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envirozentinel
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29 Jul 2020, 9:54 am

It's come to our attention that certain valued members feel they can't trust the mod team anymore and feel sidelined. They believe that their concerns are being overlooked or ignored by the moderation team. At this particular time there are just four active mods who can't see everything on every thread or even visit every forum on a daily basis, as we all have work and other offline commitments to attend to, so not every matter gets addressed as soon as they should. Some of the others have family or personal matters to attend to and cannot currently perform their duties.

We encourage members to continue addressing their concerns in one of three ways: the Mod Attention thread, the report button or a PM to one of the Mods. We are not perfect by any means, but we are making an effort to communicate and to address any concerns you have.

Any suggestions, recommendations etc are also welcomed.

When I first joined, I found the site to be wonderfully supportive - my goal was to find out as much info as possible about the Autism spectrum and utilise that knowledge to help others as well as myself. Since then, there seems to have been a bit of a slow decline in membership participation as well as a few incidents notably one a few years ago which upset many members here, including myself to the point that it emotionally drained me for some time until input from other members helped me put it in perspective - I found out they had all been subjected to emotional abuse from the person involved. Things got better on here again, but when the US election business started, things got overheated on PPR and News. L&D also has its fair share of bad feeling.

We want to be fair minded to all our membership irrespective of their political or religious affiliation or beliefs, however strange or unacceptable they may seem to others, provided these expressed ideas aren't against the rules - e.g. proselytizing, racism, sexism, homophobia etc.

I have seen a definite effort by many members to be more respectful and keep within the rule guidelines and want to thank those who have done so!

Let this be a safe space where everyone can feel at home regardless of their level of functionality. We are not medical professionals, and thus not qualified to make medical recommendations, but we have members here who will encourage you when you feel unwanted or need advice or just a listening ear. The last thing we need is for a fellow Autistic or Aspie to run you down or invalidate your concerns. Let's keep Alex's dream alive as we look ahead into the 2020s.


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ASPartOfMe
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29 Jul 2020, 10:47 am

With a limited amount of moderators and the time they have by necessity some form of prioritizing/triage, unfortunately has to happen. My suggestion is to concentrate on the three sections we know "triggers" people, Love and Dating, PPR, and News and Current Events.


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jimmy m
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29 Jul 2020, 12:04 pm

Making it Better:

At present the News and Current Events Forum is described by "Interested in the latest news about autism or that weird thing they found at the bottom of the lake?" As a result the topic is very open ended. It seems like this forum generates a high number of threads that are very political in nature. This is especially true during the lead up towards elections. I feel those threads are better suited for the PPR Forum. If the News and Current Events forum excludes politics, it might be a safer place for some sensitive Aspies to venture into. This site should be a fun place to visit not a battleground.

[I started a thread titled "Emergence of a Deadly Coronavirus" in News and Current Events a few months back. I did my best to exclude political discussion from the tread. It has over 6,700 replies and 76,000 views. I think the reason why was:
1. the subject was very interesting to most Aspies (very newsworthy),
2. COVID was a major disrupter to the lives of many Aspies and the tread offered some of the latest findings/insight.
3. excluding politics meant that people felt more inclusive to share information, share experiences without feeling like they were entering a political warzone.

I never reported anyone. But when the threads became a little too political at times. I basically said that I originated the Topic and political discussions were not allowed. And the members generally complied.]

---------------------------------------------------

Also it would be nice to know who you are talking to:
So in the displayed member profile. There might be 3 categories:
NT - Neurotypical
AS - Autistic Spectrum including Aspies
AS(D) - Autistic Spectrum (professionally diagnosed)

Maybe you want to add a fourth category SA for Space Alien. I think there may be a few on this board.

In interacting on a thread, it is not always obvious who you talking to and that may alter the given response. For example in LOVE AND DATING. There are many combinations NT-AS, AS-AS. Nice to know from which perspective you are replying to.


