[uf-discuss] Unjust banning of Andy Mabbett

Manu Sporny msporny at digitalbazaar.com
Sat Mar 8 21:00:07 PST 2008


I'd like to address each of your statements as they seem to be assuming
things that were not said in the post to the mailing list.

Derrick Lyndon Pallas wrote:
> 1.) Quantity != Quality. (Maybe Web 2.0 decided otherwise, but I'm old
> school.)

The argument that quantity == quality was never made. A set of data
points were given noting Andy at the top of the lists. It would be quite
daft to make an argument stating that quantity == quality.

The point I was making was that one can't look at those numbers and
write off Andy Mabbett's contributions to this community any more than
they can write off Ryan King, Tantek, Scott Reynen, Brian Suda and David
Janes's contributions. They have all had a large impact on this community.

> 2.) No one person is worth more than the cohesiveness of a community in
> the case of community development.

Agreed. Nobody is arguing against that point.

I fail to see how Andy Mabbett has single-handedly caused the
cohesiveness of this community to be greatly diminished. If anything, I
would fault the way these issues have been handled for causing harm to
the cohesiveness of this community.

Namely, lack of administrative transparency and undocumented banning of
this community's members.

Andy's not completely innocent, nor are the admins without fault.

> 3.) Andy != Gandhi. Overthrowing the rule of a foreign power is
> unrelated to anything that happens in the microformats community or as
> part of the process. Furthermore, it is a mistake to conflate pushing
> the limits of the microformats process and its community with pushing
> the limits of the purpose of the community or of civility.

Ha! You are correct. Andy certainly isn't Gandhi. Far from it. Andy is
no saint - he has his flaws, as do we all.

Note that I am going to no trouble to argue against the prior 1-2 month
bans that have been imposed on Andy. Those bans were short enough to not
strike a nerve, even if they were not well documented.

On the other hand, an 18 month ban raises several red flags.

Andy's incivility has been primarily directed at the admins and has been
focused on how they process administrative issues. He asks very
important questions about how this community governs itself. He is often
ignored by the admins, which results in heated arguments further
resulting in a 1-2 month ban.

We would like to believe that we are all equals here, that ideas are
more important than the person behind the idea, and that the rules apply
equally to all of us.

Andy points out every occurrence of when the principles above are
broken, especially when one of the admins are the ones that break the
rules, and has thus gained the ire of the admins and some of the community.

> 4.) In August, Andy will no longer be banned from Wikipedia so at least
> he'll have something to do. Q.v. http://tinyurl.com/25y6y8

It is a shame that you so easily toss aside his many contributions to
this community. I hope you didn't mean to be as snide as the language in
the statement above conveys.

The link to the Wikipedia ban is helpful, though. It is what I would
have expected to see prior to Andy's 18 month ban.

-- manu

Manu Sporny
President/CEO - Digital Bazaar, Inc.
blog: RDFa Basics in 8 minutes (video)

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