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posted by martyb on Friday August 23 2019, @06:17AM   Printer-friendly
from the tragedy-of-the-commons dept.

I was going to post this to a particular story, but thought this might generate more attention and discussion as a general submission.

Seriously, what is going on with all these troll mods? Just because you disagree with someone, thus earning a "disagree" mod, does not mean that person is a "troll." To steal a definition from Urban Dictionary:

An Internet troll, or simply troll in Internet slang, is someone who posts controversial, inflammatory, irrelevant or off-topic messages in an online community, such as an online discussion forum or chat room, with the primary intent of provoking other users into an emotional response or to generally disrupt normal on-topic discussion.

Just because you disagree with someone, does not mean they are trying to do the above. Be faster on the "disagree" and slower on the "troll." Under such abuse, it is hard to have a good discussion and, in itself, is trollish behavior by "generally disrupt[ing] normal on-topic discussion." Other than people disciplining themselves, a concerted effort to police such abuses, or making moderation logs public on the bottom of a comment where the score is shown now, I'm unsure of what to do about. As it stands, it is getting increasingly ridiculous to read what discussion is here on any topic remotely controversial, and is expanding outside of even those. It is starting to drive me away from the site, and I'm somewhat confident it is doing the same for others. I'd be interested to see what others think about the depth of the problem, if they even believe it even exists at all, and what solutions you all have for it.

[Ed note. This story is published exactly as received. First off, it bears repeating that complaining about moderations in the comments often leads (rightly) to an off-topic moderation. That is a contributing factor to my decision to run this story. Secondly, moderation is something that I on occasion have found I've fat-fingered and given a different moderation than expected. Thirdly, in the grand scheme of things, a comment's moderation is — relatively speaking — small potatoes. It is NOT a measure of your IQ or value as a human being. or standing in the community. Just accept that stuff happens and that as likely as not, someone will be along to moderate it the other way. Which is a good opportunity to say: PLEASE USE YOUR MOD POINTS! Lastly, if you think a comment was moderated in error, then send the CID (Comment ID) link e.g. "(#876543)" in an email to admin (at) soylentnews (dot) org. Keep in mind however that we are all volunteers here and there most likely will be a delay between when you send out an email and when we can get around to it. --martyb]

[Updated: 20190823_111312 UTC See comment from JR who far more precisely and eloquently expressed the idea I was attempting to. I concur with his assessment. If I want people to upmod a comment of mine that I believe was unfairly downmodded, then I need to be willing to upmod other's mis-modded comments. For perspective, so far this month, anywhere from ~150-~350 mod points were used in any given day. It bears repeating: use your mod points!]


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  • (Score: 5, Interesting) by janrinok on Friday August 23 2019, @07:21AM (82 children)

    by janrinok (52) Subscriber Badge on Friday August 23 2019, @07:21AM (#883966) Journal

    I wholeheartedly agree with the AC who posted this story and, surprisingly, disagree with martyb's comments on this matter.

    This site only works with moderation. It is there to allow people to filter out easily the comments worth reading from the multitude that are not. It is all the more important when we have such an active community of ACs. ACs make a tremendous contribution to this site but a good proportion of them are of low quality. The moderation system - which is only available to those who are prepared to go public with their 'identity' and thus earn respect of other members of this community - is a very good way of sorting the wheat from the chaff.

    If moderation is of no importance, then why do we have rules to ban those who abuse the system by mod-bombing? Why do we encourage people who think that they have made an incorrect moderation to contact the staff to get the moderation undone? After all, if as martyb has claimed, it is of little significance then why bother to correct it? Why do we have a method of filtering what we view based entirely on how others have moderated it? In fact, why don't we simply rip all the moderation software out of rehash and make the job of those who have to maintain the software that much easier? The answer is simple. Moderation is a very useful tool and essential to a site that wants to let everybody have their say - whether anonymously or not.

    The moderation that a person receives does affect how others view that person. If they see a username being frequently moderated Troll (simply for having a different opinion than that of the moderator) then it does affect how we will view their subsequent comments. No, it does not reflect their IQ, but it does affect how others might not see their comments because they will have been down-modded below a given threshold. I also agree that this is a symptom of the polarised extent of discussion in many places that has developed over the last 4 years or so. Moderation abuse is seen as a way of controlling what can be said (or at least what will be seen to have been said) and is another way of dictating the direction of a discussion. It is against everything that this site claims to want. Intelligent discussion can be suppressed by moderation abuse unless we are all prepared to read at mod-level 0. ACs who have something of value to contribute can struggle to have their point of view lifted above that associated with Trolls and Flamebait comments.

    If we cannot strive to meet the standards that we set ourselves 4 or 5 years ago then many will leave our community. One of the ways that we maintain standards is by having a moderation system that allows comments to be identified as being of good, or bad, quality. Using the Troll moderation for something that is just an opposing point of view will bring our site's discussions down to the level of Facebook, Twitter et al. That is not something that I think the majority here would support. If, however, that is what the community wants then we must be prepared to say goodbye to many of those who make valuable contributions to the discussions and, more importantly, are probably responsible for a significant part of the donations that we rely on to keep running. Perhaps, if that is to happen, it is time to invite Bryan to reactivate Pipedot and those wanting an intelligent conversation can switch to there.

    Starting Score:    1  point
    Moderation   +4  
       Insightful=1, Interesting=2, Funny=1, Total=4
    Extra 'Interesting' Modifier   0  
    Karma-Bonus Modifier   +1  

    Total Score:   5  
  • (Score: 5, Interesting) by FatPhil on Friday August 23 2019, @09:12AM (60 children)

    by FatPhil (863) <reversethis-{if.fdsa} {ta} {tnelyos-cp}> on Friday August 23 2019, @09:12AM (#884002) Homepage
    It's good that the people who have the power disagree with each other.

