Meta Question

janbb's avatar

If you have a beef with the mods, isn't it more effective to contact them directly rather than bitch on a General thread?

Asked by janbb (59167points) 2 months ago
64 responses
“Great Question” (11points)

I see more and more instances of Jellies complaining on a public thread – whether General or Social – of moderation. Since most of us haven’t seen what was modded off, rather than derail the thread further by making snide comments, shouldn’t the complainer take it up with the mods by contacting them directly? Otherwise, it just derails the thread to no avail.

Anyway, that’s my two cents.

Topics: ,
Observing members: 0
Composing members: 0

Answers

canidmajor's avatar

I agree. Good point @janbb.

Mimishu1995's avatar

Even worse, I just found a random rating website where some people just leave bad reviews about the site without any solid evidence. The latest review was in 2020, from a newbie. My problem is that I didn’t see the newbie saying anything about their issues to anyone here. You don’t just keep quiet about your discontentment than go complain about it on a place where we can’t see.

I have to go find that website again.

Tropical_Willie's avatar

Some people just like public drama.

cookieman's avatar

^^ Exactly that. Drama and/or attention. If so many people didn’t enjoy that, the population on social media sites would drop drastically. Sure, many people want to make/keep connections, share content, and be a good digital citizen — but plenty just crave drama and attention.

JLoon's avatar

I guess I don’t know.

If there’s an issue with a member’s behavior, do you think it’s better to PM them personally, or put it out as an open question like this one?

What really gets results, or makes a difference?

canidmajor's avatar

@JLoon Many people bitch about the mods on open threads a lot, often derailing them. The open question, like this, will reach more people.

JLoon's avatar

@canidmajor – Then Amen.

Bitching is a core American value. I read it in the Declaration of Incandesence.

I think.

KNOWITALL's avatar

I think some feel powerless against the mods and it irritates them because they don’t want to leave the site, but also don’t want all their questions or comments deleted constantly.

In my opinion, perhaps with so few users and so few questions maybe it’s time for the moderation to loosen up a bit. If it’s pissing people off to the point they leave, what’s the benefit in being so hardcore?

janbb's avatar

@KNOWITALL My point is not that they shouldn’t raise the issues they have but that they should do it privately with the mods rather than just constantly grousing in threads. Or even post a Meta question like I am doing about the moderation if it troubles them.

I don’t know anyone who’s left because of the moderation but that doesn’t mean there haven’t been any.

kritiper's avatar

To contact them directly, IMO, would be more civil. No need to air my/our laundry before the whole world. I have found the mods to be very fair and just.

downtide's avatar

As a former Fluther-mod myself, I 100% agree. Disputes with mods are personal matters and should be discussed in private. It’s not much fun for anyone else to read.

stanleybmanly's avatar

I disagree. I will not dispute the requirement for both moderation and the probable necessity that such moderation be deemed omnipotent. In spite of what might appear a malevolent streak toward stirring shit up, I would ask all of you your opinion of an open forum where your expressed views can be extinguished virtually as quickly as they are expressed. I just love it when others puzzle over the time I “waste” on fluther and request a suitable explanation for the devotion of that time. What’s your answer to that question? Mine is probably a matter of mood, but how about this one? Fluther is an eclectic community wherein conversations are habitually regulated by the “thought police”, often at the behest of flag hurling malcontents and frustrated would be disciplinarians obsessed with the “letter of the law”. I’ve had my share of pm conversations with our mods, and yet have no reasonable alternative to our mods or the process, regardless of the fact that the job itself is repugnant by necessity. They remain our heroes, but it is ESSENTIAL that we quickly challenge decisions we find erroneous or egregious AND DO SO IN THE OPEN.

chyna's avatar

In my opinion only, this is a question and answer site. I have been offended and sometimes hurt if a question or an answer has been modded. The latest was I had a spelling error in a question and it was sent back to me to fix. For the life of me I couldn’t figure out which word was misspelled. I was offended at first, then thought that I wasn’t going to bother because it wasn’t that important of a question. I also realized years ago that I didn’t need to be mad or hurt if an answer was modded, because in 2 days, no one, including me, would remember what I said even if it was left up. As I said, it’s a question and answer site, not a do or die place, so I just say meh, and move on.

cookieman's avatar

Why is it ‘have beef with’?

