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Author Topic: Banning and the loss of voices  (Read 23302 times)

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Offline Assurbanipal

  • Member
  • Posts: 2,173
  • Taking a forums break, still see PM's
Banning and the loss of voices
« on: September 12, 2008, 08:49:10 PM »
Today crystallized for me a lingering discomfort with the banning and time out policy.  The current policy appears to date back to December 2006 ( http://forums.poz.com/index.php?topic=6637.0 )  This post asks the moderators to reconsider whether banning should continue to be a part of the policy for people who have been active in the community (say 100 or more posts). or whether it should be (retroactively) replaced by a 6 or perhaps 12 month timeout,

It makes a lot of sense to ban trolls, denialists, etc.  They irritate but don't really contribute to the community.  My concern is with those who have actively posted and then are forever gone.  I'm still pretty new to the forums, but over the last year or so I read a lot of posts by banned members -- many of those were by turns  informed, kind, condescending, funny and almost always at the end angry.

But they were also passionate participants in the forums. 

It's clear the forums need some way to maintain civility -- people who were vulnerable have left when they felt they were treated poorly by someone who was subsequently banned.  But, is it feasible to apply discipline at the time of those events, rather than to permanently silence a passionate voice?  A six month or a 12 month timeout gives time for the community to heal the temporary wounds, and provides a significant penalty to people who are passionate about the forums, but does not permanently deprive us of their voices.

Perhaps this is a fundamentally selfish request, but, to me, HV is still a reminder of potential loss and death.  It's hard to reconcile the idea of an HIV support forum with procedures that permanently still voices that have been a major part of the community.

Respectfully

Assurbanipal

(Edit typos)
« Last Edit: September 13, 2008, 08:19:34 AM by 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 komnaes

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,893
Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #1 on: September 12, 2008, 10:03:41 PM »
I will just add this - when I first signed up and started to post I was really taken aback by a few comments that sounded caustic and "nasty". I could have been offended by them, except I chose to see through this layer of "mannerism" and came to realize that the advises were still very sound. Then I played along - perhaps it's the multi-cultural environment that I grew up in that allowed me to quickly see where the humors were and was able to respond to them instead of being "offended".

Also, for me anyways, there are big issues and there are small issues. When it comes to BIG issues, I have never encountered any "negativity" from these forums and if you'd ask me I have never seen anyone deliberately trying to be mean. But for small issues, why take them so seriously to the point that one should get offended by a few "bitchy" remarks?

It's sad that there's so much love and care in these forums that some of us were not able to feel it just because it wasn't sugarcoated.
« Last Edit: September 12, 2008, 10:06:11 PM by komnaes »
Aug 07 Diagnosed
Oct 07 CD4=446(19%) Feb 08 CD4=421(19%)
Jun 08 CD4=325(22%) Jul 08 CD4=301(18%)
Sep 08 CD4=257/VL=75,000 Oct 08 CD4=347(16%)
Dec 08 CD4=270(16%)
Jan 09 CD4=246(13%)/VL=10,000
Feb 09 CD4=233(15%)/VL=13,000
Started meds Sustiva/Epzicom
May 09 CD4=333(24%)/VL=650
Aug 09 CD4=346(24%)/VL=UD
Nov 09 CD4=437(26%)/VL=UD
Feb 10 CD4=471(31%)/VL=UD
June 10 CD4=517 (28%)/VL=UD
Sept 10 CD4=687 (31%)/VL=UD
Jan 11 CD4=557 (30%)/VL=UD
April 11 CD4=569 (32%)/VL=UD
Switched to Epizcom, Reyataz and Norvir
(Interrupted for 2 months with only Epizcom & Reyataz)
July 11 CD=520 (28%)/VL=UD
Oct 11 CD=771 (31%)/VL=UD(<30)
April 12 CD=609 (28%)/VL=UD(<20)
Aug 12 CD=657 (29%)/VL=UD(<20)
Dec 12 CD=532 (31%)/VL=UD(<20)
May 13 CD=567 (31%)/VL=UD(<20)
Jan 14 CD=521 (21%)/VL=UD(<50)

Offline Mouse

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,463
  • Om nom nom.
Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #2 on: September 12, 2008, 10:48:57 PM »
Perhaps my definition of a bannable offense and simply an offense which should be discouraged  are skewed.

I think it's quite clear who trolls are when they come. They appear suddenly, cause a lot of chaos  and then quickly lose interest. They are certainly not people who have spent long periods of time interacting with other participating members and (I think this the MOST important part) developing strong relationships with them as well.

Internet forums are at their essence a quick and convenient way to communicate with large amounts of people very quickly. They are for meeting new people and perhaps in that process encountering viewpoints which are different from yours. Gasp! The horror.

Forums like THIS one I think need to keep that in mind more than others. This isn't here for fun and games. The focus of this particular forum is very, very serious. I think we forget this sometimes, somehow. This is here for education and for support. Some need these things more than others, but they are valuable to everyone.

I guess fundamentally what I'm saying is: I find the whole perma-ban thing a bit deplorable except in the case of those who really just Don't Give A Shit About Anyone Else or are entirely out of control and sociopathic.  I've only seen that a couple of times here, to be honest.

I definitely don't see a forum being successful while at the same time being a dictatorship. Forums are community based, especially ones with as many members as there are here. If you don't like someone, it's really easy to ignore them, and unless they are REALLY doing something TERRIBLE that's exactly what should be done.

Anyway, we aren't taking away someone's privilege to play Online Solitaire, you know?

Not to be an asshole, but there are a lot of people here that need to grow a pair and stop freaking the fuck out every time someone says something MEAN to them. Christ. It's unreal. I can't believe it's actually taken seriously as something that's bannable. I know we were all taught that 'if you don't have something nice to say don't say anything at all' shit in school, but honestly, just because someone says something snotty to someone doesn't mean the entire forum is going to erupt into a volcano of shit.

It's a sensitive subject and unless someone is giving someone advice that is harmful or doing something illegal or PARTICULARLY awful people should just suck it up.





Edit:

Shit. That was long. Sorry. tl;dr, srsly.

Offline aliveinla

  • Member
  • Posts: 247
Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #3 on: September 12, 2008, 11:25:00 PM »
Very well put Shaun.

It's sad that there's so much love and care in these forums that some of us were not able to feel it just because it wasn't sugarcoated.
4/24/07: Last tested Neg
1/22/08: First tested Poz
1/30/08: CD4 393; 28%; VL: 44k
3/18/08: CD4 218; 26%; VL: 222K
4/24/08: CD4 402; 26%; VL: lab forgot
7/22/08: CD4 405; 25%; VL: 6,780
10/15/08: CD4 340, 26%; VL: N/A
2/4/09: CD4 394, 26%; VL: N/A
Jun 09: CD4 300, 25%; VL: 4000
Oct 09: CD4 324, 23%, VL: 10K
11/22/09: started Atripla
11/20/11: CD4 405; VL: UD

Offline Lis

  • Member
  • Posts: 593
Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #4 on: September 13, 2008, 12:52:19 AM »
I miss so much the thoughts of those banned... If one has an issue, then one should block that party...

here is to.. TIM AKA MOFFIE... MATTY....TERRY...

I can at any time contact the 2 in the USA ... but I wonder... will I ever cross path with Matty again...??

I feel like this site has been taken in a way that is not so helpful.. Today I recieved a PM from a man only 100 miles away ... I loved that... But he still feel unwelcome and pushed aside..

Discuss......
poz 1986....

Offline Bucko

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  • You need a shine, missy!
    • The Spin Cycle
Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #5 on: September 13, 2008, 01:05:52 AM »

I recall when AIDSmeds was a tough and sardonic place. People's passions would erupt in very spirited debates that could (and did) flame on for days. There were cliques and gangs and various alliances both on the boards and behind the scenes. Certain topics were certain to bring all the usual suspects out of the woodwork and into the trenches. The reason why these topics were so incendiary is because they were about issues that defined who we were and how we lived. We got passionate because we were discussing passionate things, and not always with "indoor voices".

I remember a pair of guys who were lived in Tampa (in semi-retirement) but who were from NJ. They called themselves NortheastGuys, and always posted as a unit (a practice that today would probably strain the ToS here). They started out very cheery and upbeat, but never really understood humility or learning about a community before attempting to influence it.

After about two weeks of relentless cheerleading, rather soporific platitudes and much unnecessary bragging about their collection of material possessions, they posted a thread in the old Living Forum that called us out, railing on about the negativity and what they perceived as "the culture of disease" that they felt informed the majority of the topics and discussions. At first they avoided mentioning individual names, but as the thread grew more heated several veteran members with years of relationship here became the focus of their disdain.

It quickly escalated into NortheastGuys railing against "welfare queens" who'd pull up at the food pantry in late-model vehicles, or who lived on Disability but never missed a happy hour: hopeless generalizations and stereotypes were lobbed like grenades into our membership, most of whom were outraged at what was being said, and rightfully so.

But none of the mods stepped in. Without the challenge presented to us, many of us would never have discussed such things. But arguments were sharpened, clarified and crystallized and I learned a lot about how internalized stigma flavored how I'd seen myself as a guy living with AIDS. I grew and my opinions shifted in a very positive direction as a result of a very negative situation.   
 
And even after the flames had burned themselves out, no one suggested that NortheastGuys be banned from posting. They themselves decided that we were all hopeless causes and withdrew in a huff. But I took great strength from seeing how all of us hopeless causes rallied together. It strengthened the sense of community and support. People whom I'd felt indifferent toward became new allies.

It goes without saying that such an opportunity for bonding, learning and growth would never happen here today. The net effect is, in my opinion, a chill rather than one of safety or security. Sometimes nice-nice just doesn't get the point across, but it's obvious that such points are no longer appropriate here.
Blessed with brains, talent and gorgeous tits.

The revolutionary smart set reads The Spin Cycle at least once every day.

Blathering on AIDSmeds since 2005, provocative from birth

Offline atlq

  • Member
  • Posts: 518
Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #6 on: September 13, 2008, 01:13:43 AM »
It makes a lot of sense to ban trolls, denialists, etc.  They irritate but don't really contribute to the community.  My concern is with those who have actively posted and then are forever gone.  I'm still pretty new to the forums, but over the last year or so I read a lot of posts by banned members -- many of those were by turns  informed, kind, condescending, funny and almost always at the end angry.

But they were also passionate participants in the forums.  
-Assurbanipal


Agreed. The loss of these passionate, knowledgeable voices hurts us all. This community is now certainly a slightly less interesting place. :'(

Submitted with respect,

atlq
“Keep up the good work....   And God bless you.”
  --  Sarah Palin, to members of the Alaskan Independence Party, 2008

Offline Lis

  • Member
  • Posts: 593
Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #7 on: September 13, 2008, 01:31:37 AM »
Bucko... I miss you!!!

Give the damned one ALLLLLLL my love..
poz 1986....

Offline BlueMoon

  • Member
  • Posts: 665
  • Calling from the Fun House
Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #8 on: September 13, 2008, 01:52:55 AM »
I'm of two minds on the matter.  On the one hand, I've never cared for forum bans in general, and have never complained to a moderator about a member on any forum. 

On the other hand, this isn't a typical internet forum.  Some of us here are in desperate straits and rely on the forum for support.  Caustic remarks such as those that triggered this brouhaha are plain wrong, and I for one will not miss the recently banned member.

I guess I'd like to see more flexibility on the part of the forum management.  Permanent bans should be reserved for only the most extreme cases.  I say that not because the voices of the jerks should be heard, but out of compassion for everyone afflicted with this cursed virus.  A rigid "three strikes and out" rule seems like too much of a Republican concept.  We can do better than that.

And a little off-topic here, but I've noticed that most of the problem posts originate from a handful of irascible members with high post counts.  How about thinking twice before hitting that "post" button?

...................VL.....CD4.....%
-----------------------------------------
08/10-- ......<40.....290.....42
05/10-- ......<48.....290.....46
02/10-- ......<48.....481.....44
10/09-- ......<48.....277.....46
07/09-- ......<48.....300.....38
05/09-- ........51.....449.....39
03/09-- Added Isentress
02/09-- ........65.....299.....34
11/08-- ........62.....242.....40
08/08-- ........66.....212.....29
05/08-- ......202.....217.....27
03/08-- ....5210.....187.....21
02/08-- Began Truvada/Reyataz/Norvir
12/07-- 273,000.....157.....22
11/07-- 229,000.....209.....22
10/07-- Diagnosis

It's a complex world.

Offline joemutt

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,039
Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #9 on: September 13, 2008, 04:24:41 AM »
I think the moderation here is quite good. I dont know what this specific thread refers to
and i dont care. Some people seem to live on the internet. I come here now mostly to glean information
not to have my inner peace disturbed .  :P .
« Last Edit: September 13, 2008, 04:28:29 AM by joemutt »

Offline Dachshund

  • Member
  • Posts: 5,943
Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #10 on: September 13, 2008, 07:47:18 AM »
I'm of two minds on the matter.  On the one hand, I've never cared for forum bans in general, and have never complained to a moderator about a member on any forum. 

On the other hand, this isn't a typical internet forum.  Some of us here are in desperate straits and rely on the forum for support.  Caustic remarks such as those that triggered this brouhaha are plain wrong, and I for one will not miss the recently banned member.

I guess I'd like to see more flexibility on the part of the forum management.  Permanent bans should be reserved for only the most extreme cases.  I say that not because the voices of the jerks should be heard, but out of compassion for everyone afflicted with this cursed virus.  A rigid "three strikes and out" rule seems like too much of a Republican concept.  We can do better than that.

And a little off-topic here, but I've noticed that most of the problem posts originate from a handful of irascible members with high post counts.  How about thinking twice before hitting that "post" button?



Talk about sounding like a Republican, or maybe a compassionate conservative? "I don't like banning", except for the guy they banned. Freedom of speech I say, except for the people I determine are jerks. Censorship? No way, but that irascible lot with high post counts should be censured.

That's why I don't like threads like this, because they accomplish nothing. Well, other than to let some members get in their knocks protected by the topic. Believe me, I thought twice about it.

PS Here's the dealio, yo. AidsMeds is like a tasteful gay brunch. You're invited, but keep it light and breezy or your hosts might show you to the door.

typo
« Last Edit: September 13, 2008, 07:50:04 AM by Dachshund »

Offline emeraldize

  • Member
  • Posts: 3,335
Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #11 on: September 13, 2008, 08:59:51 AM »
The hosts of this info brunch, to which are invited gays, straights, transgendered, young, old, seasoned, stressed and scared beyond scared, have laid out their mission as follows.

Our Mission Statement

AIDSmeds.com is dedicated to providing people living with HIV the necessary information they need to make empowered treatment decisions. The founder and some of the writers of this web site are living with HIV, and we know first hand the challenges of learning how to fight this virus. By offering complete, but not complicated, up-to-date info, AIDSmeds.com seeks to help those that are both new and old to this challenge, and to remain a powerful resource for years to come.


They have an advisory board chockful of all sorts of knowledgeable folks who have an interest in seeing the site stick to its mission statement. That's why they were asked to be on the board.

And, they have a vision as to how the site will work best for the greatest number of people. While that may end up limiting some amount of speech for some posters, the site founder, president and moderators, even when they are wishing they didn't have to, must stick to their stated mission.

Anything you get from this site beyond information to make empowered treatment decisions, whether that be new friendships, new attitude, new destinations points for your upcoming travel plans, is a bonus of having become a member. A bonus.

But what no one should get as a result of asking about insights about bumps, bruises, boyfriends who didn't use condoms and didn't tell or any other variation on an inquiry is sarcasm that beats them down and renders them shaking their head when re-reading the mission statement. The incongruity of such longstanding circumstances cannot go unchecked nor unchallenged.

If ill-treatment, sarcasm, cynicism, bullying,  is what some members and former members require in order to survive with a disease whose hosts do better with less stress (medically proven for all disease states) then they should create their own site and write their own mission statement. And, if it's built, and has an address, those who require such banter will surely find it.

Most do not come to this site looking for light and breezy anything initially. They come in search of information. And when those intentions are thwarted before they've even had one simple taste of an appetizer at this info feast (labored over for accuracy and breadth), then the mission of the site is not being allowed to be fulfilled.

No one deserves the cruelty of unwarranted, uninvited sarcasm particularly if that is not a battlefield they know they are stumbling onto whether because English is not their first language, or whether they lack the prerequisite IQ, or lack the desire or familiarity with such practiced weaponry acquired through familial or societally-induced sparring. One doesn't have to understand the specific content, one can feel the discord of unfriendly fire, the absolute disdain seeping through the ethernet.

Sadly, some people have innocently arrived here and been bashed like a baby seal following its mother. Just because they popped their head up through the internet ice, they've been smacked before they even identified there was a blue sky to see or anything to nuzzle. And, because of such members who've been cut short and those among us who've hung in, curbed enthusiasm, omitted topics of interest or fear due to concern that forum bullies might be dismissive, or in a veiled fashion label one a dunce, the management is exercising its power to keep the mission intact.

This is a library first and foremost. A place for information. A location for calm and reason in the first stormy days after diagnosis or a place to be encouraged to get the test done and pick up the results--pronto. When it comes to assessing whether freedom of speech is being tampered with by banning a member, it should be of greater concern that those who come to this site because of the basic intention asserted within the mission statement be served what was promised--- information, and hopefully, inclusion. Again, any other wonderful thing a member gets beyond information, is a fantastic bonus.

If we are so thick-skinned that we have forgotten whatever time period we may have ever needed the straight scoop and to ask our fuzzily-formed questions bubbling out of ignorance, whether we were five or fifty-five, then read more Am I posts and those of the recently diagnosed. Anchor yourself to a sliver of your past, however distant, to be more empathetic with those who actually may need the very wisdom you hold within you.


and I end this, for its relevant bits, with Matt's (Newt's)  post of July 25, 2008 which, when I read it caused me to tune in to what bores me about HIV and what enthuses me still.



This is an interesting thread but in truth I am bored by the existential aspects of HIV.

I am bored by people obsessing about whether a lipstick is a risk factor, whether their lives are better for cleaning up, whether their lives will even be the same again.

I am bored by people wrapped up in their own angst they can't spot a really ill person (cos some of us are still).

I am bored by sympathy.

I am bored by ambivalence to meds, they work most times dammit.

I am bored by drugs with crap side effects that wouldn't get approval for any other condition.

I am bored by people who can swallow 8 inches but gag on a not so big Truvada.

I am bored by people with real issues getting the least time/voice and them with none/few (like and on the sly bj or a minor, short term rash) getting a hog load.

I am bored by crap pediatric dosing of ARVs.

I am bored at the cult of bareback. I am especially bored, and still angry at negative and untested gay men's stupidity, and preference not to discuss HIV status.

I am well and truly bored by UNGASS, but still angry at detention of HIV educators in Iran and torture of gay men in Egypt.

I am bored by myself. I am lucky but not unusual, I had to shape up, lay off the wine and acknowledge I ain't gonna die so easy and am not really all that sick. I went into spin when my CD4 jumped into normal range because somehow the status of being ill evaporated and it was kick up my my proverbial (arse).

It's just a virus, not a moral judgement, it's not some great karmic scythe.

In my experience straight folk are as sleazy and/or boring in bed a gay folk, the only thing that holds straight folk back is the downward pressure of kids/family, for whom i am thankful to say most show real love and responsibility. Gay folk with kids is no different, there's just less of us.

If HIV gets you a better life good, if it gets you a worse one, bad, if it screws your head, get over it, life is precious and you ain't gonna die easy, most likely. It's just a virus, not a moral judgement.

It's not divine justice, or evolutionary, it's just a fact.

I am also bored by Sartre, who I have deicded was a homophobe ... his big idea on authenticity in Nausea, he just didn't get the working queer class radicalism of camp.

Thank you creator for the world in its complexity.
« Last Edit: September 13, 2008, 09:04:24 AM by emeraldize »

Offline Desertguy

  • Member
  • Posts: 183
Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #12 on: September 13, 2008, 09:08:36 AM »
Interesting thread!!!!!!

Offline Dachshund

  • Member
  • Posts: 5,943
Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #13 on: September 13, 2008, 09:17:07 AM »
Sadly, some people have innocently arrived here and been bashed like a baby seal following its mother. Just because they popped their head up through the internet ice, they've been smacked before they even identified there was a blue sky to see or anything to nuzzle. And, because of such members who've been cut short and those among us who've hung in, curbed enthusiasm, omitted topics of interest or fear due to concern that forum bullies might be dismissive, or in a veiled fashion label one a dunce, the management is exercising its power to keep the mission intact.

Boy, I know what you're talking about girlfriend. Especially when you've been on the receiving end of hypocritical PM's from forum members asking you to do exactly what you suggest others have done. 


Offline komnaes

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,893
Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #14 on: September 13, 2008, 09:59:14 AM »
Quote
Sadly, some people have innocently arrived here and been bashed like a baby seal following its mother.

It's an open forum, or perhaps someone has mistaken it as a wet nursing site dishing out only motherly advises for those who feel they should always be only treated as "victims"? I would never think that I was made of stronger stuff, but I do find it rather condescending if someone describes me as helpless as a baby seal.

What I see again is an outpouring of supports whenever I need them here, add the right amount of "caustic" humors to make the forums interesting and colorful. I would really like to see an example of this NeoGeo moment.. though it wouldn't make any difference now but it would be fun analyzing it..
Aug 07 Diagnosed
Oct 07 CD4=446(19%) Feb 08 CD4=421(19%)
Jun 08 CD4=325(22%) Jul 08 CD4=301(18%)
Sep 08 CD4=257/VL=75,000 Oct 08 CD4=347(16%)
Dec 08 CD4=270(16%)
Jan 09 CD4=246(13%)/VL=10,000
Feb 09 CD4=233(15%)/VL=13,000
Started meds Sustiva/Epzicom
May 09 CD4=333(24%)/VL=650
Aug 09 CD4=346(24%)/VL=UD
Nov 09 CD4=437(26%)/VL=UD
Feb 10 CD4=471(31%)/VL=UD
June 10 CD4=517 (28%)/VL=UD
Sept 10 CD4=687 (31%)/VL=UD
Jan 11 CD4=557 (30%)/VL=UD
April 11 CD4=569 (32%)/VL=UD
Switched to Epizcom, Reyataz and Norvir
(Interrupted for 2 months with only Epizcom & Reyataz)
July 11 CD=520 (28%)/VL=UD
Oct 11 CD=771 (31%)/VL=UD(<30)
April 12 CD=609 (28%)/VL=UD(<20)
Aug 12 CD=657 (29%)/VL=UD(<20)
Dec 12 CD=532 (31%)/VL=UD(<20)
May 13 CD=567 (31%)/VL=UD(<20)
Jan 14 CD=521 (21%)/VL=UD(<50)

Offline Peter Staley

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  • Founder & Advisory Editor, AIDSmeds.com
    • AIDSmeds.com
Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #15 on: September 13, 2008, 10:11:37 AM »
Yes, this is an interesting thread, and the mods are listening.

