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Site Management => Site Support / Feedback => Topic started by: Galemp on February 08, 2021, 12:29:44 pm

Title: The Paradox of Tolerance, or: When is it okay to punch a Nazi?
Post by: Galemp on February 08, 2021, 12:29:44 pm
When discussing enforcement of community standards we are faced with the same problem as society at large: that is, the Paradox of Tolerance. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paradox_of_tolerance)

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The paradox of tolerance states that if a society is tolerant without limit, its ability to be tolerant is eventually seized or destroyed by the intolerant. Karl Popper described it as the seemingly paradoxical idea that in order to maintain a tolerant society, the society must be intolerant of intolerance.

One of the proposed community standards is to create a community where all are welcome, specifically calling out race, sex, and gender. However religion and politics are not represented, and we need to establish--for our community, at least--where tolerance ends.

Title: Re: The Paradox of Tolerance, or: When is it okay to punch a Nazi?
Post by: Galemp on February 08, 2021, 12:58:36 pm
I see two positions here, either proactive or reactive. For the sake of argument I'll use the hypothetical polite Nazi.

Proactive
Firmly establish HLP as taking a position against certain behaviour and groups that espouse that behaviour: Nazis are not welcome. Board members discovered to be Nazis, or affiliated with Nazis, are banned. Prevent the infiltration and entrenchment of these groups. See the bartender story (https://www.upworthy.com/bartender-explains-why-he-swiftly-kicks-nazis-out-of-his-punk-bar-even-if-theyre-not-bothering-anyone) for reference.

Reactive
Moderation is based on behaviour, not belief. Give members the benefit of the doubt until they prove themselves otherwise. In this case the polite Nazi could continue to operate in the community so long as they don't break the community guidelines against hate speech--making it clear that Nazi symbols (https://www.adl.org/hate-symbols) are considered hate speech. Regarding behaviour outside of the HLP moderation bubble, admins and moderators would do well to read up on some basic management training regarding harassment (https://www.eeoc.gov/harassment) and a hostile work environment. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hostile_work_environment)

Personally, I don't think religious or political discussion of any kind belongs here on HLP. At all. Not in the current climate, anyway. We are all here together to mod video games and  should respect each other for our contributions to the community, regardless of views on other unrelated subjects. Where it crosses the line into harassment or creating a hostile work environment, it should be addressed, but until then we ought to keep things open.
Title: Re: The Paradox of Tolerance, or: When is it okay to punch a Nazi?
Post by: Rhymes on February 08, 2021, 01:06:16 pm
Personally, I don't think religious or political discussion of any kind belongs here on HLP. At all. Not in the current climate, anyway. We are all here together to mod video games and  should respect each other for our contributions to the community, regardless of views on other unrelated subjects. Where it crosses the line into harassment or creating a hostile work environment, it should be addressed, but until then we ought to keep things open.

My thoughts on the rest will require some more time to articulate (also coffee), but regarding this, I'm going to quote Mongoose in one of the other threads we had on this just a couple days ago.

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My stance on this remains the same as it has been over the past several months: if people do not wish to engage in political discussion, then they are free to keep PolDisc disabled and to not engage in said topics. It's not even a particularly heated place, but if that sort of conversation is not your bag, then I fully understand! (If you want to see a real "lunatic asylum" of politics, check out GenDisc circa 2005 or so. Or rather, don't.) But there are many of us who have been in this community for a long time, who know each other about as well as one can in the context of a forum dedicated to a 20-year-old space game, and who enjoy talking with each other about the Big Important Things that pop up in the real world. Not everyone here is as active on the FS side of things as they may have been in the past, or may be in the future, but they still want to be engaged with the community they love. Discussions like this help that happen, and can help sustain a community during the inevitable lulls in activity that it experiences.

I think the most important thing to reiterate here is that none of the significant issues of the past several months had their root cause in political arguments, or if they were involved were tangential to an underlying issue which would have caused problems regardless. This is not a PolDisc problem.
Title: Re: The Paradox of Tolerance, or: When is it okay to punch a Nazi?
Post by: -Joshua- on February 08, 2021, 01:54:34 pm
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Personally, I don't think religious or political discussion of any kind belongs here on HLP. At all. Not in the current climate, anyway. We are all here together to mod video games and  should respect each other for our contributions to the community, regardless of views on other unrelated subjects. Where it crosses the line into harassment or creating a hostile work environment, it should be addressed, but until then we ought to keep things open.

