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Ban appeal for Skornzy banned by Warc
#1
My IRC/Discord Username: Skornzy#6795
Date and time of the ban: 04/08/2020
Who banned me: Warc


Message given in the kick, if present: 
Just letting you know you've been removed from our discord. 
I've decided to take this action after a long stream of heated arguments that always seem to involve bad faith and trolling. There is no singular event, but a pattern of behavior we feel has been, on average, uniquely negative. These arguments seem to pop up unprovoked with a slew of different players and with alarming regularity. 
No further action is being taken at this time, and you can appeal the permanence of this ban in 30 days. 
Please reflect on your interaction with the community, and whether you'd like to continue in this direction.


Summary of events leading up to the ban: 
Before I was banned Dions was talking about how useless centrists were in #general. I said that it was an interesting take, and she followed up by saying a hypothetical centrist should write a Facebook post about centrism and die. I originally misunderstood what she meant and thought she was directing the death comment at me, which caused me a lot of frustration. What followed was an intense argument over what centrists believe in, and getting further upset by my inability to properly get my point across in a way that was understandable to everyone involved. Instead I went about things in an abrasive, and passive aggressive way. At one point during the discussion Emarl mentioned that Dions didn’t directly tell me to die, but at this point things were still heated, emotions were still high and I didn’t want the argument to stop until I could tell my thoughts on the matter were properly recognized. In the end I called Dions an asshole and left.


Why I should be unbanned: 
I feel absolutely terrible about all this. After thinking about the way I had been acting in the Discord over the past month or two before my ban I fully understand why the ban was placed. I believe I was taking my stress relating to the current world pandemic out on the Discord, and if reinstated will absolutely refrain from doing so in the future. I will also always be sure to keep in mind the feelings of others when talking about current events and otherwise, not take things so personally, and stop getting into arguments. Things that I had forgotten to do in those past months. I realize now how regularly checking in with the Goonstation Discord community has had a positive effect on my life, and I’d like to give some of that positivity back.
#2
I'm able to share my side of any other argument I've been a part of if that would help move things along.
#3
Let's start with laying out some timeline stuff you might not be aware of.

The discussion about whether or not to ban you started on March 6th and the decision to ban you from the discord happened on March 24th, well preceding the actual ban date, April 8th. 

You were given another chance due to some internal policy discussions, culminating in you blowing that chance several more times before the incident with Dions actually happened.

It was a group decision that had already been decided, twice, and that you had been shown grace for already, once. The first decision was 53% in favor, and the second decision was unanimous.

The team doesn't have much faith in the possibility of improvement over one month, and this appeal being a carbon copy of the one you made mere days after the original ban isn't encouraging. Not to mention, the ban reason is pretty thorough about the fact that the Dions incident was not the reason for your ban, and yet that's literally the only thing you talked about in the "what led up to the ban" of this thread. This feels disingenuous, as this point was clarified to you in DMs after the fact.

This last bit is not necessarily just for you, Skornzy, but also for everyone else reading. The argument with Dions was discussed internally, not publicly, and a resolution was met, as per our guidelines. Just because you don't see the discussion doesn't mean it didn't happen. We extend admins the same courtesy we do to our players, that being:

Quote:
  • Staff are strongly discouraged from punishing or extensively reprimanding players in public venues, such as OOC or a public Discord channel. Instead, staff should seek to resolve those issues in more controlled spaces, such as in adminhelps or the #lets-talk channel.

and

Quote:
  • Staff are discouraged from revealing or discussing the specifics of any player's punishment, talkings-to, adminhelps, or reprimands with anyone other than fellow staff members or that player.

In other words, someone else's conversations with the admin team are not your business unless they choose to share them with you or the circumstances merit public disclosure.
#4
Hello, and thank you for the reply UrsulaMejor. I believe I may have misunderstood the appeal format. It says to write a summary about what happened just before I was banned, and to keep things brief. I no longer bear any ill will towards Dions, and I'm sorry to her for that meaningless scuffle. I do understand that there were other problem instances which I referenced in the next section, but I thought I would only have to talk about them in length if asked. I now understand that to be a mistake, and will cover them in more detail.