But one side of this goes unheard.  The mods hear it, but not always the members.  We get the PMs and emails from newbies who quit the forums early after feeling abused here.  We get these PMs and emails more often than you think.  Of course, they won't be posting in this thread.

So I ask you, what should we do about the loss of these members?  What should be more important to us -- the continued participation of a smart and often helpful long-term member, or the continued participation of possibly dozens of new members down the road that that long-term member might scare away?

Yes, I wish every new member who came here had a thicker skin.  I'd much rather we have less moderating here, trust me.  But I think our primary goal is to help the greatest number of people living with HIV, which means we have to tilt towards safety here, rather than a wild free-for-all.

Are the mods the only ones concerned about the frequent loss of new members?

As for even longer TOs instead of permanent bans, please realize that we have banned very, very few long-term members.  With each one, it was only after begging that person for months and/or years to modify their behaviour.  With each one, we came to the conclusion that it was like asking them to change their very nature -- it wasn't going to happen, no matter how long the TOs.  
« Last Edit: September 13, 2008, 10:13:38 AM by Peter Staley »

Offline Jeff G

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #16 on: September 13, 2008, 10:53:55 AM »
This forum has been a blessing to me in many ways . When I first arrived here I was in a vulnerable state of mind . After reading a few threads I almost gave it up due to some of the things I read .

Some days I hesitate to post on some topics , not because I have thin skin but because of the tone of the discussion .     

Offline atlq

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #17 on: September 13, 2008, 10:59:50 AM »
So I ask you, what should we do about the loss of these members?  What should be more important to us -- the continued participation of a smart and often helpful long-term member, or the continued participation of possibly dozens of new members down the road that that long-term member might scare away? - Peter


There probably is no answer to that question that is going to satisfy every participant in these forums. I am relatively new here, yet as both an LTS and a person familiar with the atmosphere that naturally exists in forums such as these, perhaps I am not as sensitive as I should be to the reactions of those who are new, to both the virus and to nature of internet forums.

Speaking for myself, I came for advice and stayed because of the wit and wisdom of the individuals who post here. Certain of us are hand holders and others reveal their concern accompanied with a big dollop of sarcastic (and sometimes caustic) wit . Both, I think, are necessary.  

I understand the points the moderators have made on this issue....but it sucks all the same.

Just sayin'

 


  
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Offline keyite

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #18 on: September 13, 2008, 11:02:16 AM »
If those 'voices' can't express themselves in a civil way, even after countless warnings and TOs, then no, I won't be missing them. There is a way to disagree and get your point fully across without stepping across that line - it's not all that hard either.

Expecting those that are newly diagnosed or otherwise in crisis to grow a thicker skin just so that minority of 'voices' can be accommodated is plainly wishful thinking.

Offline Andy Velez

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #19 on: September 13, 2008, 11:05:43 AM »
Dear All,

I just want to say a few words in relation to Peter's comments. We discuss, consider and even agonize sometimes about whether to ban someone and whether it can in good conscience and responsibility to others be avoided. I'm not talking about when it's an obvious call because of denialism or some wildly out-of-control behavior, which has occured on occasion.

No, I'm talking about members who we really know and yes, care about. Because those who come here and allow themselves to become known are real people to us. We think about them. We worry about them sometimes when they're having problems, health or otherwise. We're happy when they get a good health report or something else good happens.

A decision to ban someone who's troublesome has never been taken lightly. Nor will it ever be.  

Andy Velez

Offline atlq

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #20 on: September 13, 2008, 11:17:36 AM »
If those 'voices' can't express themselves in a civil way, even after countless warnings and TOs, then no, I won't be missing them. There is a way to disagree and get your point fully across without stepping across that line - it's not all that hard either.

Expecting those that are newly diagnosed or otherwise in crisis to grow a thicker skin just so that minority of 'voices' can be accommodated is plainly wishful thinking.


Except that this voice was overwhelmingly civil and helpful to many people who were newly diagnosed or in crisis.

The proof of that is available for all to see.

Again, I say this not to berate those who had to make a painful decision. But, with all respect, this situation is not as black and white as your comments make it out to be.

“Keep up the good work....   And God bless you.”
  --  Sarah Palin, to members of the Alaskan Independence Party, 2008

Offline komnaes

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #21 on: September 13, 2008, 11:29:52 AM »
Expecting those that are newly diagnosed or otherwise in crisis to grow a thicker skin just so that minority of 'voices' can be accommodated is plainly wishful thinking.

Again, I have yet to see any such "caustic" remarks being made against anyone in real crisis. Just give us an example and we will muse over it.

And I really don't see thick/thin skin has anything to do it - some people are just more inclined to see hurtfulness when none exists.

I have a lot of respects for the mods here but I really hope that they have taken into consideration that some of those complaints might have been made with menace.
Aug 07 Diagnosed
Oct 07 CD4=446(19%) Feb 08 CD4=421(19%)
Jun 08 CD4=325(22%) Jul 08 CD4=301(18%)
Sep 08 CD4=257/VL=75,000 Oct 08 CD4=347(16%)
Dec 08 CD4=270(16%)
Jan 09 CD4=246(13%)/VL=10,000
Feb 09 CD4=233(15%)/VL=13,000
Started meds Sustiva/Epzicom
May 09 CD4=333(24%)/VL=650
Aug 09 CD4=346(24%)/VL=UD
Nov 09 CD4=437(26%)/VL=UD
Feb 10 CD4=471(31%)/VL=UD
June 10 CD4=517 (28%)/VL=UD
Sept 10 CD4=687 (31%)/VL=UD
Jan 11 CD4=557 (30%)/VL=UD
April 11 CD4=569 (32%)/VL=UD
Switched to Epizcom, Reyataz and Norvir
(Interrupted for 2 months with only Epizcom & Reyataz)
July 11 CD=520 (28%)/VL=UD
Oct 11 CD=771 (31%)/VL=UD(<30)
April 12 CD=609 (28%)/VL=UD(<20)
Aug 12 CD=657 (29%)/VL=UD(<20)
Dec 12 CD=532 (31%)/VL=UD(<20)
May 13 CD=567 (31%)/VL=UD(<20)
Jan 14 CD=521 (21%)/VL=UD(<50)

Offline keyite

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #22 on: September 13, 2008, 11:51:46 AM »
The subject was the timeout and banning policy and I was referring to that, rather than any one individual. For the policy to make any sense I think it must be applied without too much favour or prejudice (as it happens it probably gets applied with quite a liberal amount of discretion and I have no problem with that).

Offline jkinatl2

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #23 on: September 13, 2008, 11:55:35 AM »
Did we not instigate an "ignore" feature for those with problems with specific members?

The baby seal comment hit me the wrongest possible way. It's terribly condescending. I have, on several occasions, been told to grow a thicker skin on these forums. And I believe I have.

But what I have seen since I came back has been a truly mixed bag.

Why do you think I turn to a select few people, or the LESSONS section for scientific or treatment information?

Because the forums in this site seem to have sacrificed scientific accuracy in favor of what is loosely labeled "support." We state with scientific certainty one thing in one forum, then hedge or ignore discrepancies in another. We  allow dangerous drug (or drugless) therapies to go unchallenged, or with only a token caution.

Frankly, I'd rather see a TO for someone who advocates dangerous or frivolous medical treatment than for someone who is acerbic or sarcastic.

And as for people who are run off, how in the world can we argue against a negative which cannot be proven? At any given time, dozens, sometimes hundreds of guests are viewing these forums.  Peter and Jan are two powerful voices when it comes to standing up for science (especially in the Research and Treatment threads). Andy and Ann do the same int he AM I INFECTED forum. But what about other members?  What about those of us who have learned the hardest possible way what works and what doesn't? Where are we?

Afraid, mostly. Because sticking ones neck out tends to get it struck.

We created a new forum, the "I Just Tested Poz" forum, specifically for the "baby seals" mentioned in the past. And I totally support that. No one who just found out s/he i positive needs to face all their demons and prejudices and denial all at once. It's really a careful, tenuous journey, that first year after diagnosis. Everything changes, everything is examined. And every doctor's visit, every lab result. And yes, every pimple and rash is cause for fear and concern.

And should be given the latitude and compassion it deserves.

I thought "Living With" was for those who had more or less "settled in" to their diagnosis, and could be more receptive to the harder facts, from transmission to symptoms to what the internet can and cannot do in terms of diagnosis and enabling. It was supposed to be (I thought) a place for people to "mature" into their lives with HIV, which, as Andy points out, is not going anywhere anytime soon.

sometimes part of that is being delivered the scientific facts without sugarcoating. And if it comes to a choice between numbers of vulnerable new members and maintaining the scientific integrity of the site, well, that's a choice made by those not participating in this discussion, I suspect. And if allowed to continue, it will create a dichotomy between the LESSONS section and the forums which will be more and more difficult to traverse.

I do not want to see this site go the way of another site. I do not want the members with the least to contribute dictate the policies so that those with the most to contribute migrate elsewhere (or are banned). Because those strong voices are NEEDED.

i wonder how long Larry Kramer would last in such an environment.

And I get it, I really do. You want to make this a safe place. But sadly, the world is not a safe place. HIV is not a safe disease. It is relentless, unyielding, and it cannot be stopped with hugs or sweet words.

It is dirty, and for many, shameful, and stigma-ridden, and painful. Many if not most of the people who post here have issues unrelated to HIV that either directly or indirectly facilitated their infection, and certainly exacerbate it.

From substance abuse to chemical imbalances to socioeconomic issues and cultural differences. Peter mentioned that those whose native language is not English are often at a distinct disadvantage, and there are as any people here with IQ under 100 as there are with IQ over 130. It is as diverse a community as any (with the possible exception of heterosexual males).  There is simply NO WAY to make everyone feel happy or safe.

So who do we cater to? Do we sacrifice the wise and experienced (who happen to be jerks sometimes) for sweet and well meaning people who have nothing substantive to offer? Do we offer a "safe" place in exchange for a legitimate one? Should we HAVE to? Wasn't the divvying up of the forums an attempt to allow each vastly different group an option that was most comfortable for them?

I honestly do not have any answers. All I see are some of the brightest lights in this site going out, one by one. And I see no new lights rising to replace them. And that saddens me.

I was a baby seal once. And I got the mess smacked out of me on several occasions. And it was exactly what I needed. This is not a disease that lets the baby seals live. It's a chronic, and if ignored, terminal illness. The meds remain toxic, the government remains largely apathetic. The population as a whole remains ignorant.

As I see it, it's still an "All Hands On Deck" situation. Throwing people overboard, who have done such good works, is a luxury I do not feel we can afford.

And for those who are glad Matty is gone: does that mean you will be taking up the slack in the AM I INFECTED forum? Does that mean you will be the one advocating for scientific accuracy and first-tiered peer reviewed proof in the Research forums? Does this mean you will be picking up where he left off in the fields of rick assessment, treatment options, or first-hand experiential assistance?

Because if not, this place will become the worst possible thing; banal. A place with an EXCELLENT LESSONS section that no one seems to actually read, with long term survivors who go largely dismissed as irrelevant, whose members consist of frightened people clutching at one another for support, with no one to help lead the way.

if quantity means more than quality, then this is the desired outcome, i suppose. I just think that the effort put into this site by the founders and moderators deserves more respect than that.

Sorry about the length of this post. I am just healthy enough to be cranky, and in just enough pain to be alert. Bad combination.

"Many people, especially in the gay community, turn to oral sex as a safer alternative in the age of AIDS. And with HIV rates rising, people need to remember that oral sex is safer sex. It's a reasonable alternative."

-Kimberly Page-Shafer, PhD, MPH

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Online BT65

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #24 on: September 13, 2008, 11:58:50 AM »
What I feel that I've encountered lately are newbies with almost "Aids-envy," who talk about all these certain medical, what they think are catastrophes, and want to think they're one foot in the grave.  Then, when they get advice, they act offended, like someone should justify their ramblings on and hand them a mental pacifier, so to speak.  

I feel that sometimes things are seen as one-sided, in favor of newer people who post.  It's like the advancement of membership takes priority over spot-on advice sometimes.  I don't know if I'm accurate, or even if I'm making sense.  It's just my opinion.

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Offline AlanBama

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #25 on: September 13, 2008, 12:02:36 PM »
I understand the moderators position, really I do.   But it just sucks, plain and simple.

I guess there is no way a long time member could be allowed to post in just one forum, like "Long Term Survivors"?  Newbies don't have any business posting there anyway, IMHO, although they continue to do so (and be permitted to).   I think most of us there have a thick enough skin to deal with the forum members in question.

I think Mouse summed up my feelings very well:

Not to be an asshole, but there are a lot of people here that need to grow a pair and stop freaking the fuck out every time someone says something MEAN to them. Christ. It's unreal. I can't believe it's actually taken seriously as something that's bannable. I know we were all taught that 'if you don't have something nice to say don't say anything at all' shit in school, but honestly, just because someone says something snotty to someone doesn't mean the entire forum is going to erupt into a volcano of shit.


Alan  :'(
« Last Edit: September 13, 2008, 12:05:10 PM by AlanBama »
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Offline Ann

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #26 on: September 13, 2008, 12:08:58 PM »
Again, I have yet to see any such "caustic" remarks being made against anyone in real crisis. Just give us an example and we will muse over it.

Caustic remarks don't necessarily have to be said directly to the person in crisis to make them wary of posting for fear of eventually being treated the same way. 

I have a lot of respects for the mods here but I really hope that they have taken into consideration that some of those complaints might have been made with menace.

We do take these things into consideration. However, when the person making the complaint is very new to the site, well, they're unlikely to have any sort of axe to grind.

Banning people is the one aspect of this job that I really hate. I think the other mods will agree with me on that. It sucks.

Ann
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Offline komnaes

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #27 on: September 13, 2008, 12:21:46 PM »
Quote
We do take these things into consideration. However, when the person making the complaint is very new to the site, well, they're unlikely to have any sort of axe to grind.

As I can only speculate so I won't say another word on this.

But as a stakeholder (I think I am) I can only continue to respectfully disagree.

This is a major lost to AM and I am saddened by it.
Aug 07 Diagnosed
Oct 07 CD4=446(19%) Feb 08 CD4=421(19%)
Jun 08 CD4=325(22%) Jul 08 CD4=301(18%)
Sep 08 CD4=257/VL=75,000 Oct 08 CD4=347(16%)
Dec 08 CD4=270(16%)
Jan 09 CD4=246(13%)/VL=10,000
Feb 09 CD4=233(15%)/VL=13,000
Started meds Sustiva/Epzicom
May 09 CD4=333(24%)/VL=650
Aug 09 CD4=346(24%)/VL=UD
Nov 09 CD4=437(26%)/VL=UD
Feb 10 CD4=471(31%)/VL=UD
June 10 CD4=517 (28%)/VL=UD
Sept 10 CD4=687 (31%)/VL=UD
Jan 11 CD4=557 (30%)/VL=UD
April 11 CD4=569 (32%)/VL=UD
Switched to Epizcom, Reyataz and Norvir
(Interrupted for 2 months with only Epizcom & Reyataz)
July 11 CD=520 (28%)/VL=UD
Oct 11 CD=771 (31%)/VL=UD(<30)
April 12 CD=609 (28%)/VL=UD(<20)
Aug 12 CD=657 (29%)/VL=UD(<20)
Dec 12 CD=532 (31%)/VL=UD(<20)
May 13 CD=567 (31%)/VL=UD(<20)
Jan 14 CD=521 (21%)/VL=UD(<50)

Offline atlq

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #28 on: September 13, 2008, 12:27:53 PM »
The subject was the timeout and banning policy and I was referring to that, rather than any one individual. For the policy to make any sense I think it must be applied without too much favour or prejudice (as it happens it probably gets applied with quite a liberal amount of discretion and I have no problem with that).

Keyite,

I apologize if I misinterpreted your comment...
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Offline Peter Staley

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #29 on: September 13, 2008, 12:29:08 PM »
I implore folks not to turn this thread into a venting about one specific ban, or we'll have to lock the thread.  Let's keep it about our banning policy in general, and how these forums are moderated.

Thanks,

Peter

Offline Miss Philicia

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #30 on: September 13, 2008, 12:41:12 PM »
Except that this voice was overwhelmingly civil and helpful to many people who were newly diagnosed or in crisis.

The proof of that is available for all to see.

I trust all of the Ban Warriors in this thread plan on taking up the slack of The Banned One in Am I Infected, because frankly I don't have the patience.  I kind of doubt that will be happening though.

And yeah, that's an important point.
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Offline Miss Philicia

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #31 on: September 13, 2008, 12:43:39 PM »
The subject was the timeout and banning policy and I was referring to that, rather than any one individual. For the policy to make any sense I think it must be applied without too much favour or prejudice (as it happens it probably gets applied with quite a liberal amount of discretion and I have no problem with that).

Yet the subject of the thread is that very policy, specifically the "perma" ban aspect -- the question basically is that instead of a "perma" ban that there be something still very strict, but still not permanent -- say 6 months.

Can't we keep this thread discussing this proposal by the OP?
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Offline Miss Philicia

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #32 on: September 13, 2008, 12:45:09 PM »

Frankly, I'd rather see a TO for someone who advocates dangerous or frivolous medical treatment than for someone who is acerbic or sarcastic.

Indeed.
"I’ve slept with enough men to know that I’m not gay"

Offline JeffInNYC

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #33 on: September 13, 2008, 12:56:54 PM »
I trust all of the Ban Warriors in this thread plan on taking up the slack of The Banned One in Am I Infected, because frankly I don't have the patience.  I kind of doubt that will be happening though.

And yeah, that's an important point.

Philly you bring up a great point.
When I came to the fears forum a couple of years ago, the banned one spent a considerable amount of time talking me off a ledge and reassuring me that everything was ok.  He pointed out to me that HIV was just a smokescreen I was using to avoid dealing with the true issues.  Not many people have that kind of patience and I am truly grateful that I was able to get that kind of support.

Offline Peter Staley

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #34 on: September 13, 2008, 12:58:53 PM »
Frankly, I'd rather see a TO for someone who advocates dangerous or frivolous medical treatment than for someone who is acerbic or sarcastic.

We have banned members that had become aggressive advocates for unproven treatments, of any kind.  If we started banning every member that mentions their use of alternative treatments, we'd empty this place out pretty quickly.  I'd rather they stay, and slowly learn from the rest of us that they're wasting their money.

Frankly, Jonathan, this criticism hurts.  I know we can do better at correcting misleading treatment info, and we're trying (we just added David Evans to the Research forum this week for that very reason).  But I challenge you to name another HIV-related forum on the web that does a better job of keeping the science discussion on an even keel.  I don't know of another forum that comes anywhere close to our efforts here in that regard.

Offline keyite

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #35 on: September 13, 2008, 01:12:36 PM »
Yet the subject of the thread is that very policy, specifically the "perma" ban aspect -- the question basically is that instead of a "perma" ban that there be something still very strict, but still not permanent -- say 6 months.

Can't we keep this thread discussing this proposal by the OP?

Very true. But if seven days and 30 days didn't make a difference then why would six months?

Offline penguin

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #36 on: September 13, 2008, 01:20:11 PM »
aids has never shown much respect for my comfort levels.

aids don't have an ignore option. or a report to moderator option. or a ban option.

ditto life, real world etc

i deal with it, regardless, as best i can.

kate (sad penguin)

« Last Edit: September 13, 2008, 01:29:02 PM by penguin »

Offline komnaes

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #37 on: September 13, 2008, 01:31:58 PM »
Very true. But if seven days and 30 days didn't make a difference then why would six months?

The "But" should be if the ban shouldn't be applied in the first place.

Quote
I implore folks not to turn this thread into a venting about one specific ban, or we'll have to lock the thread.  Let's keep it about our banning policy in general, and how these forums are moderated.

I hope this get out before the thread is locked.

I understand the rule of not discussing any specific discussion to ban, but it's really kind of non-senscial to not do so because we're discussing how the perma-ban policy should be applied in a not of clear-cut situation. Let's not avoid it, we're not talking about some or a series of disorderly behaviors that are obviously out of line and distructive, the ban is being applied on a member that has made a lot of contribution (though it doesn't mean he should be treated differently or given more allowances).

This is one of those big "cases" that could change the course of where we're all going. Do we now have to censor the way we speak/write, meaning do only certain styles are allowed despite the substances and intention of the advises given?
Aug 07 Diagnosed
Oct 07 CD4=446(19%) Feb 08 CD4=421(19%)
Jun 08 CD4=325(22%) Jul 08 CD4=301(18%)
Sep 08 CD4=257/VL=75,000 Oct 08 CD4=347(16%)
Dec 08 CD4=270(16%)
Jan 09 CD4=246(13%)/VL=10,000
Feb 09 CD4=233(15%)/VL=13,000
Started meds Sustiva/Epzicom
May 09 CD4=333(24%)/VL=650
Aug 09 CD4=346(24%)/VL=UD
Nov 09 CD4=437(26%)/VL=UD
Feb 10 CD4=471(31%)/VL=UD
June 10 CD4=517 (28%)/VL=UD
Sept 10 CD4=687 (31%)/VL=UD
Jan 11 CD4=557 (30%)/VL=UD
April 11 CD4=569 (32%)/VL=UD
Switched to Epizcom, Reyataz and Norvir
(Interrupted for 2 months with only Epizcom & Reyataz)
July 11 CD=520 (28%)/VL=UD
Oct 11 CD=771 (31%)/VL=UD(<30)
April 12 CD=609 (28%)/VL=UD(<20)
Aug 12 CD=657 (29%)/VL=UD(<20)
Dec 12 CD=532 (31%)/VL=UD(<20)
May 13 CD=567 (31%)/VL=UD(<20)
Jan 14 CD=521 (21%)/VL=UD(<50)

Offline emeraldize

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #38 on: September 13, 2008, 01:35:01 PM »
JK:The baby seal comment hit me the wrongest possible way. It's terribly condescending.
Condescending toward seals? The comment was born of the condescension observed in the way new members and other members were treated over a long period of time. To choose a defenseless animal that's known via the media because of being cold-cocked seemed a fitting equivalent to compare a new person, newly infected or otherwise, visiting this site for the first month or so who's handled with condescension and sarcasm.

