27
votes

Mos Eisley is currently frozen#, apparently indefinitely. I assume it has something to do with the users mentioned in @Shog9's banner, but is it possible that we be told - at least in concept - what happened in our room to make it get frozen again?

If the rest of you want to create a new room for this site, think twice about it.
If you decide to do it anyway, learn from the lessons of this room.

Shog9#

Screen capture of the "mos Eisley" (now defunct) chat room, displaying information about why the room was "frozen".


Please bear in mind that this involves users being banned, so the usual "don't talk about what isn't your business" rule applies.


# Link will only work for users with 10K+ reputation in chat.

locked by Shog9 May 18 '17 at 18:58

This question exists because it has historical significance, but it is not considered a good, on-topic question for this site so please do not use it as evidence that you can ask similar questions here. This question and its answers are frozen and cannot be changed. See the help center for guidance on writing a good question.

Read more about locked posts here.

  • 13
    I personally don't agree that our entire room should be frozen, especially since it seems like it was caused by two specific users. Why not block those users only? – Möoz May 12 '17 at 8:12
  • 19
    "This time" - what happened the last few times? – Journeyman Geek May 12 '17 at 8:50
  • 24
    Added the comment telling us to "learn from the lessons of [Mos Eisley]"; I'd actually like to learn but (as I wasn't present most of the times the room got frozen) I'm unsure what those lessons are supposed to be. – SQB May 12 '17 at 8:52
  • 3
    @zabeus it's been deleted, so only mods and users with 10k reputation in chat can see the room right now. – Mithrandir May 12 '17 at 13:08
  • 6
    @Mithrandir OK thanks hopefully the mods will answer here so the rest of us random users who weren't even there at the time will know what lessons we need to learn. – Z. Cochrane May 12 '17 at 13:21
  • 1
    Why? Because everyone could use a little carbonite nap now and again. – can-ned_food May 12 '17 at 17:48
  • 6
    What I don't understand is why the room got deleted? Just move the last week into trash and leave the room frozen but its archives searchable so we can still see the useful content. – b_jonas May 12 '17 at 19:21
  • 3
    @b_jonas Because of tomato blight. – SevenSidedDie May 12 '17 at 19:26
  • 3
    So did life just imitate art here? – Machavity May 13 '17 at 23:35
  • 16
    In an entirely unpredictable turn of events, it became a wretched hive of scum and villainy. – Paul D. Waite May 14 '17 at 10:23
  • 2
    @JourneymanGeek The same thing. Small issues with a few users got a largely disproportionate response. – Slacklord the Terrible May 15 '17 at 18:00
  • 5
    Those small issues were never handled by the folks there. I'm doubtful I'll win you over, but I'm a firm believer in chat moderation being a long term project and my views on it have always been about working together to form a healthier community. On the other hand, when I came in - and I'm a huge sci fi fan, I saw a room that would dismiss almost any concern raised, and had a few users hostile to a regular user who happened to be a moderator elsewhere simply because he was a moderator. I gave it two days, didn't feel at home, and quietly left. – Journeyman Geek May 15 '17 at 23:29
  • 3
    Right. Feel free to follow up on that accusation. Who did I punish? This is precisely the attitude I am talking about. Calling people Smurfs isn't nice. Feel free to give concrete examples, and try to use less insults. – Journeyman Geek May 16 '17 at 22:34
  • 4
    I'm not sure. I'm still getting an antagonistic tone. You don't happen to be Axelord do you? He was mean to me for no apparent reason. JUST CAUSE I WAS BLUE. And stuff like that is toxic man. And really, its not just about a few people, its about the culture that makes it fine to be less than nice to others for no reason, or to encourage crying wolf (Some folks were encouraging flagging for no reason), and so on. Also. Calling mods smurfs is not nice. Please don't. – Journeyman Geek May 17 '17 at 0:36
  • 7
    I literally just came in. If you don't remember, consider, you're reflexively being mean to people just cause they're a mod. You're constantly ranting about mods still. I don't know man, the first step is realizing you have a problem. – Journeyman Geek May 17 '17 at 0:59
31
votes

A year and a half ago, I froze Mos. We don't need to rehash that again here; the linked discussion covers it thoroughly. At the time, we (the employees of Stack Exchange) were of two minds as to whether we should reinstate the room at all; eventually we decided to do so, with the hope that a bit of encouragement could avoid future problems. I've come to believe this was unwarranted optimism.

