The Veritas Society

The Auditorium => Main Hall => Voting Forum => Topic started by: kobok on July 15, 2013, 01:50:38 PM

Title: Vote: Rule change to handle disruption
Post by: kobok on July 15, 2013, 01:50:38 PM
I think there is a broad recognition here that due to the nature of the topics we discuss here, we periodically attract some members with significant mental problems who look to these topics as explanations for their condition.  In mild cases we can be of some help in explaining the differences to them between what they experience and the things we practice here.  But we have observed a number of more severe cases where the persistent delusions people expressed here became a significant disruption, for example derailing many threads, filling up many forums, or significantly disrupting the chat.

We members of staff have been trying to deal with these on a case-by-case basis, but I think we would benefit by having a clearer rule to deal with this problem.  For this reason I would like to propose inserting the following rule, which we believe is sufficiently restrictive to only apply to severe cases:

"People expressing persistent, disruptive, and blatant delusions may be banned."

NOTE:  An alternate version of this proposal can be voted on at this link (http://forums.vsociety.net/index.php/topic,22105.0.html).
Title: Re: Vote: Rule change to handle disruption
Post by: Neeros on July 15, 2013, 02:47:27 PM
I think this rule could become a slippery slope of intolerance between what is regularly discussed here, and things outside of the scope of the collective beliefs of Veritas Society. If this rule is really seen as necessary perhaps it would be better to define delusion in the context of this new rule, as well as post examples.

To non-practitioners we are all considered delusional. It can be said that magic is the art of insanity, in that we remove ourselves from the consensus of humanities beliefs. Part of the definition of insanity is: "1.In a state of mind that prevents normal perception" which I think describes metaphysical practitioners quite well because we perceive things quite differently than what is considered "normal." How can we really define normal when it comes to defying all that is normal, with the only limit really being how far down the rabbit hole we go as practitioners. The definition of delusion is: "1.An idiosyncratic belief or impression that is firmly maintained despite being contradicted by what is generally accepted as reality,..." which also describes what we do quite well in that by our very existence we are a living contradiction to what is generally accepted as reality.

This rule could set a dangerous precedent, even though I have confidence that its intention is to only be able to deal with persistent disruption, if it is passed care must be taken to allow for drastically different world-views, and paradigms.

As for me, I am reserving my vote for when the issue is more clearly defined.
Title: Re: Vote: Rule change to handle disruption
Post by: Searcher on July 15, 2013, 02:58:18 PM
Personally I have 4 different names on here, you know two of them and as long as I never use them under the same IP then like always this is a useless face exercise.

And who makes the first push to ban, the one who gets told they are incorrect in their answer to some unwitting bod - follow me and my thoughts or %^%$ off because this is the power you are asking for, Hitler did the same thing when he was made chancellor in 1935, he created a threat and then asked for ultimate power and when he got it all hell was let loose because there was no one left to appose!

How many different names have you on here? and how many have others got!

Cheznips once said 'ignore Kobok he is a robot who is only let out now and then to get some air'! Unfortunately you are getting too much oxygen and your becoming delusional in grandeur. I hope other members see it as it is but other than this Kobok you could always ban me again and again and again and again etc.

Searcher
Just thinking how I would react..........but..........i'm delusional so it doesn't matter  :HA!: :HA!: :HA!:

I hate it when others put it so nicely. Well said Neeros! but not voting allows what you said you didn't want
Title: Re: Vote: Rule change to handle disruption
Post by: Neeros on July 15, 2013, 03:16:42 PM

The people referenced seem to suffer from severe schizophrenia that is untreated. There is a difference between a disagreement for whatever reason about the nature of reality that is perceived differently and people unable to perceive reality at all. Paradigm differences typically arise from viewing an objective set of facts differently in such a way that different conclusions are reached(which is why across metaphysical paradigms certain things are constant) where the problem is which one is the most accurate one; however, this is contingent on being able to clearly make observations about reality that people prone these mental illnesses just can't do because of no fault of their own. 

That is a good point, the ability to be objective with results is quite important.
Title: Re: Vote: Rule change to handle disruption
Post by: Searcher on July 15, 2013, 03:23:33 PM
So Rayn are you saying that everyone with a mental illness should be banned? So who is next everyone who perceived black or white? Are we then going to go down the corridor of religion and culture. By disability perhaps?

Are 4 legs better than 2 or are some 4 legs better than other 4 legs but not as good as 2 - napoleon is a farmer in Russia. (according to George Orwell)

Title: Re: Vote: Rule change to handle disruption
Post by: kobok on July 15, 2013, 03:34:55 PM
To non-practitioners we are all considered delusional.

