Stories
Slash Boxes
Comments

SoylentNews is people

posted by janrinok on Tuesday July 05, @08:14PM   Printer-friendly

Amazon Cancels Or Delays Plans For At Least 16 Warehouses This Year:

After spending billions doubling the size of its fulfillment network during the pandemic, Amazon finds itself in a perilous position.

In the first quarter of 2022, the e-commerce giant reported a $3.8 billion net loss after raking in an $8.1 billion profit in Q1 2021. That includes $6 billion in added costs — the bulk of which can be traced back to that same fulfillment network.

Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) CFO Brian Olsavsky said the company chose to expand its warehouse network based on "the high end of a very volatile demand outlook." So far this year, though, it has shut down or delayed plans for at least 16 scheduled facilities.

"We currently have some excess capacity in the network that we need to grow into," Olsavsky told investors on Amazon's Q1 2022 earnings call. "So, we've brought down our build expectations. Note again that many of the build decisions were made 18 to 24 months ago, so there are limitations on what we can adjust midyear."

[...] If you're wondering how that's possible, consider Amazon's unmatched turnover rate. A New York Times investigation uncovered that even before the pandemic, it was as high as 150%. That means there are more employees leaving Amazon warehouses each year than there are being hired.

[Ed's Comment: AC Friendly withdrawn. You can blame you-know-who for the spamming]

In fact, there has been so much turnover that Amazon began tracking it weekly and found it loses an estimated 3% of its warehouse workers every seven days. That means the e-commerce powerhouse sifts through its entire supply of warehouse labor every eight months on average.

Simply put, the strategy isn't sustainable long term. Still, Wulfraat believes Amazon can weather the storm.

"It will take some time to iron out the wrinkles, but they will get through it," he told Supply Chain Dive.


Original Submission

 
This discussion was created by janrinok (52) for logged-in users only, but now has been archived. No new comments can be posted.
Display Options Threshold/Breakthrough Mark All as Read Mark All as Unread
The Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not responsible for them in any way.
  • (Score: 5, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 06, @02:50PM (20 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 06, @02:50PM (#1258529)

    I left SN more than a year ago because of the toxicity.

    The worst part was that I was contributing to that toxicity.

    When it became obvious (to me) that I wasn't getting much value, and worse, I wasn't contributing much value, I realized it was time to go.

    Which made me sad. And truth be told, I kind of miss it. Even almost a year and a half later.

    Now and again, I stop by to read and lurk.

    And today (it's been a while), I was confused by the "AC Friendly" markings in the title (as well as missing "department" text -- or is that just happenstance?).

    I recognize that certain folks have been (and for much longer than since I left) shit-posting, mod-bombing and sock-puppeting (why is it that so many negative references are hyphenated?) since at least 2018 or so.

    In all honesty, I'd kind of like to come back. I've even considered volunteering as well, as I do have some time on my hands.

    But I'm very hesitant to do so. Both because I hated the toxicity and I hated how it made me contribute to that toxicity even more.

    I guess this post says I'm more willing to consider it, but it makes me very sad to see that SN continues to be the victim of so much negativity.

    I have been active on sites like Hacker News [ycombinator.com], but they have their own quirks, trolls, shills for heaven knows how many crappy products/services and way too many people without a sense of humor. They're also much more narrowly focused than SN, which limits the sorts of discussions that are possible.

    Perhaps I will come back, if only to see if I can contribute without sinking to the level of the shit-posters, which I (to my shame) did in the past.

    I guess we'll see.

    Starting Score:    0  points
    Moderation   +5  
       Interesting=3, Informative=2, Total=5
    Extra 'Interesting' Modifier   0  

    Total Score:   5  
  • (Score: 5, Informative) by janrinok on Wednesday July 06, @03:41PM (19 children)

    by janrinok (52) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday July 06, @03:41PM (#1258539) Journal

    First of all, thank you for your honest response. Along with yourself, we have simply lost thousands of our community because of the toxic nature that has been so prevalent in recent years. We have, in my opinion, been slavishly following the free speech at all costs dogma which has given the toxicity the chance to thrive. We are now reaching the stage that if we do not change something the site may well disappear anyway, Of course, there are some saying that it is because we are looking at what we can do to change the environment we are the cause of the current problem. I disagree. Your comment has clearly reinforced the view that the toxicity is the root cause.

