On bans and power dynamics (1 Viewer)

Status
This thread has been closed and cannot be replied to.

coltsfoot

Wayfarer
Joined
Sep 20, 2017
Messages
73
Location
travelling
Website
audiobookbay.nl
I feel like I've seen a trend of STP users getting banned pretty consistently over the years for shit that didn't seem right. It sometimes feels a liiiiitle bit power trippy to be honest. In this -don't cross me or you'll be sorry- kinda way. There's been all kindsa fools being shitty with racism homophobia sexism etc that I'm glad STP doesn't have a tolerance for. But then there's many other folks that in my opinion just rub mods/Matt the wrong way and then get banned. To me that's a pretty big problem. sometimes i see mods throwing shit/bringing in personal drama/instigating more than they are actually working towards resolving an issue. I don't see them getting warned or banned. Not that i want them to be but it highlights an imbalance in power that i think ultimately takes away from the strength of STP. I also think STP as a community misses out big time in the long run by dimming down its diversity and that just bums me out really. 



I'm wondering if there's a better way to deal with these kinds of issues. i dont wanna just come out with criticism but i also dont have any great solutions. giving more power to STP users or not having one person have all that power sounds like a cool direction to explore, although i'm not sure how something like that would actually be implemented without it devolving into a "popularity contest" as mentioned in previous posts that touched on the subject.

i think ive already mentioned in the past that I have tons of respect and appreciation for all the folks who make STP happen and for the shit they put up with. But ya. thank you. I just think finding a way to make things a little more horizontal could be for the better for everyone.
 
Click here to buy one of our amazing custom bandanas!

Matt Derrick

Semi-retired traveler
Staff member
Admin
Joined
Aug 4, 2006
Messages
10,088
Location
Austin, TX
Website
youtube.com
we've explored ideas like this in the past, and I've always expressed a desire to have things be more along the lines of organizational anarchism in general, but logistically, that just hasn't been possible (yet). a lot of this has to do with software, some with the community and it's participation (or sometimes lack thereof).

the reality of this community is that if i walked away from the steering wheel, i don't think we have enough people to keep things on track enough to keep something from breaking or just crashing and burning entirely. there's SO MUCH technical stuff going on in the background and SO FEW technically minded people in this community that I don't see that changing anytime soon.

so, what that means is that you're stuck with me. I'm not trying to be dick about it, I'm just being real with you. I built this house, I made the rules (with community input) and have a @Staff that I am very grateful to for helping me keep things in order here. but I also feel like we're pretty fair overall. I mean, i'm going to have to respectfully disagree with your opinions on how we moderate things here, because overall, we give folks a lot of chances to be cool. The only exceptions being when someone goes straight from cool to asshole like a car goes 0-60 in however many seconds. In those cases we reserve the right to act as quickly as we need to.

so, as much as you might disagree with it, here were are. it's our house, you get to play in it as much as you want, given a few fairly simple rules. and yes, if you piss me off, you're gonna get some shit in return. no one likes putting in all the work just to have someone shit all over you for it. and i'm not going to let people walk all over me or the staff or anyone on StP. and saying i 'shouldn't get mad' is both unrealistic and a little bit disrespectful to what I've done here. that said, believe it or not, one of the reasons i have the other staff members here is to keep myself in check; same goes for them. if we feel like we're getting a little to heated by something on the forums, we've all agreed to take a step back, and discuss it with the rest of the staff so we don't do anything rash.

while i respectfully disagree with your opinion of how we handle bans and whatnot here, i can't help but feel like your complaints would have a lot more weight if you did have some answers. as you acknowledge yourself, it's easy to complain, it's a lot harder to come up with a solution to that complaint.

so... let's discuss solutions? what can we actually do to make things more egalitarian around here? keep in mind that the people that put in the effort to make this space happen are going to ultimately decide what ideas get implemented, but hey, you put in the work, you get a bigger say in what goes on here. In a space that exists in the ethereal like this, I think that's pretty reasonable.
 
D

Deleted member 125

I deleted myself
If you have any actual ideas on how to have a website like stp function without some type of "hey can some of yall not turn everything into a 4chan thread" type of moderation I'm all ears. I really am. I cant speak for anyone besides myself but of course I would enjoy not having to tell grown adults to not be shitty to each other, or to attempt to prey on young or vulnerable people, or to not spew their racist bullshit on here because that's just not cool. Unfortunately the world (and more importantly in this case the internet) doesnt work like that.
 

