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  Topic: The Skeptical Zone, with Lizzie< Next Oldest | Next Newest >  
keiths



Posts: 2092
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Sep. 14 2018,22:57   

petrushka,

Pointing out someone's dishonesty is not mere "name calling".

Tony,

I'm traveling right now (to see this) and won't be able to respond until tomorrow night or Sunday.

Edited by keiths on Sep. 14 2018,20:57

--------------
And the set of natural numbers is also the set that starts at 0 and goes to the largest number. -- Joe G

Please stop putting words into my mouth that don't belong there and thoughts into my mind that don't belong there. -- KF

  
keiths



Posts: 2092
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Sep. 16 2018,19:46   

Tony M. Nyphot:
Quote
What in Occam's comment indicates what he might think about Alan's behavior one way or another? Perhaps it was only a personal observation about your behavior and says nothing at all about Alan.

Tony,

This isn't difficult.  

I wrote:
Quote
For any readers who aren't already aware of how sleazy and corrupt Alan Fox is, these three comments are a good place to start.

Not one person at TSZ was willing to defend Alan's behavior in that debacle.  He is unfit to be a moderator.

Occam's Aftershave responded:
Quote
"The gentleman doth protest too much, methinks"

OA obviously thought my characterization of Alan and his behavior was incorrect, or he would have had no reason to claim that I was "protesting too much."

As for Alan's apology, you can find it here, in context.

Note that the apology only came after Lizzie got involved, via email.

And regarding his abuse in closing the Moderation Issues (4) thread, note that every other time a Moderation Issues thread was closed, there was a legitimate reason for it.

Not this time.  Alan gave the following ridiculous excuse for closing the thread:
 
Quote
As I believe all outstanding specific queries have now been addressed I’m closing comments in this thread. You will see there is a fresh, new moderation issues page, number 5. My hope is that we can avoid Lizzie having to step straight into an enormous shit-pile of mod issues so to provide a venue for more general ideas regarding how the rules etc could be improved, I (with Neil’s input) will be posting a new OP shortly.


Of course, Moderation Issues threads are not closed when "all specific queries have been addressed." They're left open for future moderation issues.  Second, Alan closed the thread in the middle of a vigorous, ongoing discussion.  Third, closing an old Moderation Issues thread and opening a new one does not make the old moderation issues go away, so it doesn't leave less for Lizzie to deal with.  Alan's excuse was bogus.

The real reason?  He couldn't erase the evidence of his disgrace, so the next best thing was to close the thread so that people would be less likely to read about it.  He even admitted that he was trying to "draw a line", in the following exchange:

keiths:
Quote
What is wrong with you, Alan? You already disgraced yourself in your handling of the ALurker affair, in which you abused your moderator privileges multiple times.

Now you’re doing it again, closing the old Moderation Issues thread for no valid reason. You’re doing it purely out of self-interest. Shameful.

Alan:
Quote
 
Quote
keiths: You’re doing it purely out of self-interest

In what way? If you insist, you can carry on here. I’m suggesting that a line is drawn. I’m not surprised you disagree. Disappointed, not surprised.

keiths:
Quote
keiths:
Quote
You’re doing it purely out of self-interest.

Alan:
Quote
In what way?

In the most painfully obvious way.
Quote
If you insist, you can carry on here. I’m suggesting that a line is drawn.

Of course you are, because you disgraced and humiliated yourself on the other side of that line. So you’ve tried to sweep all of that away, against TSZ’s interests and for your own benefit.

Just one more item in the long list of Alan's moderation abuses.  He's a huge liability to TSZ.

Edited by keiths on Sep. 16 2018,17:49

--------------
And the set of natural numbers is also the set that starts at 0 and goes to the largest number. -- Joe G

Please stop putting words into my mouth that don't belong there and thoughts into my mind that don't belong there. -- KF

  
clamboy



Posts: 265
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 26 2018,20:41   

J-Mac's behavior at TSZ is that of pissy little queen, according to those who can recognize it as such.