    We are seriously investigating now - i.e. not just discussing it and poo-pooing it as breaking with some long establish rule - various alternative options and there are several possibilities.

    First, by removing AC access to the main page we immediately stopped all the spam and 99% of the troll comments. But many of our AC community are valued members and so we looked at how to keep them involved with the site while trying to maintain a reasonably high level of signal to noise. The AC Friendly stories were designed to do just that by allowing some access to the front page. But on analysis we can see that too few of the valued members and too many of the trolls are taking an advantage of this and this is spoiling ongoing discussions. My next experiment is to reverse what we have tried to do - I have created a special user account called 'AC Friendly' and I am publishing some of the front page stories to there [soylentnews.org] so that the AC community can also discuss them, including comments. This is far from ideal but giving every AC full access to the front page has been tried for 8 years and we have seen the results.

    There are perfectly acceptable and understandable reasons for wanting to post as AC, but I believe that for most people they can achieve exactly the same by logging into an account and then selecting the 'post anonymously' option when commenting. I believe it is even possible to set this as the default in user preferences. If some still have security issues then all I can suggest at the moment is that a. perhaps they shouldn't be on any internet site if their identity is so endangered or b. accept that by remaining totally anonymous means that they cannot have full access to the site. Ideally, we will find a compromise that meets both groups needs.

    As I have said, no decisions in any particular direction have been made. These are all experiments to see what is actually possible with the staff manpower that we currently have and limited by being unable to make any Perl changes because of the lack of a volunteer programmer.

    It is vitally important that everyone is able to express their own point of view without harassment or intimidation or even unfair moderation. We do not all agree with each other. That is the same in any community. But by full, frank and honest discussion we can at least understand each others point of view and possibly identify potential solutions. The freedom of expression is still essential on the site - but it can only exist if we can ensure that it can be conducted in a suitable environment.

    Having already left the site once, can I ask you to share your views still further please? Do the options that we are investigating at the moment tempt you to reconsider, or have you got any additional suggestions that you wish to make. Nothing is ruled out other than we cannot stand still and survive.

    • (Score: -1, Troll) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 06, @06:34PM (5 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 06, @06:34PM (#1258553)

      It is vitally important that everyone is able to express their own point of view without harassment or intimidation or even unfair moderation.

      This sounds like a aristarchus post! We all know that SN is about banning the point of view of aristarchus, so that toxic conservratives can have free rein without being mocked or condescended to.

      • (Score: 4, Insightful) by janrinok on Thursday July 07, @05:35AM (4 children)

        by janrinok (52) Subscriber Badge on Thursday July 07, @05:35AM (#1258628) Journal

        As much as I may disagree with what aristarchus wrote (just as I strongly disagree with what Runaway1956 writes) neither have ever been prevented by the staff from expressing their views. All of aristarchus' posts can be viewed by anyone who wants to go looking for them. He was not banned because of his political views.

        He was banned for doxxing another member of our community. It is as simple as that. And had he not done so he could still have a full account on this site.

        • (Score: -1, Troll) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 07, @09:12AM (3 children)

          by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 07, @09:12AM (#1258658)

          Not true at all. The mod-bombing of aristarchus, with the encouragement of staff, took place well before the false accusations of doxxing were made. Let's tell the truth, janrinok, we are men of action, lies do not become us. And, by any chance, do you have six fingers on your left hand?

          • (Score: 4, Touché) by janrinok on Thursday July 07, @11:58AM (2 children)

            by janrinok (52) Subscriber Badge on Thursday July 07, @11:58AM (#1258668) Journal

            We first found doxxing material in early 2000. It was inserted into submissions made by aristarchus, usually in his comments but sometimes in apparently 'quoted' text. However, it was not obvious to us what it was. It was only much later when we started looking back at earlier posts that we could recognise the material for what it actually was. It might have been present before that time but we had sufficient evidence of the abuse at that point so the search was discontinued.