JK:I thought "Living With" was for those who had more or less "settled in" to their diagnosis.
Is there such a distinction? Aren't we living with from the moment our diagnosis is made and/or confirmed?

JK:And as for people who are run off, how in the world can we argue against a negative which cannot be proven?
That the moderators have all attested as to having pondered their decision and cited the complaints of new members (and some of them now former members) is sufficient proof to me that a negative was recognized.

JK:There is simply NO WAY to make everyone feel happy or safe.
I agree with you. I view the mods as striving for balance and sticking with their goal to provide good information.

JK:Because sticking ones neck out tends to get it struck.
Totally agree with you.

JK: Do we sacrifice the wise and experienced (who happen to be jerks sometimes) for sweet and well meaning people who have nothing substantive to offer?
Here, not surprising, is where I disagree with you. How is it that you decide a sweet, well meaning person has nothing substantive to offer? Because the person has nothing to offer you specifically? That's not forum-building form. What if their post resonates with someone else--and that person finds it substantive. Because you say it isn't, it isn't? You have the Ignore button for what you don't like, right? We've all read posts we've rolled our eyes over, but in most cases what you would deem as lacking in substance was likely written by a person who thought of themselves as sweet and well meaning. If such thick epidermis exists then why would the non-substantive posts of the sweet and well meaning even matter one shreddy bit?

And, for those who are glad Matty is gone
I would find it hard to believe anyone is "glad" over Matty's ban. It's the loss of a member, of humor, of insight, of opinion, and more. He's bright, he knew what he was doing. It was always his choice to post as he did knowing the potential consequences.

PS:But I think our primary goal is to help the greatest number of people living with HIV, which means we have to tilt towards safety here, rather than a wild free-for-all.
Tilting will put a decidedly different tone to things, but the important words in Peter's comment are "to help" and while some people want input without coating, and are willing to be coached to grow thicker skin, others want theirs with coating and may be comfy with the skin they have.





Offline Miss Philicia

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #39 on: September 13, 2008, 01:44:34 PM »
Very true. But if seven days and 30 days didn't make a difference then why would six months?

Much longer period for self-reflection, etc. and gives all other members a long breathing period.  I suppose if the person still engages in questionable behavior when they return they'd get another 6 month time out, etc.  Basically the person would never be here if they got to that point, or barely here.

I'm trying to take the approach of how this might be handled in a real life support group.  Asking a member to take 6 months off might allow them to discuss the issue with a one-one-one counselor, etc.

And keyite, if we go by your logic then I guess we shouldn't have a 30 day timeout either (?)

The only time a permanent ban makes sense to me is for a person trolling, using a sock puppet technique, and/or trying to circumvent disciplinary action (like a T.O.) by registering a new user name via a proxy server.
"I’ve slept with enough men to know that I’m not gay"

Offline Miss Philicia

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #40 on: September 13, 2008, 01:47:12 PM »
Also, has anyone here that had particular issues with The Banned One actually stated that they employed the "ignore" feature or not?  I don't see why that's so difficult to do.  It's a common feature on ANY web forum, because this issue is not particular to AIDSmeds but would seem to be if the user here has never participated in any other internet forums, which I often assume is the case for probably half of the people here.
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Offline Tim Horn

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #41 on: September 13, 2008, 02:03:49 PM »
aids has never shown much respect for my comfort levels.

aids don't have an ignore option. or a report to moderator option. or a ban option.

ditto life, real world etc

And is it so wrong to maintain a space where people living with HIV do have the safety and support to move forward -- or backward -- at their own pace? Yes, living with HIV is a real bitch -- everything from the stigma to ever-dwindling time with our health care providers to ask questions, get answers and discuss options. The whole idea of the Forums is to provide as many people as possible with a respite from the lack of respect, time, information and support we get in the "real world." If the intent of these Forums is to mimic the cold, hard reality of HIV we all face in the real world, I'd rather shut them down completely.

Fact of the matter is, there are constructive ways to be witty... or acerbic... or sarcastic. I like to think that we see this in the Forums all the time. We're certainly not looking to strip the Forums of this, nor do we aspire to host a 24-hour "tasteful gay brunch," where everyone needs to keep it "light and breezy." Debate and tough love is welcome, all we ask is that people keep it respectful and understand that not everyone comes to the table with the same mindset or level of strength that many others have (of have, indeed, found in these Forums over time).

Many individuals who have been the subject of moderator reports have been extremely receptive to our suggestions of constructive dialogue, all the while keeping their incredibly bright, colorful and insightful voices intact -- a few, however, have not... and when we continue to receive dozens and dozens of moderator reports, over months and years, from both Forums newbies and veterans who no longer feel comfortable posting, we simply have no choice but to take act, as Ann says, for the greater good.

That said, every member of these Forums is a stakeholder and we (the moderators and administrators) are certainly not above having a discussion about the salient points that have been raised in this thread -- or even changing our policies. The one way these Forums ARE very much like HIV is that this whole process is one of trial and error and that change, when proven necessary, is definitely an option.

Tim Horn  
« Last Edit: September 13, 2008, 02:11:56 PM by Tim Horn »

Offline David_CA

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #42 on: September 13, 2008, 02:14:46 PM »
Very true. But if seven days and 30 days didn't make a difference then why would six months?

Because six months may give that member a chance to get their shit together, so to speak.  The loss of the forums for six months may be just the wake-up call they need.  There is a current member that messed up his dosing on antidepressants, and what he posted was so out of character that many of us recognized it as such.  Some of those who have been banned (not just the most recent ones) weren't always so contrary; it seemed to depend on what sort of legitimate crisis they were dealing with.

It's a balancing act, moderating these forums.  The closer we can get to the fulcrum (center point) the easier it will be to balance.  I'm hoping that along with 6 month 'temporary bans' and something like three strikes in a one year period instead of in total will bring us to that.

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
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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%
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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%
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Offline bocker3

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #43 on: September 13, 2008, 02:36:39 PM »
The thing that I see missing in the discussion is personal responsibility.  This idea comes up in many threads here -- i.e. everyone is responsible for their own safety, etc.  Whether you agree or disagree with the current TOS -- they are what they are.  Every member that I've seen banned since I joined has been given chances to change and abide by them -- both public and private.  The fact that they have not is why they have been banned.

Now, an open discussion of whether bans should exist is a great idea (I actually like the 6 mos TO as at least an addition, if not a replacement to bans) -- but everyone who has been banned to date has been given a choice and they have all chosen their own paths.  Does it make me sad? Have I missed some?  Yes to both -- but again, they have chosen their path with full knowledge.

Mike
Atripla - Started 12/05
Reyataz/Norvir - Added 6/06
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Offline BlueMoon

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #44 on: September 13, 2008, 02:50:49 PM »
As I understand it, AIDSMeds is a business for profit.  As such it seeks to maintain a large and active forum membership in order to help maximize its paying customer base, the pharmaceutical companies that advertise here.

From that standpoint it seems to me that a more flexible ban policy would make good business sense.  The moderators might be less reluctant to drop the hammer if there was less finality to the act.  That would make it easier to curtail the abusive posting.

Although my forum stalker would disagree, I do consider myself to be compassionate (to a degree  ;) ) and hate to see anyone cut off from the support available here, even the curmudgeons.  After all, isn't that the American dream, another chance at redemption?          
...................VL.....CD4.....%
-----------------------------------------
08/10-- ......<40.....290.....42
05/10-- ......<48.....290.....46
02/10-- ......<48.....481.....44
10/09-- ......<48.....277.....46
07/09-- ......<48.....300.....38
05/09-- ........51.....449.....39
03/09-- Added Isentress
02/09-- ........65.....299.....34
11/08-- ........62.....242.....40
08/08-- ........66.....212.....29
05/08-- ......202.....217.....27
03/08-- ....5210.....187.....21
02/08-- Began Truvada/Reyataz/Norvir
12/07-- 273,000.....157.....22
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Offline keyite

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #45 on: September 13, 2008, 02:53:23 PM »
Philly, David_NC - I take those points and can now see some merit to a lengthy TO - but I think if it's to work then there has to be zero tolerance after the six months, i.e. further transgressions result in another lengthy TO without further warnings.

Offline Miss Philicia

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #46 on: September 13, 2008, 03:03:21 PM »
The thing that I see missing in the discussion is personal responsibility.  This idea comes up in many threads here -- i.e. everyone is responsible for their own safety, etc.  Whether you agree or disagree with the current TOS -- they are what they are.  Every member that I've seen banned since I joined has been given chances to change and abide by them -- both public and private.  The fact that they have not is why they have been banned.

Now, an open discussion of whether bans should exist is a great idea (I actually like the 6 mos TO as at least an addition, if not a replacement to bans) -- but everyone who has been banned to date has been given a choice and they have all chosen their own paths.  Does it make me sad? Have I missed some?  Yes to both -- but again, they have chosen their path with full knowledge.

Mike

When studies show that something like 60% of HIV patients have mental health issues, I tend to err on the side of compassion.  Your argument would hold more water in a world absent of something like HIV though.  I'm trying to seek a middle ground with my stance on a 6-month option for the moderators.
"I’ve slept with enough men to know that I’m not gay"

Offline allopathicholistic

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #47 on: September 13, 2008, 03:14:11 PM »
Philly, David_NC - I take those points and can now see some merit to a lengthy TO - but I think if it's to work then there has to be zero tolerance after the six months, i.e. further transgressions result in another lengthy TO without further warnings.

Interesting! Successive and unlimited 6 month timeouts would spare the Moderators from "heavy heart syndrome" from trying to decide whether to perma-ban someone because a perma-ban would be reserved for sock-puppets, med-haters, money-solicitors, snake oil salesmen, unapologetic nasty people, aids denialists, and so on and so forth.

And the person getting the 6 month timeout would never feel dark & sad perma-ban feelings of "shit, they don't want me. they don't appreciate me. they don't like me. they see no redeeming qualities in me."

And it would spare the Moderators from having to type out warnings. Just push a button and voila. The Moderators would then have the option to email the person and elaborate. In this specific equation, warnings would defeat the purpose so yeah, no warnings in this specific proposition.

And if people wonder "Hey, where's so-and-so person? Are they perma-banned?" The Mods can just answer "Just be patient. He/she will be back in 6 months. Hopefully for longer than 10 minutes. We don't really perma-ban anymore, remember?"

 
« Last Edit: September 13, 2008, 05:13:35 PM by allopathicholistic »

Offline bocker3

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #48 on: September 13, 2008, 03:15:45 PM »
When studies show that something like 60% of HIV patients have mental health issues, I tend to err on the side of compassion.  Your argument would hold more water in a world absent of something like HIV though.  I'm trying to seek a middle ground with my stance on a 6-month option for the moderators.

And I did agree with you on the middle ground -- I was simply pointing out that "personal responsibility" is thrown around alot in these rooms, and, I think, has some applicability here too.  

Mike
Atripla - Started 12/05
Reyataz/Norvir - Added 6/06
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Offline Miss Philicia

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #49 on: September 13, 2008, 03:19:29 PM »
And I did agree with you on the middle ground -- I was simply pointing out that "personal responsibility" is thrown around alot in these rooms, and, I think, has some applicability here too.  

Mike

I'm not big on the "personal responsibility" line because it always lacks context, which is why it's a shibboleth for right wingers.  If I were to really walk the walk with that mantra, then my HIV infection is my own fault and thus I have no right to any HIV meds via ADAP, nor does anyone else (excepting those infected by rape and/or blood transfusions) etc.

Hence why I tried to show how a mitigating factor is useful in this discussion.
"I’ve slept with enough men to know that I’m not gay"

Offline Finnboy

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #50 on: September 13, 2008, 03:25:02 PM »
I haven't been here long enough to know the personalities, form opinions or understand the politics; but I can't help wondering about this six month ban proposal. One thing I have learnt about the internet is that use is largely based on habit. Break a habit a new habits are formed. Unless they are specifically invited back, I very much doubt that any person who had been banned for six months would even think about returning: they would almost certainly have moved on and formed new internet habits.

Offline bocker3

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #51 on: September 13, 2008, 03:27:06 PM »
I'm not big on the "personal responsibility" line because it always lacks context, which is why it's a shibboleth for right wingers.  If I were to really walk the walk with that mantra, then my HIV infection is my own fault and thus I have no right to any HIV meds via ADAP, nor does anyone else (excepting those infected by rape and/or blood transfusions) etc.

Hence why I tried to show how a mitigating factor is useful in this discussion.

I understand you -- and agree, to a point.  The fact remains that those banned had a choice to modify their behavior to avoid it.  Everyone knew the rules -- which probably should be amended, but have not been as yet.  maybe they had mitigating issues, but we don't have the luxury of trials and evidence etc (I don't mean that to sound flip -- really I don't) what we do have is the judgement of the moderators -- who have far more "evidence" than we all do.  I know that I would not want their jobs.

Mike
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Offline jkinatl2

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #52 on: September 13, 2008, 03:40:48 PM »
First off, I am a total chimp when it comes to the features on this site. But here goes an effort:

Mike, you said:
Quote
but again, they have chosen their path with full knowledge.

Do they always? What about people with chronic, screaming pain? What about people whose minds have been altered by drugs like Sustiva or any of a number of drugs used for HIV and related illnesses. Not to mention people who come here with bipolar and other depressive/manic/psychotic disorders. Often untreated. Often undiagnosed, even. we won't even go into the assortment of substance abuse situations that, given time, might actually iron themselves out. Or burn themselves out, whatever

And some people still develop HIV related dementia. Not a lot. But some.

And some people, diagnosed with One More Thing they can't handle, lash out. I am all for personal responsibility. I really, seriously am. But I am also for compassion. And that sometimes makes me a total hypocrite. I can live with that label. Would rather have double standards for those I love than be so utterly rigid as to shut out people who might, just might, be redirected into better things.

David NC wrote:

Quote
Because six months may give that member a chance to get their shit together, so to speak.  The loss of the forums for six months may be just the wake-up call they need.  There is a current member that messed up his dosing on antidepressants, and what he posted was so out of character that many of us recognized it as such.  Some of those who have been banned (not just the most recent ones) weren't always so contrary; it seemed to depend on what sort of legitimate crisis they were dealing with.

Well spake, sir. Well spake indeed.

Emeraldize wrote:

Quote
The comment was born of the condescension observed in the way new members and other members were treated over a long period of time.

To the best of my understanding, there has not been harassment of any kind in the "Just tested Positive" Forum. No tough love, no correcting the mode of HIV transmission, just support. I was under the impression that the "Living with HIV" forum WAS a different place than the "Just Infected" forum, for precisely the reasons you state.

That it was and is a place where much franker discussions can take place. Even calling people out on their denial/delusions/what-have-you. because those delusions, denials, and the what-have-you's are a FAR greater threat to a person's survival with HIV than stress. Moreover, they often perpetuate stigmas we are so valiantly working to overcome.  Had incidents occur ed in the "I Just tested Poz" forum, trust me, I'd be in the same boat as you.

But if Living With is supposed to be the same "kid gloves" forum as "I Just Tested Positive," then why have different forums for the two? I agree, we are ALL, from diagnosis to death, living with HIV. I though that placing a gentler, kinder forum for those newly infected was specifically to allow a person time to adjust to their situation and the realities of HIV before moving to the harsher realms of what is surely a lifetime, chronic illness with no regard for sensibilities.

Quote
How is it that you decide a sweet, well meaning person has nothing substantive to offer?

I do not. And I did not. I was using examples of extremes to make a point. Please do not parse semantics like that.

Some of the most knowledgeable people here and anywhere are the sweetest, kindest people in the world. And some of the people with zero to offer of any substance are the loudest voices. This is why discipline (or punishment) should be decided on a case by case, member to member basis.

I totally understand the "ignore" feature, and having posts/posters to whom my eyes roll. I tend to avoid posting in those threads, because, well sometimes if you have nothing nice to say, it's better not to say anything at all. The same, of course, can apply to the acerbic and ill-thought-out posts of members. And yes, sometimes, some members will not be able to help themselves, and put something particularly mean or inappropriate in a thread I get that. And when that happens, at the very least, a warning should be given, in public and/or via PM. Banning someone for having a lousy day and lousy timing is not the answer. Banning someone who has seven lousy days in a year (or a lifetime of membership to AM) and lousy timing is also rather draconian.

We're not talking about X number of offenses over X amount of time. We are talking about X number of offenses EVER. And the better these drugs get, the longer us long-timers will be around. Frankly, I am a huge fan of a yearly clean slate. Something like a Holiday gift to the members.

Even the ones I don't like. Even the ones you don't.

because this illness is a LOT more complicated than many others. And it involves MANY factors which are often not taken into consideration when determining discipline.

Finally. to Peter:

I cannot access your quote, but I did not at all intend to hurt your feelings. I am very glad you found someone to help out in the Research thread. I can tell you had your hands totally full there for the longest time. It will, I suspect, take some time to restore it to it's original intent. Wild suppositions and near-denialism have to be dealt with on a case by case, often a member by member basis. And with so much information (and such a dearth of real scientific knowledge or willingness to follow through with claims or information gathering) it can seem, form the outside, overwhelming. It needed the extra help, and I am glad you got it.

You know I respect you and especially the LESSONS you and Tim Horn have laid out more than anything.  At my doctor's week before last, she actually took one of the pieces of advice I was given by you when I was really sick, and said (half to herself) "I was just about to suggest that." But she didn't. I did, because you did.

If I am to survive, I am going to need to pester the best and the brightest. I am also going to need to stay smart, and keep reading, and above all, not waffle on the important issues like meds, and health, and whether or not I deserve to live. If I learned anything from two weeks in the hospital (aside from the fact that the food is rank) it's that existentialism must give way to pragmatism at some point. Navel gazing is great... just make sure you still have a navel to gaze at.

But I digress.

And I miss many of the departed, and so does this forum, whether it knows/acknowledges it or not.

"Many people, especially in the gay community, turn to oral sex as a safer alternative in the age of AIDS. And with HIV rates rising, people need to remember that oral sex is safer sex. It's a reasonable alternative."

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Welcome Thread

Offline Texan38

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #53 on: September 13, 2008, 03:42:39 PM »
There are a lot of people here with strong opinions. Some people get along and some don't and then are those when you feel you need a drink in order to get along. There are going to be agreements and disagreements but there is always going to be respect and love...no matter what afterall, we all have one thing in common.  Sounds like a family to me.
I have to admit, I enjoyed Mattys twisted sense of humor. He has a wicked tongue but has a heart of gold.
No one should feel hesitant or reluctant about posting their opinions here.
Does this have anything to do with what everyone here is talking about? No. But that's the point. It's my opinion and voice it here.
The moderators are doing a great job!

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Offline jkinatl2

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #54 on: September 13, 2008, 03:45:07 PM »
I haven't been here long enough to know the personalities, form opinions or understand the politics; but I can't help wondering about this six month ban proposal. One thing I have learnt about the internet is that use is largely based on habit. Break a habit a new habits are formed. Unless they are specifically invited back, I very much doubt that any person who had been banned for six months would even think about returning: they would almost certainly have moved on and formed new internet habits.


I took almost a nine months off. and have come back. Maybe I am exceptional. Mom thinks so.

"Many people, especially in the gay community, turn to oral sex as a safer alternative in the age of AIDS. And with HIV rates rising, people need to remember that oral sex is safer sex. It's a reasonable alternative."

-Kimberly Page-Shafer, PhD, MPH

Welcome Thread

Offline Bucko

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #55 on: September 13, 2008, 04:19:39 PM »

I took almost a nine months off. and have come back. Maybe I am exceptional. Mom thinks so.



I've also taken months and months between visits. But I always know where to find AM.

Bucko... I miss you!!!

Give the damned one ALLLLLLL my love..

Will do, darl.

There are a lot of people here with strong opinions. Some people get along and some don't and then are those when you feel you need a drink in order to get along. There are going to be agreements and disagreements but there is always going to be respect and love...no matter what afterall, we all have one thing in common.  Sounds like a family to me.


"Family" is a dangerous meme, because it's highly misleading.

In my family, we don't mince words and we don't wear gloves. But we love each other unconditionally. This is not a family. It's a business, and all good businesspeople keep the bottom line first and foremost. To do otherwise is fatal to their investment and livelihood.

Don't anyone think otherwise.
Blessed with brains, talent and gorgeous tits.

The revolutionary smart set reads The Spin Cycle at least once every day.

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Offline Assurbanipal

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #56 on: September 13, 2008, 04:44:16 PM »
But one side of this goes unheard.  ... newbies who quit the forums early after feeling abused here.  

Are the mods the only ones concerned about the frequent loss of new members?

As for even longer TOs instead of permanent bans, please realize that we have banned very, very few long-term members.  With each one, it was only after begging that person for months and/or years to modify their behaviour.  With each one, we came to the conclusion that it was like asking them to change their very nature -- it wasn't going to happen, no matter how long the TOs.  

Peter

Before responding to your and other posts, there is something I wanted to say to you personally ... What you achieved in building AIDSMEDS and these forums has been enormously valuable to me and all of us so quick to offer our opinions.  As I read through the thread responses I realized that I should have, but did not, state that upfront in the first post -- please believe me that it was implicit if unstated.  Thank you from me and, I suspect, from all of us.