    I think 'troll' is a mod that means different things to different people. Which also means that when people see 'Troll', they will judge it differently. Me? I ignore how things are modded, because only one of those tags is shown, so you never really know what other people have thought about the post, and why should you care anyway?

    I rarely use 'disagree', and opt for 'troll' instead, because the ones I disagree with so strongly enough that I feel the need to express my disagreement without wanting to waste effort engaging with a clear idiot are ones where I simply cannot believe the poster can be that ignorant or stupid. I feel their arguments are so empty of facts or truth that there's no need to counterargue, as nobody in their right might would actually fall for them. Other people are best protected against this idiocy by helping them not see it. The ones I weakly disagree with, because their argument has some oversight or whatever, I don't mod 'disagree' because I'd rather engage with the poster, and post my counter-argument.
    --
    Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people; the smallest discuss themselves
    • (Score: 5, Insightful) by janrinok on Friday August 23 2019, @11:17AM (58 children)

      by janrinok (52) Subscriber Badge on Friday August 23 2019, @11:17AM (#884033) Journal

      opt for 'troll' instead, because the ones I disagree with so strongly enough that I feel the need to express my disagreement without wanting to waste effort engaging with a clear idiot are ones where I simply cannot believe the poster can be that ignorant or stupid.

      If the person making a statement genuinely believes in the point of view that they are expressing then I do not assume that they are Trolling. I might strongly disagree with them, I might not want to engage in discussion with them, or if I do engage then I might be wasting my time, but they are entitled to have an opinion and to express it. There are numerous examples of this, politics, BREXIT, trade wars etc. Those on either side have genuine and heartfelt views but the other side refuses to listen to reasoned argument, or is simply unconvinced by those arguments. However, expressing that point of view is not, in my book, trolling. Having a different, even extreme, point of view does not make someone an 'idiot or stupid'.

      • (Score: 5, Interesting) by Azuma Hazuki on Friday August 23 2019, @12:19PM (45 children)

        by Azuma Hazuki (5086) on Friday August 23 2019, @12:19PM (#884059) Journal

        With all due respect, you are a naive fool and it's that kind of softheadedness that's letting this place turn into an alt-right cesspit.

        Wake up, Jan. There are such things as influence campaigns. There are insane far-right groups, from the large to small (and some of our posters are cells of one all by themselves...) who run disinformation and intimidation and well-poisoning campaigns. We have people who are professed burn-it-all-down types on here, people who either think that destruction will give rise to new creation in their image or who just, as the quote goes, want to see the world burn.

        You do yourself no favors by taking the high road; they are *laughing* at you, because in their eyes that is a kind of weakness that justifies anything they want to do and only adds fuel to their fire.

        Sorry if you don't like this, but it's reality. I hate myself for typing this, and for being so confrontational, but this is the truth and it's happening here. In parallel to the Internet's hideous failures of IT security is a failure of the mind and of critical thought, driven IMO by the same statistical illiteracy and naivete about human nature too.

        --
        I am "that girl" your mother warned you about...
        • (Score: 2, Insightful) by khallow on Friday August 23 2019, @12:40PM (4 children)

          by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Friday August 23 2019, @12:40PM (#884069) Journal
          Ok, let's suppose Janirok takes heed of your call to action and gets woke. Then what should he do next? Mod some posts as troll?
          • (Score: 2) by Azuma Hazuki on Saturday August 24 2019, @01:08AM (3 children)

            by Azuma Hazuki (5086) on Saturday August 24 2019, @01:08AM (#884461) Journal

            Not necessarily. That's one thing he could do, but I'd prefer instead he start publicly and loudly deconstructing said posts, so I'm not the only one or almost the only one stuck doing so. You're a prime target, and I'd be very interested in seeing him shred you, as the impression I have of him is that he's more than capable...

            --
            I am "that girl" your mother warned you about...
            • (Score: 3, Insightful) by khallow on Saturday August 24 2019, @02:04AM

              by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Saturday August 24 2019, @02:04AM (#884498) Journal

              That's one thing he could do, but I'd prefer instead he start publicly and loudly deconstructing said posts, so I'm not the only one or almost the only one stuck doing so.

              I put my time in too, tangling with, for example, flat Earthers, Islamophobes, anti-vaxxers, Chicken Littles, and anti-capitalists, defending your precious bodily fluids from the dregs of the internet. And yes, you're welcome.

              You're a prime target, and I'd be very interested in seeing him shred you, as the impression I have of him is that he's more than capable...

              I imagine he'll need a better reason for it than "Azuma doesn't like."

            • (Score: 4, Insightful) by janrinok on Saturday August 24 2019, @06:58AM (1 child)

              by janrinok (52) Subscriber Badge on Saturday August 24 2019, @06:58AM (#884611) Journal

              but I'd prefer instead he start publicly and loudly deconstructing said posts

              So now I have to make comments just so that I can please you? I will comment on things that I want to comment on - not ones that are dictated by you. I'd 'prefer' that you get on with your life and leave me to get on with mine. There is no obligation on any member of staff to make comments to suit you.

              • (Score: 2) by c0lo on Tuesday August 27 2019, @10:56AM

                by c0lo (156) on Tuesday August 27 2019, @10:56AM (#886026) Journal

                There is no obligation on any member of staff to make comments to suit you.

                Even as a member of the staff, you still don't have a standing in requesting that others must use the Troll modding the way you find appropriate.
                Yes, you still have the right to express it as an opinion.

