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Note to Michael Ernest  RSS feed

 
Joe Pluta
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Michael, in the last couple of weeks you've shut down two threads I've been participating in. In one, you told Ravish and I to get jobs, and in the other you said the conversaton was useless.
Rarely have I seen any of the other moderators shut down threads solely because they deem them to be "unworthy". And never have I seen a moderator use the last post to make a derogatory comment about others.
If you don't like my posts, feel free to not read them. But I'd truly appreciate it if you quit censoring the forums, especially with the added insult of your editorial comments.
Thank you.
Joe
 
Ko Ko Naing
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I hope the trailboss and other sheriffs would be aware of this case... Since we(ranch hands and greenhorns) are residing in the Ranch, we have to obey and pay respect to the sheriffs whatever they do...
Should there be any election to vote sheriffs and bartenders once a year and re-organize the Ranch?
I'm just a ranch hand... I have no authority to do so... So I'd better keep my mouth shut...
 
Andres Gonzalez
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I agree with Joe, the Job discussion thread was good. If it was meaningless or didn't fit that forum, it should have at least been moved to MD.
 
Andres Gonzalez
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Ko Ko: Should there be any election to vote sheriffs and bartenders once a year and re-organize the Ranch?
you're funny Ko Ko (I'll vote for you as a trailboss, not sheriff; not even bartender, how does that sound? )
 
Ko Ko Naing
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Originally posted by Andres Gonzalez:

you're funny Ko Ko (I'll vote for you as a trailboss, not sheriff; not even bartender, how does that sound? )

I hope your eyes didn't overlook the last line that I wrote in my post... Aren't u funny too that u missed so many words in my post?
 
Michael Ernest
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Originally posted by Joe Pluta:
Michael, in the last couple of weeks you've shut down two threads I've been participating in. In one, you told Ravish and I to get jobs, and in the other you said the conversaton was useless.
Rarely have I seen any of the other moderators shut down threads solely because they deem them to be "unworthy". And never have I seen a moderator use the last post to make a derogatory comment about others.
If you don't like my posts, feel free to not read them. But I'd truly appreciate it if you quit censoring the forums, especially with the added insult of your editorial comments.

Joe, I shut down the exchange between you and Ravish for the simple reason that there was, in my estimation, nothing else of value going on in that topic but a directionless spat. It seemed pissy and unfriendly, or headed in that direction. I felt the forum was better served by not only closing it but expressing a certain exasperation at the behavior in it.
As for tonight's closed thread, same thing. 8-9 posts in succession of two people nagging at each other. There was no hint of the original premise coming back, and I deemed it time to close the thread.
I do not have sole authority in these matters. If another sheriff looks over tonight's closing and thinks it was premature, they may well unlock it, and post a note in Moderators Only saying why. If we need to discuss it, we'll discuss it. You are of course welcome to consult any sheriff or bartender you like if you feel you've been singled out or that a topic was closed without a proper reason.
You might notice that the thread I closed tonight involved another sheriff, who may decide for herself that my action was inappropriate. So be it. I'm not the final word around here on anything. Paul and the other sheriffs/moderators have faith that I will act in the best interests of the site; I have faith that if they thinks I'm off-base, they'll note it. It's that simple.
[ December 15, 2003: Message edited by: Michael Ernest ]
 
Michael Ernest
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Originally posted by Andres Gonzalez:
I agree with Joe, the Job discussion thread was good. If it was meaningless or didn't fit that forum, it should have at least been moved to MD.

All it will take is one sheriff to agree. I felt MD would be poorly served by moving the topic there, so I chose against doing that.
 
Joe Pluta
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I felt the forum was better served by not only closing it but expressing a certain exasperation at the behavior in it.
You shut the thread down for tone, but yet you felt getting in a parting shot was appropriate? Sorry, I don't follow the logic. However, I was willing to dismiss it as a one-time event.

As for tonight's closed thread, same thing. 8-9 posts in succession of two people nagging at each other. There was no hint of the original premise coming back, and I deemed it time to close the thread.
Since when does that constitute a reason to close a thread? There have been dozens of threads, some of which with you involved, which are for some point in time simply a back and forth between two or three people. And of course thread hijacking is rampant.
So why is it up to you to decide when it is time to close the thread? And now that it has happened twice, that constitutes pattern, and I felt it was appropriate to speak up.

You are of course welcome to consult any sheriff or bartender you like if you feel you've been singled out or that a topic was closed without a proper reason.
I have no reason to consult another sheriff or bartender. What I have to say about you I will say to your "face" and in public. I don't believe in backroom chatter.
Evidently you think the phrase "Both of you, get a f*ing job." is proper conduct for a moderator and a civil way to lock a conversation, and since you do, you will continue to act that way as the whim suits you. I find this inappropriate, and I am simply making my opinion public.
And it is just that: my opinion. But I would think that no matter what you choose to do, you might try to show a modicum of restraint and refrain from the phrase "get a f*ing job", at least when you're wearing your moderator's hat.
Or not. It ain't my ranch.
Joe
[ December 16, 2003: Message edited by: Joe Pluta ]
 
Michael Ernest
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So why is it up to you to decide when it is time to close the thread?
Because I was chosen to help moderate this site, Joe.
And now that it has happened twice, that constitutes pattern, and I felt it was appropriate to speak up.
It is a pattern of moderating, Joe.
I have no reason to consult another sheriff or bartender. What I have to say about you I will say to your "face" and in public. I don't believe in backroom chatter.
I'm not inviting you to speak behind anyone's back, Joe. I'm just making it as clear as I can that my actions are subject to review.
Evidently you think the phrase "Both of you, get a f*ing job." is proper conduct for a moderator...I find this inappropriate, and I am simply making my opinion public.
I happen to think it was the right thing to say under the circumstances.
 