  
Patrick



Posts: 648
Joined: July 2011

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 05 2019,16:29   

I once made my email address available on TSZ.  That was unwise, albeit occasionally interesting.  Over the weekend I was informed (not by Gregory, for the record) that Joshua Swamidass doxxed Gregory at TSZ.  That appears to actually be the case.

I wasn't going to say anything, but I still think that keiths is owed an apology by three of the admins there.  They immediately jumped on him hard given the slightest pretense of an opportunity.  Swamidass' comment, on the other hand, has been up since Saturday with no consequences despite Elizabeth's clear rules against doxxing.  The hypocrisy is palpable.

Interestingly, the date of Swamidass' comment is six months to the day since Elizabeth asked for feedback on her admins' behavior.  She hasn't returned since.  I'm starting to think that TSZ isn't her neglected site -- it's her experiment.

Edited by Patrick on Feb. 07 2019,14:07

  
Patrick



Posts: 648
Joined: July 2011

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 24 2019,12:44   

For the past few days I’ve been hearing about more admin abuse at The Skeptical Zone.  I tried to ignore it, but I find myself still invested.  When Elizabeth was active at TSZ, under her benevolent dictatorship it was one of the best discussion sites I've seen since Usenet deteriorated.  While ID is moribund and discussions of it increasingly uninteresting, TSZ could be that high quality again if Elizabeth’s vision were followed.  I’d be saddened if it continued its current downward spiral.

As briefly as possible, here's what I've been pinged on over the past few months:
1) Three admins (Alan, Neil, and DNA Jock) abused their privileges to settle a personal score with keiths.  The details are a couple of pages back in this thread:  http://www.antievolution.org/cgi-bin/ikonboard/ikonboard.cgi?act=ST;f=14;t=7304;st=1110#entry269299  The named admins edited other people's posts, removed comments, ignored Elizabeth’s explicit instructions on how to handle the issue, banned keiths for 30 days, and placed me in pre-moderation.  None of what they did is allowed by the rules and much of it is explicitly prohibited.  Alan ran away from the discussion here.

2) DNA Jock admitted to moving comments to Guano that didn't violate any rules:  http://theskepticalzone.com/wp/moderation-issues-5/comment-page-41/#comment-240437  This is the most minor of the complaints I heard, but it's part of a pattern of admins ignoring the rules.

3) Neil abused his privileges to close an active thread:  http://theskepticalzone.com/wp/munging-id/comment-page-5/#comment-244706  This is not allowed by the rules.

4) Joshua Swamidass threatened to dox Gregory:  http://theskepticalzone.com/wp/moderation-issues-6/comment-page-5/#comment-244795 and not one admin said a word.  He then followed through on his threat:  http://theskepticalzone.com/wp/moderation-issues-6/comment-page-6/#comment-244917  The unredacted version stayed up for days until someone responded to Gregory's complaint.  Even then, Swamidass was let off with a warning.  The double standard demonstrated by the difference in response to this bannable offense and keiths' post that didn't violate any rules is striking.

5) Finally, Alan removed Mung as an admin, a mere eight minutes after Mung undid the previous admin abuses by changing keiths' status:  http://theskepticalzone.com/wp/moderation-issues-6/comment-page-13/#comment-249845  There is nothing in the rules that allows anyone other than Elizabeth to take this serious an action.  Alan, in collusion with Neil and DNA Jock, has basically staged a coup.  He has taken TSZ far from Elizabeth’s goals and vision.

Mung provided a detailed explanation of the situation:  http://theskepticalzone.com/wp/moderation-issues-6/comment-page-17/#comment-250558  FifthMonarchyMan provided a succinct summary of why this abuse by the admins was particularly bad (http://theskepticalzone.com/wp/moderation-issues-6/comment-page-17/#comment-250657):  “I don’t think any other rational theist would be willing to play along given the current dynamics that exist in which minority moderators are forced to be a token and a lackey for ‘the man’.”  DNA Jock demonstrated his inability to see it in the following comment, so FFM made it more clear (http://theskepticalzone.com/wp/moderation-issues-6/comment-page-18/#comment-250670):  “Look, if you don’t trust a moderator to moderate with out your explicit approval then he is not being a moderator……… you are being a moderator and he is being your lackey.”

