in which i abuse caps lock, as opposed to exclamation! marks!

Oh dear, just as I was advising you all to rush to the [ANNOUNCEMENT] thread and bask in its comedic potential it looks like Matt has slammed it shut and hid it from the boards. Now there’s a surprise. Who saw that coming?

Since I do not have the right of reply there, can I just point out that not all of us have a ‘long weekend’ because NOT EVERYONE IN THE WORLD IS AMERICAN. Ahem.

I think it might be time to leave for ever and ever and ever (again) in protest at such blatant censorship and cultural imperialism.

23 Comments

  1. spencerp said

    LOL! Of course it would be “closed”..

    I think it might be time to leave for ever and ever and ever (again) in protest at such blatant censorship and cultural imperialism.

    That isn’t going to help anyone, actually, they might even break out the champaign and celebrate. I don’t know though, my as well just overlook this whole deal, and just keep on helping eh?

  2. Matt said

    Sounds like someone could use a long weekend.😉

  3. adam said

    all closed threads disappear from the visible thread list. i learned that during the weekend where everyone had the ability to close threads (i closed a few spam threads, which was quite fun).

    nonetheless, that’s beyond ridulous. i’m glad you picked that up while i was off… being american.

  4. shorty114 said

    I can’t blame him for closing it. It was turning into more of an all-out personal war.

  5. engtech said

    they get a long weekend while I do free overtime.

    not fair.
    🙂

  6. Root said

    I feel kind of guilty for being at the scene of the crime.

  7. timethief said

    I was really happy to hear that someone else was going to be helping drmike. http://en.forums.wordpress.com/topic.php?id=7961&replies=6

    And I was completely broad-sided by drmike’s response. After all staff never made an announcement of any kind when drmike became Moderator he just found an “admin” button and reported it and that’s how he found out he had been made a Moderator. This hasn’t been the wordpress pattern so how the hell was I to know? http://en.forums.wordpress.com/topic.php?id=428&replies=11#post-1991

  8. I can’t speak for drmike, but I’m guessing he wanted to keep things quiet in case the appointment caused any bad feeling. There are a number of people who have been active on the forum for a lot longer than trent has (put it this way — he has four pages of posts, you have 94) so he may not have been expecting you to take trent’s promotion as well as you did, and may have interpreted your congratulations as being ironic🙂

    Trent, too, may have been warned not to start any threads boasting about his new status (it’s worth noting that when drmike got made a mod, he posted about it himself). Unfortunately, I think that in seeking to downplay things and shut down any discussion, they only made matters worse. I completely see why things couldn’t be handled more openly, but it’s like I was saying on the comment editing thread — if you don’t want to publicise the fact you’ve done something, perhaps you should think again about whether you should have done it at all.

  9. timethief said

    I’m not the first blogger that has used the apparently sacred word “announcement” and this isn’t the only occasion that I used it.
    http://en.forums.wordpress.com/topic.php?id=4054&replies=2
    http://en.forums.wordpress.com/topic.php?id=4164&replies=14

    The fact remains that myself and other bloggers used the word more than once on forum posts and they were not publicly rebuked for doing so.

    As far as timing as the announcement of trent becoming a co-moderator goes, drmike said that he had been told two days ago by Barry. So going back to the staff or Trent making announcements I ask: why didn’t they make one on Thursday or Friday?

    You have proffered the idea that others may not have thought I would be not be happy to hear that trent was made a moderator. Well, I can’t see why anyone would think that. Since I came here I’ve always been drmike’s biggest fan and I’m obviously not qualified to become or desirous of becoming a moderator. Moreover, I have stated this in forum threads.

    As for removing the offending “announcement” word I observe that drmike, trent and all staff members all had the capacity to do that. Any one of them could have removed it from my post and simply said: “I removed the word announcement from your post TT as staff would like to reserve the use of that word on the forum post titles.” I would have accepted that with grace.

    IMO there’s a lot to be said for bole’s article. I was telling the truth when I said that reading his article and drmike’s unseemly outpouring about his personal “poor me” stuff was a wake up call for me. He didn’t deal with the annoucement issue. His outpouring illustrates that he has a lot of repressed hostility.

