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Winter's Ban


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#21
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I agree with winter being banned. I have been clear about that for at least a year now. Basically since his ban was revoked. He has been a toxic thorn in the community's side. But it was never enough to get him banned.

 

What I feel the most important question is... would be "Why now?"

 

Between the last... ever, and today, what has changed? Because, as I see it, and correct me if you like, I would love to be wrong, the only difference is that this time he opposed the mod team one too many times. His behavior was a little heated, but compared to what we see from him and so many more members these days? It was nothing. The only clear provocation, the only thing that would have prompted evilfusion to pull the trigger, is winter agreeing (keep in mind, this wasn't even his thread, he was far from the only one involved) that the mod team is overstepping bounds. Now, I can only assume that this isn't exactly how it went down, because if it is, wouldn't this timing be petty at best? If such behavior is banworthy, why isn't shard banned? If speaking out against the mod team is a punishable offense, how do I have no warning points?

 

I am not saying this all is the case. I am saying that it sure as hell looks like it, at least to myself and Black. I am desperately hoping that there is an alternative explanation beyond "nobody likes him and we decided now is as good a time as any" but I am not seeing anything of the sort. Please, please prove me wrong.

 

I agree that winter should be banned. I have thought so for ages. Today was the exact wrong day to do it.

 

I can't say for sure why it was different now, but I can say I'm fairly positive that it wasn't because it was directed towards the mods. I'd say it was more of a case to do with it being the straw that broke the camel's back than anything.


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#22
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I can't say for sure why it was different now, but I can say I'm fairly positive that it wasn't because it was directed towards the mods. I'd say it was more of a case to do with it being the straw that broke the camel's back than anything.

As I said, I want that to be true, but it's a hell of a coincidence.


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#23
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As I said, I want that to be true, but it's a hell of a coincidence.

 

If your concerns were true, then I would say Shard would be banned as well, or rather just the overall sample of affected people would be bigger than just Winter. I don't think it would look like as it is now; just bad timing more than anything.


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#24
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As I said, I want that to be true, but it's a hell of a coincidence.

What about the dozen of other times people, and specifically Winter, has expressed distaste towards the mods and opposed the mods in some way?

Your argument honestly has, for the first time I've see, barely any merit here.

If the concern is "He was banned after saying he opposed the mods and think they're overstepping" then it's a concern that is pretty...petty. Given, as said, there has been many other instances of this.

If that's the concern then that would always be the concern given that he made such comments extremely frequently.

Like...I really don't get it. There would always be something that someone could point to and go "Wait isn't it just because..."

In your own words.

No matter what is said to shard and winter, they can argue that any view opposing them does such to support an oppressive leftist agenda. And, technically, that argument can't be dispelled. As has been proven, no matter how much support or reasoning is given against them, they can just respond with "you are just saying this because far left agenda".

There is never a good time. There will always be something that could possibly be brought up that can't technically be argued against because of some vague "issue".


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#25
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There is never a good time.

I mean, if he actually did something particularly wrong, that would be a good time. And, as you just affirmed, criticizing the mod team is not intrinsically wrong.

 

I would like an explanation about this from someone on staff, because it seems like being an asshole is fine until you participate in a big thread about power abuse, and crying out against the mod team is fine unless you are winter.


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#26
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I mean, if he actually did something particularly wrong, that would be a good time. And, as you just affirmed, criticizing the mod team is not intrinsically wrong.

 

I would like an explanation about this from someone on staff, because it seems like being an asshole is fine until you participate in a big thread about power abuse, and crying out against the mod team is fine unless you are winter.

 

Okay.

 

"Being an asshole is NOT fine".


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#27
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I think what I don't get about all this is.

So far the people saying this was wrong more/less say "He should've been banned but this was bad because of how it appears. I don't necessarily think how it appears is how it is but I don't like how it appears."

But I've yet to see many people actually thinking that it's how most are worried about it "appearing".

So I guess I'm sort of confused as to why how it appears in this case matters when the general idea is that it was a rightful ban just at a time that makes it seem questionable to some who have yet to speak up about it.


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#28
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I think what I don't get about all this is.

So far the people saying this was wrong more/less say "He should've been banned but this was bad because of how it appears. I don't necessarily think how it appears is how it is but I don't like how it appears."

But I've yet to see many people actually thinking that it's how most are worried about it "appearing".

So I guess I'm sort of confused as to why how it appears in this case matters when the general idea is that it was a rightful ban just at a time that makes it seem questionable to some who have yet to speak up about it.

 

Reading over Black's (and other member's concerns), they know Winter was a major thorn in YCM's side that needed to be dealt with, but the question is why TODAY to finally take him down instead of, say, November, when he was threatened with a perma him the next time he did something major, and otherwise let him run rampant since then. 

 

Part of it does stem from his past behavior, which he was warned about multiple times, and his reactions towards members in Shard's thread when they told him to be civil in Debates and not resort to name-calling / the victim game in cases. There were other things such as flooding, necrobumping, early bumping, etc, but the majority of the reason for his punishment stems from how his influence negatively affected this site and even outside communities.

 

====

That, and us being silent on this matter, despite said ban having been given less than an hour before this thread's creation. evil didn't want to turn Winter's ban into a public spectacle (and he already compared it to blatantly waving around a kill trophy / public execution). Considering Winter's status, people wanted a note that he was dealt with, instead of the mods trying to handle it quietly (which is usually the case; we are not going to broadcast what a member received as a punishment because that's between the member who got the punishment and us. If there is an issue, they can appeal the punishment).