Back to the thread:

To respond to your question, I think this thread makes it clear that most of the long term members are concerned about the loss of new members.  The mods get the brunt of this in one on one situations, but many respondents to this thread have commented on the need to protect vulnerable members of the community.  And even as a relatively new member I've seen it currently and in the back threads and talked with disaffected new members on and off the site.  And I don't think my experience is unique.  

But I'm not sure banning established members is necessarily the only or best response to the needs of new members.  I think new members want to feel that they are protected against attack -- but that does not automatically imply that they wish those who attack them to be permanently banned -- they just want it not to happen.  And new members can also be put off by the discussions of timeouts and permanent bans.  Part of what people are looking for is community, and the idea of permanent bans on former major contributors in itself makes the community feel less welcoming.

Perhaps new members would be better protected by an absolute ban (with automatic timeouts) for sarcasm in mental health and just tested forums -- or perhaps there are other alternatives.

Several of the moderators have commented on how hard it is to ban a long time member -- but they have expressed no such problem with banning trolls etc.  Moderating discussions, particularly ones where you have an opinion as well, is hard work and I respect the work the moderators put in.  But sometimes, when implications of a policy feel particularly difficult to enforce that can be a sign that the policy is almost, but not quite, on target.  A penalty can be so severe that it is applied later than it should be -- many organizations have found that better compliance is attained with less stress on the managers of a policy by making penalties marginally less punitive and applying them with less judgment.  Perhaps some of the stress on the moderators could be alleviated by applying bans to the trolls and a different policy to members of the community.

Finally, having some distance (and the advantage of too much time to read back issues of the forums) I think that the number of banned members may feel like a larger percentage of the conversations to new members than might it might feel like when you are actually living through them:

As backup (and because numbers are easier for me than words) I offer the following: Total posts on the site are a little under 300,000 (293,163 at the time of typing).  If you sort the member list by posts the top 60 posters contributed about half of the material (146,000).  But some of the banned members do not show up on the sorted list so the weighting of the posts by frequent posters is probably even heavier.  Counting just 6 of the banned member posts generates over 13,000 posts.  Thus, in total, banned members are probably responsible for between 5% and 10% of the posts on the site -- which is to say between 1 in 10 and 1 in 20 messages.  That's a significant number and, in conjunction with those who leave for other reassons, a noticeable one.

Finally, I'd like to address the question of whether people change -- I think people do change and grow -- sometimes in a month, often in 6 months and very often in a year of two. And sometimes, as jkinatl points out so well, people go through times of crisis.

Well -- 10 people have posted while I was writing this so I will go back to reading.

But again, thanks for these forums and for the opportunity to offer suggestions.

Respectfully

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 Texan38

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #57 on: September 13, 2008, 05:15:02 PM »
Well, Bucko, that's in your family. Not everyone's family is like that but that's the beauty of this place, a difference of opinion. You see things one way, I see things another. The one thing I do agree with you on is:
But we love each other unconditionally.
In Hollywood an equitable divorce settlement means each party getting fifty per cent of publicity.
~ Lauren Bacall

Offline bocker3

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #58 on: September 13, 2008, 05:40:05 PM »
Do they always? What about people with chronic, screaming pain? What about people whose minds have been altered by drugs like Sustiva or any of a number of drugs used for HIV and related illnesses. Not to mention people who come here with bipolar and other depressive/manic/psychotic disorders. Often untreated. Often undiagnosed, even. we won't even go into the assortment of substance abuse situations that, given time, might actually iron themselves out. Or burn themselves out, whatever

And some people still develop HIV related dementia. Not a lot. But some.

And some people, diagnosed with One More Thing they can't handle, lash out. I am all for personal responsibility. I really, seriously am. But I am also for compassion. And that sometimes makes me a total hypocrite. I can live with that label. Would rather have double standards for those I love than be so utterly rigid as to shut out people who might, just might, be redirected into better things.

AND....  some people just choose to do as they please.  There are always possible mitigating circumstances, I agree -- but you can't build a set of rules and expectations of decorum to manage those.  What you CAN do (and I believe the moderators do....) is apply some discretion.  Someone has already pointed out one particular instance where it was clear to everyone that someone was simply not right -- if it's the one I am thinking of -- he was highly agitated and aggressive.  The forum members rallied around him and supported as best they could -- and he pulled through.  No TO, no ban.  Now, I know it isn't always that obvious, but again, compassion and discretion are usually applied to individuals, but at some point a decision has to be made based on the CURRENT rules.  And really, compassion and discretion can NOT go on forever -- as difficult as they may be to do and/or hear.  Sometimes the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the one (stolen from Mr. Spock -- I forget which Star Trek movie -- maybe the one with Ricardo Montabaln).

To be clear -- I am very much onboard with reviewing and revamping the permanent ban part of the TOS for reasons you and others have pointed out -- but until it's changed it is what it is.  If the moderators have bent over backwards to help someone avoid a ban, but it isn't working -- well rules are meaningless if they aren't enforced.  Just because it isn't "easy" for a moderator to enforce a rule, does not (as suggested) mean the rule is questionable -- it usually means that the moderator(s) care for the person and hate to do what must be done.  Ask any parent if it isn't "hard" to dole out punishment to their children at times.  I am a parent and I'll tell you - it sucks -- but sometimes it has to happen.

Now -- I would like to hear what the moderators think of the suggestion around limiting bannable offenses to denialists, dangerous medical advice, sock puppets, etc and a progressively longer TO for the "behavioral" (for lack of a better term) offenses.  Maybe add the 6 mos and then 12 mos TO -- perhaps then followed by a ban at that point (this would allow about 2 yrs for someone to address any issues that made "behaving" difficult).  At the end of the day -- whether changes are made or not -- we all know that everyone won't be happy. 

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 Bucko

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #59 on: September 13, 2008, 06:06:39 PM »
AND....  some people just choose to do as they please.  There are always possible mitigating circumstances, I agree -- but you can't build a set of rules and expectations of decorum to manage those.  What you CAN do (and I believe the moderators do....) is apply some discretion.  Someone has already pointed out one particular instance where it was clear to everyone that someone was simply not right -- if it's the one I am thinking of -- he was highly agitated and aggressive.  The forum members rallied around him and supported as best they could -- and he pulled through.  No TO, no ban.  Now, I know it isn't always that obvious, but again, compassion and discretion are usually applied to individuals, but at some point a decision has to be made based on the CURRENT rules.  And really, compassion and discretion can NOT go on forever -- as difficult as they may be to do and/or hear.  Sometimes the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the one (stolen from Mr. Spock -- I forget which Star Trek movie -- maybe the one with Ricardo Montabaln).

The irrefutable logic of your post is difficult for any reasonable entrepreneur to dispute.

Just, please, remember that any display of emotion from Mr Spock was lethally toxic. 
Blessed with brains, talent and gorgeous tits.

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Offline jkinatl2

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #60 on: September 13, 2008, 06:11:49 PM »
Quote
Sometimes the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the one (stolen from Mr. Spock -- I forget which Star Trek movie -- maybe the one with Ricardo Montabaln).

Which was Spock's rationale for his personal sacrifice. However, in Star Trek 2, Kirk and his shipmates stole the Enterprise, went strictly against orders to the newly formed Genesis Planet. They found the regenerated Spock in order to bring him to Vulcan to be reunited with his Katra, his soul, which resided in McCoy.

as was pointed out in the movie, that thinking, that the needs of the one, of Spock, meant more than the needs of the many, was illogical. But even Sarek, Spock's father, noted that "My logic is not always clear where my son is concerned."

Sometimes it is the needs of the many. Sometimes it is the needs of the one.


Gotta side with Kirk on this one.

Holy mother of pearl, I am a geek.
"Many people, especially in the gay community, turn to oral sex as a safer alternative in the age of AIDS. And with HIV rates rising, people need to remember that oral sex is safer sex. It's a reasonable alternative."

-Kimberly Page-Shafer, PhD, MPH

Welcome Thread

Offline DanielMark

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #61 on: September 13, 2008, 06:15:06 PM »
I just want to say thank you to the moderators for trying to clean up the joint. It will be nice to be able to come here a little more often now without having to see things that help no one and quite frankly are embarrassingly childish to see in a support forum for adults.

Keep up the good work!  ;D

Daniel
MEDS: REYATAZ & KIVEXA (SINCE AUG 2008)

MAY 2000 LAB RESULTS: CD4 678
VL STILL UNDETECTABLE

DIAGNOSED IN 1988

Offline bocker3

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #62 on: September 13, 2008, 06:23:04 PM »
Which was Spock's rationale for his personal sacrifice. However, in Star Trek 2, Kirk and his shipmates stole the Enterprise, went strictly against orders to the newly formed Genesis Planet. They found the regenerated Spock in order to bring him to Vulcan to be reunited with his Katra, his soul, which resided in McCoy.

as was pointed out in the movie, that thinking, that the needs of the one, of Spock, meant more than the needs of the many, was illogical. But even Sarek, Spock's father, noted that "My logic is not always clear where my son is concerned."

Sometimes it is the needs of the many. Sometimes it is the needs of the one.


Gotta side with Kirk on this one.

Holy mother of pearl, I am a geek.


Unfortunately -- by taking just one line without what preceeded it you missed my point. 

I said that compassion and discretion was good and necessary (and that I thought the mods have been displaying both), but it can't go on forever.  Eventually, no matter what is going on with the individual his or her issue(s) can't allow an indefinite impact on the rest of the individuals (and Bucko's point -- to the bottomline of the company -- because if the sponsor decides to pull the plug -- well, you get the picture.
So, I'm not trying to imply that the crowd always trumps the individual -- but eventually that decision needs to be looked at if there is no improvement.   It's an important distinction IMO.

BTW -- I've always liked Trek geeks -- I've even discovered that on cbs.com you can see some original episodes in High-definition!   ;D

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 Bucko

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #63 on: September 13, 2008, 06:50:51 PM »
Unfortunately -- by taking just one line without what preceeded it you missed my point. 

I said that compassion and discretion was good and necessary (and that I thought the mods have been displaying both), but it can't go on forever.  Eventually, no matter what is going on with the individual his or her issue(s) can't allow an indefinite impact on the rest of the individuals (and Bucko's point -- to the bottomline of the company -- because if the sponsor decides to pull the plug -- well, you get the picture.


I have repeated several times that I appreciate how, from a business perspective, this decision makes absolute sense. I really don't understand why you feel the need to qualify what you said. It's absolutely sound fiscal policy.

I just want to say thank you to the moderators for trying to clean up the joint. It will be nice to be able to come here a little more often now without having to see things that help no one and quite frankly are embarrassingly childish to see in a support forum for adults.

Keep up the good work!  ;D

Daniel

See? here's another satisfied customer right here.
Blessed with brains, talent and gorgeous tits.

The revolutionary smart set reads The Spin Cycle at least once every day.

Blathering on AIDSmeds since 2005, provocative from birth

Offline Tim Horn

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #64 on: September 13, 2008, 07:02:02 PM »
Now -- I would like to hear what the moderators think of the suggestion around limiting bannable offenses to denialists, dangerous medical advice, sock puppets, etc and a progressively longer TO for the "behavioral" (for lack of a better term) offenses.  Maybe add the 6 mos and then 12 mos TO -- perhaps then followed by a ban at that point (this would allow about 2 yrs for someone to address any issues that made "behaving" difficult).

As I said above, we'll likely be discussing this, as a group, once everything appears to have been said on the subject. All of the moderators have been following this thread very closely today -- trying very hard not to take any of it personally, might I add. Anyway, once we've talk this through, we'll most definitely chime in with our "official" thoughts on the matter.

Again, there are some salient points here and this discussion has been very useful, I believe, to everyone. I assure you that we're not ignoring what's being said here.

Tim Horn
« Last Edit: September 13, 2008, 07:04:00 PM by Tim Horn »

Offline Lis

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #65 on: September 13, 2008, 07:11:55 PM »
As I sit in my cow path of a town... trying to figure out how to swallow all the pills.. (no I NEVER could do 8 inches) Im left to think, what exactly is this site about.. I had an oppertunity to maybe meet a person like me only 2 hours away... that is HUGE for me... but now I feel like because Im old, Dieing and cranky that I should just shut up shuttin up!!!!  I would hope that folks would read what is written, and not read more into any given post then is really there.. 

thats on them.. not me

lis
poz 1986....

Offline Bucko

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #66 on: September 13, 2008, 07:34:17 PM »
Unfortunately -- by taking just one line without what preceeded it you missed my point. 

I said that compassion and discretion was good and necessary (and that I thought the mods have been displaying both), but it can't go on forever.  Eventually, no matter what is going on with the individual his or her issue(s) can't allow an indefinite impact on the rest of the individuals (and Bucko's point -- to the bottomline of the company -- because if the sponsor decides to pull the plug -- well, you get the picture.


You know, the longer I think about this the angrier I became.

We were promised by Peter Staley that Smart+Strong (and its advertisers) would have no say in what was discussed here or how it was discussed back when the site was purchased.

The more I think about it, the more I see that, really, Bocker, you hit the nail on the head. And with all the back and forth in this thread, that aspect has never been discussed.

Why shouldn't S+S's bottom line be the overriding concern? I'm certain that those banned members living with HIV have found other sources for support, right?
Blessed with brains, talent and gorgeous tits.

The revolutionary smart set reads The Spin Cycle at least once every day.

Blathering on AIDSmeds since 2005, provocative from birth

Offline Lis

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #67 on: September 13, 2008, 07:41:41 PM »
oops.... :-*
poz 1986....

Offline NycJoe

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #68 on: September 13, 2008, 08:02:10 PM »
I think being a moderator must be a thankless job.  You do what you think is in the best interest of the forum overall and you are damned if you do and damned if you don't.  I appreciate all of the efforts that have gone into making this a safe place.   It is BECAUSE of the great job that has been done by the moderators to keep this place in check that I continue to come back and recommend this site to others.  I am an adult and do not need to be warned over and over again to not be an asshole to others on this site.  If I am asshole to someone on here because I am having a bad day/week then I get warned and wake the fuck up realizing that, gee..I don't want to lose my privileges to come on here.  It is all very simple.  So kudos to the moderators and don't let all the criticism get to you.

Offline Lisa

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #69 on: September 13, 2008, 08:08:32 PM »
Oh man, I have so many things to say, but unfortunately will forget about 50% of it before I get to everything.
To those who insist upon using the business model as an illustrative point: The boys went for as long as they could to keep from allowing ANY advertising on this site. This originally having been a smaller site, they felt allowing any advertising compromised the integrity of the site. As we grew, and evolved, they were no longer able to keep the bills paid via the original means. It was a long and laboured decision to allow advertising here(and if I remember, there was a bit of consternation from the masses, as well as a smattering of tacky "sell out" comments at the time)in order to pay the bills, to keep the site going. Not only are they not necessarily obliged to these companies for anything, they still have a heavy say about what they will, and will not allow here.
 The focal point of this community has always been on it being a place to come and share, or read. They have always striven for it to be a safe place, but those those rules of flow have had to evolve like everything else here.
 If this were the dictatorship some purport it to be, then we wouldn't have all of the staff and mods wanting to listen to, and participate in the discussion.
This place has grown so much over the last four years since I first began posting.
It was simply a place of information, a place for the positives to have a place to discuss stuff, and for those who had questions about a risk assessment.
Then we discussed and implemented a new forum where it was OK for the negs. and pozzies to have fun, and interact. We didn't used to have an Off Topic forum. Strictly business(sort of), and with that change came a whole new sense of community. We could banter, and joke around, and discuss not so serious things. Now we have a plethora of fora, with each intended to be a safer population for a target group of people.
 When we first moved into these new forums/website/servers a couple of years ago, there was a disciplinary discussion held in the forums, and we more or less voted, or stated what we thought would work the best at the time.
 The staff, and mods(who work tirelessly, and thanklessly) do not, and never have taken banning people lightly. They know this is a support forum, and no one wants to have to exclude anyone from the specific type of caring and community this place has given refuge to.
When we first had the disciplinary discussions, I never felt like perma banning was a good idea, for all of the reasons stated here by everyone.
For the entire period it took me to read this thread(which was considerable, what with the dementia etc.) I kept thinking of one certain person who always advocated for prudence when we were dealing with someone who was a bit out of control.
As has been stated many times, we don't know what may be going on in each persons life, on the other side of the screen. Maybe they just pulled their head out of the porcelain throne, maybe the buffalo hump has been hurting their back for over two weeks, and they are becoming a bit cranky, maybe someone is in pain physically, or mentally.
And sometimes we just have really shitty days. I can't count the times I have been in a totally foul mood, and not even really known why. I do try to moderate myself, and not be short with others, but ask my kids what a bitch I can be sometimes. ::yes, I know I sound all sweetsie here, most of the time, but I have days that I could take your head clean off in one bite::
Pain, depression, substance abuse, chronic sickliness, just recovering from a bad spell, all manner of things can make us inhospitable on any given day.
I still vote to add the six mo. ban, but I also like the two year clean slate idea.  That way, no one would ever have to be completely, and permanently banned from the site. I just can't bring myself to even think of any member going away forever, unless it is to the other side.
I still wonder about many of our banned members, and I think about how they are doing, how their health is. I worry about them.
I do agree with the business about the denialists, snake oil salesmen, puppets, and solicitors though.
No Fear  No Shame  No Stigma
Happiness is not getting what you want, but wanting what you have.

Offline Assurbanipal

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #70 on: September 13, 2008, 08:12:51 PM »
Philly, David_NC - I take those points and can now see some merit to a lengthy TO - but I think if it's to work then there has to be zero tolerance after the six months, i.e. further transgressions result in another lengthy TO without further warnings.

Keyite

That's what I was (not too articulately ) trying to propose. As Allopathologistic points out, it offers a policy that might be more transparent to members and potentially easier on the moderators (although they are the best arbiters of that).  

The hope is that by having a less drastic policy that is less painful for all parties to apply, discipline would be seen to be enforced more often without losing the sense of community that some find to be important.

A
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 Andy Velez

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #71 on: September 13, 2008, 08:29:28 PM »
Dear All,

I just want to assure you that your voices, feelings and opinions are being heard. I know that we will be discussing among the AM staff what's been said here. I'm grateful for this kind of quality conversation about a not simple matter that is very important to all of us.

As a brief aside, Kom, I want to mention that quite a while back people were asked not to post large pictures in any other part of the Forums than Off Topic because they somehow seemed to screw up some people's computers. I can't explain the technical stuff about it but I know that Ann and others had problems with big pictures. Thanks for your cooperation.

Meanwhile I want to say thanks to all who have spoken here.

Abrazos,

« Last Edit: September 13, 2008, 08:32:22 PM by Andy Velez »
Andy Velez

Offline Assurbanipal

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #72 on: September 13, 2008, 08:36:21 PM »
The more I think about it, the more I see that, really, Bocker, you hit the nail on the head. And with all the back and forth in this thread, that aspect has never been discussed.

Bucko

You are far more eloquent (and sexy) than I.  I've read most of your old posts and I'm excited to see you posting again in the forums.  And I'm sure that personal ties make this a particularly trying topic for you (I hope its clear that I, like just about everyone else on here, wish all the best to MtD).  So, I'm hesitant to take this up ...

But...

I've worked for organizations that adopted mission statements to fit a business model and changed missions to maximize profits.  And I've worked for organizations that had a strong mission and found a business model to support that mission.  Every indicator I've seen, including the frequent messages in this thread from the moderators, is that AIDSMEDS is, has been and remains one of the latter.

Respectfully
A
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 bocker3

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #73 on: September 13, 2008, 08:55:58 PM »
You know, the longer I think about this the angrier I became.

We were promised by Peter Staley that Smart+Strong (and its advertisers) would have no say in what was discussed here or how it was discussed back when the site was purchased.

The more I think about it, the more I see that, really, Bocker, you hit the nail on the head. And with all the back and forth in this thread, that aspect has never been discussed.

Why shouldn't S+S's bottom line be the overriding concern? I'm certain that those banned members living with HIV have found other sources for support, right?

Well frankly -- I NEVER said it was an overriding concern -- you are cooking that one up in your own head, so please don't put it on me.  I was making a point that if membership takes a hit because of lack of rules enforcement, then how does one expect this site to remain a going concern.  That would be true whether owned by a for-profit company or not.

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 atlq

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #74 on: September 13, 2008, 10:17:10 PM »
Now -- I would like to hear what the moderators think of the suggestion around limiting bannable offenses to denialists, dangerous medical advice, sock puppets, etc and a progressively longer TO for the "behavioral" (for lack of a better term) offenses.  Maybe add the 6 mos and then 12 mos TO -- perhaps then followed by a ban at that point (this would allow about 2 yrs for someone to address any issues that made "behaving" difficult). -Mike



Regardless of what I think  about the incident that triggered this discussion, in the interest of the forum I would like to cast my "vote" for some sort of tiered, and limited TO schedule, as Philly originally suggested  and Mike has outlined above. Egregious conduct cannot be allowed to dissuade anyone from coming here to seek help, but when it comes to applying the "death penalty" to someone here, extenuating circumstances, intent, and character should also be taken into account.


 
“Keep up the good work....   And God bless you.”
  --  Sarah Palin, to members of the Alaskan Independence Party, 2008

Offline bmancanfly

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #75 on: September 13, 2008, 10:19:51 PM »
I normally don't post here very often but I feel like I need to weigh in.  I live in a small town and have very little contact with anyone gay and even less with other HIV+ people.  So this place is invaluable to me.  Even though I don't say much I have been helped by the information, support and sense of community here.  I look forward to coming here every day.  As a matter of fact I had dinner tonite with a friend and couldn't wait to get home so I could get back to this tread to seeing how it was progressing (I know, pretty pathetic life).

But this idea of permanantly banning a contributing member, even a crusty one, really offends my sensibilities.  Whatever happened to the belief in redemption?  I don't think any contributing member (excluding the denialists, salesmen etc) should ever be permanently banned.  A six month ban is a serious penalty.  If that person comes back and on the first day behaves badly, another six month ban.  Eventually, they're going to change their behavior or stop coming back.  

