Friday, June 20, 2014

In this post, I critique a Goon perspective on how to handle tropers with Autism

Recently, the SA paywall dropped, so I went into their TV Tropes mock thread to see if they had anything to say about All The Tropes.

Nope, just walls of tl;dr about how much bronies are creepy (okay, I can't say I disagree) and tropers are perverts and pedophiles (SA's stock accusation about tropers.....though they seem to want to forget they had an actual pedophile on their own mod team for almost five years).


However, I did find this post interesting, since it mentions a member of our site I'm quite pleased with, and who had a bad time on TV Tropes.


Below is the content of the post, post text in italics, my comments in bold.

----



That was something that stood out to me about Miss Aspie, 23, Desperately Seeks Husband, actually.

The thing is, if you're modding on a site that's pretty much Let's List Things Dot Com, you're going to get a certain amount of ASD in your natural readership. Being able to handle that should be a basic skill for mods. But if you look at the exchange... well, let's look at the exchange.

quote:

    Ecclytennysmithylove posted:

    If it's because I've been moving some several DMOS posts to their own DMOS pages, then I apologize. I was giving the DMOS pages some clean up.

    I promise I'll put them in folders instead.

At this point, she's being polite, if a bit confused. This would be the moment to say 'Thanks for your courtesy but the ban stands' and shut down the discussion before it escalates.




Ecclytennysmithylove is a troper on All The Tropes who is basically doing the organization on our site she tried to do on TV Tropes, which is much appreciated, but given how TV Tropes uses a different organization scheme, I can mostly understand why her actions upset the mods, but a ban for something done in good faith strikes me as ridiculous. However, since it's their site, their rules, I can't say I disagree with the logic of the above statement on how the situation should have been handled.

quote:

    Fighteer posted:

    ~Ecclytennysmithylove: Your enthusiasm is appreciated, but you've been continually drawing attention to yourself by doing things that aren't necessary or are straight up incorrect, then disregarding people asking you to stop. Recently there was a flap over you getting Needs More Love confused with Needs Wiki Magic Love, and just now the DMOS thing. Just because three examples is the minimum for a subpage doesn't mean you need to make one every time a work acquires that many.

    This keeps happening. You're on your third suspension, and there was a separate report after the last one that you were posting cut Real Life examples from the Panty Shot article on its Discussion page.

    I'm just not seeing a pattern of understanding our rules.


Ahhh.....Fighteer, one of my favorite TV Tropes mods. Only second to Fast Eddie in being a douche to people. However, he is being fairly polite at this point, so I can give him that. As for the stuff he's complaing about, I always hated the "three strikes you're out" rule on TV Tropes, especially for people who are trying to edit in good faith, which, based on my own examination of her edits on TV Tropes, she was. I especially hate how unlike Wikipedia, which bends as many efforts to help newbies past their mistakes until they improve or prove unwilling to learn, TV Tropes has a hard limit of three chances, no matter what, which I feel is unrealistic as a limit for how long it takes before an editor learns proper wiki etiquette.

All right, it's an explanation. Fair enough. Considering the ASD-attracting content, though, you really need to add 'So the ban stands' to make it clear, otherwise it sounds like an argument, not laying down the law.

quote:

    Ecclytennysmithylove posted:

    I've became a member of Tvtropes since November 2013, so I'm new to the rules. sad

    As for the Needs More Love, why can't we just make a new trope Needs More Episodes?

    And as for the Panty Shots, I didn't post Real Life examples, I posted Anime/Manga examples in the discussion page. Somebody must've hacked into my account and posted Real Life examples.



Since the discussion page in question had this info hosed, I can't tell one way or the other who's telling the truth here, but considering how terrible TV Tropes' password security is, I'd be willing to buy her explanation until proof otherwise presents itself. Also, she admitted she's new to the rules, and I'm a fan of the Wikipedia "Don't Bite The Newbies" guideline, which TV Tropes lacks.