 

Maybe this should've been announced, but it's already too late. 


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#29
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I have a question for everyone who thinks this should've been handled incorrectly. You've expressed distaste for the fact that the mods had bad timing. You've expressed distaste for the lack of transparency with the ban. You've expressed distaste for how it appears. evilfusion has explained himself, and why he took the course of action that he did. What else is there to be done? What course of action do you believe should be taken at this point? 

 

I'm not trying to hand-wave anyone's concern's here, but what else is there to do about this other than say "I disagree with how you went about this." and move on. Nobody in this thread has said that Winter should be unbanned, in fact, I'm pretty sure all of you have agreed he should've been banned. So, what do you guys want the mods to do about it? This is just going to turn into the power abuse thread again where everybody just turns into broken records repeating the same points over and over again. 


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#30
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Okay.

 

"Being an a****** is NOT fine".

 

The why the f*** I am still around? Or Dae? Or Black?

 

There are a lot of people who'd probably describe themselves as Arseholes, and yet we get essentially free reign on here to do and say what we want.

 

Like jesus f***ing christ of all the possible things you as a team could have done you chose theexact thing and timing that completely validates what Winter and Shard were complaining about.

 

I mean, I know Winter derailed a lot of s*** with his manner, but he doesn't deserve sole punishment for this when he's not the sole problem here. In fact, more people have probably been c***s to Winter in the past few weeks than he's been to others.

 

For the record; I don't especially like Winter, I think he actively makes the site worse by being around. But after knowing him for like 5 years now, that should not be reason alone to ban the guy, and if he wasn't be to be overwhelming smug I'd request his immediate unbanning because this is aburd.


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#31
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1. The why the fuck I am still around? Or Dae? Or Black?

 

2. For the record; I don't especially like Winter, I think he actively makes the site worse by being around. But after knowing him for like 5 years now, that should not be reason alone to ban the guy, and if he wasn't be to be overwhelming smug I'd request his immediate unbanning because this is aburd.

1. Level/frequency of assholery is what I am assuming

 

2. Why?

What other reason is there needed to ban someone besides that they make the site worse and repeatedly cause issues?

 

In any case, I have to second part of what Elly said.

What is it that the people who are upset about this want, exactly? I'm asking for specifics as to what the goal here is.


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#32
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Apologies for not getting to this sooner, I was asleep (and am still groggy and skimming the thread, so pardon me for erros and innacuracies) and I have to leave for work in about 10 minutes, so this will be brief and you'll all get more out of me later today...

Actually it seems Evilfusion did a good job of summing things up nicely. This wasn't due to any one specific instance, nor does this have really anything to do with Winter's criticism of the site staff. We aren't on a witch hunt. Simply put, we dealt with a toxic member that should have been dealt with awhile ago.

I'll be more thorough in adressing all of your concerns later. Just figured I should let everyone know i'm present and available(ish) since that's my job.

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#33
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1. Level/frequency of assholery is what I am assuming

 

2. Why?

What other reason is there needed to ban someone besides that they make the site worse and repeatedly cause issues?

 

In any case, I have to second part of what Elly said.

What is it that the people who are upset about this want, exactly? I'm asking for specifics as to what the goal here is.

1) And yet people seemed to be dicks to Winter pretty damn frequently without punishment. Or if punishment comes, it comes well after it's due.

 

2) Consitency; If being a pest for two f***ing years (Or however long it's been) wasn't a cause for banning up till now, something had to change in order to validate the choice now. Either a new mod bringing a changing attitude and standards, or as it reads currently 'If they can't get with the program, there's only one inevitable conclusion anyway. Best not waste our time any further.'

 

And I am outright calling for Winter's ban to be undone, he be given an apology, and by whatever measure is possible for the team you get your s*** together. You establish a proceedure, you make it known, and you follow it. Any mod who steps outside that procedure should be punished.


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#34
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Jesus.  I don't think I've ever woken up this early to this much ridiculousness in a long time.  Right, let's clear some things up.

 

The why the fuck I am still around? Or Dae? Or Black?

 

That's obviously loaded bait, but I'll admit, I laughed.  

 

TThere are a lot of people who'd probably describe themselves as Arseholes, and yet we get essentially free reign on here to do and say what we want.

 

False.  I've punished people on both sides, from Cowcow, and Craft to Polaris and Winter.  So idk where this is coming from.

 

 

Like jesus fucking christ of all the possible things you as a team could have done you chose theexact thing and timing that completely validates what Winter and Shard were complaining about.

 

I mean, I know Winter derailed a lot of shit with his manner, but he doesn't deserve sole punishment for this when he's not the sole problem here. In fact, more people have probably been cunts to Winter in the past few weeks than he's been to others.

 

For the record; I don't especially like Winter, I think he actively makes the site worse by being around. But after knowing him for like 5 years now, that should not be reason alone to ban the guy, and if he wasn't be to be overwhelming smug I'd request his immediate unbanning because this is aburd.

 

Timing was awful, I concur.  You could chalk it up to coincidence, but that's both true and false.

 

And this whole thing about thing about people being cunts to Winter?  I punished them for it.  Look at what happened to Snatch.  That's your most recent example.  Are you accusing me of bias or what?  Because frequency is a big deal.  When Winter brings purposely antagonistic and belligerent arguments site wide, blows them up, and causes reports regularly, it's problematic.  

