Author Topic: Our current problem II  (Read 7872 times)

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Offline DJ Omnimaga

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Our current problem II
« on: September 05, 2011, 09:36:17 pm »
As you know, both the site and channel attracted a lot of new users and, as a result, a wider range of type of people. This is not bad, as this allowed the site to grow, but of course there are higher chances of having to deal with offensive/provocative remarks from certain members who are still not familiar with Omnimaga's mentality or the policies that I instated during the 2 years I was root admin.

Initially, because Omnimaga was meant to be free of hostile remarks, this meant that freedom of speech over here was limited, like how certain other sites limits it by disallowing swearing or certain topics of discussions. On some other sites it's not limited at all (well... providing it remains within legality). In both cases, that free speech or lack of it was equal among every member, meaning nobody received a special treatment in their favor or disadvantage. However, recently I have noticed a new trend over #omnimaga/OmnomIRC main channel that also happened in the past on certain other calculator sites. This is the second time this happen within the last two weeks and I'm not liking it, because I fear moderators will take that habit in the future and that it will get worse, to the point of hurting the community. I myself am not planning to stay around if that is the new Omnimaga policy since I retired or if it's just gonna happen more and more.

The problem now is that in two occasions, there were some rather offensive remarks or  lines of text subject to being interpreted as offensive to certain groups of people that were said on OmnomIRC. Even though the person was not within the forum/IRC rules, there were no indication of warnings given in the channel. However, when people started to defend themselves, they were practically told to shut up, while the offender simply got away with it.

The first incident involved a remark implying that people under grade 5 are not welcome on the forums and that the ones who spell badly or people who don't do much effort to spell properly should be banned. Granted, people should not abuse our language, but to the point of banning legitimately good contributing members who have poor grammar/spelling would be uncalled for here. However, when I told that person that was uncalled for, I was pretty much told I was going too far. There were no indication of public warning at this exact time towards the other person, which, from what people might read in the logs, meant that he was allowed to bash an entire group of people or age and that everyone who disagree aren't allowed to voice their views. Basically, punishment looked like it was one-sided, in favor of the offender. Later I learned he was warned for the same thing before, but it was not stated now, so it's subject to misinterpretation.

The second incident involved gay bashing in the channel. The person got away with his offensive remarks, then when people tried to defend themselves, they were all told to stop that convo, not even giving the other side a chance to defend themselves or to call the person out.

I'm not sure if this is a change of policy on Omnimaga now that I am no longer admin, but I disliked how the events above were dealt in an one-sided way in favor of the offender instead of equaly for everyone. Back in the days, this happened on another forum around 2003-08, especially 2008, where people would bash BASIC games freely, but the minute someone defended them he was told to shut up or that he was immature. On another forum in 2009, people would be rude to others, despite the rules disallowing that, nothing would be done, but when someone defended himself, he was told to go back on topic. The latter incident even lead to a boycott of that forum during about two months, which, combined with several unrelated downtimes, that forum never recovered from. Both forums today are nearly desert towns.

I am voicing my concern now because I noticed this started to happen too much for my tastes here lately, it's the second moderator in a row that does it, and I hope this doesn't become the way every rule violation case are dealt with, in favor of certain people, otherwise I do not think I am going to be as active in #omnimaga if it does and I'm sure the people that left other sites because that happened there will not like if Omnimaga channel becomes the same way.
« Last Edit: September 05, 2011, 09:42:47 pm by DJ_O »

Offline Xeda112358

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Re: Our current problem II
« Reply #1 on: September 05, 2011, 11:06:46 pm »
There are a few things that bug me about this, but before I get to those I would like to thank the person that advised me to stop. I know that I would have made matters worse if I kept that little war going, so thanks. Anyway, what bugs me is that we have shown that we can be responsible. I mean, for crying out loud, we had a religion thread that didn't end in a fight and it had several points of view present. That is not a feat that is easy to achieve, especially with many members from around the world. I had thought that we as a community had reached a new level of tolerance and I was very happy about that. I still think we have and I am personally proud to say that I got to witness that. However, tonight was an example where at least one member showed intolerance and another (myself) was almost ready to be just as bad by not respecting their opinion.

