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Subject: Re: not about (was Re: PLEASE DO NOT CC ME ON MESSAGES TO THIS
From: J C Lawrence <claw @ kanga . nu>
Date: Tue, 25 Feb 2003 18:20:45 -0800
To: Chuq Von Rospach <chuqui @ plaidworks . com>
Cc: bwarsaw @ python . org (Barry A. Warsaw), Tom Neff <tneff @ grassyhill . net>, list-managers @ greatcircle . com
In-reply-to: Message from Chuq Von Rospach <chuqui @ plaidworks . com> of "Tue, 25 Feb 2003 16:55:07 PST." <F2C46B70-4924-11D7-895E-0003934516A8 @ plaidworks . com>
References: <F2C46B70-4924-11D7-895E-0003934516A8 @ plaidworks . com>

On Tue, 25 Feb 2003 16:55:07 -0800
Chuq Von Rospach <chuqui @
 plaidworks .
 com> wrote:
> On Tuesday, February 25, 2003, at 04:34 PM, J C Lawrence wrote:

>> For instance I've one poster who is irascible, dogmatic, zealous and
>> tireless on his crusades -- and frequently just wrong.  BUT, he's a
>> useful irritant.

> But what do you do when they stop being useful?

That's why I don't publish their kha khan status.

About 5 years ago I ran a system where posters had public flags
indicating (more or less) the level of trust I'd given them.  It worked
great until a few started going off-beam.  At the time I didn't have
enough substantive activity to warrant a public dressing down or flag
removal, but I did have enough to raise all my warning signals and tell
me that I was facing a list fork and dissolution in 6 months if I let it
continue.

<shrug>

So I killed all the flags and made the list hand moderated, rather than
having to publicly justify a set of actions which on the face of it had
little justification (or could trivially be painted as having none and
me as merely being my normal tyrannically despotic svengali self).

> I'm in a situation where on one of my lists a person who's generally
> been a useful devil's advocate (and a bit of a wry wit) has more or
> less turned into an eeyore troll who can't lose an argument, and is
> willing to redefine a fight or reslant data endlessly to avoid having
> to. sort of the shift from snide to bitter, from stubborn to, well, me
> before I figured out what an asshole I could be at times (and, in all
> honesty, that's pretty much exactly how I explained it to him).

What I do now is multi-stage, some in parallel:

  I start editing and rewriting bits of their posts (and noting in the
  post that I did).

  Some of their posts silently disappear in moderation (discarded).

  More of their posts/threads are redirected to a parallel Meta list
  (which has a much smaller audience)

  Posts are held until after their time of interest and general
  relevance (ie until the sting has gone out).

  Replies to him are sanitised (or softened) with an EdNote in the post.

> I'm honestly not sure what to do here. He generates good content --
> sometimes. it's almost a phase of the moon thing, we can more or less
> plot the cycle. I just can't figure out how to short-circuit the down
> phase and encourage the up phase, and it's really started wearing on
> folks.

One of the chaps I have follows a clearly visible sawtooth wave with
strident screeching at the high points.  My current action has been to
do all the above as he approaches the points each time.

> yet I really want to keep the person around, if I can.

Ditto.  I also try and flatten his cycles so the period grows and the
frequency of screeches falls.  Don't know if its working (only been 1.5
cycles so far).

>>>> How do you structure and present this?  Any enforcement other than
>>>> willingness?

>>> Lurker days have very loose rules:

>> Gotcha.  How do you organise/present lurker days?  Just post an
>> announcement that next Wednesday is "lurker day"?

> Pretty much.

<nod>

> when we came up with the idea, we threw it out to the list for
> feedback adn a sense of "worth a try?" -- since this list is used to
> being a guinea pig and sort of gets off on playing with this stuff,
> everyone hashed out the logistics, and now it pretty much runs
> itself.

Cool.  I think I'll try that with the next list evolution.

--
J C Lawrence
---------(*)                Satan, oscillate my metallic sonatas.
claw @
 kanga .
 nu               He lived as a devil, eh?
http://www.kanga.nu/~claw/  Evil is a name of a foeman, as I live.


References:
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From: Istvan Berkeley <istvan @ louisiana . edu>
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From: Chuq Von Rospach <chuqui @ plaidworks . com>
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From: Doug McNutt <douglist @ macnauchtan . com>

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