 

And your bolded point solidifies the point.  As a presence on this site, Winter actively made it worse.  For just about everyone.  Even when he tried to create discussion, he turned it into a blame came, had a pity party, and made himself the victim.  Citing his great archnemesis and "Moderation's Greatest Evil", Roxas, every turn he got, and proceeding to blow up the report feed (by getting reported, though a lot of these particular claims I was of course lenient with him, since it amounted to very little).

 

 

1. Level/frequency of assholery is what I am assuming

 

That's part of it.  The amount of reports I got on Winter was multiple times a week.  This is one user.  Over the course of a month, and then a year, up until now, it's not noticeably changed.  Even when I can let him slide, there's still things that I had to punish him for.  And even after I would PM him, try to get him to improve his behavior, and have private conversations with him per his request, even going so far as to involve Super Mods and make sure he felt his absolute most comfortable, he still turned around and did the same thing, over, and over, and over again.

 

 

1) And yet people seemed to be dicks to Winter pretty damn frequently without punishment. Or if punishment comes, it comes well after it's due.

 

I'm just gonna refer you back to my statement above. 

 

 

2) Consitency; If being a pest for two fucking years (Or however long it's been) wasn't a cause for banning up till now, something had to change in order to validate the choice now. Either a new mod bringing a changing attitude and standards, or as it reads currently 'If they can't get with the program, there's only one inevitable conclusion anyway. Best not waste our time any further.'

 

Something did change.  After I stepped into the "Moderators Stifling Freedom" thread, and I explicitly stated what the problem was, what was and wasn't going to happen, and how I was going to try to keep the thread open for discussion, he almost hand waved it.  He went on his usual tirades, contributed little to nothing, and devolved the thread even further.

 

Following recent events in the "Chechnya" thread, that was enough for evil to step in.  Thus the ban. 

 

Regarding Zai's quote, I only caught it after he posted it in someone's status.  No comment.

 

 

And I am outright calling for Winter's ban to be undone, he be given an apology, and by whatever measure is possible for the team you get your shit together. You establish a proceedure, you make it known, and you follow it. Any mod who steps outside that procedure should be punished.

 

I can tell you right now, there's almost zero chance that evil's decision gets undone.  Also, you already know our procedure.  Sakura updated the rule book not long ago.  Winter was a high profile case that escalated to this point very quickly.  He was quite an exception.  But I agree.  Stepping out of procedure causes problems.

 

Basically you're asking me at this point if you can have unrestricted access to the Mod Forum and the report module.  But YCM isn't mature enough to handle that kind of information, which is why we created the PR Position.  So unfortunately, that cannot happen.  But I think once we've gotten past this "shock and awe show" (cuz that's what it is), you'll find the place cleaned up.

 

And for the record, you didn't cause site wide problems.  You were aggressive, sure.  But I didn't punish Winter for being aggressive.  I punished him for attacking people.  Same way I punished anyone else who crossed that line.  


 

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#35
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False.  I've punished people on both sides, from Cowcow, and Craft to Polaris and Winter.  So idk where this is coming from.

 

I can't testify for the others, but I know there's been more than one occassion where I've gone on fairly pointed rants that are just 'f*** you Winter' without ever having any form of punishment for it. In the form of verbal punishment or warning points. I'm reluctant to believe the same would be true in reverse. Free reign may be hyperbolic, but it feels like I'm get given more lienecy than Winter does, despite not actually having much more of a leg to stand on than him.

 

I'll say I'm not accussing you specifically of bias, you are more than fair the majority of the time, and usually aware after the fact when you aren't. But it feels like, there is an overall mod bias, and that Winter is the person this forms a crux against.

 

 

And this whole thing about thing about people being c***s to Winter?  I punished them for it.  Look at what happened to Snatch.  That's your most recent example.  Are you accusing me of bias or what?  Because frequency is a big deal.  When Winter brings purposely antagonistic and belligerent arguments site wide, blows them up, and causes reports regularly, it's problematic.  

 

And your bolded point solidifies the point.  As a presence on this site, Winter actively made it worse.  For just about everyone.  Even when he tried to create discussion, he turned it into a blame came, had a pity party, and made himself the victim.  Citing his great archnemesis and "Moderation's Greatest Evil", Roxas, every turn he got, and proceeding to blow up the report feed (by getting reported, though a lot of these particular claims I was of course lenient with him, since it amounted to very little).

 

I don't think it's Winter himself who makes the site worse, so I phrased that poorly. Winter just happens to be a dissenting voice with god-awful phrasing, and people try to rip into him for it. It's just as fair to blame people (Like myself) who can't let his poor phrasing go, and always insist on pressing the point against him. He has his faults as a debater and a victim complex, but it feels like he is being assigned all the blame for the problems on the site that he has even tangential relation to. And I don't think he is.

 

 

That's part of it.  The amount of reports I got on Winter was multiple times a week.  This is one user.  Over the course of a month, and then a year, up until now, it's not noticeably changed.  Even when I can let him slide, there's still things that I had to punish him for.  And even after I would PM him, try to get him to improve his behavior, and have private conversations with him per his request, even going so far as to involve Super Mods and make sure he felt his absolute most comfortable, he still turned around and did the same thing, over, and over, and over again.

 

And what about the other side of this? That maybe the people reporting Winter so frequently are the ones with the problem, not him? If Winter would get reported, multiple times a week, by presumably the same group of people ever week, why is it not possible they are the problem? Winter's manner is poor, but until now that has never been an outright bannable offensive. According to him, he hasn't been officially warned in a long time. Why if his manner was still poor to the same extent as usual, was he outright banned for it instead of being given further formal final warnings?