This place should be a community where even the unpleasant are welcome - but expected to behave.  When you tell someone they can never come back, regardless of how much they change, you have diminished that sense of community.

Peter this place is an amazing creation and i can't thank you enough for it.  
I have the utmost respect for the moderators of this forum - they do a great job.  But there is a certain authoritarian quality to this process that is making me uncomfortable.  The locking of the thread in the "Off Topic" forum and the threat to lock this one has an oppressive feel.  You're going to permanantly ban one of the most prominent members of this site and not allow anyone to comment on it directly - even in the Off Topic forum !?  It seems a bit oppressive.  "Just be quiet we know what's best,  lest we silence you too".  

Too your credit this thread has continued with the additional encouragements from the mods for feedback.  That has a much more democratic feel.

I found this place,  almost by accident,  shortly after my diagnosis.  I spent many an hour reading the posts here with tears of sadness running down my face.  But in time i became more at peace with my situation because of the help I found here.  Later I found myself reading some of the "banned ones" posts and laughing out loud.  I've come so far thanks to so many different people.  I'd hate to think that we would turn our backs, FOREVER, on any contributing member.

Please consider changing the TO policy.
"The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt."

 Bertrand Russell

Offline Bucko

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #76 on: September 13, 2008, 10:24:16 PM »


I've worked for organizations that adopted mission statements to fit a business model and changed missions to maximize profits.  And I've worked for organizations that had a strong mission and found a business model to support that mission.  Every indicator I've seen, including the frequent messages in this thread from the moderators, is that AIDSMEDS is, has been and remains one of the latter.

Respectfully
A

A-

I have no doubt that there is a level of altruism involved in keeping this place going. I know at least two of the moderators here are unpaid (or were when last I knew). I have no doubt that the people who founded this had high hopes, many of which have been realized. They deserve my congratulations and gratitude for what they've been able to accomplish.

But--

With every respect I have to say that there has been a sea-change here, and it's not just the march of progress. I applaud the new fora added over the last two years: the Women's space and the LTS area most especially. I was there when the Activism forum was opened in response to a highly provocative post on The Spin Cycle. I've always said that anything that stops growing starts dying.

But there is a decided chill here, and the absence of so many, so very many, of the veterans here is keenly felt by me. When i have needed the added support of a friend off-boards, I found it in large number by men and women who are no longer part of AIDSmeds. These are good people, caring and compassionate people who live with great stresses but who found the time to make sure that I knew I wasn't alone in this fight.

Some were banned outright, most simply understood that AIDSmeds was only as powerful as its membership and walked away in frustration, and we've lost some powerful voices. Why? What terrible crime did a man in his 60s who could no longer walk, with diminishing eyesight, flagging energy and chronic pain possibly commit to be barred permanently from making his opinions known, his experience shared and supporting those in need?

I'm told that rules are required or else anarchy will ensue. Really? So now AIDSmeds is so enormous, the population so immense, that without some standards applicable to all we'd have the onerous task of judging each member separately and on the individual basis of his or her merit? We do that already. There's not a soul on this board who doesn't agree completely that trolls, spammers and denialists are unwelcome. Absolutely everyone else is here at the discretion of the management, who set and enforce the rules.

And of course, we're all equal. Really?  Each of us contributes equally? Each of us has the same relationship with other members of the board? Each of us is in equal health? How are we all equal, then?

I say we're all exceptional. I say that because we're all exceptional, we're all to be judged differently and based on who we are and what we contribute and to what extent we depend on AM for our peace of mind. It seems obvious to me that missywho78 who sticks in Women's and Lipo and never raises a peep obviously doesn't need to be told what's appropriate. And I really don't think that the member who was banned for calling out various members as part of a "Jewish Cabal" cared when he wrote it that he'd not be welcomed back. It's all fucking obvious and universal.

Ultimately this isn't about any one member. I know how to reach those whom I love; we have the operations all in place and are, to a large degree, no longer dependent on AM to be able to communicate. I enjoy sharing here, but if I'm looking over my shoulder at every post to make sure that I haven't offended a fuckwit then I'd really rather not bother.  

Reading how grievous the process of banning is strikes me as crocodile tears. We all know that the internet is not a democracy, it's a collection of fiefdoms. The powers that be hold all the cards. As I've written above, we're all here at their discretion. We know it, they know it. I'm reminded of parents who say that there's no other way of handling their unruly children except for beating them. We know this is untrue because we all know that some parents don't believe in corporal punishment and, somehow, they manage to get their kids through high school. In most cases, kids are slapped not because of what they do (because they're kids and it's what kids do), it's because the parents have reached a boiling point and in their frustration lash out.

That's understandable. It's one of the reasons why I'll never have kids (they're kinda hard to conceive doing what I do anyway). But those who do make the commitment are not allowed such luxuries of doubt. It never hurts the parent more than the kid...not really.

To those who want to pick on my analogy about kids and responsibility: You're right. This isn't about punishment, it's about restitution and vengeance. The death penalty always is.  

 

 
Blessed with brains, talent and gorgeous tits.

The revolutionary smart set reads The Spin Cycle at least once every day.

Blathering on AIDSmeds since 2005, provocative from birth

Offline Bucko

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #77 on: September 13, 2008, 10:33:48 PM »
Well frankly -- I NEVER said it was an overriding concern -- you are cooking that one up in your own head, so please don't put it on me.  I was making a point that if membership takes a hit because of lack of rules enforcement, then how does one expect this site to remain a going concern.  That would be true whether owned by a for-profit company or not.

Mike


Unfortunately -- by taking just one line without what preceeded it you missed my point. 

I said that compassion and discretion was good and necessary (and that I thought the mods have been displaying both), but it can't go on forever.  Eventually, no matter what is going on with the individual his or her issue(s) can't allow an indefinite impact on the rest of the individuals (and Bucko's point -- to the bottomline of the company -- because if the sponsor decides to pull the plug -- well, you get the picture.
So, I'm not trying to imply that the crowd always trumps the individual -- but eventually that decision needs to be looked at if there is no improvement.   It's an important distinction IMO.

BTW -- I've always liked Trek geeks -- I've even discovered that on cbs.com you can see some original episodes in High-definition!   ;D

Mike

I obviously don't know what you were thinking, but I do know what you wrote.

You agree with this whole permanent banning thing, especially when it involves someone you find personally distasteful. I disagree. Imagine!
Blessed with brains, talent and gorgeous tits.

The revolutionary smart set reads The Spin Cycle at least once every day.

Blathering on AIDSmeds since 2005, provocative from birth

Offline atlq

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #78 on: September 13, 2008, 10:42:22 PM »
I just want to say thank you to the moderators for trying to clean up the joint. It will be nice to be able to come here a little more often now without having to see things that help no one and quite frankly are embarrassingly childish to see in a support forum for adults.

Keep up the good work!  ;D

Daniel

Well Daniel maybe you can send a list of of the "dirty" spots that still need "cleaning"......we'll get this place sanitized for you yet!....

(Since we are in a thread dealing with peoples hurt feelings about posts and the consequences, I guess I will have to point out that the above comment was "goodnatured sarcasm"...Geez)


edited for numerous typos...
« Last Edit: September 13, 2008, 11:26:26 PM by atlq »
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Offline Lis

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #79 on: September 13, 2008, 11:25:49 PM »
And I thought that I was the only one that needed bunnies and cotten candy!!!

just kidding... there are never any perfect ways to talk to people you dont know.. and will never know.. I always found that sarcasim REALLY makes me laugh.. (at myself and this bug)  But there are others that take it too seriously... what are ya gonna do?  we are who we are
poz 1986....

Offline bocker3

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #80 on: September 14, 2008, 12:02:17 AM »
I obviously don't know what you were thinking, but I do know what you wrote.

You agree with this whole permanent banning thing, especially when it involves someone you find personally distasteful. I disagree. Imagine!

Clearly you write much better than you read -- I've stated in a number of posts in this thread that the permanent ban rule should be rethought.  So take a deep breath, read it all again and then tell me how that shows I am in agreement OR where I have spoke about anyone whom I found personally distasteful.  All I see is you putting words into my mouth and I don't appreciate it.  Not sure why you are directing your anger at me - quite baffling actually.   ???

Mike
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Offline jkinatl2

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #81 on: September 14, 2008, 12:43:34 AM »
As much as I respect and admire those who run the site, today I am deeply, deeply disappointed in the moderators and owners for their decision. And I am disgusted beyond words at those who applaud it.

And honestly, that's my final word on the matter.

I think I need to back way, way, way off.

"Many people, especially in the gay community, turn to oral sex as a safer alternative in the age of AIDS. And with HIV rates rising, people need to remember that oral sex is safer sex. It's a reasonable alternative."

-Kimberly Page-Shafer, PhD, MPH

Welcome Thread

Offline DanielMark

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #82 on: September 14, 2008, 05:19:25 AM »
Well Daniel maybe you can send a list of of the "dirty" spots that still need "cleaning"......we'll get this place sanitized for you yet!....

(Since we are in a thread dealing with peoples hurt feelings about posts and the consequences, I guess I will have to point out that the above comment was "goodnatured sarcasm"...Geez)


edited for numerous typos...


I hesitate to respond to that because I don’t want to go too far off-topic but sarcasm rarely works in print because unless someone knows you well, it can be perceived as insulting and condescending. Just so you know.

Scoff if you must, but to me it’s really very simple. Internet forums function better when civility is expected and kept. They just do. There’s enough chaos in the world without having to dread finding it purposely being created in forums that are intended for support, especially on a subject as serious as HIV/AIDS. Not everyone is dealing as well as everyone else with that right?

This isn’t a game to me. Life is short and my time is valuable. If people want to waste time and play head games there are plenty of other forums on the Internet better suited to that.

Carry on.

Daniel
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Offline atlq

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #83 on: September 14, 2008, 06:24:13 AM »
I hesitate to respond to that because I don’t want to go too far off-topic but sarcasm rarely works in print because unless someone knows you well, it can be perceived as insulting and condescending. Just so you know.

Scoff if you must, but to me it’s really very simple. Internet forums function better when civility is expected and kept. They just do. There’s enough chaos in the world without having to dread finding it purposely being created in forums that are intended for support, especially on a subject as serious as HIV/AIDS. Not everyone is dealing as well as everyone else with that right?

This isn’t a game to me. Life is short and my time is valuable. If people want to waste time and play head games there are plenty of other forums on the Internet better suited to that.

Carry on.

Daniel

Daniel,

Thanks for the helpful writing tips.....( they were meant to be helpful right?...cause they felt kind of, you know, condescending... :)).

I agree totally with you on this however; time (yours, mine...) is valuable and  I , at least, have made my feelings on this topic known; so I am also withdrawing from this arena.

I thank the moderators for continuing to provide me (and others) the space to engage, debate,have a laugh,and occasionally even learn something (scoffing and all).

Now where are those damn coffee filters....


All the best.


8:45 am-after a morning run and some coffee, I have come back to edit this post.  Daniel, I apologize for personalising my earlier response to you (the irony of my doing that in a thread on behavior in the forums just struck me). While I stand by what I have have said in this thread, I need to allow others space also.

The stuff that's not struck out still stands!... :)









« Last Edit: September 14, 2008, 08:51:21 AM by atlq »
“Keep up the good work....   And God bless you.”
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Offline Assurbanipal

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #84 on: September 14, 2008, 07:59:21 AM »
The initial proposal had two or three basic ideas in it:
1) To define members of the community as opposed to trolls, denialists etc.  The proposal there was to establish a guideline number of, for instance, 100 posts
2) For those members of the community to replace (retroactively) a ban with a 6 month or twelve month timeout.

Discussion so far has focused on the timeout period, appearing to coalesce around a 6 month period, repeated as necessary.  While any decision on changes is of course up to the moderators, are there any comments on how to define a member of the community?  Is a post count guideline helpful or is it just obvious to all concerned?  And what about "retroactivity" / transition (i.e. that those who have been gone for 6 months or more would be immediately welcomed back).  If there are strong views it would probably be helpful to the moderators to know what they are.

Thanks
A

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
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Offline SteveA

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #85 on: September 14, 2008, 08:35:02 AM »
Wow! I don't even know where to start! Let me just say that even though I never was on MtD's good side, I NEVER asked for him to be banned. I just wanted him to lay off of doing shit like posting my personal information that he scoured the net for in threads here. He never showed me his helpful side once, just his vindictiveness. Still, rather than ask that he be banned, I just stopped posting almost all together and peace ensued. I agree that there should be a tiered level of Timeouts, probably all the way up to a 1 year TO.

I won't be a hypocrite and say I'll miss him, but I wouldn't wish PermaBan on Anyone who needs the support given here. Not even MtD. I will enjoy the peace and quiet of his absence for a while though.

Offline SteveA

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #86 on: September 14, 2008, 08:40:53 AM »
The initial proposal had two or three basic ideas in it:
1) To define members of the community as opposed to trolls, denialists etc.  The proposal there was to establish a guideline number of, for instance, 100 posts
2) For those members of the community to replace (retroactively) a ban with a 6 month or twelve month timeout.

Discussion so far has focused on the timeout period, appearing to coalesce around a 6 month period, repeated as necessary.  While any decision on changes is of course up to the moderators, are there any comments on how to define a member of the community?  Is a post count guideline helpful or is it just obvious to all concerned?  And what about "retroactivity" / transition (i.e. that those who have been gone for 6 months or more would be immediately welcomed back).  If there are strong views it would probably be helpful to the moderators to know what they are.

Thanks
A

I don't think "Post Counts" should be used as a guideliine at all. I've been a member just a few days shy of MtD's membership and I've hardly written a fraction of the posts he has. As far as I'm concerned, anyone affected by HIV is a member of this community. Always have felt that way and always will.

Online RapidRod

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #87 on: September 14, 2008, 08:42:21 AM »
For those that are relatively new to the forums you need to know that when a banning does happen it's not from one or two warnings that you have seen in the public forums. Most warnings are given in PMs to the member which none of you actually see. What you actually see is the final result of a member not heeding the warnings that have been given. And yes, if one is banned it's because we didn't heed the warnings. I consider Matty as a very good friend of mine and yes I'll miss him, like I do Tim, but we all know if we don't following the policies and guidelines lines what the out come will be. Most of the members that have been here for years can remember we were the ones that asked for the policies and guidelines because the forums were way out of control. Now that the policies are in place we all need to abide by them.

Offline DanielMark

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #88 on: September 14, 2008, 09:35:41 AM »
8:45 am-after a morning run and some coffee, I have come back to edit this post.  Daniel, I apologize for personalising my earlier response to you (the irony of my doing that in a thread on behavior in the forums just struck me). While I stand by what I have have said in this thread, I need to allow others space also.

The stuff that's not struck out still stands!... :)


Thanks rethinking your words atlq. Apology accepted.

Daniel
MEDS: REYATAZ & KIVEXA (SINCE AUG 2008)

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Offline Dachshund

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #89 on: September 14, 2008, 10:28:04 AM »
I haven't talked to Matty about his ban, but when I do, I can assure one and all he'll say is something along the line of, "aw Dox, I shot my mouth off once too often and received the proper caning." No crying or moaning from my mate Matty. Not from that one. I figured the usual suspects would use this thread to cloak themselves in piety, but in reality are saying, "I'm glad the SOB got banned." Typical.

I've had the rare privilege to get to know Matty over the years. Without a doubt a better person does not exist among forum members. Not one. I've watched him hold the hand online of more than one dying member. Raise and protect a kid from predators, that yes roamed these very forums. Come to the defense of many of those "baby seals" described above. He's been the sole voice of defense for forum members loathed by one and all (Eldon ring a bell?) and I include myself in that. Why, because Matty on his own took the time to talk to the guy and realized, the guy suffered from severe emotional and mental problems and could not defend himself. Sure Matty didn't suffer fools gladly, and we all bear the sting of his honest words. But cruelty? not on your life.

So, where do we go from here? Couple a years ago, I started a thread asking for a definition on timeouts and banning. We had a long, drawn out, protracted discussion and some guidelines were set. However, there was the caveat that all decisions would ultimately come down to the moderators. That's what I mean when I describe the forum as a party. Yes, we've been invited, but you can be asked to leave at any time.

One more thing and I am through here. There's a bit hypocrisy involved from the top to the bottom in threads like these. I hope people realize that.
« Last Edit: September 14, 2008, 11:11:29 AM by Dachshund »

Offline ademas

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #90 on: September 14, 2008, 10:47:22 AM »
I can't read this entire thread...it's just not in my mindset for today.

There are some of us, though, who read more than we participate here, and we have connections, and friendships, and feelings, for the more prolific posters, because they share more, and we relate to them.

We don't keep in touch with them by phone, or email, or PM, and when they are banned from this site, they simply disappear to us.  Our friends.  Our support.  Our extended family.

Call me melodramatic, but it takes me back to pre-HAART days in a way.  Here one day, gone tomorrow. 

Offline allopathicholistic

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #91 on: September 14, 2008, 10:52:59 AM »
Keyite

That's what I was (not too articulately ) trying to propose. 
 


Hi Assurbanipal. It's a compassionate "ejection idea" because in essence we'd all be sitting on "ejector seats" http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ejector_seat with the exception of the Moderators but at the same time no one would ever feel "banished". 

However, one odd thing about the idea might be this: Technically you can see a person post for a day and then they suddenly vanish for 6 months (ejected), then come back for a week, then get ejected again. For newer members, a member like this would take on a "Greta Garbo" quality, in the sense that you rarely get to see the person. Older members would know it's the net effect of updated policies.

RapidRod: I want to say thank you for your post. It's very insightful.

Offline Iggy

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #92 on: September 14, 2008, 11:44:37 AM »
I appreciate the last thing any of the moderators are interested in (and what they most detest) is moderating personalities. This critical point, I think, is being lost in the discussion, and yet is central to what needs to be considered for both this instance and a possible compromise in future moderator actions.

Unfortunately the majority of the most controversial and emotional (for the board) time-outs and disciplinarian decisions (including bannings) have their origins in posters who cause strong emotional responses in people, and which by nature is going to have those either strongly in favor or against the person in question; it also repeatedly results in a debate of whether a banning is fair, and sometimes followed by an unnecessary conspiracy theory based on questioning the motivations of the board moderators/owners/site with whispers of corporate greed playing a role.

The bottom line is that with the exception of banning of posters who purposefully come to the board to insert denialist claims, sell products or intentionally disrupt the flow of the community via purposeful racism, sexism and other prejudices as an m.o., moderators will continue to face this issue and subsequent uproar every time there is a banning of a member.  To assume otherwise or to think there is a complete solution is to misunderstand the very basis of the outrage being felt right now by some.

I also think that the argument for the idea of a 6 month ban, followed by a 12 month ban as a replacement for a permanent ban is a bit of a false argument in this debate as I can see the potential for this whole scenario being raised again the first time someone is placed on a 6 month or 12 month ban. 

That said I would rather take a chance on this compromise then  to void it before it is given an opportunity.  I also agree with most that I do not like the idea of anyone (minus that group of denilalsts et al mentioned above) being banned from these boards.

While I think that the individual can not come before the group (and I fear that the whole individual vs. group argument on the board is becoming a code for  "group think"  or "group sensibility" vs group of individuals) I do feel that by nature of being a community we have to make allowances for the individuals that comprise us...however that  also requires a reciprocal agreement by the individuals to be willing to make allowances for the community as a whole.

With this in mind, and to return to my opening point of removing the moderators (as far as possible) from the role of moderating personalities I am in favor keeping the current time out structure supplemented with an additional 6 month and then twelve month penalties; these penalties however should be issued by the moderators without discussion or notice to the board members in general when they are issued on an individual.  There would be no open debate on such decisions.

In other words, if we want to remove arguments about hurt feelings, need for thicker skins, being adults , etc, when it comes to the rationale for disciplining a member then we must equally be adults when it comes to the rules and remove the emotional and public lobbying when the moderators decided to enforce the regulations. 

On a related note, moderators should not invite such cans of worms to be opened by publicly discipling members or announcing such decisions:  Automatic use of penalties with a pm sent for explanation alone should be the standard.  This will allow the moderators to continue to remove themselves from personality clashes while simply enforcing board rules.  It also keeps such clashes out of the flow of public board discussions.

I do want to add that I am in favor of wiping away the current bans on ny member and offering a clean slate for those who wish to return; Not wanting to add the burden to the moderators regarding the logistics of separating denlialists et all from others, I do however suggest that is done based on the respective member sending an email to the AIDSmeds team requesting reinstatement - this will allow the moderators to confirm the new rules with the respective member.

Finally with the change of the way the penalties are enforced with the personality based issues of the board, I do add my support to the calls that the energy and time on disciplinary actions would be better spent with a more critical eye in the Research, Nutrition and Treatment forums.  While I agree that this board has an excellent group of moderators and members who do counter many false theories being battered about in those areas, there has been an embarressing allowance of a small minority of posters to continually overrun such forums with multiple postings that discredit legitimate science, and real information. 

Frankly if we want to protect the community (including the community who lurk whether members or not,) then we must primarily protect the information that is coming out of this site as legitimate and based in real debate and study.   Flooding the forums with harmful pseudo-science and misinformation about current therapies  causes far more damage to this board and the community of those with HIV in general then any individual member no matter what his personality could ever do.


Offline komnaes

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #93 on: September 14, 2008, 11:47:42 AM »
It may sound to some folks here that we are trying to defend this one person - no doubt this ban is very personal to me - but if it isn't for the fact that I have invested a lot of my feelings in these forums I would not have participated in this thread. Set aside my personal feelings toward Matty, I want these forums to be great, and being great means it should have a diversity of styles.

Look, I have only seen an outpouring of supports whenever I needed them, and it's the same to everyone. No one new and/or in crisis has been treated cruelly with menace. I have said it before and will say it again that the AM has been life-saving, and a great number of you have made it so for me. I can't even begin to comprehend how could anyone see it otherwise. I have asked folks to give me an example on how other folks were treated like lost "baby seals", no one has given one yet.