TheUndeadPhoenix

The Necromancer King
Joined
Nov 22, 2010
Messages
556
Location
Brooklyn (but not hipster Brooklyn)
Website
instagram.com
There was a recent surge for people to join a website called minds. One of the things minds does, besides allow racism and a bunch of other shit that I disagree with, is a trial by jury sort of thing. There are rules on their website and when it happens that somebody is banned, people are randomly and anonymously chosen to vote on whether or not the offender should stay banned or come back. Maybe this is something worth exploring. Feels very much like something a coalition of anarchists would do.
 
D

Deleted member 125

I deleted myself
There was a recent surge for people to join a website called minds. One of the things minds does, besides allow racism and a bunch of other shit that I disagree with, is a trial by jury sort of thing. There are rules on their website and when it happens that somebody is banned, people are randomly and anonymously chosen to vote on whether or not the offender should stay banned or come back. Maybe this is something worth exploring. Feels very much like something a coalition of anarchists would do.

You want a random selection of stp users to determine whether someone is banned or not? I mean...in theory ok sure. But yer asking for random people to judge if someone has broken website rules when it's already very clear to staff (and more often then not most users who arnt just here for the lulz) that very simple "dont act like a shit" rules have been pissed on. I really do get what yer saying, but it just would not work.

I'm sure it's been said before, but staff does vote on stuff like this already. Unless the post goes something like "trains go brr and I hate black people!" there is already a process we go through before banning someone.
 

TheUndeadPhoenix

The Necromancer King
Joined
Nov 22, 2010
Messages
556
Location
Brooklyn (but not hipster Brooklyn)
Website
instagram.com
You want a random selection of stp users to determine whether someone is banned or not? I mean...in theory ok sure. But yer asking for random people to judge if someone has broken website rules when it's already very clear to staff (and more often then not most users who arnt just here for the lulz) that very simple "dont act like a shit" rules have been pissed on. I really do get what yer saying, but it just would not work.

I'm sure it's been said before, but staff does vote on stuff like this already. Unless the post goes something like "trains go brr and I hate black people!" there is already a process we go through before banning someone.
One option is to have the people in the jury have a certain requirement met; some video games that have jury systems require you to be a certain rank before you can determine whether or not somebody is a cheater for example. Maybe have a certain number of posts required for a juror or perhaps a certain age on your account... Or both.
 
D

Deleted member 125

I deleted myself
One option is to have the people in the jury have a certain requirement met; some video games that have jury systems require you to be a certain rank before you can determine whether or not somebody is a cheater for example. Maybe have a certain number of posts required for a juror or perhaps a certain age on your account... Or both.

So kinda like a staff member?
 

coltsfoot

Wayfarer
Joined
Sep 20, 2017
Messages
73
Location
travelling
Website
audiobookbay.nl
Hey thanks for the responses. Yeah like i said, i dont have answers, this is more of a question to the community, to the mods and to Matt as the main tech person who could implement something new (and as the owner of stp).

I'm definitely not suggesting that anyone goes away. I think that would be pretty naive to the work that goes into keeping stp running, from the technical stuff to the social. I think we can ditch that whole conversation in my opinion. Also Matt, I like you so thanks for not going anywhere.

in terms of the 'my house my rules stuff', i get that and its fair, but to me, ending the conversation there doesn't necessarily lead to a vibrant, dynamic and diverse community that has the same strengths of a community where members have some say and stake in some more of the decisions being made like who gets banned.
 
D

Deleted member 125

I deleted myself
in terms of the 'my house my rules stuff', i get that and its fair, but to me, ending the conversation there doesn't necessarily lead to a vibrant, dynamic and diverse community that has the same strengths of a community where members have some say and stake in some more of the decisions being made like who gets banned.

Again, I really do get what yer saying, but it's also being said with you assuming and putting faith that everyone who joins stp is a good person, who's not going to cause as much drama as possible or be a prick then leave and go "lul cant tell me to fuck off or yer not anarchy". You know what I mean? Cause seems like we get at least one if those every month or so and allowing them to shit all over the place isn't positive for the community either.

The amount of time and energy that already goes into maintaining stp is quite frankly exhausting at times. And I'm not even factoring in matt literally doing 100% of the tech work.