 

Like don't we have an example of someone outright stalking Winter for evidence of wrong doing, and then his findings were actually considered by the mod team instead of treated like one should treat it?

 

Something did change.  After I stepped into the "Moderators Stifling Freedom" thread, and I explicitly stated what the problem was, what was and wasn't going to happen, and how I was going to try to keep the thread open for discussion, he almost hand waved it.  He went on his usual tirades, contributed little to nothing, and devolved the thread even further.

 

So Winter and everyone in a debate thread acted like Winter and everyone usually acts in a debate thread. Why was in a bannable offense in this instance compared to every prior instance? What was fundamentally different about the thread in this case that warranted a ban, several hours after the fact I might add, (Like Winter didn't even escalate the situation, or attempt to, after the thread got locked, I did)? Because whilst I'm not privy to the inner details of the site very often, the only thing that seemed different about it this time was that it was a thread against the mod team. And that looks really bad.

 

 

Following recent events in the "Chechnya" thread, that was enough for evil to step in.  Thus the ban.

 

Winter posted 3 times in that thread. An instance of gloating against liberals, a legitimate point of discussion, and something that could very fringely be classed as hate speech, but is more likely just him being trollish about it. What's bannable there?
 

More so, why if the Chechnya thread was a bannable offense did it take nearly two weeks to ban him for it? And furthermore, why the f*** is Shard still here if the conesus is that Shard did post a 'Hate-speech' rant? How on earth is Winter the one who gets the harsher punishment from that thread?

 

 

I can tell you right now, there's almost zero chance that evil's decision gets undone.  Also, you already know our procedure.  Sakura updated the rule book not long ago.  Winter was a high profile case that escalated to this point very quickly.  He was quite an exception.  But I agree.  Stepping out of procedure causes problems.

 

Basically you're asking me at this point if you can have unrestricted access to the Mod Forum and the report module.  But YCM isn't mature enough to handle that kind of information, which is why we created the PR Position.  So unfortunately, that cannot happen.  But I think once we've gotten past this "shock and awe show" (cuz that's what it is), you'll find the place cleaned up.

 

And for the record, you didn't cause site wide problems.  You were aggressive, sure.  But I didn't punish Winter for being aggressive.  I punished him for attacking people.  Same way I punished anyone else who crossed that line.  

 

I mean given my confusion I clearly don't know the procedure. That might just be on me not being that involved here, but I don't see what procedure this fits (And if it does fit one, I think whatever procedured it fits is fundamentally flawed).

 

No, I don't want unrestricted access to the mod forum. But if the mod team thinks it has better judgment than the memberbase here (Which I think is how you act at times), then why can't you do the self policing I ask for yourselves? We don't need to know the details, so long as the mods keep themselves in line for our sake. 

 

But I have outright attacked Winter before. I've not been given a verbal warning for it even. And I can list examples of other people doing the same thing, arguably not on as frequent basis, but arguably more directly than Winter has done in turn to people not called Roxas.


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#36
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Really, I see it as a decision for the overall health of the site. Most people here agree very much that Winter should have been banned. And it was done. Winter has been standing at the centre of toxicity on this site for a long time now. Regardless of what percentage of the responsibility he holds, I don't think anyone can disagree with that.

 

I don't think it's Winter himself who makes the site worse, so I phrased that poorly. Winter just happens to be a dissenting voice with god-awful phrasing, and people try to rip into him for it. It's just as fair to blame people (Like myself) who can't let his poor phrasing go, and always insist on pressing the point against him. He has his faults as a debater and a victim complex, but it feels like he is being assigned all the blame for the problems on the site that he has even tangential relation to. And I don't think he is.

I don't engage in Debates, so I can't refute what you said. Instead, think of it this way: Let's see if these tangential problems continue without him to anywhere near the same extent. If they do and we can solve them maybe, just maybe we can bring Winter back. Otherwise, him staying here will only continue to exacerbate these issues.

 

 

As for timing, modspiracy is a joke. This is just something that's been stewing for a long time coming.


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#37
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I can't testify for the others, but I know there's been more than one occassion where I've gone on fairly pointed rants that are just 'fuck you Winter' without ever having any form of punishment for it. In the form of verbal punishment or warning points. I'm reluctant to believe the same would be true in reverse. Free reign may be hyperbolic, but it feels like I'm get given more lienecy than Winter does, despite not actually having much more of a leg to stand on than him.

 

I still feel like you're asking me to punish you and I admittedly don't have a legitimate response.  

 

I'll say I'm not accussing you specifically of bias, you are more than fair the majority of the time, and usually aware after the fact when you aren't. But it feels like, there is an overall mod bias, and that Winter is the person this forms a crux against.

 

evil, Night, and Flame rarely poke their heads into this because they let the rest of us handle things.  You can't accuse them of bias either.  Zai just got here (I mean he hasn't been around long) and Sakura is Sakura.  I can't say either of them were biased against Winter.  

 

 

I don't think it's Winter himself who makes the site worse, so I phrased that poorly. Winter just happens to be a dissenting voice with god-awful phrasing, and people try to rip into him for it. It's just as fair to blame people (Like myself) who can't let his poor phrasing go, and always insist on pressing the point against him. He has his faults as a debater and a victim complex, but it feels like he is being assigned all the blame for the problems on the site that he has even tangential relation to. And I don't think he is.