So why we are here? The only conclusion I can reach is that this banned member has probably been persistently refusing to yield, i.e. change his "caustic" style that the "baby seals" have claimed to have hurt their feelings, threatening that they would not return unless something is being done about it. Rod's post above seems to confirm this - as it probably explains some of the rather unnecessarily asking-for-trouble remarks this banned member made in the last few days. And of course there have been open accusations that he was being treated favorably - that he was this lovely thug that no one could control.

Perhaps that was why it has to come this painful decision that our mods have to make. I can definitely see how difficult it must have been, but at the end is it really about our banning policy? Daniel said something about the need to make this place even more safe as the real world is messy enough - I love you Daniel but any attempt to do so will only backfire. If you want to do so you might as well change these forums into the Ask-the-Expert selection of body.com. Human interactions entail unpredictability, which to some may already be too brutal to face.

At the end on one is irreplaceable in this world, let along an online forum. Like a few of us have said before, discussions like this thread in the past have made this community even stronger. And I second David's plead that let's rid of the perma ban - make it six months.
Aug 07 Diagnosed
Oct 07 CD4=446(19%) Feb 08 CD4=421(19%)
Jun 08 CD4=325(22%) Jul 08 CD4=301(18%)
Sep 08 CD4=257/VL=75,000 Oct 08 CD4=347(16%)
Dec 08 CD4=270(16%)
Jan 09 CD4=246(13%)/VL=10,000
Feb 09 CD4=233(15%)/VL=13,000
Started meds Sustiva/Epzicom
May 09 CD4=333(24%)/VL=650
Aug 09 CD4=346(24%)/VL=UD
Nov 09 CD4=437(26%)/VL=UD
Feb 10 CD4=471(31%)/VL=UD
June 10 CD4=517 (28%)/VL=UD
Sept 10 CD4=687 (31%)/VL=UD
Jan 11 CD4=557 (30%)/VL=UD
April 11 CD4=569 (32%)/VL=UD
Switched to Epizcom, Reyataz and Norvir
(Interrupted for 2 months with only Epizcom & Reyataz)
July 11 CD=520 (28%)/VL=UD
Oct 11 CD=771 (31%)/VL=UD(<30)
April 12 CD=609 (28%)/VL=UD(<20)
Aug 12 CD=657 (29%)/VL=UD(<20)
Dec 12 CD=532 (31%)/VL=UD(<20)
May 13 CD=567 (31%)/VL=UD(<20)
Jan 14 CD=521 (21%)/VL=UD(<50)

Offline Alain

  • Member
  • Posts: 680
  • I am.
Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #94 on: September 14, 2008, 12:19:00 PM »
6 months ban will not change the behavior of some members, no matter who they are.

You are basically asking for the person to change, only they can do that.

The making of Matty, is what and who he is, as a person.

You either accept members as they are or you just ignore them; it's that simple.

And that is not addressing the rules, which in the end we all know what they are.

Then, we make our choices.


Offline Miss Philicia

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  • Posts: 23,904
  • celebrity poster, faker & poser
Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #95 on: September 14, 2008, 12:25:59 PM »
I implore folks not to turn this thread into a venting about one specific ban, or we'll have to lock the thread.  Let's keep it about our banning policy in general, and how these forums are moderated.

Thanks,

Peter


Some of you here need to learn to listen to warnings from the moderators.
"I’ve slept with enough men to know that I’m not gay"

Offline komnaes

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,893
Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #96 on: September 14, 2008, 12:35:09 PM »
Some of you here need to learn to listen to warnings from the moderators.

How about this -

Look, I have only seen an outpouring of supports whenever I needed them, and it's the same to everyone. No one new and/or in crisis has been treated cruelly with menace. I have said it before and will say it again that the AM has been life-saving, and a great number of you have made it so for me. I can't even begin to comprehend how could anyone see it otherwise. I have asked folks to give me an example on how other folks were treated like lost "baby seals", no one has given one yet.

Daniel said something about the need to make this place even more safe as the real world is messy enough - I love you Daniel but any attempt to do so will only backfire. If you want to do so you might as well change these forums into the Ask-the-Expert selection of body.com. Human interactions entail unpredictability, which to some may already be too brutal to face.

At the end on one is irreplaceable in this world, let along an online forum. Like a few of us have said before, discussions like this thread in the past have made this community even stronger. And I second David's plead that let's rid of the perma ban - make it six months.

.. and add that ..

We don't need more sense of finality and banishment - on one is trying to change no one - a 6 month ban and immediate re-ban for any out-of-line behaviors would have been enough.



Aug 07 Diagnosed
Oct 07 CD4=446(19%) Feb 08 CD4=421(19%)
Jun 08 CD4=325(22%) Jul 08 CD4=301(18%)
Sep 08 CD4=257/VL=75,000 Oct 08 CD4=347(16%)
Dec 08 CD4=270(16%)
Jan 09 CD4=246(13%)/VL=10,000
Feb 09 CD4=233(15%)/VL=13,000
Started meds Sustiva/Epzicom
May 09 CD4=333(24%)/VL=650
Aug 09 CD4=346(24%)/VL=UD
Nov 09 CD4=437(26%)/VL=UD
Feb 10 CD4=471(31%)/VL=UD
June 10 CD4=517 (28%)/VL=UD
Sept 10 CD4=687 (31%)/VL=UD
Jan 11 CD4=557 (30%)/VL=UD
April 11 CD4=569 (32%)/VL=UD
Switched to Epizcom, Reyataz and Norvir
(Interrupted for 2 months with only Epizcom & Reyataz)
July 11 CD=520 (28%)/VL=UD
Oct 11 CD=771 (31%)/VL=UD(<30)
April 12 CD=609 (28%)/VL=UD(<20)
Aug 12 CD=657 (29%)/VL=UD(<20)
Dec 12 CD=532 (31%)/VL=UD(<20)
May 13 CD=567 (31%)/VL=UD(<20)
Jan 14 CD=521 (21%)/VL=UD(<50)

Offline Jerry71

  • Member
  • Posts: 955
  • {Lexiva, Norvir, Complera} Still Breathing!!!
Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #97 on: September 14, 2008, 12:55:54 PM »
For one that does not come to this site anymore but sits back in the sidelines and just watches what happens to the site for any new topics. I can say we have had our feelings poured out here in this topic.

Timeouts are good in a way and bad in a way. I can see giving a child a timeout for being mean but come on this is the WORLD WIDE WEB.

Banning someone for running his/her mouth off I really don't see the need for banning that person. Unless they are really threat the individual. There is also the Ignore feature here which most of the new people that come to the site never use or don't know how to use. You people think this place is your only place you can come to vent. All I can say is there is a whole other world out there besides this place. There are some of you that come on here every day and there are others that just read the site and never log on.

Well it just takes one person to open there mouth here and start a thread like this one and the place livens up again.  This will soon boil over and everyone will go back to what they were doing and the people or should I say our friends that get banned from the site will be forgotten. I have seen it many times before and I have been here since 2005. I miss the ones that have got banned from the past and I have got to personally meet some of them in person they are just like all of us.

We all have our bad days we all have our good days. Give it a rest.

WE ALL HAVE AIDS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Offline SteveA

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  • Posts: 174
Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #98 on: September 14, 2008, 02:08:41 PM »
I have asked folks to give me an example on how other folks were treated like lost "baby seals", no one has given one yet.

How do you KNOW that nobody was in Crisis when MtD went after them in the forums? Do you KNOW the Mental/Emotional/Health state I was in personally when he followed the link in my signature at the time and found as much personal information about me as he could, including my full legal name, and reposted it here in the forums for anyone with Google to see? Sure it was available on the net elsewhere, but I never made my full name and location known here. That was done by him out of pure vindictiveness. Don't tell me it was some attempt to help me out in any way.

I was in a health crisis at the time this all happened and made a few posts that irritated him so he made it his mission to plague my every posting here with hostility, so I put him on ignore. He continued trolling my every post even after his ignore status was made known to him. The only "Peace" I got was to walk away and let him have this sand box, only to return when I vitally needed a bit of information from here about a med or a treatment. My leaving AM had nothing to do with his caustic wit or sarcasm. It was his outright hatefulness towards me that drove me off. Period.

Still, I left rather than ask for him to be banned. Nobody should be cut off from support.

So why we are here? The only conclusion I can reach is that this banned member has probably been persistently refusing to yield, i.e. change his "caustic" style that the "baby seals" have claimed to have hurt their feelings, threatening that they would not return unless something is being done about it. Rod's post above seems to confirm this - as it probably explains some of the rather unnecessarily asking-for-trouble remarks this banned member made in the last few days. And of course there have been open accusations that he was being treated favorably - that he was this lovely thug that no one could control.

Umm... unless I read this thread wrong, MtD WAS Given special treatment in that he had 4 TO's instead of the ruled upon 3 TO's before his banning was made. 

In any case, He is still able to read the forums here and email all his friends who trusted him enough to give him an email address. He can also still email the site owners and plead his own case or ask for support from them via email. He's not totally out in the cold.

Offline Dachshund

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  • Posts: 5,943
Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #99 on: September 14, 2008, 02:17:31 PM »
How do you KNOW that nobody was in Crisis when MtD went after them in the forums? Do you KNOW the Mental/Emotional/Health state I was in personally when he followed the link in my signature at the time and found as much personal information about me as he could, including my full legal name, and reposted it here in the forums for anyone with Google to see? Sure it was available on the net elsewhere, but I never made my full name and location known here. That was done by him out of pure vindictiveness. Don't tell me it was some attempt to help me out in any way.

I was in a health crisis at the time this all happened and made a few posts that irritated him so he made it his mission to plague my every posting here with hostility, so I put him on ignore. He continued trolling my every post even after his ignore status was made known to him. The only "Peace" I got was to walk away and let him have this sand box, only to return when I vitally needed a bit of information from here about a med or a treatment. My leaving AM had nothing to do with his caustic wit or sarcasm. It was his outright hatefulness towards me that drove me off. Period.

Still, I left rather than ask for him to be banned. Nobody should be cut off from support.

Umm... unless I read this thread wrong, MtD WAS Given special treatment in that he had 4 TO's instead of the ruled upon 3 TO's before his banning was made. 

In any case, He is still able to read the forums here and email all his friends who trusted him enough to give him an email address. He can also still email the site owners and plead his own case or ask for support from them via email. He's not totally out in the cold.

The perfect example of a banned member not being able to defend against personal attack that is absolutely not true.

« Last Edit: September 15, 2008, 07:26:30 AM by Dachshund »

Offline Peter Staley

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  • Posts: 1,337
  • Founder & Advisory Editor, AIDSmeds.com
    • AIDSmeds.com
Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #100 on: September 14, 2008, 02:23:21 PM »
I really don't want to lock this thread, but will if this happens again.

No one should discuss the specifics of the latest banning, of offer praise or criticism of Matty here.  Steve's post is out of bounds, but so are those posts that kept asking for specific evidence of Matty's misdeeds, implying the mods aren't being completely honest in what went down.

Stop it all now.  Stick to our banning policy in general.

Offline SteveA

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  • Posts: 174
Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #101 on: September 14, 2008, 02:30:28 PM »
I really don't want to lock this thread, but will if this happens again.

No one should discuss the specifics of the latest banning, of offer praise or criticism of Matty here.  Steve's post is out of bounds, but so are those posts that kept asking for specific evidence of Matty's misdeeds, implying the mods aren't being completely honest in what went down.

Stop it all now.  Stick to our banning policy in general.

Sorry but I was responding to a post asking for specific evidence and I gave it. It won't happen again.
« Last Edit: September 14, 2008, 02:32:06 PM by SteveA »

Offline David_CA

  • Member
  • Posts: 3,246
  • Joined: March 2006
Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #102 on: September 14, 2008, 03:13:17 PM »
Ideally, there would be no need for moderators ('cept to filter out the riff-raff that come here to disrupt the forums, sock puppets, denialists, etc).  Since we do appear to need moderators and some method for them to enforce the forum rules and policies, I'd like to see some changes.

1) TO's and warnings reset after a set period of time... say, one year.  People DO (sometimes) change.  Perhaps it's when their situation and needs change.  Perhaps it's when they realize how much they've lost by being prevented from posting for 6 months, but I think we have seen changes in members posting behavior.

2) Perhaps there would need to be less leniency in issuing them, too.  Examples:  When a PM that was clearly not intended for public viewing is posted, that would result in a warning.  Warnings should be given publicly so others, mainly newer members, will know what is not acceptable.   

3) After warnings and the 7- and 30-day TO's, a 6-month TO would follow.  After 6 months, the member would be allowed to begin posting.  At this point, there would be no warnings for 'infractions'.  There would only be 7- and 30-day TO's followed by another 6-month TO.

4) Thread locks and warnings - I'd like to see moderators send a PM requesting that a offending post be edited.  Generally, the poster is still online and will receive the warning.  If the post isn't edited in some set period, a warning or other disciplinary action would then be issued.

5) Permanent bans - These would be reserved for members who post to disrupt, sock puppets, etc.  It's obvious these members have no intent on participating, only causing problems. 

It is important that people feel comfortable and safe posting here.  Many folks lurk and read the forums long before they join and actually start posting.  If we turn them off from the beginning, while they're still in 'testing the waters', how likely are they to return and participate?  On the other hand, we don't want to lose valuable members whose input and support are an important part of these forums.  By implementing something like what I've suggested above, I don't see us having much to lose but possibly a lot to gain.

David
« Last Edit: September 14, 2008, 03:15:43 PM by David_NC »
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 Peter Staley

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,337
  • Founder & Advisory Editor, AIDSmeds.com
    • AIDSmeds.com
Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #103 on: September 14, 2008, 03:18:54 PM »
I said that compassion and discretion was good and necessary (and that I thought the mods have been displaying both), but it can't go on forever.  Eventually, no matter what is going on with the individual his or her issue(s) can't allow an indefinite impact on the rest of the individuals (and Bucko's point -- to the bottomline of the company -- because if the sponsor decides to pull the plug -- well, you get the picture.

You know, the longer I think about this the angrier I became.

We were promised by Peter Staley that Smart+Strong (and its advertisers) would have no say in what was discussed here or how it was discussed back when the site was purchased.

The more I think about it, the more I see that, really, Bocker, you hit the nail on the head. And with all the back and forth in this thread, that aspect has never been discussed.

Why shouldn't S+S's bottom line be the overriding concern? I'm certain that those banned members living with HIV have found other sources for support, right?

Wow.  Just...  wow.

Do you guys really think I think like that?  Do you really think I'm worrying about Gilead and GSK when all the moderators are IMing back and forth trying to make these decisions?

I could give a flying fuck what big pharma thinks about these forums -- feel free to send the URL of this post to the heads of their HIV marketing divisions -- I've met them all, and they won't be surprised I said this -- trust me. 

These forums make me feel proud each and every day.  The fact that I had a hand in building them, along with many others (including many long-term members, who I consider partners in this effort), fills me with pride.  I know the other mods feel the same way.

I'm sorry for the highjack, but I just can't let statements like this slide, lest others start to think there's some truth to them. 

You really don't know me, Bucko.  I have never questioned your motives here.  Please stop questioning mine.  I'm guessing they are actually the same.

Offline David_CA

  • Member
  • Posts: 3,246
  • Joined: March 2006
Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #104 on: September 14, 2008, 03:23:45 PM »
Ideally, there would be no need for moderators ('cept to filter out the riff-raff that come here to disrupt the forums, sock puppets, denialists, etc).  Since we do appear to need moderators and some method for them to enforce the forum rules and policies, I'd like to see some changes.

1) TO's and warnings reset after a set period of time... say, one year.  People DO (sometimes) change.  Perhaps it's when their situation and needs change.  Perhaps it's when they realize how much they've lost by being prevented from posting for 6 months, but I think we can see changes in members posting behavior.

2) Perhaps there would need to be less leniency in issuing them, too.  Examples:  When a PM that was clearly not intended for public viewing is posted, that would result in a warning.  Warnings should be given publicly so others, mainly newer members, will know what is not acceptable.   

3) After warnings and the 7- and 30-day TO's, a 6-month TO would follow.  After 6 months, the member would be allowed to begin posting.  At this point, there would be no warnings for 'infractions'.  There would only be 7- and 30-day TO's followed by another 6-month TO.

4) Thread locks and warnings - I'd like to see moderators send a PM requesting that a offending post be edited.  Generally, the poster is still online and will receive the warning.  If the post isn't edited in some set period, a warning or other disciplinary action would then be issued.

5) Permanent bans - These would be reserved for members who post to disrupt, sock puppets, etc.  It's obvious these members have no intent on participating, only causing problems. 

It is important that people feel comfortable and safe posting here.  Many folks lurk and read the forums long before they join and actually start posting.  If we turn them off from the beginning, while they're still 'testing the waters', how likely are they to return and participate?  On the other hand, we don't want to lose valuable members whose input and support are an important part of these forums.  By implementing something like what I've suggested above, I don't see us having much to lose but possibly a lot to gain.

David

(second attempt at posting this.  The first time it disappeared)
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 emeraldize

  • Member
  • Posts: 3,335
Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #105 on: September 14, 2008, 03:46:16 PM »
I could give a flying fuck what big pharma thinks about these forums -- feel free to send the URL of this post to the heads of their HIV marketing divisions -- I've met them all, and they won't be surprised I said this -- trust me. 

Big pharma is thrilled such a site exists and for reasons aside from their own bottomlines.

Offline emeraldize

  • Member
  • Posts: 3,335
Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #106 on: September 14, 2008, 04:02:34 PM »
Ideally, there would be no need for moderators ('cept to filter out the riff-raff that come here to disrupt the forums, sock puppets, denialists, etc).  Since we do appear to need moderators and some method for them to enforce the forum rules and policies, I'd like to see some changes.

Edited to add: In order to make such a revamp of rules fair, then a slate wiping as Iggy suggested (I think) in an earlier post would be appropriate and invite back all of those members who've been banned (save for those that have been detailed as not belonging...denialists, snakeoil folks, etc.). Let everyone start anew with new rules in place.

1) TO's and warnings reset after a set period of time... say, one year.  People DO (sometimes) change.  Perhaps it's when their situation and needs change.  Perhaps it's when they realize how much they've lost by being prevented from posting for 6 months, but I think we can see changes in members posting behavior.

2) Perhaps there would need to be less leniency in issuing them, too.  Examples:  When a PM that was clearly not intended for public viewing is posted, that would result in a warning.  Warnings should be given publicly so others, mainly newer members, will know what is not acceptable.   

3) After warnings and the 7- and 30-day TO's, a 6-month TO would follow.  After 6 months, the member would be allowed to begin posting.  At this point, there would be no warnings for 'infractions'.  There would only be 7- and 30-day TO's followed by another 6-month TO. Edited to add:These would not be posted publicly.

4) Thread locks and warnings - I'd like to see moderators send a PM requesting that a offending post be edited.  Generally, the poster is still online and will receive the warning.  If the post isn't edited in some set period, a warning or other disciplinary action would then be issued. Edited to add:This one could be difficult to enforce because the poster could post and dash off for breakfast or out of town for days. Is there a way to put an individual post in limbo, or mask it, until the poster's communicated with a mod about it?

5) Permanent bans - These would be reserved for members who post to disrupt, sock puppets, etc.  It's obvious these members have no intent on participating, only causing problems. 

It is important that people feel comfortable and safe posting here.  Many folks lurk and read the forums long before they join and actually start posting.  If we turn them off from the beginning, while they're still 'testing the waters', how likely are they to return and participate?  On the other hand, we don't want to lose valuable members whose input and support are an important part of these forums.  By implementing something like what I've suggested above, I don't see us having much to lose but possibly a lot to gain.

David



Offline keyite

  • Member
  • Posts: 514
Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #107 on: September 14, 2008, 04:16:06 PM »
It is important that people feel comfortable and safe posting here.

For me that remains the overriding concern. I accept that the benefit of the doubt needs to be acknowledged by having one or more 6 or 12 month TOs, but I think the possibility of a perma ban needs to be retained even for established members, i.e. when mods determine, at their discretion, that there is no hope left of modified behaviour. A line has to be drawn somewhere. To really get the participation from less strong members I think it's essential on a psychological level that they can trust that people they experience as persistently abusive or bullying won't be returning - ever.

If behaviour is indeed modified then I can see no particular need for a reset, and certainly not after such a short time as one year.

Offline Desertguy

  • Member
  • Posts: 183
Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #108 on: September 14, 2008, 05:10:02 PM »
I think that we all need to try to remember when we all 1st found out that we were HIV+.
I was scared shitless, was a total mess.  I didn't know where to turn, no one to talk too, thought I was going to die within a week!!!

I found this site and was able to ask and read lots of post that helped me out.  Yes Ann I did make the mistake and posted on the Woman's Forum 7 paid for it also.

In several of my postings I was treated with sarcasm, and like I was a stupid retard because I was asking what they thought were stupid questions.

It was not just from the person in question on this thread but there were and are others here that like to treat people bad.  I think it helps there ego or something.

We need to remember what this site is for!!  I thought it was for getting support and questions answered from our peers and long term survivors!!   Being able to communicate with others that are in the same situation as all.  We never ask for HIV but we all have it and need to show commpassion to the others on this site.

I am approaching my 1 year anniversary of being diagnosed with HIV and still scared and need support.  I don't visit this site as much as I used to because of the subject we are talking about now.

We really need to think of the new members and how they feel and why they are on this site asking questions and help.

This site has many people that are full of knowledge & great advice & compassion for others.  I have appreciated the help & advice I have gotten from others but have not appreciated the sarcasm that some have.

This is a great site & I hope that it stays that way if you are a new member hang in there & get Thru the sarcasm that some give.

Dennis


Offline LordBerners

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  • Posts: 415
Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #109 on: September 14, 2008, 05:36:22 PM »
I must say that the existence of the banning policy inhibits me greatly from commenting on same.  However, I have summoned the courage to do so, come what may.

I have generally found in my lengthy career of internet participation that long term contributors banned on internet forums are usually some of the most interesting.  Also I have read in numerous postings in this thread that one goal we share on this forum is to 'get to know' each other, and to build relationships.  It is difficult to see how we can really get to know each others' personalities if we are limited to platitudes, pablum, and a strict orthodoxy.  

