Why was Seven banned?

Well, the usual is happening here, sadly. :frowning:

Member of the Board gets upset with staff, and makes this clear, but not being so blinded by his/her unhappiness, doesn’t do anything fundamentally stupid enough to get suspended or banned right away.

Staff doesn’t really deal with it, either because they are too busy, or because they don’t think that the member has been enough of a jerk.

Member tweaks one of the staff members in a particularly unfortunate way (albeit one that does NOT violate this Board’s rules, Wombat :mad:).

Staff over-reacts, and bans said member.

A ton of posters come forward and suggest that this is a bad idea; suspension was warranted at most, not banning (and included in this “ton” are some people who usually are supportive of administrative/moderative actions here!).

Staff responds by circling the wagons and posting increasingly silly justifications of what they have done, rather than simply stepping back and saying, “well, ok, maybe we were hasty.”
I strongly suggest that the staff get together, and get this one right. As I have indicated to Staff, this should have been a suspension. Yes, he was being a jerk. Maybe he has no intention of ever returning to being a legitimate poster here. But the whole POINT to suspensions is to let temporary jerks know that they need to reform or be made permanently persona non gratis. If they wise up, great. If they don’t, then you simply ban them and get to say to one and all, “See, we thought so, but we gave him the benefit of the doubt.”
As it is, the only message is: “We got mad and kicked him out.”

I too have never heard of this particular rule.

But what seems most odd to me is that it seems as though it means there can be no rulebreaking as pertains to the contents of messages. If I send a pm to **TubaDiva **consisting of horrifying, abusive language, under what rule would I be admonished? And, likewise, were TubaDiva to send a pm to me consisting of horrifying, abusive language, under what rule would she be admonished?

Note of course that I don’t have any intent to do so, and this isn’t a threat of any kind.

Oh, and I find it interesting that it seems to be the newer mods that are responding. The more cynical side of me wonders whether we’re seeing the inducement of loyalty. :wink:

I would much prefer a bald statment to that effect rather than all this crawfishing.


In any case, DSYEsq has a sane voice here as well.

Actually, that is exactly what you did. You said it was funny - and accurate.

Apparently you are getting away with it, as Syntropy is with his trolling remark, so you will have to try a little harder.


In what way is it a copout? I was not discussing **TubaDiva **or her PM. I neither condemned nor defended her or what she said. The question was why she didn’t get warned/admonished/whatever for her PM, and I said we don’t police anybody’s PMs.

This is not a standalone message board. It is owned and operated by a newspaper chain. When I became a mod, I was asked to be very careful about copyright issues, and err on the side of caution. As far as I know (not being a lawyer myself), the copyright status of private letters and emails is still questionable, and the rules do say not to post copyrighted material, and I have tried to be consistent about telling people not to post any private correspondence without the author’s permission.

From that same rule thread:

All of that said, I may not be up-to-date on this. Let me check with the admins and make sure I’m correct before continuing to discuss it.

I’m trying to be polite and helpful, wring. Mind returning the favor?

Her. Really, this is not the first time I have said so. Please try for at least one factually accurate post.

InvisibleWombat; I understand the prohibition against copyrighted material, but do PM’s fall under that category? In addition, someone upthread (dogbutler I think) posted they have a quote from correspondence in their sig; should they remove it? Is it only prohibitive when that quote paints the corresponding party in a poor light?

Mate, this is painfully stupid as a reason to justify banning someone. At best - at best - it is an argument for a warning.

I appreciate that you’re attempting to answer.

“bullshit” was specifically addressed by Fenris as an ‘ok’ word to use in this forum. It was not meant as a personal attack, and I’m rather dumbfounded that you perceived it as such.

In your explanation here - please consider that when a mod specifically posts “This is a rule” and then has to shift around and explain that it’s their own interpretation, taken to the extreme of another rule, it does indeed look like rules and explanations therein are rather arbitrary - can you not see that?


Copyright? Really? That’s a pretty weird reason to argue posting a PM is against the rules.

This is a good question, and I don’t know the answer.

You sending an abusive PM to a mod or admin might be construed as breaking the prime rule (“don’t be a jerk”), but I don’t know. I’ve gotten some pretty nasty PMs and have never taken action on one.

If you received a PM you considered abusive from a mod, I would recommend forwarding it to an admin. If you got one from an admin, I’d suggest forwarding it to Ed Zotti. I have no idea what to do if you get one from Ed ;).

The problem, of course, is the definition of “abusive.”

From the same post you cited:

That’s for works of which the copyright status is not at all questionable.

Indeed. Copyright is a stunningly stupid excuse.

Please look at what I said in context. I made it VERY clear that I was not a part of the decision to ban Seven. I was very specifically answering a question as to whether it was okay to quote PMs.

I’m trying to be polite and answer some questions in the thread. I didn’t perceive your response as a personal attack, but there’s no question it was rude.

I confess. I’ve been a moderator here for over a year, and I really don’t have that much cause to reread the rules. I thought it was specifically written there, but it appears that it isn’t. I was wrong.

Still, I have been enforcing it the whole time I’ve been a mod and nobody has ever argued with me about it before. Perhaps because disclosing the contents of correspondence that people consider private is considered a serious breach of etiquette, no matter what your feeling on legality or ethics are.

Why weird, Giraffe? It is a copyright issue, isn’t it?

So now the justification is the PMs fall under the copyright rule? :dubious:
If that is the case (and that is a huge if):

  1. How many other posters have been insta-banned for posting copyrighted material? I seem to recall that they get told to knock it off.

  2. Short bits of songs, poems, etc. have always been allowed under fair use. Why would taking one line out of a longer PM be any different?

Seriously? That’s the best you can come up with?

So, to sum up: Seven violated no explicitly written/posted rule, was banned by a capricious Mod, and now the Mods in general are furiously backpedaling to make it seem like this banning is somehow legitimate.

Gotcha. Thanks for clarifying.

I have to say I’m pretty surprised* that an admin has not made a statement in this thread. It was my understanding that only admins could actually ban someone, so why hasn’t the person responsible for the banning come forward to explain their reasoning? Managers should not sit back and let their staff fight their battles for them.

*Ok, you got me, I’m not surprised at all.

Not exactly channeling the Dean ourself, are we?

Yours was the implication that this place was being run like a fiefdom. If so, I see no signs of deforestation. The truth is, of course, that the vast majority of the members have no unpleasant interactions with the staff at all. The rules are hardly oppressive.

You want a cite for an opinion? You are wise not to hold your breath.

What? What? I mean…what the fuck are you talking about here, dude?

It’s against federal law (apparently) to share a PM on the board; however, it’s perfectly legal to forward a PM to a third party with the hopes that somebody, somewhere will do something about it. Unless, of course, the abusive PM is from an administrator, in which case, there’s literally no recourse because if you post it publically, you’ll be violating federal law (apparently) and, at the minimum, you will be banned. But all of that is a moot point, I guess, since you just implied that what Tuba said to Seven was not abusive. I assume that’s because, by definition, SDMB admins cannot violate the number 1 SDMB rule (don’t be a jerk).

“bullshit” is rude? Huh. I’ll admit it’s not my “the pastor’s here” language, but fuck (not to be confused with “buttfuck”), I thought this was specifically an adult board. Hell, ‘bullshit’ doesn’t even get you a PG 13 rating, does it?