 

It wasn't Winter's dissent that was the problem.  He's not being punished for being conservative or having different values.  That's why debates is there.  He was punished because he took whatever malice he had in debates, and dragged down multiple sections site wide, even when politics weren't involved.  Except maybe TCG.  

 

 

And what about the other side of this? That maybe the people reporting Winter so frequently are the ones with the problem, not him? If Winter would get reported, multiple times a week, by presumably the same group of people ever week, why is it not possible they are the problem? Winter's manner is poor, but until now that has never been an outright bannable offensive. According to him, he hasn't been officially warned in a long time. Why if his manner was still poor to the same extent as usual, was he outright banned for it instead of being given further formal final warnings?

 

Like don't we have an example of someone outright stalking Winter for evidence of wrong doing, and then his findings were actually considered by the mod team instead of treated like one should treat it?

 

Except I punished a lot of them too (looking back at Craft specifically as the best example.  And let me reiterate.  I did not punish Winter for every little report.  I did say some of them were negligible.  When I could give Winter a pass, I did.  But I truly believe it's my leniency that let it get to this point in the first place.  That's my fault.

 

The example you're referring to is with Jord.  I think that was just before I came on.  Personally, I think it was overblown and Jord was overreacting.  And no, his findings weren't considered as far as I know. 

 

 

So Winter and everyone in a debate thread acted like Winter and everyone usually acts in a debate thread. Why was in a bannable offense in this instance compared to every prior instance? What was fundamentally different about the thread in this case that warranted a ban, several hours after the fact I might add, (Like Winter didn't even escalate the situation, or attempt to, after the thread got locked, I did)? Because whilst I'm not privy to the inner details of the site very often, the only thing that seemed different about it this time was that it was a thread against the mod team. And that looks really bad.

 

No one acted like Winter except for Winter, and Night (who got a little heated when he came in at the end).  I'd argue Cat toe'd the line, but not enough for me to do anything other than verbally warn him.  The rest of this implies it has to do with disagreeing with moderators.  If that was true, Black, (), and prolly Dae would be long gone too.  But it's not.  It wasn't different.  It was just a big, sloppy mess that should've been acted on sooner (specifically by me).   

 

It's not as bad as it looks.

 

 

Winter posted 3 times in that thread. An instance of gloating against liberals, a legitimate point of discussion, and something that could very fringely be classed as hate speech, but is more likely just him being trollish about it. What's bannable there?

 

More so, why if the Chechnya thread was a bannable offense did it take nearly two weeks to ban him for it? And furthermore, why the fuck is Shard still here if the conesus is that Shard did post a 'Hate-speech' rant? How on earth is Winter the one who gets the harsher punishment from that thread?

 

The thing with Shard is my fault.  I over stepped my own boundaries, got aggressive, and Shard was let off.  But believe me when I tell you I was scolded for it.  Shard should have been banned for that, but I let it go.  So it was a collective decisions that overturning a decision not once but twice, was just stupid.  To let it be, and deal with it more appropriately if something similar happened again (see Snatch Steal).

 

The Chechnya thread and the Mod Stifling Freedom were tied together.  Very clearly I might add.  Another one of those "one thing behind the other" instances.

 

 

I mean given my confusion I clearly don't know the procedure. That might just be on me not being that involved here, but I don't see what procedure this fits (And if it does fit one, I think whatever procedured it fits is fundamentally flawed).

 

No, I don't want unrestricted access to the mod forum. But if the mod team thinks it has better judgment than the memberbase here (Which I think is how you act at times), then why can't you do the self policing I ask for yourselves? We don't need to know the details, so long as the mods keep themselves in line for our sake. 

 

But I have outright attacked Winter before. I've not been given a verbal warning for it even. And I can list examples of other people doing the same thing, arguably not on as frequent basis, but arguably more directly than Winter has done in turn to people not called Roxas.

 

Hm.  I can say for sure I've warned others for attacking Winter, but it's true, I haven't punished you that I can recall.  

 

Regarding that middle bit, we're being asked for more details, and more details, and more details.  So it may not be you asking for unrestricted access, but the call for Transparency is being pushed even further, because what we've done somehow isn't enough.  It's messy.


 

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#38
Aerion Brightflame

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I'm not asking to be punished, I'm just using myself as an example as to how people focus on Winter simply because he's Winter.

 

Even if he's not intetionally getting punished for being a conservative, I think it's still part and part why people are given greater leinecy to s*** on him. I know this isn't the place to get into this debate, but Winter raised the point as 'Why is someone being an Islamaphobe more punishable than something calling feutus parasites?' Both are generalisations that can be demeed as offensive, but the site is only ever going to take issue with one of them on the whole Simply put, what Winter deems as acceptable to say and what the rest of us do is directly skewed by our political viewpoints, it's always going to be.

 

I don't think it's intentional, I don't think people actively go 'He's not liberal, f*** him and all he stands for'. But I think most peoples standards of what's offensive, and Winter's standards as to what's offensive are quiet different, and punishing him for that (Which is what punishing him for derailing thread is, threads only get derailed when they can't leave Winter's views be) is wrong, and will always be wrong.

 

The thing with Shard is my fault.  I over stepped my own boundaries, got aggressive, and Shard was let off.  But believe me when I tell you I was scolded for it.  Shard should have been banned for that, but I let it go.  So it was a collective decisions that overturning a decision not once but twice, was just stupid.  To let it be, and deal with it more appropriately if something similar happened again (see Snatch Steal).

 

The Chechnya thread and the Mod Stifling Freedom were tied together.  Very clearly I might add.  Another one of those "one thing behind the other" instances.

