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Re: [tor-talk] Blocking Baseless Speculation

On Sat, Mar 07, 2015 at 01:28:19PM -0500, Libertas wrote:
> On Sat, Mar 07, 2015 at 09:40:59PM +0800, Virgil Griffith wrote:
> > > If a list stops fulfilling these criteria, people like us unsubscribe,
> > > leaving the list to its inevitable decline,
> > > destined to join the ever-lengthening roll of moribund, flame-filled
> > > lists that no longer exist or have ceased > to serve any useful function on
> > > the net.
> > 
> > I personally support more aggressive blocking of mad tinhatters.
> > 

Sorry, I disagree.  This forum-mentality really throws a wrench in the lessons
we (the online community) have learned over the past 30+ years.

The concept of 'banning' someone is found worthless on any sort of serious
inspection.  You aren't banning a person, but an email address.  The annoying
person simply creates a new email address, commence whack-a-mole.

Just because a piece of technology gives you the ability to do something,
doesn't mean exercising that ability is a good idea.  ref:
govt/Internet-mass-monitoring.  Banning someone makes the banner feel
self-righteous, but inflames the banned.  Free-speech suffers.

The correct answer has always been "Don't feed the trolls".  It works well.
Annoying people are simply attempting to elicit a response.  Upon failing to
get one, they move on [1].  People have a right to say whatever they want,
that's what free speech is.  The corollary to that is that no one has to

If you are *really* offended by a particular person's continuous rants, you
have many tools available to you.  Procmail the address to /dev/null, ignore
the thread in your mail client, blacklist the address in your addressbook,
etc.  The difference being, each person is choosing what to ignore, vice one
person choosing for everybody.

If you accept that banning causes email address rotation, then banning actually
breaks the ability of individuals to ignore trolls.

> Seconded. Allowing people to question the project is important, but the
> loonyism that we've had recently distracts people and drowns out
> legitimate discussion.

Until listmembers get in the habit of ignoring trolls, it may be helpful to
have recognized leaders on the list reply to trolls with a gentle reminder:
"Please don't feed the trolls."

Just my 2c.



[1] The most stubborn one I've ever seen was the anti-systemd troll on lkml
over the past year or so.  Rotating email addresses, etc.  But eventually, he
did give up.  I might agree with his point (but not his method), but lkml
didn't get him anywhere.  Out of probably 50 to 70 (maybe 100) emails, I don't
think he got a single response.  He was ignored by everyone just like the
patches that aren't for a subsystem you care about.
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