Lemme be clear: there are plenty of reasonable people who regularly participated in the room. This isn't about punishing the members of SFF, most of whom are still free to use chat; I froze and later deleted the room to correct the mistake I made a year and a half ago. If you've ever battled tomato blight, you know that once it gets into the soil there's no sense in planting new tomatoes there until it dies out; new plants will just become infected and die. Mos Eisley is infected soil; it is my opinion as a gardener and community manager that investing further time into it is a waste for both me and you.

A year and a half ago, I wrote,

Listen when someone speaks up. If you're told that someone's uneasy about the current topic, then ignoring them is a slap in the face; be respectful of others (#1) and stop intentionally hurting them.

The continuing inability to do this was, to me, a sure sign of the room's sickness. In any active venue, things will be said that prove problematic to the larger audience; that's to be expected. How the group handles it determines whether they will continue to function. When yesterday's little episode crossed my desk, what dismayed me wasn't the off-color jokes - it was the fact that they continued after flags were raised, continued after a moderator stepped in to handle the flags, continued after the moderator attempted to reason with those who remained in the room.

There are many times more people active on this Q&A site than were ever active in its chat rooms; chat exists to serve them should they need or want it. A chatroom, promoted here as the primary social gathering place for the site, which becomes hostile or unresponsive to the larger community it purports to serve... Has lost its purpose and needs to end.