That would only be the case for a fraction of people who irrationally categorize things as delusional if they conflict with their beliefs.  This is not the sort of situation being dealt with here.

The definition of delusion is:

The definition of just "delusion" as I see it is, "a fixed false belief that is resistant to reason or confrontation with actual fact" or "a belief held in the face of evidence to the contrary, that is resistant to all reason".  The core keys are that it is clearly false, and that it is resistant to reason and the presentation of actual facts.  But the proposed rule does not even ban all delusion, as that would be potentially too sweeping.  Instead it creates a category only for "persistent, disruptive, and blatant" delusion.  "Blatant" means it would only apply when it is overwhelmingly clear.  "Persistent" means it should only apply when it continues repeatedly and remains resistant to reason and presentation of actual facts.  And "disruptive" is as discussed above, where it is not an incidental case but interfering with normal conversation and discussion.  Simple disagreements about beliefs will not be able to meet any of those thresholds.

Additionally, we have the existing rule, "Be respectful of other systems, styles, and approaches."  This rule will continue in effect, and will not be altered at all by the proposed new rule.  There is a vast difference between "other systems, styles, and approaches", which will continue to be encouraged and respected, and "persistent, disruptive, and blatant delusions" which will be dealt with so that they do not continue disrupting valuable discussion.  A person coming along with a different sort of system or approach which we are not sure if it works or is valid could not be banned under this rule.  That would instead be an encouraged discussion to evaluate the new approach.  True persistent and blatant delusion is generally obvious to just about everyone here, and such people tend to end up with discussions that deteriorate to senselessness, as their disordered thinking tends to result in a spiral of contradictions to basic facts even of things that everyone has just seen happen.

(For the sake of some basic respect I do not want to single anyone out by pointing to specific examples in this thread.  The goal isn't shaming, but preserving a high caliber of discussion.  But if the above description does not clarify the matter, I'm sure just about any moderator can describe several specific examples in private.  We have faced this a lot.)

So Rayn are you saying that everyone with a mental illness should be banned?

I don't believe he proposed that.  And that sort of extremism is not under consideration, not on the table, and would be strongly opposed by the staff here, as well as most members.  For example things like depression and anxiety disorders are among the most common mental illnesses, and have nothing to do with the types of problems being discussed here.  The proposed rule is intentionally narrow to describe a category of disruption we experience here.
Title: Re: Vote: Rule change to handle disruption
Post by: Neeros on July 15, 2013, 03:59:21 PM
I am pretty sure I know where you guys are coming from, I was just questioning the policy for public clarification to make sure it is a balanced approach, and it seems like it will be. I haven't ever had any issues with the moderation on this forum in the past.

To non-practitioners we are all considered delusional.

That would only be the case for a fraction of people who irrationally categorize things as delusional if they conflict with their beliefs.  This is not the sort of situation being dealt with here.

The definition of delusion is:

The definition of just "delusion" as I see it is, "a fixed false belief that is resistant to reason or confrontation with actual fact" or "a belief held in the face of evidence to the contrary, that is resistant to all reason".  The core keys are that it is clearly false, and that it is resistant to reason and the presentation of actual facts.  But the proposed rule does not even ban all delusion, as that would be potentially too sweeping.  Instead it creates a category only for "persistent, disruptive, and blatant" delusion.  "Blatant" means it would only apply when it is overwhelmingly clear.  "Persistent" means it should only apply when it continues repeatedly and remains resistant to reason and presentation of actual facts.  And "disruptive" is as discussed above, where it is not an incidental case but interfering with normal conversation and discussion.  Simple disagreements about beliefs will not be able to meet any of those thresholds.

Additionally, we have the existing rule, "Be respectful of other systems, styles, and approaches."  This rule will continue in effect, and will not be altered at all by the proposed new rule.  There is a vast difference between "other systems, styles, and approaches", which will continue to be encouraged and respected, and "persistent, disruptive, and blatant delusions" which will be dealt with so that they do not continue disrupting valuable discussion.  A person coming along with a different sort of system or approach which we are not sure if it works or is valid could not be banned under this rule.  That would instead be an encouraged discussion to evaluate the new approach.  True persistent and blatant delusion is generally obvious to just about everyone here, and such people tend to end up with discussions that deteriorate to senselessness, as their disordered thinking tends to result in a spiral of contradictions to basic facts even of things that everyone has just seen happen.

(For the sake of some basic respect I do not want to single anyone out by pointing to specific examples in this thread.  The goal isn't shaming, but preserving a high caliber of discussion.  But if the above description does not clarify the matter, I'm sure just about any moderator can describe several specific examples in private.  We have faced this a lot.)

