there are no rules in kintsugi

Discussion in 'That's So Meta!' started by fake and gay, Apr 19, 2017.

  1. Xitaqa

    Xitaqa Secretly awesome

    So, @fake and gay, if you have the spoons to respond to this:

    First, I hope you're feeling a lot better than you were when you posted that vent that got this whole discussion started!

    Second, I did read that original thread the first night, as I intended, and I've been mulling it over since. What you've posted in this thread has certainly helped me understand why you didn't want to do the thing, but I'm still not really comprehending why you asked if I had read the original thread after I first posted here.

    Maybe there is something that is obvious to you that I'm not perceiving, bc my brain does that sometimes, but it looks to me like what you originally posted here to start the thread (which is what I based my post on) gave a pretty accurate picture of the original event. I still feel like the importance of tagging or spoilering content when requested by other users (mods or not) is a sensible application of the guiding principle of the forum, not a special rule that exists, or needs to be stated, separately - but this might be because I interpret seebs' One Rule to mean "behave as though other people matter" and maybe there's more wiggle room in that interpretation than I am perceiving?

    Sorry if this is derailing at all, this thread has kind of moved forward into what I think is a productive discussion, but i'm still interested in understanding your perspective further, if there is anything more you would want to communicate on the topic.
    • Like x 2
  2. seebs

    seebs Benevolent Dictator

    So a thing has occurred to me, as a general pattern I've run into a lot here.

    The underlying point of the guidelines is to ask that people act compassionately, as much as they can. Care whether other people get hurt. There's no point in trying to articulate the specific rules, because they're not really necessary. From my point of view, if someone says "hey, this un-spoilered suicide planning is upsetting people", it makes sense to spoiler-tag it because it's hurting people, and avoiding hurting people is a pretty good idea. If someone's venting, it makes sense to not openly mock them for it, because why would you do that? Mocking people doesn't help them.

    And over the time we've had this site, there's been a fairly significant number of people whose response is always "no one told me I had to", or "there's not a rule", or whatever. And the thing is, if we tried to make rules for every one of these things, we could have more rules text than we have any other posts on the site and still not be halfway done.

    So instead, we just have guidelines, and expect people to be willing to at least think about "does this request someone made relate to the guidelines in some way?" Note, "someone". Not necessarily a moderator.

    And generally, problems we encounter are one of two things. Either someone's not in an emotional state to handle that kind of thing at all, or they're focused on the question of whether or not it's "a rule". And the former is something we can usually deal with through accommodations or working with people, but the latter is much harder to solve. We can't have a set of rules that completely describes "treating people decently". You have to actually think about them as people who have experiences and try to think about what those experiences might be and how you can make them better, or avoid making them worse.

    And we can't make you do that, and we can't do that for you.

    Over time, the people who have emotional-state problems, either the problem's transient in the first place, or they're working on getting better, and as they get better things improve. Maybe not fast enough, but they absolutely do improve over time. The people who refuse, though? That doesn't "get better" until they become persuaded that they should do the thing, instead of refusing to do it. There's no way to fix this by force. There's no way to impose it. If you've decided that a person Doesn't Count and it's okay or even good to be cruel to them, there's nothing we can do to fix that. We can put in the guidelines, we can make you agree on login that you understand that our premise is that nothing anyone can do or say makes it okay to treat people like trash.

    But you can still treat people like trash. We can't stop you. We can move posts or edit them or hide them or do whatever we want, but that doesn't mean they're not being treated like trash, it just means we're covering it up.