  • 13
    I saw no flags. I saw Catija (who was already in the room) raise a concern after I'd made a post, at which point both Himarm and I immediately shut up. There was no hostility and no-one was abusing the moderator. Both Himarm and I accepted that we'd crossed a line and took a short suspension on the chin. Neither of us (nor anyone else in the room) imagined that this sort of dramatic action would result. – Valorum May 12 '17 at 17:13
  • 26
    I want to be really, really clear on something as the director of community management for SE. We're done talking about this as of this post. – Tim Post May 12 '17 at 17:14
  • 7
    As one of the people active on the Q&A site but not the chat, the reason for that is precisely because of the impression (well-founded or not) I get of heavy-handed moderation, and the feeling I would have to very carefully watch everything I say lest dire consequences rain down. Since that doesn't sound very fun or relaxing, I've never been much interested. I suspect SE chatrooms just really don't fit well into the designed SE experience. – Shamshiel May 13 '17 at 20:39
  • 9
    How "heavy handed" the moderation is in chat depends entirely on who is moderating, @Shamshiel; the lightest touch is always self-moderation. Nearly all trouble arises from a perplexing expectation that chat won't be moderated like the main SE sites; perhaps we should've called it "discuss" instead of "chat". – Shog9 May 13 '17 at 22:51
  • 16
    @TimPost that makes it pretty difficult to "learn from the lessons of this room." – MissMonicaE May 14 '17 at 20:12
  • 10
    Nonsense, @MissMonicaE. As I said above, we covered this exhaustively many months ago, and I quoted the critical lesson again for emphasis. Don't confuse a group of people playing dumb because they don't want to learn with an inability to learn; I've watched toddlers figure out these basic lessons of social interaction, so I'm more than confident the folks here can handle it if they ever care to do so. – Shog9 May 15 '17 at 23:05
  • 3
    So i guess i go from a 12 hour suspension 7 months ago to complete chat ban bypassing the usual escalation methods used by stack. especially for an in context non-offensive statement, that was, i admit flag worthy out of context. – Himarm May 16 '17 at 2:25
  • 5
    Just for anyone watching, and speaking of “what to learn from Mos”: the belief expressed in this statement by @Himarm ↑ is an excellent example of what might get people in significant trouble in the future in chat, so it's a belief to avoid. Put clearly: messages are being expected to stand on their own in front of the judgement of the Be Nice policy. It's already been said a while back that appeals to context are no longer a defence of messages that violate the rules, so that's something to studiously avoid going forward. – SevenSidedDie May 16 '17 at 2:42
  • 9
    @Shog9 I wasn't a part of Mos "many months ago," though, and what happened back then is difficult to figure out just from poking through the remains on Meta (I've tried). I didn't happen to be online for this debacle, so I only have a vague idea of what happened. All I can learn from this is Be Nice, which I already knew, and "don't rely on context." I don't have a clear sense of Mos's reputation, or the particular bad dynamics at play, or frankly most of the things that you're treating as obvious. I saw a bit of "sometimes people get irked at each other" and I saw the remains – MissMonicaE May 16 '17 at 12:25
  • 9
    @Shog9 of the wrath-of-god that ensued, and I don't know what happened in between. That's not because I'm a toddler or willfully obtuse (sheesh); it's because I'm not enough of an old-timer. (I am honestly trying to learn here, so I'm sorry if this sounds passive-aggressive. I guess I'm also hurt that you compared me to a toddler but I'm trying to keep that out of my tone.) – MissMonicaE May 16 '17 at 12:26
  • 5
    @Shog9 A good moderator ruins a room that does the same things other rooms do, yet consistently pulls itself back out, and learns to not explode at the first whiff of trouble. Incidentally, whoever put this problem in front of you needs to spend a few hours in the transcripts on all the major rooms -- they're high on hype. I keep being told you're great at the jobs we don't see -- but I don't appreciate you insulting the nicest people on this site because they don't see eye to eye with you. – Slacklord the Terrible May 16 '17 at 18:00
  • 3
    I'm not here to moderate, @Terriblefan. – Shog9 May 16 '17 at 18:22
  • 5
    @Shog9 Then why exactly do you feel the need to come in and kick teeth in after the fact? – Slacklord the Terrible May 16 '17 at 18:24
  • 6
    I talked to y'all for two years, and nothing changed, @Terriblefan. So, you're right; I'm done with that, y'all can take your fun somewhere else. – Shog9 May 16 '17 at 19:26
  • 6
    @Shamshiel I'm sorry, but that's just demonstrably false. There are plenty of SE chats that are exactly the same level of Nice as mainsites and, often, nicer than their parent site's Metas. – nitsua60 May 17 '17 at 22:55
11
votes

It's not a complicated answer. Users known for being troublesome in the past continued to be troublesome in a room well-known for troublesome behavior. As such, the decision was made to ban the troublesome users in question from chat, and permanently freeze the room that is almost defined by its troublesome culture and seems to act as a magnet for troublesome behavior.

So in short, trouble got Mos Eisley in trouble. If you want a new room to survive and thrive in the way that Mos Eisley didn't, just ensure that troublesome users don't keep causing trouble (mainly through controversial statements).

