[imc-uk-moderation] [Imc-uk-process] Statement from London on Admins
mike-d at riseup.net
Tue Feb 10 02:43:35 PST 2009
I will update you on what has happened:-
"I personally think that the idea of retrospectivly going through
records to find a reason for this drive-by-deletion is completly
against any form of concensus"
It is well known amongst admins that Ben has not been reporting his
hides for almost two years, and has consistently refused to do so
even when he has been requested to comply with our consensually
agreed rules, so this is not a matter of retrospectively finding
evidence. Chrisc's referral to "finding evidence" was to do with
determining whether or not there was a politically motivated reason
for Ben's hides, as there is evidence that many of them did not
break any editorial guidelines. In the past he has stated that he is
pro war, and the subject of the hidden article which triggered this
controversy was imperialism.
At the London Indymedia meeting it was consensually agreed that Ben
should not have his admin rights reinstated, particularly as he is
still unwilling to comply. On the list it was discussed that his
refusal to report hides has damaged the transparency of Indymedia as
readers and posters have not been able to see the reasons behind the
hides, and this has caused paranoia about censorship. Also, a great
deal of effort has been exerted by other admins attempting to hold
him to account and determine which articles he has hidden which has
wasted much time. Furthermore it has been agreed that there should
be guidelines on why and when someone's admin rights should be
removed, and also that the autoreporting system should be
implemented. You can see this all on the list archive for January:-
Hope this fills you in.
> Dear All,
> Sorry to have missed some of this as it was going on, but i would
> like to
> say that i am dissapointed to see this happen. Ben has helped IMC a
> deal and has spent an innordinate amount of working with UK
> activists and
> ensuring that indymedia remains relevant and accessable to groups.
> I personally think that the idea of retrospectivly going through
> records to
> find a reason for this drive-by-deletion is completly against any
> form of
> concensus, and seems personally vindictive. Are we behaving like
> cops who
> will arrest you first and look for reasons later?
> I propose that Ben have his account reinstated, and that we look at
> ways of
> resolving having to double post changes/hiddens.
> 2009/2/8 ben gringo <gringoben at gmail.com>
>> anargeek chris at anargeek.net wrote (Wed Feb 4):
>> > If needs be someone could spend a day or so going though
>> > the Features and Moderation list archives to find all the
>> > times that unreported hiddens by Ben have had to be undone
>> > or reported by someone else, to illustrate that this has
>> > been a chronic problem for several years, however I think
>> > we all have better things to do.
>> I'm sure we do all have better things to do and I'm sure you
>> would be able to come up with a hand full of examples to
>> illustrate your point. However such poorly conceived exercise
>> would fail to consider how much time other people have been
>> saved by my efforts to keep the wire clean, create filters against
>> disruptive users and spambots, remove abusive comments etc.
>> Chris wrote:
>> > Sorry to have acted single handedly ....
>> > I agree that it wasn't ideal that things were brought to a
>> > head by the secret hiding of the article by Nafeez Ahmed
>> > but, at the time, it did represent the last straw for me....
>> > In my defence, in the discussion on the Moderation List
>> > nobody has cited one Editorial Guideline that the
>> > article that was secretly hidden broke and the article is
>> > also now highlighted by UK and Global feature articles.
>> I now understand why you acted as you did. Had I realised that you
>> had a personal interest in that specific post I'd not have touched
>> but I was unaware at the time that you had previously posted other
>> related articles. I'm sorry for stepping on your toes.
>> I still think it a borderline article in terms of being on the
>> newswire however, as far as I can tell, only one person spoke up
>> with a
>> similar opinion so it's obvious that the majority view is that it
>> have been hidden (either that or those who agree are keeping
>> On Thu 29-Jan-2009 at 04:22:53PM +0000, mish wrote:
>> > it is a repost widely available on the internet...
>> > it is not unreasonable to hide it....
>> > a borderline article
>> Chris replied (Thu Jan 29 12:03:53 PST 2009):
>> > I'm quite shocked by this, what makes you think this is a
>> >"a borderline article" which it is "not unreasonable" to hide?
>> > Which guidelines does it break or which guidelines is it
>> > borderline on?
