#62 public scolding about minor FAQ compliance should be re-thought
Closed: Fixed None Opened 12 years ago by duffy.

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My IRC nick is: mizmo

Please describe what action or positive change could be adopted based on this feedback:

I've witnessed or been victim of multiple public scoldings about violating some FAQ rule, usually pretty minor (messages spanning multiple lines, nick changes)

If someone is not intentionally misbehaving or acting out, and have violated a simple etiquette rule, I believe private message is a more appropriate way to handle the issue. This is the convention I've seen in the Fedora and upstream development channels.

Folks' behavior in the channel should set a positive example, not a negative one. When you criticize someone publicly, you are setting a negative example. You're also missing the point of the policies in the first place - the point of the nick change and multiple-line-spanning policies are to save 'precious' channel buffer space, so interrupting the channel and taking up buffer with scolding defeats the point of the original rule.

I would like to suggest a reconsidering of this policy and for minor grievances private message be used first to 'scold' the user. In one case of multiple line spanning the problem was the user's display was not configured properly so he could not type past a certain point on the screen (and his lines were not extremely short in the first place.) If you talk to someone these reasonings will probably come out, you''ll find no ill will was meant, and there will hopefully be less negativity overall. There isn't much room for explanations publicly though when compliance is demanded with no questions asked.

And if someone questions a policy, please refer them to this ticket system rather than arguing.


I'm not really commenting to make a stand, or get involved in some kind of petty flamewar...merely introducing a little context :-)

'''I've witnessed or been victim of multiple public scoldings about violating some FAQ rule, usually pretty minor (messages spanning multiple lines, nick changes) '''

Me too!, in fact...I'd like to show an example...

''<Southern_Gentlem> mizmo-afk, please read the Channel FAQ in the /topic about away and changeing of nick for away please''

Now, as far as I can see (and I was present at the time), this was a simple relay of a channel guideline which has been around for ages. There are a handful of channel guidelines I don't particularly agree with per-se, but I do abide by, and enforce them. I'll note "please" is in the statement twice..

Response:

''<mizmo-afk> Southern_Gentlem, hey! I've set my away status and people ignore it! so i'm changing my nick! feel free to kick me because that policy is just absurd!''

Now, I'm sorry - but that looked like a knee-jerk response that was indeed scalding and direct. I understand you may have been under pressure at the time, or possibly don't like the policy for the channel, but I'm not the op in question could be accused of "public scolding about minor FAQ compliance"

Perhaps we should close this ticket as erroneous, and focus on the other ticket in hand? work together to find a solution maybe?

I, for one - don't want to loose any contributors to this project and I think this kind of ticket, with the context removed runs the risk of doing so.

Yes, my reaction was absolutely influenced by the fact I was getting pinged repeatedly and I could not quit IRC because I was working in one of the channels, setting /away did not help. Getting pinged in #fedora to top that off was heaping onto an already-stressful situation.

Passive-aggressively threatening to quit being an op refusing to discuss the policy is also not a productive way to field the issue you referenced above, and would have been better served with a calm reference to this ticket system in PRIVMSG.

I don't understand how refusing to help someone until they do what you tell them to do (seen that) or repeating the same message multiple times (seen that) or honestly just a one-line reference to the faq helps with the goal of keeping the 'precious channel buffer' as pristine as the rules seem to intend it to be.

BTW Here are Freenode's recommendations on handling issues in the channel:
http://blog.freenode.net/2007/05/silence-is-golden-handling-trolls-and-spammers/

Their first recommendation is:

"Take conversations to a private forum, channel or a private query message. This is true even if you’re trying to get the attention of someone who might be able to kick/ban the troll/spammer. Your lack of reaction on the channel is quite boring to the troll or spammer and will only make them lose interest more quickly."

Please consider Freenode's advice.

''Yes, my reaction was absolutely influenced by the fact I was getting pinged repeatedly and I could not quit IRC because I was working in one of the channels, setting /away did not help. Getting pinged in #fedora to top that off was heaping onto an already-stressful situation. ''

Sorry to hear that, I hope things calmed down a bit for you

''Passive-aggressively threatening to quit being an op refusing to discuss the policy is also not a productive way to field the issue you referenced above, and would have been better served with a calm reference to this ticket system in PRIVMSG. ''

I don't think you offered or tried to discuss the policy, moreover you aggressively stated that you were not going to abide by it, and that you should be kicked if he didn't like it. fwiw, I think many ops would have done so (in accordance with the channel guidelines)(although thats entirely beside the point) because it was an unnecessary response to a polite request. Instead, Ben decided not to engage you, more power to him for moving the situation forward.

''I don't understand how refusing to help someone until they do what you tell them to do (seen that) or repeating the same message multiple times (seen that) or honestly just a one-line reference to the faq helps with the goal of keeping the 'precious channel buffer' as pristine as the rules seem to intend it to be.''