A ban on politics and a ban on Nazis are concordant, whether the enforcement of policy is active or reactive. This isn't some democratic debate about whether or not to raise the minimum wage. Nazi beliefs are incompatible with the policy of mutual respect that HLP supposedly operates on.
Title: Re: The Paradox of Tolerance, or: When is it okay to punch a Nazi?
Post by: Phantom Hoover on February 08, 2021, 02:04:56 pm
I really don't think we need all these posts about Nazis, honestly. Does anyone actually want to keep them around...?
Title: Re: The Paradox of Tolerance, or: When is it okay to punch a Nazi?
Post by: Rhymes on February 08, 2021, 02:09:02 pm
Tbh I agree. It feels like we're all collectively going down a rat hole on this stuff rather than focusing on "how do we deal with the day-to-day interaction with regulars in the community." I think it's at least partially my fault  :blah:
Title: Re: The Paradox of Tolerance, or: When is it okay to punch a Nazi?
Post by: Mongoose on February 08, 2021, 02:10:13 pm
It is somewhat understandable given recent events, but it's also not something that's historically been a recurring problem here. I think I can safely speak for the rest of the mods in that we have absolutely no tolerance for intolerance.
Title: Re: The Paradox of Tolerance, or: When is it okay to punch a Nazi?
Post by: -Joshua- on February 08, 2021, 02:11:29 pm
I really don't think we need all these posts about Nazis, honestly. Does anyone actually want to keep them around...?
They'll have to suffer through a bunch of us being openly gay, trans, jewish or what have you if they do manage to stick around somehow so really them sticking around is much more painful for them then it is for us :P
Title: Re: The Paradox of Tolerance, or: When is it okay to punch a Nazi?
Post by: The E on February 08, 2021, 02:12:22 pm
I feel like this repeated construction of hypotheticals a bit weird. One of the core tenets of the new guidelines is that they are deliberately not exhaustively defined to account for the inherent fuzziness of human interaction, and yet here we are, in this thread and the other one, constructing scenarios in order to nail down something that almost looks like a precedent or clear parameters for moderation action.

I understand why that is, there is scar tissue that itches in this regard, but I would ask that this is a situation where some trust has to be extended to the moderators and let these situations be resolved as they arise, not in advance.
Title: Re: The Paradox of Tolerance, or: When is it okay to punch a Nazi?
Post by: Rhymes on February 08, 2021, 02:20:49 pm
I feel like this repeated construction of hypotheticals a bit weird. One of the core tenets of the new guidelines is that they are deliberately not exhaustively defined to account for the inherent fuzziness of human interaction, and yet here we are, in this thread and the other one, constructing scenarios in order to nail down something that almost looks like a precedent or clear parameters for moderation action.

I understand why that is, there is scar tissue that itches in this regard, but I would ask that this is a situation where some trust has to be extended to the moderators and let these situations be resolved as they arise, not in advance.

Hey I only did mine because I was trying to get a sense of how the rules would work to make sure that my conception was the same as everyone else's. It wasn't meant to be an exhaustive examination or rules lawyering (and it's rather frustrating to have people keep referring to it that way). I think people are trying to figure out "hey, what the **** does this actually mean?" because broad principles are by definition vague and depend on what the people enforcing them take those principles to mean. It's reasonable to try to figure out what behavior is or is not problematic before getting moderated, rather than having to wait and find out.
Title: Re: The Paradox of Tolerance, or: When is it okay to punch a Nazi?
Post by: Galemp on February 08, 2021, 02:59:46 pm
I created this thread because certain prominent political leaders are, if not Nazis, at least toying with fascism in a way that is deeply troubling. And some of their followers are significant contributors to this community.

It's important that we have principles but we have to work out how much of the political spectrum we are willing to alienate when we do so.
Title: Re: The Paradox of Tolerance, or: When is it okay to punch a Nazi?
Post by: General Battuta on February 08, 2021, 03:45:05 pm
Well, so far the answer is "none," since nobody who's an active contributor has left on political grounds. We've just removed people from positions of authority for threatening other users over political disagreements.
Title: Re: The Paradox of Tolerance, or: When is it okay to punch a Nazi?
Post by: MP-Ryan on February 08, 2021, 06:35:29 pm
What I really would prefer not to see, to echo some others, is for this thread to take off with hypothetical discussions and meanwhile the tangible discussion of how to set up community standards gets comparatively less attention.  So for those reading, if you're going to expend your time and energy on only one of these things, please make it the Standards and not this.
Title: Re: The Paradox of Tolerance, or: When is it okay to punch a Nazi?
Post by: Andreas Rybak on February 08, 2021, 07:50:00 pm
Ngl I don't think Nazis are actually as big an issue in this community as everyone seems to think they are. To my knowledge there are two people(Not a Nazi here, so ignoring past arguments) across 21 years that to my knowledge have ever been Nazis in the greater community - the guy who got banned recently, and ShadowGorrath(that's what I heard years ago, so could be wrong). I'd be worried about other political ideologies seeking to cause harm in the community than one whose members apparently show up on average a little less than once every decade.
Title: Re: The Paradox of Tolerance, or: When is it okay to punch a Nazi?
Post by: Galemp on February 08, 2021, 09:23:52 pm
More succinctly: I'm asking whether we choose to discipline members based on what they believe or what they do.
Title: Re: The Paradox of Tolerance, or: When is it okay to punch a Nazi?
Post by: Andreas Rybak on February 08, 2021, 10:45:38 pm
More succinctly: I'm asking whether we choose to discipline members based on what they believe or what they do.
As someone who got banned based on a presumption of what he believed over what he did in the community, I'm admittedly in favor of the latter.
Title: Re: The Paradox of Tolerance, or: When is it okay to punch a Nazi?
Post by: Mongoose on February 08, 2021, 11:59:13 pm
More succinctly: I'm asking whether we choose to discipline members based on what they believe or what they do.

