Kind of amusing to have Alfred accused of rudeness by personal attacks towards him...which is by the way against forum rules...[:'(]
Well I said I wouldn’t comment further. The problem with that sort of announcement is that then one or more people may post something that can’t be ignored….
You don't reference any specific posts and so assume you are including all posts that relate to Alfred.
Mind_Messing posted (post 5) a response to Erik’s original post to say that he totally disagreed with Matrix actions regarding the week long ban on Alfred and went into reasons why – effectively Matrix are wrong, they’ve mis-represented the situation and mis-applied their own moderation policy (acknowledged re the lack of warning by Erik), they’ve wrongly refused to allow him back after a week (despite Erik explaining exactly why) and Alfred, whose actions have always been beyond reproach (according to M_M) was the victim here. Apparently, according to him, Alfred wasn't rude it was always all the other guys fault, and besides rudeness is a 'social construct' so there [8|].
That totally one-sided response should not be allowed to go unanswered. Subsequent posts have disagreed with M_M’s rosy view of Alfred's behaviour and naturally give reasons why. My responses have not been designed as personal attacks, but are posts to counter M_M’s opinion. In providing an alternate opinion, Alfred’s failings are necessarily aired. Are you suggesting in your comment above that only M_M has the right to give his rosy view on this and that no one who disagrees may provide an alternate opinion? I don’t believe that of you, and that makes your post disappointing.
I am not trawling through the forum to get specific incidences as ‘proof’ as M_M unhelpfully suggests. All long time members of the forum know, and look at the names and length of time on the forum some of these individuals have. What, are all these comments made up?? The number of people that have come forward says much, as does Matrix making the decision to place a temporary ban on him for one such incident. And not before time.
Erik has said it is up to Alfred as to whether he returns to the forum. It is not as though he is being kept away against his will.
THIS. EXACTLY. So one side is allowed to discuss the issue but the other is not allowed because it is a personal attack?
I've wanted nothing more than to stop talking about all of this mess, stop fighting about all of this mess, move on from all of this mess and just get back to talking about the game which is all I ever wanted to do in the first place. But then Mind-Messing goes after Erik Rutkins and Matrix again and again and won't let it go. Sorry could not stand by and just let that happen as if it was all just one sided and unanswered either. If I get a month long ban for discussing this again then so be it.
But at this point I'm done wasting my time talking about this anymore because I'm so sick of it. You can keep arguing with the CEO of Matrix if you want but this is all of the evidence I need regarding the issue that was closed a long time ago. It's time to move on.
ORIGINAL: Erik Rutins
Your initial reply was in fact rude. Mark did respond with an ad hominem, which made things worse, but instead of trying to find a way to make peace you then followed up with a series of ad hominem rant posts, the result of which was in fact to drive an old wargamer who was just about to get into WITP-AE completely away from the game and the forum. This thread was reported for moderation and our goal in this forum is to be a friendly and civil community that encourages new players and does not drive them away.
As he who cast the first stone here and followed it up with a bucket of rocks, you've got a one week vacation from the forum to think over how to follow the forum rules. Be civil and aim for de-escalation rather than the other way around.
ORIGINAL: Erik Rutins
So we can't post links to a good YT series we think others might enjoy or get something out of now? Yes I think Lodrik offers some good Japanese game play. Better than any other YouTubers I have seen. Those guys are not newbies to the game but they don't know everything. Not that they were the Gods of WITPAE. But they still offer a lot of good tips and observations. We all do. We all get things wrong about this game. That's why we all love it.
The issue was not posting links to YT series that others might enjoy. If it had been framed as such
The issue was that you posted links to YT series with the thread title "Great Japanese Primer Highly Recommend. This guy knows his stuff".
Alfred, joined by other long-term members of the forum, pointed out the issues and implications of doing this.
From a superficial examination, neither of those videos positions itself as a primer. That seems to have been you addition. To your credit, you have since edited that post and title to make it less hagiographic.
I took a look for this thread, which I found here:
Here's Alfred's reply to someone enthusiastically sharing some videos about WITP-AE. I have bolded a few key passages:
"Every time I click on a youtube AE channel which is presented to the forum as being the product of someone who really knows their stuff, without failure I find them to be riddled with significant errors. These two links have fully complied with the usual"quality". That was 170 minutes of misinformation. It explains why all the newbie who refuse to read the official documentation, which is accurate, then come to the forum and display just how little they kin ow about the game.
It was President Lincoln who said:
You can fool some of the people all the time, you can fool all the people some of the time, but you can't fool all the people all the time.
That was said in the pre-Youtube era for nowadays with anyone able to upload Youtube videos, it is in fact possible to fool all the people all the time. The AE videos are proof of the new paradigm.
As a player trying to learn the game, that reply basically tells you the following:
1. You have shared misinformation
2. You have shown you are ignorant
3. You are a gullible fool
Now, the videos may have been misinformation, but if someone is not already an experienced WITP-AE player, they're not going to know that and it's far from civil to therefore state that they are showing ignorance and foolishness. If you don't want video creators covering WITP-AE, this is also a good way to achieve that.
Alternately, a reply like this would have been civil, helpful and within the forum rules:
"Every time I click on a youtube AE channel which is presented to the forum as being the product of someone who really knows their stuff, without failure I find them to be riddled with significant errors. Unfortunately, these also matched that description.
I would suggest that you instead read these guides, threads, AARs, etc. as well as the manual if you want to really learn how to play the Japanese side well. You may want to share these with the video creator as well, as it may help improve his grasp of the game:
The optics on this are, to be candid, very bad.