So Rayn are you saying that everyone with a mental illness should be banned?

I don't believe he proposed that.  And that sort of extremism is not under consideration, not on the table, and would be strongly opposed by the staff here, as well as most members.  For example things like depression and anxiety disorders are among the most common mental illnesses, and have nothing to do with the types of problems being discussed here.  The proposed rule is intentionally narrow to describe a category of disruption we experience here.

Title: Re: Vote: Rule change to handle disruption
Post by: Searcher on July 15, 2013, 04:04:53 PM
Sorry Kobok but I disagree with you and as long as I am a member(?) I will stand up against this type of discrimination, call it and wrap it up as you might but it is discrimination.

Lets be honest here; this as been thrown at me three times in the last week so no guesses allowed about what this is really about. Are you really going to stop all UK member just for me (PS I'm not in Sheffield as my IP suggests). In front of people who know some basics about computers you really are missing your own point, how are you going to enforce a ban? OK, forget about my skills and what I can do (what was it you said ..."you can hurt people?" So unless you have deleted my PM's, it is still on/in there) you pm'ed me 2 years ago saying this?)

Yes Rayn did mean it that way:

"where the problem is which one is the most accurate one; however, this is contingent on being able to clearly make observations about reality that people prone these mental illnesses just can't do because of no fault of their own."

So OK not banned but here in the UK and Europe this comment would not be tolerated and it is only the tip of the slippery slope you are wanting to take this forum down

Searcher
Title: Re: Vote: Rule change to handle disruption
Post by: Steve on July 15, 2013, 05:14:08 PM
I'm sorry but I do not approve. I know it's hard and it takes time, but difficult scenarios should be handled on a case by case basis.

If the people are already being disruptive and derailing threads, then isn't that already cause enough to do something without having to care about whether they are delusional as well? Persistent and disruptive are great criteria, but as Neeros says I don't think delusional should be considered a criteria because to a "normal person" the belief in magic is delusional regardless of what we've experienced and done in our own metaphysical lives. Plus, even if the person is perfectly in a right state of mind, if they are being persistently disruptive, then isn't that the problem? :)

Of course, derailed conversations are a normal part of life, so where do we draw the line between normal derailment versus disruptive derailment? The "resistant to counter argument or facts" part would certainly be a good point, but then, that's normal for an argument too.

And furthermore, if we wanted to, we could just ignore it. For instance, with Infinite_Light's sudden evangelizing in the "making a rapport with whoever" thread, all of us who replied to him could have chosen instead to ignore him. I don't know if that's one of the "examples" that spurred kobok to suggest this rule change, but I'm going to use it anyway due to the way that multiple people reacted to it.

Sure, sometimes it's annoying to have to deal with people that I/we don't see eye-to-eye with (I know I've annoyed plenty of people, myself ^_^), but that's a normal part of socializing and we really should get used to it rather than trying to just throw it away from ourselves in the hopes that we don't have to deal with it.

Unless I'm missing something, I haven't seen anything in the forums as of late that is worse than things we've already seen in the past.

~Steve
Title: Re: Vote: Rule change to handle disruption
Post by: Trowa on July 15, 2013, 05:30:14 PM
I like the idea.  I think the non-staff here would probably appreciate the following wording, however:  "People expressing persistent, disruptive, and blatant delusions may be banned, if the problematic behavior persists after sufficient warning is given."  I, personally, don't think that this wouldn't happen anyway, but it might not hurt to throw it in anyway.
Title: Re: Vote: Rule change to handle disruption
Post by: Shinichi on July 15, 2013, 05:33:09 PM
No.

To be perfectly blunt: Not one person on this forum, administration or otherwise, scientific background or otherwise, psychic capacity or otherwise, has the authority or the capability to judge anyone on a forum as truly delusional. That is something that can only be judged after a thorough psychological evaluation, and to think that any moderator or administrator of this forum has the capacity to perform that evaluation simply based on a few emotionally charged forum posts is incorrect, arrogant, and such a belief might be called a form of delusion in and of its self by some.

Plus, I have seen nothing disruptive from anyone that would be judged delusional by this rule. I have simply seen people who typically choose to believe things which Veritas does not believe in. To call that choice a delusion, regardless of what led to it, is an insult to those people and a direct violation of the rule that protects against that.

I agree with Steve. If someone is being disruptive and spamming, then deal with that person as an individual, based on the disruption and the spamming. But the leaders of this forum should have no right to toss about bans based on biased, most likely emotionally charged, personal belief-based psychological evaluations of its members.