Why not chicken or pork?

stanleybmanly's avatar

or a fish to fry? (moderated off topic?)

janbb's avatar

A bone to pick? A sushi to roll? A French to fry? Good question!!

Mimishu1995's avatar

I found the website

@JLoon fun fact: no matter how much Americans bitch, they will never surpass people of my proud country. Here’s the proof. I have to limit my FB use strictly on neutral pages (pages about art, crafts…) because I’m just so depressed about what the netizens of my country have become.

JLoon's avatar

@Mimishu1995 – Haha!

Well, we could probably all use some “digital civilizing” – as long as there’s no penalty for flunking ;)

canidmajor's avatar

In spite of your grand Les Mis style of outrage about transparency and your determination to be “open” about everything, @stanleybmanly, I guess it simply doesn’t occur to you that crapping on someone else’s Q is just obnoxious.

Somebody once said something to the effect that another user only showed up to whine, kind of like coming to someone’s house solely for the purpose of taking a big dump, bitching about the facilities, then leaving. (I would happily attribute, but I don’t know if the analogist wishes to be identified).

I have been here since 2010, with only one hiatus, I’ve been modded, reprimanded by mods, had questions sent to editing for what I believed to be silly reasons, and I still don’t think that Fluther in any way resembles a democratic society, nor does it owe us some kind of Constitutional courtesy.

If your prose is so deathless, save it and publish it.

Geez

Brian1946's avatar

I generally don’t think it’s a good idea to bitch on a General, Social, or Meta thread.

I think the best solution is to head to the dance floor, and Disco our differences away! ;-D

KNOWITALL's avatar

@janbb If I cared much, which I don’t, I’d suggest a mod appeal section where an impartial third party made a final decision.
While I haven’t had many issues personally, I’ve certainly heard about them from past and current members.
I’m a moderator in another group and people resent interference and overzealous moderation. It’s very normal. Holding the reins loosely is more effective in keeping members happy.

janbb's avatar

@KNOWITALL Interesting ideas although I don’t think there is an impartial third party anywhere in this world. At one point when the site was larger, we had a paid Community Manager and 8 mods! I know that major modding decisions at that time were discussed by all the mods and I suspect that is still true. Now we are small and there are only two or perhaps three. I’m so in favor of keeping this site alive that I try to support it even though we all may have gripes at times.

downtide's avatar

The problem with “holding the reins more loosely” is that the site then fills up with troll-posts and hate and people demanding “their God-given right to free speech”. And that puts other users off. You might keep the trolls and haters happy but what about everyone else?

Neither Fluther nor any other website owes anyone the right to free speech, they are all private enterprises. The degree of moderation will vary from one site to another and the solution in all cases is, if the moderation style on a particular website does not suit you, to leave the site you don’t like and join another one.

I’ve been a mod on one other forum besides Fluther. The other was a much looser moderation style, practically the only sorts of posts that were removed would be spam, or content that was actually illegal. Trolls and haters weren’t modded, they were publically shamed, humiliated and hounded out by other users. The sad part though, was that we also lost many good users who couldn’t handle the haters, and they quit. As did I, in the end.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@janbb Some social post comments are modded for no apparent reason. If there was an explanation, it would be tolerated better.
Maybe a brief PM – We modded this post (’—-) because it broke rule A.

Again, my only concern is losing more partipating jellies. They take the time to post a thoughtful comment and it’s gone.

One jelly in particular is extremely well-educated and more literate than most here and his posts are deleted constantly. It can feel like you’re being singled out or bullied. He’s not in my political party and we disagree often, but he still deserves an explanation in my opinion.

@downtide We aren’t talking about trolls, we are talking about daily users we all know. Even children usually get an explanation on why behavior or words are wrong, so why can’t he get an explanation?
I’ve heard a lot over the years about mods unfair behavior and never felt anyone proved it. This person I do trust is being truthful. And looking out for all of us.

janbb's avatar

@KNOWITALL I’m not trying to argue with you but on the first post deleted there is always an explanation, whether it’s “off-topic”, “flame-bait”, “too many typos”, etc. As has been explained before, follow up posts that relate to the deleted one are deleted as well. Is further explanation needed than that? If so, “contact the mods” would seem to be the solution.

