Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 11-27-2019, 02:57 PM
Miller's Avatar
Miller is offline
Sith Mod
Moderator
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: Bear Flag Republic
Posts: 44,654

How reprehensible do YOU want to be in the Pit?


As some of you are no doubt aware, we had a bit of drama related to the Pit recently, which has led to me reconsidering my approach to how I moderate the Pit.

Previously, I'd held to a position where pretty much any sort of insult was allowed, short of racial slurs. I used this standard because I felt it was about as objective as possible, but it's led to a number of situations in the last couple years where I was defending behavior that made me nauseous, and I don't want to do that anymore. We're also having this discussion in the mod loop right now, but I thought I'd take a page from Jonathan Chance and solicit some input from you terrifying degenerates valued board members.

Before I continue, I want to make an important point in red text.

I placed this thread in the Pit, because I want people who post regularly in this forum to see and respond to it. However, I don't want to see fighting or insults in here. I intend to moderate this discussion as if it were in ATMB. Please keep this in mind. If you absolutely have to call someone a name, start a new Pit thread to do it. Also, please don't illustrate your arguments by linking to posts that demonstrate what you feel to be unacceptable behavior, as I don't want to use this thread to re-litigate old issues.

My goal here is to reign the Pit in, not neuter it. I want to still allow posters a lot of latitude in how they express themselves, without turning the Pit into a refuge for toxic assholes. I'm hesitant about any more "bright line" policies. The previous "(almost) Anything Goes" policy was a result of me trying to find a bright line that didn't rely on my personal opinion about what was "too far," and that hasn't worked out great. I don't want any policies that allow abominable behavior because it falls on the right side of a poorly-worded bright line, but I also don't want to draw a rule so broadly that it penalizes common idioms or mainstream opinions. I think we need to move to something a little more subjective. There have been a few ideas that come up a lot as behavior that shouldn't be allowed, so I'll start with those. Note that, while I'm going to share my opinions about each of these as I introduce them, I'm not set in stone about any of this.

Making personal attacks against posters
This is both the area where I intend the most immediate change, but also the most subjective. I want to make attacking someone over deep personal trauma out-of-bounds, but that's going to necessarily be a lot of subjective decisions on my part. I've certainly seen a lot of people report posts because they were "traumatized" by the most picayune insults, or even simply criticism and disagreement. On the other hand, as an able-bodied white guy, there are entire oceans of trauma out there of which I have only the vaguest understanding.

Insulting other poster's minor children
This is maybe a part of that whole "oceans I don't understand" thing, but I honestly don't see why this is a big deal. If you were insulting the kid to their face, yeah, that's awful, but presumably they're never going to see it, so who cares? Well, a lot of people, apparently. This is actually a pretty easy bright line to draw, because while I'm not personally bothered by it, I don't really see any scenarios where it feels necessary.

I've often seen variations of this suggestion that include insulting other posters performance as parents, which I feel is over-broad. While this area is certainly ripe for "too far" posts, I think there are some areas where criticism is legitimate and even necessary. Someone posting about how they're not vaccinating their kids deserve to be roasted at least a little, for example. I think there's also some value in the idea that, if you introduce your kids into a debate, you're inviting commentary on your relationship with them.

Calling other posters "pedophiles"
This is something else that gets brought up a lot, that I'm not personally bothered by. (For the record, yes, actual pedophiles bother me, but I don't see saying "You're a pedophile" as necessarily worse than, "You're a motherfucker.") And this is an area where I think there is some room for legitimate attacks. We've had posters (again, I'm not naming anyone in particular, and please don't offer your own examples of what I'm talking about here) who have posted things about children that, while not something that you could take to the cops, still comes across as deeply skeevy, and I'd like to retain the ability to call that sort of thing out when it happens.

Anyway, this is where I'm at on this subject right now. I'm open to ideas or suggestions for other changes, or arguments that I'm not taking the right approach on these specific issues.
  #2  
Old 11-27-2019, 03:19 PM
dropzone's Avatar
dropzone is offline
Member
 
Join Date: May 2000
Location: Bedlam
Posts: 30,149
Not particularly, but that was probably a given.
  #3  
Old 11-27-2019, 03:40 PM
steatopygia's Avatar
steatopygia is offline
Experimental FOC Test Pilot
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: North Idaho mostly
Posts: 1,930
I'm fine with the way you have been doing things.

I thought Shodan's comment was out of bounds and and a pure dick move. I called him out over it. I didn't report it.

If I had seen Zekendestroi's post I probably would have reported that. Straight out personal attacks based on racism need to be immediately banned. A poster who does that brings nothing good to the board.

What is different between those posts? I'm not sure why I see them as not the same.

Sorry, not much help.
  #4  
Old 11-27-2019, 03:46 PM
puzzlegal's Avatar
puzzlegal is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 5,042
I don't want to be reprehensible in the pit, or anywhere else. But how reprehensible do I think you should allow other posters to be...

I think you should be able to call another poster a racist, or a bigot, or accuse them of other forms of insensitivity. I feel that's a valuable "release valve" while stuff is being litigated more politely elsewhere.

I think you should be allowed to call another poster stupid, or pigheaded, or uninformed, or a liar or otherwise make nasty statements about the quality of the information/opinions they share. Ditto.

Should you be allowed to accuse other posters of illegal behavior? (Pedophilia? Rape? Assault? I dunno, despite your stated rules, I'd like to see examples of where that's been done to get a sense of how it might play out.