Just going "aight I set it up yall knock it down" just isnt realistically something you could actually expect someone to do who has spent well over a decade building.

I'm 100% on yer side here, and if someone can figure out a way for stp to exist in a positive way that doesnt require staff members, or somehow makes every single person on stp feel like their say has more weight then fuck yes I'm on board. I just dont see it happening.
 

coltsfoot

Wayfarer
Joined
Sep 20, 2017
Messages
73
Location
travelling
Website
audiobookbay.nl
honestly, it feels like your not reading my posts.


Again, I really do get what yer saying, but it's also being said with you assuming and putting faith that everyone who joins stp is a good person, who's not going to cause as much drama as possible or be a prick then leave and go "lul cant tell me to fuck off or yer not anarchy". You know what I mean? Cause seems like we get at least one if those every month or so and allowing them to shit all over the place isn't positive for the community either.

The amount of time and energy that already goes into maintaining stp is quite frankly exhausting at times. And I'm not even factoring in matt literally doing 100% of the tech work.

Just going "aight I set it up yall knock it down" just isnt realistically something you could actually expect someone to do who has spent well over a decade building.

I'm 100% on yer side here, and if someone can figure out a way for stp to exist in a positive way that doesnt require staff members, or somehow makes every single person on stp feel like their say has more weight then fuck yes I'm on board. I just dont see it happening.
 

Eng JR Lupo RV323

Jerk bouncer with an attitude
Staff member
Moderator
Joined
Dec 26, 2010
Messages
1,750
Location
530 Rackerby, California
Website
youtu.be
I've suggested something along the lines of what's been mentioned here but it's been more or less explained that having casual users vote on this stuff creates a popularity contest.

I don't know what the answer is but I'm always interested in talking about this stuff. I'd like us to be able to find a way to give more "power to the people" so to speak. We'll never find a better way if we're not open to talking about it.

I think there's certain scenarios where it's cut and dry, blatant racist/homophobic shit. I don't think we need a jury beyond the one we already have in the staff to sit down and decide what to do on those situations. But I'd like the community to have more control over the less cut and dry bans.

I just don't know how to navigate us closer to that being implemented. We should continue to talk about it though. Keep the ideas coming. The random selection of active users appeals to me, at least in the bans that aren't for blatant bigotry.
 
Joined
Jan 28, 2008
Messages
861
Location
The woods
Examples people. While I kinda agree with the OP's general sentiment it's really hard to form any kinda response with just "oh sometimes it seems like people are being heavy handed."

The web ain't what it used to be, any site that survived from the web 1.0 days has gone through numerous attacks and staff change ups. The free for all days were fun but ever since normies discovered the internet it seems like rules are a must.

And, traveling ain't this free for all either. If you're not respectful and don't follow social norms you ain't gonna last long out there. People have literally gotten thrown off moving boxes just for mouthing off. Why you think it's ok here is beyond me.

But back to my original point. If yer gonna bitch, provide EXAMPLES, cause more likely than not there's more going than you might realize.
 

MetalBryan

Vagabond
Joined
May 30, 2018
Messages
188
Location
Miami, FL
It took me about a year to get comfortable with StP before I started reaching out to individuals. I appreciate there are gatekeepers because that's the protection for those of us who want to exchange contact info, used gear, or maybe even meet up IRL.

Yes the bullshit from time to time can be amusing but as someone who isn't willing to do the work of sifting through the pile, I'm giving my consent to be governed by those willing to put in the work.

I'd be curious about the proportional relationship between the number of people who get banned and the number of people complaining about the oversight. Maybe it's my own confirmation bias but I've felt like there's been an increase in unfocused contempt for what is essentially a free and invaluable service. I think a lot of the things I see related to this are more appropriate for dms. I just wanted to speak up for the wheels that don't squeak.
 