    So, in this specific case: Yes, I really do think that refusing to spoiler-tag a thing when it's traumatizing other people is treating those people like trash. It's saying that their experiences aren't important. And I don't think it was meant that way, and I don't really expect someone who's suicidal to be able to make the best possible decisions, and that's okay. We absolutely took that into account and it's covered in our charter stuff. But it's important to recognize that the problem here isn't the lack of a specific rule about spoilers. That was never the problem. The problem is that someone didn't care that other people were being traumatized by a thing. And that's not really a moral judgment; "caring about other people's emotions" is not one of the things we expect from people in a lot of pain. But it absolutely is enough to explain why a moderator would think the post should be edited; because the user wasn't in a place where they could do the thing of caring whether other people got hurt, so someone else was gonna try to step in and provide a workaround to protect those people.
  3. I think this might, in part at least, answer your question?
  4. fake and gay

    fake and gay Member

    hey, how many times do I have to point out that things obvious to some people are not obvious to everyone?

    hey, how many times do I have to point out that this was never the problem in my situation at all?

    smh can you fuckers at least try to not twist this thing about my confusion over non-rules being enforced with moderation and unhappiness with lack of communication into not caring or refusing to help

    Beldaran did it, and now you're doing it. stop
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2017
  5. seebs

    seebs Benevolent Dictator

    We know that! That's one of the reasons it's an issue.

    I am very confused by this.

    You posted a thing, which had non-spoilered suicide planning in it. Other people were traumatized by it and had nasty dissociative episodes and such, and informed mods, and that's why Beldaran asked you to spoiler the thing.

    Specific people being harmed by thing -> ask for thing to change.

    I think this is the fundamental miscommunication. You're thinking "there's a rule that things have to be spoilered, which wasn't written anywhere, but mods enforced the rule". But there's no such rule! There's lots of things that don't get spoiler tags, and we don't necessarily care about them. But once actual people come to us saying "help this is upsetting", we try to look into the thing and see if we can fix it.

    We didn't react to that post because it was a bad post (it wasn't) or because you're a bad person (you aren't). We reacted to someone telling us that the post was fucking them up and they would prefer that it be changed in a way that acknowledged that seeing that kind of thing was upsetting to them.

    And I think what I'm taking from this is that it would have helped if the phrasing had included that information explicitly up front. Like, if Beldaran had said: "Hey, we have some people who find suicide-planning type things really triggering and they're freaked out by that being there without some kind of spoiler tag or warning, could you put it in a spoiler tag? Or we could do it for you if you can't deal." Would that have been better?

    Also, I did the thing where I digress to general cases again. The discussion of people refusing, in general, is not really what happened in this case. I mean, you did say "no", but I think that's because you didn't understand why the request was being made, so you were viewing it as "authority figure telling you to change a thing according to a rule that you weren't aware of". And I was viewing it as "person asking for an accommodation".
  6. Beldaran

    Beldaran 70% abuse and 30% ramen

    To explain the wording I chose, saying "could you please do thing?" is usually less distressing than "you (accidentally) hurt someone so can you please do thing?" and I was attempting to minimize extra distress. Minimizing distress is different for everyone, and can't really be done perfectly.

    The info "hey you hurt someone" can often be incredibly distressing and drive people in crisis even further toward harm so like, it's hard to know exactly what's needed.
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2017
    • Agree x 2
  7. seebs

    seebs Benevolent Dictator

    Ugh. Yeah, I see the problem. If we don't say "this is coming up because someone is hurt", it seems like arbitrary enforcement. If we do, it seems like "confirmation that you're a bad person who only hurts people" which is a thing that is probably not great to confirm for already-suicidal people.
    • Agree x 4
  8. albedo

    albedo metasperg

    copy/pasting something I wrote elsewhere, by request.

    • Informative x 6
    • Agree x 2
    • Witnessed x 1
  9. seebs

    seebs Benevolent Dictator

    That's good information. I'm not sure whether it is exactly helpful, because it doesn't give me any great ideas of how to fix the problem, but it's good information, and I think it probably is relevant.

    At this point, "trust us, we're doing this for your own good" is in and of itself a red flag.

    Hmm. Related: Are the guideline-type things clear enough about the fact that we're asking that people trust that we have good intentions, not that they trust that our decisions are correct?
  10. albedo

    albedo metasperg

    The fix for me would be...