The earliest problem I can remember was when Blutarch Mann said that someone's racist joke wasn't funny. Without reading the joke they were responding to beforehand I jokingly called him the "joke police" which lead to him calling me something in return. When an admin came in to defuse the situation and confirm that the joke wasn't funny I called them a "joke police" aswell. This is an example of me jumping in to make dumb jokes at bad times, and not fully paying attention to the conversation at hand. If un-banned this will absolutely stop. I believe after this issue was when the grace was given, as I had a private chat with an admin, but I didn't realize at the time that it was a second chance, and not just a hard suggestion to take good faith arguments in kind.

Next was when I carried a problem I had with OMJ's attitude in a Goon round over to the Discord a few days after it happened. I talked shit about OMJ behind his back very immaturely once at first by telling people how much he didn't care (I forget the exact wording). Then later on when the chat was discussing people that take the game too seriously, that's when I went in on him about how genuinely upsetting that round was for me, but I handled it in the worst possible way. I should have discussed this with him privately with an even temper as there were things that we both did wrong to each other that round, and having the argument publicly only served to embarrass us both. In the future I won't have any public arguments. I will talk things out with people privately if they agree to it.

The next was another run in with OMJ where he was in #General telling everyone about how bad the coronavirus was getting where he lived, and what that would mean for the rest of America. This was shortly before the virus went big in all of America if I recall correctly. A lot of what he said, the articles he linked, the pictures he sent, all backed up the big deal this was going to be, but I said it wasn't going to be that bad and called him a "fearmonger" for stirring everyone up. Obviously now I know he was right about damn near everything, and possibly instilled some logical fear in me that I needed. At the time though I didn't want the virus to be a big deal, and I wanted to calm the chat down. This was very selfish of me, and not once did I think of what OMJ could possibly be going through at the time. I had forgotten to be mindful of everyone in the chat, and will certainly do that in the future. For my actions then I am very sorry to OMJ. He was right.

In general I won't be participating in any further arguments in the Discord if un-banned. I'll distance myself from people that need their space. I'll stop with the passive aggressiveness. I won't give my opinion where it isn't needed.

If there's any problems you see about the way I act online, just let me know! I'm very receptive to criticism, and am always willing to improve as a person.

I care about the Goonstation Discord deeply, and the last thing I want to do is hurt the community. I just want to prove to everyone that I can be a positive influence on the community again.
#5
Kay i'm just going to be really honest here, because I don't think you're ready.
More than that I don't think we're ready.

I look at this appeal and your subsequent posts and I cannot shake the bad taste in my mouth that led to us agreeing to this little vacation- It's a taste of selfishness.
Your appeal hasn't much evolved from the one you posted mere days after your ban, and to me that shows that you might not fully understand it or what the issues involved are, so I'll do my best to break them down- i'll use your examples to explain this, but know that the underlying issues are not isolated, but generalised.

You mention the racist joke and the joke police thing.
Your explanation is that you didn't really pay attention, and that in the future you won't jump into things to make jokes like that- but it seems to me you're missing the point.
The point here is that racism is a zero tolerance issue, and one of the capital tenets of this community. The problem here is not your witty one-liner being mistimed or something, but rather that your first instinct to someone calling out a potentially harmful-to-the-community issue is to call them a spoil sport.
This amounts to putting your enjoyment ahead of the health of the community. Not bannable, but not positive.

You mention the spat about OMJ's gameplay, and say you will not have any public arguments- but again i feel like you're missing the point.
Anger happens, arguments happen, but gossiping and toxicity about players is only negative. We have systems in place and a whole moderation team at your disposal, but choosing to air that out in public chats was again kinda crappy. That ones pretty straightworward, you get it.