Eng JR Lupo RV323

Jerk bouncer with an attitude
Staff member
Moderator
Joined
Dec 26, 2010
Messages
1,750
Location
530 Rackerby, California
Website
youtu.be
Like the Jaun Derlust ban for example. That's one of those "Look you've pissed me off for the last time" type of bans. I like Jaun a lot and I wish we could have done something different there. If we selected a random jury of active users to vote on it(I assume staff gets a vote too?) I'd vote to bring him back. I'm open to this kind of shit, we just need to keep talking about it and figure out a method and path that doesn't create a bunch of work for Matt.
 

coltsfoot

Wayfarer
Joined
Sep 20, 2017
Messages
73
Location
travelling
Website
audiobookbay.nl
Hey yeah, just trying to initiate constructive brainstormin here. i know examples would be helpful but i've been avoiding bringing them up to avoid going down rabbit hole arguments about whether some person should have been banned or not and focus on the bigger picture.


Like the Jaun Derlust ban for example. That's one of those "Look you've pissed me off for the last time" type of bans. I like Jaun a lot and I wish we could have done something different there. If we selected a random jury of active users to vote on it(I assume staff gets a vote too?) I'd vote to bring him back. I'm open to this kind of shit, we just need to keep talking about it and figure out a method and path that doesn't create a bunch of work for Matt.

RV323 brings up a really good point that coming up with somethin that doesn't give Matt (or any of the staff) a bunch of work is a really important piece. It would be great if it actually lifted some of that stress.


The more I think about this idea the more I'm intrigued:

One option is to have the people in the jury have a certain requirement met; some video games that have jury systems require you to be a certain rank before you can determine whether or not somebody is a cheater for example. Maybe have a certain number of posts required for a juror or perhaps a certain age on your account... Or both.
 
D

Deleted member 13433

I deleted myself
...I hear the word jury being kicked around, and the last time i checked a juror is one who is impartial, and to me that's the only way to go.

Problem is - finding the right amount of juror's that could be impartial, like in an actual trial - of which, ha ha... I actually have jury duty coming up in a couple of weeks since my ten month postphonement was denied.

Now - truth be told - I really loath jury duty and not because I don't believe in it... quite the contrary, but because I feel the jurors are not allowed to consider all the facts - just only what the court will allow them to consider, which I feel is morally irreprehensible and completely un forgivable.

If one has the power to condemn, then one should have the privillege to hear all arguments right wrong or indifferent so a decision could indeed be of one that is fair and balanced - as opposed to how the court would want things to turn out, as I do believe courts can be biased, and my experience is if one is rich, they are innocent while if one is poor they are guilty.

*I know, way off track as usual with me.... I'm sorry, but when I come across yet another ban, or I research past banned members I really do read each and every word in the ban posts, which often lead me to other posts... to really see if I can find additional evidence of wrong doing etc... or something that could prove the person to be innocent.

I'm glad this thread has been posted, and that comments have been civil as I truly believe this is a very important topic which should not be taken lightly, and before you ask... no, I do not know the correct path to go - but I am starting to feel that the current path makes it too easy to ban someone for whatever reason based on who I've seen walk the plank as of late.

Yes - some individuals needed to go, but others.... I'm not so sure.

But - I also realize that as Matt correctly stated, it's his house so yes his rules, and this is something I can be on board with as I do the same with people interested in working in my studio.

edit: obvious spelling errors
 

Matt Derrick

Semi-retired traveler
Staff member
Admin
Joined
Aug 4, 2006
Messages
10,088
Location
Austin, TX
Website
youtube.com
okay, so, just tossing some ideas out here....

i think it's going to be really difficult to get enough people together for a 'jury' that is unbiased enough to make a fair judgement. that said....

what if we put a poll on each 'den of the banned' thread? just a simple, 'seems fair' vs 'seems unfair' vote? To eliminate draws or situations in which 'seems unfair' wins by one vote or something ridiculous, i think we'd have to have a 2/3rds majority or something like that. if 'seems unfair' wins, the ban on their account is lifted. also, to prevent manipulation of the voting system (i.e. someone creating a bunch of alts), every vote should be linked to an account that is at least 30 days old.

I'd be curious about the proportional relationship between the number of people who get banned and the number of people complaining about the oversight.

since we have around 200-300 active users at any point (day or night) and 10-20 new accounts being created every day (currently just under 10k accounts total), and comparing that to the number of 'den of the banned' threads, (48 total) we're talking about less than a fraction of 1%. now, im not trying to be derogatory to people making suggestions, but 'squeaky wheel gets the grease' kind of applies here.