Joe Pluta
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I happen to think it was the right thing to say under the circumstances.
You've made that clear. And I happen to think it was inappropriate for ANYBODY to say, much less a moderator, and even less as a parting shot when locking a thread.
I'm interested to know what others think.
Joe
 
Ko Ko Naing
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As my opinion on the case, I have experienced such kinda thing in the past... But I can make myself calm down, coz I am currently residing in the Ranch, which is under control by sheriffs(not my father)...
So I just admit that I have to follow the rules and the manners of the moderators, sheriffs and other authority...
So, Mr.Joe Pluta, even though we might have some complaints, we should keep quiet and stay in the Ranch as usual..... I'm now living well and posting well in the Ranch.....
I guess no complaints is considered in the Ranch, so I would better be quiet...
 
Mapraputa Is
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My opinion is that mine and Joe's posts from that thread (and probably most of other that are unrelated to the topic) should be deleted, and the thread reopened. Joe, I sent you PM, some things are easier to explain without extra heat of doing it in public.
I took the conversation further than it is warranted, because I thought this conversation should happen. Michael was right about closing the thread, as this gave us time to calm down.
 
Joe Pluta
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Joe, I sent you PM, some things are easier to explain without extra heat of doing it in public.
Okee dokee. I'll respond when I can. However, I wasn't particularly heated; I was more amused than anything. Note the smilies - I was actually enjoying the conversation, and especially the topic, about what constitutes a personal attack. I think it's an issue that really needs to be covered here. You guys want to moderate something? Moderate the fact that some poor poster gets lynched just because she expressed an opinion. Moderators ought to be spending time on that, not on censoring threads.

Michael was right about closing the thread, as this gave us time to calm down.
Whatever you say. I think sometimes the priorities here are a little skewed, but that's just my opinion and everyone's got one. Me, I don't think the conversation was anywhere near as heated as ones that have been left to run for pages and pages. My problem, as always, is with arbitrary wielding of power. In this case, I can't see any particular thing in this thread that makes it markedly different from any of dozens of other similar threads, and thus its termination seems arbitrary to me.
The only possible difference is that it was in Jobs Discussion, not MD, but that doesn't apply to the thread in MD that was terminated. I'm just trying to determine what the rules are.
Joe
 
Ko Ko Naing
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It seems like the hot wave calm down and the Ranch is coming back to the state of "Beautiful Beach", which everybody wants to visit...
Let's cheers!!!
 
paul wheaton
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Oh my.
"It ain't my ranch."
It's mine.
First, I have to say that Michael has my full confidence in this sort of thing. That's why I gave him the keys to everything.
I browsed the thread and found a lot of stuff that I don't want on my site.
I suppose I would have deleted the thread and started a new thread with the same topic and said "Let's try this again, shall we? Only this time, let's talk about the issues and not the lovely people that hang out at JavaRanch."
I think that Michael is a kinder man than I am for not deleting the thread.
I think the participants of that thread should take a look at http://www.javaranch.com/md.jsp and http://www.javaranch.com/fallacy.jsp
My way of thinking is that if one person is implying that another person on JavaRanch is anything less than charming (other than in this forum), I delete those posts. If a thread is long and has lots of that sort of thing going back and forth, I delete the whole thread.
I .... just .... don't .... want .... that .... kind .... of .... stuff ... on .... my .... website.
Currently, that thread still has that kind of stuff. If you want to preserve that thread, I suggest folks edit their posts to "be nice" before I decide to clean up over there. See, my net connection is mighty slow. Editing 40 messages could take me all day. Deleting the thread would take just a couple of minutes.
I realize that when somebody posts something less than charming, there is a powerful temptation to be less than charming back. If a moderator does not re-charm such a post, you might drop them a line and make a suggestion. If they don't respond, you can try your favorite sheriff. If they don't respond, send me an e-mail. If I don't respond, then bring it up here.
Have I forgotten anything?
 