Interestingly, it appears that Mung was the only admin interested in following the rules about doxxing.  DNA Jock admits that he refused to enforce Elizabeth’s clear rules (http://theskepticalzone.com/wp/moderation-issues-6/comment-page-18/#comment-250675):  “My defending swamidass from Mung’s campaign to get him banned . . . .”  Once again it is FFM who points out DNA Jock’s bias (http://theskepticalzone.com/wp/moderation-issues-6/comment-page-18/#comment-250677):  “It fits the narrative exactly.  You see Swamidass as a ‘house’ theist.  He does not act like the ‘field’ theists and that lets you feel good about how inclusive you are being.”

It’s clear that the heading at the top of TSZ’s Moderation Issues thread is a lie:  “We remind participants that TSZ is a benign dictatorship, the property of Dr. Elizabeth Liddle. All decisions regarding policy and implementation are hers alone.”  Alan does what he wants at TSZ, Elizabeth’s explicit directions, rules, and most importantly vision for the site be damned.

  
Patrick



Posts: 648
Joined: July 2011

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 24 2019,12:46   

J-mac asks the hard but obvious question (http://theskepticalzone.com/wp/moderation-issues-6/comment-page-17/#comment-250628):  “So, should TSZ fold then?”

If Alan, Neil, and DNA Jock remain as admins, that question will answer itself.  As I noted previously, the arbitrary abuse of admin privileges does far more to reduce participation in a forum than the occasional rude comment.  Alan, Neil, and DNA Jock have clearly demonstrated that they cannot be trusted with those privileges.  They owe apologies to keiths, Mung, and Elizabeth specifically and the TSZ community generally.

(Note that I’m only criticizing their abuses of admin privileges.  When I was active at TSZ, I made a point of reading all of their posts and comments, DNA Jock’s especially.)

To answer J-Mac’s question, I would not like to see TSZ fold.  I find Elizabeth’s goals and vision for the site to be admirable.  They are worth working to achieve.  There are three immediate steps that Elizabeth could take to realign with those.  First and most important, remove Alan, Neil, and DNA Jock as admins.  They’ve demonstrated that they are not supportive of Elizabeth’s vision and cannot be trusted to be unbiased.  As replacements, she could do worse than keiths and Mung, both of whom have demonstrated far more dedication to Elizabeth’s goals.

Second, increase the breadth of topics to include everything mentioned in the first two paragraphs of the "About this site. . .” page:  “My motivation for starting the site has been the experience of trying to discuss religion, politics, evolution, the Mind/Brain problem, creationism, ethics, exit polls, probability, intelligent design, and many other topics in venues where positions are strongly held and feelings run high.”  There used to be a subset of posts discussing philosophy.  Those and additional topics should be encouraged.  IDCreationism is dead, but TSZ can live on.

Third, attract more new participants.  Replacing the abusive admins is one part of that, but the front page of the site needs to be more appealing.  J-Mac might have asked a good question, but his posts and those of some others make TSZ look like a crank site.  Let anyone post, but by default show only the highest quality posts to new visitors.  This is as simple as a switch on the page that flips between “Featured” and “New”.  Yes, there will be wailing and gnashing of teeth about what gets featured, but like porn, most people know crankery when they see it.

Elizabeth’s vision is worth supporting.  I'd hate to see The Skeptical Zone become just another version of UD.

  
Tony M Nyphot



Posts: 428
Joined: June 2008

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 25 2019,13:58   

Quote (Patrick @ Mar. 24 2019,11:46)
J-mac asks the hard but obvious question (http://theskepticalzone.com/wp/moderation-issues-6/comment-page-17/#comment-250628):  “So, should TSZ fold then?”

If Alan, Neil, and DNA Jock remain as admins, that question will answer itself.  As I noted previously, the arbitrary abuse of admin privileges does far more to reduce participation in a forum than the occasional rude comment.  Alan, Neil, and DNA Jock have clearly demonstrated that they cannot be trusted with those privileges.  They owe apologies to keiths, Mung, and Elizabeth specifically and the TSZ community generally.