I don't know what the answer is but I'm always interested in talking about this stuff. I'd like us to be able to find a way to give more "power to the people" so to speak. We'll never find a better way if we're not open to talking about it.

i am also 100% for this, even if it means me relinquishing some power over the website/community, as long as what we come up with works for everyone. i've always envisioned some kind of 'board of directors' type of scenario (for lack of a better term) where everyone has a even say in what goes on and represents the users, etc, etc, the main problem with that is if I put in more work than anyone else (mostly on the tech side) then it seems unfair that i should have to work more for less say in what goes on, etc. then also you have to think of well, how do i quantify the work i do compared to others, etc.... man the shit gets complex real quick.

i would like to figure this out though since this also ties into the 'punk rock rv park' thing i want to do when i retire from traveling (i.e. a living space where people have equal say or say based on contribution, etc).

Like the Jaun Derlust ban for example. That's one of those "Look you've pissed me off for the last time" type of bans. I like Jaun a lot and I wish we could have done something different there. If we selected a random jury of active users to vote on it(I assume staff gets a vote too?) I'd vote to bring him back. I'm open to this kind of shit, we just need to keep talking about it and figure out a method and path that doesn't create a bunch of work for Matt.

i'm surprised to hear that, but that's fair. in juan's case it was mostly about the fact that we'd asked him multiple times to stop posting ridiculous nonsense and spamming the board (instead of issuing warnings until he would be banned by the system) and then he topped it off with a series of profile posts that kept me up at 3am, and man, I just can't have that kind of shit going on in my IRL world. I get real angry if you're bugging me to the point I'm losing sleep. I think a lot of people would, and I personally classify that as staff harassment in addition to posting spam (take a look at his profile and what he was posting and you'll see what i mean).

anyways, yeah im down to talk this out, we just gotta iron out a lot of concerns on both sides of the fence.
 

NewMexicoJim

High mileage, good condition, needs TLC.
StP Supporter
Joined
Sep 9, 2019
Messages
48
Location
Mimbres, NM
I think Matt and staff do a fine job given the amount of work it takes to make this a great site. There's nothing like it out there. It's a special place where misfits can have a home and friends. It works really well too. The vast majority of folks here are decent enough to follow the rules and give as good as they get. In all my years of dealing with people, I find that it's the same, most people are decent. It's the 10% of people who aren't that cause 90% of the problems in one's life.

I would defer to Matt and staff any day rather than have any type of random voting. If you want to have a broader mix of people involved, perhaps you can have a second tier of members brought in but not the whole gang. You can call them "Senior Members" who are qualified by length of membership or financial contributions or some other criteria. This tier would be selected by staff for the purposes of resolving disputes on bans etc.

This would add greater weight to decisions as it involves members outside of leadership who more or less represent the whole lot of us here.

No matter what course is taken, not everyone will always agree with every decision. That is the way of things. It's ok to think that you might have made a different decision and to let it go. No one's perfect and there's not always a perfect solution to every problem. Sometimes good enough is good enough. STP is more than good enough, it's pretty damned awesome. Let's keep it that way.
 
Status
This thread has been closed and cannot be replied to.

Users who are viewing this thread

About us

  • Squat the Planet is the world's largest social network for misfit travelers. Join our community of do-it-yourself nomads and learn how to explore the world by any means necessary.

    More Info

Support StP!

Donations go towards paying our monthly server fees, adding new features to the website, and occasionally putting a burrito in Matt's mouth.

Total amount
$90.00
Goal
$100.00

Monthly Goals

  1. Paying the Bills
    $50.00 of $50.00 - reached!
    The first $50 in donations go towards paying our monthly server fees and adding new features to the website. Once this goal is reached, we'll see about feeding Matt that burrito.
  2. Buy Matt a Beer
    $75.00 of $75.00 - reached!
    Now that we have the bills paid for this month, let's give Matt a hearty thank you by buying him a drink for all the hard work he's done for StP. Hopefully his will help keep him from going insane after a long day of squishing website bugs.
  3. Feed Matt a Burrito
    $90.00 of $100.00
    Now that the bills are paid and Matt has a beer in his hand, how about showing him your love by rewarding all his hard work with a big fat burrito to put in his mouth. This will keep him alive while programming new features for the website.
  4. Finance the Shopping Cart
    $90.00 of $200.00
    Now that the bills are paid and Matt is fed, perhaps it's time to start planning for those twilight years under the bridge... if only he had that golden shopping cart all the oogles are bragging about these days.