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Old 10-09-2019, 04:12 PM
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Is there a list of allowable rhetorical devices?


In reference to this most-odd bit of moderating (among many lately):
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bone
I've had enough of this type of epiplexis. If you wish to say you think finding facts is important, feel free to do so. Framing a statement of this nature in the form of a question doesn't transform the substance from anything but a personal comment, and often times an insult. Enough.
That's pretty damn capricious.

With all due respect, you're looking for an excuse here, Bone, and hardly for the first time, sadly. Questioning the reason for making a post is not a "personal insult". There are precious few ways that we mortals are still allowed to use to suggest that another poster is attempting to derail a thread, by various forms of JAQ'ing and sealioning, without also being accused of junior modding by mods who refuse to moderate those who are doing so. So what rhetorical devices remain on the acceptable list, and can we see it?
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Old 10-09-2019, 05:24 PM
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Originally Posted by ElvisL1ves View Post
There are precious few ways that we mortals are still allowed to use to suggest that another poster is attempting to derail a thread...
Don't do that.

In my opinion, that's what a jerk would do. Don't be a jerk, and don't suggest that a poster participates in a thread with ill-intent.

~Max
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Old 10-09-2019, 05:26 PM
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So what rhetorical devices remain on the acceptable list, and can we see it?
Bone can confirm, but I don't see anything wrong with erotesis, hypophora, or ratiocinatio.
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Old 10-09-2019, 05:37 PM
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I'm actually okay with such moderating--as long as it is consistent. If people have to back up their claims that someone is arguing in bad faith, then that should include another trend that I have seen Bone himself employ: accusing posters of being unable to accept that other points of view--often made political by directing it towards liberals.

This argument is made without any actual evidence that such is occurring in the thread, and avoids actually making the counterargument so that it can be left to scrutiny. It's just a way of going after the posters because you don't like their argument.

I'm not a big fan of these short, pithy replies that contain no actual argument, and I don't think they have any place in GD. But it needs to be consistent, and not just the argument mentioned in the OP, which is more often directed towards conservative posters than liberals. It has to go both ways to be fair.
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Old 10-09-2019, 05:47 PM
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Don't do that.

In my opinion, that's what a jerk would do. Don't be a jerk, and don't suggest that a poster participates in a thread with ill-intent.
I totally disagree. The board is lousy (as in lice-ridden) with posters who participate in threads with "ill-intent." The mods allow them to do so despite years of protests. What exactly would you suggest we do when afflicted this way?

I see nothing wrong with Elvis' epiplexis in that thread. On the contrary, I think in the future Bone should direct his demands for "enough" towards the people whose behavior warrants it more.
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Old 10-09-2019, 05:48 PM
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Don't do that.

In my opinion, that's what a jerk would do. Don't be a jerk, and don't suggest that a poster participates in a thread with ill-intent.

~Max
This is a horrible idea. It is absolutely vital to be able to point out when someone is interacting in bad faith in any debate. Someone using bad tactics will win every time if the other side can't point it out.

We have a case study with the alt right: they're clearly wrong with their bigotry and racism, but they use bad tactics to push their agenda, and it works, despite everyone knowing that racism is wrong.

The issue where I agree with the moderation is that such a claim requires evidence. You should not be able to just attack the character of the poster. You should have to show evidence of their bad faith arguments.

That is, as long as such goes both ways, as I say in my other reply. You can't outlaw the form of this informal fallacy that is used against conservatives most often, and leave out the ones used against liberals most often.

You want to accuse someone of not arguing in good faith, you need evidence their arguments are bogus. Not just character assassination.

Last edited by BigT; 10-09-2019 at 05:49 PM.
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Old 10-09-2019, 05:53 PM
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I totally disagree. The board is lousy (as in lice-ridden) with posters who participate in threads with "ill-intent." The mods allow them to do so despite years of protests. What exactly would you suggest we do when afflicted this way?
If you have a case to make, I don't see why you need to make it in public versus by private message to the moderators (or the report function).

Except in the Pit, I suppose. I'm not sure if such accusations are fair game there.

Then again, I haven't been here but for a few months, so I don't have the wisdom with regards to the moderation that you and other posters have earned.