(Note that I’m only criticizing their abuses of admin privileges.  When I was active at TSZ, I made a point of reading all of their posts and comments, DNA Jock’s especially.)

To answer J-Mac’s question, I would not like to see TSZ fold.  I find Elizabeth’s goals and vision for the site to be admirable.  They are worth working to achieve.  There are three immediate steps that Elizabeth could take to realign with those.  First and most important, remove Alan, Neil, and DNA Jock as admins.  They’ve demonstrated that they are not supportive of Elizabeth’s vision and cannot be trusted to be unbiased.  As replacements, she could do worse than keiths and Mung, both of whom have demonstrated far more dedication to Elizabeth’s goals.

Second, increase the breadth of topics to include everything mentioned in the first two paragraphs of the "About this site. . .” page:  “My motivation for starting the site has been the experience of trying to discuss religion, politics, evolution, the Mind/Brain problem, creationism, ethics, exit polls, probability, intelligent design, and many other topics in venues where positions are strongly held and feelings run high.”  There used to be a subset of posts discussing philosophy.  Those and additional topics should be encouraged.  IDCreationism is dead, but TSZ can live on.

Third, attract more new participants.  Replacing the abusive admins is one part of that, but the front page of the site needs to be more appealing.  J-Mac might have asked a good question, but his posts and those of some others make TSZ look like a crank site.  Let anyone post, but by default show only the highest quality posts to new visitors.  This is as simple as a switch on the page that flips between “Featured” and “New”.  Yes, there will be wailing and gnashing of teeth about what gets featured, but like porn, most people know crankery when they see it.

Elizabeth’s vision is worth supporting.  I'd hate to see The Skeptical Zone become just another version of UD.

Just my singular opinion as an outsider:

I don't feel that Neil, Alan and Jock have abused their duties.

Perhaps you could create a poll and find out if the majority of users feel the same way you do.

While keiths has provided educational and informative posts that I enjoy, his incessant whining, personal attacks, and obsessive need that his interpretations of events be the "right" ones make up the majority of his comments, drowning out anything positive he has to contribute. For me personally, he has become one of the reasons I no longer frequent TSZ. Your enabling of this tiresome behavior during his boycott contributed to that as well.

As far as Mung, he's essentially a pedestrian troll and I question if his maneuvers as an administrator were nothing more than conscious machinations to stir up conflict. So congratulations to both you and keiths for aiding and abetting. I'm sure Mung is quite gleeful with the outcome. I have no problem with his removal as an admin given his actions.

Maybe it's just a personal revelation, but FMM, PooDooDoo, and J-Mac don't park their priors at the door, rarely post in good faith, and contribute little content worth discussing per the aims of TSZ. To be honest, I feel keiths frequently inhabits their province despite being much smarter. I find that sad.

Again...my own personal impressions and nothing more.

--------------
"I, OTOH, am an underachiever...I either pee my pants or faint dead away..." FTK

"You could always wrap fresh fish in the paper you publish it on, though, and sell that." - Field Man on how to find value in Gary Gaulin's real-science "theory"

  
keiths



Posts: 2092
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 25 2019,14:42   

Tony M Nyphot:
Quote
I don't feel that Neil, Alan and Jock have abused their duties.

Then you either haven't been paying attention, or you have a very odd notion of what their duties are.

The abuses are obvious.

--------------
And the set of natural numbers is also the set that starts at 0 and goes to the largest number. -- Joe G

Please stop putting words into my mouth that don't belong there and thoughts into my mind that don't belong there. -- KF

  
Tony M Nyphot



Posts: 428
Joined: June 2008

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 25 2019,16:14   

Quote (keiths @ Mar. 25 2019,13:42)
Tony M Nyphot:
   
Quote
I don't feel that Neil, Alan and Jock have abused their duties.

Then you either haven't been paying attention, or you have a very odd notion of what their duties are.

The abuses are obvious.

Do not assume or question whether I have been paying attention or not. I have followed along and read through the moderation threads. What notions I have about their duties may or may not be odd, depending on who is interpreting what is happening.