I realize the import of insisting that people treat one another decently and with respect, but I think it is easy to underestimate what is lost through the inevitable chilling effect.  Given that most forums have an 'ignore' feature, I would suggest that this might be adequate to guard the sensitivities of the milquetoasts without losing the valuable contributions of the acerbic.

« Last Edit: September 14, 2008, 06:09:30 PM by LordBerners »
Please, just call me Berners.. or Baron.

Offline bocker3

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #110 on: September 14, 2008, 05:39:50 PM »
Wow.  Just...  wow.

Do you guys really think I think like that?  Do you really think I'm worrying about Gilead and GSK when all the moderators are IMing back and forth trying to make these decisions?

I could give a flying fuck what big pharma thinks about these forums -- feel free to send the URL of this post to the heads of their HIV marketing divisions -- I've met them all, and they won't be surprised I said this -- trust me. 

These forums make me feel proud each and every day.  The fact that I had a hand in building them, along with many others (including many long-term members, who I consider partners in this effort), fills me with pride.  I know the other mods feel the same way.

I'm sorry for the highjack, but I just can't let statements like this slide, lest others start to think there's some truth to them. 

You really don't know me, Bucko.  I have never questioned your motives here.  Please stop questioning mine.  I'm guessing they are actually the same.
Peter-
I never intended my comment to reflect on you in ANY WAY.  I apologize for causing you that discomfort.  Frankly, I was simply trying to gather as many points as I could to try and let folks understand why (in my opinion) this can't be a "Wild Wild West" sort of site.  On reflection, the corporate sponsor point probably could have been left out.
This site has been very important in my adjusting to living with this virus -- I simply can't thank you enough for it.
As I hope I've made clear through this thread -- I have much respect for all the moderators and think that you all do a great job here -- a job that I would not want!

Again -- I'm sorry for any misunderstanding.

Mike
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Offline Peter Staley

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #111 on: September 14, 2008, 06:02:43 PM »
Mike -- no problem.  Frankly, I'm a little embarrassed now as I reread my post.  I was angry, and sort of overreacted.

We're good.  Same with Bucko.  We're all good.

xoxo

Peter

Offline WellHungarian

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #112 on: September 14, 2008, 06:04:36 PM »
Well, I've seen people on this site banned for less so I have to say that this truly comes as no suprise.  I'm glad to see though that the moderators went ahead and did the appropriate thing in this situation rather than continuing to make exceptions for a prolific poster with something of a fan base on this here messaging board.

Offline thunter34

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #113 on: September 14, 2008, 06:16:30 PM »
Well, I've seen people on this site banned for less so I have to say that this truly comes as no suprise.  I'm glad to see though that the moderators went ahead and did the appropriate thing in this situation rather than continuing to make exceptions for a prolific poster with something of a fan base on this here messaging board.

Yeah, I kinda gathered that based on this post yesterday:

http://forums.poz.com/index.php?topic=23080.msg293569#msg293569

and your "one person I don't like....ha, ha, ha" sig line.

-thunter34

(who dutifully stayed out of this thread all this time...and who now backs right back out of it)
« Last Edit: September 14, 2008, 06:19:13 PM by thunter34 »
AIDS isn't for sissies.

Offline Dachshund

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #114 on: September 14, 2008, 06:35:36 PM »
Well, I've seen people on this site banned for less so I have to say that this truly comes as no suprise.  I'm glad to see though that the moderators went ahead and did the appropriate thing in this situation rather than continuing to make exceptions for a prolific poster with something of a fan base on this here messaging board.

Was I dreaming, or didn't Tim Horn lock this thread? I could have sworn he did. 

Offline Miss Philicia

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #115 on: September 14, 2008, 06:36:22 PM »
Yeah, I kinda gathered that based on this post yesterday:

http://forums.poz.com/index.php?topic=23080.msg293569#msg293569

and your "one person I don't like....ha, ha, ha" sig line.

-thunter34

(who dutifully stayed out of this thread all this time...and who now backs right back out of it)

definitely confirms some suspicions many have had, that's for sure
"I’ve slept with enough men to know that I’m not gay"

Offline RAB

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #116 on: September 14, 2008, 06:40:52 PM »
I think there has been two entirely different conversations going on here.  One disguised within the other.

Peter, while I respect your repeated attempts to encourage members to not comment on the most recent ban, but instead focus on the larger discussion of the policies, let's be honest. 

This discussion wouldn't be happening otherwise.  It's naive to assume otherwise.

There has been (and I suspect will continue to be) a lot of emotion invested in the posts of members on both sides of this issue.  Simply because of the intensity of the current moment.

Neither side is absolutely right or wrong.

Personally, I support David NC's suggestion. 

It allows for a "meaningful" way for dealing with repeated behaviour that some/few/many/none (?) have found offputting.  It also doesn't close the door to the reemergence of banned members who obviously have devoted friends or grateful recipients, and respects the input that has been a significant part of these forums.  While neither side will be ultimately happy with whatever the moderators decide to do, David's options offers a compromise that I think could help calm the current storm.

The  only other possibility I can offer, assuming no immediate announcement, is that you put any decision on hold for a couple of weeks.  Giving time for emotions to settle down, giving time for a thoughtful decision based upon reflection of what the moderators feel is best, not based upon the intensity of the moment. Believe me, when I've made decisions in my life based upon the intense pressure of the moment, it has almost always come back to haunt me. 

This just needs to be moved  forward in as calm and rational manner as possible.

RAB

Edit to add:  I'm as guilty as any other member here of reacting to the emotion of the moment. I think it's part of being human. 



« Last Edit: September 14, 2008, 07:09:05 PM by RAB »

Offline Peter Staley

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #117 on: September 14, 2008, 07:37:45 PM »
Well, I've seen people on this site banned for less so I have to say that this truly comes as no suprise.  I'm glad to see though that the moderators went ahead and did the appropriate thing in this situation rather than continuing to make exceptions for a prolific poster with something of a fan base on this here messaging board.

Because of this, his sig line (now deleted), and another thread he started, WellHungarian has been given a 7 day Time Out.

Offline Assurbanipal

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #118 on: September 14, 2008, 08:07:15 PM »
"No man is an island, entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main. If a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe is the less, as well as if a promontory were, as well as if a manor of thy friend's or of thine own were. Any man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind; and therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee..."    John Donne, Meditations upon Emergent Occasions 1624

For the record, the original post was initiated by the banning of an additional member, not by the specific member banned.





It is counterproductive for this thread to generate additional bans, so please focus comments on whether and how you think the policy should be changed, rather than on how it is enforced, the reason the thread was posted etc.  

(edit typos not caught by spell check)
« Last Edit: September 14, 2008, 08:08:57 PM by 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 Jacques

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #119 on: September 14, 2008, 11:15:56 PM »
For those that are relatively new to the forums you need to know that when a banning does happen it's not from one or two warnings that you have seen in the public forums. Most warnings are given in PMs to the member which none of you actually see. What you actually see is the final result of a member not heeding the warnings that have been given. And yes, if one is banned it's because we didn't heed the warnings. I consider Matty as a very good friend of mine and yes I'll miss him, like I do Tim, but we all know if we don't following the policies and guidelines lines what the out come will be. Most of the members that have been here for years can remember we were the ones that asked for the policies and guidelines because the forums were way out of control. Now that the policies are in place we all need to abide by them.

The voice of the reason.


thanks to the the moderators for their good job.

Jacques
Jacques
Living positively since 1987
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Offline Robert

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #120 on: September 15, 2008, 01:34:33 AM »
The voice of the reason.


thanks to the the moderators for their good job.

Jacques

I second both thoughts (jacques' and Rod's)
« Last Edit: September 15, 2008, 01:36:18 AM by Robert »
..........

Offline komnaes

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #121 on: September 15, 2008, 05:38:35 AM »
Maybe AM is just following the trend of our modern society in general, in which individuals' sensibilities and feelings have to be protected and respected at all costs. Too much freedom leads to chaos and feelings being hurt, so lets make some rules to penalize those who refuse to adhere to this ground rule.

And after reading some of the posts here the image of Helen Lovejoy (from the Simpsons) keeps popping up in my brain..



Who can say no to such simple and reasonable request as to asking people to adhere the rules and be civilize? Like who can say no to protect our children from harm, while you stand on such moral high ground.

The mods have a thankless task and just for that you have my complete respect. But just think for a moment the signal this ban is sending out? And just look at the comments from one of those who is insisting nothing short of a total ban for the sake of keeping order:

Quote
If behaviour is indeed modified then I can see no particular need for a reset, and certainly not after such a short time as one year.

I won't say more on how I feel about this statement because it will definitely come off as being vindictive to them.
Aug 07 Diagnosed
Oct 07 CD4=446(19%) Feb 08 CD4=421(19%)
Jun 08 CD4=325(22%) Jul 08 CD4=301(18%)
Sep 08 CD4=257/VL=75,000 Oct 08 CD4=347(16%)
Dec 08 CD4=270(16%)
Jan 09 CD4=246(13%)/VL=10,000
Feb 09 CD4=233(15%)/VL=13,000
Started meds Sustiva/Epzicom
May 09 CD4=333(24%)/VL=650
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Nov 09 CD4=437(26%)/VL=UD
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June 10 CD4=517 (28%)/VL=UD
Sept 10 CD4=687 (31%)/VL=UD
Jan 11 CD4=557 (30%)/VL=UD
April 11 CD4=569 (32%)/VL=UD
Switched to Epizcom, Reyataz and Norvir
(Interrupted for 2 months with only Epizcom & Reyataz)
July 11 CD=520 (28%)/VL=UD
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April 12 CD=609 (28%)/VL=UD(<20)
Aug 12 CD=657 (29%)/VL=UD(<20)
Dec 12 CD=532 (31%)/VL=UD(<20)
May 13 CD=567 (31%)/VL=UD(<20)
Jan 14 CD=521 (21%)/VL=UD(<50)

Offline joemutt

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #122 on: September 15, 2008, 09:31:57 AM »
This place should feel safe for people searching for help and not be the domain of the wisecracking few.

Offline Dachshund

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #123 on: September 15, 2008, 09:38:03 AM »
One man's wisecrack is another man's wisdom.

Offline SteveA

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #124 on: September 15, 2008, 10:21:04 AM »
This place should feel safe for people searching for help and not be the domain of the wisecracking few.

I agree completely! Unfortunately I think you're going to be drowned out by the wise crackers here.

Offline David_CA

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #125 on: September 15, 2008, 10:23:48 AM »
Guys, I believe the point of this thread is the ban / TO policy in general.  FOCUS
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Offline allopathicholistic

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #126 on: September 15, 2008, 10:25:06 AM »
Guys, I believe the point of this thread is the ban / TO policy in general.  FOCUS

Alrighty then!

Here I go:

I just wanna say to anyone reading this that it takes a fast minute to temper one's words and tone. Example: Just the other day I had crossed the rudeness line and a Moderator sent me a "PM" giving me a piece of his mind.

So I said to myself:

Self, do you think this PM is because people are reporting me? (Yeah) And do you think it's a good idea to take a few deep breaths and temper your point while maintaining your point? (Yeah) And do you think it's a courtesy to get a "raw" PM from the Moderators who genuinely work hard to see both points of view? (Absolutely yes!)

*** So that's why Rod's post helped open my eyes. ***

At this point I think David NC's idea is the middle ground everyone is hoping for. although some of it makes me think of "duplication of effort" (read = more work for the Moderators) if 100% clean slates are awarded to the banned. How about 90% clean slates for the banned?? heck, they've received plenty enough warnings to know what's going to trigger a warning.

So in my interpretation of David's post, a clean slate would look like this:

Warning,
7-day timeout,
Warning,
30-day timeout,
Warning,
6-month timeout,
7-day timeout,
30-day timeout,
6-month timeout,
6-month timeout,
6-month timeout, (repeats)


As for the 90% clean slate:

7-day timeout,
30-day timeout,
6-month timeout,
7-day timeout,
30-day timeout,
6-month timeout,
6-month timeout,
6-month timeout, (repeats)
(same as above minus the warnings)(the ejector seat idea)

And to Shaun. Of all the posts you've written so far, your most recent one has the most clarity. Thanks. I'm not in agreement with you.
« Last Edit: September 15, 2008, 10:37:38 AM by allopathicholistic »

Offline sharkdiver

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #127 on: September 15, 2008, 10:29:17 AM »
I agree completely! Unfortunately I think you're going to be drowned out by the wise crackers here.

AIDS is HARSH and still DEADLY.  Worrying about someone saying something that hurts my feelings is the LEAST OF MY WORRIES.

There is always the IGNORE BUTTON.


Sharkie

Offline thunter34

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #128 on: September 15, 2008, 10:30:49 AM »
I agree completely! Unfortunately I think you're going to be drowned out by the wise crackers here.

Why not just stick to using the Ignore button?

http://forums.poz.com/index.php?topic=17051.msg216490#msg216490

PLEASE stick to topic.

Ahem.

Sorry but I was responding to a post asking for specific evidence and I gave it. It won't happen again.

« Last Edit: September 15, 2008, 10:33:37 AM by thunter34 »
AIDS isn't for sissies.

Offline Peter Staley

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #129 on: September 15, 2008, 10:35:27 AM »
Thanks for getting this back on focus, David and AH.

I don't want to sound like I'm stifling the suggestions here, but please realize any new system has to be simple, if only because it's already hard for the mods to keep track of all the TOs and bans.

At this point, I'd be hard pressed to consider a clean-slate system.  However, the actual mechanics of a 6-month repetitive TO, vs. a permaban, and WHO each of these would apply to (when are permabans still used?), would all have to be considered.

Offline Florida69

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #130 on: September 15, 2008, 10:47:13 AM »
These is a really long thread, and please forgive me for not reading everyone’s post, as it is very time consuming and exhausting.   Most of the time, my time is limited so my responses are quick and to the point.  I do not mean to disrespect anyone by not reading all of this thread, but I am sure before the day is over, I will go back and read it.  I am in agreement that this should not be an argument thread, but unfortunately the tide is moving that way, I have seen other members banned and no one came to their defense and their voices where silenced.  I choose to be a member of this forum, and I also choose to follow the policies that manage the forum.  In my opinion the regulations are set up in this forum for a reason, to govern the forum as a whole, and to show respect and admiration for those that are coming here for support for the first time.  When you are infected or affected by anything, at first you do feel like a victim, it takes some time to be able to handle life stresses, much less the adding more anxiety to an already touchy life altering experience by people belittling you from what brought you here in the first place in search of a crutch to hold yourself up while you are healing.  Once you own it you can remove the victim status and become a champion of your own life.  If this would have been my first source for support, I do not know what I would have done.  Maybe it would have been a better experience for me, but maybe it would want to make me drink Clorox, I can not say, as this was not my first online support forum.  Although I do not agree with a person getting a permanent ban, but following the rules is imperative on this forum.  When I first joined this forum, I was invited by friends I had met in other support forums on the net.  This was their forum of choice, and I respect that, and this is normally where I can find them, and I am very grateful for this forum, being that consistent place where I can catch up with them and share my thoughts, feelings and struggles with them.  I have met some great friends here, but I have also found my fair share of foes here as well, of course I love chatting up my friends, and I enjoy not having to read, by using the ignore function of those that have spoken ill will of me and have made malicious lies about my postings in other forums.  Those are their issues and not mine; I can only handle my own.  I have suggested this forum to others, and a couple responses have been that this is a closed forum, and honestly I can not disagree. 

However, I am not a person that can be bullied by anyone, and I have never been one to hide from a fight, coming to terms with my status is just proof that I do not easily admit defeat.  What this forum has made me is tougher, against adversity and corruption that exists even here, whether I like it or not.  What we all must do is accept what has happened and move on; those voices are silent only here.  Those folks that have been banned from this site, but they still have the love, admiration and support of their true friends.  I am sure that if you want to stay in touch with them there are other means, which do not involve this particular forum.  Take care, 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 komnaes

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #131 on: September 15, 2008, 11:07:04 AM »
Quote
However, the actual mechanics of a 6-month repetitive TO, vs. a permaban, and WHO each of these would apply to (when are permabans still used?), would all have to be considered.

I would definitely plead the mods to consider the options of 6-month ban in lieu of a perma-ban, and while you guys are at it please also consider applying it retroactively if (and only if) the perma-ban is lifted.
Aug 07 Diagnosed
Oct 07 CD4=446(19%) Feb 08 CD4=421(19%)
Jun 08 CD4=325(22%) Jul 08 CD4=301(18%)
Sep 08 CD4=257/VL=75,000 Oct 08 CD4=347(16%)
Dec 08 CD4=270(16%)
Jan 09 CD4=246(13%)/VL=10,000
Feb 09 CD4=233(15%)/VL=13,000
Started meds Sustiva/Epzicom
May 09 CD4=333(24%)/VL=650
Aug 09 CD4=346(24%)/VL=UD
Nov 09 CD4=437(26%)/VL=UD
Feb 10 CD4=471(31%)/VL=UD
June 10 CD4=517 (28%)/VL=UD
Sept 10 CD4=687 (31%)/VL=UD
Jan 11 CD4=557 (30%)/VL=UD
April 11 CD4=569 (32%)/VL=UD
Switched to Epizcom, Reyataz and Norvir
(Interrupted for 2 months with only Epizcom & Reyataz)
July 11 CD=520 (28%)/VL=UD
Oct 11 CD=771 (31%)/VL=UD(<30)
April 12 CD=609 (28%)/VL=UD(<20)
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Dec 12 CD=532 (31%)/VL=UD(<20)
May 13 CD=567 (31%)/VL=UD(<20)
Jan 14 CD=521 (21%)/VL=UD(<50)

Offline Dachshund

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #132 on: September 15, 2008, 11:14:18 AM »
Get your licks in while you can guys. I'm sorry, but I just can't let people continue to post accusations without confronting them. I'm sorry for the hijack Peter, but like you I get pissed when people continue to suggest things that just aren't true. Especially when two of the most vehement accusers posting in this thread invited others to join another forum trashing AIDSMEDS. Quit trying to settle old scores fellas by hiding behind this thread. It's transparent and everyone knows it.

Once again, sorry for the hijack.

Offline Jeff G

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #133 on: September 15, 2008, 11:15:30 AM »
I would definitely plead the mods to consider the options of 6-month ban in lieu of a perma-ban, and while you guys are at it please also consider applying it retroactively if (and only if) the perma-ban is lifted.

This sums up how I feel nicely .  
« Last Edit: September 15, 2008, 11:17:37 AM by jg1962 »

Offline Miss Philicia

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #134 on: September 15, 2008, 11:33:08 AM »

Self, do you think this PM is because people are reporting me? (Yeah)

Incorrect assessment if you're implying that was me.
"I’ve slept with enough men to know that I’m not gay"

Offline woodshere

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #135 on: September 15, 2008, 11:36:05 AM »
If I am reading David's suggestion correctly the basic change in the current policy would be to do away with a permanent ban and add 6 mth TO level.  After reaching that level and serving the 6mt TO if an offense to the policy occurs again that that person would just receive another 6mt TO rather than a permanent ban.  If that is the jest of the suggestion, then I would agree.  Of course eventually someone will receive a 6mth TO and this will all be revisited.  Which I guess isn't such a bad thing, as all policies need to be flexible enough to be changed as needed.  

I do believe a level of trust should be given to moderators of any type of online forum or group to determine how best to follow policies.  Based on comments made by moderators in this thread decisions to issue a ban are not entered into lightly or individually but as a group.  I would think that same framework would be used in issuing a 6mt TO.  If only one person made such serious decisions I would have a problem, but I think a group of moderators would be able to have a discussion in which different views are brought to the table and then reach a decision that is best for the whole.  
"Let us give pubicity to HV/AIDS and not hide it..." "One of the things destroying people with AIDS is the stigma we attach to it."   Nelson Mandela

Offline Miss Philicia

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #136 on: September 15, 2008, 11:42:51 AM »

I don't want to sound like I'm stifling the suggestions here, but please realize any new system has to be simple, if only because it's already hard for the mods to keep track of all the TOs and bans.

At this point, I'd be hard pressed to consider a clean-slate system.  However, the actual mechanics of a 6-month repetitive TO, vs. a permaban, and WHO each of these would apply to (when are permabans still used?), would all have to be considered.

I don't think it would be hard -- not many folks get to that point.  Most that do are sockpuppets/trolls who wouldn't qualify anyway.  And I even wonder how many 6-month potential banned personalities would return.

I'd also like to submit that there is value in resolving this.  We should all keep in mind that HIV is going to be around for a LOOOOOOOONG time, so then so will this board.  Probably longer than anyone here was actually considering when they first formulated these banning rules.  Many here seem to think "Oh, the internet is a big place so the perma-banned can just go elsewhere"  Well, actually in the case of HIV specific web boards it ain't so big.

What I'd really like to ask people to do (and I shouldn't have to ask this) but please separate yourself from the "MtD factor" and picture either yourself or someone you're close to here getting permanently banned, and imagine that it's because they went on some new anti-depressant or something and went a bit crazy.  The "6-month" repeated T.O. proposal, as I previously stated, is meant to prompt the individual into seeking professional "real world" help. 
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Offline Miss Philicia

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #137 on: September 15, 2008, 11:45:59 AM »
Although I do not agree with a person getting a permanent ban, but following the rules is imperative on this forum. 

I don't understand this line of reasoning, which has been put forward by several board members.  In the real world laws get modified or scrapped ALL THE TIME if it's shown they were not well considered in the first place, by consensus.
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Offline Miss Philicia

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #138 on: September 15, 2008, 11:47:12 AM »
If I am reading David's suggestion correctly the basic change in the current policy would be to do away with a permanent ban and add 6 mth TO level.  

PLEASE NOTE: I suggested this first, and Miss_NC repeated it.  I demand proper credit and recognition :)

Of course eventually someone will receive a 6mth TO and this will all be revisited.  Which I guess isn't such a bad thing, as all policies need to be flexible enough to be changed as needed. 

I doubt it would be raised again.  The issue isn't the particulars of a banning, it's the issue of PERMANENTLY banning anyone (with the exception of sockpuppets/trolls).