~Max

Last edited by Max S.; 10-09-2019 at 05:54 PM. Reason: removed ambiguity as to who would receive the private message
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Old 10-09-2019, 05:56 PM
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Bone can confirm, but I don't see anything wrong with erotesis, hypophora, or ratiocinatio.
Aren't those the Three Musketeers?
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Old 10-09-2019, 07:32 PM
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If you have a case to make, I don't see why you need to make it in public versus by private message to the moderators (or the report function).
Because the moderators won't do anything about it, so there's no point. Thus the "years of protests" comment.
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Old 10-09-2019, 07:36 PM
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Funny, when I read the moderated comment, I thought it was a great way to elicit an interesting counter-argument.

If someone says, "You do think finding the facts is important, don't you?" that potentially leads into a worthwhile response. For example, "Of course I do, but what you are suggesting is not going to uncover the facts, because..." Or perhaps, "You are missing the point; upholding procedures take precedence over fact-finding in this situation because if we destroy precedent, then ..."

Whatever. If someone said that to me, and I had genuine beliefs and arguments contrary to those of the person directing the comment at me, I'd be genuinely motivated to respond constructively. (To be fair, though, I personally virtually never participate in debates here, so what I would think or do is not much of a data point.)
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Old 10-09-2019, 10:13 PM
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Aren't those the Three Musketeers?
They're either the Furies or the Amenities, I forget which.
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Old 10-09-2019, 10:58 PM
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If you have a case to make, I don't see why you need to make it in public versus by private message to the moderators (or the report function).
For years, women protested against the misogynistic comments that far too many men casually posted without consequences. Then the women figuratively stood up, took center stage, and yelled loudly. Surprise, surprise, the mods did a total turnaround and began, shock, moderating those comments. The Usual Suspects, and yes, they were indeed those and everybody knew their names, whined bitterly and were told to stuff it. Some were banned, some left, some got careful, and the board got a bit better, though not perfect.

We all know who the other set of Usual Suspects are. I've reported posts and received no reaction from the mods. Others have as well. Not only do the mods not take action against them, they protect them and call out those who oppose aloud. This is behavior extremely similar to what the women of the Dope long despaired about.

If you're new enough not to understand the coded language I'm using, then this post may be gibberish. Code is all that is allowed in ATMB. I'm betting that the mods can decipher me. You there, in the mod loop, can you hear me now?
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Old 10-09-2019, 11:10 PM
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I appreciate Bone’s efforts to reduce the snark index of threads in fora that are better served being low on that scale.

It wasn’t even a warning; it was a heads up that continued similar snark in that forum would get one.

That said even Elections cannot be completely free of snark and that specific bit on its own seems not over any reasonable line. I’m not tracking the op’s ourve though ... if the poster has a record of skating close that would be another circumstance. A mention of thin ice ahead would be appropriate.
  #14  
Old 10-09-2019, 11:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ElvisL1ves View Post
There are precious few ways that we mortals are still allowed to use to suggest that another poster is attempting to derail a thread, by various forms of JAQ'ing and sealioning, without also being accused of junior modding by mods who refuse to moderate those who are doing so. So what rhetorical devices remain on the acceptable list, and can we see it?
This here is revealing of the motivations for the types of posts I was referring to. Rather than trying to find clever ways to get as close to the line as possible, I suggest arguing the merits. If you continue to try and push the line, you will step over it from time to time.

So to answer your question, there is no list, so you may not see what doesn't exist.

Ultimately the issue is one of personal insults. Trying to avoid sanction by recasting an insult in the form of a question is no defense to violating the rule against insults. 'You're not a liar are you? You're not stupid are you? You aren't dumb enough to believe that right?' All of these are of similar form, though of course a hair less subtle than some of your other offerings.

So while the rule against insults remains unchanged, I'm giving you the courtesy of letting you know that the aforementioned tactic to attempt to offer insults will also receive sanction. If you are not insulting other posters then there is no behavior modification necessary. Though given 6 of your last 7 warnings were for personal insults, take this as a caution that behavior modification may be necessary.

Last edited by Bone; 10-09-2019 at 11:25 PM.
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Old 10-10-2019, 12:05 AM
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But as long as you’re a Trump supporter, you’re allowed to say “Nuke Mecca!” and not get so much as a warning. Nope, no double standard here!
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Old 10-10-2019, 12:17 AM
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You wouldn't like to see Mecca nuked, would you?
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Old 10-10-2019, 12:46 AM
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But as long as you’re a Trump supporter, you’re allowed to say “Nuke Mecca!” and not get so much as a warning. Nope, no double standard here!
I’m on board with that! They make those candy wafers that taste like chalk, right?