>> There is no specific guidelines broken by the article, that's why
>> I never said there was. I said it wasn't 'in the spirit' of the
>> as it was not 'grassroots' in the sense of people or groups
>> in social struggles etc since the author is a widely published
>> We've hidden academic papers before for those reasons although
>> they don't breach any specific guidelines. There are plenty of
>> which get hidden without breaking any specific guidelines. After
>> guidelines are just guidelines not rules. We leave published
>> which appear to breach guidelines and likewise we often hide
>> which don't - such as stuff hidden for being 'a incoherent rant'.
>> The guidelines for promotion perhaps give a good clue to what IS
>> the spirit of indymedia - the stuff we actually want to see -
>> "original, first hand reports on actions and other events. good,
>> original analysis" and the stuff we don't "re-posts from other
>> (blogs etc),
>> announcements of events (unless with significant background/news
>> When people use the 'catch all' justification of 'non news', they
>> are often
>> a subjective judgement call on what the 'right' type of news might
>> be for
>> It's a particular poorly worded guideline - "posts which are
>> clearly purely
>> opinion or rants unrelated to a recent event or action etc." can
>> be used
>> as a reason to hide many articles consisting of analysis rather
>> than news
>> while not actually covering opinionated rants which ARE about a
>> event or action.
>> Indymedia moderation is all about attempting to interpret and
>> the spirit of the indymedia we want to see - using guidelines
>> which may not
>> always adequately express it. Our mission statement is as much
>> part of
>> the guidelines as the guidelines themselves, it reflects more
>> about the
>> of indymedia - perhaps we should look at incorporating them more
>> the editorial guidelines. As it stands, we're not always going to
>> the same way which perhaps is a good argument for making our
>> much more specific and clear about what should and should not be
>> Chris wrote:
>> > I did some searching for phrases in this article and it
>> > really *isn't* "a repost widely available on the internet"
>> > at least I couldn't find it on any other
>> > type sites apart from ICH (
>> > We don't have a rule that things should be hidden because
>> > they are "widely available on the internet" so why is this
>> > being coited as a "not unreasonable" resason to hide it?
>> Below about 20 other sites which have published the full article.
>> There is indeed no 'rule' to say that people shouldn't repost
>> stuff that is available elsewhere, widely or otherwise
>> but personally I don't think the role of indymedia is to duplicate
>> content from elsewhere even if we think it's a good read.
>> Chris asked:
>> > Since when are articles opposing Imperialism and arguing
>> > for a progressive alternative not suitable for Indymedia?
>> I'm sure we could find hundreds if not thousands of articles
>> imperialism and arguing for progressive alternatives which people
>> thought should not be on indymedia for various reasons. For
>> if such an article appears in corporate publications (it does
>> happen), or
>> when it's suggesting hierarchical solutions or using
>> or abusive language etc. we might think it unsuitable for
>> I think such an article is suitable for indymedia when it is
>> coming from
>> grassroots struggle and using indymedia because indymedia is the
>> for such movements to express themselves and see their voices
>> similar struggles.
>> Obviously we don't always agree with each
>> other and that why it's important that we a forum to discuss
>> and the a way of reporting our actions. I agree with that and
>> understand I
>> cause problems by not completing the second stage of reporting,
>> to this list.
>> I have a number of reasons I don't want to report on the list and
>> expressed my intend
>> a long time ago at a national gathering. I am unhappy that
>> indymedia admins
>> don't enjoy the protection of public anonymity enjoyed by the
>> other users
>> the site. It is not unusual for admins to be singled out by scum
>> and trolls
>> things they have said or done on the list and while it makes sense
>> about why things have been hidden to be available to public
>> scrutiny, the
>> people the admins need to be directly accountable to are other
>> If I knew how and had the access then I'd write the code to
>> implement the
>> re auto reporting. But I don't so I can't and there are so many
>> things that
>> sorting out that I can see it's not a priority for anyone else.
>> Anyway, I still think having my admin account deleted unilaterally
>> but it's probably a good thing as doing moderation was taking up
>> way to
>> much time.
>> imc-uk-moderation mailing list
>> imc-uk-moderation at lists.indymedia.org
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