To the HLP Community,
We understand recent events involving a locked and deleted thread and the actions of the staff have been frustrating and difficult for everyone. We want to thank you for your patience while the administrators and global moderators resolved this issue. Moderating staff have the obligation to act impartially in their duties and to bring in other staff when they cannot. Clearly this rule was violated in the recently deleted thread in Political Discussions, and this has understandably led to hard feelings. This is not a situation where platitudes are appropriate, and we are announcing the following measures and changes, effective immediately:
1. All active staff have reaffirmed the commitment that they will not moderate disputes they are involved in, period.
2. Staff, like all members of the community will be expected to use the Report Post function to handle disputes with other members or moderation of issues in which they are directly involved. As we have a relatively small number of staff and - in Political Discussions in particular - we can often have many actively in a discussion, staff will be permitted to temporarily lock threads until other impartial moderators can respond to reports. ALL staff have committed to the principle that their influence should be to de-escalate disputes.
3. Future community moderation in General Discussion and Political Discussion will be undertaken by a minimum of two staff working together in agreement. This may result in more temporary locks as cool-down periods on highly charged issues while staff can respond. No single person will have final say or act unilaterally.
4. Staff are developing a more comprehensive guidance on what constitutes a personal attack. This can be subjective, and that can clearly lead to issues. More information on this measure will follow.
5. With regard to the deleted thread, selected posts from the thread relevant to the original topic and subsequent discussion will be restored and the thread will be reopened for discussion. A group of three staff not otherwise involved as participants in the thread will determine which posts are to be restored. Due to personal schedules of the three staff involved, this may take a few days.
6. Goober5000 will be separately posting an apology to the community regarding his actions in particular.
7. Goober5000 will no longer be engaged in moderation duties in General Discussion and Political Discussion until otherwise specified.
Also we all apologize for the amount of time this has taken to get resolved. What happened was a very serious issue and it was only right to not rush it or be done by just a few people. We reached out to as many other staff members as we could to get their input and insight, and unfortunately everyone isn't as active or around as they used to be. Having a clear consensus from the staff was very important to get this resolved.
As always with anything the people with power around here say, I'll believe it when I see it. I mostly trust you, and 100% trust MP-Ryan, but the rest, to widely varying degrees, I don't trust. There are some I think will probably abide by the new rules but wouldn't bet on it, and others who will do their own thing as soon as it suits them, as they always have done for all the time I've been here, rendering everything that's ever been said here as empty words.
But at least this is more concrete than the usual stuff that comes out. And I approve, if it's implemented, particularly the end to unilateral moderation. I'm sure some people will abuse the locking threads part, but that's still an improvement.
About Goober, I approve. He was wrong, and so has been stripped of his power in the area he was wrong. Presumably there will be consequences if he breaches the conditions. There's no need to de-admin him, nothing ever happens outside the discussion forums, so unless I'm missing something, he's lost all the "sexy" power, and what he's left with is for putting in work, not having power over others. Afaik, he didn't drop the hammer on anyone, so I don't think we need to drop the hammer on him. Those who attacked him should be thankful they've gone unpunished.
I don't get the point behind calling Goober a "white supremacist" as I have never seen Goober post something racist; people in the US have been voting Trump for a number of reasons; black people voted him, latinos voted him and if they didn't his chances of ever becoming president would've been 0. It's surprising me that there are still people here haven't figrured that out by now.
Because it's Goober and they hate him. It's gaslighting, hitting him with the most uncharitable possible interpretation. It may even have been intentionally trying to bait him into using his power. People around here have been trying to get rid of him for years and years. If they can get him stripped to the ranks, then they can drive him out like the rest of the people they've driven out.
Could someone please explain to me what happened? What did he say and do that was so bad?
He got accused of being a white supremacist because he supports Trump by multiple people. He threatened legal action on those people if they didn't retract the statements, and when they didn't, he retracted them for them by deleting most of the thread. (I'm guessing he didn't actually delete it but split it away into the hidden mod / admin forums if we're going to get the thread back.) I don't necessarily think the legal action part was wrong, as in actionable here. He's not abusing his admin position doing that, anyone could do that.