"Vent Threads" and the Community

Discussion in 'The Undercity' started by Beldaran, Aug 17, 2016.

  1. seebs

    seebs Benevolent Dictator

    I tend to agree with this; I don't feel comfortable with the "you can just not look" argument.

    On the other hand, I'm not sure where responses would go. "Respond in the vent thread" seems like it's almost certainly counterproductive. "Respond in the original thread the person was venting about" may be a bad choice, because the point of the vent thread posting was presumably to NOT put that material there. Maybe an argument island thing? Maybe your own vent thread? I'm not sure.

    I think my default would be to suggest argument island, because that way they're pretty clearly invited to come engage with you if they want, while other people are pretty clearly disinvited from dogpiling.
     
    • Like x 4
  2. KingStarscream

    KingStarscream watch_dogs walking advertisement

    This I think is a thing too. I have seen people mark things when venting about community members, and that is probably good practice. (Tumblr circles frequently have a #not about my followers/mutuals tag. This is handy for mitigating anxiety caused by vagueness.) But sometimes venting isn't clear cut and the vagueness has less to do with "covertly calling out community members" and more to do with "no spoons to elaborate distressing and potentially triggering incident".

    Establishing a protocol wherein people feel that they cannot post venting without great elaboration feels... indirectly harmful? I'm trying to word this right and failing I think. If someone is unable or unwilling to elaborate (because spoons, paranoia, anxiety, or other brain reasons) the response shouldn't be "then don't post it", because down that path leads issues with anxiety, spoondrain, scrupulosity, etc. Especially if the venting is already quarantined away.

    (And if a vent post seems like vaguing about someone, that seems fair to question on the thread the vaguepost happened in. Otherwise we're heading down the route of vagues of vagues of vagues which is equally unhelpful.)
     
    • Like x 11
  3. seebs

    seebs Benevolent Dictator

    That's some good thoughts.

    I think part of the problem here may be that sometimes when there's conflicting social protocols, people will pick up on one thing they definitely don't want to do, because it's obvious to them why it would be upsetting, so they'll do another instead.

    So for instance, I might think "I don't want to argue with X in their vent thread, so I'll post over here in the thread that was already on the topic". And that's a thoughtful intent, but I think you're right that "where it was not-posted for a reason" probably ought to win. But that doesn't mean that a person who makes that mistake has acted with ill intent; they may just have not thought of that. I mean, people do make mistakes in trying to argue things, sometimes. And people who are angry or hurt are more likely to overlook things, because anticipating other people's reactions gets harder.

    I mean, right now, it seems to me like a good starting point might be "post a thread in argument island, linking/quoting the vent thing, and responding there", because that creates an implicit invitation for the other poster to join in if they want to hash it out, or not, and an implicit disinvitation of everyone else to jump in and yell at people. Because that never helps.
     
    • Like x 5
  4. Beldaran

    Beldaran 70% abuse and 30% ramen

    But this is the exact thing I've seen multiple instances of dogpiling for, because people seem to think that the OP of a vent thread is allowed to boot people who they were talking about and then support that ejection through scolding/shaming. :I
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2016
  5. Mala

    Mala Well-Known Member

    "Stop worrying" is unreasonable yes. Believe me, I know. But "don't go poking around other people's vent threads if you think they might set off your anxiety" doesn't seem that unreasonable especially when we have the ability to request bans from subforums. I don't see how it's that different from saying "don't seek out things you know will trigger you"
    For general discussion topics, I can see that. But for threads talking about a specific person's personal experiences it's much more reasonable. We have several Ask Me Anything threads where the OP sets terms and nothing bad's happened with that.
     
    • Like x 7
  6. Wiwaxia

    Wiwaxia problematic taxon

    I agree that that would be a bad thing, but I don't think that is anything like what is actually going on. I seriously doubt anyone would have batted an eye if cA had made an argument island thread to discuss the thing, and nobody criticized cA for their initial post in OnnaStiks's thread responding to things said about them, only for continuing to try fight over OnnaStik's tone, in their vent thread, after onnaStik had said they'd wanted to disengage.
     
    • Like x 7
  7. seebs

    seebs Benevolent Dictator

    I think the difference is, you could well be right that someone is genuinely talking about you, and that is a thing you might care about or want to respond to, because it's actually important to you. So if someone might be venting about you, that's a thing you could reasonably care about. And in general, the vent threads that "might" set off your anxiety are not necessarily worse than the anxiety of not looking, and thus having no information at all.

    Yeah. But at the same time, I don't think that extends to "don't quote or respond to things that were said here, even elsewhere", because at that point, it's no longer controlling the thread about the specific person's experiences, it's controlling more general behavior, and that's probably bad territory to get into, I think.
     
    • Like x 1
  8. KingStarscream

    KingStarscream watch_dogs walking advertisement

    I'm not actually aware of these instances, because nothing on specific has been cited. Which, given the heated nature of the thread, is a pretty good idea right now probably.