Basically the 6-months is like going to jail.  What folks are saying is that in the context of HIV there should not be an equivalent of death row.  Jailed aidsmeds members should do their time, but then be released but still be on parole.  If they screw up when they're on parole, they go back in the slammer for another 6-months.  No appeals.
« Last Edit: September 15, 2008, 12:00:19 PM by philly267 »
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Offline woodshere

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #139 on: September 15, 2008, 11:52:17 AM »
I would definitely plead the mods to consider the options of 6-month ban in lieu of a perma-ban, and while you guys are at it please also consider applying it retroactively if (and only if) the perma-ban is lifted.

I am going to have to disagree on this one.  The mods at the time they issued any type of ban followed procedures set forth at that time.  If the policies change I don't think it is appropriate to go back and say "Well you didn't observe previous policies, we have changed them and now want to offer you the opportunity to come back provided you follow the new policy."  I am all for giving people a second chance as well as a firm believer that people can change (no matter how often I have been proven wrong), but I believe that if a you allow some to come back then you need to allow all to come back.  If you believe a certain person that has been banned deserves a second chance or that a banned individual can change and follow new policies, then doesn't that same belief hold true for all banned members regardless of what they were banned for?
"Let us give pubicity to HV/AIDS and not hide it..." "One of the things destroying people with AIDS is the stigma we attach to it."   Nelson Mandela

Offline SteveA

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #140 on: September 15, 2008, 11:55:48 AM »
What I'd really like to ask people to do (and I shouldn't have to ask this) but please separate yourself from the "MtD factor" and picture either yourself or someone you're close to here getting permanently banned, and imagine that it's because they went on some new anti-depressant or something and went a bit crazy.  The "6-month" repeated T.O. proposal, as I previously stated, is meant to prompt the individual into seeking professional "real world" help. 

Even not putting MtD aside I have not argued to keep the permaban thank you very much. Some people here who keep spouting lies however need to think before they type. My post that was called "Out of Bounds" wasn't called "Out of Line" and when I asked Peter in a PM if I should edit any part out I got no reply so I can only assume that because it happened and was true he saw no need for it to be edited out. Anyone who thinks I'm lying about the occurrence can ask Jan who had the offender edit out my personal information from his postings.

As for the second chance thing, if, and that's a BIG IF, anyone get's a second chance from PermaBan,, they should still be required to wait out the 6 month TO period of the new policy. Letting them just come right back would show that the policy meant nothing to begin with.

Offline Peter Staley

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #141 on: September 15, 2008, 11:58:14 AM »
Steve -- consider yourself warned.  Don't post in this thread again.

Peter

Offline emeraldize

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #142 on: September 15, 2008, 11:58:33 AM »
Edited to add: In order to make such a revamp of rules fair, then a slate wiping as Iggy suggested (I think) in an earlier post would be appropriate and invite back all of those members who've been banned (save for those that have been detailed as not belonging...denialists, snakeoil folks, etc.). Let everyone start anew with new rules in place.

Regarding the recordkeeping of warnings and TOs, etc. why not set up a simple excel sheet (accessible to all Mods) with column headers of the offenses and names running down the sides? While I have no way of knowing how many warnings are handed out privately via PM to date, nor sum total of bans for that matter, I can't believe there are that many people who end up requiring such recording. One shared form (folks do this all the time in business) becomes the tally board and simplifies it.

Offline woodshere

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #143 on: September 15, 2008, 12:03:21 PM »
PLEASE NOTE: I suggested this first, and Miss_NC repeated it.  I demand proper credit and recognition :)

So given.  It's a long thread that I have spent all morning at work reading since I have been without power at my home for the past 24 hrs thanks to Hurricane Ike's winds.  
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Offline David_CA

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #144 on: September 15, 2008, 12:04:30 PM »
PLEASE NOTE: I suggested this first, and Miss_NC repeated it.  I demand proper credit and recognition :)

Sometimes it's not how much one speaks but how one says it that makes the difference.   :P

I agree that it shouldn't be all that difficult to figure out who to unban, if we get to that point.  Members can email the moderators and ask to be allowed to return.  If they're still interested in these forums, they will likely read this or another thread and know the procedure for requesting reinstatement.  No system is perfect, and I'm sure some folks will not know that there's a possibility of returning.  However, as it is now, nobody has that possibility.

I also don't see how it can be much more difficult to keep track of things if we change than it is now.  Once somebody receives a 6-month TO, I'm sure all the other moderators will know about it.  From then on, this individual receives 6-month TO's. 

If we don't go to 6-month TO's instead of perma-bans, I would again suggest that members' records be wiped clean of warnings yearly.  It's easy to post something that generates a warning, especially for somebody who's going through a particularly rough time, for example. 

David
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Offline Assurbanipal

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #145 on: September 15, 2008, 12:05:29 PM »
I am going to have to disagree on this one.  The mods at the time they issued any type of ban followed procedures set forth at that time.  If the policies change I don't think it is appropriate to go back and say "Well you didn't observe previous policies, we have changed them and now want to offer you the opportunity to come back provided you follow the new policy."  I am all for giving people a second chance as well as a firm believer that people can change (no matter how often I have been proven wrong), but I believe that if a you allow some to come back then you need to allow all to come back.  If you believe a certain person that has been banned deserves a second chance or that a banned individual can change and follow new policies, then doesn't that same belief hold true for all banned members regardless of what they were banned for?

I think that the proposal is to change the policy only for those that were not denialists, sock puppets, trolls etc.  Since the policy would not change for them,  why should they be offered an opportunity to return?  

It simply says we are refining the initial policy and for those who would have been differently affected had the new policy been in place we are offering (and many of us are hoping) for them to return.  People wound up in the "banned" bucket for different reasons, some of which we now believe should be rethought , but others we all (so far) agree should have been banned.  Basically we are potentially changing our thinking around what constitutes "appropriate" grounds for banning -- fairness does not require that those who were appropriately banned be returned under both definitions of "appropriate", only those where we would not now consider the grounds appropriate.

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2010 VL UD CD4 573-680 26.1% - 30.9% 12/10 VL 20
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Offline Miss Philicia

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #146 on: September 15, 2008, 12:09:12 PM »

If we don't go to 6-month TO's instead of perma-bans, I would again suggest that members' records be wiped clean of warnings yearly.  It's easy to post something that generates a warning, especially for somebody who's going through a particularly rough time, for example. 

David

I thought that happened already.  Is that not the case?
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Offline Florida69

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #147 on: September 15, 2008, 12:14:04 PM »
Edited to add: In order to make such a revamp of rules fair, then a slate wiping as Iggy suggested (I think) in an earlier post would be appropriate and invite back all of those members who've been banned (save for those that have been detailed as not belonging...denialists, snakeoil folks, etc.). Let everyone start anew with new rules in place.


I have to say that I agree, if one person gets a second chance then everyone should be invited back under the new rules and guidelines.  D
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Offline thunter34

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #148 on: September 15, 2008, 12:21:20 PM »
I have to say that I agree, if one person gets a second chance then everyone should be invited back under the new rules and guidelines.  D

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Offline Dachshund

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #149 on: September 15, 2008, 12:25:29 PM »
Even though I admire and love some of the banned, I'm not sure a blanket amnesty would be wise. I could be convinced otherwise.

Offline Tim Horn

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #150 on: September 15, 2008, 12:27:54 PM »
I would definitely plead the mods to consider the options of 6-month ban in lieu of a perma-ban, and while you guys are at it please also consider applying it retroactively if (and only if) the perma-ban is lifted.

If a change to our current ban policy is made, it will be enacted retroactively. Do keep in mind, however, that not everyone will be given a reprieve -- we will be discussing the various circumstances and their outcomes.

I do want everyone to keep something in mind -- what goes on publicly, in the Forums, doesn't often reflect what goes on behind the scenes. For example, we sometimes have to deal with extremely combative, harrassing -- and sometimes threatening -- behavior from members, including those who have been warned or given a TO. (No, I am not speaking of any one person in particular.) This is -- and always will be -- absolutely forbidden and immediate grounds for a ban. Please understand that not every situation is a cut-and-dry as is being described here.

Tim Horn  

Offline Miss Philicia

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #151 on: September 15, 2008, 12:35:34 PM »
Clearly nobody should be allowed to return that didn't respect their time outs -- as in the rather large group of banned individuals who attempted to immediately create a new user name either with or without a proxy server IP.  And of course, it should be clear that denialists and such sorts are not allowed to return.

There have also been some cases of underage sexual predator issues that should be addressed.
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Offline Tim Horn

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #152 on: September 15, 2008, 12:38:09 PM »
There have also been some cases of underage sexual predator issues that should be addressed.

And it has been... necessarily in the quietest manner possible. Again, there are some situations that arise behind the scenes that cannot, nor should not, be a matter of public debate or even public record.
« Last Edit: September 15, 2008, 12:40:12 PM by Tim Horn »

Offline Peter Staley

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #153 on: September 15, 2008, 12:42:13 PM »
I think that the proposal is to change the policy only for those that were not denialists, sock puppets, trolls etc.  Since the policy would not change for them,  why should they be offered an opportunity to return?  

It simply says we are refining the initial policy and for those who would have been differently affected had the new policy been in place we are offering (and many of us are hoping) for them to return.  People wound up in the "banned" bucket for different reasons, some of which we now believe should be rethought , but others we all (so far) agree should have been banned.  Basically we are potentially changing our thinking around what constitutes "appropriate" grounds for banning -- fairness does not require that those who were appropriately banned be returned under both definitions of "appropriate", only those where we would not now consider the grounds appropriate.



Ahh -- now you're listening to the conversation going on in my head since this thread started!  Basically, all bannings are not alike, and there are some we could be talked into revisiting, and some we could not.

Yes, the quick bans of trolls and spammers and denialists are easy, but we've also banned some long-term members (LTMs) that we will not under any circumstances let back in.  For instance, some banned LTMs practically became stalkers to one or more moderators, and made our lives hell, in retaliation for their bans.  We don't advertise these situations, but they exist, and it's horrible when it happens.

We also have LTMs that were banned after we realized they were closet bigots of one sort or another, and typically they exposed even more of this bigotry in response to the ban (I've got lots of shocking emails still saved from these situations).  I would rather not let someone back in that called me a "fucking faggot," thank you very much.

I'm saying all this just to point out that I think ANY new policy must maintain discretion for the mods to issue permabans.  We still need this tool, for our own sanity (and yours).

This leaves one final category of banned LTRs -- those that got banned for constantly pissing-off a significant number of members (often to the point of us losing those members), simply by the way they interacted with members.  They don't fall into the categories I've listed above.  They weren't easy permabans for us -- they weren't easy calls.  They're not bigots, and they didn't go crazy on us after their bans or TOs.

So I want to keep the permaban, and I hope folks will agree there are times we need it.  But should we have another system for this last category?  That's the question on the table now.

And guess what, when looking at the list of our currently banned LTRs, almost all of them fall into the "there's-no-way-we're-letting-them-back-in" categories.  So with any new policy, we're actually talking about an extremely short list of possible reprieves (we've just started looking at the whole list, but it might only be two LTRs!).  [please don't use this post as a reason for listing any usernames for us to review -- I haven't, and this thread should continue to discuss policy, not specific members]

Just sayin.

I just noticed Tim posted something similar to what I was typing.  grrrr.  He always beats me to the punch.   ;)


Offline atlq

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #154 on: September 15, 2008, 01:01:59 PM »
Ahh...the sweet smell of a ripening consensus....no wait, that's Carpet Fresh!... ;D
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Offline Iggy

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #155 on: September 15, 2008, 01:05:06 PM »
In light of Peter's last post with further detailing of the categories of banned people, I would like to amend my earlier request for clean slates and allowing all banned to be able to return which I no longer support.

I'll stick with the idea of an additional 6 month and/or 12 month timeout penalty though.

Offline Assurbanipal

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #156 on: September 15, 2008, 01:08:29 PM »
Clearly nobody should be allowed to return that didn't respect their time outs -- as in the rather large group of banned individuals who attempted to immediately create a new user name either with or without a proxy server IP.  And of course, it should be clear that denialists and such sorts are not allowed to return.

There have also been some cases of underage sexual predator issues that should be addressed.

Why shouldn't those who didn't respect their timeouts be given a second chance after 6 months if they were not denialists, sock puppets, trolls etc.  ?  Presumably that means they had a lot to say? and they may have learned their lesson not to make up two identities.

(Note, I had typed up a long post suggesting we should talk about who the policy would apply to -- and then, voila   there were 4 posts talking about it ... I think I need to learn to type faster :))
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 manchesteruk

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #157 on: September 15, 2008, 01:11:34 PM »

So in my interpretation of David's post, a clean slate would look like this:

Warning,
7-day timeout,
Warning,
30-day timeout,
Warning,
6-month timeout,
7-day timeout,
30-day timeout,
6-month timeout,
6-month timeout,
6-month timeout, (repeats)


This seems like a fair solution to me.   A permanent ban for someone other than a troll, denialist etc seems too harsh to me.  You have to consider as well that a 6 month ban is a pretty harsh punishment.  Has a forum vote been considered on this at all?  The complexities of a new banning policy would be too difficult do in a single vote.  But maybe a vote could be taken on whether permanent bans should continue.  If the vote is against permanent bans the moderators could come up with a new policy after consulting the members of the forums.  I think it would be fair that way because it is the moderators who would have to enforce it.
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Offline Miss Philicia

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #158 on: September 15, 2008, 01:11:36 PM »
Why shouldn't those who didn't respect their timeouts be given a second chance after 6 months if they were not denialists, sock puppets, trolls etc.  ?  Presumably that means they had a lot to say? and they may have learned their lesson not to make up two identities.

Probably for the same reason that the moderators won't let back in someone who sent them abusive emails after a time out.  It's seen as abusive of the moderator's judgement, etc.
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Offline dad1216

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #159 on: September 15, 2008, 01:20:09 PM »
The rules here are very clear….you do something wrong and you get warned…keep it up and you get timed out , not just once but a few times…and if you still keep it up you get banned….pretty simple to me…if a person still causes trouble after all the warnings and time outs…what makes anyone think that a 6 month ban will straighten them out…they can just take the 6 months and plan their next attack…the biggest majority of people who break the rules will always break the rules…if that’s not true our jails and prisons would have no return inmates…the moderators here have a hard enough time doing their jobs…and it is very evident that they do not ban people just for the hell of it….now you want them to have to deal with those that make trouble over and over again…within time they will be doing nothing but chasing down those people and giving them another 6 months…over and over again….now granted there are some that will learn their lessons….but that number will be less than those that don’t….a person has no one but themselves to blame for being banned….they knew the rules…they broke the rules…now they must deal with the consequences…it’s life….do you think you can keep breaking the rules at work and only get fired for 6 months…or keep getting caught driving drunk and not lose your license for life…there are many people on here who have never even had a warning and have been here for years….apparently they understand the rules…and know how to abide by them…
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Offline Miss Philicia

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #160 on: September 15, 2008, 01:31:15 PM »
…if that’s not true our jails and prisons would have no return inmates…

You'll have a hard time convincing me that incarceration rates in the US are not excessive.  The same thing applies here, and only to a couple of individuals as the moderators just said.
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Offline newt

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #161 on: September 15, 2008, 01:37:06 PM »
As anyone who's had the misfortune to visit a chain bar will know, volume encourages conformity & mitigates against diversity.

In my experience the most annoying, most useful and most (HIV) experienced people are often in the crowd that values diversity, and sometimes this means rubbing chalk and cheese in a nutmeg grater.

The mods have to deal with the dust.  Good on yer folks for stepping up to the grater. It's not a nice job most of the time.

But cheese sauce with no cheese or nutmeg? hmmm

The benchmark for me would be not are new (old) people annoyed by Poster X per se, but on balance does the poster contributemore than they discommode (<< good word that), and especially does s/he bring particular knowledge and/or experience. Being annoyed when it's a question of personal style is just such a hard call.

I would be in favour of a sanction for said annoying people which included reducing people's posting rights to their own threads. ie they can't reply (therefore annoy) other people.

Furthermore, perhaps some kind of apology for due cause system. If your tripping off your head on Sustiva and get banned cos you dropped a tissue on someone's patent leather sandal, you should be excused with appropriate explanation (I say).

- matt
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Offline Assurbanipal

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #162 on: September 15, 2008, 01:42:58 PM »
Probably for the same reason that the moderators won't let back in someone who sent them abusive emails after a time out.  It's seen as abusive of the moderator's judgement, etc.

I hear ya ... But ...
- I think people posting here are sometimes under enormous short term pressures and illness burdens and that things can change dramatically in 6 months
- This is an online support group -- and (as some guy named philly267 pointed out first  :)), there's not a lot of other options on the internet for HIV support.  



I'd encourage any new policy to be as forgiving as possible to those who are living with the disease and have been contributing members of the community.  In fact, given the limited alternatives I'd argue for as broad and forgiving a policy as we can stomach.  After all, if you let the wrong person back in and they act up they can always be thrown back out. Letting someone back in is only on terms and conditions that are well understood and violation can be quickly disciplined. So what's the risk?

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Offline Miss Philicia

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #163 on: September 15, 2008, 01:48:59 PM »
So what's the risk?


Like both Peter and Tim said up above, there are things that have happened behind the scenes that none of us know about.  And since you've only been on the board for a rather short time, I'll also add that there are plenty of situations you aren't familiar with either.

We're probably doing to have to trust their judgement on this.

However, I do understand what you're getting at, and it's a fine line and tough call admittedly.
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Offline allopathicholistic

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #164 on: September 15, 2008, 01:54:23 PM »
I can see no particular need for a reset,

I don't even understand the "reset" thingy but it doesn't sound like something I would back. It sounds like extra fru-fru and Peter emphasized simplicity

(I also wanna repeat this: I don't think banned members should have the benefit of warnings. They know alllllllllll about warnings baby. They know about warnings like they know the skin on their own noses. Don't let them sit on the Italian leather sofa, let them sit on the Ejector Seat. And I mean ex-banned people who are invited back)
« Last Edit: September 15, 2008, 02:05:50 PM by allopathicholistic »

Offline Tim Horn

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #165 on: September 15, 2008, 01:57:43 PM »
I hear ya ... But ...
- I think people posting here are sometimes under enormous short term pressures and illness burdens and that things can change dramatically in 6 months
- This is an online support group -- and (as some guy named philly267 pointed out first  :)), there's not a lot of other options on the internet for HIV support.  

I'd encourage any new policy to be as forgiving as possible to those who are living with the disease and have been contributing members of the community.  In fact, given the limited alternatives I'd argue for as broad and forgiving a policy as we can stomach.  After all, if you let the wrong person back in and they act up they can always be thrown back out. Letting someone back in is only on terms and conditions that are well understood and violation can be quickly disciplined. So what's the risk?

Perhaps I didn't make myself clear. The moderators are as forgiving as possible, especially when we know someone is in experiencing an acute crisis. But even under such circumstances, people need to be accountable for their actions. And when we have individuals threatening or harrassing moderators (or other members) -- it happens more than you think, I assure you -- immediate (and permanent) removal is necessary to protect the safety of the moderators and Forums members. This IS what happens in support groups.

This is not about "respecting" the moderators. We often get e-mails from individuals who have been warned or timed out, wanting to discuss the matter further -- and this is fine. But when threats are leveled, or harrassment ensues, all bets are off.  

Offline Tim Horn

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #166 on: September 15, 2008, 02:03:56 PM »
(I also wanna repeat this: I don't think banned members should have the benefit of warnings. They know alllllllllll about warnings baby. They know about warnings like they know the skin on their own nose)

I disagree with this. Only in extremene circumstances -- such as those discussed thus far in this thread -- do we go straight to a ban or TO. Most often, we give a warning to those who are in danger of embarking on yet another TO or, indeed, a ban. Sometimes this happens publicly in the Forums... other times its via PM. Warnings are vital... and they always will be... ESPECIALLY when we're dealing with someone who faces significant time away from the Forums if he or she doesn't come back around quick.

Offline Joe K

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #167 on: September 20, 2008, 06:16:39 PM »
I'll throw in my vote to review the permanent ban policy and add the six month ban option, but I am replying to present a very unique perspective.  Many of you know me, since I joined AM in 2002 and I enjoyed many years within these very forums.  I know I made a difference and really enjoyed the atmosphere when we were smaller and even after we merged with S&S.  Unfortunately I also suffer from severe depression and anxiety and occasionally have to "re-balance" my psych meds.  It was during one of those times that I had my one and only run in with the TO policy, in effect at the time.

I will not rehash old wounds, but I cannot stress how important it is that whatever policy is decided, it must be followed as closely as possible, otherwise you may get unintended consequences.  During my drug adjustment I displayed behavior that was inappropriate for this forum and I was rightfully given a 3 day TO.  However that TO was then converted into a 7 day TO and that was that.  Again, let me be clear here, I am not pleading not guilty, just asking for consistency, because what that change told me was that even though there are "stated policies", does not mean there are not unspoken policies.

During my TO, I had time to reflect on my behavior, but more importantly, on my interaction with AM.  Up until that point, I had never even considered that I could be removed from these very forums, with the flip of a switch.  An entire support system was ripped from me, which was bad enough, but after 3 days, the banning became revenge in my eyes, because I deserved to be banned for 3 and not 7 days.

The result of this is I have stayed away from posting, because it did not seem to matter whether I was here or not.  My feelings were deeply hurt by what happened, but the fault will always remain mine.  And after 6 months, people can and do change and so I also vote for you to rescind any permanent bans, even if it's only two members. 

We need all the help we can get and even with the occasional turmoil, you still have, by far, the best game in town. 

(edited because it appears I am having trouble making complete sentences.)
« Last Edit: September 20, 2008, 06:24:04 PM by killfoile »

Offline the trebmeister

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Re: Banning and the loss of voices
« Reply #168 on: October 04, 2009, 07:22:50 PM »
does this thread help explain why i'm here now?

the inquiring mindless want to know
Your friends may say that I’m a stranger
My face they’ll never see no more
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I’ll sail on God’s golden shore

 


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