Petition to site moderators and owner

During the primary, there were many heated exchanges between the opposing camps. The fervor for one candidate or another was to be expected and if some posters went over the line it could be understood as coming from someone who was a passionate supporter. Since the primaries ended, things have deteriorated.

The moderators have pretty much let people feel free to express themselves and have tolerated some things that would never have been permitted during the primaries. This has been great, in that it encouraged a vigorous debate. They have been quick to respond to certain abuses, however. For instance, a new user was created with a spinoff from another regular user. The new user also copied the established user's sig. S/he went on a spam and tr abuse spree for the better part of one evening. The moderators quickly banned the user, once informed of the abuse.

On a normal site, during normal times, this would be good enough. Unfortunately, few subjects are as divisive as politics and these are far from normal times.

We currently have several trolls freely operating on this site. They constantly trash Democratic candidates and Democratic principles. They mock progressive values and come to the defense of Republicans. This in itself would be enough to get them banned from most sites. However, they take it a step further. They register under numerous usernames, thus creating 'sockpuppets' so they can rate their own comments. These sockpuppets also make it seem as if there are more users that share their views than really exist.

The site is slowly becoming a battleground between trolls and troll spotters. Every diary degenerates into name-calling and finger-pointing. Real, substantive discussions get disrupted by abuse similar to that caused by the one-day troll I mentioned in the second paragraph. Any praise of the Democratic candidate is met with derision and stale arguments by users who echo right-wing talking points. They are supported by users who seem to be coming here straight from PUMA or other anti-Democratic groups. How long can it go on before the site withers away?

I have a suggestion on how to fix the problem, but before I make the suggestion I'd like to explain what I am NOT proposing. I am NOT proposing the site resort to censorship to the point that it becomes nothing more than an Obama cheering club. I am NOT suggesting that dissenting views should be stifled. I am NOT suggesting that there is no room for posts that are critical of Obama or stances he might have taken on an issue. I am NOT suggesting that there is no room for complaints about sexism and the effect it had on the campaign nor am I suggesting that anyone "get over it" or that they should "get in line".

What I am suggesting is that accusations of trolls should be investigated by the moderators and when those accusations are shown to be accurate that the user be banned. I realize the moderators are already doing this to some extent, but I think they should make it clear that they welcome reports of abuse and want users to become more active in helping to moderate the site.

Once a user is banned, they shouldn't be allowed back on the site under another username. This is a common practice that could be easily stopped by implementing IP banning. Almost all blog software has a method for IP banning. Without that in place, a banned user can be back on the site in a matter of minutes. If IP banning is put in place, there has to be an appeal process so users that feel they have been unfairly banned can make their case.

I would also like to suggest limiting usernames to one or two per IP address. This would eliminate the sockpuppet practice.

I realize these suggestions will make more work for the current moderators so I'd like to make one more suggestion. The current moderators could appoint more mods to police abuse. These moderators would have more restrictive permissions than a full moderator and might have to be supervised, but even then they could take a load off the current mods. There are plenty of long-time users on the site who would make good mods. They can be evaluated for fairness by reviewing their ratings and comment history.

These are only suggestion on my part. I am not complaining about the site admins nor am I saying that unless these changes are made I will go somewhere else. As I mentioned above, I don't want to see this site turn into an echo chamber. That's one of the last things I'd want to happen to the site. The reason I post here, instead of on other sites is mainly because there are differing views. Having differing views on a site adds to the flavor of a site just as salt adds to the flavor of a meal. That analogy only goes so far. The trolls on this site are not acting like salt on  a steak. They are more like someone rubbing salt into an open wound. That hurts. And, I'm afraid it will eventually hurt this site.

What do you think?

Edit: One suggestion that came up in the comments seemed like a good idea. It might be nice to have an "ignore this user" setting. That might ease the temperature around here quite a bit. It would, unfortunately, mean that the good comments by an ignored user would also not be seen, thus stifling the discussion somewhat. I had another idea. What if a user's rating were displayed next to their user id in all posts? Sort of the way ebay displays positive feedback. Some forum software has a 'karma' setting that works like the rating system on here. Instead of rating being used to only rate individual comments it could be aggregated and displayed as a user rating.

Tags: divisivness, ratings abuse, site integrity, Spam, trolls, unity (all tags)

Comments

165 Comments

Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

IP ban may not work properly, as some people might be working from behind a proxy (work PC/starbucks etc...), which would mean that everyone behind the proxy will be affected.

by devil 2008-06-28 02:39PM | 0 recs
Petition to site moderators and owner

Please review the diarist TR abuses while you think of having a semblance of fairness...

because people in glass house should not forget they own one while throwing rocks...

by aliveandkickin 2008-06-28 03:21PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Please do review my rating history. You will observe that the only tr's and hr's I give out are for insults to individuals or groups. Some people have a habit of calling everyone who supports Obama, sheep. If you want to see some real ratings abuse and offensive comments check out this exchange - http://www.mydd.com/comments/2008/6/25/1 4179/9016/1#1

Notice the one doing most of the insulting and making scatological remarks was the one handing out the tr's. Notice that I refrained from retaliating.

by MS01 Indie 2008-06-28 03:30PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

dude -- please. Now you are the freaking hall monitor. If you have such a wad in your pants over what I call others, then why not what others do unto us?

Who you bullshitting about you attitude---apart from your brethren about your TR's.  It isn't a sanctimonious act -- it is one side as the KKK are in their mission statement.

by aliveandkickin 2008-06-28 03:38PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Lying about me again, alive? I give out almost no zero ratings. I do give out a few 1's, but not many. It's one thing to call a troll a troll. It's quite another to call them "blind followers", "sheep", "dogs", "my lamb", "obamabots", etc...

From the site guidelines for trusted users. My emphasis.

Zero is for comments that are offensive, script-generated, or otherwise content-free and intended solely to abuse other readers.

by MS01 Indie 2008-06-28 03:46PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

do you really want me to show you the TR's you have given me?

I ask how many TR's have you given amongst your assholes R us club members when they dispense that very same abuse of language to others-- that you pretend to be the new hall monitor for?

You're one sided one tricky pony... I have given many a Mojo's to even guys who have disgreed w/ me on priciple. I have recoomed dairies on people who have wriiten thoughtful dissent to my position. all you have done is wallow in the same _ among your kind.

Have a nice day

by aliveandkickin 2008-06-28 03:51PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

do you really want me to show you the TR's you have given me?
Sure, go for it. Then I'll post those you have given me and we can let people compare them. As is the usual case when you challenge me on something, you will come out the loser.

by MS01 Indie 2008-06-28 03:54PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Nobody cares but you two, or so it seems at least.

by Black Anus 2008-06-28 04:03PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Actually I do.

I'm someone who's been called a troll because  I disagreeded with their position. Or the last time when I listed a statistic. My understanding is that troll are folks whose posts are intended to stir up trouble and nothing more. This is different than being provocotive in order to stimulate discussion. This is sinply being mean. I wasn't trying to be mean at all. I might try snark. Heck I might try humor and look stupid but trying to be mean? NO.

Seems like troll rating should be a two way street. If you TR, you and the person TRed enter the same "virtual space" each speaks their peace and the one who loses gets banned for a prescribed period of time. That would take care of the folks who are TR just cause they don't like what you say. Is this the system you have? Good.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-29 01:29AM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

what  I have given you because you have hit me w/ one sided TR's . If candian gal give it to me...I'll  take it as she is fair on both sides.

You only come after anyone who does not wear the knee pads you do...kid.  

by aliveandkickin 2008-06-28 04:08PM | 0 recs
My dear.

It's best if you do not engage this one.  Have you noticed that in spite of your reasoned arguments and logical points, there has been and never will be a meeting of the minds.  It's a question of goals...yours is to talk some sense into this one but this one's goals are to disrupt every thread into a meaningless back and forth that will eventually indent so far to the right that only one syllable will fit in each line.

You will only end up frustrated.  ;)

by GFORD 2008-06-28 06:03PM | 0 recs
I've given NO Tr's and NO HR's,

at least not in four years on MyDD.  I did, once, that long ago, but that's about it.  I personally don't TR people and posts I don't like on here or on other blogs because I'm afraid I'll start to enjoy it too much.

But there are some real attention-sucks around here that we could do without.  Alive, you're one of them.  I've seen you make good posts before.  I've seen you make troll-ish posts that I actually kind of agreed with.  But you always want attention, you always want to open old wounds, (New ones would be more interesting) and you think you're entitled to do that.

I don't want to tell anybody to go away, but hey, if you can't grow up, well...

by Dumbo 2008-06-28 05:39PM | 0 recs
You have my vote for

most consistently verbose while maintaining the utmost level of negativity for a troll on this site.  But that's just my opinion.

by GFORD 2008-06-28 05:58PM | 0 recs
I've not been around that much

I've not been around that much lately, so I didn't rec your diary because I thought it might be an over-reaction.