Mimishu1995's avatar

@Brian1946 Why don’t we start now? :D

KNOWITALL's avatar

@janbb That are not always easily understood.

To me, everyone is calling stanley a liar when his concerns are not taken seriously. Why would he lie? He has more money than most of us, had a full career and amazing education. There’s zero gains, in fact quite the opposite, for him to care excessively. Shrug.

canidmajor's avatar

@KNOWITALL I haven’t seen anyone call Stan a liar, on this or any other thread. Where is that please?
And your praises sung to him, and your dismissive “shrug” notwithstanding, he does seem to “care excessively”, as he constantly posts about his mod dissatisfaction.

canidmajor's avatar

Unless, of course, his aim is to become the center of all things, at which he is certainly becoming successful.

You win, Stan, hooray for you.
Done.

Hawaii_Jake's avatar

I have read the OP and the entire thread.

I like the fact this site is heavily moderated. If it became looser, I would likely leave. I can go to Reddit to participate in forums where there are no writing standards or rules against staying on topic. It’s not just Reddit. The vast majority of the internet thrives with text speak and wild speech inciting hate.

I have seen hate speech left in place here. Twice in the past, I left because of it for long periods and only returned because of tragedy. There are times when moderation here has not gone far enough.

The moderation here enforces rules set in place by the founders. Complain to them.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@canidmajor You need to start reading the actual words in a post. That’s two days in a row you come at me due to your lack of reading comprehension.

Many others have complained, left and some have stayed, regarding moderation and moderator behavior. After all these years and especially with Stan giving specific examples repeatedly, I’m starting to take it more seriously. Nothing more or less.

If none of you are concerned, then so be it. But I like the guy and it is a red flag, even when it’s a Democrat being silenced.

janbb's avatar

I just thought of a new song:

“I’ve been modded,
Been forgotted,
When will I be lurved!”

Zaku's avatar

@stanleybmanly “I would ask all of you your opinion of an open forum where your expressed views can be extinguished virtually as quickly as they are expressed.”
– Well, there’s a big difference between “can be” and “are”. It seems to me that almost every forum has that possibility, which becomes necessary when there are bots and people who will post streams of obscenity to public forums. In a forum where it actually happened to me for no good reason, I would report it to the site leadership, stop posting until/unless it changes, and probably complain about it elsewhere.
– But it hasn’t happened to me for no reason. There were a few times I did disagree with the mods removing a few of my posts, but they did have their reasons in the Fluther policy (i.e. about not being strictly on-topic in General, or talking about other users’ account status or asking in a public thread why the guy who posted lots of questions about extremely NSFW stuff was removed, or being extremely hostile towards someone’s post that I thought deserved extreme hostility).

“I just love it when others puzzle over the time I “waste” on fluther and request a suitable explanation for the devotion of that time. What’s your answer to that question?”
– I’ve almost never been asked that, despite the amount I “waste” here. Like you, my answer would depend on mood. There are many reasons. Because I like to, and I can. Because I find it interesting and sometimes satisfying. Because Fluther generally does not delete what I write, and keeps it online for decades, and because often people click the “Great Answer” button on my comments, or reply in interesting ways, or express their gratitude for the value they got from my answers, giving me a great feeling of having contributed to others and made some difference. Because I think that perhaps the most important way we can contribute to the world is by participating in conversations _and saying something unusual but worthwhile, or even something new or unique. I think that’s how human thinking evolves and heals.
– Or, I might ask the asker what set of ideas they have that leads them to ask such a question, that seems to judge and shame someone for their choices. How does one reconcile sitting in judgement on others’ use of their time, while choosing to use their own time to judge others using their time on the same question thread?

”... but how about this one? Fluther is an eclectic community wherein conversations are habitually regulated by the “thought police”, often at the behest of flag hurling malcontents and frustrated would be disciplinarians obsessed with the “letter of the law”.”
– I would say that my experience has been that that statement seems extremely hyperbolic and inaccurate. My thoughts have not been policed, and neither have an extremely wide range of other thoughts, including ones diametrically opposed to mine, or even questions where I think the appropriate response might be to say “no just no. F&$% off. This is wasting everyone’s time.” but that didn’t happen.