                --
                https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
        • (Score: 5, Informative) by janrinok on Friday August 23 2019, @12:52PM (28 children)

          by janrinok (52) Subscriber Badge on Friday August 23 2019, @12:52PM (#884074) Journal

          So by having a point of view that is different to yours, I am somehow providing support to the alt-right or the far left? I am being influenced by 'influencers'? I should mark down views that you do not like as trolls merely because you don't agree with them? The bogey men are out to get us all, is that it?

          What a load of rubbish. If someone is spouting garbage they tend to get modded down, but that doesn't mean that they are necessarily trolling. If they are disrupting the site or other people's ability to express themselves then, yes, mod them appropriately - which is Trolling in my book. If they are always repeating their political viewpoint in threads where such views are Off Topic then, again, mod them appropriately. But having a different point of view is merely disagreement - much like I disagree with what you have written.

          • (Score: 1, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 23 2019, @01:34PM (4 children)

            by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 23 2019, @01:34PM (#884087)

            That's something the ctrl-left cannot stomach. They strive to be so righteous (in their minds), that if you have a contrary opinion, you must be an evil fascist racist denying oppressor who must be silenced for the good of humanity itself.

            • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 23 2019, @02:51PM (3 children)

              by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 23 2019, @02:51PM (#884129)

              Right on queue. No one called for censorship but everyone should stand up to your nonsense instead of letting it fester in the open.

              • (Score: 2) by The Mighty Buzzard on Friday August 23 2019, @04:00PM (2 children)

                He didn't say "censorship", that was all you. Punishment would fit his statement just as well and punishment it most certainly is.

                --
                My rights don't end where your fear begins.
                • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 23 2019, @09:37PM (1 child)

                  by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 23 2019, @09:37PM (#884369)

                  Their statement: "if you have a contrary opinion, you [...] must be silenced [...]."

                  vs.

                  Definition of censorship: "Censorship is the suppression of speech, public communication, or other information, on the basis that such material is considered objectionable, harmful, sensitive, or 'inconvenient.'"

                  Whether you are directly blocking someone from publishing something or punishing someone for doing so, you are still suppressing their speech. Would you consider the infamous trial against Socrates censorship, or do you consider censorship a modern invention?

                  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by The Mighty Buzzard on Saturday August 24 2019, @12:17AM

                    Don't play semantics with me, Sonny Jim. You know perfectly well he had "downmodding is not censorship, you can still view it if you want" in his pocket and ready to go. You're not fooling anyone.

                    --
                    My rights don't end where your fear begins.
          • (Score: 2) by AthanasiusKircher on Friday August 23 2019, @09:15PM (3 children)

            by AthanasiusKircher (5291) on Friday August 23 2019, @09:15PM (#884358) Journal

            If they are always repeating their political viewpoint in threads where such views are Off Topic then, again, mod them appropriately.

            Then what would be your suggested solution where someone is actually posting an on-topic post, but then throws in some political views, likely just to rile people up?

            For example, we have a user here whose name I likely won't even have to mention, who likes to make horrible random remarks about Jews. (Actually, there are more than just one, but I'm talking about a specific prominent one.) This person sometimes has insightful comments overall, but will throw in a random remark about Jews at the end of an otherwise interesting post.

            I really don't doubt said person may even legitimately hold the views he spouts about Jews. Maybe he does; maybe he doesn't. But what I'm certain about is that said person is bringing up said views primarily to do things that are disruptive to discussion -- whether that's to annoy people who disagree, or to try to make anti-Semitic discourse more "normal" and prominent, or whatever.

            As far as I'm concerned, the only reasonable match among our choices for moderation there is "troll." "Disagree" is not enough when the person is spouting hateful and offensive things that are objectively wrong as mischaracterizations of an entire ethnic group. "Offtopic" is not quite right, as the overall post is on-topic -- it's just including offensive statements. It may be a legitimately held opinion or it may be someone just trying to annoy people, but what it most certainly is doing is disrupting civil discourse on this site.

            What's your preferred remedy there?

            • (Score: 3, Disagree) by The Mighty Buzzard on Saturday August 24 2019, @12:22AM (2 children)

              Personally, I ignore it. Offense can only be taken not given. It might be worth dropping an otherwise +5 comment down to +4 or +3 with Overrated but it's not worth burying one that contributes anything useful.

              --
              My rights don't end where your fear begins.
              • (Score: 1, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 24 2019, @10:42AM (1 child)

                by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 24 2019, @10:42AM (#884667)

                Disagree. If you offer to loan me a wrench covered in dog shit, if it's not an emergency, I'll pass on the loan, even though that wrench would work just fine.

                Shit stinks. When race baiting gets tacked on to something useful, it's like freeware that comes with cryptomining. No thanks. My computational power can be better spent elsewhere.

          • (Score: 2, Disagree) by aristarchus on Friday August 23 2019, @09:27PM (4 children)

            by aristarchus (2645) on Friday August 23 2019, @09:27PM (#884364) Journal

            It is not the difference of opinion, my dear janrinok, that Azuma Hazuki points out, it is the naivete, the unknowing, the ignorance. But you see, if you have this explained to you, and you double down and resort to "difference of opinion", you either are so ignorant that discussion is hopeless, or you are pretending and arguing in bad faith: in other words, a Troll.

            Hi, khallow!

            • (Score: 3, Touché) by The Mighty Buzzard on Saturday August 24 2019, @12:23AM (3 children)

              You mean it is "The bullshit excuse of the day to silence those I don't like listening to", don't you?