  • 7
    @Gallifreyan Because rightly or wrongly, Mos Eisley picked up a reputation for being a room for troublemakers. It's continued existence, again rightly or wrongly, led weight to the idea that the behaviour the room was known for was becoming more acceptable. It isn't acceptable, and therefore the room has been frozen, as much to be mad an example of as to solve the continued issues that the mods were facing. – Dr R Dizzle May 12 '17 at 10:25
  • 10
    @Mooz It was about more than one user; certainly there were a handful of names quoted whenever Mos issues came up. – ArtOfCode May 12 '17 at 11:23
  • 12
    @Mooz I don't agree. I've been active on Mos Eisley since I joined SE, and even I can see that Mos has slowly drifted into a less acceptable, more controversial place over the last few years. Simply put, it's a room where users felt more comfortable pushing the limits of the "Be Nice" rule - that's not on. – Dr R Dizzle May 12 '17 at 11:25
  • 14
    @zabeus Maybe that thinking is part of the problem. – Dr R Dizzle May 12 '17 at 12:01
  • 20
    Just to clarify, was it politics? Actual harassment? Off-color material? Use of Big Macs as pizza topping? Jujitsu against bears? :) Part of the problem with "don't talk about the incident" is that it's kind of like that classic "you know what you did" scenario. – FuzzyBoots May 12 '17 at 12:19
  • 10
    just ensure that troublesome users don't keep causing trouble (mainly through controversial statements). As we've seen in other chat rooms, making controversial statements isn't necessarily inherently the problem. In many places, people can have civil discussions centered on controversial statements. Historically speaking, for whatever reason, this has been a problem in Mos. Which is not to say that the users involved here aren't at fault - they know better. Both have been around long enough to know what sort of things fly or don't fly, and knew better than to say such things. – phantom42 May 12 '17 at 12:21
  • 17
    @Mooz that's completely untrue. Your reputation is network-wide, mentioned all over the place and Shog's opinion is shared by many, many users, myself included. I am an avid sci-fi buff and chat user and yet I always stayed away from Mos since I found it very unpleasant. And I am not alone, I have discussed this with various other users who felt the same way. So no, this isn't on Shog, far, far from it. – terdon May 12 '17 at 13:09
  • 18
    Mos already had a bit of a reputation among a number of mods when I started as a mod. That's two years ago. Its reputation only got worse from there - it got marginally better for a short while after the previous big freeze, but only marginally and only temporarily. This is in no way about Shog - when the vast majority of network moderators hear your chatroom's name and say "ugh, again?", there are serious problems. Shog is merely the person who actually did something about it. – ArtOfCode May 12 '17 at 14:49
  • 10
    @EnigmaMaitreya Why are you trying to role play? Mos was not a room for role playing. – Catija May 12 '17 at 16:49
  • 8
    @EnigmaMaitreya That's a very fine line you're trying to draw, and it's not a sustainable one. If you need special protections for your chatroom to work correctly, SE chat is probably not the place for that kind of interaction. – ArtOfCode May 12 '17 at 17:49
  • 8
    @KutuluMike And if you asked the users of the Bridge, or of Lounge<C++>, they'd tell you their rooms were perfectly normal too. (They're both reasonable these days, but in the past that certainly would have applied.) If you spend your time immersed in a particular environment, of course it seems normal to you - but to those of us who haven't spent a large proportion of the last few years in Mos, the kind of conversations that sometimes went on there were far from normal. – ArtOfCode May 12 '17 at 17:51
  • 9
    @EnigmaMaitreya I know what you're saying, but I don't see how it relates. Things got flagged in Mos because they were objectively offensive, numerous times, not because someone had a problem with a debate process (more to the point, no debate was being held). – ArtOfCode May 12 '17 at 18:05
  • 7
    @Terriblefan yes, again, what? I do hang out in the English chat room but I have never brought any kind of negative attention to it. Not to my knowledge anyway. I would also request that if you're going to go around accusing people of "worse behavior" than joking about molesting women, you should have some pretty strong evidence to back it up. Once again, I'm pretty sure you are mistaking me for someone else. – terdon May 15 '17 at 17:13
  • 12
    Can we not use the MOOOOOOOOM but he did it argument? Yeah, mods are human and we slip up sometimes. Or we realise things arn't quite right and we work to fix them. Its nice to consider the past but question is, going forward, how the new chat room can be a better place than what came before. What someone did years ago isn't as relevant right now. I believe effective chat moderation is immediate, done by the users and sensible. I'm sure if you look hard enough, you can find me transgressing similarly. Let me know if you find any :) – Journeyman Geek May 16 '17 at 1:24
  • 9
    @Terriblefan if you're concerned about hypocrisy then perhaps you shouldn't complain that Shog is being mean to your friends and then call moderators/CMs smurfs in your next breath. – TylerH May 16 '17 at 18:31
-14
votes

First and foremost, I do NOT question the action that was taken. I was not there, I was not consulted, I simply found the equivalent to a 404 tab. I will NOT question those that made the decision.