~:Shin:~
Title: Re: Vote: Rule change to handle disruption
Post by: Koujiryuu on July 15, 2013, 06:37:32 PM
Disapprove as much as I'd like to get medieval on asses and ban everyone I don't like who I think is delusional.

I *do* think experienced moderators and practitioners here can accurately make this judgement. However, as already stated, to outsiders ALL of our beliefs, even just the belief in energy, IS delusional.

I see nothing wrong with banning people who are frequently disruptive, derail threads, and flaunt moderator authority. Again, though, I think this isn't necessary because it's circumstantial, and what is real to one man is not real to another. We can't be biased in what does and doesn't apply.

Honestly, I'm surprised you suggested this kobok, because usually you're the one telling ME to be more lenient and accepting of others, including people who I frequently regard as delusional or adding nothing of value to the forums.

Since this must have taken place in the chat and I haven't been in it I guess I'm missing a big part of it, but I have one educated guess on who caused the disturbance.... Kalki =P
Title: Re: Vote: Rule change to handle disruption
Post by: kobok on July 15, 2013, 08:22:27 PM
Please note, an alternate version of this proposal can be voted on at this link (http://forums.vsociety.net/index.php/topic,22105.0.html).
Title: Re: Vote: Rule change to handle disruption
Post by: Steve on July 17, 2013, 04:10:07 PM
Okay, so not having seen the problems first hand in the chat room, I would still like to suggest that any rule focuses more on disruption than on delusion, as relevant.

If no conversation is taking place except for one person ranting to themselves and the wind, going from one thought to a wildly different one, without interrupting anyone then I think most of us would agree that it's probably not a big deal.

However, if any number of people are having a discussion, especially one on topic to these forums, and someone else jumps in with completely nonsensical or random statements that not only do nothing to add to the discussion, but even distract people away from the main discussion, then certainly I think the disruption should or could be properly handled with a warning then a kick then a ban, skipping any steps as necessary, as normal. Regardless of whether the person is diagnosed with a mental illness/incapacity or not.

Sometimes people, like myself, are just in a random mood, and if I, without any sort of delusional thinking or diagnosis, start disrupting an otherwise good conversation by throwing in random statements (or bash quotes ;)) then I should be warned and then silenced so as to not disturb the conversation.

I'm all for adding a rule against "disrupting a good conversation with utter nonsense". It's just the word delusion that I am wary of, as conversations can be derailed by non-delusions as well. In my opinion, I think that one word needlessly narrows the rule too much in one specific direction.

~Steve
Title: Re: Vote: Rule change to handle disruption
Post by: Mind_Bender on July 17, 2013, 11:12:44 PM
No. You can't judge delusion by words written. It's like judging someones intellect by their fashion sense- you can be the smartest person in the state and still have tattooes of scribbles and dress like a Hell's Angel. Months and years of psychological and nutritous counseling and personal attention need to be considered before we can assume someone is delusional. Banning somone for redundandant off post annoyance, on the the other hand, more power to you.

Plus, this is a website dedicated to the discussion and practice of spiritual and energetic technologies, fraught with arguments and simple word games with almost 20,000 members all, or most, of us with pseudonymns and personalized sigils, favorite anime characters and a host of other avatars- we are nothing more, oldschool staff to new member, than kids, dweebs, freaks, devil worshippers and people with too much time on our hands to people in the outside world.

Even the ancient and modern masters of science and metaphysics say there is a fine line between a mystic and a schizoid.
Title: Re: Vote: Rule change to handle disruption
Post by: Impervious on July 18, 2013, 12:39:25 AM
Saying "Nobody can tell who is delusional online" is missing the point entirely, in my opinion. Quite frankly, we don't care how delusional or disruptive you are or are not in your day-to-day life; we care how delusional or disruptive you come across as on THIS forum. Whether someone seems to be delusional and disruptive (this phrase hereby condensed to just "delusional", for brevity) because of some sort of mental illness, because of drug use, because of "one bad day", or because they just feel like acting that way is completely irrelevant. With that previous sentence in mind, we aren't trying to attack people with delusional disorders, we are trying to limit the number of persistently delusional people on our forums, -whatever their reasons for being delusional may be- for sake of making conversing as easy as possible.

In case the above isn't clear enough: The goal of this rule is to eliminate a certain kind of behavior; the goal is not to discriminate against a certain type of mentally ill people. In this sense, this rule is no different from any of the other rules we have.