Joe Pluta
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I think I understand.
As close as I can tell, then, my posts were wrong for telling someone they were "less than charming". It's not my job. A moderator should have been doing that.
Me, I don't care if you delete the thread. The only reason I got into the thread at all was that I didn't care for the personal attacks on Natalie. Now I realize I should have reported this to a sheriff.
Thank you for clearing this up, Paul.
Joe
 
paul wheaton
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But I'd truly appreciate it if you quit censoring the forums

I think censoring isn't the right word here. "Moderating" would be a better fit.
I think it would be impossible for anybody on the internet to censor anybody else. After all, you could always create your own web page and say whatever you like - uncensored.
"Moderating" is what one does when one allows others to contribute to their site. In this case, I have this web site and you post stuff. In the beginning, the site was small and I could do all the moderating by myself. Over time, I've shared the moderation duties with people that have demonstrated a great deal of decency and generosity. I don't give them any real instructions. I just say "do what you've always done. But with the keys to the joint. If you see a bad thing, try to make it less bad. But only if you feel like it."
 
paul wheaton
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we have to obey and pay respect to the sheriffs whatever they do...

Well, just to clarify, nobody has to do anything that anybody says. Of course, some choices could land you in jail. The worst that could happen here is that your stuff could be deleted and/or you could be banned.
 
Joe Pluta
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I think censoring isn't the right word here. "Moderating" would be a better fit.
It was the parting shot that I found to be bordering on censorship, Paul. Given your statement that you don't want people saying "less than charming" things about one another, I think a moderator telling someone to "get a f*ing job" is rather out of line. It's not WHAT Michael did, it's how he did it that I was questioning.
And of course ultimately it's your site to do with as you please. I'm just pointing out what seems to me to be a logical inconsistency. It ain't all that important, and I really only posted it here to see what the rest of the folks and you in particular thought. Thanks for taking the time to respond.
Joe
 
paul wheaton
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I think sometimes the priorities here are a little skewed, but that's just my opinion and everyone's got one.

Perhaps you are thinking that somewhere we have a list of priorities that we follow. There's nothing like that. The staff pretty much wander around and when they encounter something stinky, they try to make it less stinky. This is an unpaid thing, so they get to do it however they feel is a good way to do it. Granted, different staff have different ideas on what to do.
I suppose if each staff position was paid I could make a big-book-o-procedure and require all of the staff to follow it. And once a week we could have meetings and talk about how to improve procedure. Yuck!
I don't think the conversation was anywhere near as heated as ones that have been left to run for pages and pages

If there is a thread with nasty stuff that isn't getting deleted by staff, let me know and I'll delete it. "Heated" is something I don't want to see here.
 
Joe Pluta
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I suppose if each staff position was paid I could make a big-book-o-procedure and require all of the staff to follow it. And once a week we could have meetings and talk about how to improve procedure. Yuck.
[laughing]
Oh yeah, that'd work. I'd be REAL interested in seeing the first JavaRanch Procedures Acceptance Meeting...

Joe
 
paul wheaton
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As close as I can tell, then, my posts were wrong for telling someone they were "less than charming". It's not my job. A moderator should have been doing that.

A staffer should not imply that anybody on JavaRanch is less than perfect either.
The key is that you can talk about issues. You can talk about people outside of JavaRanch. You can even talk about people using JavaRanch. But the thing that I don't want here are messages that imply that anybody on JavaRanch is less than perfect.
I didn't care for the personal attacks on Natalie

I think you and I agree abou this. There are several things that you can do to remedy this: e-mail the author; e-mail the forum moderator; e-mail a sheriff; etc. You could also publicly say something less than kind to the author, but then, you would be compounding the problem.

I think a moderator telling someone to "get a f*ing job" is rather out of line

Perhaps you could e-mail me a link to the thread.
 
Joe Pluta
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You could also publicly say something less than kind to the author, but then, you would be compounding the problem.
Once again, thank you Paul. I'll send you the link, but I'm quite clear about what you've outlined. I erred in saying less-than-nice things, period. If I see someone being less-than-nice, simply let someone know.
Joe
 
Thomas Paul
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Originally posted by Joe Pluta:
Once again, thank you Paul. I'll send you the link, but I'm quite clear about what you've outlined. I erred in saying less-than-nice things, period. If I see someone being less-than-nice, simply let someone know.
Joe

I think that we all need to remember that one big rule that was sitting there when we registered:
Be Nice!
Joe, if you see a post that violates the rule feel free to post a reminder in the thread and let a sheriff or the forum moderator know about it. It takes a little bit of getting used to for all of us that this is not a typical forum with nastiness being the rule.
[ December 16, 2003: Message edited by: Thomas Paul ]
 
Joe Pluta
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[laughing]
Here's an example of me going berserk, and Paul trying to salvage something out of it:
(** icky quote removed - PW)
I believe your understanding of (** icky stuff removed - PW). You cannot (** ditto).
The fact that you (** ditto).
Joe
[ December 16, 2003: Message edited by: Paul Wheaton ]


Now THAT says volumes about how answering a bad post sometimes simply creates another bad post . Try saying the edited version out loud and then simply pausing at each "bleeped" section. It's quite amusing. (It's even more amusing to add your own "bleep" sound, but people may look at you funny.)
Thanks, Paul!
(Cripes, I REALLY need to lay off the caffeine, eh? )
Joe
 
paul wheaton
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A coupla philosophies that might apply:

  • If you ain't getting pissed off, you don't care
  • If you ain't pissing somebody off, you ain't living

  • Of course, as with all things .... moderation ...
 
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