Oh, wait no, that’s Necco. I don’t advocate bombing Mecca until I know how bad their candy is.

On a serious note, I imagine a statement like that could get a warning or note if it is part of a pattern of disruption, was a threadshit, was used in a particularly insensitive way (say a poster is expressing grief over the death of a close Muslim friend), or so on. But considering that a potentially incendiary remark like that is not going to be a personal insult this kind of gripe is a non sequitur.

Last edited by Atamasama; 10-10-2019 at 12:47 AM.
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Old 10-10-2019, 02:00 AM
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If you have a case to make, I don't see why you need to make it in public versus by private message to the moderators (or the report function).
Because that's not how public debate is supposed to work.
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Old 10-10-2019, 02:02 AM
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I appreciate Bone’s efforts to reduce the snark index of threads in fora that are better served being low on that scale.

It wasn’t even a warning; it was a heads up that continued similar snark in that forum would get one.
Rhetoric is not snark.
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Old 10-10-2019, 02:05 AM
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Ultimately the issue is one of personal insults. Trying to avoid sanction by recasting an insult in the form of a question is no defense to violating the rule against insults. 'You're not a liar are you? You're not stupid are you? You aren't dumb enough to believe that right?' All of these are of similar form, though of course a hair less subtle than some of your other offerings.
"You don't care about finding facts" is a moddable personal insult now, on a par with "you're stupid" and "you're a liar"? Fuck that noise.

Last edited by MrDibble; 10-10-2019 at 02:08 AM.
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Old 10-10-2019, 06:51 AM
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I'm not quite sure I understand your position, ElvisLives. Are you saying that epiplexis in general should be an acceptable rhetorical device, that certain instances of it are acceptable, or that the statement in question doesn't really qualify as such in the first place?

"Have you always been this naive and uninformed?" I think most people would agree that is unacceptable, so accepting epiplexis in general is pretty much eliminated as a viable choice. If one feels that "certain instances" of it are acceptable, the problem becomes in defining where the line is between what is and what is not acceptable. I think that would be a never ending bone of contention, to be honest. In the case of the latter possibility, some clarification on your part would be helpful.
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Old 10-10-2019, 07:49 AM
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Rhetoric is not snark.
A true statement. Of no relevance but true.

Rhetoric can be used to communicate profound truths ... or snark ... or even hate speech.

You don’t think the mod comment was for use of rhetoric, do you?

The intention of that specific use of rhetoric was to insult and it was used by a poster with ( we now know) six warnings already for insults. The mod in question has been cracking down on insults in that forum by ALL political stripes. Posters have been suspended and even banned.

A heads up advisement that phrasing an insult in the form of a question will still be seen as an insult to someone who has enough warnings that a ban or suspension at least might be required for another warning seems nice to me.

If your issue is that you think the insult is in context mild enough to not deserve moderation then in isolation I’d agree. But in context of multiple past warnings for personal insults? Well given.
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Old 10-10-2019, 07:58 AM
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You don’t think the mod comment was for use of rhetoric, do you?
By their own words, yes, apparently it is. It wasn't for "this instance" of it, it was for "this type"

Last edited by MrDibble; 10-10-2019 at 07:59 AM.
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Old 10-10-2019, 08:20 AM
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Because the moderators won't do anything about it, so there's no point. Thus the "years of protests" comment.
Hmm. Well if you have a case to make that a poster is "threadshitting" or has a pattern of doing so, and you don't have confidence in the moderators unless the complaint is made public, what about making an ATMB thread that lays out your case?

Or even better, what about an ATMB thread that lays out your case that the moderators are derelict in their duties?

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Old 10-10-2019, 08:26 AM
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For years, women protested against the misogynistic comments that far too many men casually posted without consequences. Then the women figuratively stood up, took center stage, and yelled loudly. Surprise, surprise, the mods did a total turnaround and began, shock, moderating those comments. The Usual Suspects, and yes, they were indeed those and everybody knew their names, whined bitterly and were told to stuff it. Some were banned, some left, some got careful, and the board got a bit better, though not perfect.
I've read members mention this event a couple times now. What do you mean when you say "the women figuratively... yelled loudly"? Did they start calling out posters in debate and election threads? Did they make ATMB threads? Did they email TubaDiva and threaten to cancel their subscriptions? If I think that the moderators aren't doing their (volunteer) jobs, what should I do?

