Banning for meta-discusion [was RE: [uf-discuss] previously
non-referenced in the spec"References"]
Tantek Ç elik
tantek at cs.stanford.edu
Wed Jan 3 17:42:24 PST 2007
On 1/3/07 5:07 PM, "Joe Andrieu" <joe at andrieu.net> wrote:
> Tantek Ç elik wrote:
>> Finally, note that this is yet another meta-discussion email
>> that you have sent, and thus as promised, absent any
>> objections from anyone else on the list (or IRC), you will
>> shortly be banned from the mailing-list for a week.
> For the record, I do object.
Joe, thanks very much for your input. You are the only person (in email or
IRC) who has objected to banning Andy.
However, even as a lone voice (perhaps especially), I respect your
Thus I have moderated him instead of banning him.
Andy Mabbett <andy at pigsonthewing.org.uk> is now moderated (not banned) on
microformats lists. This means that his posts MUST be approved by one of
the list admins before going to the list. If he successfully sends only
topical / positive / improving email to the lists for one week (i.e. no
emails that moderators have to bounce or drop) then moderation may be
> I understand that you are doing what you
> feel is the best interest of microformats. However, the mailing list is
> the only commons that speaks to the entire microformats community.
The mailing list is only one commons that speaks to the entire microformats
community. E.g. anyone can write a blog post on their own blog and tag it
with "microformats". Folks that are steadfastly following microformats are
also checking all blog posts tagged with microformats:
> seems to me that if someone has an issue with governance, the commons is
> the right place to make a case, especially as there is no other vehicle
> for doing so.
The issues are about one individual's disruptive/noisy/distracting behavior
in particular unfortunately, which he is then attempting to defend by hiding
behind governance pedantics.
> Governance so far has been autocratic and sometimes heavy handed. Your
> categorization of these topics as "meta-discussion" only reinforces the
> feeling that microformats is run by a cabal that refuses to address and
> incorporate feedback from its constituents.
Though I think "refuses" is a bit strong - I accept your feedback and will
seek to improve this.
Note that the overall challenge here is one of balance, and priorities.
When only one disruptive individual has problems with governance, rather
than the community as a whole, then it tends to lead one to believe that the
problem may be more with the individual than with the community or the
> We have no formal
> mechanisms for approving or changing microformats, nor do we have any
> formal mechanisms for engaging on governance issues. These are serious
I'm not sure I agree that these are shortcomings. If the alternative is
bureaucracy which slows everything down, and spending time on developing
bureaucracy rather than developing microformats, then I reject this as a
shortcoming. We as a community may be judged for that, but it is my hope
that our positive achievements overall will greatly outweigh nitpicks of
That being said, I still believe it is important to track *any* outstanding
issue - even meta-issues like governance, so that we as community don't
forget them, and have the opportunity/reminder resolve them, even if it
takes a while. I encourage you to add such issues that you see to the
general issues page:
> Again, I encourage you to read the Clay Shirky
It's a good article. I've read it before and at your recommendation just
re-read it. Thanks for the link and reminder.
> Andy, having said that, you do sometimes rub people the wrong way and it
> can make it hard to keep a positive disposition when discussing things
> with you.
There have been numerous private emails sent to the list admins as well
complaining about Andy's behavior. This was not an action taken lightly,
nor without community input.
> I'm also frustrated by the lack of engagement on governance
> issues and the wily-nilly approval/change process, but there's been good
> work done by this community and there's reason to hope that these issues
> will eventually be addressed.
Joe, I very much appreciate your statement of hope, and in return hope that
I and others in the community don't let you down.
>  http://www.shirky.com/writings/group_enemy.html
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