The Inescapable "Paizo Is Going Down the Drain" Derails


Paizo General Discussion


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So, I kind of wanted to say something about those threads that keep popping up, those "inexplicable" subject derails into complaining about site moderation, about SJWs taking over, about the "chilling effect on free speech" we've seen in recent months now that Paizo has adopted a policy of banning open bigots using the website.

This conversation is probably going to keep sprouting up for a while in various tangentially-connected threads. A lot of us would love to stop seeing it, but there are a number of regular posters here who feel frustrated at not being able to have conversations without fear of tripping up and getting called out and banned, and those frustrations probably aren't going to go away until either those users experience dramatic changes in perspective or push boundaries just enough to squeak into states of "Permanent Sus".

I don't really give their anxieties a lot of credibility, mind you. While callouts might sometimes be a little harsh or rude, and sometimes post deletions might feel unnecessary to some, those aren't really punishments to fear. Being criticized or having a post deleted is extremely light as far as consequences go. The only people who have been banned have been extremely hostile, repeatedly insulting minority groups or insulting those who advocate for them. I don't miss them.

Let's talk about that second target, the insulting of those who advocate for minority groups. That's a very familiar tactic to me. There's a funny habit the more subtle TERFs have formed of avoiding going after trans people directly. Instead, they criticize "trans activists". It's a very nice vague way of attacking the group while assuring any moderates watching that they have no problem with "the good ones". It's a tactic used by other reactionary ideologies, too--"I don't have any problem with [group], it's the activists who say that [group] deserves rights that go too far!"

This liberal language--celebrating the minority but punishing all activism on the minority's behalf--has the same "chilling effect on discourse" that a lot of people on this thread are afraid of. It makes allies hesitate to advocate for [group], and members of [group] afraid to advocate for themselves. [group] is expected to stay nice and polite and in their lane.

For another example... are we allowed to acknowledge yet how Gamergate was just an insane hate campaign fueled by rage that minorities in gaming communities were daring to speak up for themselves? You know, launched by an abusive ex who made up a bunch of lies to hurt a game developer who dumped him? Back in the day, Paizo moderation simply banned all talk of the harassment effort. Paizo didn't want to take a side, because taking a side would have meant banning a lot of blatant bigots and abuse apologists. I remember quoting a Zoe Quinn tweet about Thanksgiving, getting called out for it by another user, and knowing I couldn't really respond without all our posts getting deleted, because Paizo preferred comfortable silence over messy honesty.*

Paizo's taking a side now. I don't know the deeper motivations of those who don't like the side Paizo has chosen, or who object to the way Paizo has chosen to take its side, or whatever. But they're probably going to keep bringing it up for a while. They feel attacked. They protest that they aren't allowed to voice their opinions anymore, but... they never really say what those opinions are. And they wonder why some of us are suspicious or don't give them the benefit of the doubt.

"Paizo is silencing my beliefs!" What beliefs? That trans people deserve dignity? "You can't say anything without getting in trouble with the mods!" You mean like repeatedly misgendering people, or defending vehement bigots? What are you talking about, if not that?

I dunno. It's a tangle by design. With all these strings in a knot, it's hard to know which ones to cut, and which ones are just caught up in the mess.

It might help if those who really are just caught up in the mess actually seemed to care about making their positions clearer, though.

*I do think moderation was overworked and doing their best, but I always felt very disturbed knowing that we couldn't even criticize Gamergate, and that so many pro-Gamergate posters were being left alone, as if those views wouldn't filter into their behavior elsewhere. I also do believe that moderation was pretty openly anti-Gamergate, though I don't remember details on that. A lot of the pro-Gamergate users later got banned for other offenses, which kind of suggests maybe banning them sooner would have saved everyone a lot of trouble.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber; Starfinder Superscriber
Quote:

"Paizo is silencing my beliefs!" What beliefs? That trans people deserve dignity? "You can't say anything without getting in trouble with the mods!" You mean like repeatedly misgendering people, or defending vehement bigots? What are you talking about, if not that?

I don't understand the thrust of this. You want to make it a bannable offense to say something anodyne like "I don't think (x) is a bad person, despite what some people are saying about him"?


