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Author Topic: Proposed Revisions to Time-Out/Banning Policies and Procedures  (Read 4163 times)

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Offline Tim Horn

  • Member
  • Posts: 799
Proposed Revisions to Time-Out/Banning Policies and Procedures
« on: September 30, 2008, 09:19:15 AM »
First off, I’d like to thank everyone who spoke up in the “Banning and the Loss of Voices” thread started on September 12th, as well as those who communicated privately with us via PM and e-mail regarding their thoughts on the matter.  There were so many thoughtful and salient points—many in favor of a change to our ban/time-out policy; some in favor of keeping things as they are—and we have decided to make a few important changes.

Going forward, we will be implementing a new time-out policy for members participating in any of the sections other than the “Am I Infected?” and “Estoy Infectado?” forums. The stepwise procedure will be:

     1)  Public or private warning
     2)  One-week TO
     3)  Public or private warning
     4)  One-month TO
     5)  Public or private warning
     6)  Three-month TO
     7)  Public or private warning
     8 ) Six-month TO
     9)  Public or private warning
     10) Subsequent six-month TOs

Note:  as before, all warnings are at the discretion of moderators.  Time-outs can be issued without prior warnings for extreme and/or repeated violations of our posting guidelines.

In response to requests asking that we “wipe the slate clean” after a period of time has passed, we have decided that this is not in the best interest of the Forums. Fact of the matter is, if we have long-term members who don’t haven't developed the necessary temperament for getting along with others in an online environment – anyone who has reached the punitive level of six-month TOs has been given plenty of opportunities to control his or her behavior in light of acute personal or emotional problems – returning them to seven-day TOs achieves nothing. This would also be a cumbersome record-keeping endeavor for the moderators and would be prone to errors.

With the new time-out policy and procedure in place, fewer members will be subject to banning. However, we must maintain a banning policy and procedure for some individuals, as there are some members who clearly overstep efforts to maintain basic safety in the Forums. Members subject to permanent banning will be those who meet any of the following:
 
     1) HIV/AIDS denialists. Any member who posts denialists propaganda – including direct links to information produced by denialist entities or language encouraging members to research denialism -- will be banned immediately. More benign questions or comments about denialism, especially when raised by a long-term member of the Forums, will be handled on a case-by-case basis. 
     2) Overt marketing of a proven or unproven modality for the treatment of HIV/AIDS. New members will be banned immediately; older members will be warned first.
     3) Duplicate accounts and sock-puppetry.  Warning first to individuals with an open existing account; an immediate ban issued to individuals who are timed out and attempt to create a second account.
     4) Threatening or harassing the moderators of the Forums. Immediate ban. 
     5) Any threatened legal action against the moderators and/or Smart+Strong, or any of the staff at Smart+Strong. Immediate ban.
     6) A physical threat leveled at any member of the Forums. Immediate ban.
     7) Sexual harassment of any member or moderator. Warning for first offense; immediate ban for subsequent offenses.
     8 ) Extreme and/or repeated expressions of intolerance of racial, national, gender, sexual and religious differences. Warning for first offense; immediate ban for subsequent offenses.

These new policies and procedures are retroactive and will be applied to current banned members who do not meet any of the criteria specified above. If you know currently banned members who might wish to return under these new policies and procedures, please have them e-mail me at editors@aidsmeds.com. The moderators will review each request on a case-by-case basis.

We would very much like to finalize these revised policies and procedures by early next week. And while we cannot feasibly put these revisions to a vote, we are open to your comments and questions at this time.

Thanks everyone,

Tim Horn
« Last Edit: September 30, 2008, 10:21:52 PM by Tim Horn »

Offline bocker3

  • Member
  • Posts: 3,449
  • You gotta enjoy life......
Re: Proposed Revisions to Time-Out/Banning Policies and Procedures
« Reply #1 on: September 30, 2008, 07:30:34 PM »
Tim,

I think this is a fine revision of the policies.  It is great to see that the community can and does have an impact on our little piece of the internet. 