“I’ve had my share of pm conversations with our mods, and yet have no reasonable alternative to our mods or the process, regardless of the fact that the job itself is repugnant by necessity. They remain our heroes, but it is ESSENTIAL that we quickly challenge decisions we find erroneous or egregious AND DO SO IN THE OPEN.”
– Ok, well that’s a reasonable opinion.

Another idea might be to PM each other to discuss if something really seems off. If people think there has been awful moderation going on, maybe PM me so I can at least know about it.

stanleybmanly's avatar

Now this is a worthwhile conversation. @canidmajor. I want you to think a minute over which of us you would judge to be “outraged”. And as for “crapping on questions”— that’s neither an ambition of mine nor I believe a demonstrable fact. If you are disappointed in me, believe me my own regard for your own discernment has slipped proportionately. I have nothing mean to say to you, but I advise you that if you would prefer to trade insults you’re in for the ride if your life.

stanleybmanly's avatar

But back to serious business. There should be more of these conversations regarding our mods and the process overall. I’m not advocating their elimination or do I pretend to have any proposal for improvement. But theirs are judgement calls—there’s no getting around it. As such, there will be, there MUST be those occasions when those decisions are open to review. In the end, our mods are entitled to slap away our objections. That doesn’t mean we should not object. I don’t want my comments or YOURS obliterated as matters of routine or misunderstanding. Necessary or not, the mods are our bureaucrats and abuse is their lot. It is WHY they are heroes.

Hawaii_Jake's avatar

applause for @Zaku

flo's avatar

Advocating anti transparency is the thing to do. Being anti knowledge is the thing to aim for.

flo (13313points)“Great Answer” (2points)
rebbel's avatar

@KNOWITALL “One jelly in particular is extremely well-educated and more literate than most here and his posts are deleted constantly. It can feel like you’re being singled out or bullied. He’s not in my political party and we disagree often, but he still deserves an explanation in my opinion.”

I wouldn’t say my posts are deleted constantly.
It has happened, true, but not recently.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@rebbel Good timing! Ha!

longgone's avatar

[mod says] It’s certainly more effective if you want an answer to a specific question. If you want to suggest (or force) a change, I believe the best way is to start a Meta thread, for three reasons:

1) While we have to remove discussion of moderation in a General thread, a Meta thread about general policies is just as public and won’t be removed. We can address the complaint (whereas in a General thread, we can’t), but that should be a bonus if you’re arguing in good faith.

2) There’s a chance that Ben will see a thread in Meta. If many agree that there’s a problem with a certain guideline or moderator, he’d be informed and we’d discuss how to proceed. The guidelines have changed in the past, and changes still happen – though more rarely.

3) It requires a little bit of effort. I am truly in awe of this community. There are so many ridiculously smart and kind people here, collected in one place. Fluther thrived before I even heard about it, and I feel honoured to be a part of it. If we didn’t take seasoned jellies’ concerns seriously, we’d ruin this place in no time. And many do voice concerns, or bring up situations that didn’t go well. That’s welcome, privately and in public threads. But writing a post in all lower-case and then complaining about the writing standards on a random thread? I can’t see how that helps Fluther at all. I’d rather debate the standards publicly for a week than see threads unfairly derailed like that. I’m sure there was a legitimate concern behind the comment. But how do I address it when I don’t know the specifics?

@KNOWITALL I like your ideas. If I could implement an impartial third party appeals court, I would. I also think that we can certainly spend some extra time on providing reasons for moderation. We’ve probably dropped the ball there recently. Ideally, we’d have prewritten explanations for everything we are supposed to remove, not just the top seven issues – but Fluther is old, and I doubt we’ll manage to have that changed. Instead, we can work around it by communicating more. I’ll keep your feedback in mind personally and I will also bring this up with the rest of the team.

@stanleybmanly Rather than having your objections slapped away while derailing threads, why not have a conversation with us – privately or in Meta? I remember excellent PM conversations with you. You challenged us then, too, but you did not advocate “abusing” us. In fact, you had valuable input and laid it out clearly and politely. I would appreciate more of that – and I’m being completely sincere here.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@longgone Workable solutions, love it.