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We all know who the other set of Usual Suspects are. I've reported posts and received no reaction from the mods. Others have as well. Not only do the mods not take action against them, they protect them and call out those who oppose aloud. This is behavior extremely similar to what the women of the Dope long despaired about.

If you're new enough not to understand the coded language I'm using, then this post may be gibberish. Code is all that is allowed in ATMB. I'm betting that the mods can decipher me. You there, in the mod loop, can you hear me now?
No, I don't understand your coded language.

~Max

Last edited by Max S.; 10-10-2019 at 08:27 AM. Reason: clarified that moderators are volunteers
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Old 10-10-2019, 08:32 AM
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But as long as you’re a Trump supporter, you’re allowed to say “Nuke Mecca!” and not get so much as a warning. Nope, no double standard here!
I can't comment on that post, since it's not my forum, but did you report it? If you saw it wasn't moderated, and were so concerned, why didn't you PM the forum moderators? And that post was made before the poster indicated he was a Trump supporter.

In any case, the poster in question is now banned.

Last edited by Colibri; 10-10-2019 at 08:33 AM.
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Old 10-10-2019, 08:34 AM
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I think the warning was perfectly clear. If you use this rhetorical tactic (epiplexis) to insult another poster it will get a warning. So you can use it just fine, except not to, you know, be a jerk.
Hyperbole is apparently also fine, unless there are in fact waves of Trump supporters asking for the thermonuclear destruction of Umm-Al-Qura, and I merely missed them. Hell, I missed the waves of Trump supporters whose opinions on nukes are as yet unstated as well.
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Old 10-10-2019, 09:08 AM
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By their own words, yes, apparently it is. It wasn't for "this instance" of it, it was for "this type"
That's an absurd interpretation. "This type" refers to the device being used as a kind of insult, not the device itself.
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Old 10-10-2019, 09:11 AM
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Bone can confirm, but I don't see anything wrong with erotesis, hypophora, or ratiocinatio.
I thought this was an English only board?
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Old 10-10-2019, 09:52 AM
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I can't comment on that post, since it's not my forum, but did you report it? If you saw it wasn't moderated, and were so concerned, why didn't you PM the forum moderators? And that post was made before the poster indicated he was a Trump supporter.

In any case, the poster in question is now banned.

I thought the purpose of reporting offensive posts was to call the moderators' attention to them.

In this case, I first became aware of the post because the Mod himself quoted it, noting in passing that others had already reported it, and declining to sanction the poster in any way whatsoever.

In that situation, what purpose would have been served by my reporting the post?
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Old 10-10-2019, 10:26 AM
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I thought this was an English only board?
My DNA profile lists me as only 65% English. I guess I need to watch myself.
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Old 10-10-2019, 10:31 AM
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I thought the purpose of reporting offensive posts was to call the moderators' attention to them.
No, that’s not the purpose. If it was then the “report” button would launch a report without being able to add a comment. As it is, not only are you reporting the post but you are also able to explain why you are reporting the post. And because of that, you can plead your case as to why the post was objectionable. You may have noticed or thought of something a mod might not pick up on.

So no, it’s not just to draw attention. Reporting a post that a mod has already read may still be useful.
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Old 10-10-2019, 12:08 PM
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I thought the purpose of reporting offensive posts was to call the moderators' attention to them.
Yes it is. That's why that should be the first recourse when you find a post offensive.

Quote:
In this case, I first became aware of the post because the Mod himself quoted it, noting in passing that others had already reported it, and declining to sanction the poster in any way whatsoever.
tomndebb quoted and moderated a different post by a different poster, not the "Nuke Mecca" one. It was an ethnic joke about Saudis, and as far as I can see it deserved the note it received (which indeed is a form of sanction). No other GD mod posted in the thread.

Checking reports, as far as I can see nobody reported the "Nuke Mecca" post between the time it was made, on 20 September, and the time the thread was last active, on 22 September. I haven't checked every report since then so it could possibly have been reported subsequently.
Quote:
In that situation, what purpose would have been served by my reporting the post?
Since no one else reported it, it would have drawn the attention of the mods.