I want to thank all the moderators for approaching this issue with such open minds.  As I've said many times over the years, the moderators all do a fantastic job in what is often, thankless situations.  I am glad they are here and willing to make the tough calls day in and day out -- not to mention their never ending willingness to offer their, not insignificant, experience on living with this virus.

Thanks again,
Mike
Atripla - Started 12/05
Reyataz/Norvir - Added 6/06
Labs - Pre-Meds
Sep05 T=350/25% VL98,559
Nov05 288/18%  47,564
Current Labs
May2013 691/31% <20

Offline Assurbanipal

  • Member
  • Posts: 2,173
  • Taking a forums break, still see PM's
Re: Proposed Revisions to Time-Out/Banning Policies and Procedures
« Reply #2 on: September 30, 2008, 09:35:22 PM »
Tim

Thank you for being so open to revising the prior policy retroactively. I second all of Mike/Bocker3's comments on the great job done by you and the rest of the moderators.

... and I hope some of those passionate voices will rejoin the forums.

Assurbanipal
5/06 VL 1M+, CD4 22, 5% , pneumonia, thrush -- O2 support 2 months, 6/06 +Kaletra/Truvada
9/06 VL 3959 CD4 297 13.5% 12/06 VL <400 CD4 350 15.2% +Pravachol
2007 VL<400, 70, 50 CD4 408-729 16.0% -19.7%
2008 VL UD CD4 468 - 538 16.7% - 24.6% Osteoporosis 11/08 doubled Pravachol, +Calcium/D
02/09 VL 100 CD4 616 23.7% 03/09 VL 130 5/09 VL 100 CD4 540 28.4% +Actonel (osteoporosis) 7/09 VL 130
8/09  new regimen Isentress/Epzicom 9/09 VL UD CD4 621 32.7% 11/09 VL UD CD4 607 26.4% swap Isentress for Prezista/Norvir 12/09 (liver and muscle issues) VL 50
2010 VL UD CD4 573-680 26.1% - 30.9% 12/10 VL 20
2011 VL UD-20 CD4 568-673 24.7%-30.6%
2012 VL UD swap Prezista/Norvir for Reyataz drop statin CD4 768-828 26.7%-30.7%

Offline David_CA

  • Member
  • Posts: 3,246
  • Joined: March 2006
Re: Proposed Revisions to Time-Out/Banning Policies and Procedures
« Reply #3 on: September 30, 2008, 09:59:06 PM »
Tim,

I think that's a good plan.  The one thing I would like to see, but probably won't, is 'wiping the slate clean' after a certain time has passed.  For example, a new member might have issues when he / she first joins and receive a warning.  A year (or more) later this same members has another incident.  They would then receive a TO.  I'd like to see that first warning be wiped out after such a long time.  Otherwise, it sounds good!

David
Black Friday 03-03-2006
03-23-06 CD4 359 @27.4% VL 75,938
06-01-06 CD4 462 @24.3% VL > 100,000
08-15-06 CD4 388 @22.8% VL >  "
10-21-06 CD4 285 @21.9% VL >  "
  Atripla started 12-01-2006
01-08-07 CD4 429 @26.8% VL 1872!
05-08-07 CD4 478 @28.1% VL 740
08-03-07 CD4 509 @31.8% VL 370
11-06-07 CD4 570 @30.0% VL 140
02-21-08 CD4 648 @32.4% VL 600
05-19-08 CD4 695 @33.1% VL < 48 undetectable!
08-21-08 CD4 725 @34.5%
11-11-08 CD4 672 @39.5%
02-11-09 CD4 773 @36.8%
05-11-09 CD4 615 @36.2%
08-19-09 CD4 770 @38.5%
11-19-09 CD4 944 @33.7%
02-17-10 CD4 678 @39.9%  
06-03-10 CD4 768 @34.9%
09-21-10 CD4 685 @40.3%
01-10-11 CD4 908 @36.3%
05-23-11 CD4 846 @36.8% VL 80
02-13-12 CD4 911 @41.4% VL<20
You must be the change you want to see in the world.  Mahatma Gandhi

Offline gerry

  • Member
  • Posts: 522
  • Joined AM Feb 2003
Re: Proposed Revisions to Time-Out/Banning Policies and Procedures
« Reply #4 on: September 30, 2008, 10:17:48 PM »
Hello Tim,

Just wanted to ask if unsanctioned solicitations (specifically monetary) from other members is considered an offense?  I believe there was one member who was banned as a result of this. This is just a clarification rather than a request.  Thanks.