 

Why then was Winter banned for it after the fact but not Shard? If you feel you screwed up with Shard at the time, that's fine (I disagree that it should be bannable, but that's fine), but it doesn't explain why, two weeks after the initial thread, when Winter was the lesser problem in that thread, that he gets a ban in part because of it. Even Winter's actual ban was a few hours after the fact, after the situatio had died down.

 

I don't see why punishment coming a significant time after the fact without any warning of deliberation on it should be acceptable. You said; 'And we're going to have to address it immediately.' but that doesn't imply punishment, to me it implied a thread discussing the issue.

 

And that is part of the problem itself. If we ignore whether Winter's ban was justifed or not for a second, we should be able to agree that the actual way the mod team handled it was f***ing awful. And I'll sum up my view simply:

 

What the f*** is the point of a PR mod if he's not prepping us for situations like this? Like what the hell does Zai do? In the PR thread, he has posted once. You've posted in it more often than Zai has. If the mod team were actually considering banning Winter, and punishing him for that thread, after other people raised a stink about locking it, Zai should have posted in that thread (Or made a new one), something along the lines of:

 

'We understand that locking the Mod power thread has raised some issues. It was locked for X, and the mod team is currently discussing punishment for one or more members involved for X reasons. We will aim to do X moving forwards, and I will update you as things proceed'

 

And then when you decided to ban Winter, you'd prepare a statement, which Zai would post in the same thread, and you wouldn't ban him until the actual statemet was announced. Something co-ordinated, and prepared to deal with any of our concerns, being aware of the issues with timing involved. I undersand you have concerns about sharing everythng, and quite rightfully we shouldn't be privy for anything. But calls for transparency wouldn't be nearly as common if the biggest step for transparency actually did his job with any level of competancy. Like christ, half the time Black still has to function as the PR guy for the mod team.

 

TL;DR - There's two issues here. Whether Winter deserved to be banned right now and if that was justfied, and the god awful way the team handled the actual banning.


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#39
Zaiduck

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1) And yet people seemed to be dicks to Winter pretty damn frequently without punishment. Or if punishment comes, it comes well after it's due.
 
2) Consitency; If being a pest for two fucking years (Or however long it's been) wasn't a cause for banning up till now, something had to change in order to validate the choice now. Either a new mod bringing a changing attitude and standards, or as it reads currently 'If they can't get with the program, there's only one inevitable conclusion anyway. Best not waste our time any further.'
 
And I am outright calling for Winter's ban to be undone, he be given an apology, and by whatever measure is possible for the team you get your shit together. You establish a proceedure, you make it known, and you follow it. Any mod who steps outside that procedure should be punished.

I can't testify for the others, but I know there's been more than one occassion where I've gone on fairly pointed rants that are just 'fuck you Winter' without ever having any form of punishment for it. In the form of verbal punishment or warning points. I'm reluctant to believe the same would be true in reverse. Free reign may be hyperbolic, but it feels like I'm get given more lienecy than Winter does, despite not actually having much more of a leg to stand on than him.
 
I'll say I'm not accussing you specifically of bias, you are more than fair the majority of the time, and usually aware after the fact when you aren't. But it feels like, there is an overall mod bias, and that Winter is the person this forms a crux against.
 
 

 
I don't think it's Winter himself who makes the site worse, so I phrased that poorly. Winter just happens to be a dissenting voice with god-awful phrasing, and people try to rip into him for it. It's just as fair to blame people (Like myself) who can't let his poor phrasing go, and always insist on pressing the point against him. He has his faults as a debater and a victim complex, but it feels like he is being assigned all the blame for the problems on the site that he has even tangential relation to. And I don't think he is.
 
 

 
And what about the other side of this? That maybe the people reporting Winter so frequently are the ones with the problem, not him? If Winter would get reported, multiple times a week, by presumably the same group of people ever week, why is it not possible they are the problem? Winter's manner is poor, but until now that has never been an outright bannable offensive. According to him, he hasn't been officially warned in a long time. Why if his manner was still poor to the same extent as usual, was he outright banned for it instead of being given further formal final warnings?
 
Like don't we have an example of someone outright stalking Winter for evidence of wrong doing, and then his findings were actually considered by the mod team instead of treated like one should treat it?
 

 
So Winter and everyone in a debate thread acted like Winter and everyone usually acts in a debate thread. Why was in a bannable offense in this instance compared to every prior instance? What was fundamentally different about the thread in this case that warranted a ban, several hours after the fact I might add, (Like Winter didn't even escalate the situation, or attempt to, after the thread got locked, I did)? Because whilst I'm not privy to the inner details of the site very often, the only thing that seemed different about it this time was that it was a thread against the mod team. And that looks really bad.
 
 

 
Winter posted 3 times in that thread. An instance of gloating against liberals, a legitimate point of discussion, and something that could very fringely be classed as hate speech, but is more likely just him being trollish about it. What's bannable there?
 
More so, why if the Chechnya thread was a bannable offense did it take nearly two weeks to ban him for it? And furthermore, why the fuck is Shard still here if the conesus is that Shard did post a 'Hate-speech' rant? How on earth is Winter the one who gets the harsher punishment from that thread?
 
 

 
I mean given my confusion I clearly don't know the procedure. That might just be on me not being that involved here, but I don't see what procedure this fits (And if it does fit one, I think whatever procedured it fits is fundamentally flawed).
 