I'll say for the billionth time (using the rhetorical device known as hyperbole) that just because a post hasn't been moderated doesn't mean it's allowed. We're volunteers. We aren't on 24/7, and we don't (can't) read every post. Sometimes real life intrudes, and several mods have been on travel recently. And even if a post is reported, the report can be missed, because we receive a lot of reports. So if a post hasn't been moderated that you think should have been, go ahead and report it. And if it isn't moderated, you're welcome to PM a forum mod to ask about their reasoning (after allowing a reasonable time for response).

As it is, you have made an entirely baseless accusation that the post, which you never reported (and apparently no one else did), was not moderated because it was by a Trump supporter, a fact that only became evident two weeks after the post was made. I do think you owe the staff an apology. And I would also suggest that before you make a complaint, you read the thread and posts you're complaining about more carefully.

Last edited by Colibri; 10-10-2019 at 12:14 PM.
  #34  
Old 10-10-2019, 12:15 PM
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That's an absurd interpretation. "This type" refers to the device being used as a kind of insult, not the device itself.
Either that device is always going to be an insult (when directed at another poster), or it's never going to be - it's explicitly asking a question to rebuke, so it's always going to be the "type" Bone has "had enough of".

Or else perhaps we can get a list of the "types" of epiplexis that are acceptable, and the ones that aren't? *He asked, already knowing the answer.*

Last edited by MrDibble; 10-10-2019 at 12:15 PM. Reason: why is reuke in my dictionary?
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Old 10-10-2019, 12:41 PM
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I'll say for the billionth time (using the rhetorical device known as hyperbole) that just because a post hasn't been moderated doesn't mean it's allowed. We're volunteers. We aren't on 24/7, and we don't (can't) read every post. Sometimes real life intrudes, and several mods have been on travel recently. And even if a post is reported, the report can be missed, because we receive a lot of reports. So if a post hasn't been moderated that you think should have been, go ahead and report it. And if it isn't moderated, you're welcome to PM a forum mod to ask about their reasoning (after allowing a reasonable time for response).
Exactly. Many people feel that it is government's responsibility to make us behave instead of OUR responsibility as citizens. The SDMB is a microcosm of that attitude. If we all make a more sincere effort to control our verbal impulses and "play well with others", it would go a long way. Believe me, I can have quite a month on me, but I have made an effort to curtail that, and it has definitely helped my demeanor.
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  #36  
Old 10-10-2019, 02:23 PM
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Originally Posted by MrDibble View Post
"You don't care about finding facts" is a moddable personal insult now, on a par with "you're stupid" and "you're a liar"? Fuck that noise.
If we were to compare "you don't care about finding facts" with "you're stupid", then certainly the latter is more severe. But the former is still moddable as it is personalization and not argument.

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By their own words, yes, apparently it is. It wasn't for "this instance" of it, it was for "this type"
To clarify, my instruction was to prohibit the tactic as a way of insulting other posters.

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But as long as you’re a Trump supporter, you’re allowed to say “Nuke Mecca!” and not get so much as a warning. Nope, no double standard here!
There's a few factors at play here:
  • I indicated in the thread that I made the post in, but I will reiterate here. Comments about moderation belong in ATMB. Do not continue to make snide remarks about moderation within the threads in the various forums.
  • As I indicated in the post you took exception to, I missed the initial thread report. It was reported on a Friday afternoon, and looking at my calendar I was out of the office that afternoon. I did look at reports and was on the boards that weekend, however clearly I missed it. That was a mistake on my part. If I had seen it initially, I would have moderated it at that time.
  • In addition, our email alerts for post reports has been wonky for about the past year. As a result, we often get post reports delayed, sometimes up to more than a day. Sometimes they come out of order, etc. I searched my email alerts and this one was not ever sent. I typically manually go through all the thread reports when I am on the board, but I do so less from my phone which I tend to read from on the weekends.
  • We tend to avoid issuing warnings for stale posts, and that practice holds here.
  • We also tend to avoid issuing warnings for brand new posters. They may be unfamiliar with the rules, so typically I recommend to them they read the rules, etc.
  • We were already in discussion about that particular poster and I didn't see the need to issue warnings if they were ultimately going to be banned anyways, which they now have. I quoted it in the note because I wanted to highlight that that type of comment wasn't acceptable.
  #37  
Old 10-10-2019, 02:34 PM
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When epiplexis is outlawed, only outlaws will have epiplexis!