              --
              My rights don't end where your fear begins.
              • (Score: 2) by aristarchus on Saturday August 24 2019, @02:17AM (2 children)

                by aristarchus (2645) on Saturday August 24 2019, @02:17AM (#884506) Journal

                Shut up, you Migrant Buzztard! I do not like listening to you! There! You have been censored. Deal with it.

                And, um, who was getting all down modded because others disagree with him?

                • (Score: 3, Funny) by The Mighty Buzzard on Saturday August 24 2019, @04:19AM (1 child)

                  I think that was because you were blowing your own horn a little too loudly today. Telling you not to play music is censorship. Telling you I can hear it from five blocks away and it's bloody well 3am and where precisely would you like this half a brick in a sock to hit you first is not.

                  --
                  My rights don't end where your fear begins.
                  • (Score: 2) by aristarchus on Saturday August 24 2019, @05:21AM

                    by aristarchus (2645) on Saturday August 24 2019, @05:21AM (#884583) Journal

                    So, got your attention? Now about these alt-right types, and neo-Nazis, pretending to be American Vienna Circle libertarians, . . .

          • (Score: 2) by Azuma Hazuki on Saturday August 24 2019, @12:35AM (13 children)

            by Azuma Hazuki (5086) on Saturday August 24 2019, @12:35AM (#884435) Journal

            Way to miss the point. Okay, Jan, believe what you want. But the fact that you took what I said as "censor people" kind of makes me worry that you're already a lost cause :/ That's the kind of naivete I'm talking about, and that's what allows the very same sneering, contemptuous approach I spoke of to be so successful.

            Here's a clue: it is possible to fight back without censoring. I do it all the time. I confront these people and vivisect their self-serving poisonous bullshit, usually on a daily basis. Rarely ever a word of thanks for it either. I'd like to see you do some more of that, though to your credit I've seen a few instances already.

            Get in their faces. Tell them they are full of shit, why they are full of shit, that their shit doesn't fool you, and let everyone else spectating know in minute detail. We're past the point where the internet can be considered neutral ground, and by all the goddesses, if you don't defend it it'll be taken from you.

            --
            I am "that girl" your mother warned you about...
            • (Score: 2) by janrinok on Saturday August 24 2019, @07:08AM (3 children)

              by janrinok (52) Subscriber Badge on Saturday August 24 2019, @07:08AM (#884614) Journal

              Here's a clue: it is possible to fight back without censoring. I do it all the time.

              Good, that is exactly what you should do. And if I feel I support the argument at the time I may also moderate you appropriately, or even comment with my own views. And nowhere have I suggested that censorship is a solution to a problem in this thread. You are reading what you want to read and not what is being said.

              Get in their faces. Tell them they are full of shit, why they are full of shit, that their shit doesn't fool you,

              Why - because you want me to? We have a community here, and any of them can comment to support you if they wish. Why is it suddenly, in your view, my job to back you up?

              I am not being naive, I am not unaware of what is happening, nor am I being hoodwinked by one particular faction or another. But nobody has the right to tell me what views I must comment on and who I should support in discussions. Perhaps you should try getting out of my face please?

              • (Score: 2) by c0lo on Tuesday August 27 2019, @01:54PM (2 children)

                by c0lo (156) on Tuesday August 27 2019, @01:54PM (#886069) Journal

                Good, that is exactly what you should do. And if I feel I support the argument at the time I may also moderate you appropriately

                What Azuma should do but not you, jan? One wonders why? You having a kinda royally exemption from all the things that others should do?

                --
                https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
                • (Score: 2) by janrinok on Tuesday August 27 2019, @05:21PM (1 child)

                  by janrinok (52) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday August 27 2019, @05:21PM (#886222) Journal

                  Here's a clue: it is possible to fight back without censoring. I do it all the time.

                  Where have I advocated censorship? The topic is a discussion on moderation. No-one has suggested censorship.

            • (Score: 2) by aristarchus on Saturday August 24 2019, @09:09AM (8 children)

              by aristarchus (2645) on Saturday August 24 2019, @09:09AM (#884634) Journal

              She is "that girl" that your mother warned you about, and she is kicking your shit six ways to Sunday, janrinok. Best to declare victory and leave, like Vietnam or Iraq, or the Fucking Falklands. Just saying.

              • (Score: 3, Insightful) by The Mighty Buzzard on Saturday August 24 2019, @02:36PM (7 children)

                Jan won this conversation as soon as it started. He's a rational, levelheaded guy with an excellent attitude. That's always going beat someone whose posts are made up of profanity, insults, and uncontrolled rage.

                --
                My rights don't end where your fear begins.
                • (Score: 2) by Azuma Hazuki on Sunday August 25 2019, @07:05PM (6 children)

                  by Azuma Hazuki (5086) on Sunday August 25 2019, @07:05PM (#885309) Journal

                  Tone trolling has replaced patriotism as the last refuge of the scoundrel. Not that you'd know patriotism if it shoved its big green bronze-cast torch up your ass of course, but the point still stands. Someone can be insulting, angry, loud, and nasty, and still entirely correct. If it's too much for you, why don't you leave? :) Free Speech after all!

                  --
                  I am "that girl" your mother warned you about...
                  • (Score: 1, Flamebait) by The Mighty Buzzard on Monday August 26 2019, @03:28PM (5 children)

                    You alone spout more hatred and pointless insults than the entire rest of the community combined. Calling you out on being a horrible cunt with no actual content aside from insults and venom to most of your posts is not tone trolling.