Gerry

Offline Tim Horn

  • Member
  • Posts: 799
Re: Proposed Revisions to Time-Out/Banning Policies and Procedures
« Reply #5 on: September 30, 2008, 10:40:35 PM »
Thanks for the support and feedback thus far.

David (and everyone) -- I just realized that I left out an important step in the TO policy: a one-month TO after a one-week TO and before the three-month TO (I have edited my original post accordingly). We felt this necessary, as the leap from a one-week TO to a three-month TO is significant.

As for revisiting the "clean slate" for newbies, I do want to reiterate that we issue warnings before TOs are given, and this almost always nips the situation in the bud immediately, especially when the forums member knows that they'll be looking at a one-month TO instead of a one-week TO (knowing that the consequences are higher for repeated difficult behavior seems to be an effective deterrent). Plus, if we implement clean slates for some but not all members of the Forums -- newbies vs. veterans, for example -- this is an additional layer of subjectivity that the moderators will need to consider on top of everything else. To keep things simple -- and fair -- we really do believe that "clean slates" will only lead to confusion. But we'll talk about this.

Gerry -- Unsanctioned solicitations are definitely problematic. Fortunately, we haven't heard much of this in recent years. While we ended up banning one member who was soliciting funds from forums members, this person was actually guilty of a number of offenses and had received several TOs prior to being banned. We'll definitely discuss this -- it will need to be included if we've overlooked this as an offense worthy of a ban. As unsanctioned solicitation often takes place via PM, we do have the option of preventing certain members who repeatedly abuse private messaging privileges from using the AIDSmeds PM function (although here we rely on members to report PM abuse to the moderators directly) -- we've done this before.

Keep the comments coming,

Tim

« Last Edit: September 30, 2008, 10:42:27 PM by Tim Horn »

Offline LatinAlexander

  • Member
  • Posts: 599
  • Bogota, Colombia
Re: Proposed Revisions to Time-Out/Banning Policies and Procedures
« Reply #6 on: October 01, 2008, 05:42:49 AM »
I like it.

Alex
Poz since Jul 19 2006
Initial numbers : CD4-250 VL 3500
First labs after HAART (Dec 04-2006) : CD4-432 VL-<40 (Undetectable)  cd4%=25.11%
Started HAART: Combivir+Efavirenz Aug 26 7:38 pm
Feb 08 2007 - Gradually stopping HAART cause of Myalgia. Protecting Efavirenz. Stopped Efavirenz, ahead with Combivir....
February 17 Combivir stopped.
April 3 -07 : Started ddi+3tc+efavirenz...
Gay and positive (What a lack of Identity...:) )
Looking for my Ben....

Offline keyite

  • Member
  • Posts: 514
Re: Proposed Revisions to Time-Out/Banning Policies and Procedures
« Reply #7 on: October 01, 2008, 06:22:09 AM »
Excellent outcome. Like Mike, I think mods do a great balancing act.