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Flag and move on.

Posting leads to engagement leads to argument leads to continuing to see "it."


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I’ll be honest, I’ve seen significantly less misbehavior since the permabans for bigotry started. Not to dismiss your worries at all, KC, but things have been the least-terrible I’ve seen in years as of late.


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Leon Aquilla wrote:
Quote:

"Paizo is silencing my beliefs!" What beliefs? That trans people deserve dignity? "You can't say anything without getting in trouble with the mods!" You mean like repeatedly misgendering people, or defending vehement bigots? What are you talking about, if not that?

I don't understand the thrust of this. You want to make it a bannable offense to say something anodyne like "I don't think (x) is a bad person, despite what some people are saying about him"?

What makes you think it wasn't already a bannable offense?


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber; Starfinder Superscriber

It goes on for 10 pages worth of hits


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Kobold Catgirl wrote:

So, I kind of wanted to say something about those threads that keep popping up, those "inexplicable" subject derails into complaining about site moderation, about SJWs taking over, about the "chilling effect on free speech" we've seen in recent months now that Paizo has adopted a policy of banning open bigots using the website.

This conversation is probably going to keep sprouting up for a while in various tangentially-connected threads. A lot of us would love to stop seeing it, but there are a number of regular posters here who feel frustrated at not being able to have conversations without fear of tripping up and getting called out and banned, and those frustrations probably aren't going to go away until either those users experience dramatic changes in perspective or push boundaries just enough to squeak into states of "Permanent Sus".

I don't really give their anxieties a lot of credibility, mind you. While callouts might sometimes be a little harsh or rude, and sometimes post deletions might feel unnecessary to some, those aren't really punishments to fear. Being criticized or having a post deleted is extremely light as far as consequences go. The only people who have been banned have been extremely hostile, repeatedly insulting minority groups or insulting those who advocate for them. I don't miss them.

Let's talk about that second target, the insulting of those who advocate for minority groups. That's a very familiar tactic to me. There's a funny habit the more subtle TERFs have formed of avoiding going after trans people directly. Instead, they criticize "trans activists". It's a very nice vague way of attacking the group while assuring any moderates watching that they have no problem with "the good ones". It's a tactic used by other reactionary ideologies, too--"I don't have any problem with [group], it's the activists who say that [group] deserves rights that go too far!"

This liberal language--celebrating the minority but punishing all activism on the minority's behalf--has the...

Can you explain it as if you're talking to a 5 year old with a short attention span?

I'm not sure I understand.

Liberty's Edge

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Seriously... KC, what even is this thread if not an attempt to bait? Did I miss something happening recently or like... have you been getting harassing PMs? I'm very confused.

As far as I can tell things haven't been this peaceful in a LONG time and the moderation changes have been working wonders to be an antidote the community needed. There was one dust-up with friends of someone who got the boot in the organized play forums but that was downright level-headed compared to the way things were even 4 months ago.


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"If [insert people here] get [insert rights here] then ANYONE can have them!?!"

I saw that on a shirt once or twice.

I didn't have the money to buy it at the time...

Quote:
dunno. It's a tangle by design. With all these strings in a knot, it's hard to know which ones to cut, and which ones are just caught up in the mess.

Some people think they are Alexander The Great and can solve anything through violent extrospection.


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Themetricsystem wrote:

Seriously... KC, what even is this thread if not an attempt to bait? Did I miss something happening recently or like... have you been getting harassing PMs? I'm very confused.

As far as I can tell things haven't been this peaceful in a LONG time and the moderation changes have been working wonders to be an antidote the community needed. There was one dust-up with friends of someone who got the boot in the organized play forums but that was downright level-headed compared to the way things were even 4 months ago.

Uhhhh.... No. That was harassment and a lot of people at rightfully furious at the events that you consider harmless. Also that thread has someone working on himself getting banned from organized play too.


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Also to elaborate. I don't think the OP
of that thread was engaging in harassment but stuff was going on in the background.

Radiant Oath

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Once again, I'm coming here from Twitter and Tumblr and this place seems so nice. There's a few bad actors out there, but most people on here seem good-willed. I guess I'm satisfied with the state of moderation.


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"Boy, the way Glenn Miller played
songs that made the hit parade
Guys like me we had it made
Those were the days
Didn't need no welfare state
ev'rybody pulled his weight
gee our old LaSalle ran great
Those were the days
And you knew who you were then
girls were girls and men were men
Mister we could use a man like Herbert Hoover again
People seemed to be content
fifty dollars paid the rent
freaks were in a circus tent
Those were the days
Take a little Sunday spin
go to watch the Dodgers win
Have yourself a dandy day
that cost you under a fin
Hair was short and skirts were long
Kate Smith really sold a song
I don't know just what went wrong
those were the days"

Reminiscing about a golden age that never existed is as American as apple pie. The best advice I can give is to find the humor in the dissonance, or it will bring you down.


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god late last year/early this year was wretched. glad that guy is gone and work is being done.


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This thread was not an attempt to bait, and the "flag and move on" comments are extremely hurtful when I put a lot of effort into keeping this post civil and constructive. I started this thread not because things are getting worse, but because there is transparently still a lot of lingering resentment, and I felt it would be best to acknowledge that resentment openly instead of just let it keep popping up over and over without comment.

So, um, okay, let me try to reply here.

keftiu wrote:
I’ll be honest, I’ve seen significantly less misbehavior since the permabans for bigotry started. Not to dismiss your worries at all, KC, but things have been the least-terrible I’ve seen in years as of late.

I agree. It's a good change. Like I said, I think the mods are much more prepared to "take a side" now than they were in the Gamergate days.

Leon Aquilla wrote:
I don't understand the thrust of this. You want to make it a bannable offense to say something anodyne like "I don't think (x) is a bad person, despite what some people are saying about him"?

I said "vehement bigot", not "(x)". And yes, I think defending people who, say, advocate for harm to minority groups is a bad thing that should earn you moderator attention.

Leon Aquilla wrote:
It goes on for 10 pages worth of hits

Sorry, I'm confused. Are you saying people used to never get banned for defending JK Rowling, and now they are getting banned for defending her? I don't understand. Are you saying she's not advocating for policies that harm trans people?

captainyesterday wrote:
Can you explain it as if you're talking to a 5 year old with a short attention span?

A lot of people are mad that some mean posters got banned, but they don't need to be mad, because mean posters make the place we post on less good. I think those mad people are going to keep being mad for a while, and I think it's good to talk about them being mad instead of ignoring it.

It's been a while since I've played with the Simple English Discord Bot, but that's my best effort.

themetricsystem wrote:
Seriously... KC, what even is this thread if not an attempt to bait? Did I miss something happening recently or like... have you been getting harassing PMs? I'm very confused.

A few people were wondering why the "SHAME ON YOU!!!!!!!!11!!" thread got derailed into yet another litigation on how "there's no free speech anymore". I wanted to give my thoughts on that, but I didn't want to keep reviving the thread, because a few PFS people have said it's hurtful to them to see keep popping up to the top of the subforum.

Things are peaceful now, and I didn't mean to give the impression they aren't, but it's really transparent how the second any thread drifts remotely close to the subject of moderation, the exact same people start making the exact same complaints as ever. I guess I just wanted to give my thoughts on that, since those posters have to live with us, and we with them.


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Thank you for explaining that, I agree!


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"peaceful"
It's always peaceful when you are speaking in an echo-chamber


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TheGlaive wrote:

"peaceful"

It's always peaceful when you are speaking in an echo-chamber

So we're clear on your complaint: You are opposed to banning racists and transphobes?


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TheGlaive wrote:

"peaceful"

It's always peaceful when you are speaking in an echo-chamber

You can make that arguement any time someone is removed for violating terms.

Shadow Lodge

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And boy do they try to make that argument.

Paizo Employee Customer Service Representative

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Locked for Moderation

Paizo Employee Customer Service Representative

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While there have been points made and civil discussion thus-far, this thread has the potential to derail and require further moderator attention, therefore it will remain locked.

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