Again, I am glad that I was stopped from getting angry again because "gay bashing" is something that I particularly don't like. In retrospect, I can understand the offender's argument, but that still doesn't mean that I like it. The responsible thing, though, would have been to take the argument to a private channel. The reason why I take such offense is that not only do I have many gay, lesbian, and bisexual friends, but I am bisexual, too. I am attracted to men and I am attracted to women. If I were to marry a man or a woman, I would still want that marriage to be just as sacred and held with the same honor and, incidentally, I am getting married. The plans have been in the works for a while now, but next month will be one of the biggest days of my life and I will be marrying a woman that I would go to the ends of the earth for and that I want to be with for the rest of my life. I am just shy of 20 years old and it has been hypothesized that the first human to live to 150 years old has already been born. I am fully aware that I may get the chance to live for the next 130 years with her and I am ready for a commitment like that. So when somebody is willing to commit their whole life to start a new one with the person they love, I believe that their marriage deserves to be called a marriage, even if it is a same-sex marriage, regardless of what a dictionary says.

If this post needs to be removed for offensive material or whatnot, I will understand. Thanks and I am sorry if I offend anybody.

Offline DJ Omnimaga

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Re: Our current problem II
« Reply #2 on: September 05, 2011, 11:20:43 pm »
It might be fine to not tolerate something, but when it comes to things such as hating a religion or group of people or even being against their actions, I think it's best that they just keep all of their comments for themselves. It's obvious that people of those groups or people who got friends in those groups will get offended. After all, notice how the last person that was intolerant toward a group of people here got permbanned (although the permban was more because of the channel takeover). If the person doesn't care about other people feelings or that their comment might be misinterpreted, then he is narrow-minded as much as the actual haters of specific groups, and narrow minded people aren't welcome on Omnimaga.

That said, the topic was more regarding the fact that in two recent occasions, some people were reprimanded after they defended themselves while the other person did not get reprimanded right away. As for if the moderator only saw the final end of the convo, I think it might be best in the future to check where it started, to make sure to apply punishments/warnings/other things equally on everyone involved in the discussion, depending of if what they say was appropriate or not.
« Last Edit: September 05, 2011, 11:21:51 pm by DJ_O »

Offline fb39ca4

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Re: Our current problem II
« Reply #3 on: September 05, 2011, 11:37:12 pm »
I agree with that, DJ. However, in the future, we need to respond to incidents like these without more flames and spamming. I also believe that we are all entitled to our own opinions and beliefs, however we should refrain from sharing them if they will offend people. Threatening to ban people if they don't change their beliefs is also not the way to go, warning people they will be banned if they keep on making offensive remarks is.

Offline imo_inx

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Re: Our current problem II
« Reply #4 on: September 06, 2011, 08:25:36 am »
You could have to take some type of quiz to use Omnom?
Anyways, I think that some of the growth may be due to our downloads.


Offline mdjenkins86

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Re: Our current problem II
« Reply #5 on: September 06, 2011, 10:14:05 am »
I always defended BASIC, as you know... it was just harder to pull off on certain platforms.  I remember back in 2004/05 when I was on Omnimaga; there was no bashing of any kind... then again the community was much smaller.  Everyone had great pride in their projects and there was plenty of encouragement to go around. 

I imagine that if I had a website that I wouldn't want anyone to feel uncomfortable for being themselves or sharing a viewpoint...

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Re: Our current problem II
« Reply #6 on: September 06, 2011, 10:20:21 am »
I've been on vacation. I just got back and saw this topics and read the logs. I'm disappointed with what I saw. As long as I'm here there will be NO discriminating or hate towards someone because of their sexual orientation, ethnicity, religion or age. That is completely unacceptable. Thankyou.