Offline atlq

  • Member
  • Posts: 518
Re: Proposed Revisions to Time-Out/Banning Policies and Procedures
« Reply #8 on: October 01, 2008, 06:48:18 AM »
Well done.
“Keep up the good work....   And God bless you.”
  --  Sarah Palin, to members of the Alaskan Independence Party, 2008

Offline Lisa

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,240
  • Formerly known as sweetieweasel/Joined Nov. 2004
    • http://www.myspace.com/lisanowak58
Re: Proposed Revisions to Time-Out/Banning Policies and Procedures
« Reply #9 on: October 01, 2008, 08:54:11 AM »
I say brava, as well as thank you.
There is just one other small issue that I didn't see addressed, and it will inevitably come to the fore. You may wish to add an honorable mention to the "sock puppet" community, or those who create fake persona to stay within the community. We all fairly understand that it goes without question, but if not addressed directly there will come a time.........."I don't see that in the rules anywhere."
You may want to think of a place to publish these for all to see when entering the forums, as it may be helpful for the rest of us to help police the place by using direct quote.
Otherwise.....wonderful job!......OH, and I still would love to see some form of forgiveness program over a period of time. I do understand your thought process concerning this area, but if one has behaved well for a lengthy period of time they should deserve the opportunity to be re-edified in good standing. How about an every two year clean slate?

edit/ or a once a year team meeting to review each case individually.
« Last Edit: October 01, 2008, 09:01:21 AM by Lisa »
No Fear  No Shame  No Stigma
Happiness is not getting what you want, but wanting what you have.

Offline Peter Staley

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,337
  • Founder & Advisory Editor, AIDSmeds.com
    • AIDSmeds.com
Re: Proposed Revisions to Time-Out/Banning Policies and Procedures
« Reply #10 on: October 01, 2008, 09:00:36 AM »
Lisa -- see #3 in the list of bannable offences in Tim's first post above.  Sock-puppetry is explicitly listed.

Peter

Offline Lisa

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  • Posts: 1,240
  • Formerly known as sweetieweasel/Joined Nov. 2004
    • http://www.myspace.com/lisanowak58
Re: Proposed Revisions to Time-Out/Banning Policies and Procedures
« Reply #11 on: October 01, 2008, 09:03:32 AM »
Whoopsie Peter!  I haven't finished my coffee yet. Never mind. ;D  ::)
No Fear  No Shame  No Stigma
Happiness is not getting what you want, but wanting what you have.

Offline Iggy

  • Member
  • Posts: 2,435
Re: Proposed Revisions to Time-Out/Banning Policies and Procedures
« Reply #12 on: October 01, 2008, 09:10:04 AM »
I add my thanks for the moderators hearing the board's concern about permanent bannings and their willingness to revisit the issue.  I think you all struck a perfect balance here.

I have one observation/request for clarification though on the categories of people who are subject to permanent bans:

     2) Overt marketing of a proven or unproven modality for the treatment of HIV/AIDS. New members will be banned immediately; older members will be warned first.

Can this catergory serve as the basis for a revisiting of the posting guidelines (Welcome Thread) in the Research Section, as well as an implementation of a similar Welcome thread in the Nutrition and Treatment forums?

Modified:  Also would you consider posts in the Research section that though are not outright denalist, but strongly (and have a consistent history) of trying to disprove proven ARV therapies as something under this category?
« Last Edit: October 01, 2008, 09:12:31 AM by Iggy »

Offline Tim Horn

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  • Posts: 799
Re: Proposed Revisions to Time-Out/Banning Policies and Procedures
« Reply #13 on: October 01, 2008, 09:12:25 AM »
Can this catergory serve as the basis for a revisiting of the posting guidelines (Welcome Thread) in the Research Section, as well as an implementation of a similar Welcome thread in the Nutrition and Treatment forums?

Yes. Absolutely.

Offline water duck

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  • Posts: 397
Re: Proposed Revisions to Time-Out/Banning Policies and Procedures
« Reply #14 on: October 01, 2008, 09:25:01 AM »
Saying NO;

Some will praise you, because you are assertive.

Some will curse you, because you are a bitch.

If we observe the dress code of a restaurant, then i think observing the code of civility around here is just a piece of cake.

There are so many different forums, choosing the right one to post save us all the unpleasantness.  My bitchness will not permit me to go down to 'Am I Infected ' , i know i will get banned in a minute, therefore i keep them for Hermie  ;) ;) who has the intelligence and generosity spirit to laugh with it.