Whether or not we can accurately determine that someone suffers from persistent delusional disorders in real life can be debated. However, we can certainly determine whether or not someone's forum behavior falls into these criteria with essentially perfect accuracy, as long as the rules are clear enough to those enforcing them. If you cannot recognize delusional thinking by reading what a delusional person types, then you simply aren't trying hard enough. I agree that forum posts aren't necessarily an accurate gauge of the way people are in their real lives, but that isn't what we care about here. :P

All of that being said, I am abstaining from these votes until the wording is more concrete. I trust the staff to only ban people in the correct circumstances, but I don't feel comfortable approving a rule that most of the members (those who have voiced their opinions so far, at least) think means something different from its stated goal. Everyone should be able to perfectly understand the rules, so that everyone can make sure they aren't breaking them. I am likely to approve a future vote, should the point of the rule be even further clarified.
Title: Re: Vote: Rule change to handle disruption
Post by: kobok on July 18, 2013, 05:48:24 PM
You can't judge delusion by words written

Honestly, yes you very much can.  Anyone who has moderated here for at least a few years should be able to spot delusional behavior from quite some distance a way.  Not only are there readily available sets of diagnostic criteria for identifying psychosis based on written words, but we've seen so much of it that it has become very easy to spot, especially in the obvious/blatant cases.  Such problems have very little to do with what someone is talking about (so there are no concerns about magical beliefs being misinterpreted), and a whole lot more to do with how they are speaking and interacting with everyone.

And as Rhetorices said, it's the behavior here that matters, because it's the behavior here that affects this community.  So it is perfectly legitimate to look at the behavior here to see if they are causing a persistent disruption from blatantly delusional behavior.
Title: Re: Vote: Rule change to handle disruption
Post by: Mind_Bender on July 19, 2013, 03:46:47 PM
I already posted in another thread that further elaborates my opinion, so I will just say that I understand what you all are trying to do and that it is a benefit to this community, and I respect that, but delusion is a strong word. If they are not delusional in there day to day affairs, they are not delusional, but an annoyance.

Maybe there are ways to pinpoint delusional behavior from written work, but then again, some people that seem like loons online are actually very sane people, they just can't write to save their lives. I have seen posts with so many typos it gives me a headache and makes the poster sound mentally off, but they just don'tknow what words to use, how to spell or anything about grammar.

Plus, the moderators views and communities views (peoples personal perceptions in general) of what delusion is and how we can 'diagnose' it online are nothing but opinions. I have been called delusional a couple times on this (and other forums) and I know I am not, so how hpw can you honestly judge delusion? You cannot, you can only lend a educated guess.

This is longer than I thought, sorry.

Why are you so concerned with keeping the word delusion anyway? Are you delusional and projecting it? Have you been mistreated by  delusional?

I think a few of us here are just upset over the wording- find a word other than delusion or any other mental diagnostic word that gets the point across and I am sure this new rule will pass without such dissent.
Title: Re: Vote: Rule change to handle disruption
Post by: kobok on July 19, 2013, 08:37:42 PM
I have been called delusional a couple times on this (and other forums) and I know I am not

Certainly.  I don't think you are either.

Myself, I have at some time over the years been called each of delusional, a troll, obscene, hateful, threatening, disrespectful, and so forth.  And I've been accused by SOMEONE of violating just about every rule we have.  But so what?  We're not trying to make rules that are implemented by fools with poor judgment.  If people are going to use poor judgment, then they could find an excuse to ban you under ANY set of rules.

We're just trying to find a set of guidelines that moderators we continually select for good judgment can use to keep the forum and chat discussions sane, amicable, and informative.
Title: Re: Vote: Rule change to handle disruption
Post by: Mind_Bender on July 19, 2013, 10:05:42 PM
We're just trying to find a set of guidelines that moderators we continually select for good judgment can use to keep the forum and chat discussions sane, amicable, and informative.

I support that completely, and sorry if I have been coming off as distasteful toward you and coming off as a word nazi, I just think the wording could be better because delusion and nonsense come close, but you can't be diagnosed with nonsense.
Title: Re: Vote: Rule change to handle disruption
Post by: kobok on July 20, 2013, 09:00:31 PM
I support that completely, and sorry if I have been coming off as distasteful toward you and coming off as a word nazi, I just think the wording could be better because delusion and nonsense come close, but you can't be diagnosed with nonsense.

I think it's a healthy discussion to have, and I take no offense at it.  And even if it comes to pass as worded in one of the proposals, I think the discussion has helped us form a better consensus on how it should be interpreted and implemented.
Title: Re: Vote: Rule change to handle disruption
Post by: kobok on July 22, 2013, 06:16:01 PM
Superseded by alternate (http://forums.vsociety.net/index.php/topic,22105.0.html).