I can't see any particular reason to insult someone else's kids. Or their parents or spice or sibs, for that matter, unless they somehow explicitly invite that.

I'm not sure what exactly you mean by "personal trauma". Again, I'd want examples to have a better idea of how that plays out. Do you mean like calling someone a slut?
  #5  
Old 11-27-2019, 04:14 PM
Kimstu is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Posts: 23,046
Yeah, as someone who posts a lot in the Pit but treats it more like a version of Great Debates where other people can lose their tempers if they want to, I don't have a problem with the way it's been moderated so far.

I agree that the general principle of permitting insults and invective, but not outright hate speech or nasty gossip about off-board personal lives, is a good one. But I have no idea what specific policies would do the best job of implementing it.
  #6  
Old 11-27-2019, 04:14 PM
kaylasdad99 is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Sep 1999
Location: Anaheim, CA
Posts: 32,409
Not sure if you ought to give a pass to people who use the phrase “reign in” in a context of controlling behavior (“I think that the Prince of Wales should be allowed to reign in Wales” would be fine, of course, unless we’re talking about Wales being unruly and needing to be reined in), but maybe you’re right, and a gentle reprimand is sufficient.
  #7  
Old 11-27-2019, 04:15 PM
Kimstu is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Posts: 23,046
Quote:
Originally Posted by kaylasdad99 View Post
Not sure if you ought to give a pass to people who use the phrase “reign in” in a context of controlling behavior
HEAR HEAR.

Same goes for "tow the line" in a context of complying with restrictions on behavior, unless actual haulage of rope is involved.
  #8  
Old 11-27-2019, 04:47 PM
kaylasdad99 is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Sep 1999
Location: Anaheim, CA
Posts: 32,409
Quote:
Originally Posted by puzzlegal View Post
I'm not sure what exactly you mean by "personal trauma". Again, I'd want examples to have a better idea of how that plays out. Do you mean like calling someone a slut?
I think he had in mind more of an example like where a poster had previously copped to something that they might later regret having shared, such as, say, details of a harrowing PTSD episode/meltdown; and asking them in a mock-bantering tone if they’re planning any reunions with the people they met in the lockdown unit of the hospital.

Yeah, people sometimes overshare around here, and I see that as a function of the Board giving the impression that we’re by and large a community of accepting individuals who recognize that we all have our foibles and are therefore more reticent with our opportunities to express judgmental reactions.

It’s all context-dependent, of course. We’re (again, by and large) articulate communicators, endowed with reading comprehension abilities far beyond those of normal men. It’s not that hard to discern when a confessional-type post is appropriate banter-fodder. If someone mis-steps, and someone else chimes in with some form of “Dude, not cool,” it need not be taken as Junior Modding. And then the ball is back in the mis-stepper’s court. A double-down should be reported; a step back should be respected (as should a wave-off from the target).

In fact, if I may be so bold as to offer a proposal, in certain instances the mod could check with the target of the putative attack and get that person’s take on whether it should be treated as out of bounds.
  #9  
Old 11-27-2019, 04:49 PM
D_Odds is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Queens
Posts: 12,895
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kimstu View Post
HEAR HEAR.

Same goes for "tow the line" in a context of complying with restrictions on behavior, unless actual haulage of rope is involved.
Would/could/should 'of' should not just be banned, but drones should be sent to eliminate this scourge.
__________________
The problem with political jokes is that they get elected
  #10  
Old 11-27-2019, 04:51 PM
Miller's Avatar
Miller is offline
Sith Mod
Moderator
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: Bear Flag Republic
Posts: 44,654
Quote:
Originally Posted by kaylasdad99 View Post
Not sure if you ought to give a pass to people who use the phrase “reign in” in a context of controlling behavior (“I think that the Prince of Wales should be allowed to reign in Wales” would be fine, of course, unless we’re talking about Wales being unruly and needing to be reined in), but maybe you’re right, and a gentle reprimand is sufficient.
My shame, it is complete.
  #11  
Old 11-27-2019, 04:52 PM
Dropo is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2017
Posts: 649
Quote:
Originally Posted by Miller View Post
My goal here is to reign the Pit in, not neuter it. I want to still allow posters a lot of latitude in how they express themselves, without turning the Pit into a refuge for toxic assholes.
I disagree. The Pit should be a refuge for toxic assholes, and nothing else. That is not how it currently works.


Revised from my earlier post (#189):
http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/...=885750&page=4


As the OP notes, it will be very challenging to craft a workable rule concerning insults. However, there is a very clear distinction between insults and accusing another poster of specific criminal activity (e.g., pedophilia) without offering any evidence whatsoever to support it. I can think of no valid reason, excuse, justification or even rationalization for allowing such posts, as they are despicable, offensive and – given the parent company of the SDMB is in the U.S. – un-American (in principle, if not in current practice).

Note that there is also a line between referencing (e.g., in the form of an insult) criminal activity in connection with a poster and making a specific accusation of a crime without evidence. The latter has no place on this message board and should be subject to moderator sanctions, imo.


As other posters have noted at one time or another, some of the most interesting discussions on this board occur in the Pit. Many of these discussions are as civil as the rest of the board and it is only because they have been labeled “rants” - regardless of topic - that they are sent to the Pit. The problem is that the Pit also allows uncivil - and reprehensible - posts. The Pit is thus serving two functions at odds with one another. Given the ugliness which rears its head every so often in the Pit, its true nature is effectively being disguised/sanitized by the appearance of civil debate within it. This seems to me a design flaw; it is, in effect, a half-assed Pit.