                    --
                    My rights don't end where your fear begins.
                    • (Score: 2) by Azuma Hazuki on Monday August 26 2019, @10:29PM (4 children)

                      by Azuma Hazuki (5086) on Monday August 26 2019, @10:29PM (#885832) Journal

                      What is it like to be so weak, so fragile, so utterly powerless, that words injure you?

                      --
                      I am "that girl" your mother warned you about...
                      • (Score: 2) by The Mighty Buzzard on Tuesday August 27 2019, @02:31AM (3 children)

                        You tell me. You're the one getting all defensive about being called out as a vile nasty bitch.

                        --
                        My rights don't end where your fear begins.
                        • (Score: 3, Informative) by Azuma Hazuki on Wednesday August 28 2019, @01:13AM (2 children)

                          by Azuma Hazuki (5086) on Wednesday August 28 2019, @01:13AM (#886564) Journal

                          Because it's beside the point. You are far viler and nastier than I am in your heart of hearts, and one of the easiest proofs of this is that you think an outward veneer of civility is a substitute for inner moral fiber. I may be "vile" and "nasty" but 1) so are you and 2) I'm actually *correct.*

                          Do you really think anyone with three sparking neurons can't see the bullshit tone-trolling game you're playing? You insult this entire forum every time you play that card.

                          --
                          I am "that girl" your mother warned you about...
                          • (Score: 2) by The Mighty Buzzard on Wednesday August 28 2019, @02:04AM (1 child)

                            "No, you!" is your response? Really? Do me a favor.

                            --
                            My rights don't end where your fear begins.
                            • (Score: 2) by Azuma Hazuki on Wednesday August 28 2019, @10:20PM

                              by Azuma Hazuki (5086) on Wednesday August 28 2019, @10:20PM (#887009) Journal

                              No, historically that's been *your* response. And Hallow's, but you use it almost as often. At least you're always good for a short, dirty laugh if I need one...I'm a bit worried my sense of humor is degenerating to the point I find people like you amusing in their self-defeating Ouroboros dances though. Oh well, hard times coarsen a person, I suppose...

                              --
                              I am "that girl" your mother warned you about...
        • (Score: -1, Flamebait) by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 23 2019, @03:18PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 23 2019, @03:18PM (#884150)

          I hate myself for typing this, and for being so confrontational

          that's a laugh

        • (Score: 2) by Bot on Friday August 23 2019, @04:01PM

          by Bot (3902) on Friday August 23 2019, @04:01PM (#884185) Journal

          >this place turn into an alt-right cesspit.

          Somehow reddot is not big enough for all your politically correct discussions? I ask because, after posting stuff that made it to reddot gold, I got a ban because the truth incites violence or something like that. So, I ended up here.

          You gotta thank reddot basically.

          --
          Account abandoned.
        • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Phoenix666 on Friday August 23 2019, @04:20PM (4 children)

          by Phoenix666 (552) on Friday August 23 2019, @04:20PM (#884206) Journal

          Azuma, the only response in a free society to a prevailing perception, or a perceived prevailing perception, is to counter it with all the wit and logic you can. If you think a majority is in error, it is incumbent upon you to challenge it.

          Free speech and democracy are not qualities that are won or defended by the timid. They have to be fought for every day, everywhere, by everyone. Freedom and democracy only exist in the tension between people with different points of view. It's true generally, but it's also true on SN.

          The idea of silencing anyone for "wrongthink" through troll mods or some other artifice fills me with horror. Suggesting that anyone should not be allowed to express an opinion that is "wrongthink" totally and instantly annuls any value that the censor's argument has. It says that the censor himself does not believe his own views have enough merit to stand up next to others'.

          I'm going to suggest something upsetting: people we disagree strongly with make valid points, too.

          --
          Washington DC delenda est.
          • (Score: 3, Insightful) by acid andy on Friday August 23 2019, @07:31PM

            by acid andy (1683) on Friday August 23 2019, @07:31PM (#884314) Homepage Journal

            I'm going to suggest something upsetting: people we disagree strongly with make valid points, too.

            That's true sometimes but not all the time. I haven't seen very many posts on here modded Troll that were making valid, qualified points in a respectful manner.

            --
            Master of the science of the art of the science of art.
          • (Score: 2) by Azuma Hazuki on Saturday August 24 2019, @12:28AM (2 children)

            by Azuma Hazuki (5086) on Saturday August 24 2019, @12:28AM (#884430) Journal

            And what precisely do you think I'm doing on this site? You've seen me in action. Look at what happens when Runaway or Hallow or Uzzard or J-Mo come by and drop a load of steaming stenching brain-diarrhea; more often than not I'm along shortly to point out to those who may be deceived that 1) it *is* shit despite the originators telling them it's chocolate and to take a big bite and 2) WHY it's shit.

            But we have a problem of entropy here: it's a lot easier to shit on the carpet than to clean the shitstains out of the carpet, and it's also fucking exhausting to try, especially when there's virtually no payoff.

            --
            I am "that girl" your mother warned you about...
            • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Mykl on Saturday August 24 2019, @02:05AM (1 child)

              by Mykl (1112) on Saturday August 24 2019, @02:05AM (#884501)

              Azuma, many of your rebuttals to people tend to either consist of telling them that they are terrible people, or attacking them for their posting history rather than the content of the actual post in question. I've called you on that before, and your reply was something to the effect of "Yes, but this is a terrible person who has a history of terrible posts - don't be fooled by this one!"

              Shouting at people and calling them shit-stains is not the same as engaging in reasoned debate. And if your response is to say "There's no point in debating these people - they are beyond reason", then what do you hope to gain by replying at all? It's not like they are going to change their mind through personal insults.