I hate to sound like a broken record, but as always, it's about context. If someone's openly-expressed views are heinous enough that they pose a threat to the well-being of the entire community, then they can and will be removed from it. If it's a belief that doesn't quite rise to that level, then as always, it's how the person acts. I think you have to handle these situations on a case-by-case basis instead of trying to create hard rules from them that may not mesh with the particulars of a future situation.

I'd also like to echo Ryan's plea to see if we can direct this energy toward hashing out the standards, so that what we come up with in the end is flexible enough to handle any hypothetical future scenario.
Title: Re: The Paradox of Tolerance, or: When is it okay to punch a Nazi?
Post by: The E on February 09, 2021, 03:13:40 am
It's impossible to peer into people's heads. So long as their beliefs aren't made apparent in their actions, there's nothing to take action on - you can be an ardent supporter of holding phone conferences in theaters and noone would know until the moment where you'd enter a discussion arguing that talking during a film is good, actually.

This is why "ironic" naziposting (or terfposting, homophobeposting, antivaxxposting....) should be a bannable offense (It's important to pay a lot of attention to your writing if you're trying to do a sarcastic imitations of toxicity, kids. It's not enough to use <sarcasm> tags!). We can't tolerate the real thing; given that all we know about a person is what they express in their posts, it's better to err on the side of caution than try to perform telepathy in an attempt to discern what's real and what's not about a given persona.
Title: Re: The Paradox of Tolerance, or: When is it okay to punch a Nazi?
Post by: MP-Ryan on February 09, 2021, 05:04:32 pm
People are going to be held accountable for what they do, and whether it's here or elsewhere online is going to depend on the seriousness of the transgression.

If you want to fill your day with Twitter posts about the great Jewish conspiracy to destroy democracy and send all Christians to re-education camps, and your Twitter profile shows a direct connection between your personal there and your account here - or it is otherwise publicly traceable - do not be surprised if you suddenly find yourself without discord and forum privileges here. We are not a safe space for people who like to engage in public bigotry elsewhere to come relax and talk about video games.
Title: Re: The Paradox of Tolerance, or: When is it okay to punch a Nazi?
Post by: Nyctaeus on February 09, 2021, 06:20:07 pm
I created this thread because certain prominent political leaders are, if not Nazis, at least toying with fascism in a way that is deeply troubling. And some of their followers are significant contributors to this community.

It's important that we have principles but we have to work out how much of the political spectrum we are willing to alienate when we do so.
I think that a guy who vote some conservatives just [for example] for economic reasons, but also disagree [or openly condemns] with their approach to religion, culture or LGBT+ matters etc. is not a nazi-supporter. We can't blame people for having priorities. Also we can't blame people for countervoting. It happened in my life to vote options I completely disagree with, just to support counterbalance and weaken even worse assholes.

It's harmful oversimplification to recognise only nazi-supporters and non-nazi. People pledge their support for certain political options for variety of different reasons. We can't just push any Republican supporter to shameful nazi corner, as it would be very opressive and unfair for such individual.

If moderator encounter a situation involving [for example] a conservative and group of progressivists being pissed off because such individual voted some controversial politician, I think it's important for mod crew to elaborate if such guy shares some negative traits with the politician he supported. Maybe he voted because he prioritize one thing about the guy, but disagree with the rest? I think that in US the problem is even more evident as there are only two real options to pick from. Support for political option we completely agree with is a luxury... I think majority of us rarely have.

I think that especially now, when political scene is deeply polarized basically worldwide we should be carreful with accusations. And carreful with Banhammer of Ownage. Also "nazi" and "communist" are incredibly strong and offensive terms, but I see them used on daily basis in many different communities. That's what should stop, unless there is a strong reason.

...

And... Yeah, there are guys around who used to think that being gay is caused by possession of "demons of homosexuality". As much as ridiculous it sounds, I think such statements are opressive towards LGBT+ community and should be punished.
Title: Re: The Paradox of Tolerance, or: When is it okay to punch a Nazi?
Post by: MP-Ryan on February 09, 2021, 10:52:24 pm
And this is exactly the tangent we are not going down.  Temp-locked; will chat with the other staff.
Title: Re: The Paradox of Tolerance, or: When is it okay to punch a Nazi?
Post by: MP-Ryan on February 10, 2021, 08:34:18 am
After discussing with three other staff, we believe the usefulness of this thread has run its course and it is likely to simply run down a tangent that will create far more problems than it solves, so this will stay locked. If we find based on feedback in the Standards thread that we need this for side discussion again in limited areas then we'll re-visit the decision, but this just looks like a puddle of gasoline in need of a match now.