Then I went through some diaries and saw the abuse by the people over at Alegre's and NQ. The ratings abuse, the divisive comments over and over.

You're right, they are ruining this site.

But as for your IP ban idea, it won't work. A lot of people have dynamic IP addresses that are assigned by a server. There could be several people in one area that have the same IP address at one time or another during a year.

And the smart trolls can just change their ip address or use a proxy server.

So what is needed is for Jerome, Todd and Jonathon to either start getting serious about moderating this site, try to get some help, and start using an auto-ban system.

Each time someone posts here they leave their IP address. There is a log file that records them on the MYDD server. All the mods need to do is match the sockpuppets with the ip addresses and start banning the screen names.

Fixing this site might take a few weeks or even a month. But if Jerome, Todd and Jonathon do not want this site to become a joke, they need to dedicate themselves to getting rid of the McTrolls and PUMA trouble makers.

Heck, most of the work can be done just by looking at rec's, TRs and upratings.

by DaveDial 2008-06-28 04:42PM | 0 recs
Smart trolls I can live with.

It's the persistent blatant trolls that spoil the fun.

by Dumbo 2008-06-28 05:41PM | 0 recs
Re: I've not been around that much

I wish you were around more. You are making a lot of sense.

by Politicalslave 2008-06-28 10:02PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Also notice that I got tr'd for this comment and who did the tr'ing. As you said, people that live in glass houses shouldn't throw stones.

by MS01 Indie 2008-06-28 04:48PM | 0 recs
How about blocking a user

once they get over 20 hide rates in a day. Or 60. Or fucking something. The same trolls post day after day with no repercussions. Trolls like aliveandkicking and jacobfreeze contribute nothing to this site.  

by turtlescrubber 2008-06-28 02:41PM | 0 recs
Re: How about blocking a user

Aliveandkicking contributes to the site a lot more than most of the people who TR him. If I have a problem with people like jacobfreeze, I have an equally big problem with people who just call anything intended to provoke discussion a troll.

If you talk to someone and they insult you directly, that's a troll, and that's inappropriate. Ditto if they start doing nothing but parroting talking points over and over. But I can't help but think that the people TRing anything in sight only make it worse because they make people angry and bitter.

by vcalzone 2008-06-28 02:48PM | 0 recs
Re: How about blocking a user

Not that I think those commenters who dish out TRs all the time should be banned, I'd just like them to tone it down.

by vcalzone 2008-06-28 02:49PM | 0 recs
Re: How about blocking a user
I prefer to think of it as a cry for help to the admin.
I was hoping that by now they'd notice all the hides and TR's a particular poster gets and do something.
by skohayes 2008-06-28 03:14PM | 0 recs
Re: How about blocking a user

Sure, they'll just pull another Jerome and strip those posters of their ability to rate or rec.

Is this snark?  Serious question.

by Reaper0Bot0 2008-06-28 03:15PM | 0 recs
Re: How about blocking a user

I could see it that way, but at what point do you just decide it isn't worth it? Plenty, PLENTY of people slap down trollish comments/diaries through thoughts and rebuttals. We tried the troll thing and it's being overused to the point of absurdity.

by vcalzone 2008-06-28 03:24PM | 0 recs
Re: How about blocking a user

I've been troll rating him for the simple fact that he's using at least 5 different accounts at once and using those accounts to troll rate others and mojo himself.  Most of his diaries aren't about provoking discussion, but rather provoking divisiveness by bringing up issues and then misrepresenting Obama's stance on those issues.  When he is called out or corrected, he resorts to insults.  I think that's what has fostered this visceral reaction to anything he posts now, because people that have interacted with him realize that he isn't here to foster discussion about progressive ideals, but rather try to use those ideals to submit Obama to an endless list of purity tests that he then uses against him.

Others here have called him a Republican troll, but I think he's just a fringe Hillary supporter who is so pissed at Obama that he's trying to bring everything down with him.

I actually like to see Obama's feet held to the fire, and most of his supporters realize that he is not a perfect candidate.  No candidate is.  My issue is that when someone contributes nothing but an endless litany of anti-Obama rhetoric with absolutely no solutions or giving him the benefit of the doubt... when that same person is willing to jump to McCain's defense and give him the benefit of the doubt in every instance... when that same person has multiple user ids that they use to game the system and sow divisiveness... well, then that person is here for purposes other than making the Democratic party stronger.

by thatpurplestuff 2008-06-28 03:22PM | 0 recs
Re: How about blocking a user

Dont forget to being called sheep and his/her biatch.

Poor innocent soul.

by spacemanspiff 2008-06-28 03:25PM | 0 recs
Re: How about blocking a user

SPACE how diff is that than you constantly making TROLL comments ... and all variations of it and HIJACKING attempt at threads w/ images 1/2 page long?

by aliveandkickin 2008-06-28 03:34PM | 0 recs
Re: How about blocking a user

But if he is blocked, he should be blocked for the insults, not for his opinions. If someone doesn't insult the other users and simply airs their views in a respectful way, that's a positive.

by vcalzone 2008-06-28 03:26PM | 0 recs
Re: How about blocking a user

Absolutely.  If people are submitting their views in good faith and being respectful, even if that involves taking Obama to task, that's wonderful.

by thatpurplestuff 2008-06-28 03:29PM | 0 recs
Re: How about blocking a user

Lemmie give this a shot.

If I responded to your comment above like this:

"Well I hope those repectfull comment got elastic in the waste cause what constitutes a respectful provoke covers alot. There is respectful snark. You know the "get real" variety."

See I can forsee in a particularly heated discussion the definition of snark can and will vary.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-29 01:38AM | 0 recs
Re: How about blocking a user

purple what part on my personality here would give you an inclination that I'm afraid to say what I have to say on my handle?

Don't fall the conspiracy.. You sound like those 911 was an inside job jackasses.

and w/ 300 TR's given to me. wtf do u think--30 damn Mojo's by a guy is going to make a diff ?

300 hundred TR's dumbass and in one day and from 1 guy... I aint looking for a TU status.

I'm not here to make my profile look cute...

by aliveandkickin 2008-06-28 03:44PM | 0 recs
Re: How about blocking a user

Hey alive and kickin.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-29 01:41AM | 0 recs
Re: How about blocking a user

there are people here who use the TR and HR without contributing a single diary sometimes without contributing a single comment. Anyway this diary is a gigantic whine.

by tarheel74 2008-06-28 03:30PM | 0 recs
Re: How about blocking a user

Inoticed the very thing.  Spunkmeyer was trolling diaries and posting 'dont feed the troll' images all over them.

by William Cooper 2008-06-29 03:07AM | 0 recs
Re: How about blocking a user

Here, let me get that for you, sockpup- I mean, William:

Spunkmeyer was trolling diaries and posting 'dont feed the troll' images all over them troll diaries.

There - much better!

Thanks for playing, aliveandk - I mean, William!

by spunkmeyer 2008-06-29 08:36PM | 0 recs
Re: How about blocking a user

"Aliveandkicking contributes to the site a lot more than most of the people who TR him."

http://www.mydd.com/about

* Users who are excessively bashing the Democratic Party, or being Republican trolls, will be banned.

That line on 'about MyDD' pretty much sums up his existence. Obviously excessively bashing and trying to derail the presumptive Democratic nominee would fall into that category.

by USArmyParatrooper 2008-06-28 09:55PM | 0 recs
Re: How about blocking a user

Still, minus insults and derisiveness, pretty toothless. And it's more irritating to me to see a page full of people only calling him a troll and moving on.

by vcalzone 2008-06-28 09:58PM | 0 recs
So its okay for someone to have

seven sockpuppets which they use to game the ratings system and hr other users. All the while using inflammatory and divisive language in the hopes of causing a ruckus and exploiting divisions. I can't get behind that.

by turtlescrubber 2008-06-28 10:02PM | 0 recs
Re: So its okay for someone to have

This isn't the first time I've heard "gaming the system" in association to Rec's and trolls.

You know that idea of making both the rated and the rater responsible for the troll rating seems to be a good idea in this situation. Arbitrate. If the person who TR'd did this in a cavalier manner they could be held responsible.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-30 08:48AM | 0 recs
Re: So its okay for someone to have

I like this idea except for one thing. Manual review of ratings abuse is far too labor intensive to make sense on a blog like this.

by MS01 Indie 2008-06-30 09:24AM | 0 recs
Re: So its okay for someone to have

Spunkmeyer just accused me of being aliveandkicking's alterego.

What recourse do I have. What do I do if he continously TR's me because he has unilaterally decided I'm a troll and decides to TR everything I do because hey he has decided that everything I say comes from a troll and should be banned.