And sure enough, she picked up on the explicit content of the mod's reply, not the implied 'no'. This is the point to say, 'Sorry, but this is not up for discussion. I've explained the ban, and it stands.'

quote:

    Fighteer posted:

    I've talked to the other mods and the consensus is that it's not worth it to deal with your messes. Six months is more than enough time for most people to learn how the site works, so the fact that it's taken you this long to figure it out — after two prior suspensions, no less — is indicative of a problem on your end, not ours. We're not going to go through it a fourth time.

    Sorry, your suspension won't be lifted. You may read the wiki, but may not edit.

    Edit: I erred in the Panty Shot thing. It wasn't Real Life examples; it was examples, period. The article is under an examples lockout, so circumventing that by putting them in the Discussion page is an intentional rules violation.


Given how Fighteer is merely enforcing the censorship forced on TV Tropes by their advertisers, I can't exactly say he's wrong here, but he could've been less of an ass about it.


Okay, well done, Fighteer. That was the right course of action. Now, considering that she's clearly desperate to get her editing privileges back and tends to argue with the reasons while ignoring the 'no', this is the point to stop engaging with her. You've laid down the law, leave it at that.

quote:

    Ecclytennysmithylove posted:

    *sigh* Fine... But that also means I'm not going to continue moving some marked tropes to YMMV/Trivia pages. sad *bangs myself on the wall until theirs blood coming out of my head*.

    I didn't know that putting the Panty Shot examples in the Discussion page was an intentional rules violation. You could've at least insert the rules about no inserting examples in the Discussion page in the first place.


To be fair, her reaction is a bit melodramatic, I'll admit that, but she does make a perfectly good point about how discussion pages for problematic pages should probably have notes about this sort of thing.


Oh dear. This is the point where you might start to worry about her, what with the blood and all. Either tell her to get help or stop engaging: prolonging the extinction burst isn't going to help either of you.

quote:

    Fighteer posted:

    This is exactly what we're talking about. Most people, seeing a message on the article reading "No examples, please" would realize that we mean No examples, please. Not you, apparently, which is part of the reason we're here. You aren't the only person who's able to transplant YMMV and Trivia examples, either.


In this, I'm going to again give Fighteer some credit. "No examples, please" is a good warning not to post any, but a better idea would be the post WHY you don't want any examples. Yeah, that might seem a little unnecessary to some, but just a brief message not to post examples does little to explain why you shouldn't. Also, to eliminate ambiguity, a better message would be "Do Not Post Examples For This Trope".



No, no, no. You've made your reasons clear and anybody sensible reading them would understand your point. Repeating them only lets her know that you're going to keep talking as long as she does. Does she really come across as someone who'll let you have the last word? The girl is escalating. For her sake and yours, stop now and give her some space to calm down.

quote:

    Ecclytennysmithylove posted:

    Well, since this is the third I've been suspended, I take responsibilities for my actions, and I'd rather be better off moving marked tropes to YMMV/Trivia pages than not realizing that I'm breaking the rules.


On this one, I have to agree with her. She realizes what she needs to avoid and wants to stick to something safe and even recommended to do by the TVT manual of style in return for being able to edit again. Since she's trying to help out in good faith, this is the point where I'd let her edit again and tell to stick to doing that.



This, Fighteer does have the sense to ignore. But then she gets it going again...

quote:

    Ecclytennysmithylove posted:

    Ok, after a long hour or two of reading the TVtrope Rules, I'm ready to be un-suspended. I vow myself that I will NOT do anything else other than moving marked tropes to the YMMV/Trivia pages.


At this point, I'd give her another chance. Then again, unlike Fighteer and the goons, I believe in good faith.

LEAVE IT ALONE. LEAVE IT ALONE. This discussion isn't going to go anywhere you want it to, Fighteer. She's telling you loud and clear that she either doesn't accept or doesn't understand that mods can ban people for whatever reason they choose and it's not up to the ban-ee to change that. The more you talk to her, the more you confirm her impression that it's negotiable.


Alright, score one point for the Goons here. TVT mods can ban you for whatever reason and do so quite often, and the logic they present is hard to argue. However, she did not know this.


quote:

    Fighteer posted:

    @Ecclytennysmithylove: Not only are you not persuading me, sending me PMs pointing out issues with the wiki that you "could be fixing" is only going to make me turn off those privileges as well. If you want to retain any ability to access the wiki, you would do well to accept our decision.