@Stanleybmanly Careful, they’ll recruit you now that you’re retired! Haha!

stanleybmanly's avatar

@KNOWITALL It could never happen. You couldn’t get me to CONSIDER the possibility with a gun to my head

@longgone of course we’ve had conversations that matter. But apparently you and the others here view my current rants as some campaign to torment the mods. The abuse I’m talking about is not about any vindictive retribution. Let me put this as clearly as I can manage. It’s YOUR JOB to wear the bullseye, and before @canidmajor lights up like a roman candle, let me explain: there is of course every conceivable pile of shit that is going to be posted here. The ONLY thing I am saying to the ENTIRE community is that if you feel the mods fkd up, you owe it to ALL of us to stand the fk up and say so. In the end of course the mods can sweep it all away. It is embarrassing to the site and everyone here if you are allowed to routinely don that bullseye and consistently remove it pristinely lacking a single hole.

raum's avatar

Too bad there’s no option to create a megathread in Meta for all complaints about moderation.

I get that there’s a difference between PMing moderators (to resolve specific issues) and posting to Meta (to discuss issues with the whole community). But I’d appreciate the option to not have to read about it over and over.

Definitely doesn’t belong in General or Social—unless it ties into the question somehow.

raum's avatar

How about:
I’ve got a pancake to flip with you?

Or does that sound like I’m flirting?

stanleybmanly's avatar

How about the chat rooms? As things stand they’re otherwise rather pointless.

Brian1946's avatar

@raum

“I’ve got a pancake to flip with you? Or does that sound like I’m flirting?”

Yes, it does: with high-gluten, low-fiber, high-sugar deliciosity!

Mimishu1995's avatar

Why do we have to choose between pancake and flirting? Why can’t we have both?

raum's avatar

@Mimishu1995 I was trying to make up a Flutherism along the lines of have a beef with or bone to pick.

But pancakes have always had flirty undertones on Fluther. So kind of hard to use it in a different context. :P

Brian1946's avatar

I have a tentacle with or a nematocyst to pick.?

Mimishu1995's avatar

@raum Oh, I thought you were trying to propose something like @Brian1946‘s disco…

Oh well, our disco could use some pancakes :)

flo's avatar

It’s better that mods anywhere waste their time addressing users one by one, instead of inmforming them all at once in a thread.

flo (13313points)“Great Answer” (1points)
flo's avatar

When you ost a question in Meta you are directly contacting the mods, since it has to be that they monitor every quesrion as it is posted so that they can be on top of things, I’m guessing.

flo (13313points)“Great Answer” (0points)
raum's avatar

@Mimishu1995 I knew he loved the golden age of disco. But I didn’t know he was trying to revive it!

raum's avatar

@Brian1946 I’ve got a thread coiled in my nematocyst to spring upon you.

Yeah, that one’s a little awkward.
Will have to work on that one…

Brian1946's avatar

@raum

If you were born in late 1979, you might be the reincarnation of Disco! ;-0

raum's avatar

According to Buddhism, the soul regenerates 49 days to 2 years after your death.

So…if you’re born sometime between August 30, 1979 and July 12, 1981, you might be. :P

Brian1946's avatar

@raum_the_dancing_maum

”...if you’re born sometime between August 30, 1979 and July 12, 1981, you might be. :P”

The numerical suffix of my user ID, leads me to a different conclusion about the decade of my birth. ;-)

It’s in your chronological neighborhood, Dalai Disco! :P

flo's avatar

The OP has the word derailing a thread but look at all the jokey threads not even related to the topic.

flo (13313points)“Great Answer” (1points)
janbb's avatar

@flo After a subject has been covered adequately in a Q it is ok to switch to humor and joking.

flo's avatar

Edited:
1)General and Meta are serious posts and Social, not necessariy. That’s for new people who may be reading this.
2)Serious very helpful posts can be below all those jokey/off topic posts, and won’t be found. And that’s not a good thing.

flo (13313points)“Great Answer” (3points)
cheebdragon's avatar

Sure, but they rarely even respond.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@flo People have derailed Meta threads as long as I’ve been here, like it or not.

But after longgone’s post to converse with other mods about the situations jellies are experiencing, and how it makes them feel, I think some jellies thought we were done with our serious conversation.

flo's avatar

@KNOWITALL In General too. But I’m referring to the rules, not about whaty has happened or not happened.

flo (13313points)“Great Answer” (1points)

Answer this question

Login

or

Join

to answer.

Mobile | Desktop


Send Feedback   

`