    In which case I still feel that responding in the vent thread is the best protocol, even if that response is just a link to an argument island thread. Which doesn't mean that the OP of the thread can't be upset about it, depending on their emotional state when the response is posted, and pushing someone when they say "I am not able to do this right now" feels cruel, but that still seems better than taking that response into a broader sphere of influence and discussion.

    I guess I'm wondering at which point Dead Dove rules apply?
     
    • Like x 5
  9. seebs

    seebs Benevolent Dictator

    But if that's a vent thread, and you post in a vent thread questioning or responding to a thing which was actually venting about you, a bunch of other people might come into the vent thread and yell at you for it. And that's not hypothetical, I believe it's happened a few times now.

    And thus, the "okay, so what should we do" question. I'm not sure yet.
     
    • Like x 1
  10. Beldaran

    Beldaran 70% abuse and 30% ramen

    I think that Dead Dove rules only apply to fiction, and that stuff said about you is always going to be about you and thus your business, so DD is not really a thing in this case.
     
    • Like x 1
  11. Aondeug

    Aondeug Cringe Annoying Ass Female Lobster

    As someone with anxiety I'm kind of bothered by the implication that I'm incapable of avoiding looking at things that I know will upset me. Or that, if I know that I am, I am incapable of taking measures to forcibly keep myself from doing it. There are reasons I haven't asked to be unbanned from the argument forum. If I go into a thread I know will upset because I am worried then that pain is entirely on myself I feel.

    And on that note, I'd like to share why I would prefer my vent thread be a public vent thread. The reason specifically being that I have anxiety. In the instances where I had no one to talk to privately that I trusted enough to do so I instead broke down publicly. Because then the accusations and the paranoia were out for everyone to see. I suppose it was a way of getting myself to believe that I could now force my "foes" to come out and fight me "openly". Which is more comforting than sitting in a corner crying about it and how scared I am.

    This being pointed out just because I want to make clear that I feel that there are conflicting needs for the socially anxious here. And that there probably will continue to be.
     
    • Like x 11
  12. TheMockingCrows

    TheMockingCrows Resident POTSie potato.

    @Aondeug you worded thing amazingly, yes, similar feeling here. I don't want my screams private because if my paranoia was actually founded in fact then it could go ahead and happen instead of festering.
     
    • Like x 4
  13. seebs

    seebs Benevolent Dictator

    No intent to imply that everyone can't avoid looking at things, but some people would rather look at a possibly-upsetting thing than have a definitely-upsetting ambiguity as to whether the thing was upsetting or not.

    So, yeah, conflicting needs, definitely a thing, and definitely a problem.
     
  14. Mala

    Mala Well-Known Member

    I think Onna actually said the best general social protocol for handling "I saw something in a vent thread about me and I'm hurt"
    (or even just a single post in the vent thread saying something similar) From there the individuals in question can decide if and how to discuss the thing.

    In the instance that prompted this thread (and possibly other previous ones, idr), the problem was that the person continued posting and arguing in the vent thread after it was clear that the OP wanted them to not do that.
     
    • Like x 9
  15. Aondeug

    Aondeug Cringe Annoying Ass Female Lobster

    I really like Onna's idea on that front, yes.
     
    • Like x 5
  16. Beldaran

    Beldaran 70% abuse and 30% ramen

    There is no set protocol for this sort of thing yet, hence this thread, and hence my extreme displeasure at people dogpile enforcing a non-rule that no one could possibly know about. Because it doesn't exist.

    That people feel like that's an okay thing to do is way more disturbing than one user having unkind things to say about another user one-on-one.
     
    • Like x 3
  17. seebs

    seebs Benevolent Dictator

    I think PM or just make the thread, whichever. Either will have similar effects, but people might have a preference for one or the other. Some people are very uncomfortable with private messaging in general, or especially during conflicts. Others don't like to say things in public. So, you get to decide which avenue you prefer for such a thing.

    I do not think it is useful to characterize a single thing as "the" problem. I can identify several things that I think were problems, some of which contributed to other things that were also problems. And the only one we can usefully do much about is "we clearly don't have any shared understanding of what social protocol is good for handling this kind of thing", but I've seen multiple people advocate specific courses of action that have been actively condemned by other people either in this thread, or in specific cases of this kind of conflict. And that's where we run into an issue; clearly, we're seeing a fair bit of mismatch of social expectations here. And discussing that and talking about what expectations or protocols would help seems like a good way to improve things.
     
  18. seebs

    seebs Benevolent Dictator

    I definitely agree with this. I am not okay with people getting yelled at for using the wrong protocol when there's so clearly significant differences of opinion on what the protocol should be in the first place. Yelling at people for making mistakes does not make things better.
     
    • Like x 4
  19. Aondeug

    Aondeug Cringe Annoying Ass Female Lobster

    You asked for thoughts. You are getting thoughts. That the majority is against you doesn't count in this case because what you asked for was thoughts. Not agreement.
     
    • Like x 8
  20. seebs

    seebs Benevolent Dictator

    I am unable to determine what this is in response to.
     
    • Like x 1
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice