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Post by Wazoo Titled "Bad Behavior" in Announcements


priruss
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Note: Being posted in Announcements, there was no way for us "ordinary" users to weigh in on the topic at the place where it actually occurred, so I chose this venue to do so. Indeed, the item was the only pinned item that I saw that did not permit replies of any kind. If that was inappropriate of me, I will happily accept correction and will move or accept the movement of this discussion to wherever it IS appropriate.

Executive Summary: In a nutshell, Wazoo's Announcement was a public spanking of a frustrated user who apparently used the PM functionality provided by Spamcop to contact other multiple users in a perhaps inappropriate attempt to get an answer to his or her question. The aforementioned user apparently had his or her PM privileges suspended for a couple of days as well.

Full disclosure: I am not the publicly spanked user in question, nor do I know him or her from Adam or Eve. I do still have "reporting fuel" on the books and currently intend to acquire more as the need arises.

Repeated readings of Wazoo's announcement left me asking several questions about how this matter was (or wasn't) handled:

- Was an attempt made by Wazoo or anybody else to actually answer the user's question in that or any other venue? If so, a link to that attempt would have been usefully deployed in the Announcement.

- Is there a stated and codified limit on the number of PMs that an individual user may send over (X) amount of time? Again, this is information that would have been useful in the Announcement.

- The spanked user referenced his or her attempts to receive an answer to his or her question being thwarted by "smug" and apparently unhelpful replies by other Spamcop users. Did this actually occur? If so, is such behavior permitted, and were these users disciplined as well?

Remembering back when I was a new user, I can confirm that the way that the FAQs and forum topics are laid out can be utterly baffling and really do constitute a "wall of text" that only the bravest and most determined have a prayer of navigating successfully. This is not as much criticism as it is an acknowledgement that the topic of spam itself is complicated and can be "a maze of twisty little passages, all alike".

Edited by priruss
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The aforementioned user, named and quoted by Wazoo

Huh? I think you're referring to this post in Announcements:

http://forum.spamcop.net/forums/index.php?showtopic=11457

and from what I see there, while the user is quoted he/she isn't named. It's simply a complaint by an admin, nothing more, nothing less. Wazoo hasn't been here in over two years, and there's plenty of other stuff like that littering these forums, so I'm honestly puzzled why you'd bring it up, even just in the Lounge. My advice would be to just make whatever use you want of these forums and not worry about the archival stuff, the FAQs, the Wiki, or anything else, as there's basically one volunteer here keeping the "lights on" and no longer any coordinated effort (that I'm aware of) at cleaning up the old stuff. Most of the time, you can almost literally hear the crickets chirping around here, but I'm glad it still exists.

Peace,

DT

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Note: Being posted in Announcements, there was no way for us "ordinary" users to weigh in on the topic at the place where it actually occurred, so I chose this venue to do so.
...You chose the perfect spot! Replying to the original post would not, in this case, have been appropriate had you been able to do so, IMHO. The SpamCop Lounge is the appropriate forum to discuss opinions of Admin actions.
<snip>

was a public spanking of a frustrated user who apparently used the PM functionality provided by Spamcop to contact other multiple users in a perhaps inappropriate attempt to get an answer to his or her question.

...That's not how I read it (and the fact that you are able to do something is not license to do it in all cases). Item:
<snip>

this user decides to start sending PM traffic to a whole bunch of folks, some of whom haven't been seen in these parts since the dark ages. One specifically states that she does not want any PMs sent in her direction.

That sure sounds like a abuse to me! Item:
<snip>

this user had already sent out seven copies of the same remarks.

That, too.
- Was an attempt made by Wazoo or anybody else to actually answer the user's question in that or any other venue? If so, a link to that attempt would have been usefully deployed in the Announcement.
...That would have turned Wazoo's post into a public, personal attack.
- Is there a stated and codified limit on the number of PMs that an individual user may send over (X) amount of time?
...No but that wasn't Wazoo's point. What he appears to me to have been saying was:
  • Personal messages are not the appropriate venue for what can be pursued as a public discussion. The fact that a participant objects to the wording of the answers doesn't constitute a waiver.
  • If a PM is otherwise appropriate, ignoring a public request from a prospective recipient to not send PMs to her/ him is an abuse of the PM facility.
  • If a PM is otherwise appropriate, sending a redundant PM to a large number of recipients is not.

<snip>

- The spanked user referenced his or her attempts to receive an answer to his or her question being thwarted by "smug" and apparently unhelpful replies by other Spamcop users. Did this actually occur? If so, is such behavior permitted, and were these users disciplined as well?

...We have no way of knowing because there is no hint in Wazoo's post of the original message. And we don't typically sanction "inappropriate" replies, not the least of which reasons is that the definition of "inappropriate" behavior is subjective.

<snip>

the FAQs and forum topics are laid out can be utterly baffling and really do constitute a "wall of text" that only the bravest and most determined have a prayer of navigating successfully. This is not as much criticism as it is an acknowledgement that the topic of spam itself is complicated and can be "a maze of twisty little passages, all alike".

...There are many problems with the FAQ, not the least of which that most of it (URLs beginning with "http://www.spamcop.net/fom-serve/") is beyond the control of the participants of this Forum, another being that it is very difficult to balance the needs of the technically savvy with those of the technically challenged (no criticism intended; not everyone is inclined to be or needs to be technically savvy). If you have any suggestions, please do propose changes and/ or new entries for the FAQ (an often repeated offer that has yet to be taken up by the myriad members who have made observations similar to those you've made, other than some which address the parts of the FAQ beyond our control or general comments and suggestions that don't actually get the work of improving the FAQ done. :) <g>).
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