I’m sure I haven’t thought this through well enough, but what if the Pit only had one thread reserved solely for pitting other posters and insult contests between posters. No other discussion would be allowed. Any topic outside those parameters that would normally go in the Pit would have to find a home elsewhere on the board and be subject to the usual rules.

Non-political rants against institutions, businesses and (off-board) personalities could go in IMHO or MPSIMS; politically based rants could go in Elections, which could be retitled “Politics” (as a number of posters have suggested in the past), a name every bit as dull and unimaginative as “Elections.” Alternatively, it could be called something like “The Ruling Class” or even “The Ruling Voice” and deal political issues and leaders.

Such a rearrangement would preserve the “venting” function of the Pit. I think this is important because there needs to be a place where posters can call out other posters for their perceived wrongs without fear of moderator sanctions. It would allow those who revel in such hostile interactions a place to wallow, presumably occupying more of their time while on the SDMB than squatting in non-Pit threads where self-restraint is a necessary prerequisite to civil discussion.

At the same time, it would eliminate civil discussion in the Pit, making the distinction between it and the rest of the board more stark. Perhaps it might also be desirable to require a second click to enter the Pit, with a disclaimer appearing warning those who enter about what to expect.

Given the concentrated spewed bile that would be on display in the Pit, no one who was truly interested in civil discussion would feel inclined to read the single thread or post in it without cause; it would become a true Pit. It would still need a moderator, lest it become a haven for hate speech or potential legal liability. Short of that, it would be pretty much anything goes.

The goal is give all posters as much freedom as possible. Those who wish to spend their time belittling other posters could do so. Those who wish to avoid such unplesantries and engage in civil discussion would have no reason to visit the Pit; that is not how things work now. Confining the Pit to a single, ridiculously long thread also seems likely to reduce – but not eliminate – the appeal and satisfaction of posting there in the overall interests of promoting more civil discussion on the board.

All this, of course, assumes the SDMB wants to encourage more civil discussion in general. While there is absolutely no guarantee any of this would bring back departed posters or attract new ones to stave off the board’s decline, it is a certainty that holding to the status quo is doing neither.

Things must change in order to stay the same.”
------Paraphrased from The Leopard by Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa
  #12  
Old 11-27-2019, 04:55 PM
Ludovic is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: America's Wing
Posts: 30,589
Quote:
Originally Posted by kaylasdad99 View Post
Not sure if you ought to give a pass to people who use the phrase “reign in” in a context of controlling behavior (“I think that the Prince of Wales should be allowed to reign in Wales” would be fine, of course, unless we’re talking about Wales being unruly and needing to be reined in)
If he renounced his claim and had a sort of de-coronation ceremony, but the next heir assumed the title too early, the retiring Prince of Wales could then say "don't reign on my parade."
  #13  
Old 11-27-2019, 04:55 PM
kaylasdad99 is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Sep 1999
Location: Anaheim, CA
Posts: 32,409
Quote:
Originally Posted by D_Odds View Post
Would/could/should 'of' should not just be banned, but drones should be sent to eliminate this scourge.


Probably best if this particular tangent be allowed to die off; Miller did start this thread seriously asking for input from us. I caught the “reign in” gaffe in the OP, and I couldn’t resist twitting him about it, but I would be ashamed if my little bit of levity were to derail what has the potential to be a substantive contribution to the improvement of the forum.

Last edited by kaylasdad99; 11-27-2019 at 04:57 PM.
  #14  
Old 11-27-2019, 05:06 PM
SmartAleq's Avatar
SmartAleq is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: PDXLNT
Posts: 5,473
I think The Pit is just fine--it's some of the usual assholes who make it stink so badly. I too look at the Pit as GD with being able to tell someone they're a goddamned fucking idiot but I would never call someone a kiddy fiddler unless--and this is important--they admitted to kiddy fiddling. Then the gloves come off. All these namby pamby rules about "attack the post but never the poster" are fucking stupid and needlessly arcane and not being able to call a liar a liar when they're lying or a troll a troll when they're trolling is a big part of why this place sucks so much.

There's a poster here who obviously does not get my sense of humor and pedantically picks at the most innocuous of my posts trying to do some sort of one-upmanship or whatever the fuck he thinks he's doing and it would be awesome to be able to say "Dude, sorry you're too stupid to get this joke so how about you just back the fuck off my dick, okay?" whenever the stupid fuck does it but noooooooooooo, that's too mean and nasty onoz. If he did it in the Pit though, I could FINALLY just set the fucking idiot straight right off the bat and maybe, just maybe, get the idiot to understand why what he does is dumb and he should stop. He doesn't post much in the Pit though so I'd have to set up a whole 'nother thread to tell the idiot why he's an idiot and it's a lot like rubbing a puppy's nose in its shit. Doesn't work, gets shit everywhere, dog never does figure it out.