As I alluded to in my previous comment, I'm sure you believe your interpretation is the "right" one and subsequently that their "abuses" are obvious.

Unfortunately, yours isn't the only interpretation and you seem to be unable to accept that. You're better than that and I'd rather see you spend your time creating educational content.

Regardless of whether your interpretation is right or wrong, I'm trying to hint that your method of approaching the subject lessens having anyone care and, for me at least, detracts from TSZ as a whole.

Again, that's just my opinion and that's all it is, but I have a gut feeling I'm not the only one that feels that way.

I'm curious if the results of a poll of TSZ users about admin "abuses" would match up with your interpretation.

--------------
"I, OTOH, am an underachiever...I either pee my pants or faint dead away..." FTK

"You could always wrap fresh fish in the paper you publish it on, though, and sell that." - Field Man on how to find value in Gary Gaulin's real-science "theory"

  
Patrick



Posts: 648
Joined: July 2011

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 25 2019,16:30   

Quote (Tony M Nyphot @ Mar. 25 2019,14:58)
Just my singular opinion as an outsider:

I don't feel that Neil, Alan and Jock have abused their duties.


Please go through my enumerated points above and see how your feelings align with the empirical evidence.  If you think I've mischaracterized their behavior, I'm interested in the details of what, exactly, I've gotten wrong.

Quote
Perhaps you could create a poll and find out if the majority of users feel the same way you do.


The evidence exists, there is no need for or value to a poll.  Realz before feelz.

Quote
While keiths has provided educational and informative posts that I enjoy, his incessant whining, personal attacks, and obsessive need that his interpretations of events be the "right" ones make up the majority of his comments, drowning out anything positive he has to contribute. For me personally, he has become one of the reasons I no longer frequent TSZ. Your enabling of this tiresome behavior during his boycott contributed to that as well.


That "tiresome behavior" was in response to the admins abusing their privileges to settle a personal score with keiths.  They deserved to be called out on that.  TSZ is supposed to be better than UD.

What conclusion do you draw from the difference in response to keiths, who didn't break any rules, and Joshua, who committed one of the bannable offenses?

Quote
As far as Mung, he's essentially a pedestrian troll and I question if his maneuvers as an administrator were nothing more than conscious machinations to stir up conflict. So congratulations to both you and keiths for aiding and abetting. I'm sure Mung is quite gleeful with the outcome. I have no problem with his removal as an admin given his actions.


What actions specifically?  Undoing the abuse of keiths?  Attempting to enforce the rules against doxxing?

Quote
Maybe it's just a personal revelation, but FMM, PooDooDoo, and J-Mac don't park their priors at the door, rarely post in good faith, and contribute little content worth discussing per the aims of TSZ.


I agree.  I even wrote a post about it.

Quote
To be honest, I feel keiths frequently inhabits their province despite being much smarter. I find that sad.


We don't all agree with or enjoy interacting with everyone on a forum.  That does not excuse the admins ignoring Elizabeth's explicit instructions, breaking her rules, and failing to uphold her vision.

Quote
Again...my own personal impressions and nothing more.


I appreciate the response.  I'm genuinely curious to hear your thoughts on the specifics I raised above.

  
keiths



Posts: 2092
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 25 2019,23:04   

Tony M Nyphot:
Quote
Do not assume or question whether I have been paying attention or not. I have followed along and read through the moderation threads.

Note the word 'or' in my sentence:
Quote
Then you either haven't been paying attention, or you have a very odd notion of what their duties are.

Tony:
Quote
What notions I have about their duties may or may not be odd, depending on who is interpreting what is happening.

As I alluded to in my previous comment, I'm sure you believe your interpretation is the "right" one and subsequently that their "abuses" are obvious.

Like Patrick, I invite you to justify your interpretation in light of the actual evidence.

For example, in the aftermath of the ALurker debacle, not one person was willing to step forward to defend Alan's behavior.  Not even Alan himself.  

You could be the first.

--------------
And the set of natural numbers is also the set that starts at 0 and goes to the largest number. -- Joe G

Please stop putting words into my mouth that don't belong there and thoughts into my mind that don't belong there. -- KF

  
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