See Trugrit's now closed thread for a sense of how at least some element of the community has reacted to this.Given the light touch nature of forum moderation to date, I would have expected more than a superficial attempt to assess the situation before handing out bans. Sadly, that seems not to be the case.
I've actually spent hours assessing the situation and reading many, many threads, but I'm sure that there is more that I don't know given that I haven't been regularly active in this sub-forum.
Trugrit's perceptions in that thread are frankly not based on any facts that I recognize, but as far as I can tell on worst case assumptions based on some comments Mark made. Those are out of my control - I can only do what I did and clarify that Alfred's ban was not because of some "special" status Mark has, but because of how Alfred behaved.
I think it's important to note that I did warn Mark as well as others that replying to rudeness with more rudeness is only going to lead to escalation. I don't agree with the attacks back at Alfred, but I also made clear that in our moderation, we consistently look to see who cast the first stone. Going through multiple threads over past months, that is Alfred, time and time again.
As far as my expectations when Alfred returns from his ban - yes, I expect everyone look at it as if Alfred has a clean slate. I expect bygones to be bygones and I'll extend everyone the benefit of the doubt, but if the forum rules continue to be regarded as inconvenient and irrelevant, more action will follow.
Moderation standards being off the mark is one issue. Inconsistent application of said standards is a order of magnitude worse in my opinion.
That would be true if they have been applied inconsistently. Per our standards, where he who starts it is the one who gets punished and the policy is to remind others to remain civil rather than responding in kind, they've been applied consistently.
With, with all candour, seems to be a stretch. The norm (both in this thread and elsewhere) seems to be for a warning first. c.f IanR in the previous thread.
Yet this was not the approach adopted in Alfred's case.
That's correct and I'll explain our normal process and why we sometimes deviate from it.
The normal process is that we issue a warning. If the warning is ignored, then a one week ban. If the forum user still ignores the rules, then a one month ban, if further infractions then a permanent ban.
We always reserve the right to skip steps if the infraction is severe enough. In addition, if the poster has a past history of breaking the forum rules which comes to light too late to take action on, it will still influence the first action taken and likely result in a more severe one being chosen.
Alfred's epic rant was both enough within that thread and in addition he had a history of previous lack of civility that I felt it justified going right to a one week ban. I was hoping this would also give time for both him and Mark and anyone else caught in the crossfire to cool off a bit (that didn't work out as hoped).
See above point about inconsistent application of the standards. Here's a case in point from the top thread on the War Room currently - https://www.matrixgames.com/forums/tm.a ... age=1&key=
For reference, first time I'm seeing that thread, but RJ previously posted one of those in the General Discussion forum and I have warned him not to repeat that as "swastika trolling" is a form of trolling and that's against the forum rules. Doesn't matter if it's actually the Nazi symbol or the many older versions of the swastika going back in history before the Nazis ruined it, it's still designed to provoke a response.
Regarding the responses to Alfred there, his first reply was moderate compared to others I've seen, but yeah he did talk down to the poster and it was not really a friendly reply, but a condescending one. The reason our rules call for civility is to avoid this type of situation.
In my experience, because there is a lack of face or voice communication, on the internet you have to try extra hard to be polite and civil if you want to make sure people will not misunderstand you or potentially take offense. If you go the opposite direction and are much less polite than you'd be in person, it will not end well.
Two comments to this:
- What one permits, one promotes.
- Looking for the primum movens over a period of months will lead to a distorted picture. This is a long running issue, going back years.
I looked back months and saw a consistent pattern. If you have the origin of all this and can share it with me and it shows something else, I'll certainly take that into account.
We ask all posters to be civil, but when I see someone responding poorly to a direct attack, I'm not going to hit them with the ban hammer. I'll hit the attacker and remind the attacked to keep cool and not stoop to the same level. That's also different from someone who takes offense far too easily and imagines attacks in normal posts, in effect creating problems where there are none. That type of behavior can also in effect be a lack of civility.
To be candid, that is extremely unlikely to occur, for two reasons:
- The can of worms has been opened and views on the matter are being expressed. See for example comments from HansBolter, IanR, Alpha77 and others.
- Adopting a more authoritative position in moderation without addressing the previous issues will not resolve the underlying issues. Expecting a clean slate and a return to normality afterwards is naïve.
Well, it's either going to happen or it won't and if folks are not willing to be civil, then to be frank there will be more bans. We've had some issues in the distant past in the WITP-AE community as well and I recall multiple bans ending up being required to restore tranquility to the community. I don't want to go there, but I will if what are fair and reasonable forum rules can't be followed.
If there are unaddressed underlying issues, you have my PM and e-mail to present the evidence of that and I will read through it.
In light of the above, where one is defining the starting point de facto determines he who is guilty.
Change the starting line and the guilty party changes.
That's hypothetically possible, but I've yet to see the proof of that in this case.
This is worth reflecting on in Alfred's context. Alfred criticism in the previous thread was certainly directed at the behaviour rather than the person.
Alfred's criticism has gotten personal quite often, including in that thread and others I've read.
To refer back to my above comments, the can of worms is open. Best dispose of it in public.
You've already made it explicit that there's divided opinion on this matter via PM's, as can also be seen from posts elsewhere.
This has been quite a public dispute, anything other than a public resolution will simply let the problem persist.
I disagree that further public disputes on this subject are helpful, but I welcome those who have more to say to express it directly to me via PM or e-mail.