Anyway, neither here nor there but just felt vent-y. It would be nice though, if Pit modes would take reports of misogyny and racism seriously even in the Pit and get the usual assholes to back the fuck off that shit. That would be awesome. I keep saying y'all need to take a page from Giraffe's book and set up a Box so that asshole troublemakers can be relegated forcibly to the status of "look but no touch" for whatever period of time is necessary to get them to stop being flatulently unpleasant everywhere they go. Boxing doesn't have to be lengthy to have a salubrious effect, either, because you box someone for 2-3 hours while a particularly busy thread is developing and they can't disrupt it until it's moved on and by that time they just look like a whiny little bitch when they get out of the Box and try to start their shit up again. The organic flow of the thread goes on sans excessive mode intervention, the disruption and derailing doesn't happen and the usual assholes pretty quickly learn to behave themselves so they can continue spewing. Or they get Boxed forever and they can STILL post--just not wherever they want. Why you guys are so fixated against something so simple and proven effective I do not know. It's like ignoring the four out of five dentists who recommend toothpaste because you've always brushed your teeth with dogshit and nobody's gonna change tradition, by gum!
  #15  
Old 11-27-2019, 05:11 PM
bucketybuck is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Ireland
Posts: 3,248
Quote:
The previous "(almost) Anything Goes" policy was a result of me trying to find a bright line that didn't rely on my personal opinion about what was "too far," and that hasn't worked out great.
Whats wrong with using your personal opinion?

Personally I would prefer mods who don't get wrapped up in trying to please everybody, not least because it will never happen anyway. There doesn't need to be fancy rules beyond "Don't be a jerk", and there doesn't need to be a standard beyond "You'll know it when you see it".

So let people fuck and bitch and insult each other all they want, 99% of the time it will just be hot air and pretty meaningless. And that 1% of the time where somebody goes too far just use your own judgement, smack them down and make no apologies for it.
  #16  
Old 11-27-2019, 05:16 PM
margin is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 1,289
Quote:
Originally Posted by puzzlegal View Post
I don't want to be reprehensible in the pit, or anywhere else. But how reprehensible do I think you should allow other posters to be...

I think you should be able to call another poster a racist, or a bigot, or accuse them of other forms of insensitivity. I feel that's a valuable "release valve" while stuff is being litigated more politely elsewhere.

I think you should be allowed to call another poster stupid, or pigheaded, or uninformed, or a liar or otherwise make nasty statements about the quality of the information/opinions they share. Ditto.

Should you be allowed to accuse other posters of illegal behavior? (Pedophilia? Rape? Assault? I dunno, despite your stated rules, I'd like to see examples of where that's been done to get a sense of how it might play out.

I can't see any particular reason to insult someone else's kids. Or their parents or spice or sibs, for that matter, unless they somehow explicitly invite that.

I'm not sure what exactly you mean by "personal trauma". Again, I'd want examples to have a better idea of how that plays out. Do you mean like calling someone a slut?

I'm a combat veteran with PTSD who has talked about it openly for years in an effort to destigmatize it. I've ranted here on the Dope about how dealing with the VA has probably made my PTSD worse. ("Women aren't in combat," for example.) Shodan wasn't even talking to me when he added a cheery, "Hi, margin, you've been gone for a while! Make any friends in the psych ward?" (Paraphrase. I ain't goin' back to look, thanks.)

One can be crazy, but that doesn't mean you're stupid, which is what that type of remark is supposed to imply. I had a former friend say, "She has PTSD, just ignore her when she gets upset." It's also sadistic, rubbing salt in a wound that keeps getting salt opened up by the people who promised to heal it.

Insult somebody's arguments, grammar, choice of outfits, manner of meeting dates, attractions to whatever farm animal or mollusks of their dreams, the possible intricacies of having a family wreath than a family tree, but don't attack things that the other poster cannot change, or things for which they are oppressed by bigots-----race, skin color, religion, sexuality, and so on. Don't punch down. Stick to stuff that represents choices and decisions.

I think what we're looking for here is a better category of insult, and a higher degree of fluency in profanity. Not only will this provide the desired pressure-valve function, it will also amuse and awe the bystanders. I think. I find that these days my profanity reserves have been depleted and cannot be replenished.

Just my humble musings on the topic. (Team profanity! Rah rah motherfuckers!)
__________________
They delight in acting in bad faith, since they seek not to persuade by sound argument but to intimidate and disconcert. If you press them too closely, they will abruptly fall silent, loftily indicating by some phrase that the time for argument is past.
  #17  
Old 11-27-2019, 05:48 PM
puzzlegal's Avatar
puzzlegal is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 5,042
Thanks, margin and kaylasdad99.
  #18  
Old 11-27-2019, 05:55 PM
What Exit?'s Avatar
What Exit? is online now
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Central NJ (near Bree)
Posts: 29,578
Pretty much like what you had in the Op Miller, I don't agree with most of what I read in Dropo's post but got tired of reading it also.

Many of the best debates have actually been in the pit. I would like to see that continue. Smaller changes are probably better and please don't try to define to much, leave it as loose as possible to avoid rules lawyering.
  #19  
Old 11-27-2019, 06:13 PM
octopus's Avatar
octopus is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Posts: 9,471
What a very challenging question and while I'm not the biggest fan of the existence of the Pit if the Pit is to exist, outside of hate speech, which is it's own debate, I'm not a huge fan of legislating exactly how far is too far with an insult.

Full disclosure though: I have insulted folks in retrospect I thought went too far. I have also insulted folks in language that is becoming more and more unacceptable even though I grew up hearing it. Retard is becoming more and more unacceptable even though idiot, moron, stupid, etc. mean the same thing. They are all attacks on one's innate intellect. That's a pretty vicious attack if you think about it. One can't change how they were born.

I also feel it's poor form to use people's pictures and vulnerable stories as an attack form. To paraphrase Ed, it's a dick move but not jerkish for the purpose of being warnable. And really, that's the genesis of my beef. I also think Huey got treated a bit unfairly as well.