              More often than not, I tend to agree with your position on the matter being debated, but I am rarely able to agree with the manner in which you do so. The level of vitriol that comes from some of your posts is simply too high, and in my opinion it tends to de-value the points that you're trying to make.

              I'm posting this because I really value your perspective and different viewpoint to other prominent posters here (I don't want a monoculture) and I want to continue to hear your views on topics we discuss. I just find it hard to keep reading when you start shouting at people.

              • (Score: 2, Funny) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 24 2019, @09:18AM

                by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 24 2019, @09:18AM (#884635)

                many of your rebuttals to people tend to either consist of telling them that they are terrible people, or attacking them for their posting history rather than the content of the actual post in question.

                Yeah! I hate when people do that to racists, misogynists, anti-trans folks, and Nazis! I mean, how does calling them terrible people further a dialogue where it might be the case that aryan races are in fact, historically, superior to the inferior races? Such hatred is just so unhelpful! If only we could have serious discussion, like, perhaps about The Skulls on our caps [youtube.com]. Are they the Baddies? Why skulls? Because they are the baddies.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 24 2019, @12:53AM (3 children)

          by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 24 2019, @12:53AM (#884448)

          letting this place turn into an alt-right cesspit.

          Exaggeration much? It seems every libertarian, republican, and Bernie supporter is a member of the great alt-right internet invasion these days.
          If people start disagreeing about Google's right to censor Hong Kong posters, will you petition Soylent to turn off anonymous posting here as well?

          • (Score: 3, Funny) by The Mighty Buzzard on Saturday August 24 2019, @04:22AM (2 children)

            Not gonna happen. For starters I'd have to figure out how and I can't be arsed to put that much effort into keeping out stupid. Stupid will always find a way.

            --
            My rights don't end where your fear begins.
            • (Score: 3, Touché) by c0lo on Tuesday August 27 2019, @01:59PM (1 child)

              by c0lo (156) on Tuesday August 27 2019, @01:59PM (#886072) Journal

              I can't be arsed to put that much effort into keeping out stupid.

              Keeping our stupid? Why, TMB, you are already in the thick of the things, nobody can keep you out! Not even you (grin)

              --
              https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
      • (Score: 2) by DavePolaschek on Friday August 23 2019, @01:11PM (9 children)

        by DavePolaschek (6129) on Friday August 23 2019, @01:11PM (#884079) Homepage Journal

        I asked about +1 flamebait [soylentnews.org] a while back. And I’m pretty sure I’ve similarly modded something +1 (or maybe +2) Troll in the past month.

        I’ve seen a fair number of things tagged troll lately, but I just figure the answer is to mod it up if it was unfairly down-modded. Or sometimes I just ignore it. TANJ.

        • (Score: 2) by janrinok on Friday August 23 2019, @01:32PM

          by janrinok (52) Subscriber Badge on Friday August 23 2019, @01:32PM (#884085) Journal

          That works too!

        • (Score: 3, Informative) by The Mighty Buzzard on Friday August 23 2019, @04:02PM (7 children)

          Exactly. If it's not someone actually trolling or trying to fling insults and pick a fight, +1 Underrated is everyone's friend. Even if you happen to disagree vehemently with what was said. Plus it lets folks occasionally get the coveted "5 Troll" on a comment.

          --
          My rights don't end where your fear begins.
          • (Score: 4, Troll) by JoeMerchant on Friday August 23 2019, @05:58PM (6 children)

            by JoeMerchant (3937) on Friday August 23 2019, @05:58PM (#884268)

            If I don't get a Troll or Flamebait once in a while, I assume I'm not trying hard enough.

            --
            Україна досі не є частиною Росії. https://en.interfax.com.ua/news/general/878601.html Слава Україні 🌻
            • (Score: 2) by The Mighty Buzzard on Friday August 23 2019, @07:14PM (5 children)

              Sorry, couldn't help myself.

              --
              My rights don't end where your fear begins.
              • (Score: 2) by JoeMerchant on Friday August 23 2019, @08:25PM (4 children)

                by JoeMerchant (3937) on Friday August 23 2019, @08:25PM (#884337)

                Thank you, sir, may I have another?

                --
                Україна досі не є частиною Росії. https://en.interfax.com.ua/news/general/878601.html Слава Україні 🌻
      • (Score: 4, Interesting) by FatPhil on Friday August 23 2019, @01:50PM (1 child)

        by FatPhil (863) <reversethis-{if.fdsa} {ta} {tnelyos-cp}> on Friday August 23 2019, @01:50PM (#884099) Homepage
        I'm not modding the poster, I'm modding the post. If the post looks as if it's the kind of thing a troll would post, then it is the kind of thing a troll would post - it's a troll post. Check my history, I've even up- and down-modded the same poster's different posts in the same discussion sometimes.
        --
        Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people; the smallest discuss themselves
        • (Score: 2) by janrinok on Friday August 23 2019, @02:46PM

          by janrinok (52) Subscriber Badge on Friday August 23 2019, @02:46PM (#884123) Journal
          I wasn't challenging your moderations - just giving an alternative view.
    • (Score: 2) by tangomargarine on Friday August 23 2019, @03:15PM

      by tangomargarine (667) on Friday August 23 2019, @03:15PM (#884149)

      I ignore how things are modded, because only one of those tags is shown, so you never really know what other people have thought about the post

      If you click on a post's permalink ("#884002") it displays a breakdown of which mods it received:

      Starting Score: 1 point
      Moderation +3
            Insightful=1, Interesting=2, Total=3

      --
      "Is that really true?" "I just spent the last hour telling you to think for yourself! Didn't you hear anything I said?"
  • (Score: 5, Informative) by martyb on Friday August 23 2019, @11:49AM (18 children)

    by martyb (76) Subscriber Badge on Friday August 23 2019, @11:49AM (#884043) Journal

    Yes, you captured my intent far better than I was able to express.