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envirozentinel
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29 Jul 2020, 12:36 pm

^You're right. There's so much news that's non political in nature. News about science and space, for instance, which is much more fascinating than some self-serving politico's latest foot in mouth gaffe. Politics only forms a very small part of what's going on in this world (and what we know of others) at any given time!


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Amity
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31 Jul 2020, 2:26 am

Ok, I've sent feedback to the mod team, but I'm posting here too, for transparency.

We are haemorrhaging members, good people, people that made a difference in other peoples lives, the ones that helped to keep this place stable and most importantly of all viable as a community.

The friends of WP that have left or are leaving, or as they feel, pushed out, alienated by the mod team. Are we a community where we are peers, or a hierarchy? This one needs to suit our black and white thinking, it needs to be crystal clear.

It seems like the mod team have lost touch with us, the user base, there has been a shift...

If there were volunteer relief positions available I could help out short term, or if regular members were appointed to keep the tone of sub forums pleasant, to report issues, not to moderate, or if there were inbetween positions, like building relations, or a committee to confirm no bias in bannings, but I know that there isnt.
These are all ways to bring back in the membership and hopefully there could be less mod burnout and a sharing of power. More transparency and accountability.

AC is quiet, but the predictably is more attractive it seems.

In the Haven I seen one post, deleted within minutes that was aimed at Sly, it was unspeakably hateful, hideous.
The bullying amongst men here, is unacceptable on any site, I believe the simplest way of identifying bullying, is a pattern, as of now there is no rule to protect people from bullying.

People who post off topic and derail threads with the same narrative are not being considerate of others. It might not be against the rules but it's a fair usage abuse to expect the whole site to just be ok with this.

Its these instances, that are outside the rules that cause issues. There needs to be a clear path to consistent action for dealing with these outside issues.

I often estimate that those given the most chances are the ones who are most likely to take it for granted and land Mods in trouble with the membership because of the inconsistencies, or perhaps they are by nature the most corrupt and lack self awareness.


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Amity
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31 Jul 2020, 2:28 am

jimmy m wrote:
Making it Better:

At present the News and Current Events Forum is described by "Interested in the latest news about autism or that weird thing they found at the bottom of the lake?" As a result the topic is very open ended. It seems like this forum generates a high number of threads that are very political in nature. This is especially true during the lead up towards elections. I feel those threads are better suited for the PPR Forum. If the News and Current Events forum excludes politics, it might be a safer place for some sensitive Aspies to venture into. This site should be a fun place to visit not a battleground.

[I started a thread titled "Emergence of a Deadly Coronavirus" in News and Current Events a few months back. I did my best to exclude political discussion from the tread. It has over 6,700 replies and 76,000 views. I think the reason why was:
1. the subject was very interesting to most Aspies (very newsworthy),
2. COVID was a major disrupter to the lives of many Aspies and the tread offered some of the latest findings/insight.
3. excluding politics meant that people felt more inclusive to share information, share experiences without feeling like they were entering a political warzone.

I never reported anyone. But when the threads became a little too political at times. I basically said that I originated the Topic and political discussions were not allowed. And the members generally complied.


Excellent suggestion


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Amity
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31 Jul 2020, 2:30 am

ASPartOfMe wrote:
With a limited amount of moderators and the time they have by necessity some form of prioritizing/triage, unfortunately has to happen. My suggestion is to concentrate on the three sections we know "triggers" people, Love and Dating, PPR, and News and Current Events.

Yes indeed, with the help of the regular members the other forums could largely self moderate.


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magz
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31 Jul 2020, 2:46 am

I like the way XFG sometimes warned about the discussion getting slippery, without making any actual moderation actions. It helped me calm down and reword my opinions in a more respectful manner.


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31 Jul 2020, 4:15 am

Making WP better... More trains and bicycles? Hehe.

I tend to break forums because before I join they seem to be thriving, but after I join they seem to die. I hope it is not me? (I don't know why this is because I don't try to frighten people off. It could just be a co-incidence?).
Somehow the same thing happened when in college. Every industry we visited except for one closed within a few months of our visiting them. One closed within weeks. I was considering telling the college not to do any more visits!