No, I don't want unrestricted access to the mod forum. But if the mod team thinks it has better judgment than the memberbase here (Which I think is how you act at times), then why can't you do the self policing I ask for yourselves? We don't need to know the details, so long as the mods keep themselves in line for our sake. 
 
But I have outright attacked Winter before. I've not been given a verbal warning for it even. And I can list examples of other people doing the same thing, arguably not on as frequent basis, but arguably more directly than Winter has done in turn to people not called Roxas.


I also want to adress a few things, since A. I'm supposed to be the one communicating, and B. I was also a part of the process that led to Winter's ban.

Also, Apologies for the formatting, i'm at work and on my phone and I don't have time to proofread or format this post, and it might be long.

First thing's first. I want to apologize for that quote above. It was something I said in the midst of being very frustrated yesterday. For those who don't know what i'm talking about:

"If they can't get with the program, then there's one one inevitable conclusion anyway. Best to not waste any more of our time."

You guys might take that to mean that i'm pushing some kind of "program" or that I myself had some sort of bias against Winter (and by extension those on YCM who share his political/social/YCM-related views). I don't. Nor do I plan on trying to force the staff and the site to conform to my views or something along those lines. I was just venting my frustration. It was not constructive in any way and I will try to avoid doing so in the future. My comment no doubt contributed to the misgivings you're all voicing, and for that I am sorry.

Now that that's out of the way, lets adress some things.

First, echoing Dad here. There's next-to-no chance that Winter's ban will be undone. The entire team (sans Smear, who was MIA yesterday) agreed that it was what should be done, and in time I hope you'll come to see that what we did was for the best.

Secondly, i'll make it clear that it was me who was among the most vocal in pushing for Winter's ban. I made a thread about it in the mod forum, which was why we finally acted and pulled the trigger yesterday. That being said, it was something that we had been discussing regularly for several weeks, and while I can't point to one specific offense that caused our attitudes to change, I can attempt to corroborate Evilfusion's explanation, and provide details of my own, since I was present for the majority of these discussions and the events that precipitated them.

So, why did we decide now was the time? Well, a few reasons.

Firstly, the obvious one. The past week or so (since the chechnya thread) was the straw that broke the camel's back. This has been stewing for a long time (before I was even promoted, in fact). Collectively, we'd all had enough of his antics, and between that and my broaching the subject with the intent to act, we acted.

There's more to it than that, though, but before I get into it I want to stress that I personally hold no ill will toward winter (or anyone on YCM, for that matter). I've been doing what i'm doing because I feel it is for the best. We as a team may not have conducted this in the best of ways, but we'll get to that.

Now, why did we want winter gone, other than being fed up with the frequent infractions? Its hard to articulate, and a large chunk of this explanation is coming from my perspective (though I think the team will for the most part agree with me), so bear with me.

1. He actively interferes with our ability to do our jobs.

Holding us accountable is great, don't get me wrong, but frankly, calling into question every action we take (and i'm not really exaggerating, he's contested basically everything myself and Dad have done in policing debates of late, up to and including reporting me for "mod abuse" regarding shard's post in the chechnya thread, which i remind you guys should have been a bannable offense) publically and privatelty, negatively impacts our ability to do our jobs. Put more simply, he was actively trying to erode your trust in us. For what reason I cannot say, but I suspect it was in an effort to push his agenda (something i'll get to) or simply because he didn't like us. There's a line between keeping tabs on us and trying to sabotage the staff, and from my perspective, he crossed it. Lots.

2. He influences other members to act out in similar ways

I'm going to point to Shard as the prime example, and granted, this is largely speculative, but i'm not the only one who read into things this way, so I feel it has some merit. Put simply, the more Shard associated with winter, the more her content started to reflect his opinions. When it comes to discussions of islam especially, she seemed to be echoing his views, when frankly she haddn't been doing so to any significant degree prior. She and I came to an understanding regarding her anti-semitic statements (i'm jewish, for the record), and so i think she's simply shifting her targets based on the people she's been associating with.

I can't cite other examples that are as drastic, but a member who is making a concerted effort to create dissent among the userbase and enlist other users in voicing some of his more toxic opinions (be as conservative as you want, but being racist against arabs and as venomously derisive against the religion of islam is str8 up not ok here and the same goes for presjudice against any group) is something I don't think we want here. Again, why? That brings me to point 3.

3. Winter had an agenda to push.

The left is evil, and Winter is a crusader trying to right the wrongs of the PC/SJW leftie YCM mod team. Perhaps he wanted a place where he could voice his (controversial) opinions and be coddled for them, perhaps he had other reasons, but at the end of the day, I can safely say that he wanted us (the mod team, moreso than the userbase but both nontheless) to agree with him, to say "yes, your views are correct. Good job." As such, he saw those who disagreed (especially those in authority) with him as having an agenda of their own to push. We were biased, not representative of our generation, out of touch, whatever you wanna call it. The point is, from his perspective, most of us (the staff) were out to get him. Roxas's legitimate vendetta gave him ammunition in this regard, yes, but when he left the team winter switched targets to me as the primary purveyor of the leftie agenda. I was elected by the corrupt staff regime over other members who "should" have been promoted, I wasn't doing my job as a PR mod, i was biased, i'm using my position as a soapbox and censoring those who disagree with me, etc. While i fully admit i wasn't super proactive when I was promoted, and that the election was poorly handled in hindsight,I hope you can all see how baseless the above accusations are, and how what it all really boils down to is this:

Winter wanted YCM and its community to cater to him and his views, and was actively trying to make that happen to the detriment of the site.