            In most cases we edited it out of the submissions or more usually they were rejected. It made no sense in the context of the submission and was not part of the source material. I don't think it ever reached the front page stories but DID appear in some of aristarchus' journals, and of course in numerous comments. The sock-puppet mod bombing did not begin until mid-2001, some 14 months after the doxxing material was first seen, and the Decision to ban aristarchus was published in https://soylentnews.org/meta/article.pl?sid=22/02/02/2038240 [soylentnews.org] - late February 2022.

            So rather than making false accusations about other people lying, why don't you just look back through your old submissions and realise that you left a trail for others to follow. And your attempts to disrupt this site can be traced much further back than that. Back to the time when you actually gave us some PII that is in the database. Now THAT is probably why you want the site to fail - because that evidence is, in all likelihood, still there should somebody want to look.

            And here you are today, disrupting yet another thread with your false claims. Despite the actions we have taken recently you have not learned anything and you show no signs of remorse. You are leading us to an inevitable decision.

            • (Score: -1, Troll) by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 08, @01:07AM

              by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 08, @01:07AM (#1258800)

              Yes, this nasty person was mod bombing, with the use of sockpuppets, before, mind you, before 911! What more evidence do we need to prove that he is a terranist? Not that any evidence has been presented at all, only asserted, by Boomers whose grasp of reality and history seem to be slipping.

              P.S. When you limit ACs to the ghettos, you encourage certain behaviors.
              P.P.S. There was no SN in 2000, or in 2001. The rest of your information is probably just as reliable.

            • (Score: 2) by janrinok on Friday July 08, @04:08AM

              by janrinok (52) Subscriber Badge on Friday July 08, @04:08AM (#1258817) Journal

              Obvious typo - sorry 2000 should read 2020.

    • (Score: 2, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 06, @08:40PM (7 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 06, @08:40PM (#1258560)

      Along with yourself, we have simply lost thousands of our community because of the toxic nature that has been so prevalent in recent years.

      Yes. There were quite a few who left (loudly, and I'm sure a bunch more who left quietly like me) long before I threw in the towel.

      And the negativity hasn't gone (completely) unnoticed [ycombinator.com] elsewhere [ycombinator.com].

      We are seriously investigating now - i.e. not just discussing it and poo-pooing it as breaking with some long establish rule - various alternative options and there are several possibilities.

      As you noted, this is a complicated issue -- one that you'd hope could be addressed by user moderation. But it seems that some folks (and not only ACs, either) are toxic enough to either engender the same from others, drive folks away and/or both.

      And more's the pity.

      There are perfectly acceptable and understandable reasons for wanting to post as AC, but I believe that for most people they can achieve exactly the same by logging into an account and then selecting the 'post anonymously' option when commenting. I believe it is even possible to set this as the default in user preferences.

      I'd have no issue with that. One of the things I like about Hacker News is that there is no AC posting, and one builds/destroys their reputation based on the comments/submissions they post. But since you can create an account with no email address or confirmation, it's a simple matter to create a "throwaway" account(s) that mimic AC posting.

      Personally, I mostly prefer posting pseudonymously rather than anonymously, as it allows me to be *me* without doxxing myself. Of course, if SN were to be pwned or one of the admins went rogue (unlikely, given the volunteers I know about), my identity could be exposed.

      Then again, I don't think exposing even the more outrageous stuff I've posted here would bug me all that much. That said, I have been pseudonymous more to (at least attempt to) maintain my privacy than to troll/shitpost or generally make an ass of myself.

      If some still have security issues then all I can suggest at the moment is that a. perhaps they shouldn't be on any internet site if their identity is so endangered or b. accept that by remaining totally anonymous means that they cannot have full access to the site. Ideally, we will find a compromise that meets both groups needs.

      I can't (and wouldn't try to) speak for anyone else, but I always thought that was a reasonable tradeoff.

      It is vitally important that everyone is able to express their own point of view without harassment or intimidation or even unfair moderation. We do not all agree with each other. That is the same in any community. But by full, frank and honest discussion we can at least understand each others point of view and possibly identify potential solutions. The freedom of expression is still essential on the site - but it can only exist if we can ensure that it can be conducted in a suitable environment.

      That's the best (read: coherent and succinct) description of what kept me on SN for six plus years that I've seen, including my own comments (and there have been a bunch) on the subject.

