PT, we need to talk.
The mod team has noticed in recent months that most of our heavy lifting has been focused on the PT. After our “state of the PT” survey and updates, things were better for awhile. But the thread has been pretty volatile as of late. People have said they are uncomfortable here, or have left, and we’ve had to hand out some warnings and bans. Which we do not like to do. Something needs to change.
Trends we’ve noticed
- People putting increasingly unrealistic demands on moderators. In a community of this size, it is often impossible to resolve a dispute to everybody’s satisfaction. We don’t want to turn moderating into a popularity contest, nor can we be the arbiters of good taste.
- A refusal to listen to members of oppressed groups when they speak up. We do have a guideline about actually hearing members of oppressed groups and checking your privilege. Doubling down when someone tells you “this hurts me” is not a good look.
- A tendency to escalate arguments and react to disagreement with condescension, ridicule or even hostility. We get it: Topics covered here are personal and important. There is a difference between expressing yourself and doggedly refusing to even attempt to de-escalate arguments or purposely instigating trouble.
What we’ll be doing
- We will more strongly urge people to block posters with whom they get in constant disputes instead of trying to resolve conflicts. Also be aware that the mod team will eventually stop responding to requests to moderate such situations.
- We are here to serve the community and not to impose arbitrary personal viewpoints on you. Our rules are here as much for us as they are for you. We will be making better use of our guidelines to remove posts which are toxic, but don’t go quite far enough for a warning. This doesn’t mean we’ll just be removing posts because people are arguing with each other though.
What we’re asking
- Curate your PT experience. A lot of the issues we’ve been dealing with lately could have been avoided if people blocked or used the “Collapse” function. If you think this is about you? It probably is.
- We’re not asking you to never disagree with another commenter or to like each other. We’re asking you to act like adults when you disagree. We’re asking you to try and react with kindness before you react with anger.
- When you ask us to interfere, please take a minute to consider what you are actually asking us to do. Put yourself in the shoes of a moderator and try to figure out how you would expect yourself to proceed.
- When a flag is not enough: Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, preferably with screenshots and links. Try to avoid escalating in an active thread. That leads to pile-ons and personal attacks and makes moderating much harder.
We’re asking you to make this a more pleasant place for everyone. Things are going to get more fraught as we head into 2020, so please keep in mind that we’re really not each other’s enemies in this thread, and be kind to yourselves and to each other.