    My point was that as a living breathing human being going about my day in the real world ®, whether or not a comment of mine was downmodded is of small consequence. How it affects things here is another matter and you rightly called attention to that.

    Early on in my participation on the green site (I was reading there before there even were accounts!) I took every downmod as a personal affront to my character. Over time I have come to a different perspective and no longer take a random downmod personally. Now, if there were an actual pattern of downmods on my comments, that would cause me to take a deep look at myself and see if, maybe, I needed to reappraise things about my perspective on a topic.

    IOW, I used to perceive a downmod as being like a big letter "A" [wikipedia.org] for all to see. I've now gained a different perspective and try not to take things personally, and also to try to act as I would like to be treated.

    NB: I am finding it difficult to concisely express my thoughts on this. I've probably (again!) written things unclearly, and for that I apologize in advance.

    --
    Wit is intellect, dancing.
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 23 2019, @03:02PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 23 2019, @03:02PM (#884138)

      NB: I am finding it difficult to concisely express my thoughts on this.

      Dude, get used to it. You're over thirty, after all!

    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by acid andy on Friday August 23 2019, @07:38PM

      by acid andy (1683) on Friday August 23 2019, @07:38PM (#884318) Homepage Journal

      I thought it was very clear, but I ran out of mod points. A poster's perspective has a key role in these disagreements. As I wrote in another reply above, it's only when you lay the perspectives bare that the true sticking point that actually causes the disagreement can be analyzed. But hey, I've said this sort of thing before.

      --
      Master of the science of the art of the science of art.
    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by aristarchus on Friday August 23 2019, @09:33PM

      by aristarchus (2645) on Friday August 23 2019, @09:33PM (#884366) Journal

      Come now, martyb!

      Over time I have come to a different perspective and no longer take a random downmod personally

      You need to arrive at the place where systemic, belligerent, and intensive downmodding are not taken personally! Not to mention the callous and unfeeling rejection of submissions by the eds. [sniff, . . . ]

    • (Score: 4, Insightful) by RS3 on Saturday August 24 2019, @03:29AM (14 children)

      by RS3 (6367) on Saturday August 24 2019, @03:29AM (#884534)

      This whole discussion dovetails with why I don't really express myself much here. Chicken I hear someone saying? I think it's that people are not allowed to freely express themselves without some degree of repercussion- abuse of the troll mod, ad hominem, name-calling, etc. Sure, I can grow a thick skin, but maybe I desire to be among a more cerebral and polite crowd. My life, my choice.

      And waxing social psychologist for a moment, I think egos are way too big when people are so overly sure that their opinion is absolute and universal truth. And I say that from direct experience: long ago I was very sure of things I disagree with now. But it's not just here- I think it's been studied much, that people are more self-involved, arrogant, and unabashedly condescending than ever before.

      You guys like to think you run a free/open site, but in fact, if I post something and get one lousy downmod from one person, my comment drops by one whole point, and is below the browsing threshold for some people, and so may never receive an upmod (due to the smaller audience). I seriously doubt anyone here looks exclusively and specifically for the unfairly downmodded comments and gives them an upmod. I do when I see them, but there's no way to specifically search and lend a helping hand.

      And there's a psychological component from group dynamics: a downmodded comment causes people to think "yeah, maybe that is troll, and I'm learning about what troll looks like, so I can be all big and strong and kewl and downmod someone troll too."

      I'd like to suggest a modification: one person's vote does not have the power to drop a comment's score by one whole point.

      But the whole reason I'm posting (as Star Trek is on in the background here with Seven of Nine): my impression is that you've been assimilated to some degree. Rather than freely expressing yourself, you're displaying obsequious deference to the crowd. And maybe that's okay; I'm no philosopher, but I'd rather be in a more open, less criticizing environment.

      --
      Experience enables you to recognize a mistake every time you repeat it.
      • (Score: 3, Informative) by janrinok on Saturday August 24 2019, @07:54AM (13 children)

        by janrinok (52) Subscriber Badge on Saturday August 24 2019, @07:54AM (#884620) Journal

        [looks] specifically for the unfairly downmodded comments

        Ah but we do. As a casual reader I prefer to browse at +1, but when we are wearing out editor hats most of us read every comment. We do look for abuses from time to time. Not all the time, we are here to edit the stories and the community does a reasonable job of policing the site after all, but we do keep an eye on the site for things going awry. And we have various additional information displays that can quickly show some of the more obvious abuse attempts. BUT, that does not mean that we immediately jump in and change things. This is your site and people are free to use it as they wish providing that they are not stopping others from doing the same.

        maybe I desire to be among a more cerebral and polite crowd. My life, my choice.

        There are many others who probably feel the same. But we are an open community not an echo chamber. We attract all sorts of people, the huge majority of whom contribute positively to this site. Unfortunately, the ones that don't tend to be the noisiest.

        • (Score: 3, Interesting) by RS3 on Saturday August 24 2019, @07:55PM (12 children)

          by RS3 (6367) on Saturday August 24 2019, @07:55PM (#884884)

          1) It was too late, me too tired. What I meant was: it's not possible to browse at -1 _ONLY_, excluding 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. OR, somehow only see those who have been downmodded, even if they're at a 4.

          2) Your point is well made and well taken; it's your (collectively) site to do with as you wish. I just tried to offer the idea that you could have a different culture here if you want to.