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31 Jul 2020, 4:34 am

I see one member who is horrible and very unwelcoming to the younger male members of this site. It's really not on. I don't know why he hasn't been banned yet. I've seen very nice potential new members basically put off this site because he's reported them for supposedly being misogynist or something else he tries to make up about them that's nasty.


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Last edited by envirozentinel on 31 Jul 2020, 1:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.: personal remarks removed

magz
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31 Jul 2020, 4:55 am

Mountain Goat wrote:
Making WP better... More trains and bicycles? Hehe.

I tend to break forums because before I join they seem to be thriving, but after I join they seem to die. I hope it is not me? (I don't know why this is because I don't try to frighten people off. It could just be a co-incidence?).
Somehow the same thing happened when in college. Every industry we visited except for one closed within a few months of our visiting them. One closed within weeks. I was considering telling the college not to do any more visits!

It's definitely not you :D It's the times, forums are often losing competition to other forms of social media.


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<not moderating PPR stuff concerning East Europe>


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31 Jul 2020, 5:02 am

smudge wrote:
I see one member (Let's not beat about the bush here - Fnord) who is horrible and very unwelcoming to the younger male members of this site. It's really not on. I don't know why he hasn't been banned yet. I've seen very nice potential new members basically put off this site because he's reported them for supposedly being misogynist or something else he tries to make up about them that's nasty.
While I definitely see your point, I don't think he should be banned. Maybe he could be asked to tone it down a bit? To be a little less Fnordy? Overall I like the guy. I find him to be extremely intelligent and knowledgeable on a multitude of subjects. I for one would miss him posting here. I suspect that puts me in the minority. :)



magz
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31 Jul 2020, 5:40 am

I don't think unjust reporting should be a bannable transgression - unless it meant spamming the moderators with unhandable amount of information, but I doubt it ever happens on WP.
Reporting is meant to turn moderator's attention to an issue. It's not an attack.


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<not moderating PPR stuff concerning East Europe>


smudge
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31 Jul 2020, 5:41 am

magz wrote:
I don't think unjust reporting should be a bannable transgression - unless it meant spamming the moderators with unhandable amount of information, but I doubt it ever happens on WP.
Reporting is meant to turn moderator's attention to an issue. It's not an attack.


It's the intention behind it.


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magz
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31 Jul 2020, 5:49 am

smudge wrote:
magz wrote:
I don't think unjust reporting should be a bannable transgression - unless it meant spamming the moderators with unhandable amount of information, but I doubt it ever happens on WP.
Reporting is meant to turn moderator's attention to an issue. It's not an attack.

It's the intention behind it.

None of us is a mind reader to evaluate intentions. We can evaluate actions only.
Leaving the perceived rule breaching (multiple threads on one topic, I understand) for moderators to handle was the right thing to do. The moderators investigated, decided there was no transgression and openly expressed it. What else could have been done?


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<not moderating PPR stuff concerning East Europe>


smudge
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31 Jul 2020, 5:55 am

magz wrote:
smudge wrote:
magz wrote:
I don't think unjust reporting should be a bannable transgression - unless it meant spamming the moderators with unhandable amount of information, but I doubt it ever happens on WP.
Reporting is meant to turn moderator's attention to an issue. It's not an attack.

It's the intention behind it.

None of us is a mind reader to evaluate intentions. We can evaluate actions only.
Leaving the perceived rule breaching (multiple threads on one topic, I understand) for moderators to handle was the right thing to do. The moderators investigated, decided there was no transgression and openly expressed it. What else could have been done?


To some of us it's more obvious what someone's intentions are. It's been pointed numerous times by other members too. It doesn't mean my observations nor those of others should be dismissed because not everybody can see it.

I think leaving everything to the moderators isn't a very flexible mindset to have. We need to rely on ourselves too in case the mods miss something, such as what Fnord keeps doing.


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