Ask you doctor if epiplexis is right for you.
  #38  
Old 10-10-2019, 02:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Colibri View Post
Yes it is. That's why that should be the first recourse when you find a post offensive.



tomndebb quoted and moderated a different post by a different poster, not the "Nuke Mecca" one. It was an ethnic joke about Saudis, and as far as I can see it deserved the note it received (which indeed is a form of sanction). No other GD mod posted in the thread.

Checking reports, as far as I can see nobody reported the "Nuke Mecca" post between the time it was made, on 20 September, and the time the thread was last active, on 22 September. I haven't checked every report since then so it could possibly have been reported subsequently.


Since no one else reported it, it would have drawn the attention of the mods.

I'll say for the billionth time (using the rhetorical device known as hyperbole) that just because a post hasn't been moderated doesn't mean it's allowed. We're volunteers. We aren't on 24/7, and we don't (can't) read every post. Sometimes real life intrudes, and several mods have been on travel recently. And even if a post is reported, the report can be missed, because we receive a lot of reports. So if a post hasn't been moderated that you think should have been, go ahead and report it. And if it isn't moderated, you're welcome to PM a forum mod to ask about their reasoning (after allowing a reasonable time for response).

As it is, you have made an entirely baseless accusation that the post, which you never reported (and apparently no one else did), was not moderated because it was by a Trump supporter, a fact that only became evident two weeks after the post was made. I do think you owe the staff an apology. And I would also suggest that before you make a complaint, you read the thread and posts you're complaining about more carefully.
We are talking past each other. I was referring to this post by Bone, not any post by tomndebb.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bone View Post
Do not post threats or state or imply that any individual or group is deserving of harm.

I recommend you familiarize yourself with the rules of the board and each forum you post in. This post was made and unfortunately I missed the thread report at the time or else I would have offered you the same advice.


I recommend toning down your rhetoric in order to participate civilly in these forums.

[/moderating]
  #39  
Old 10-10-2019, 02:41 PM
Thing Fish is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bone View Post
If we were to compare "you don't care about finding facts" with "you're stupid", then certainly the latter is more severe. But the former is still moddable as it is personalization and not argument.



To clarify, my instruction was to prohibit the tactic as a way of insulting other posters.


There's a few factors at play here:
  • I indicated in the thread that I made the post in, but I will reiterate here. Comments about moderation belong in ATMB. Do not continue to make snide remarks about moderation within the threads in the various forums.
  • As I indicated in the post you took exception to, I missed the initial thread report. It was reported on a Friday afternoon, and looking at my calendar I was out of the office that afternoon. I did look at reports and was on the boards that weekend, however clearly I missed it. That was a mistake on my part. If I had seen it initially, I would have moderated it at that time.
  • In addition, our email alerts for post reports has been wonky for about the past year. As a result, we often get post reports delayed, sometimes up to more than a day. Sometimes they come out of order, etc. I searched my email alerts and this one was not ever sent. I typically manually go through all the thread reports when I am on the board, but I do so less from my phone which I tend to read from on the weekends.
  • We tend to avoid issuing warnings for stale posts, and that practice holds here.
  • We also tend to avoid issuing warnings for brand new posters. They may be unfamiliar with the rules, so typically I recommend to them they read the rules, etc.
  • We were already in discussion about that particular poster and I didn't see the need to issue warnings if they were ultimately going to be banned anyways, which they now have. I quoted it in the note because I wanted to highlight that that type of comment wasn't acceptable.
Thank you for your explanation, in particular the last paragraph. That makes the decision sound much more reasonable than it appeared at the time. Thank you also for volunteering your time to help the board run smoothly. I apologize for the snark and for inappropriately addressing the moderation within the thread itself. In the end, the right decision was made, and it's not a big deal that it was made a few hours after I thought it should have been.
  #40  
Old 10-10-2019, 03:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kent Clark View Post
When epiplexis is outlawed, only outlaws will have epiplexis!

Ask you doctor if epiplexis is right for you.
Unfortunately I am allergic to the ingredients in epiplexis, and it is also processed in a facility with irony and snark.
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