanks travis!  Always nice to be judged and found to be awesome!


Travis Johnson wrote:Ain other words, the I's and Me's of a post. The more a person has these words in their posts, the more they tend to be self-absorbed.



I think that for a lot of stuff we strongly encourage people to state "their position" rather than "the truth".   So those messages are gonna be pretty "me" and "I" heavy.  Perhaps we encourage "self-absorption"?  (use a hose!)






 
Travis Johnson
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In the quest for integrity in my own life, something that was often lacking in my early years, I took to heart this mantra of truth:

The truth must always be said, but the truth does not always have to be spoken.

The older I get, perhaps wisdom has shown me that a lot of times it is best just to remain mum. Not that what I would have said would not have been truth, but in the end it would only have hurt peoples feelings and angered them. Blessed are the peacemakers...

As for your awesomeness...I knew that when I found out you had an excavator, and a Hitachi (I believe) at that!

 
r ranson
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paul wheaton wrote:Somebody recently cried "Censorship!" on these forums, so i thought I would bump this thread. 

These forums are censored.  Heavily.  Based on my standards - and not the standards of anybody else. 
...

Mostly, I think if somebody has a problem with censorship here, it should be taken up in this forum (tinkering) and not in the other forums.



Just a reminder, if one is having a challenge with a moderator decision, the tinkering forum is the place to discuss it.

 
Travis Johnson
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You are still censoring, and I am still thankful, and judging (but in a good way), and find you (Paul) and R Ranson still awesome.

And Burra too!

Thanks
 
r ranson
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A few thoughts on this thread and other things I've noticed today.

1. I wish my real life was censored like this site.  There's some nasty shit out there and with Holiday shopping season beginning, I wonder about the general public and their ability to be nice.  Sometimes it feels like nice people are a vanishing breed.  But then I come here and read about all the exciting projects people are working on and I feel better about humanity. 

2. Permaculture and the fun things we talk about on this forum aren't always ideas that go well with some interests.  That's why we set up a section called the cider press.  It's a special place for those who like to talk about certain topics in a nice way.  It's a privilege to post in the cider press, not, as some have mentioned elsewhere, a punishment.  If someone wants to know why some threads are locked just as they are getting good with a little mod note that they are welcome to continue the conversation in the cider press... well, you might find this thread interesting. 

3. It is really neat to discover that so many people like talking about the same things I like talking about in the same, nice way I like talking about them.  There are so many people who like this sort of thing, that Paul made a forum for us all.  Thanks Paul!   That said, I suppose this isn't something everyone likes.  But we are here for those who do. 

4. moderation decisions on this site are made as a group.  There are a few dozen active staff on this site and we all work together under the guidance of Paul and Burra.  From time to time a person gets upset at a moderator decision.  It's not, however, a moderator deciding, it's a team deciding.  This comes up from time to time.  It's not nice to single out one individual because one is frustrated.  It's like the person in the shop today yelling at the poor teller because they were out of broad beans and it's all her "fault because she's an ugly..." long insulting rant.  When the fault wasn't that of the teller at all.  It's the wrong time of year for fresh broad beans. This incident reminded me of something I read. 
 
paul wheaton
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It is as if I opened a restaurant that serves only peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.  And for some reason, it has become the largest restaurant in town.   Larger than all the others combined.  And every day people come in and demand other kinds of food and we tell folks "all we serve is PB&J, if you want those other foods, you might wanna go to a different restaurant, or go home and make your own food."  And those people then tell us that we are stupid for not offering other food. 

If it is so stupid, how did this restaurant grow to be so massive? 

Further, if this is stupid, I guess I kinda like stupid.  

Further still, if this looks stupid to you, I think you are in the wrong place.   We think it is awesome. 

The permaculture philosophies are contrary to the philosophies of several corporations.  So they have thousands of people that are paid to come to places like permies and say "that's stupid."  And within the permaculture community, there are hundreds of people that seem to have a lot of time to express "hate in the name of love" or they wish to try and bully/shame people into one tiny branch of permaculture.  So I wanted to create one place that was free of trolls, bullies, shamers and haters.  It is a tough job.  And yet when our all volunteer staff does the hard work, then the benefits are beautiful.

Step 1:  embrace that what we are doing is censorship.  

Step 2:  embrace that this is one site on the internet, not the whole internet.  We are following one recipe.  People that don't fit can go to the millions of other web sites.  It isn't that hard.  This place serves a subset of people, not all people.

Step 3:  embrace that nearly all of humanity will be certain that they know what is the best way to do anything even though they have zero experience doing it.  Especially when it comes to managing forums.   And that these people will also command me "DO AS I SAY OR ELSE" - it is human nature.   And that these people will be utterly unaware of the hundreds of other people, just as certain of "best" and with the same "DO AS I SAY OR ELSE" and their stuff is the opposite.  Each person points to all the others and says "that's a dumbfuck - don't do what they say, duh.  Obey me and only me."




R Ranson,

I suppose you could say that I built all of this site for you, and people like you.  When going through all of the hard work and expense, I just had a feeling that there were lovely people like you that would get it and enjoy it.  I am glad that you found this site.   And I am glad that you enjoy it.   And I am glad that through this site, you have worked to help thousands of other lovely people.   And that you agreed to be part of the staff.  And that you then used those staff tools to make the site even better and ...  build a community that enjoys learning good things rather than being angry at bad guys. 

Thanks R Ranson, for being a fit and for helping thousands of lovely people.






 
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Another vote for censorship.  I like it here.  It's nice.
 
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I'm just gonna throw in my $.02...


This is the ONLY forum I don't cringe at when I log in, dreading what kind of horrible trolling I'm about to endure while I simply try to share my thoughts and experiences.  For me, particularly in the realm of animal husbandry.  The shear amount of awful trolling on those forums is shocking.  I avoid them like the plague unless I really need advice, or I feel like sharing experiences with someone seeking help or advice.

I- WE- can actually talk about how we raise our animals, how we treat them, how we feed them, how we house them, WITHOUT 27 different trolling screaming;
"you're abusing your animals"
"take it to a vet you ninny, before you kill it!"
"no, you can't do that, you literally CAN'T do that"(even though we literally are and it's fine)
"your setup looks dreadful, shame on you"
"stop owning animals if you can't do it right"
"that's what you get for being a bad owner"
"stop trying, hire a professional"

The bullcrap never ends, everyone thinks they know the perfect and ONLY way to raise a critter and are not shy about voicing their sentiments, sometimes cruelly, especially to a hapless newbie just trying to figure it all out.  And woe betide you if you think you can doctor an animal yourself!  They'll just about call PETA on you for not seeking veterinary care!
I, like many, have had to take it to moderators because these trolls will follow you off the post and start harassing you in private messages.  It's a dreadful cesspit of drama where these people come to find and excuse to vent their tempers on one another.

The point is, so many forums about lifestyle and living are so... clique-ish.  If you don't swim with the current norm and buy into the mainstream, you will be harassed and bullied until you convert or leave.

Permies is not like that.  We are open to discussing our very different views of farming and building and growing and living, sharing our experiences- the good, the bad, and the ugly.  Without the trolling, without the temper tantrums, without the drama.

And I for one very much appreciate that.  Thank you!
 
I agree. Here's the link: http://stoves2.com
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