          --
          Experience enables you to recognize a mistake every time you repeat it.
          • (Score: 4, Interesting) by martyb on Monday August 26 2019, @02:45AM (11 children)

            by martyb (76) Subscriber Badge on Monday August 26 2019, @02:45AM (#885479) Journal
            I have pondered for a long rime how to encourage more harmonious discussions. For several months now, I have postulated what the outcome would be if we provided one more moderation option:

            -1 Ad Hominem

            which would be intended to be applied a comment which criticizes a *commenter*, rather than the comment, itself. Maybe this is covered to some degree by an offtopic moderation, but I think that an Ad Hominem mod would... guide... people to stay on topic about the matter at hand.

            In other words:

            Say what you mean,
            Mean what you say,
            But, don't say it mean.

            Thoughts?

            --
            Wit is intellect, dancing.
            • (Score: 2) by RS3 on Monday August 26 2019, @03:11AM (6 children)

              by RS3 (6367) on Monday August 26 2019, @03:11AM (#885487)

              > Thoughts?

              Firstly I'm honored that you've asked. It's awesome, I love it; it's possibly brilliant. What's the worst that can happen? TMB misses out on the biggest fish ever whilst coding a bit? And if it creates some unanticipated problem, remove it.

              Like anything it could also be abused, but maybe someday there could be moderation, moderators...

              Thanks!!

              --
              Experience enables you to recognize a mistake every time you repeat it.
              • (Score: 3, Interesting) by The Mighty Buzzard on Monday August 26 2019, @03:30PM (5 children)

                Actually, that's such a quick addition it wouldn't even take my first cup of morning coffee to complete. And I like the shit out of the idea even though it would come back to bite me in the ass karma-wise.

                --
                My rights don't end where your fear begins.
                • (Score: 2) by RS3 on Monday August 26 2019, @08:13PM (4 children)

                  by RS3 (6367) on Monday August 26 2019, @08:13PM (#885789)

                  (pssst- I know a guy who can fix that karma thing. No bread crumb trails.)

                  --
                  Experience enables you to recognize a mistake every time you repeat it.
                  • (Score: 2) by The Mighty Buzzard on Tuesday August 27 2019, @02:33AM (3 children)

                    I don't. It'd take me most of a day to relearn the mischievous skills I had twenty and change years ago. Nowadays I'm all about wanting to leave a trail, so I can look at it later when I've forgotten how the hell I did it last time.

                    --
                    My rights don't end where your fear begins.
                    • (Score: 2) by RS3 on Tuesday August 27 2019, @04:20AM (2 children)

                      by RS3 (6367) on Tuesday August 27 2019, @04:20AM (#885940)

                      I hate to admit but I'm doing that more and more, and thinking I'm becoming my father in the process. That thing was so obvious and fairly easy the first time through, right? Beginner's luck? But now I have to figure out where I wrote notes about how I did that thing... If only there was some kind of storage system that humans could store, organize, and retrieve data from...

                      Not sure how you feel about phpmyadmin- I think we talked about it once. I use it, but I never leave it open to the 'net (I know I know- php grumble grumble... I have to run it... no problems in 12 years.)

                      --
                      Experience enables you to recognize a mistake every time you repeat it.
                      • (Score: 2) by The Mighty Buzzard on Tuesday August 27 2019, @10:21AM (1 child)

                        I go with a mysql prompt. It keeps a history of what all I've done for the last goodly while that I can search with ^R just like I can in bash. Mind you, that does leave me typing `describe $tablename` fairly often.

                        --
                        My rights don't end where your fear begins.
                        • (Score: 2) by RS3 on Tuesday August 27 2019, @01:17PM

                          by RS3 (6367) on Tuesday August 27 2019, @01:17PM (#886055)

                          Yes, I'm remembering we had this exchange many moons ago. Part of me wishes I used mysql or SQL in general to remember all the commands. Too many areas of "expertise" for me. Networking, routers, component-level analog and digital electronics, PCB layouts, hands-on soldering, etc., C and assembler, on and on, and all while I'm trying to play doctor, or at least medical advocate and care coordinator for my very ill father.

                          One of the cool things that I use a lot in phpmyadmin is that it will tell you all of the gigantic pile of mysql variables, settable parameters, what's wasting RAM, what needs increasing, etc. It's not AI, but the hints are great, and you can set new parameters on the fly. It does not edit my.cnf for you (that I know of...), so you go carefully and edit my.cnf as you go.

                          --
                          Experience enables you to recognize a mistake every time you repeat it.
            • (Score: 2) by Azuma Hazuki on Friday August 30 2019, @01:59AM (3 children)

              by Azuma Hazuki (5086) on Friday August 30 2019, @01:59AM (#887600) Journal

              One problem: it is going to get used on people who provide a coherent argument laced with insults, as is my wont with the deserving on this site. An ad-hom is when someone uses insults *in lieu of* an argument, not alongside one. Our resident carrion-botherng manchild doesn't get the distinction, and he and his fellow-travelers would gleefully abuse this one to high heaven and back.

              --
              I am "that girl" your mother warned you about...
  • (Score: 4, Funny) by The Mighty Buzzard on Friday August 23 2019, @03:56PM (1 child)

    In fact, why don't we simply rip all the moderation software out of rehash and make the job of those who have to maintain the software that much easier?

    Tempting but I think NCommander would fly out and break all my fishing poles if I did.

    --
    My rights don't end where your fear begins.
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 24 2019, @09:30AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 24 2019, @09:30AM (#884641)

      Amazing you thinking you could get off so lightly!