    What I found in bole’s article and from the responses of other bloggers, all of whom who have lengthy histories of online communication that I lack, is that apparently some people who volunteer like drmike are considered to be self-less heroes. Meanwhile other’s like me are considered to have serious psychological disorders. So be it.

    In the working world where onlie communication does not constitute “a workplace” supervisors who spout out their personal “poor little me” stuff like drmike did are not admired or respected. They are sent off to counselling. And in that same world what trent said to me in the “announcement” thread after he moved it to th off-line forum was patronizing stuff.

    But wordpress is a surreal place. The “young boy’s club” has no business acumen and no understanding of or appreciation for strategic planning. The have no personnel department and no training for volunteers. It seems to me, although I could be wrong, that Matt is flying by the seat of his pants as co-pilot and Mark is making all the policy decisions. So rather than focusing on business structure, functionality and policy as other business people do the boys in the backroom are all busy creating toys.

    In restropect it’s possible that Matt “parachuted” trent in from wordpress.org to “save the wordpress.com” forums. Granted making such a choice is his prerogative but I don’t think it’s the course of action any savvy business person would make. Moreover, it sure as hell didn’t work, did it?

    At wordpress the forums are the only place where “community moderation” or censorship really takes place. As the forums had a very high ranking on Google and wordpress wants to re-establish and then maintain a high ranking again it’s natural that Automattic (the corporation that owns wordpress) wants to have Staff and Moderators close threads and delete entries on threads that make wordpress as a whole look bad, or wordpress Staff and/or Moderators look bad. I’m not upset that the post was closed. I was only upset that drmike used my personal name, which Matt later removed (thank goodness).

    However, if Matt and his company didn’t rely on amateur bloggers, who don’t necessarily have have computer or technical skills or human relation skills to answer support forum questions then none of this would have ever arisen.

    I have broken no contract terms in the wordpress ToS. I have not deliberately flamed anyone or attacked them personally. In fact I didn’t even know what flaming was until raincoaster explained it to me as well as taking me to task for appearing to be condescending on February 8th.

    I will not be leaving wordpress. I will take my lumps without responding. After all if I can outlive a medical death sentence I can certainly out-live anything that any blogger throws at me, whether it’s deserved or undeserved. I have my username linked to a blog and anyone can take a go at me there. However, if any blogger flames me in forum threads then the co-moderators will be deleting any posts because that comes with the territory . Condoning flaming doesn’t come with the territory and choosing to let flaming posts remain on open forum threads simply means the co-moderators and staff will be risking sullying wordpress’s public image.

  10. Matt is flying by the seat of his pants as co-pilot and Mark is making all the policy decisions. So rather than focusing on business structure, functionality and policy as other business people do the boys in the backroom are all busy creating toys.

    There’s a lot of truth in that. The trouble is, far as I can see, none of these people have ever been part of a hosted blogging community, only the loose self-hosted network of WP fanboys. When I start talking about the problems that the livejournal support and abuse volunteers face on a daily basis, I feel I’m getting the electronic equivalent of blank looks. I think Matt honestly thought the only issues involved with running a blog host were to do with hardware and software, and that the users themselves would just quietly get on with generating content. Who those users are, how they behave towards each other and what sort of content they produce doesn’t seem to interest him much. Our primary value is as beta testers for kewl new features and generators of revenue (whether it’s through ads, hosting, or deals with widget providers).

    Now all these issues about censorship and abuse and control are raising their heads, and they don’t really know what to do about them. Moreover, they’re not terribly interested in figuring out what to do about them, because they care about tech stuff, not social stuff. As a result, site policy is being left entirely to Mark because everybody else at Automattic would rather spend time playing with code and hanging out at conferences. I think Mark is probably feeling the pressure, I would say drmike is certainly feeling the pressure, and even the boundless! enthusiasm! of career moderator Trent may end up taking a battering too.

  11. Matt said

    I’m actually very happy with the direction things are heading in. There is a grand plan, usually you’re a bit quicker on picking up on them, but you’re pretty off the mark here.

  12. Let me guess… launch of some kind of to-do wiki blog twitter 2.0 type thingy, nobody will be quite sure what it’s for exactly but it’s gonna be BETA and involve oversized fonts. More ads on wordpress.com. More VC funding. World domination. Get bought by Yahoo even though everyone says this is a mistake on their part because blogging is in overall decline.