I mean, the purpose of insulting folks is what, exactly? Can you answer that question? It sure the hell isn't an exercise in friend making or compromise reaching. It's what you do when you are mad enough to fight. So if you are using words as weapons if they work too effectively that's suddenly a problem? I'm not sure I agree with that.

However, if you really know someone has cancer, I wouldn't use that as an attack. That's heartless and cruel. That's a real person on the other side of the screen and shitty attacks like that are unnecessary. Unnecessary, but, up until this recent change, allowable.

Again, this is personal preference and I don't see how in a forum of this nature where people are posting in a fashion to insult others that you can calibrate acceptable insults on a case by case basis considering every interaction, taking into account what information may or may not have been shared, including off board information as that was brought up with regards to the Shodan-Margin thing and be fair or consistent.

I also think it's very odd that we can knowingly call the lady folks cunts which in my neck of the woods is a bit worse than calling anyone of any skin complexion a primate.

But you want kinder and gentler?

I guess a pit full of eat shit, asshole and cactus fucking is one way to go about it. Whatever the case is and whatever the rules are don't take popular outrage into account.

Anyways Miller, thanks for the opportunity to provide some somewhat coherent feedback. I believe your heart is in the right place and that means a lot.

Last edited by octopus; 11-27-2019 at 06:15 PM.
  #20  
Old 11-27-2019, 06:30 PM
Kimstu is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Posts: 23,046
Quote:
Originally Posted by octopus
I also think it's very odd that we can knowingly call the lady folks cunts which in my neck of the woods is a bit worse than calling anyone of any skin complexion a primate.
AIUI, we may call anyone of any gender a "cunt" in its originally British and basically non-gendered sense of "despicable person", "shitheel", "asshole", "twat", etc. I'm not sure whether we could in fact get away with calling a female poster a "cunt" in its American sense of "worthless trashy sexually promiscuous woman", a la Tony Manero in Saturday Night Fever. If not, I'm not sure how the mods would adjudicate that distinction.

Last edited by Kimstu; 11-27-2019 at 06:30 PM.
  #21  
Old 11-27-2019, 06:35 PM
Miller's Avatar
Miller is offline
Sith Mod
Moderator
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: Bear Flag Republic
Posts: 44,654
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kimstu View Post
AIUI, we may call anyone of any gender a "cunt" in its originally British and basically non-gendered sense of "despicable person", "shitheel", "asshole", "twat", etc. I'm not sure whether we could in fact get away with calling a female poster a "cunt" in its American sense of "worthless trashy sexually promiscuous woman", a la Tony Manero in Saturday Night Fever. If not, I'm not sure how the mods would adjudicate that distinction.
I'm not sure how I'd make the distinction, tbh. What's the second one look like, beyond just saying, "You're a cunt, Karen"?
  #22  
Old 11-27-2019, 06:50 PM
Kimstu is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Posts: 23,046
Quote:
Originally Posted by Miller View Post
I'm not sure how I'd make the distinction, tbh. What's the second one look like, beyond just saying, "You're a cunt, Karen"?
Well, the way I've heard it described, which is not a 100% reliable discriminator, is that if the insult would still make contextual sense if you replaced the word "cunt" with "diseased prostitute", you're using "cunt" in the American sense. If it wouldn't, then that's the British sense.

"My boss can really be a dictatorial diseased prostitute sometimes": not meaningful, hence British sense.

"That dumb diseased prostitute acts like she's worth anything": still meaningful, American sense.
  #23  
Old 11-27-2019, 06:57 PM
kaylasdad99 is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Sep 1999
Location: Anaheim, CA
Posts: 32,409
Quote:
Originally Posted by Miller View Post
I'm not sure how I'd make the distinction, tbh. What's the second one look like, beyond just saying, "You're a cunt, Karen"?
I’ve always taken the uglier, American usage as implying that a woman is trashy and worthless simply by virtue of HAVING one; no implication of promiscuity necessary.

So, just to be on the safe side, I’d personally steer clear of finding it (marginally) acceptable when applied to any woman; it’s distasteful to me, but as a bog-standard vulgarism it strikes me as being in a class with “son of a bitch” and “bastard,” neither of which is commonly deployed against the fairer sex.
  #24  
Old 11-27-2019, 06:59 PM
Velocity is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Posts: 15,837
Quote:
Originally Posted by Miller View Post
I don't see saying "You're a pedophile" as necessarily worse than, "You're a motherfucker.")
The difference between these two things is that "motherfucker" is generally understood to be nothing more than a simple insult - it's not a serious claim that someone fucks his mom. Calling someone a pedophile, though, is generally much more of a specific, serious, actual accusation, and more defamatory for that reason.
  #25  
Old 11-27-2019, 07:00 PM
thorny locust's Avatar
thorny locust is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Location: Upstate New York
Posts: 1,487
This one might be impractical to enforce, but:

How about we can call a poster a troll, a bigot, a racist, a mysogynist, a liar, willfully ignorant, a creep, a pedophile, or whatever --

as long as it's relevant to the behavior we're calling out the poster for.

If somebody posts that they like hiring prostitutes who look as young as possible, in circumstances in which they can't be sure of actual age: pit them and call them a pedophile. If somebody persistently or glaringly says something racist: pit them and call them a racist. If somebody keeps derailing threads: call them a troll or a jerk. If somebody keeps posting what you think is obviously untrue: pit them and call them a liar, or willfully ignorant, or, if you must, stupid.

