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-   -   Request: Defining Insults as per the Forum Rules (http://forums.animesuki.com/showthread.php?t=122845)

Wild Goose 2013-11-10 03:13

Defining Insults as per the Forum Rules
 
With regard to the above, the Forum Rules point 1.2 state:
Quote:

Originally Posted by Forum Rules
"Insults, harassment, flaming, trolling, baiting or other similar abusive behaviour towards other members of The Forum will not be tolerated. This includes the use of "retort images". Images used to convey a "come back" message (i.e. to "retort") are forbidden in all areas of The Forum, they are often offensive and only serve to ignite flame wars."

Now that's all fine and well, and in the abstract there's nothing objectionable about that. However, that then brings up the question of what is considered an insult, and how that term is defined in the day-to-day Asuki use.

I figured I'd bring this up because I've been tempbanned twice (in May and August of this year) for making statements which, as a Malaysian, my culture does not consider insults.* The mods pointed out that this is Asuki and we follow Asuki rules; fair enough, but given that the definition of insult appears vague and subjective, the former prospective lawyer in me would prefer that there be some black and white as to what is, and is not considered an insult.

I'm not looking for any quarrels or arguments, but merely to open up a dialogue. The spoiler policy was quite clarified and improved last year given the dialogue between staff and forum members, so I'm hoping perhaps something similar can come out of this.

*This then opens up the whole question of whether there's a fixed standard of conduct/morality applied globally, or if we subscribe to a concept of flexible morality as dictated by local society mores, but if we get into that we're going to be stuck here all weekend, so I'd rather not open that can of worms.

Daniel E. 2013-11-10 03:42

Quote:

given that the definition of insult appears vague and subjective, the former prospective lawyer in me would prefer that there be some black and white as to what is, and is not considered an insult.
It can be sometimes difficult to know/understand what may or may not offend someone from a different culture or country. My suggestion here is to either avoid personal remarks of any kind or take the time to really know the other person and understand better how not to offend them.

*A few examples of what I would consider offensive without using "insults" per see:

- You are not smart enough to follow this show
- Pay more attention next time you watch an episode
- Why are you still posting here?


All insulting in their own way, all you really need to start an argument with someone.

monir 2013-11-10 03:44

Quote:

Originally Posted by Wild Goose (Post 4903525)

I figured I'd bring this up because I've been tempbanned twice (in May and August of this year) for making statements which, as a Malaysian, my culture does not consider insults.* The mods pointed out that this is Asuki and we follow Asuki rules; fair enough, but given that the definition of insult appears vague and subjective, the former prospective lawyer in me would prefer that there be some black and white as to what is, and is not considered an insult.

"Fuck you Wild Goose. Your face smell just like your fanfic." - Insult

"That fucking Wild Goose... what a writer!!! He fucking rocks" - Not an insult

Like the reply mentioned about your flaming offense that Malaysian like yourself don't consider insult..., well, this is AnimeSuki... not Malyasia. Like the saying goes: "when in Rome... "

I know it's so easy to forget sometime that this forum IS dictatorship. When you are signing up, you are pretty much agreeing to discard all your god-given human rights along with your Malyasian cultural norm to conform to the inhumane practices of AnimeSuki. You've sold your soul, sir, to AnimeSuki and there is no escape. You still deserve some credit for trying to interpret things differently.... :p

Thread closed.

P.S. If you still need to discuss your ban further, feel free to PM the moderator in question and make your case about the cultural nuances. Good luck!

relentlessflame 2013-11-10 12:34

I would like to take a moment to clarify why this thread was closed and why I agree with the closure.

If you have a concern related to a reason for a ban, you should discuss it with the staff. This is because we, as a policy, do not discuss ban details or circumstances in public, since most people do not want their "dirty laundry" aired that way.

But this thread did a few things:
1. Make a reference to a circumstance that other members have no privy to
2. Claim that bans related to said offences were due to "cultural differences"
3. Implied therefore that it "couldn't be helped" because there is some imperceptible cultural difference at play that needed to be clarified.

But is the line of what is considered an insult really so mysterious and cryptic? And is really the case that the behaviour in question would be considered acceptable in a public forum in his country?

We have a good number of Malaysian posters on this board who are quite aware of our "no personal attacks" policy, and abide by it quite regularly. And, in fact, it isn't uncommon for posters from that and every other country to report posts that they find insulting, in agreement with the standard of moderation we practice here. And this notwithstanding, as the OP noted in his comment, he was banned twice for this behaviour, and suffice it to say that the standards for what is considered "crossing the line" in this area were very clearly outlined the first time, and subsequently ignored the second (and very clearly explained again). So I find the assertion that Malaysians have a unique cultural standard in this area questionable, and certainly don't believe that the poster in question shouldn't have or couldn't have known better, certainly by the second time. In light of the in-depth explanations already-provided to the OP, I find the merits of this thread to be dubious at best (if it wasn't sufficiently clear, why not just follow-up directly with the staff as before?). But again, this is why we don't normally discuss ban circumstances in public. Unfortunately, though, because we don't get into the details of the circumstance, this allows people to imply unfair treatment or wrong-doing (in this case due to "cultural differences") while keeping the full evidence out of view.


I think that the actual rule quoted earlier is fairly clear, but to expand on some of the terms within:
  • No ad hominem arguments
  • No "call-outs", regardless of the circumstance
  • No passive-aggressive/backhanded insults (i.e. don't try to be clever and think we won't notice the attitude)
  • No insults by association (making disparaging comments about opponents in the abstract)
  • No discrimination based on race, gender, culture, religious/political affiliation, sexual orientation, favourite genre of anime, choice of waifu/husbando, romantic "ship", or any other "defining" group trait
  • No attacks or implied threats against anyone, whether on the forum or not (this includes attacks against show writers/creators)
  • No posting with the clear/express purpose of aggravating/annoying other forum members with irrelevant or inflammatory posts (i.e. trolling)
  • No meme images/videos, retort images/videos, or obnoxious/irrelevant/off-topic "shortcuts" to expressing your opinion. Use words. (And only post if you have something relevant to say.)
  • No bringing your problems from another site onto this site and continuing the drama here. Check it at the door.
  • No replying to flamebait or any of the above, and so prolonging the tangent and/or making things worse. Please just report it and let the mods deal with it.

That isn't an exhaustive list, but I hope it covers in more details some of the things the staff may consider as related to this rule.

In summary: keep your posts objective, and don't let things get personal. This does not preclude strongly-stated opinions and intense debating, but respect the person on the other end of the discussion. If the other party crosses the line, just report it.


I trust this will provide a more complete explanation that should also provide clarity for people who may be wondering what we would qualify as an insult here. If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact myself or any other member of the staff.


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