Offline Hot_Dog

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Re: Our current problem II
« Reply #7 on: September 06, 2011, 10:54:13 am »
"Better late than never."  Meaning, if we reprimand the people who defend themselves without realising that someone else started the fight in the first place, we should be able to read the logs, copy/paste the piece of evidence and warn the person who started the fight.

However, it certainly doesn't do much to help the person who was bashed for simply defending himself.

Offline TravisE

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Re: Our current problem II
« Reply #8 on: September 06, 2011, 11:27:47 am »
I agree with that, DJ. However, in the future, we need to respond to incidents like these without more flames and spamming. I also believe that we are all entitled to our own opinions and beliefs, however we should refrain from sharing them if they will offend people. Threatening to ban people if they don't change their beliefs is also not the way to go, warning people they will be banned if they keep on making offensive remarks is.

I agree. And while it makes sense to warn repeat offenders about the eventual consequences, I would be concerned about doing this to newcomers due to the risk of chasing more sensitive people away from a site or even the whole community.  I definitely consider myself pretty sensitive in this regard, and if I were threatened with, say, a permaban the very first time I accidentally did something wrong even when I weren't trying to, I think there's a chance I would conclude the place is too hostile and simply leave.

I also agree with DJ_O that ideally, just the offender should be stopped, but I wonder if this is actually possible 100% of the time. It's a good policy in clear-cut cases whenever possible, but otherwise, where every person could have a different opinion on who was offensive and who wasn't, it seems that the only option other than allow the fight/flame war to break out is to stop everyone—I think this is why admins of various places often tell everyone involved to take it elsewhere or (in the case of forums) lock threads, which has the same effect.

Just a reminder: I don't claim to be right all the time. I'm open to other viewpoints, and I understand that the admins here are free to do whatever they want. I really hope I won't be misinterpreted.
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Offline DJ Omnimaga

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Re: Our current problem II
« Reply #9 on: September 06, 2011, 01:18:19 pm »
I always defended BASIC, as you know... it was just harder to pull off on certain platforms.  I remember back in 2004/05 when I was on Omnimaga; there was no bashing of any kind... then again the community was much smaller.  Everyone had great pride in their projects and there was plenty of encouragement to go around. 

I imagine that if I had a website that I wouldn't want anyone to feel uncomfortable for being themselves or sharing a viewpoint...
Actually there weren't BASIC bashing here yet either, it was more on IRC that from time to time, we get an occasional member who can cause trouble and when it happens, it doesn't involve BASIC like it did on other forums in the past. Also actually on the old site it was much worse than this one (although still far less bad than elsewhere) after you left. When you were around there were only about 8 people around, so there were less chances of troubles. In general I would say things are going pretty well around here, though. I was just worried above that moderators would take bad habits of calling out people who defends themselves without punishing the person that was the source of the problem, which happened several times before on some other calculator sites.

Offline mdjenkins86

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Re: Our current problem II
« Reply #10 on: September 06, 2011, 02:30:35 pm »
Okay I see

Offline FinaleTI

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Re: Our current problem II
« Reply #11 on: September 06, 2011, 03:07:54 pm »
I don't usually frequent IRC, so I was unaware of this issue...
I guess I'll have to start visiting more often, to see if I can help alleviate an issue if it starts.


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Re: Our current problem II
« Reply #12 on: September 06, 2011, 04:26:06 pm »
As long as I am on IRC (which isn't that frequent), I will not tolerate whoever bashes another group of people.  That policy of Omnimaga has not changed.

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Re: Our current problem II
« Reply #13 on: September 06, 2011, 06:58:06 pm »
Possibly the last post here ever.

If anyone even fucking bothered reading the god damned logs there was NO "gay bashing" going on at all.

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Re: Our current problem II
« Reply #14 on: September 06, 2011, 07:06:04 pm »
Possibly the last post here ever.

If anyone even fucking bothered reading the god damned logs there was NO "gay bashing" going on at all.

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