    This is why I do not speculate on Grand Plans, it either alarms people or reduces them to hysterical giggles. Or both.

  13. mark said

    I’m not feeling any pressure. It gets annoying in the forums when a small number of people start to make lots of noise but that used to happen at .org too
    If anything I feel less pressure than I did at .org because here I can – and do – go in and fix things for people.

    And site policy isn’t just down to me. We discuss issues, we see what happens, we make decisions. It just happens that I’m naturally watching the forums because it’s a support place and I will post as needed. It’s not that the others stay away – they are busy in their own areas. But we talk a lot more than people may realise.

    As for forum disagreements – they happen. They cannot be avoided. Forums are not places made of sweetness and courtesy sometimes. That might be a goal but it’s a distant one. No matter what could / would / should be done / have been done or whose view you take the forums could not be managed.
    If they are ‘managed’ then it’s control
    If it is not managed it’s lack of control
    There is no win there….
    Except for the only win – let things be until it really has stepped over the line then stop it. You hope people learn and move on. There is no other way – and anyone who says different is wrong. People disagree – so let them to a point. As to where that point is… that’s down to the individual and in every bad thread someone wants it to continue and someone else wants it removed.

  14. timethief said

    What an eyeopener this has been. Building a blogging business on a foundation of the sinking sand of dysfunctional moderation … hmmm … could it be that the “grand plan” is entirely off the mark when it comes to user interface in the forums?

    We now have an extensive list of Moderator behaviours and tactics that point to trent heading for the hills the minute after drmike has condoned and encouraged flaming, a reflection of his repressed hostility and lack of balance http://en.forums.wordpress.com/topic.php?id=7737&replies=33

    Of course having pointed to this if he’s dull of wit and doesn’t mind swimming in shit me may see the poor guy riding in again smiling and being nice, very, very nice.

    drmike has lost it and he needs help. He inappropriately washed his personal underwear in public, while wringing his hands and posturing “poor little me”. He inappropriately posted “note to self send Matt my resume” in a forum thread. He employed namedropping to inflate his self-importance re: Donncha asking him to work on wpMU to inflate his self-importance. He condoned flaming. Immediately after the first inflammatory post that he failed to moderate drmike stated: “You know I could be somewhere else trying to find a job and trying to make some money or working on extra stuff like new themes or plugins for my paying clients and making them happy instead of listening to TT not get it.”

    Perhaps it’s actually Matt and Mark that aren’t getting it. The man needs help in the very worst way. Moreover, it seems unlikely that a successful user interface can be built on a foundation of volunteer moderators who demonstrate such impropriety, dysfunction and favourtism. Does the “master plan” contemplate financing professional help for such volunteers? I sure hope so.

  15. Root said

    TT have you considered therapy? A lot of folk think you are unglued.

  16. Matt said

    Hey, no need to get personal.

  17. Root said

    Matt this is a blog. It is not part of your empire. Albeit hosted at com.

  18. Dead_ said

    A call for civility is hardly enforcing his iron will on the population of a blog. There was no lines to read between there.

  19. Root said

    Well I for one am fed up with TTs self indulgent ranting. It has no place in a support forum. It is both pernicious and destructive. And she may get little sympathy outside of a relatively flame free forum if she continues.

  20. adam said

    @root-
    you’re looking rather black yourself, mr. pot. in that same thread you are by turns sarcastic and self-righteous. especially ironic that you would be sarcastic about the length of trent’s stay when you’ve been around only a week longer (and he has answered 5 times the number of threads you have). i hate to think how destructive and pernicious you might be after 94 pages of thread replies.

    but that would require you to be actually helpful, rather than digging up old threads just to snark about the relavence of hAtom.

    personal attacks like yours don’t have a place on blogs either, whether they’re matt’s fiefdom or TGA’s.

  21. Root said

    Well I could show you quite easily how destructive and pernicious I get after 94 pages of replies. And more. Quite easily. Just checkout the org forum.🙂

  22. adam said

    i only count 66

    …and i see a fair amount of snark since your return.😛

  23. Right, that’s it. I’m locking, and anyone who wants to call me a hypocrite for it is welcome to do so. If you still want to flame each other, take it to your own blogs. Pingback this post if you feel the need to defend yourself against something that’s been said here, but I’m not going to play host anymore.

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