I will ask for clarification, such that a new user (does not mean a new to life person) does NOT repeat what ever it was that did happen.

I chose to do this as an answer as opposed to messages. IF I am wrong to do so let me know and I will delete the answer. My goal is to be constructive, not to criticize.

@DrRDizzle, terdon and others.

I have no clue how serious the conversation was as I was not on and can not learn/understand what happened.

BUT to use another venue as an Example. Everquest creates Blue (No PvP) Servers and Implements Evil Races and Class's. How does one Role Play Evil in such a scenario? Isn't it in a sense Bait and Switch, Suck them in and say no you can not do that? I get that EQ couldn't do that and cater to the target market.

I think SE wants to be open and allow "Freedom of Speech". I understand that "Freedom of Speech" SHOULD require one to be responsible with what one says ON the other side of that I understand that IT IS POSSIBLE to tell people "If you do not like what goes on in here then don't come in". IF I revert back to EQ the Red Servers were PvP enabled and the classic answer was "If you do not want to engage / participate in PvP then do NOT COME HERE".

I understand that SE has a Big Picture of it's Users desires and interest and it's reputation on the Internet.

I understand that SE needs to steer the site to meet the goals it has established for itself.

What may be required is to establish that this SE is a Blue Server with "Play Nice" as the rules and not be overly concerned with "Freedom of Speech" and providing a form of protection from those that see speaking freely is not what should be done.

I have problems with every chat room I participate in and the parent Q/A ... Many times I see the question containing words, material, themes that may not be suitable for younger people and may pose problems for Parents of young people. The standard reply is the "community" (I assume the people in the chat room are the community) have decided to be very lose with ....

I am no fan of censorship, but I also am no fan of posting things that go after the reader of post's.

It is my opinion, that if one wants to make an example of something, then one needs or should also make clear what the point is and provide examples from "The Example" of what went over the line.

It is my opinion, that often times just deleting the posts WITH an explanation to replace them as to what went over the line. In addition IF there is a need to ban posters then do so.

BEGIN EDIT: The following section is wrong, it was based on a flawed understanding and should be disregarded. Perhaps IT should be a LEARNED thing that one does NOT flag posts in such a contentious room, ever, even to the extent of removing the ability and changing it to a community event section, such as We will be airing "This Movie Name" on "This Date and Time" and would like to invite you all to join us.

EDIT: Phantom4 said "No. Just, no. The answer to people behaving poorly isn't "just don't let them say something is wrong". I beg to differ, the theme behind the bad feeling is the Flaged Messages. I may be wrong but isn't that the star one hits to "flag it'? Honestly I can be wrong so explain this. IF I am right then in a contentious room, isn't that a method to draw attention to the worst of that room? END EDIT FOR DISREGARD

EDIT: "no, absolutely not. SE does not want to be open and allow freedom of speech, not when that freedom means "I get to say whatever I like and I don't care who it makes uncomfortable". A better description would be that SE wants to make sure the site they have created can be enjoyed by all people irrespective of cultural background and sensitivities. This means that freedom of speech comes a very distant second to civility of speech. – terdon"

I think your not saying anything differently than I said. Do you literally mean we are not free to say what we think here? No, you make it clear there are limits. I said "I understand that "Freedom of Speech" SHOULD require one to be responsible with what one says", perhaps you just missed that line. BUT if "literaly" are not free to speak, responsibly, then were are the guidelines, of what can and can not be said, so I can do a due diligence on not crossing the line?