      Having already left the site once, can I ask you to share your views still further please? Do the options that we are investigating at the moment tempt you to reconsider, or have you got any additional suggestions that you wish to make. Nothing is ruled out other than we cannot stand still and survive.

      Aside from banning the most toxic folks (which you've already begun to do), I think you've got it mostly covered.

      The questions then become, "will the core folks who've stuck around through all of this continue to do so?" and "will the toxically combative and relentlessly nihilistic members of that group stop being fucking assholes for the lulz?"

      If the answer is "yes," there's a chance that SN can be saved. If "no," I'm not sure what anyone can do to save it.

      And no, I'm not talking about EthanolFueled. He's just your garden variety jerk that's easily dealt with. Rather, I'm talking about the folks who troll and bait with abandon and then get "offended" when they're called out, even though they know *exactly* what they're doing.

      It's painful to try and have a relatively civil discussion when there's a bunch people (and not all of them ACs, either) who seemingly take great pleasure in derailing honest (if heated) discussions.

      That's not an indictment of any particular political viewpoint, either. DeathMonkey and Khallow hold opposite (at least in the US sense -- as the "left" in the US is center-right, and the "right" are pretty far right-wing) political views.

      And while both of them have been known to be both unreasonable and (occasionally) in error where the truth is concerned, they are generally willing to let their rhetoric and facts speak for them, rather than flat out lying and using mod points, sock puppets and ad hominems to control discussions.

      I don't know if SN can be fixed, because if the folks here aren't going to engage in honest, relatively respectful debate, we'll just end up becoming the impression that folks elsewhere have of SN [ycombinator.com].

      I wish I could give you more positive feedback.

      I may well come back, if for no other reason than to try to help make SN more like it used to be -- people yelling at each other, but doing so relatively honestly and respectfully.

      But I'm going to have to think about that.

      • (Score: 2, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 06, @10:52PM (5 children)

        by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 06, @10:52PM (#1258579)

        I'm dalek, posting as an AC because I want to add to this discussion but would prefer not to clutter the discussion up with an off-topic post at +2. The IP hash should match the posts I've made recently with this account, though my IP did change a few days ago for some reason.

        I see part of the problem being that community members reward toxic posts. I'll give you an example. Take a look in a recent journal [soylentnews.org] by DannyB. One of the highest rated comments [soylentnews.org] there is a shitpost. It's obvious from the posting style who posted it. It doesn't further the discussion or contribute anything to answer the question I asked. I modded it down as flamebait because it's a shitpost. Since then, five users have modded it up. Meanwhile, I've written comments that I hope are thoughtful, trying to explain why violent crime is so high in some American cities. Only one of my comments has been modded up in that thread, and it only got modded up once.

        It signals to me that the community, or at least the people moderating in those journals, value that shitpost more than trying to actually explain why violent crime is so prevalent in those places. Post comments that are shitposts or inflame partisan tensions and you get modded up. Post comments that try to actually look at the issues with a bit of depth and they don't get modded up. It signals to me that it may not be worth the effort to write thoughtful comments because the people who read and moderate there don't value those contributions very much.

        I know that the staff would like a higher quality of discussion and a community that is less toxic. I definitely don't blame them for the situation, nor do I have any good recommendations to try to address the problem. But it's very easy to see why people get drawn to posting toxic comments. They got modded up. If I took the opportunity to insult Runaway or rant against Republicans, I'd probably get modded up more. Insults directed at people I disagree with might be entertaining for a moment, but I don't get anything out of those comments. I'm certainly not learning anything or getting any ideas that are worth pondering. But those comments seem to be what the community values, and that's why we get more of those comments.

        Is it actually worth posting thoughtful comments if the community doesn't value them? That said, if members of the community who would post less toxic comments walk away, it just concentrates the toxicity and makes things worse. I know I've posted my share of toxic things in the past, but from seeing the results, I certainly want to be better. But a significant portion of the community has to decide that this has gotten out of hand if we're going to see a significant difference. If enough people like you who want to eliminate the toxicity choose to stick around, we might be able to make a difference.

        • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 07, @12:27AM (2 children)

          by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 07, @12:27AM (#1258592)

          [Yet a totally different AC in this thread] I've only ever browsed at -1 going all the way back to the late 90s. I've never found the troll and shitpost comments too troublesome to deal with except for the copypasta that fills the screen that requires scrolling more than normal. The thing about browsing at -1 is that I really don't pay a lot of attention to what a comment is modded to, because I see them all, so +5 doesn't stand out much more than a +1 to me. Even in the slashdot heyday I never could relate to people who found browsing at -1 "unbearable." I always found it annoying when there was a -1 top post and a +3 somewhere down the line in how the thread would be presented to me if I had any browsing threshold set, so I just found it easier to always see all of the comments and make my own decisions. There is always that benefit of seeing someone unfairly modded down below zero and be able to fix it, but I rarely every see that now or back then. So I don't really get hung up on what gets modded up or down. I do, however, like to use my mod points and promote good comments, because I think people do care, but I almost never mod anything down.

          Maybe I've burned out a very long time ago during the usenet flamewars, or maybe I'm that much older now and I don't care about internet arguments, so it doesn't get to me that much. You've got your equivalents of the uncle at Thanksgiving who has to keep spouting whatever is the cable "news" mouthpiece talking point of the week, but I treat it like I do at Thanksgiving and roll my eyes and talk with others. However, even the Thanksgiving uncle has interesting things to say on non-talking-point topics and I'm happy he came to dinner, so I just view the community here as a large dysfunctional family, just like you get in real life.

          Because I read more than I post, I try to keep in mind that the opinions and views of the ones that post the most doesn't necessarily reflect the community thoughts and opinions, so it is disappointing to see some of the comments in the ycombinator links above. I really prefer to have very little politics here because there is very little discourse on that any more, things have become so nasty and zero-sum, so if a topic turns that way, once it devolves into repeating of this week's talking point spin then I move on to the next thread. I'd welcome interesting arguments there, but unfortunately I don't think we'll be ready for that again for quite a while, at least until we get tired of grievance politics and move on to talking about solutions.

          So anyway, it is a shame that people have moved on if it really was due to the comments section. I've stuck around from the beginning because I like the articles put forward and I like learning from other people. I also like submitting stories for consideration that I think others would like or would generate some interesting discussion. I think I'm pretty smart in the areas that I'm smart about, but there are a lot of areas I'm not smart in and I like to hear people who are smart in those areas (or at least sound smart in those areas). There are some stores that generate very few comments, but that's fine because those stories are usually about something really cool, but there's not much any of us are going to add to it except maybe to make a witty comment (such as a new observation about Uranus, where either we're going to break out into a discussion of complex atmospheric chemistry, or more likely make a few sophomoric comments because not many of us know a lot about complex atmospheric chemistry, but it doesn't mean that I didn't find the article really cool).

          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 07, @03:19AM

            by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 07, @03:19AM (#1258615)

            > [Yet a totally different AC in this thread] I've only ever browsed at -1

            I'm yet another AC (this is first post in this thread) and I'd just like to second the parent--if I had time to think things through I'd likely write something very similar and tolerant (but busy this week).

            I am logged in, and yes there is a "default-to post-as-AC" button that I have turned on. I'm also the SN resident post-theological (I've posted the following link several times previously), https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/our-humanity-naturally/201102/being-post-theological [psychologytoday.com]
                   

          • (Score: 2, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 07, @04:28AM

            by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 07, @04:28AM (#1258625)

            Same here, apart from the copypasta that fills an entire screen, I never found anything to be so troublesome as to be worth filtering out posts based on score. In my experience, the high value posts will often times be either -1 or 5, with the ones at 0 being the ones that are typically of little value. Those are the ones that I'd filter out if I could.

            But, ultimately, filtering out posts just means that you see only one side of the conversation.

        • (Score: 4, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 07, @05:40PM (1 child)

          by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 07, @05:40PM (#1258727)

          Is it actually worth posting thoughtful comments if the community doesn't value them? That said, if members of the community who would post less toxic comments walk away, it just concentrates the toxicity and makes things worse. I know I've posted my share of toxic things in the past, but from seeing the results, I certainly want to be better. But a significant portion of the community has to decide that this has gotten out of hand if we're going to see a significant difference. If enough people like you who want to eliminate the toxicity choose to stick around, we might be able to make a difference.

          AC who started this thread here. Okay. I'll out myself. It's NotSanguine [soylentnews.org] here. And you make an excellent point.