His pattern evaluation is wrong.

So what recourse do I have if he continues?

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-30 11:52PM | 0 recs
Re: How about blocking a user

Toothless or not he's disruptive, and according to the guidelines he behaves in a manner that is worthy of BANNING.

I've also seen PLENTY of pretty outlandish and downright childish posts from him, to say nothing of his TR abuse on others.

The thing is, he IS a troll. A troll can also be substantive and articulate. Although I don't give "aliveandkickin" the highest marks in that category.

by USArmyParatrooper 2008-06-28 10:03PM | 0 recs
Re: How about blocking a user

I dunno how is he any more irritating, that is what you're talking about, than the photos with out comment. I don't mind a few but heck I was beginning to wonder if one commenter was going to ever say anything.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-29 01:44AM | 0 recs
Re: How about blocking a user

You missed the first guideline:

Users who are bashing or attacking any other user on the site, including authors of diaries and frontpage postings, will be banned. Candidates and politicians are fair game

Bashing the presumptive Democratic nominee is permitted. Kinda like the oaths public servants take to the constitution rather than a country or person, loyalty here is to the Democratic party and its ideas, not to particular candidates or politicians.

by souvarine 2008-06-28 10:29PM | 0 recs
This is what aliveandsnickering doesn't have

"loyalty here is to the Democratic party and its ideas"

by turtlescrubber 2008-06-28 10:33PM | 0 recs
Re: This is what aliveandsnickering doesn't have

Hey when I test an idea? I do as taught and make an effort to "play devil's advocate". Plus there may be areas of weakness in a candidate. I've seen folks who have no tolerance for any disagreement. NONE. NOTHING> And they carry it with them to other threads. These candidates are human. No one is going to agree with them 100% and there are going to be hold over hard feelings from the primary.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-29 01:52AM | 0 recs
Re: This is what aliveandsnickering doesn't have

Then would you agree that trolls like aliveandkickin should have no place on this forum, but the lack of tolerance for any criticism shouldn't be accepted either?

It all comes back to frequency, tone and most important purpose.

I do think if someone disagrees with our nominee should be allowed to speak their mind. But if their entire purpose is to be disruptive or to make futile attempts to derail our candidate... THAT is when they should be dealt with.

Especially when they make several sock-puppets to game the system.

by USArmyParatrooper 2008-06-29 12:45PM | 0 recs
Re: This is what aliveandsnickering doesn't have

"Then would you agree that trolls like aliveandkickin should have no place on this forum, but the lack of tolerance for any criticism shouldn't be accepted either? "

Well to tell the truth UAP, if I use your criteria in relation to alive and kicking?

No he doesn't strike me as being a troll. I see him more as a contrarian. Of course different folks have different tolerances to disagreement. They definately have different views on polite discourse. Alive and kicking hasn't harrased me. I can imagine he'll push statements I might make that may seem like blind loyalty. Yes. Like I said that makes him a contrarian not a troll.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-29 01:39PM | 0 recs
Re: This is what aliveandsnickering doesn't have

I'm not a fan of vigilante groups either.

Have seen it on the internet were a group will pick one poster to pound on. Sometimes seems like being outspoken is looked on as crime. It's not. Why it's done seems to be more like a pack of dogs than protectors of civil discourse.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-29 01:44PM | 0 recs
Re: This is what aliveandsnickering doesn't have

That's rather convenient. A persistent troll WILL end up with multiple TRs and HRs and people speaking out against them.

So, when you call multiple (real) people who get fed up with aliveandkickin ruining threads like THIS one (below) to be "vigilantes"...

http://www.mydd.com/story/2008/6/29/1520 18/938

what do you the multiple sock-puppet accounts aliveandkickin has created to game the TR/Mojo system and create the illusions of consensus?

by USArmyParatrooper 2008-06-29 03:08PM | 0 recs
Re: This is what aliveandsnickering doesn't have

"So, when you call multiple (real) people who get fed up with alivenadkickin ruining threads like THIS on (below) to be "vigilantes"

You know UAP I made a general statement on the problem of a vigilante attitude and you took it personal. Which really does go to the heart of this issue.

Now then, about gaming the system:

Well actually, I've heard folks talk about gaming the rec' list creating "... the illusions of consensus"  way before this discussion about aliveandkicking.  Way before. I guess the difference  was it's a group of people who were accused of gaming not a group of 'alteregos'.

I have had experience in being called an alterego on another board. Did you know that? I didn't even know the person who was supposed to my creator. I asked a question that a "regular" didn't like and they started calling me a fiction of another "regular" poster's imagination. On that board, I don't think they even had moderators. It was a rough board to post on. People would gang up on you but you learned pretty quick to stick up for yourself by simply holding to opinion without getting "even" or resorting to "gang warfare". You tried not to let them "get your goat".  I won my arguement by the way. By using reason, determination, and faith in my arguement. Not by gang consensus. MyDD is heaven in comparison to that board.

I know how easy it is for an emotionally upset person to call someone an 'alterego' or for that matter a 'troll'. I learned from past experiences. I do think it's valid to ask to see if ANYONE here is using multiple ID's. I also don't like seeing the TR rating used in a retaliatory way. One recourse would be to make the TRrater just as responsible as the TRrated. That way if it is relaliation? The person doing the TRing would be treated as a troll also. Truth is they would be since a troll's actions are to on purpose constantly cause trouble. Problem is how do you separate the contrarian or devil's advocate who is testing the political beliefs for validity vs the person who is just out to cause trouble.

From what I've read of Aliveandkicking, one the whole,  they seem so far to be contrarian. Very different than trolls.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-30 09:55AM | 0 recs
Re: How about blocking a user

turtle scrubber , is an handle specifically created to HR me. I mean that's all  who he has HR/TR'ed...

LOL/ROLF/ on that line of BS. I have been TR rated by one character who spent hours in my old comments, and TR'ed me 300 times in one day. ALA an alternative ego in this site.

I have called SPUNKMEYER out because he created 2 handles here and he left a signature mark on them to tie it to him. A signature mark that is not common to this site amongst all-- BUT ONLY to him... to simply HR/TR every one of my comments.

I can't say  lOL w/o the same crowd including this diarist TR'ing me .. and you suddenly beg MOMMY ADMIN?

ROFL MOFO's

by aliveandkickin 2008-06-28 03:31PM | 0 recs
WTF ?!?

I have called SPUNKMEYER out because he created 2 handles here and he left a signature mark on them to tie it to him. A signature mark that is not common to this site amongst all-- BUT ONLY to him... to simply HR/TR every one of my comments.

Uh...

WTF ?!?

It's got to be crazy-crowded in that head of yours, buddy.

by spunkmeyer 2008-06-29 08:47PM | 0 recs
Re: WTF ?!?

After checking your history I can only conclude that you are a troll.

by William Cooper 2008-06-29 11:16PM | 0 recs
LOL!

After checking your history I can only conclude that you're aliveandkickin.

Hey buddy!  Up late tonight, huh?

by spunkmeyer 2008-06-29 11:30PM | 0 recs
Re: LOL!

Spunkmeyer. Why should I belive you more than I should believe the poster you're calling an alter ego?

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-30 09:57AM | 0 recs
Re: LOL!

What criteria should I use to distinguish the real poster from the alter ego?

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-30 10:00AM | 0 recs
Re: LOL!

Is the exchange above why you're calling me a troll? Do you call everyone who disagrees with you a troll?

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-30 11:55PM | 0 recs
Re: LOL!

Also is the reason why you've called me aliveandkicking's alter ego. You are wrong/

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-30 11:56PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

There's gotta be a way for the admins to spot users that are logging in under different monikers but using the same IP address.  This seems to be the easiest way of cutting down on this problem of trolls using 7 accounts at once.  The entire purpose of certain antagonists here is to derail real discussion, and it's working.  Like you said, every comments section revolves around the trolls rather than the issues.

by thatpurplestuff 2008-06-28 02:43PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

How do you tell the difference between a troll and a contrarian? No one wants to have to defend their beliefs all the time. You like to think that your beliefs are selfevident and don't need to be defended. A contrarian isn't trying to cause trouble when they say, "Now hang on. What proof do you have to back up your beliefs?"  They aren't by nature just going to accept what you say as gospel. They're the cynics and the sceptics of the world. I wonder how you will distinguish them from "trouble making trolls?

I remember before the invations where the Bush Administration was saying that if you disagreed with the invation of Iraq that you were anti American. Show of hands of how many disagreed with the invasion of Iraq. Did you think being called "antiAmerican" fair because you simply thought that the invasion was wrong and you thought the 1st Amendment guaranteed your right to say this. Seriously?

It's the worry I have when the candidates for this election cycle say don't question me or you will be anti (American/Democrat/Republican/) or (sexist/racist/ageist/gay) or for or against religion.

This is what got us in trouble to begin with when it came to the war in Iraq. When even military folks who said, "Hang on shouldn't those Humvees be armoured?"

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-30 10:27AM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

You explain perfectly in this comment about why people consider aliveandkickin' a troll. He posts antagonistic diaries and comments weak on facts and then turns to personal attacks when he is challenged to back up his claims. He is not a contrarian and he is not playing devil's advocate. He stays focused on one thing and one thing only, bringing down Obama.

by MS01 Indie 2008-06-30 10:35AM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

I'm glad that we agre on the nature of troll. I have to look at alive and kicking from my exchange with him/her. I didn't think that he gave me grief. Maybe my experiences have made me more tolerant to critisism. The board where I cas called an alter ego was rough. Made myDD including aliveandkicking look like a "shiny happy people" in comparison.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-07-01 12:01AM | 0 recs
or there could just be an ignor option maybe?

by sepulvedaj3 2008-06-28 02:48PM | 0 recs
Re: or there could just be an ignor option maybe?

Now THAT would be a great option to implement if it's doable. Lord knows I've wished for it on more than one occasion.

by vcalzone 2008-06-28 02:50PM | 0 recs
Autoban.

MyDD needs to implement the auto-ban.

by Shem 2008-06-28 02:48PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

I think that perma-banning should be used very sparingly and reluctantly if there's any chance the person is an honest poster.

But RedState.com is able, through aggressive moderation, to keep the trolls out.  I don't care for their politics, obviously, but they do run a tight ship.

We don't need to quiet dissent, but we sure as hell need to stop being so open to those who are here to do us harm.

by Reaper0Bot0 2008-06-28 03:00PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

I've found the site admins quite responsive to the occasional outbreaks of HR abuse, such as we appear to be going through now. I'll do my part to report the most egregious abusers, and no doubt they will lose their ratings abilities again and go away. I haven't noticed any more trolls than usual.

As for those who "trash Democratic candidates", that is hardly new on most liberal community blogs, and it is explicitly permitted on this one. When a candidate moves away from the Democratic position on big issues like public financing, warrantless wiretapping or the death penalty they should expect to get some heat. Hillary Clinton is a frequent enough target of attacks for any perceived departure from liberal standards.

by souvarine 2008-06-28 03:08PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

The thing you are missing here is the word before the ones you quoted - "constantly trash..." There are users on here whose only goal appears to be to work to prevent an Obama presidency. This isn't holding the candidate responsible or having disagreements with one or more of his stances. This is constant, non-stop abuse. There is a big difference between the two.

by MS01 Indie 2008-06-28 03:12PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

If the site banned the people who "constantly trash" Hillary Clinton, even now after she is out of contention for the presidency, then we would lose some of our most incisive Obama supporters.

by souvarine 2008-06-28 03:17PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Constantly means CONSTANTLY. There are individuals who never have ANY kind words for Obama. And rather than holding their tongue most of the time, they take every opportunity to tell everyone they can. What do those people accomplish? More damningly, what are they HOPING to accomplish?

by vcalzone 2008-06-28 03:19PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Calzone there are Sen. Clinton supporters who feel the same way.

The ASSumptions of some folks were selfevident no matter who you supported.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-30 10:32AM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

It's not so much what is said as what ISN'T said. When someone has no compliments for Obama that aren't backhanded or trite, they shouldn't be entering the conversation on a Democratic blog. Policy disagreements or no, he's better for those policies than McCain.

I also don't want to hear any more about electability outside the context of "what can Obama do to connect better?" Primary OVER. Nothing to be done. To talk about Obama as if he is unelectable is to simply stir up trouble, because it's a worthless, dead point of discussion.

by vcalzone 2008-06-28 03:17PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

They're still debating the VP candidates.

There's electability issues still here.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-29 01:55AM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

There are also diarist who've thought that Sen. Obama is more centrist than he looks and want to put presure on the Obama Team will remain true to progressive ideals. AND there are those who were ticked about him missing the FISA vote. These critisms should be brought to light and to Team Obama.

So there's going to be critisim designed not ot get McCain elected but designed to keep Team Obama from going centrist on them. To keep him honest and prevent him from going centrist.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-29 02:01AM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Obviously.

by William Cooper 2008-06-29 11:18PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Obviously, aliveandkickin.

Do you ever get tired of talking to yourself?

;D

by spunkmeyer 2008-06-29 11:53PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Would ya be calling me a clone? I'd like to know.

What is your opinion about what I said? Aliveandkicking gave his now how about you? I would be happy to hear your opinion. :D

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-30 10:36AM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

There are users on here whose only goal appears to be to work to prevent an Obama presidency.

Could the 1st moron put his/her hand up and tell us who will vote mcCain over topics of policy dissent?  and the let's ask the 1st moron among us who thinks that such topics of dissent on a policy(s)will  " prevent an Obama presidency" .  

Get real... we are sitting on democratic site.

by aliveandkickin 2008-06-28 04:18PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

You can put your hand down now.

by MS01 Indie 2008-06-28 04:28PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Indie do you think that policy critism will result in folks NOT voting for the Dem candidate?

Interesting.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-30 10:46AM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Calling people "moron" is not helpful. Policy discussion are a necessary part of the political process. If we don't talk about policies we'll never reach a compromise or consensus on what we should do. Calling people "morons", "bots", "sheep", "blind followers" as alive is in the habit of doing does nothing to advance policy debates.

by MS01 Indie 2008-06-30 10:50AM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Sometime I feel like the mods will let anyone say anything they want as long as they preface it with "I promise to vote for Obama, but . . .".

Heck, in another thread there were a few PUMA supporters claiming that they were actively campaigning against Obama.  That said, they've been a lot less disruptive than you, alive.

by Can I Haz Moar Snark 2008-06-28 04:35PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner


Being a Democrat doesn't mean sticking or agreeing to the Obama PC that people like you try to enforce.

I've never seen such Sore Winner behavior or insecurity as your team.  What it tells me is that there is a bad faith element to supporting Obama and awareness that he's not as advertised.

If you think Obama defeat or victory depends on what is said on this minor online forum, that's actually pretty funny.

On the issue at hand...yes, mods should restrict users to one account at any given time.  Just lock accounts that are redundant without warning.    Maybe the rating system should be Inherently Excellent Post (4), I Agree (3), I Disagree (2), Troll/Objectionable Post (1), and Ban This User, Please (0).  People should also be restricted to 2 TRs (i.e. 1's given) a day- at a third, you get a 24 hour suspension.  If you request a ban, your own account and rating privileges should be put at the same risk as the person you're asking to be banned each time.  (The mods pick one of you to Go.)  And at 3 such requests you get an automatic suspension of 72 hours just on principle of being a Thin-Skinned Ban-Happy Busybody.

by killjoy 2008-06-28 04:37PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

I like what you had to say in the last paragraph. I'd mojo this comment for those suggestions, if I didn't think you were so wrong in the first part of your comment.

You miss the whole point of discussion. There's nothing wrong with disagreeing with Obama or calling him out for some issue. There's nothing wrong with complaining that he slighted Hillary or her supporters for some real or imagined slight. No one wants everyone to fall in line or drink the kool-aid.

What I, and others, are calling for is some way to control the people who are only out to create divisiveness. They do nothing but trash Obama and the Democratic party and its ideals. They don't post anything positive about Hillary, they only try to foster anger or resentment. That is a big difference and, apparently, one some people can't see.

by MS01 Indie 2008-06-28 04:44PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Yes I like the idea that the Troll rater should also be held accountable for their actions just like the person troll rated.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-29 02:04AM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Ya know cross over Republicans and Independents who don't like McCain won't be idealist for Democrats. They'll be questioning and looking for safe harbor if they vote Democrat. NO blind obedience with them. I really do believe that is the reason why, even with all the negative response to the war and econonmy, President Bush won the 2004 election. They didn't see a Democrat Administration as a "safe Harbour" for them. Keep posting that there is no place for critism of Sen. Obama? They won't vote for Sen. Obama either. Especially those who are tired of the war in Iraq.

The phrase I heard (I live in a Red State) was,

"Better the devil you know than the one you don't."

Sigh, It's not President Kerry.

And we are still in Iraq.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-30 10:58AM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

You keep pushing the concept that no criticism is tolerated. That is no more true now than it was when you first posted that comment. Have I tried to intimidate you for not agreeing on this issue? You keep saying that criticism shouldn't be equated to being a troll and that complaining about it is somehow stifling debate, yet you ignore the posts that explain exactly why alive is considered to be a troll. You also ignore the points in the diary that explain the difference between trolling and honest debate.

by MS01 Indie 2008-06-30 11:04AM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Sorry not trying to ignore. One of the reasons why it seems as if I'm repeating is that sometimes the threads here at mydd grow very fast. I've found that a statement can get lost. So I might post a response at several places so that it has a chance to be answered.

As fot the contrarian v troll. I've been accused of being a troll and on one site was accused of being an alter ego of another poster. This was because I disagreed with  a regular poster. It came up every time we debated intstead of an answer. Finally they stopped. So when I see someone acused of having or being an alter ego I remember my own experiences. Not fun.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-30 11:08PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

What about those who are obviously here for no good purpose?  Would you coddle those who are here under false pretenses so that they might do us harm?

by Reaper0Bot0 2008-06-28 03:15PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

I suspect you and I have different standards for "no good purpose." There are a number of posters I suspected were merely Republican Hillary haters, but over time I discovered that they were sincere converts to Obama. I don't agree with them on many issues (they still hold Republican positions on some important Democratic issues), and they did hate Hillary Clinton, but they have valuable contributions to make to this community.

by souvarine 2008-06-28 03:24PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

I'm not referring to that.  I'm referring to people who came here with the specific intention of wreaking havoc.  The right wing sites coordinate this stuff from time to time.

by Reaper0Bot0 2008-06-28 07:02PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

How do you know people's intentions? Various groups coordinate their actions on online forums, but it is hard to differentiate between those who's intention is to wreck havoc and those who are expressing real opinions. Some people out themselves, Bob Johnson's expressed purpose in posting here was to torment Clinton supporters who were on strike from Daily Kos. But barring clear cases like that I think the better course is to assume people are being sincere even when you strongly disagree with them.

by souvarine 2008-06-28 09:14PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

There are contrarians. Sceptics and cynics and pragmatics that won't just accept something cause you say so. They want more. They want to know why.

I said this upstream and I'll say it again. We all like to think our beliefs are self evident. We don't like to have to defend every little thing we have to say. Thing is when you run up against a contrarian one shouldn't be suprised if they say, "No hold on just a second. Why should I believe something you say just cause you say so?"

What is your criteria for telling a contrarian or cynic from a troll?

Sorry I'm related to a contrarian. Two of them actually. Both Democrats. They make others (me) explain "why" alot. I've been at "loggerheads" with one of them. I thought I'd never see the end of that conversation. Mercy talking to them. Honestly they want you to defend everything. Says it prepares one for life. That in life just cause the words tumble out of your mouth it doesn't make them gold. I guess it's their experiences. No one gave them anything. Tough people.

Some of ya'll would have thrown them off the board. You did notice that they were Democrats.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-30 11:18AM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

I think we should leave the moderating to the admins, but I absolutely agree that they should be more responsive to these abusers.

by skohayes 2008-06-28 03:18PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

aliveandkickin.

That is the only person I consider a troll on this blog.

by spacemanspiff 2008-06-28 03:19PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

I consider spunkmeyer the biggest troll.  Alive and kicking actually responds to the subject matter.  Spunkmeyer simply posts 'dont feed the troll' pictures.  Never engaging, never answering questions, he is the hallmark troll.

by William Cooper 2008-06-29 11:21PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

I consider spunkmeyer the biggest troll.

That's because you're aliveandkickin.

Hey buddy!  ;D

by spunkmeyer 2008-06-29 11:41PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Spunk how about instead of just saying it, you prove it. Okay. Because I've seen you do some pot stirring too.

So how about it. Prove it or hush.

Sorry but I was accused of being an alter ego on another site and this one. It's easy to do. Kind of like what we call "blowing smoke out your butt"

So again prove it.

Cause Spunk just saying doesn't make it so.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-30 11:22AM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Don't be so touchy, alive.  When you get spotted like this, you should just run off and make another sockpuppet.  I know it sucks for you to have to start the process all over again, but it's got to be better than trying to beat a dead sockpuppet.  

Having said that, you need to learn some better camouflage.  You know: try having your sockpuppets make comments at the same time as you.  Try not uprating each other so exclusively.  Or leaping to each other's rescue so immediately or so often.  Etc.

Oh, and try not protesting so much when you get called out:

I was accused of being an alter ego on another site and this one.

Ding ding ding!  We have a winnah!

by spunkmeyer 2008-06-30 11:49AM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

I could be wrong, but I don't think 12 is one of alive's sockpuppets. He writes better than alive and is much more reasonable. It's also quite easy to bait alive, while 12 stays on message.

by MS01 Indie 2008-06-30 11:54AM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Their rec/rate patterns match pretty closely.  Also, "12"s diaries about fishing match alive's grammatically-challenged rambles pretty perfectly.  

by spunkmeyer 2008-06-30 12:12PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

My rec rate pattern? LOL Who's are you looking at. According to my record I've rated ONE comment. ONE.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-07-01 12:17AM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Thank you Indie. Thank you for the compliment (I think) about my writing.

As for my being a troll, you are correct and Spunkmeyer isn't.

I critisized Spunkmeyer's photos as being annoying. I didn't jump on the "I hate AliveandKicking" train. I'm also a contrarian. Child of contrarians. We don't just take your word for it we try to ask why alot. And yes it is true that I've been accused of being an alter ego and a troll.I am not.

Spunkmeyer, you just accused me of being a figment of AliveandKicking's mind. But I don't even know Aliveandkicking. Very real person here and very independent too.  I'm glad to be contray be cause it keeps me honest. If you had really read my comments you will have seen me apologize if I have offened. You will have seen me very polite to folks who have just given me down the road about sexism. You'll have seen a polite but heated argument about why WE don't use the "N" word.  And if you pixx me off,you will have seen me give advanced warning of this.  You could accuse me of being snarking but not interested in hurting someones feelings. It's no fun to be accused of being a troll or not even real. I have been accused of both Indie. This is exactly why I keep asking about the difference between contrarians and trolls here on myDD. Because I know what it feels like to be falsely accused of this.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-30 11:46PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

12, I rarely agree with your point of view on politics and I think you are wrong about alive, but that doesn't mean I think you are a troll or will tr you for disagreeing with me. I reserve tr's and hr's primarily for abusive namecalling or when someone goes way over the top. The last time I checked, I didn't have a single 1 or 0 in my last 30 rates.

While I am hesitant to get into the alter ego / sockpuppet debate, it does appear as if alive has a habit of creating sockpuppets. What makes it obvious is that they appear out of nowhere and the only thing they do on the site is to support alive with comments and by uprating the ones that get tr'd. They also tr people who go after him about it. You will see some that seem to follow behind him by a consistent amount of time, usually about 1 minute. Long enough to logout and login as a new user. Be that as it may, he's bad enough on his own.

Consider this thread. He came into a positive thread about a talk a Hillary supporter who now supports Obama had with another voter. He posted a completely unrelated question and then dragged out the argument as long as possible. A favorite tactic of trolls. He does this in thread after thread. There are worse examples, however I used this one because it just happened recently.

He has frequently gone very negative against people, including me, and is in the habit of insulting people and calling them names. He is also in the habit of publishing a diary filled with offensive comments and then either editing it or deleting it and putting up a less controversial version of the diary so that it appears people are being unfair to him. This is exactly what he did in his last diary. He posted a version that was filled with insults and namecalling and once he'd received a bunch of comments condemning him for it he took it down and replaced it with a non-controversial version. Of course, members went to that diary and slammed him for it. Now they look like the unreasonable ones because they are complaining about something that is not offensive. It's only one of his tactics. Now tell me again how he is only a contrarian only seeking to play devil's advocate.

I believe actions like his are the root of the problem. Since he appears to be using multiple user accounts to defend himself and to uprate his own comments anyone who comes to his defense ends up being accused of the same thing. This is what happened to you.

This one user is the main problem on this site. He isn't someone who does drive-by-posting. He doesn't come from a wehateobama.com web site. He is here all day, every day doing his utmost to disrupt conversation.

by MS01 Indie 2008-07-01 07:26AM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Hugs and thank you for the explanation.

I will look at the things you've presented.

Thank you for your support by the way. I am very well aware of what it feels like to be hassled all the time. And to be called less than human (alter ego). My first posting experience was like learning to swim by jumping in the deep end of the water.  I was such a newbie. I just thought we would debate. Politely. Nope. Not fun. I am sorry that you've had such a rough time of it. LOL We were trying to debate on evironmental issues, Global Warming, and mercy mydd is soooo polite compared to that board. OHHHH Mother. Everytime I think about it now I laugh but I sure wasn't laughing then.

Note here. I have been vocal about the fact that folks will lurk here and use what they read to form opinions of the candidates. Have mentioned it during the primaries when the Obama/Hillary folks were having a fit at each other. Also mentioned it in relation to Repub. cross overs and Independents. I live in a Red State. They're not just going to say oh we love every thing you say. That doesn't,however, mean they won't vote for you. They will if they feel there is a safe harbor for them. Lot's of disgruntled folks.

The saddest thing of all is that you had to state at the top that you don't agree with my politics. Not because you disagree, I believe reasonable men and women can differ, but because you felt you had to say it. This is about harassing trolls not political debate. Harrassing trolls are everywhere not just on the political blogs. We shouldn't have to declare one to converse on the other. Hugs again. No offense taken. It just made me sad.

Again thank you. I don't like the meanspirited use of trolls or TRratings anymore than you do. Just the effort seems to derail. I hope I'm going to be able to post here without the experience of the other board. I'm easy. And folks have been nice to me here. If I find that I've hurt someones feelings I can back off. But now political debating? Weeeeellllll.

LOL Thanks for the explanation. Sorry for the long winded comment. I guess now I'll be called a concern troll. :D

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-07-01 01:16PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

From what I've seen, the main push-back you've gotten on this site is for trying to explain away (had to search for a non-condemnatory phrase) aliveandkickin's actions. I think you will find that when you stick to the issues, people won't be quite so reflexively antagonistic. Most of the anger I see here that comes from the Obama side is directed at obvious trolls, people who keep arguing the same point over and over without ever acknowledging the other side's points, and people who parrot right-wing talking points or old, already discredited smears.

BTW, I pointed out that I differ from you on the issues as a way of showing that I am not judging you on whether you agree with me on the issues, but rather on what you say.

by MS01 Indie 2008-07-01 01:39PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Thank you for your kind response. Thank you for giving me the benefit of the doubt. Just like the rest of ya'll, I'm very interested in this election. I have questions. I have opinions. I'm learning alot. Learning about the internet world too. In addition my vote, I'm hoping to work this experience into the setting for a series of short stories. I want to be a fiction writer. At the moment I'm working on character development. I know, I know. Spunkmeyer doesn't think much of my writing. LOL. Hey got to start somewhere.

Will be talking to many of you folks who post here. I want you to know that so that you don't think that I am "two faced". A hypocrite. I'll probably be talking to AliveandKicking too. I'm curious to see his/her response to my questions. Same for his/her alter egos. If I have a question that I think that "someone" can answer, I'm going to ask them.

Also. If I think someone is getting pounded and I don't agree? I'll ask like I did here. After my experiences, I've kind of developed a rule and it works. If I think someone is mad at me? I'll go to them and sort it out. If I'm mad at someone else? I go to them and tell them. I don't like to fuss or to draw out a fight. My mom taught me that. Longer it draws out the worse it gets. No good.  

I look forward to talking to you Indie. Thank you for being fair to me. These are the interactions that insulate me from the folks who are "troll like" when they say they back a candidate. The fair interactions of other supporters. I know that for every fussy person there has been a kind one.
And as a new writer? You're just durn interesting to read.

Happy week, 12 dogs

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-07-01 05:20PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Are you familiar with the Gotham Writers' Workshop "Writing Fiction"? I've got a copy around here someplace. It's a pretty guide guide to fiction writing. If you aren't familiar with the GWW, they are a highly acclaimed creative writing school in NY. I've written some poetry, a few short stories, and have at least a half-dozen novels that are still mostly only in my head. I've also got an idea for a couple of non-fiction books. One of these days...

I hadn't thought about writing a short story about the election process. Guess I'm too close to it. Once you mentioned it, some ideas immediately popped into my mind. I think one that deals with community blogs, like this one, might prove to be very interesting. There are so many ways you could go with that. It could be narrowed down to the interaction between two bloggers. It could even be a love story - Love Among the Blogs.

Glad you find my writing interesting. I don't think I've really found my 'voice' yet. I'm actually fairly new to multi-user political blogs. I've gone the forum route, but the forums I posted on weren't about politics and were pretty tame. This is kind of a new experience for me. That's kind of funny, in a way, because I started out 20 years ago participating in online BBS's. My first modem was a 300 baud Tandy modem. We've come a long way in 20 years.

Good luck with the writing.

by MS01 Indie 2008-07-01 06:01PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Boy do I have to talk to you.

You don't know what a happy storm of activity your post has caused here. Would you be interested in working together? Anyone else interested. I have a great idea. I'm pretty sure it will work. There's a book store here whose owners have contacts in the publishing world. If we can get this written we could try to present it for publlication.

Post here. Or on your blog. Or I'll on mine.

Not much time to waste. But the stars are in order. Did you notice that GWW had a screen writer's work shop. Just sayin'.

:D Happy doesn't begin to describe this.

Fuhhy I was so worried to mention writing. Might be the best thing I ever did.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-07-01 07:14PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

I'm open to discussing ideas, but don't get overly excited about my participation. Time is a big factor for me. How much of a contribution I'd be able to make is questionable. Now that the disclaimer is in place, I will be glad to see where you think this might go. I can certainly help with ideas and some proofreading. I'm sure I could also find some time for brainstorming, it that would help. We'll just have to wait and see. I've posted a gmail address in my blog. It's a throw-away address that I'm not to worried about people spamming. Given how heated things can get on here, I think I'll refrain from posting a 'real' email address.

I have seen their screenwriter class listing. They've got quite a few, including one for plays and different genres of fiction. I hear their advanced classes are really good. Those require a nearly finished work. It's more of a fine-tuning process where the whole class critiques each other's work.

You shouldn't have been worried about mentioning writing. There are a great number of would-be writers posting on blogs. That's part of the motivation for a lot of people.

by MS01 Indie 2008-07-01 07:45PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Indie! I am interested. What I'm thinking would need a minimum of 3 writers but I would love to find 9 writers. There would be a common theme. No one writer would have to shoulder the burden and each would be writing on something that they feel passionate about. I was talking to someone this morning about how to package and present it. It would be fun I think. Mods. This isn't another political website. Not even close. It would be a book. I'd love for the admin to be one of the writers if they could. Keep your fingers crossed.

(From your reaction, I'm glad that I told you about wanting to be a writer. I really was worried about folks reaction. Thank you.)

Hope that your 4th of July is a good one. Remember to buckle up! (LOL I sound like my mother. I'm so much older than alot of folks sometimes I feel like my mother LOLLOL)

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-07-03 05:06PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

You live in MS? :D Good to know. I love the coast. The last place I put feet to home was in Mississippi. AND you are from Michigan. Good to know. I talked to a person on mydd who was from AnnArbor. Then heard Prarie Home Companion when it was broadcast from AnnArbor. Quite a place. I hope to visit someday. Again take care.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-07-03 05:15PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

I'll watch for an email from you.

by MS01 Indie 2008-07-03 05:40PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Thanks. Happy 4th and safe weekend. To you. 12 dogs.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-07-03 10:04PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

The ratings/moderation system here is a mess.  it is ridiculously easy to become a "Trusted User" but it really doesn't mean anything. there seem to be no real consequences to posting comments that get troll rated or hidden.

more worrisome, is that there has been absolutely no leadership from the admins about what "trusted users" should do to best deal with this situation. no "hey guys, we see what's going on and we hear you.  the best way to deal is to do x, and refrain from doing y."  nothing. and in the absence of leadership, the trusted users are left in a position where they have to make up their own rules...

i'm not saying we need to "stifle dissent,"  but this site really needs to lay some sort of hammer down about what is/is not acceptable. it is not impossible to provide a place for differing opinions and to run a tight ship at the same time.

i really appreciate the way that NeoGAF is run.  it is primarily a video gaming site, but has a vigorous political discussion in it's off topic threads.  i appreciate that users can be banned either temporarily or permanently.  that way you have a way to deal with obvious trolls and a way to deal with bad behavior from otherwise productive posters.  i think having  a temp ban system would solve the problem of the "legitimate sockpuppets" like deunde and others, making the more nefarious sockpuppets easier to spot.

community moderators with banning power (and leadership about how to use that power) would be a great first step, with admins moderating the mods.

by elie 2008-06-28 03:27PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

There's a legit alter ego.

How about listing what specific criteria would be apropriate.

The emphasis on SPECIFIC what do they actually do?

Since this has been a problem on other boards I'd love to know what works? PS Dictators run pretty tight ships too. What's the difference? How does this sight preserve free speech?

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-30 11:25AM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

I really believe what this site ultimately needs is more and better content. Right now it feels kind of like a wasteland, having emptied out from the Obama/ Clinton wars of the primaries. Most of the really committed Obama supporters are still at DKos, the Hillary dead-enders or holdouts (sorry, I don't know what else to call them) are over at NQ. Leaving MyDD as kind of a wasteland, because the site no longer has a clear niche. Once this site becomes a vibrant community again the Jacob Freeze and AliveAndKickins of the world won't matter, because their posts will just be one or two a day out of dozens.

by animated 2008-06-28 03:37PM | 0 recs
Agreed

So many diaries are about Obama or chasing away the Clinton trolls. Then there's an occasional diary calling the Clinton trolls back "We Need Better Trolls".

by catfish2 2008-06-28 03:39PM | 0 recs
Re: Agreed

I've tried to talks about the enviroment. I've seen folks post about what you call downstream races.