Fighteer, yet again you prove all that crap on that page you have on ED is actually true.


Just stop. You are talking to someone who ignores every 'no' and every warning you give her and verbally self-harms at you. You do not have to reply to her PMs. Either ignore her or ban her. Telling her not to do something does not work, it keeps her engaged.


I'm torn at this point. On one hand, this is sound logic. On the other hand, agreeing with the Goons on this topic makes me feel like I'm condoning Fighteer being a jackass.

quote:

    Ecclytennysmithylove posted:

    ....then I'm going to regret that I joined TV Tropes.... sad

    UPDATE: Last night, I sent an email to the thestaff@tvtropes.org to appeal my suspension. If the resulting decision doesn't turn out what I expect, then I regret that I became a member of TVTropes.

    I thought you guys weren't suppose to make me feel bad and distance myself from the site. I trusted you. I'm 23 years old single woman who's desperately searching for a husband. I was diagnosed with Aspergers syndrome at the age of 10, and I sometimes lose my temper whenever things don't go right, though I'm slowly getting better.


 Okay, bit too much TMI here, but being autistic myself, we find it bit hard to restrain our urge to say this kind of stuff. Not an excuse, we do need to control that better, but I understand her motivations here. From her perspective, she's trying to explain herself emotionally, not realizing it would not have the intended effect of making the other party sympathetic.

Ohhh dear. At this point all becomes clear: she's Aspie and very possibly depressed, or at least miserable, and is not going to let go of any hope of a place she might belong. Continually telling her 'no' isn't going to get through. What it is going to do is make her more upset. She's going to have to go through a grieving process, and you need to let her start on it.

We make fun of people on this site, yes, but this is the moment where a Something Awful mod would do two things: ban her to put everyone out of their misery, and add a note in the banning saying 'You should get some psychological help.' Because that's what she actually needs to be told.


And this is the part where the Goon who wrote this wins the Shithead Awards. First off, as someone with Aspergers myself, I object to their derogatory use of the term "aspie". Yeah, I have laughed at it in other circumstances, won't deny it, and I'm not pissed over being called this myself (I have a fairly thick skin), but in this case, using it as easy reason to dismiss someone as needing psychological help and saying they should be cast out on their ass with a "go away you lunatic" message is just the height of asshattery.

Also, you lying bastards, you're members of the same site that has viciously trolled people to suicide in the name of a few laughs at their expense, don't even pretend to have any moral high ground here.


quote:

    Madrugada posted:

    You thought wrong. Our job isn't to make sure you don't feel bad. Our job is to protect the wiki. And what your life is or isn't is not really anything we can do anything about. The "poor me" card has no value.


Alright, this is somewhat less assholey than Fighteer's responses, and I can't say I disagree with this.


Oooh, oooh, I know this one: she's using the 'poor me' card! It's a trope! Categorise it!

Really, this is just lovely. You don't have to comfort her, but you're supposed to be a hugbox - the least you could do would be to say 'Sorry for your personal problems, but...' And considering that this is a list site that purports to be all nice, you really ought to have a few standard places like autism support groups and the Samaritans' e-mail at the ready for situations like this. It'd save you trouble, and it might help someone.


This is actually a pretty good point, and I must acknowledge the Goons have unassailable logic here.


gently caress the person, save the tropes!

quote:

    Ecclytennysmithylove posted:

    Well, you guys are really helping me getting over my problem. smile

    And you're right about the "poor me" card having no value, but it's the truth about me. I've also been a victim of emotional abuse in past (as mentioned in my Doctor Who DMOS post on the episode "Father's Day"). Example: being insulted by someone because of my poor communication.


This kid needs help. You don't have to give it, but at least tell her to get it.


I'd be a less of a dick about this sentiment, but fair enough.

quote:

    Madrugada posted:

    We're not going to lift your wiki-editing ban. The point that matters is that however well-intentioned you are, you're making messes that have to be cleaned up by someone else. That doesn't make the wiki better, it makes it worse and it means someone else has to do extra work just to bring it back to the condition it was in before.