4. He was a shithead

Blunt, but fairly accurate. Winter was flippant, antagonistic, and had obvious contempt for the site's rules and the staff (not to mention he was permabanned for similar behavior once before). He played the victim card whenever possible, and as dad has said he was a frequent thorn in the side of basically the entire moderating team, as well as several users whom he had gripes with. He frequently flooded topics, shitposted, was passive agressive or outright agressive against those who disagreed with him, and had a very annoying habit of posting baity statuses and deleting them as soon as they recieved too much attention. Etc, etc, etc.


The above is our reasoning to the best of my ability to articulate, and from largely my own observations, though like I said above I believe the team and the userbase will agree with my assesment.

Now, on to the next thing: how we handled the ban itself.

There was no clean way to handle this. There really wasn't.

If we were completely public with it, it would certainly have turned into a fight or a witchhunt against winter, and probably shard, and want to stress again that that is not what this is. We made this decision (and again this was a consensus that almost all of the site's staff members agreed on) for the good of the community, and it has been a long time coming.

How we actually went about it was also not great. None of us really like having to go behind the back of a user and kick them out of the community. Its a shitty move, and I don't mind admitting that this whole process has left a sour taste in my mouth.

But we did it. Why? Because in addition to the reasons Evilfusion mentioned, I feel this was the only way we could have done this efficiently and cleanly. Again, entirely public would have been a disaster, and giving winter an advance warning would have been doing the same thing the mod team has been doing: warning and not acting.

Frankly, this should have happened months ago, but we as a team are both lenient and indecisive. We want to not have to step in, and we want everyone who uses YCM to be at ease, and so a lot of us (myself included, believe it or not) let plenty of things slide. But, honestly, enough is enough. There comes a certain point where no amount of warnings will be sufficient. There's no better example of that than the chechnya thread, in which shard committed a bannable offense (Night was very, very close to banning her himself) and winter reported my fairly lax punishment as moderator abuse (his actual phrase), saying that nothing wrong was done and that I was out of line in giving any warning points at all. We let a user slide (dad and i's poor communication that morning didn't help, but that's neither here nor there) and winter attempted to use that given inch and take a mile. I have no doubt that shard posted the thread criticising the mod team in debates after some prodding on this very subject.

I think that, if you must point to some specific event, was the last straw. Was it in and of itself bannable? Certainly not, but I think it was a sign for all of us that nothing productive would come from further discourse.

So, what's the point of all this and what can we take away? A couple things.

Again, some of the following is my own personal opinion, take it as you will.

Winter is an example. Take it as a sign that the mod team is becoming more active, more proactive, and a measure more strict in our interpretation of the rules. This sort of behavior is something we do not wish to tolerate any longer, and so this is our first step toward making YCM less toxic and more friendly. Does that mean we'll be going after people? No, it doesn't. We don't want to ban (shard is still here, and personally I want her to stay), Hell, we don't really even want to warn, but we're more willing and able to do so if it means making YCM better.

We're not infallible either. We make mistakes. We DID make mistakes with Winter, both recently and in the past, and we want to learn from them and grow so that YCM can stay less toxic. I think the fact that this thread happened is wonderful, because it shows that the userbase is invested and wants the same things we do. If we fuck up, call us out on it. We'll try and own up to our mistakes (as i've hopefully done with this longass rant), and do better. This rant is also my way of doing my job. You want transparency, the above is as transparent as I can possibly be in regards to winter. I'm doing my best to communicate to all of you, and I hope you respond in kind to me, since communicating is a two-way street.

I hope this helps and clears things up. I'll be in and out of the forum, skype, and discord all day today, so please come to me if you have anything you wish to express.

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#40
evilfusion

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If you're wondering why the ban occurred several hours AFTER an incident, that's because when it comes to banning members, particularly a potentially permanent ban, the other moderators bring it up to the rest of the team, and seek input from the Supers. This is almost explicitly done to prevent things from happening as a result of a knee-jerk response, and their action being promptly undone if examination of the situation indicates petty reasoning or obvious bias.

 

Seriously, if Zai or Sakura, or Dad banned Winter hours beforehand, there would still be complaints, and I would get back from work and see this situation, then I'd go to them and be like "Okay, why did you ban him?" They'd point out the situation and evidence and whatnot, and I'd probably go like "I agree with the ban, but not how you went about it. This is how it LOOKS. This is what the members are going to THINK you did it for."

 

And then I'd probably have to reverse it, because it didn't properly follow the procedure of having the supers weigh in on the matter, even though the ban for persistent and toxic misbehavior would be totally justified, but I wouldn't be able to defend the actions taken.

 

Seriously, this is PRECISELY why I did it personally. I'm not biased. I'm not prone to emotional overreactions (although when I get fed up with something, watch out). I have no ill will against Winter apart from his misbehavior.

 

Does it still look bad? Yeah, probably. Does it change the ban being warranted? Nope.

 

We can't just let things settle down and THEN ban him, because why did we sit on our hands so long if his behavior warranted the ban a week ago? We can't just wait for ANOTHER incident to crop up because then the argument goes into a circle. It looks bad, like you were just WAITING for him to do anything and then jump on his ass.

 

There's never a "good" time to ban someone. That's why now is perfectly fine. There was an incident. There was evidence of his toxic attitude. This has been brought up to him MANY times previously, but yet we just let it slide, don't we? And if we don't let it slide, you jump on us for it. And the more we let it slide, the more you can argue about how much we've let slide in the past.

 

It's a cycle, and this cycle has ended now.


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