Our state just had a victory. There have been folks who've gotten the ear about our wetlands. And another group who've so far prevented some of the only public beach area from being turned into just another condo/hotel.

I'd love to find the folks who as a group advocate for wetland issues. Drilling off the coast and water pacts are very much an issue in my state.

And the fact that (McCain/Obama/Clinton) all "ditched" the FISA vote means there's plenty to talk about.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-30 11:31AM | 0 recs
Re: Agreed

I think there are folks here with information they could share. I have learned about the primaries. Thing is the post that seem to get the most response are the provocative ones. The ones that get folks back up. That might seem to solidify the base but at what cost?  I'm not keen on cheerleading sound bites. I would like to understand not just parrot.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-30 11:34AM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

This is a very good point. I hadn't really thought of it this way. I do know I'd rather be writing diaries about McCain's stance on the issues and the best way to educate the public about them than writing about trolls.

by MS01 Indie 2008-06-28 03:41PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

There are lots and lots of Clinton supporters over at DKos. The reason even they don't come here is because they are so disgusted by the Hillaryis44/TalkLeft types that post here. It seems that at MyDD you can practically get away with murder if you claim you're just a disgruntled Clinton supporter.

Until Jerome realizes that the PUMAs number in the hundreds (not hte millions) and starts cracking down on their trolling, the 17+ million sane Clinton supporters will have no interest posting at a web site that often reads like it's more dedicated to electing McCain.

by IsaccBurn 2008-06-28 03:56PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

In contrast, at DKos, the idiots who are still bashing Hillary and Bill regularly get tarred and feathered.

by IsaccBurn 2008-06-28 04:00PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Exactly. Again look at the Diaries on now. Almost all are anti Obama. Planet Obama is a pro Obama diary but look at the comments. Then we have the sexist Obama "supporter" confessions.

by Politicalslave 2008-06-29 06:00AM | 0 recs
Great Comment! You know how I know?

Because "Xov Wonk" TR'd it.

BTW, here's an idea that hasn't been discussed. Why not disallow regular members from any sort of negative rating? And while they're at it raise the bar for TU status, and keep a TU database so the administrators can review their work.

by USArmyParatrooper 2008-06-29 12:53PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner
I've been troll rated on posts several days after I've made the posts.  By names I have never seen before. Ever. It's also done by those who go back and downrate all of someone's posts because they don't want them to post diaries or something.  

I would add a fourth rating between o and 1, however. There are often posts that have a bit or two of a valid point, but that drag in some personal or political agenda that has nothing to do with the topic. Maybe a "check you baggage" rating or something. I get that maybe trusted users and those with the ability to rate should have a track record.

I also have to strongly disagree with your statement that since the primaries have ended, the site has deteriorated.

So, what's your take on posts asking for the elimination of the DLC or the elimination of Dixiecrats from the Democratic Party?

by Jeter 2008-06-28 04:06PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

So, what's your take on posts asking for the elimination of the DLC or the elimination of Dixiecrats from the Democratic Party?
Valid subjects for discussion, if they can be backed up by facts or valid points of argument. Not worth discussing if the posts are written in such a way as to stir up resentment.

by MS01 Indie 2008-06-28 04:26PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Your running voters off?

Huh?

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-30 12:01PM | 0 recs
Aliveandkicking's sockpuppets

Xov Wonk     
workitfool    
22TANGOME

Here are three of his/her sockpuppets. Any more to add to the list?

by turtlescrubber 2008-06-28 05:00PM | 0 recs
See my comment below.

More socks.

by sricki 2008-06-28 05:00PM | 0 recs
Autoban.

We have ONE troll here with the following user names:

switching sides
switching sides2
rankles
lemon714
aliveandkickin
workitfool

Those are only the ones we know of. I'm sure that troll has plenty of other handles we haven't discovered yet. Oh, and of course, that's the one who signed up as "srickki" and spammed a thread under that name.

by sricki 2008-06-28 05:00PM | 0 recs
Re: Autoban.

Ha ha. We had the same idea.

Xov Wonk  
22TANGOME

You can add these to the list. Check their recent histories. :)

by turtlescrubber 2008-06-28 05:02PM | 0 recs
I forgot about 22TANGOME.

And I think I saw another new user uprating aliveandkickin earlier today. Forget who it was. I actually think Xov Wonk was formerly "KnowVox", who was a different user.

by sricki 2008-06-28 05:04PM | 0 recs
Re: Autoban.

That last one you mention wasn't very successful. S/he only managed to last a few hours before getting banned. S/he also inflated the comment count on my diary. I should thank them for that. I doubt they'll try that again.

by MS01 Indie 2008-06-28 05:02PM | 0 recs
Who reported him?

I'm shocked they banned him so quickly. I thought he'd just given up because all his comments were immediately HR'd.

by sricki 2008-06-28 05:05PM | 0 recs
hello.

i agree with the sentiment in this diary and took the bold step of actually personally attacking one the other day when they crossed a big line to me.

that being said - i believe this is the THIRD diary on this topic you have written.  what's up with that?

in any case - i think your argument would have a lot more weight with people if it was spread evenly between users that bashed HRC and her surrogates.  i know your diary refers to all trolls, however the problem is that save for a handful of people, most only call out trolls when they are bashing BO (as they should).

by canadian gal 2008-06-28 05:41PM | 0 recs
Re: hello.

Those other diaries weren't primarily about trolls. They were mentioned in the diaries, but the points I was trying to make had more to do with acceptance of diverse views in the party.

Even if they were diaries about trolls, they were written in response the the current trend of discussion among the community on this site. A couple of them were direct responses to diaries that I disagreed with on principle.

One of the problems that I see is that too many people think diaries like this and complaints about trolls are an attempt to assimilate the dissenters. They think those of us who support Obama are the Borg and we are out to get them. That couldn't be further from the truth.

There is a diary that was posted today about Obama's poll numbers as compared to Kerry's at this time in '04. The diarist is a Hillary supporter and expected to get slammed for what he said. Not one person has complained about the tone of the diary. It is an honest look at the current numbers and speculation about what it means for November. Thankfully, he wrote the diary instead of giving in to his feeling of being threatened for anti-Obama posting. That's how bad the climate has gotten around here.

That kind of environment is exactly what the trolls are trying to create. They want us at each others throats. They saw it during the primary and they are hoping they can keep it going.

You would think that the trolling would go both ways if it was being done by McTrolls. However, I don't see nearly as many plainly divisive comments aimed at Hillary supporters as I do at Obama supporters. This makes me wonder if the majority of them aren't really more in tune with the people on no25cents then they are with McCain.

It doesn't matter why they do what they do. As I've said before, they all have the same goal and that is to disrupt our discussions and to turn us against each other. They have succeeded far too frequently. They are succeeding right now as I type this, because I'm focusing on them instead of on the goal line in November.

The unfortunate thing is that until they are brought under control this site will never be able to focus on what really matters. They will continue to post inflammatory diaries and comments. They will disrupt discussions, practice ratings abuse, and generally work to screw things up.

Once they are brought under some control, the site can focus on what is really important. I don't delude myself into thinking they can be banished completely. But, they can be brought under control.

by MS01 Indie 2008-06-28 06:19PM | 0 recs
ah - no.

there are plenty of hillary and her former supporter bashers - but listen when i say this _ VERY FEW PEOPLE CALL THEM OUT.

i just responded to a comment of someone that joining TODAY who got 3 mojos for telling someone to go back to H44 and that they were a deadender.  what would you call a person like that huh?

a member 1 day and making those types of sweeping accusations? suspect.

the point is, i agree with your premise - but in order for this to work ALL trolls need to be called out.  and i dont think that is likely to happen.

by canadian gal 2008-06-28 06:30PM | 0 recs
Re: ah - no.

I have tr'd and hr'd comments by Obama supporters (or supposed supporters) that crossed the line. I think the most recent was when someone said something about the 'Clinton kool-aid'. If I remember correctly you hide-rated that comment also. I think you will see that more and more from Obama supporters, because they've been called out on it by posters like yourself.