And this is why I laughing my ass off at the fact TV Tropes uses (a heavily customized) PmWiki, which has no easy rollback features or fine grained revision control. Those two features alone would make any messes she makes effortless to clean up on that, so giving her grief over TV Tropes horribly customized software limitations is just a douche thing to say.

Also, it's a wiki. I would just keep advising her what mistakes not to repeat and being patient with her....oh wait, I have done that with her on our wiki and she's turning out to be a great editor.......who knew a little patience and compassion could go a long way?

Madrugada, Fighteer told her that exact same thing already. Did it solve the situation?

quote:

    Ecclytennysmithylove posted:

    What did I just say before? "I vow to myself that I will NOT do anything else other than moving the marked tropes to the YMMV/Trivia pages." That is a promise. I've changed for good.

    And because you turned down my appeal, I'm going drown my sorrow and regret that I became a member of TV Tropes the whole time. My mother was right. I should've NEVER trusted anybody on the internet, especially you guys. SOME HELPFUL MODERATORS YOU ARE! >

    (Unless you've changed your mind.)


Alright, in defense of TV Tropes, this reads like "Flouncing a Website.txt", but in her defense, they weren't all that nice about how they handled things. 



I honestly can't blame her for keeping on arguing by this point, because they've given her every reason to assume they'll keep answering her as long as she keeps posting.


Honestly, I can't disagree with this.

Anywhere on the Net is going to get some ASD-issues people, some of whom will be able to cope and some of whom won't. A site with this much traffic and this much about categorising nerdy stuff ought to have a well-established protocol for dealing with an Aspie meltdown. If they were new to modding you could understand some mistakes, but they've had years of practice. If they were a mock site, they might be excused for not caring at all when someone says they're terribly unhappy, but this is supposed to be a fun happy place. And this is the way they deal with it.


This is actually a great conclusion and a good point. When I founded All The Tropes, I was aware we might get some tropers with autism, especially since I have it myself, and being one myself, TV Tropes really should have a way of dealing with this easier, and as this points out, they've had long enough to figure out how to deal with this.

-------

Thankfully, it does seem that Goons do have enough self awareness to realize when they cross a line, as illustrated by these words from the very next poster, Namtab.

Apple Tree posted:

A site with this much traffic and this much about categorising nerdy stuff ought to have a well-established protocol for dealing with an Aspie meltdown. If they were new to modding you could understand some mistakes, but they've had years of practice.

It'd be nice if they did and all, but they're honestly under no obligation to plus, frankly, people don't properly understand learning disabilities and difficulties.

I can make fun of TVTropes for many many reasons, and I have done for several years, but (and this is me speaking as a nearly qualified Learning Disability Nurse) I can't fault them for not tailoring their moderation to suit people with AS. Your breakdown of her behaviour and reactions is quite good, and you're right that TVTropes is likely to have a higher population ASD population, but expecting moderators anywhere to be trained in handling ASD issues is wishful thinking. This is especially true seeing as it's a free gig that you just do as a fan of the community.


True enough all the above, but it still would not kill the TV Tropes mods to realize us autistic types are drawn to this sort of site like files to honey and when it becomes obvious you are dealing with one, don't be such an ass about it.


Either way let's stop here. Remember rule 5:


quote:

5) Don't try to psychoanalyze tropers.
These posts are boring. No one cares about how you learned what the Dunning-Kruger effect is in Intro to Psych. There is a perfectly good psychology thread is SAL you can post in for that.

when you get to this point

quote:

Ohhh dear. At this point all becomes clear: she's Aspie and very possibly depressed, or at least miserable, and is not going to let go of any hope of a place she might belong. Continually telling her 'no' isn't going to get through. What it is going to do is make her more upset. She's going to have to go through a grieving process, and you need to let her start on it.
you're going too far. You're going beyond the words written down and trying to diagnose, which isn't really a good idea and is frankly quite unprofessional to do online wrt someone you've never interacted with

Hats off to you, Namtab.  Seriously, if all Goons had this level of reflection, maybe I'd think better of Goons as a whole.

No comments:

Post a Comment