Collibri's latest mod note.

In GQ dougie_monty asked a question about a money-scamming popup piece of malware:

Moderation happened:

I think **Collibri **is 100% in the wrong here.

It’s simply a matter of common English usage. See a scam, and think to yourself, how stupid you’d have to be to fall for such a transparent ploy. That is a generic You. It is It is obviously not directed at any particular person. It is not a remark that targets dougie_monty, or anyone else.

What’s more, it’s a hypothetical. A person *would *be stupid *if *they fell for it. And he notes that dougie_monty didn’t fall for it. Thus he is specifically excluding **dougie_monty **from the category of stupid people.

No warning was issued. Go play outside till the street lights come on.

Any Dopers who read my posts–and the replies thereto–can assess the issue themselves. I don’t think I am exaggerating to say that some of them have made me something of a figurative punching bag. I confess to sometimes awkward phrasing but I often feel that others are verbally abusive on purpose–for their enjoyment. My parents told me as much when I was young–that I could expect it…and I am disappointed that some people who claim maturity in various aspects can behave thusly. :frowning:

I agree with the OP. I thought it was pretty clear that by saying “Calling the number isn’t ‘falling for it’. Paying the fee is ‘falling for it’,” Derleth was explicitly not calling dougie_monty (who had called the number but not paid the fee) stupid or saying he “fell for it.”

Given that the OP included pointing out that he had, in fact, called the number, for Derleth to say “Laugh about how stupid you’d have to be to fall for such a transparent ploy” meant that he was calling dm stupid. People have been dinged in the past for making insulting “general statements” when they knew that they applied specifically to another poster.

Did you read Derleth’s post all the way through?

He specifically noted that d_m *didn’t *fall for it.

It could very well be that Derleth meant no insult. But just from reading his post, it’s hard to tell. Take the mod note as a friendly reminder that the mods are not mind readers.

Quite so, Ethilrist.
“Readily fluent…often insincerely so.”
That’s my dictionary’s definition of “glib.”
If the shoe fits, wear it, Derlith. ( Unsmiling emoticon goes here)

…if it was genuine 100% certified actual ransomware then “paying the fee” is a valid option, and in some cases the only option available.

It was a serious question posted in General Questions: Derleth’s response was not constructive, wasn’t a GQ answer and directly contradicted some of the advice given by the FBI.

Seemed that way to me. But it was a mod note, not a warning. Nothing to see here. Move along.

Mod-noting him for providing bad information is fine by me. But I agree that he took pains to say that dougie, by not paying, hadn’t fallen for it, and therefore wasn’t in the “stupid” category he was describing.

…if however the only option left open to dougie is to pay the fee to get the use of his computer back, (and it may well be the only option left open to him) then he does fall into the “stupid” category Derleth was describing. And thats the point. Paying the fee is a legitimate option of last resort: and people aren’t being stupid if they choose to do this: sometimes they literally have no other choice.

No. He specifically says calling the number isn’t falling for the ploy. In fact, if you read the entire post, he says calling the number can actually be smart, as long as you know the whole thing is fake. And the OP puts scare quotes around the “technician,” indicating he knew it was fake.

I do not understand how anyone is twisting this post to mean he was insulting the guy. The OP did exactly what the post said was smart.

Except mind-reading is exactly the problem.

I don’t have a problem wtih the initial note. Even mods read things wrong sometimes. I have a problem with the part where Derleth explains what he meant, and Colibri, rather than admit he might have made a mistake, accused him of trying to game the system.

Somehow, despite the text of post saying something completely different, Colibri was able to mind-read what Derleth really meant.

It’s an all too common problem–seeing posters as the enemy, and seeing criticism an attempt to get away with something.

I agree, mostly, with what you’re saying. Derleth seems to be operating with a mix of correct and incorrect ideas.

  1. Sometimes things like this are nothing more than phishing scams that have no effect unless you call the number and pay up.
  2. Sometimes things like this are ransomware scams, where if you don’t pay up, you lose everything.

Derleth seems to know only about the first option, and is giving advice as though it’s the only possibility. If he were correct about that, then paying up would be ill-advised (if not outright foolish or stupid).

But he’s wrong about that. There’s another option under which paying up may very well be wise. He just apparently doesn’t know that possibility exists.

Thus there’s no way to accuse him of insulting dougie, since he doesn’t know enough to be casting that insult. Accusing him of offering incorrect information is legit.

I also read it as not insulting. It could, however, have been made clearer. Communication in text can be hard.

…again not the point. The note wasn’t for an “insult” it was for a “jab.”

dougie asked “What would YOU do if you went online and saw this appear on your screen?”

The response was “Laugh about how stupid you’d have to be to fall for such a transparent ploy.” Thats a pretty clear jab, surrounded by enough qualifiers that Derleth thought that it would be an acceptable jab, but he thought wrong. As Colibri says in the next part of the note “let’s just answer the question”. As you pointed out Dreleth got the answer to the question wrong in some circumstances. There was absolutely no need for a snarky incorrect response in that thread, I see nothing wrong with it getting called out.

I don’t understand how anyone could read Derleth’s post and not comprehend how it could possibly be interpreted as insulting. It struck me as a snarky, obnoxious response that had an escape hatch built into it, much like following a rude remark with “Present company excepted.”

Maybe Derleth didn’t intend it as a personal jab, but it certainly could have been interpreted that way. It’s the moderator’s responsibility to remind people to be aware of their tone in GQ, especially given the prevalence of snark elsewhere on the SDMB.

Sorry dougie but usually i see you using threars, of the “why i oughta. …” variety.

Well, if you think I use threats, take a look at what leads up to the alleged “threats.” Maybe I can’t be assumed right off to see things your way.