          I backed away only partly because of the toxic comments of others. The main reason was the I was posting toxic comments, and when I realized what I was doing I didn't like it (or my comments) much.

          That's not to say I didn't *also* post thoughtful comments as well, but I really didn't like how I was behaving. That had less to do with the spam (although that was quite annoting) and more to do with the inability/unwillingness of (some) folks to engage honestly and in good faith.

          Frustration about that made me *less* charitable and less willing to to give people the benefit of the doubt. And it definitely had a negative impact on *my* discourse.

          That was sobering. I was part of the problem. And so I had to step back.

          As I said previously, I miss this place. And as such, I will try again.

          I can't change the past, but I can try to do better in the future. I hope that works.

          • (Score: 2) by Reziac on Sunday July 10, @03:21AM

            by Reziac (2489) on Sunday July 10, @03:21AM (#1259357) Homepage

            There's a natural tendency to believe those who disagree with us are not doing so in good faith. Anyone with contrary ideas must be trolling, dishonest, or too stupid to live... and based on that assumption, one becomes inclined to post a needlessly nasty response. And things go to hell from there.

            So, you are right. Benefit of the doubt is a good thing. Disagreement doesn't automatically mean the other guy is a fuckwit.

            You and I probably disagree on everything. But even so, welcome back.

      • (Score: 2) by pdfernhout on Saturday July 09, @04:47PM

        by pdfernhout (5984) on Saturday July 09, @04:47PM (#1259191) Homepage

        https://web.archive.org/web/20131130191257/http://www.shirky.com/writings/group_enemy.html [archive.org]
        "So these are human patterns that have shown up on the Internet, not because of the software, but because it's being used by humans. Bion has identified this possibility of groups sandbagging their sophisticated goals with these basic urges. And what he finally came to, in analyzing this tension, is that group structure is necessary. Robert's Rules of Order are necessary. Constitutions are necessary. Norms, rituals, laws, the whole list of ways that we say, out of the universe of possible behaviors, we're going to draw a relatively small circle around the acceptable ones.
                    He said the group structure is necessary to defend the group from itself. Group structure exists to keep a group on target, on track, on message, on charter, whatever. To keep a group focused on its own sophisticated goals and to keep a group from sliding into these basic patterns. Group structure defends the group from the action of its own members. ...
                        This pattern has happened over and over and over again. Someone built the system, they assumed certain user behaviors. The users came on and exhibited different behaviors. And the people running the system discovered to their horror that the technological and social issues could not in fact be decoupled. ..."

        Previously posted here: https://soylentnews.org/comments.pl?sid=50120&cid=1257270 [soylentnews.org]

        --
        The biggest challenge of the 21st century: the irony of technologies of abundance used by scarcity-minded people.
    • (Score: 1, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 06, @08:51PM (4 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 06, @08:51PM (#1258562)

      Your comment has clearly reinforced the view that the toxicity is the root cause.

      Different AC here... and yes, you are correct. Free speech is important but free speech has consequences. And anonymous free speech tend to not have it.

      • (Score: 5, Insightful) by NotSanguine on Thursday July 07, @06:32PM (2 children)

        Different AC here... and yes, you are correct. Free speech is important but free speech has consequences. And anonymous free speech tend to not have it.

        [N.B.: I'm *not* posting AC here because I want to stand behind what I write, not just here but in the previous comments as well -- cf. here [soylentnews.org], here [soylentnews.org] and here [soylentnews.org] ]

        This! definitely. Randall Munroe put it pretty succinctly [xkcd.com].

        If you review my posting history, I consistently defended free speech as it's critically important to constructive discussion --- especially if you disagree.

        My experience with HackerNews (HN) was eye-opening. As a general rule, free speech is encouraged -- within the scope of posting in "good faith." Disagreement isn't discouraged, but those who are dismissive, nasty or negative (without explaining themselves) are severely downvoted. And nasty/bad faith comments are noted (and admonished in the thread) by the site admins. Those who repeatedly ignore such admonishments are *banned*.

        I think we (I know I did) could learn from that -- think about what you're posting. Is it honest and in "good faith"? Are you making a point that will *add* to the conversation? If not, why are you making that comment?

