Warnings in Politics & Elections

Yesterday, agzem received two warnings in one thread

He/she posted something undeniably stupid. Usual Trumpist stuff about the election, completely divorced from reality. Here.

Several posters addressed the substance (or lack thereof) of agzem’s post. Raventhief issued a warning (here)

Hari_Seldon responded to one of agzem’s post as a poster, not as a moderator (here). Then, just a few posts later, without any posts in between from agzem, Hari_Seldon, acting as a moderator, issued a warning to agzem (here).

agzem posted four times in that thread. The original post, which was deemed to be trolling by Raventhief, two more on the same topic, and one somewhat paranoid post expressing some unhappiness about the double warning.

Two warnings for the same thing, in the same thread?

Also, was this really trolling? agzem’s post was dumb and delusional. But being stupid and nuts doesn’t necessarily make someone a troll.

I’m a bit surprised by this mod action. These mod actions, more accurately. Seems like a bit of a pile-on.

I have in the past gotten a mod note from one mod followed by a warning from another mod for the same exact post. In this case, the poster made multiple wannabee posts, and was accordingly warned multiple times.

This was two warnings for trolling for essentially the same post, not a note and a warning.

And I question whether the poster was actually trolling.

The poster jumped into a debate about Trump’s phone call and angrily insisted that they “owned the libs” by “Destroying with facts and logic” and argument that no one actually made. What do you call this other than trolling?

agzem didn’t post about owning libs until after the warnings were issued (here). If that post is trolling, fine, but the warnings were for earlier posts.

The post that provoked the warnings did not contain anything about “owning libs” or “destroying with facts and logic.”

I’m certainly not defending the substance of that post and agzem’s next two posts. As I said above, the post was stupid and/or delusional.

But it seems as if, in this case, simply being a Trumpist is considered trolling.

No, but it was clearly made in the same spirit.

FWIW it seems like the poster in question learned his lesson thanks to the warnings, since he later came back and posted this:

So good job, mods!

So what? Warnings aren’t issued for something that hasn’t yet been said.

I saw that. Nonetheless, I think this mod action was overkill, and I’m still unconvinced that agzem was trolling in his/her first post.

When I replied to the moderators I really thought that was only visible to the moderator. I was surprised when I started getting replies from others. Seems like that should not work like that. I deleted one post today where I posted in the wrong thread and then when I tried to delete some others it said that I had already deleted too many and would have to wait. Why can’t I delete those now?

One can write that Trump voters are worse than nazis and pedophiles or that the GOP is the party of white supremacy but don’t you dare say Biden is sheltered. Just like there were no riots this summer there are no double standards or bias.

It does seem unfair and unnecessary to give a second warning for something @agzem had already posted before the first warning was given. Doesn’t exactly give him chance to learn from his mistakes, does it?

Don’t forget the totally reasonable ‘conservatives believe they have the right to kill everyone else’ thread.


Of course, I’m not expecting actual cites to make a difference when minds are made up.

So he was moderated for a boldface lie (claiming that Biden didn’t have any town halls when he very clearly did), not for calling Biden “sheltered”.

Of course, I’m not expecting the actual content of the post you yourself cited to make a difference when minds are made up.

While it’s possible that the second mod did not think that a mod note was sufficient, this sort of thing is probably more often a mistake, especially if it happened under vBulletin since it was significantly easier to miss previous mod actions in a busy thread. We mark all moderated posts with “staff color” on Discourse which is much harder to miss, which significantly reduces these types of mistakes on the new software. Flagged posts are handled differently on Discourse as well so it’s much easier for us to see what other mods are doing and what flags have and haven’t been handled.

Yes, it happened in the days before Discourse. A mistake, then, though far too late to do anything about it now!

I’ve very much enjoyed the moderating changes that came with Discourse, especially the fact that reports now work much like a PM and the moderators often respond whether they issue a warning or not.

I didn’t think the posts were trolling. (Nor the one about Biden). But it does get harder and harder to really know, because of the disconnect between Trump supporters and reality.

The form of trolling that involves just spouting made-up stuff to try to make people apoplectic in response looks increasingly the same as someone quite sincerely regurgitating things they “learned” on right-wing media.

I don’t see how one offense deserves two warnings. Otherwise, by this logic, anytime someone offends, we might as well have 9 different moderators come in and individually give him 9 warnings.

It was not one offense. It was two separate posts.

You can make the argument that there should have only been one, since the second post was made before the first was posted, but that would be kinda like making the argument that you should not be charged for two counts of shoplifting, since you committed the second act before you were arrested for the first.

Furthermore, I would disagree with the moderators that azgem was debunking a claim “no one had made.”

Czarcasm had posted earlier in that thread a quote from the Washington Post:

So even if no Doper used the words “beg” but rather, quoted a source saying that Trump had “begged,” the claim was being made in the thread and in the media.