There's a very real possibility the new user you mention is a troll trying to cause trouble. Unfortunately, too many Hillary supporters just assume it is a real Obama supporter. That's why Obama supporters need to be more vigilant about trolls who appear to be on their side.

by MS01 Indie 2008-06-28 06:40PM | 0 recs
i agree fully.

by canadian gal 2008-06-28 06:45PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Really, the ones most considered trolls here are pretty tame.  I don't know why I cant see it, but someone like aliveandkickin doesn't seem too bad to me. I welcome some push back with other ideas than the run of the mill robotic points which are supposed to represent all democratic ideas that exist.  Otherwise the site would be so damn boring it could put you to sleep.   In fact he posts some good points that lead to discussion, if the discussion isn't interrupted with people who can do nothing but harrass who they think are trolls.  Really, the contant mocking and following around of supposed "trolls" by people who are obsessed with the idea of not hearing any kind of objection or challenge of the status quo is what I find irritating.  I don't suppose those people could just ignore the diaries or something.  There are some strange folks on the internet.  

Another thing that really bugs me is people listing lists of supposed sockpuppets of others.  Do they have access to their IP addresses or what is the story?  Because all they are doing is making accusations that have no basis in fact and just end up tarring people with lies or at least shit that they make up.

by Scotch 2008-06-28 06:07PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

I think it's tough because at this point, I don't know what I'm more sick of, the diaries about trolls or the trolls themselves, who are pretty obvious after about 2 comments.

by Dog Chains 2008-06-28 06:20PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Scotch, good point.  It has already been noted that the admins aren't IDing folks from the IP's, so these lists of 'sockpuppets' are simply someone's fantasy.

by William Cooper 2008-06-29 11:28PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Well spoken, aliveandkickin!

;D

by spunkmeyer 2008-06-29 11:42PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Prove it Spunkmeyer.

Prove it or I'm going to think you're a bit of  a troll yourself.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-30 12:10PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Snooping proves nothing. IP addresses are the only thing that will prove it.  

by Scotch 2008-06-28 07:19PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Analysis (snooping, as you call it) of posting patterns can help point to sockpuppetry. As someone pointed out above, IP addresses aren't foolproof either. There might be two or more users logging on from the same computer in a home, say a husband and wife. Or, the user may be logging on from behind a proxy at work or through a service like AOL. This creates problems when relying solely on IP address. This is where analysis of posting patterns comes into play.

by MS01 Indie 2008-06-28 07:25PM | 0 recs
As close as you can get

to proof that aliveandkickin is also workitfool, 22TANGOME, and u2livelife:

Look how they mojo and talk to each other.

Here's how they're getting TU status: Uprating each handle with other handles (I downrated for blatant sockpuppetry).

It might have taken me longer to find out about u2livelife, were it not for this. Notice how I criticize u2livelife for ratings abuse, and 22TANGOME comes in and HR's me. How obvious can they be?

by sricki 2008-06-28 07:58PM | 0 recs
Re: As close as you can get

What if it was someone who disagreed with you?

How did you tell the difference?

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-30 12:14PM | 0 recs
Just check the rating patterns. n/t

by sricki 2008-06-30 01:49PM | 0 recs
Re: Just check the rating patterns. n/t

I don't know how to do this/

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-07-01 12:22AM | 0 recs
Re: Just check the rating patterns. n/t

I know how to go where my rating page is but not on anyone elses. I go by my interaction with another poster and what I have directly observed.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-07-01 12:29AM | 0 recs
Does this site even have moderators?

I don't know.

But the site owner has been conspicuously absent for a while and that might have something to do with it.

by DawnG 2008-06-28 07:54PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Well, there is certainly a difference between being called a troll and actually being one.  I've been posting serious diaries and comments here for about a year, but in a recent diary in which I questioned some conventional wisdom among the left (in a serious and thoughtful way) I was called a troll by a few people.  In another diary, I raised a mild criticism of Obama, and was downrated simply for doing so.

By all means, let's crack down on people who are being disruptive, but let's not shut out diverse viewpoints that are consistent with the purpose of this site.

by markjay 2008-06-28 08:12PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

There will be unsubstantiated accusations of trollery in the present climate. That's unfortunate, but not surprising. Just out of curiosity how about posting a link to those comments that were downrated for being mild criticism. I will uprate if they are what you say they are.

by MS01 Indie 2008-06-28 08:17PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

I just went through your last 60 comments and found 4 that had been tr'd or hr'd. I uprated all of them, because I didn't think any of them crossed the line.

The fact that I only found 4 among the last 60 comments was interesting. Take a look at my comment list and see how many tr's I've been give for completely innocuous comments. This is what Obama supporters have been trying to get Hillary supporters to understand. The abuse isn't all one-way. There are just as many egregious examples of ratings abuse towards Obama supporters as there are towards Hillary supporters.

As long as there is abuse from either side there will be retaliation. This is what keeps conflicts going. It's this response that the trolls exploit. There won't be any peace on this site until the trolls are brought under control.

by MS01 Indie 2008-06-28 08:34PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

From the site guidelines:

Don't clutter the diaries with foolish commentary on MyDD itself.

You have not abused the HR too much (one of the quickest ways to get banned), but four out of your seven diaries are about troll-hunting on MyDD. I'd stick to posting diaries about Obama and McCain, that is closer to what this site is about.

by souvarine 2008-06-28 09:51PM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

In defense of this poster, I think that that portion of the guidelines was written under the assumption that there would be some moderation of this site, which there doesn't appear to be any of lately.

You're obviously not Obama's biggest fan, but you're always logical and reasonable in your criticism.  Obama, and the Democratic party in general, benefits from having people like you in the fold that express concerns while still being open to discuss those concerns rationally.

I think the main problem on MyDD right now is that users here are so used to trolls like aliveandkickin, who literally have 7+ usernames and whose only goal is to seed discontent, that they brush aside any criticism as trolling.  Actual concerns about issues are ignored because we've got people expressing faux concern every other diary.

by thatpurplestuff 2008-06-29 12:16AM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

Of the four diaries you mention, only this one is primarily about trolls. The others call on people to tolerate differences of opinion, talk about how much diversity of opinion there is in the party, and generally call for some civility and tolerance. I can understand thinking they are only about trolls if all you read were the first couple of paragraphs in those other diaries.

Even if you think those diaries were only about trolls, you have to admit the subject is one that matters to people on here. All of those diaries made the rec list and generated quite a bit of discussion. I would hope that is what people want from diaries.

by MS01 Indie 2008-06-29 07:05AM | 0 recs
Re: Petition to site moderators and owner

trolls!! they are everywhere I turn!! eesshk.

by alyssa chaos 2008-06-28 11:09PM | 0 recs
Warning: Mom alert

I apologize in advance if this response seems condescending but ... You don't have to rise to the bait.  Feel free to respond to people who have substantive things to say even if made in an inflammatory way.  But if a person is just being a jerk, just ignore them.  If you get TR'd by a jerk, hope that a TU comes along and rescues your comment.

Blogging is a lot like driving.  The best drivers are the ones who are careful and considerate.  When a good driver is cut off by another, he doesn't go charging down the highway trying to retaliate and he doesn't flip the bird.  A good driver just mutters under his breath, "man, what a jerk."

So engage with people you find interesting.  Ignore the people you don't.  If most of the people here follow those simple rules, Mydd will be an oasis.

by dbrown04 2008-06-29 02:42AM | 0 recs
Re: Warning: Mom alert

What you suggest would be great, if all we worried about was the mydd community reading the troll comments and diaries. That's not how it works, though. If we ignore a troll diary that smears Obama then the troll,  his sockpuppets, or others who are against Obama will fill the diary with nothing but supportive comments. Then when someone from outside the mydd community comes from a search engine to read that diary they will only see the negatives about Obama. In that case, they might give that smear more credence, even if it is based on lies and innuendo, because this is ostensibly a Dem site.

by MS01 Indie 2008-06-29 07:11AM | 0 recs
Another lockstep diary

Basically, DKos does a good of job kicking people to the curb went there's dissent...IMO. Why not just hang out there? Problem solved.

The only thing I agree with you on is that Mydd administrators permit free expression for the most part, which is pretty cool...IMO.

by soyousay 2008-06-29 04:56AM | 0 recs
Re: Another lockstep diary

I appreciate this site's allowance of free speech as well.

DKOS is an echo chamber.  Maybe the ones screaming loudest about alive and kicking (sricki, spunkmeyer, USARMY parakiller, etc) should hang out at DKOS>

Problem solved.

by William Cooper 2008-06-29 11:31PM | 0 recs
Re: Another lockstep diary

Maybe the ones screaming loudest about alive and kicking (sricki, spunkmeyer, USARMY parakiller, etc) should hang out at DKOS

You know, aliveandkickin, if you're going to keep using these sockpuppets, you really need to improve your camouflage.  Have a look at "William Cooper"s comment list, and you'll see what I mean.

Also, add to alive's offensive pratfalls the following hideous smear: referring to USArmyParatrooper above as

USARMY parakiller

How patriotic of you.

;D

by spunkmeyer 2008-06-29 11:49PM | 0 recs

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