Here's the one I take the most issue with.
The incident with the corona "fearmongering".
This is the incident that tipped the vase for me. I've honestly rarely seen such a heartless display, completely devoid of empathy- and what cast a lot of smaller non-issues into a much darker light.
To me this screams red flags, that your reaction to a community member in distress was to belittle and "debate" them down with pedantic circular arguments about what is fearmongering and what is and is not proven. Your post here says he was right in hindsight- but that's not quite it. He was always right, because this community is cooperative and supportive, and we certainly don't respond to grief with that kind of callous indifference.
You're damn right it was selfish.

and then the spat with Dions which really was not a big deal at all, but kinda just cemented the idea that you really don't "get" the empathy thing- that someone in the throes of venting about the power structures that are actively ruining their lives *really* don't need or want to hear enlightened opinions from people comfortable enough to enjoy those power structures. You took an angry shout into the void and turned it into a thing all about YOU, instead of showing any shred of support, or better yet, just not making it worse.
Is being like this against the rules explicitly? probably not. Is it desirable? Hard no.

That was the cherry on top of a number of incredibly questionable instances of hit-and-run arguments, dropping condescending remarks at the expense of people who are suffering or otherwise hurting.
Oh, not to mention that one where you dropped that "Yeah, the weed keeps them chill" and uh fuckin dissipated when like 5 different people asked who the hell "them" is.
I've personally seen the 'positive influence' you brought to our discord, and i've seen the 'positive influence' you brought elsewhere too- and it's been hostility.
Sometimes its selfish hostility, sometimes indiscriminate hostility, and honestly just blindness to any sort of social issues.

Next time you decide to pick a fight with someone, think about why you're punching down at people who are already disadvantaged instead of using your fiery spunk to actually do some good. You have the potential to show that kind of care for people but instead you crack jokes at their expense, and I don't think our discord needs that.
Reapply when you think you want to un-do the harm you did.
#6
I appreciate your honesty warc. You're right. I didn't fully understand the reason behind the ban until it was detailed in your post. If I've got this right this time, the exact reasons I was banned were selfishness, a lack of empathy, condescension, and being publicly argumentative. I wish I was told about this bluntly instead of a ban being put in place as these are things that I can easily change.

(05-15-2020, 07:17 PM)warcrimes Wrote: Oh, not to mention that one where you dropped that "Yeah, the weed keeps them chill" and uh fuckin dissipated when like 5 different people asked who the hell "them" is. 

We were discussing weed dispensaries being classified as essential. Someone said that there would be riots if they closed, and that was my response. People that smoke weed would be too relaxed to riot if they had the ability to get it was the joke I was going for, but I apologize for any confusion on that. I did have to leave shortly after I made that comment.

I'd like to say that although I have had negative points as outlined by this thread that there has been a fair number of positives over the years as well. I'm not quite sure what you mean when you say the positive influence I am referring to is hostile. I'm also not sure where else you've seen my 'positive influence' either. It hurts to know that this is what you know me for.

(05-15-2020, 07:17 PM)warcrimes Wrote: Next time you decide to pick a fight with someone, think about why you're punching down at people who are already disadvantaged instead of using your fiery spunk to actually do some good. You have the potential to show that kind of care for people but instead you crack jokes at their expense, and I don't think our discord needs that. 
Reapply when you think you want to un-do the harm you did.


I absolutely disagree with the notion that I have ever punched down at the disadvantaged, or anyone for that matter. I also disagree with the notion that I am in any position to punch down myself. I have no idea where this came from.

I've sent this appeal out because I want to undo any and all harm I've caused over my time spent in the Discord server.
#7
Alright. I suppose this discussion is over. I'd like to thank the admins that participated for helping me recognize some of my personal character flaws that have negatively affected multiple acquaintances in the Discord. Lately I have been practicing keeping my composure and empathy active both online, and in person and I'm confident that progress is being made for the better. I've also decided to distance myself from the Goonstation community as a whole. I might be back to re-appeal/play in a few months, years, or maybe never. I haven't decided. What I have decided is that this is one of the best communities I have ever had even the slightest input in, and I thank you all for doing the things you do that keep this community (and game) great.


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