    If I tell you 'no, this is distressing me, stop', would you?

    If the answer is no, then your primary motivation isn't "making me feel better", and I would prefer if you were transparent about it rather than trying to protect my feelings.
    • Agree x 4
  11. seebs

    seebs Benevolent Dictator

    And with a lot of the stuff we have with Competing Needs, the answer is "we would try to adapt", but not necessarily completely stop, because we might end up saying "look this sucks and I'm sorry, but this other person is on fire right now and the sprinklers are gonna go on even if you hate water". Like, I can't necessarily commit to definitely not pushing a thing, because sometimes there's a really, really, compelling reason.

    But I do try to avoid pretending that it's not sucky.
  12. albedo

    albedo metasperg

    Yeah, and that's honestly not what would bother me, in that situation. Sometimes there are needs!

    It's being lied to that would bother me, and pretending that it's not sucky or like something were being done "for my own good" would ping me as 'being lied to.'
    • Agree x 2
    • Like x 1
  13. albedo

    albedo metasperg

    Yes, but asking people to trust that you have good intentions is... not actually reasonable for certain brainweirds.

    @Chiomi, I'm just gonna ping you here. You remember all the years when I've gone "no, stop talking about feelings, give me the tangible reasons"? Can you help me articulate this?
  14. Beldaran

    Beldaran 70% abuse and 30% ramen

    I keep getting a lot of contradictory info here, and I believe the consensus is "everyone is different and cannot expect mind reading." My very first original post didn't frame anything as being for the good of anyone because I know that "because you hurt x" and "for your own good" are both triggery as hell, but then I'm criticized for not communicating so like... Again, if anyone has suggestions of how to balance all that.
  15. Xitaqa

    Xitaqa Secretly awesome

    I understand that. In fact, I feel like there is something in all of this that is obvious to you that I am not comprehending at all, and I'm really frustrated by my inability to understand you.

    It kind of looks like my efforts here are not going to be helpful to you, or to anyone else, and I definitely don't want to frustrate you further, or lay any additional drains on your spoons. So I guess I will drop the topic, but if you feel like there might be any value in continuing to engage with me, you are absolutely welcome to do so. I just wish I could be more helpful here.
  16. Chiomi

    Chiomi Master of Disaster

    From what I've seen, it's not good intentions that's the problem. it's that there is a lot of history for a lot of people where good intentions + 'i care about outcomes for you' = being run roughshod over by authority figures. I don't think updating the guidelines would necessarily help? I think being consistently transparent and giving concrete reasons for mod action when stuff is on fire is probably going to long-term lead to less stuff being on fire
    • Agree x 5
  17. fake and gay

    fake and gay Member

    yes, because that would have informed me of the expectation and that i had not only options but the ability to give or deny permission for them before anyone did anything

    I wasn't referring to your first post, I was referring to this lovely assertion here

    I'd actually appreciate an apology for that, if you care to give one

    sorry @Xitaqa I might try to explain later
  18. Beldaran

    Beldaran 70% abuse and 30% ramen

    I don't, no. Just because it's not what you intended internally doesn't mean it didn't happen.
  19. seebs

    seebs Benevolent Dictator

    I think the important thing is to understand that the ability to give or deny permission isn't an absolute. We'll make calls based on specific circumstances and situations sometimes. We might act immediately and dramatically in one case, and just leave a thing in another. It's gonna depend on things like how many people are upset, how upset they are, anything we know about your state, and so on. And sometimes it may seem like there's enough reason to act immediately to not stop to ask.

    And... I am not sure what you want an apology for, because so far as I can tell, you did in fact flatly refuse to work with Beldaran on that. You may not have known why Beldaran wanted you to do the thing, but that was in fact what was happening; Beldaran was trying to prevent harm that was actively happening to other people, and you directly refused.
  20. fake and gay

    fake and gay Member

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