But if they're being pitted for possibly lying, you can call them a liar or a troll or willfully ignorant -- any of which may be relevant -- but don't call them a pedophile, barring some actual reason to think that they might be one. If they're being pitted for mysogyny, calling them a mysogynist or a general bigot or willfully ignorant can be relevant -- but don't call them a racist unless there's some reason to think they may also be a racist. If they're being pitted for saying they'd throw out their kid if the kid were trans, accuse them of bad parenting all you want, as well as of bigotry in the form of transphobia; but if whatever they're being pitted for has nothing to do with parenting, then don't call them child abusers. And so on.

As far as calling people fuckheads and so on: I don't really see that it serves a useful purpose; but I don't see that it does much harm as long as the terms used are on the level of casual insult, rather than screamingly over the line, for everybody. Problem is, that a number of them fall on one side of the line in some social groups and on the other in other groups; and there are people from a lot of places and a lot of cultures on this board. How badly do people want to be even inadvertent jerks?
  #26  
Old 11-27-2019, 07:04 PM
Velocity is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Posts: 15,837
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dropo View Post
I’m sure I haven’t thought this through well enough, but what if the Pit only had one thread reserved solely for pitting other posters and insult contests between posters. No other discussion would be allowed. Any topic outside those parameters that would normally go in the Pit would have to find a home elsewhere on the board and be subject to the usual rules.

Non-political rants against institutions, businesses and (off-board) personalities could go in IMHO or MPSIMS; politically based rants could go in Elections, which could be retitled “Politics” (as a number of posters have suggested in the past), a name every bit as dull and unimaginative as “Elections.” Alternatively, it could be called something like “The Ruling Class” or even “The Ruling Voice” and deal political issues and leaders.
I like Dropo's suggestion here. The Pit should serve mainly as a WWE-style cage for Dopers to go against each other. The other things, like rants about Trump, mass shootings, healthcare or the treatment of migrants should go elsewhere.
  #27  
Old 11-27-2019, 08:15 PM
Left Hand of Dorkness's Avatar
Left Hand of Dorkness is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: May 1999
Location: at the right hand of cool
Posts: 41,820
I wanna take it sideways.

Fewer rules, but more enforcement of "don't be a jerk," with a new standard being, "Goddamn, you suck."

People can post whatever they want here. But if it becomes clear to you that they're just a terrible person, you ban them. Maybe they're being terrible by poking people right in the trauma. Maybe they're being terrible by being supercilious trolls. Maybe they're being terrible by insisting on pedantic rules-parsing down to the individual electron. Whatever: in the Pit, they're revealing themselves to be awful posters, and they got to go.

Instead of the lawful neutral modding elsewhere, moderate the pit chaotic good.

Last edited by Left Hand of Dorkness; 11-27-2019 at 08:16 PM.
  #28  
Old 11-27-2019, 08:57 PM
Bryan Ekers's Avatar
Bryan Ekers is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Montreal, QC
Posts: 59,483
The mandatory Pit uniform should include flame-retardant big-boy pants.
__________________
Don't worry about the end of Inception. We have top men working on it right now. Top. Men.
  #29  
Old 11-27-2019, 08:57 PM
kaylasdad99 is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Sep 1999
Location: Anaheim, CA
Posts: 32,409
Quote:
Originally Posted by Velocity View Post
I like Dropo's suggestion here. The Pit should serve mainly as a WWE-style cage for Dopers to go against each other. The other things, like rants about Trump, mass shootings, healthcare or the treatment of migrants should go elsewhere.
At the very LEAST, we'd need to have "rounds," as it were, so people could keep up with the thousands of posts that would accumulate. Maybe start a new one each week.

On the whole, I don't much think of the idea.
  #30  
Old 11-27-2019, 09:04 PM
Nava is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Hey! I'm located! WOOOOW!
Posts: 43,088
Quote:
Originally Posted by Miller View Post
(For the record, yes, actual pedophiles bother me, but I don't see saying "You're a pedophile" as necessarily worse than, "You're a motherfucker.")
I don't see them as one more serious than the other either, but from anybody other than an American it would be a "you don't repeat that outside"-level insult. Or in my case "I'm not talking to you again, ever" insult, as the last time I voluntarily got into a fistfight I was 10yo. Then again there's musicians to whom I never listen live because they pepper their addresses to the public with equivalent language and that makes me want to answer back "motherfucker your inbred nonworking dick, you and I have never shared so much as a bag of potato chips so fuck off with the 'we're all pals here' insults", so it's possible I'm the one being a prude.

From my point of view it's never kosher to insult a private person who can't defend themselves, whether poster's minor child or adult anything. At the same time, the right to whine is universal, a diagnostic is not an insult and as for public figures and when it's for their public behavior, go at them. Calling Mel Gibson an anti-semite (diagnosis), Trump a sexual abuser (self-reported), or your boss a controlling jerk/your subordinate a lazy good for nothing/your coworker a thieving imbecile (mini-rants, work rants) are fine.
__________________
Some people knew how to kill a conversation. Cura, on the other hand, could make it wish it had never been born.
  #31  
Old 11-27-2019, 09:14 PM
Sherrerd's Avatar
Sherrerd is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 7,331
Quote:
Originally Posted by kaylasdad99 View Post
At the very LEAST, we'd need to have "rounds," as it were, so people could keep up with the thousands of posts that would accumulate. Maybe start a new one each week.

On the whole, I don't much think of the idea.
Yeah, I don't see how it would work, given that it would basically excise context from the insults. It's after some period of back-and-forth on a particular topic that the urge to post an insult would arise, after all. If there are twenty posts back-and-forth in a thread on (say) 'super-fans of various Dem candidates,' and then one person posts a link to the Insult Thread....

....well, I guess it would work in some fashion. But I can't see how it would be an improvement on just calling one's opponent a self-absorbed parochial fool (or whatever) in the original thread.
  #32  
Old 11-27-2019, 09:18 PM
pool is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Inside
Posts: 4,665
I think family members should be off limits, other than that don't really care.
__________________
"You can do anything you set your mind to...But money helps"

Last edited by pool; 11-27-2019 at 09:18 PM.
  #33  
Old 11-27-2019, 09:19 PM
crowmanyclouds's Avatar
crowmanyclouds is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: ... hiding in my room ...
Posts: 4,769
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kimstu View Post
Yeah, as someone who posts a lot in the Pit but treats it more like a version of Great Debates where other people can lose their tempers if they want to, I don't have a problem with the way it's been moderated so far.

I agree that the general principle of permitting insults and invective, but not outright hate speech or nasty gossip about off-board personal lives, is a good one. But I have no idea what specific policies would do the best job of implementing it.
This. (And what Left Hand of Dorkness said while I was slowly typing this.)

If,
GD is philosophical discussions over cigars and brandy in the study where all fights are limited to 'Marquess of Queensberry Rules'.
Then,
The Pit is (often is) philosophical discussions at the pub with occasional fist fights and bloodied noses . . . but when someone busts a bottle to 'cut a bitch' everyone wants that person banned from the pub.

Miller, as Giraffe before him, 'gets' this part of the board and their moderation is/was exemplary.

CMC fnord!

Last edited by crowmanyclouds; 11-27-2019 at 09:20 PM.
  #34  
Old 11-27-2019, 09:57 PM
octopus's Avatar
octopus is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Posts: 9,471
There should be no sanction for using the Pit more effectively than another. Nobody is forced to read it as I've been told multiple times.
  #35  
Old 11-27-2019, 10:06 PM
puzzlegal's Avatar
puzzlegal is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 5,042
I see how insulting other posters is different from losing your temper about some external thing, but I haven't had any trouble with them both being in the same forum. If we are rearranging forum content, I'd prefer to have "elections" renamed "politics" since I am genuinely confused as to how political topics are supposed to be handled here.
  #36  
Old 11-28-2019, 12:10 AM
MrDibble's Avatar
MrDibble is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Cape Town, South Africa &
Posts: 26,949
Quote:
Originally Posted by Miller View Post
I want to make attacking someone over deep personal trauma out-of-bounds, but that's going to necessarily be a lot of subjective decisions on my part. I've certainly seen a lot of people report posts because they were "traumatized" by the most picayune insults, or even simply criticism and disagreement. On the other hand, as an able-bodied white guy, there are entire oceans of trauma out there of which I have only the vaguest understanding.
I think the standard should be - if a cross-section of other people, not just the insulted poster or their political fellow travellers, are posting or reporting that something crossed the line, that should suffice.

Quote:
Someone posting about how they're not vaccinating their kids deserve to be roasted at least a little, for example. I think there's also some value in the idea that, if you introduce your kids into a debate, you're inviting commentary on your relationship with them.
Absolutely agree.
Quote:
Calling other posters "pedophiles"
I don't see saying "You're a pedophile" as necessarily worse than, "You're a motherfucker.")
Calling someone a motherfucker is just swearing at them, it is not saying they literally fuck their own mother. I don't think it's the same thing. I see it this way: People have been banned from the site for paedophilia, no-one's been banned for incest. Having said that, you're right about retaining the calling out of skeevy posting.

Overall, I think you're the best Mod left here, and think you are on the right track.

Last edited by MrDibble; 11-28-2019 at 12:10 AM.
  #37  
Old 11-28-2019, 02:19 AM
D'Anconia is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 4,672
Quote:
Originally Posted by margin View Post
Shodan wasn't even talking to me when he added a cheery, "Hi, margin, you've been gone for a while! Make any friends in the psych ward?" (Paraphrase. I ain't goin' back to look, thanks.
I thought the moderator asked us not to re-litigate previous issues?
  #38  
Old 11-28-2019, 03:02 AM
MrDibble's Avatar
MrDibble is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Cape Town, South Africa &
Posts: 26,949
Quote:
Originally Posted by D'Anconia View Post
I thought the moderator asked us not to re-litigate previous issues?
And I'm sure you're aware of the rule against junior modding, yet here we are.
  #39  
Old 11-28-2019, 05:16 AM
AHunter3's Avatar
AHunter3 is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: NY (Manhattan) NY USA
Posts: 20,768
I like it the way it is.
  #40  
Old 11-28-2019, 10:06 AM
thorny locust's Avatar
thorny locust is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Location: Upstate New York
Posts: 1,487
Quote:
Originally Posted by octopus View Post
There should be no sanction for using the Pit more effectively than another. .
"More effectively"? What does that mean?
  #41  
Old 11-28-2019, 10:40 AM
racepug is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Snohomish County, WA
Posts: 1,251
I never TRY to be "reprehensible." That hasn't stopped me from being given warnings (at least once by someone who, apparently, is no longer a moderator here). Story of my life, though - I'm the kind of person who tries his best to get along with others but still gets snapped at, lectured, and counseled while other people who, frankly, are comPLETE jerks, manage to go their whole life without ever getting slapped down. So be it.
  #42  
Old 11-28-2019, 11:03 AM
Gatopescado is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: on your last raw nerve
Posts: 22,828
Quote:
Originally Posted by steatopygia View Post
I'm fine with the way you have been doing things.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bryan Ekers View Post
The mandatory Pit uniform should include flame-retardant big-boy pants.
Quote:
Originally Posted by AHunter3 View Post
I like it the way it is.
Yep. Pit is fine how it is, and Miller does a good job of not over-modding. If you can't take the heat, stay out of the Pitchen.

These are just words.
  #43  
Old 11-28-2019, 02:12 PM
Bryan Ekers's Avatar
Bryan Ekers is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Montreal, QC
Posts: 59,483
Heck, I'd vote to drop restrictions on flaming posters who've been banned. Fuck this "they're not here to defend themselves" shit. It's their own fault they're not here. Keep the ATMB announcements of the bans short and neutral, but let the ripbutes run wild in the Pit.
__________________
Don't worry about the end of Inception. We have top men working on it right now. Top. Men.
  #44  
Old 11-28-2019, 05:16 PM
CarnalK's Avatar
CarnalK is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Posts: 18,806
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bryan Ekers View Post
Heck, I'd vote to drop restrictions on flaming posters who've been banned. Fuck this "they're not here to defend themselves" shit. It's their own fault they're not here. Keep the ATMB announcements of the bans short and neutral, but let the ripbutes run wild in the Pit.
Despite dearly departed Liberal's laments, I think the mods quash that because it antagonizes bannees to sock up and defend themselves.

I'm not sure what changes I'd want but I do appreciate Miller's discomfort in defending super shitty stuff. I guess a "no attacking intrinsic/unchangeable characteristics" type rule.
  #45  
Old 11-28-2019, 05:30 PM
margin is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 1,289
Quote:
Originally Posted by D'Anconia View Post
I thought the moderator asked us not to re-litigate previous issues?
There was confusion as to the details.
__________________
They delight in acting in bad faith, since they seek not to persuade by sound argument but to intimidate and disconcert. If you press them too closely, they will abruptly fall silent, loftily indicating by some phrase that the time for argument is past.
  #46  
Old 11-28-2019, 08:12 PM
Isosleepy's Avatar
Isosleepy is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jul 1999
Location: Pittsburgh
Posts: 1,935
I would strongly prefer you continue modding as before. I think certain things are reprehensible: talking about a person needing or having needed help with a mental or cognitive issue is beyond the pale for me, for example. But that would be a minefield to mod, or restrictions would be too broad for the pit to function. When posters go beyond the pale, other posters can and do call them out on it. That should be the control mechanism. The pit is different from other fora. And you can have a great time on the SDMB without ever being in the pit, if you are not comfortable with the goings on. There are chunks of time where I don’t want to read it, let alone participate. And then others when I do.

Last edited by Isosleepy; 11-28-2019 at 08:16 PM.
  #47  
Old 11-28-2019, 09:33 PM
kaylasdad99 is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Sep 1999
Location: Anaheim, CA
Posts: 32,409
Quote:
Originally Posted by D'Anconia View Post
I thought the moderator asked us not to re-litigate previous issues?
While Miller is a moderator, it strikes me that (his exploiting of his mod powers to sticky the thread aside), his intent as the OP was for his preferences to be treated the same as those of a non-staff OP.

Perfectly happy to be shown to be mistaken in this regard.

That said, yes he did express that preference, and I, for one, would prefer that it be respected.
  #48  
Old 11-28-2019, 10:06 PM
kaylasdad99 is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Sep 1999
Location: Anaheim, CA
Posts: 32,409
Quote:
Originally Posted by kaylasdad99 View Post
While Miller is a moderator, it strikes me that (his exploiting of his mod powers to sticky the thread aside), his intent as the OP was for his preferences to be treated the same as those of a non-staff OP.

Perfectly happy to be shown to be mistaken in this regard.

That said, yes he did express that preference, and I, for one, would prefer that it be respected.
ALSO that said, you’re free to report margin’s [what you appear to be implying] “infraction,” should the inspiration strike you, D’Anconia...
  #49  
Old 11-28-2019, 10:19 PM
Oredigger77 is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Back at 5,280
Posts: 5,116
I really enjoy the pit as it is, especially after the last rule change to bring back motherfucker. I'm not big on insulting other posters but I enjoy reading the threads here. I like the way Miller mods it currently and wouldn't want a change. If anything I'd like the ATMB response to people bitching about getting their feelings hurt to be "stay out of the pit you pussy".
  #50  
Old 11-29-2019, 12:08 AM
CarnalK's Avatar
CarnalK is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Posts: 18,806
For your amusement:
The Rules of Engagement
Quote:
Originally Posted by TubaDiva
Remember all those times we said, "hey, why don't you take that outside?" Well, here's where you go. <g>

No, really. This is where you go for all those verbal fistfights. When a thread veers from debate and/or discussion into personal attack, sneering insults, and "Yo Mommas," y'all should step outside to this thread.

Remember, although AOL's Terms of Service do not usually apply and we will give you SOME latitude, this is no back alley and you will be expected to be if not civil at least semi-reasonable. Pure evil and/or rants won't fly -- unless they're really entertaining.
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 09:45 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

Send questions for Cecil Adams to: cecil@straightdope.com

Send comments about this website to: webmaster@straightdope.com

Terms of Use / Privacy Policy

Advertise on the Straight Dope!
(Your direct line to thousands of the smartest, hippest people on the planet, plus a few total dipsticks.)

Copyright © 2019 STM Reader, LLC.

 
Copyright © 2017