Have I missed something, or does that paragraph belong in another ticket already discussed. I think this ticket is aimed at a specific nick-changing incident? could be wrong though:-)

''Their first recommendation is:

"Take conversations to a private forum, channel or a private query message. This is true even if you’re trying to get the attention of someone who might be able to kick/ban the troll/spammer. Your lack of reaction on the channel is quite boring to the troll or spammer and will only make them lose interest more quickly."

Please consider Freenode's advice. ''

Sooo, if I read this correctly, when he politely asked you to read the channel FAQ, and you abruptly refused...this refusal and defiance should have been done in a /pm from yourself to Ben?

Again - I may well be miss-interpreting the situation...its just how I see it

"Instead, Ben decided not to engage you, more power to him for moving the situation forward. "

No, the conversation continued privately.

"I think this ticket is aimed at a specific nick-changing incident? could be wrong though:-) "

No, it's not. It's in response to multiple things I've witnessed over the past few weeks of being in the channel. See the other ticket I filed (I think it was ticket 56) where someone was refused help until they stopped cutting their lines slightly short -it turned out the person had an issue with their display that preventing them from typing longer lines.

"Sooo, if I read this correctly, when he politely asked you to read the channel FAQ, and you abruptly refused...this refusal and defiance should have been done in a /pm from yourself to Ben?"

Please read Freenode's advice without the specific lens of a previous petty flamewar you've already stated you have no desire to drudge up. (Please stop doing that, please. You said you weren't going to. Please.)

''No, the conversation continued privately.''

So, in actual fact - He did indeed follow freenode's recommendations

''No, it's not. It's in response to multiple things I've witnessed over the past few weeks of being in the channel. See the other ticket I filed (I think it was ticket 56) where someone was refused help until they stopped cutting their lines slightly short -it turned out the person had an issue with their display that preventing them from typing longer lines. ''

Sorry about that, as we already established..that particular helper isn't a #fedora op, and is doing it in his own time. We can do little about his personal preferences, nor force him to help ;-(

''Please read Freenode's advice without the specific lens of a previous petty flamewar you've already stated you have no desire to drudge up. (Please stop doing that, please. You said you weren't going to. Please.) ''

Totally agree. Please lets do the following

1) address the channel guidelines at the next meeting
2) not loose any more ops
3) (optional) group hug?

I hope you don't think I'm flaming, or trolling...I'm not the type :-)

"So, in actual fact - He did indeed follow freenode's recommendations "

No, I was the one who brought it to privmsg.

"Sorry about that, as we already established..that particular helper isn't a #fedora op, and is doing it in his own time. We can do little about his personal preferences, nor force him to help ;-( "

Okay, again, that's a specific example. I've seen it happen a few times. I can't file a ticket every time I see something, it would be a waste of both our times.

"Totally agree. Please lets do the following
1) address the channel guidelines at the next meeting 2) not loose any more ops 3) (optional) group hug? "

I want absolutely nothing more to do with #fedora at this time. I filed two tickets because I told Nirik I would.

"I hope you don't think I'm flaming, or trolling...I'm not the type :-) "

Starting a ticket out talking about how you don't want to take sides or dredge up flames then proceeding to do that over multiple comments doesn't inspire confidence.

So, I'm not a fan of PM's for lots of things, but perhaps there is a place here...

Pros:

  • As you note you can avoid raising the channel temperature by talking to someone directly.
  • People may feel better about being reminded of rules in private.
  • People may notice a PM more than a message in channel if they are busy or in lots of channels.

Cons:

  • Other folks in channel will not see the note and if they too later do that same thing, they will also need to be PM'ed about it. "But bob did it the other day and no one said anything"
  • PM'ed people may decide to directly PM that OP/person for questions or issues the entire community of the channel could help/answer with. Making them more of a single point of non peer reviewed failure.
  • People getting a PM have no way of knowing this is from a operator or someone in authority (although if a faq link is provided that might help, since anyone could do that).
  • Several op's/interested channel members might see something and all at once PM the person. They could get overloaded by a group of PM's.
  • Some people disable private messages or don't notice/see PM tabs or windows.

As an idea, perhaps we could leverage a bot here? have a 'pm so and so msg' Some of them could optionally provide a general guideline to the channel...

ie, someone curses, an operator tells the bot to msg the person reminding them to be polite, and also sends a channel message asking everyone to be polite. Anyhow, just my thoughts... thanks for bringing this up.

At the 2011-06-23 meeting folks did not wish to change policy about using PM's for warnings or minor issues. My idea for a bot function was also not liked.

So, for now we will continue to use the channel. Note that any such things should be polite and professional.

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