Robert Gentel wrote:
Actually it would have enormous costs in time. All this navel-gazing and explaining I'm doing is coming at a significant cost to my time (that would be better spent for A2K on development work on the new platform).
I appreciate the time you have spent on explaining your vision of the new A2K and responding to people's questions and comments. I don't think you should dismiss it has "navel gazing" though because, and I think there are many here would agree with me on this, these discussions, independent of acts you have taken in regards to suspensions, have resulted in some noticeable improvement in the quality of discourse. It may not last, but a lot of people, including me, are watching their P's & Q's more.
I don't mean for this to be a smart-ass remark, but if you resent the time you are taking to involve yourself in these discussions, then cut back on it or end it all together. You, clearly, are not forced to engage. This may not be the case with you but I have continued discussions within a thread beyond the point where I have anything new to add. Very often it's not a case of your not expressing your point clearly enough, it's that the person at the other end just doesn't want to buy it or stop telling you they don't understand. I've noticed a few such exchanges of yours and see nothing wrong with you ending one (earlier than you have) with a standard "I've expressed my position on this. There is nothing new in our discussion. I'm ending my involvement, for further clarification, re-read my prior post." Of course you can dress this up to be more polite, but it should work either way.
Or you can keep a log of the addresses for posts in which you have addressed any question or point which is being duplicated and respond with "I have already answered this question/responded to this point. Please see xxxxxxxx" It may sound like a lot of work but it really isn't and if you are organized and disciplined, it could save you a lot of time."
Suspensions are not typically announced because each and every one would cause several dozen-man hours of navel gazing and debate about it.
There may be excellent reasons for not announcing each suspension but again, you are not required to spend anything like "several dozen man-hours" navel gazing and debating. That there may be such time or more spent by the members relative to the suspension shouldn't concern you, or if you think it should, I don't see why this would be the case. In any case you can explain your decision (or not) and then refuse/resist further engagement which is what you are doing currently, but without the initial explanation.
And while the transparency is helpful it inevitably just results in more people angry and upset.
This may be one of those "excellent" reasons but I tend to find reasons against transparency dubious. Unless someone is banished permanently their suspension will end and when they return they can announce why they were away which could lead to anger and upset. I suppose that a certain number of the suspended who prefer not to reveal why they were absent, but this won't always be the case. In fact, now that you have raised the issue of suspensions, it's very likely that every noticeable absence will generate a discussion about the possibility of suspension. You've been involved in this forum long enough to know that a great many of us are perfectly capable of spending dozens of heated man-hours in a discussion that begins with "If XYZ was suspended then..."
Furthermore it causes situations where people start piling on the suspended user who is then motivated to break the suspension to speak for themselves and public humiliation is something that is better to avoid in general.
Someone who is suspended can, if they so desire and they have a willing ally, remain engaged in a discussion about their behavior and suspension, and I am not referring to the one time act of mine as regards Hawkeye. He hasn't, but could be feeding me all sorts of arguments to make on his behalf. I tend to think Blinkers comment in this regard is more on point, but here again, the moderators are not required to respond or deal with the hue & cry of the suspended person's friends and allies. Silence can be golden, and effective.
Interestingly enough, there has been a fair number of people who have responded to the question of this thread by stating they would not feel humiliated. I tend to think this is mostly posturing but if you take them at their word it may not be the problem you perceive it to be.
Having said this, I am with you on this one and believe it is probably the best reason for not having a Thread of Shame where the names of those banished to purgatory are listed.
Publicly announced suspensions is by far the most labor-intensive way to go about it. I look forward to some communities trying this but am not going to be one of them. I have my reasons for the exceptions I've had but have almost always regretted it afterwards as the cost in time for the additional transparency has never once been worth the effort. A couple of people appreciate the effort but ultimately it cannot and will not please everyone so it has the affect of dragging the community down into navel-gazing and drawn out drama.
The community thrives on drawn out drama and with or without your involvement has frequently engaged in what you call "navel gazing." You only need to look through the tags to see this is the case. We have had multiple separate threads on "Ignoring," "The Thumbs Feature" and use of "Private Messages." Like most communities this one very much enjoys talking about itself and its members. The notion that this will never be the case is unlikely to ever materialize without draconian controls which I'm sure you've not interest in. Once again though there is no requirement that you or any of the moderators involve themselves in the navel-gazing and drama and unless such behavior by the members leads to a total melt-down of whatever civility exists here or consumes the discussion to the exclusion of all other topics, (and neither possibility is likely to occur) why would you care?
Formalizing the rules is a good thing, it is hard to get right and obviously easier to use your judgement when things come up but the only reason there are not public formalized rules is because the rules are not formalized yet and because doing so is a lot of work.
I probably won't bother with doing it till the new platform, as the rules will be changing then again.
I don't know what you think of my EQ, nor, without any acrimony intended, do I care much, but over the course of my career I have been involved with numerous efforts to clearly and succinctly codify rules and regulations. It's never been my favorite project, but it's something with which I have experience and, frankly, success. If I can be of assistance to you in this regard, I will be happy to do so. I should clarify that I am not proposing to make
the rules, that's your job. What I can offer is the ability to not only lay them out but to identify where they may conflict with one another or where they might require complimentary or accompanying rules. If you're at all interested, you can PM me and we can take it from there. If you're not interested, no hard feelings.