        I think HN's rules, especially around banning folks, are a little draconian. And many folks there are really hypersensitive (complaining about inoffensive word choices because someone "might" misunderstand -- essentially asssuming that everyone else is a moron, so they need to be protected from their own poor reading comprehension) and downvote/belittle folks for using words that could be considered insensitive if used in certain contexts, even when they're not being used in such a context. It can be quite tiresome.

        That said, having spent time there has made me more cognizant of what I write and how (even minor swipes at others) can be interpreted and contribute to the quality of discussion.

        So these days I'm much more likely to *think* before I post. With the primary thought being, "what does this comment add to the discussion?"

        That's not to say I don't call people out for bad faith, dishonesty or ignoring factual information (and as long as I'm operating in good faith, honestly and providing facts to back up my argument, I'm generally received positively).

        But HN is too narrowly focused, tends toward groupthink and a lack of diverse opinions.

        So here I am again. Back on SoylentNews. Which is suffering because the SN staff (from NCommander on down, at least in my experience) want to make this a place where folks can be free to express themselves without being censored or banned.

        And that's *much* better than many places on the 'net. The downside is nastiness, negativity and trolls/spam posts.

        To survive and be successful, SN users (AC *and* registered) need to step up and not only address the bad faith of others, but examine their own motivations when posting. Does a comment add to the discussion? Is it offered in good faith?

        Please understand that I'm not advocating for the heavy-handed HN style ban hammers. That's way too restrictive.

        Here's an excerpt from the HN posting guidelines [ycombinator.com] which seem relevant and reasonable. I don't advocate for making these "the rules" and punishing people who don't follow them, but they're a good idea and I'd hope that decent folks will give them some thought:

        Be kind. Don't be snarky. Have curious conversation; don't cross-examine. Please don't fulminate. Please don't sneer, including at the rest of the community.

        Comments should get more thoughtful and substantive, not less, as a topic gets more divisive.

        When disagreeing, please reply to the argument instead of calling names. "That is idiotic; 1 + 1 is 2, not 3" can be shortened to "1 + 1 is 2, not 3."

        Please respond to the strongest plausible interpretation of what someone says, not a weaker one that's easier to criticize. Assume good faith.

        Eschew flamebait. Avoid unrelated controversies and generic tangents.

        There are plenty of other things in the linked guidelines which I think are overly restrictive, but the above seem like common sense and simple respect for other humans.

        --
        No, no, you're not thinking; you're just being logical. --Niels Bohr
        • (Score: 2) by janrinok on Thursday July 07, @06:41PM (1 child)

          by janrinok (52) Subscriber Badge on Thursday July 07, @06:41PM (#1258738) Journal

          Thanks again - I think you just about nailed it.

          And while I agree, I think most of us find it hard to do everything you suggest from time to time. It doesn't mean we shouldn't try, just that we should be prepared to occasionally fail.

          • (Score: 5, Insightful) by NotSanguine on Thursday July 07, @07:07PM

            And while I agree, I think most of us find it hard to do everything you suggest from time to time. It doesn't mean we shouldn't try, just that we should be prepared to occasionally fail.

            Absolutely. Having been (with the exception of the past 17 months or so) a relatively active SN user (and, for a time, editor) since not quite the beginning (but close), I know that most users are reasonably decent human beings.

            I'd hope that discussions like these become more frequent and help other folks (including myself) to keep in mind that those they're interacting with are actual humans and deserve simple human respect.

            Will we fail sometimes? Absolutely. I failed so badly that I felt the need to withdraw in shame for my bad faith posting.

            Maybe there should be a monthly (quarterly?) Meta article about the state of discourse here, where everyone (ACs included) can discuss the kind of discourse that we see and how to make the discussions better and more productive?

            Not to (necessarily) bash others, but to talk about the kinds of things that promote quality discussions and those that don't.

            Because as I said, the solution must come from the users, or the ideal of free expression without interference from the admins will be lost. And that would make me very sad.

            --
            No, no, you're not thinking; you're just being logical. --Niels Bohr
      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday July 09, @03:45PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Saturday July 09, @03:45PM (#1259159)

        Anonymous free speech does have consequences, but not for the perpetrator in some cases. That's the problem when that speech is toxic, threatening, abusive and so on.