  • 6
    Fwiw, people who aren't at least 13 aren't allowed to create accounts on SE. – Mithrandir May 12 '17 at 15:53
  • Yeah I have seen that in the other rooms but I am not sure that SE has the capacity to verify and enforce that. That is not saying they should, just stating that if they can not does not remove their responsibility. – Enigma Maitreya May 12 '17 at 15:54
  • 3
    "What may be required is to establish that this SE is a Blue Server with "Play Nice" as the rules and not be overly concerned with "Freedom of Speech"" This is already a rule on all Stack related sites. – phantom42 May 12 '17 at 15:55
  • 8
    Perhaps IT should be a LEARNED thing that one does NOT flag posts in such a contentious room, ever, even to the extent of removing the ability and changing it to a community event section, such as We will be airing "This Movie Name" on "This Date and Time" and would like to invite you all to join us. No. Just, no. The answer to people behaving poorly isn't "just don't let them say something is wrong". – phantom42 May 12 '17 at 15:56
  • 17
    SE has no "freedom of speech". I'm not sure where you get that idea. SE has "Be nice". If content is not nice, it is not welcome. No questions. No excuses. There are no rooms where this is allowed. – Catija May 12 '17 at 15:56
  • 16
    'I think SE wants to be open and allow "Freedom of Speech"' : no, absolutely not. SE does not want to be open and allow freedom of speech, not when that freedom means "I get to say whatever I like and I don't care who it makes uncomfortable". A better description would be that SE wants to make sure the site they have created can be enjoyed by all people irrespective of cultural background and sensitivities. This means that freedom of speech comes a very distant second to civility of speech. – terdon May 12 '17 at 15:59
  • 5
    The point of flagging is to call attention to a message that may need to be moderated, often because the message is offensive, or falls afoul of the rules. I assume it doesn't feel great being flagged, but the bad behavior needs to be addressed and corrected. By not allowing people to flag problematic messages, moderators/room owners are less able to find the bad behavior that needs to be corrected. – phantom42 May 12 '17 at 16:05
  • 3
    Are you asking if you flag a message by clicking the star? No. That's not flagging. The flag icon looks like a flag on a pole. The flag is next to the star. – Jolenealaska May 12 '17 at 16:08
  • 2
    Mods of any SE site, and any user with enough rep, who are in a chat room at the time are all notified of messages that are flagged - regardless of what chat room the flagged message is in, and regardless of what chat room they, themselves, are in. – phantom42 May 12 '17 at 16:17
  • 1
    I included a link to the "be nice" policy in my first comment. Perhaps you should start there? – Catija May 12 '17 at 16:19
  • 20
    Just to clarify a point on the "freedom of speech" bits: the goal of Stack Exchange is explicitly to empower people to collect accurate and useful information on various topics, with each site dedicated to a specific field of learning; we encourage freedom of speech only so far as it works toward those ends. Individual groups are both empowered and encouraged to limit speech when it becomes counter-productive to that goal. – Shog9 May 12 '17 at 16:34
  • 4
    My comment is as much for the benefit of those responding as for yourself, @Enigma. That said, I think your answer is a bit rambling; could benefit from some editing to focus on the core point you're trying to make here, and perhaps also formatting. – Shog9 May 12 '17 at 16:41
  • 14
    I have literally no idea what you are trying to say here. – Dr R Dizzle May 12 '17 at 16:48
  • 4
    There is no onus on SE to continue to host anything they disagree with, and it certainly isn't a restriction of Freedom of Speech for them to remove it. xkcd 1357 is relevant here: "The Right to Free Speech means the government can't arrest you for what you say. It doesn't mean that anyone else has to listen to [you] or host you while you share it... If you're yelled at, boycotted, have your show canceled, or get banned from an Internet community, your free speech rights aren't being violated..." – Robotnik May 13 '17 at 13:59
  • 2
    @Robotnik I kind of thought this was all done and buried. I thought I had made it clear that "Freedom of Speech" here was not the "Constitutional" Freedom of Speech. I thought I had made it clear that the "Freedom of Speech" I used was constrained by the Rules of SE. Yet I see comments that seem to want to say I am wrong, based on an assertion that I am claiming some Constitutional Right. I just do not know how to make it any clearer. Perhaps you can offer an acceptable alternative phrase that conveys the same meaning but short circuits those that want to drag the Constitution into it. – Enigma Maitreya May 13 '17 at 14:22

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