Offline Tim Horn

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  • Posts: 799
Re: Proposed Revisions to Time-Out/Banning Policies and Procedures
« Reply #15 on: October 01, 2008, 09:27:23 AM »
water duck:

Your response is confusing me a bit.

Are you saying that you'd prefer that our banning policy be left as is?

Tim

Offline dixieman

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Re: Proposed Revisions to Time-Out/Banning Policies and Procedures
« Reply #16 on: October 01, 2008, 10:02:11 AM »
Thanks for posting. I never knew there was much of a problem... it seems relative to me that a warning would be sufficent to give someone who over-stepped boundries... but, I really had no idea how some people have interacted behind the scene. So... I want to thank you for posting the new policy. John

Offline bmancanfly

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  • Medicare For All !
Re: Proposed Revisions to Time-Out/Banning Policies and Procedures
« Reply #17 on: October 01, 2008, 10:10:42 AM »
A Solomonic decision.

Thanks for listening to all the voices here regarding this policy change.  Your efforts are appreciated.
"The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt."

 Bertrand Russell

Offline AlanBama

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Re: Proposed Revisions to Time-Out/Banning Policies and Procedures
« Reply #18 on: October 01, 2008, 10:23:32 AM »
Excellent!

I think this is a very good revision to the rules and regs.    Thank you Peter, Tim and Moderators.

hugs,

Alan
"Remember my sentimental friend that a heart is not judged by how much you love, but by how much you are loved by others." - The Wizard of Oz

Offline water duck

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  • Posts: 397
Re: Proposed Revisions to Time-Out/Banning Policies and Procedures
« Reply #19 on: October 01, 2008, 03:22:09 PM »
Tim ,

Please do what must be done to keep this a safe harbour that peter created !!

It is a very hard job you all doing, i take my hat off to all of you.

Offline pozniceguy

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Re: Proposed Revisions to Time-Out/Banning Policies and Procedures
« Reply #20 on: October 01, 2008, 05:28:50 PM »
I think this strikes a nice balance that allows enough leeway for people with strong opinions to express themselves but keeps the really rowdy ones on their toes.... I agree with the definitions of all the "no tolerance" issues.....who needs that crap....

Good job folks!!!!

Nick
remember the good times...honor the past but don't live there
Le stelle la notte sono grandie luminose, nel cuore profondo del Texas

Offline emeraldize

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Re: Proposed Revisions to Time-Out/Banning Policies and Procedures
« Reply #21 on: October 01, 2008, 10:12:51 PM »
Thank you, all of you.

Offline Florida69

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Re: Proposed Revisions to Time-Out/Banning Policies and Procedures
« Reply #22 on: October 03, 2008, 10:46:37 AM »
This sounds very feasible, I think it is a change in the right direction.  It is a great step toward equality among board members.  It would make me want to be a more active member on the boards, as I like most here, am very opinionated.  I am grateful for the change, and look forward to being a more enthusiastic member.  Thanks for listening, D
Nothing in the world can take the place of Persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan 'Press On' has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.
Calvin Coolidge

Offline Peter Staley

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  • Founder & Advisory Editor, AIDSmeds.com
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Re: Proposed Revisions to Time-Out/Banning Policies and Procedures
« Reply #23 on: October 06, 2008, 10:39:32 AM »
Thanks for everyone's input!  The new policies are now in place.

Two previously banned members, Moffie65 and skeebo1969,  requested we review their bans, and those bans have been lifted. 

Note:  Any members who have their bans lifted will not return with clean slates.  They will be subject to 6 month Time-Outs if warnings are ignored.

Offline Robert

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Re: Proposed Revisions to Time-Out/Banning Policies and Procedures
« Reply #24 on: October 06, 2008, 11:11:02 AM »

Well that's typical of me.  I didn't even know Tom (skeeboi) was banned.  I just figured he went off and got married and lived happily ever after...


Welcome back Tom and Moffie.  Good to see you.

robert
..........

 


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