Though directed primarily to the evil administrator, I deemed this issue of sufficient importance to place in Spare Parts as it is a matter which concerns the board and our people as a whole. While The Postmortem section of this lair might've seemed more appropriate, I felt this was a softer element which would be better suited to this section.
I know I have been fairly silent of late, but my burning gaze has remained transfixed on the Postmortem and its greater mission, but recent activity has forced my decaying hand, and though my function often demands that I be more prone to judgement and action than feeble hand wringing, the sensitivity of this issue requires an appeal rather than going in with guns blazing.
Let us begin, then.
I will speak here with a plainness which is necessary to amend the situation and bring to light all the issues while such is still permitted in this place.
It is completely unacceptable that Hendricks266 is able to dictate policy on this board. I will explain why, as there has been a dire error in judgement which we are now slowly beginning to see the consequences of. It will be my pleasure to illustrate, as is my function, what is occurring here and why things need to change immediately.
It was little over a year ago now that you will recall I reacted rather strongly to the 'sudden' promotion of Hendricks to the position of moderator due to his experience and board presence at the time. The reaction of the community ranged from nonchalance to unease, mainly due to the fact that while Hendricks had spent time on IRC, he had not represented himself abundantly on the board. After my reaction, Hendricks assured me that he respected me and it was claimed that Hendricks was here 'to help out' with the sudden influx of "fans" with Jason Hall's mighty appearance. Hendricks is in a different timezone, so this was a wise move.
Now it must be asked; what is Hendricks' moderation function now that it's been well over a year since Jace vanished from Posty? What role does he fill which is not performed by the powers that be now that his function is obsolete and/or complete?
I have stood by Hendricks' decisions in the past for the sake of solidarity even if I did not agree with them at times. I have no feeling of enmity towards him as we've yet to exchange anything on a personal level, but now that he has begun to deem it necessary to alter the EULA, he has gone beyond the pale; he has exceeded his standing and I cannot and will not sit idly by while an interloper sees it fit to shape this board in his image. Being silent during this time goes directly against my duty on this board.
The EULA is Posty's code of laws. It is our constitution, which wasn't crafted to control the userbase, but to honour and protect it. It was the closest translation that could be written to represent Posty's system of (mostly) self-governance. To modify it on a whim is a vile display of gross impertinence.
The Postmortem is not a static board devoted to Blood, but rather a decade of personal experience and interpersonal exchanges and growth in Blood's remaining, breathing community. This virtue is absolutely priceless, and that Hendricks has failed to attempt to grasp this after being here for a year shows that he is either unsuitable or unwilling to fulfill his function as servant, and instead dreams himself emperor. There is and has never strictly been a command structure in place. The 'three D's, as we are called, have acted with regards to giving it structure, internal security and I myself act as guardian and advocate, but we have never arbitrarily signed into law anything which inhibits user expression or activity within reason.
Nate touched on this quite effectively recently. He said that he has always seen us as 'part of the mob' and that policy here in general has always been 'rule of the brah'. This is very astute and correct. We are members and participants of this place first and foremost and its enforcers second, and even then only when it becomes absolutely necessary, with an example being the occasional user 'suicidal lunacy', a peculiar phenomenon here.
Hendricks has approached our userbase time and again with an 'us versus them' mentality. He has fought with Kurt and he has fought recently with Status Cruo. Can you name any user which any of the existing moderation is completely at odds with? I cannot fault Hendricks for his approach as that is indeed how moderation is handled on the vast majority of forums on the Internet, but this is The Postmortem, for Tchernobog's sake, and I can and will fault Hendricks for not attempting to grasp that things are not handled here how they are wherever it is he came from.
We must never, ever, no matter how popular the Postmortem were to become in a perfect world, forget our roots. The Postmortem is a funky, different bunch who praise Blood and defend it relentlessly despite whatever differences we might have, and we, the moderation, are as much a part of that as any member.
I respect that Hendricks might've been needed to help out with moderation in a turbulent time as I have said. I am glad that he has broad experience with Build and has helped the board financially and likely provided advice on certain software issues. I can also somewhat agree that an inexperienced hand can serve to attempt to enforce policy here, but a person who the majority of the userbase isn't even familiar with has no place telling people with up to a decade of participation how they can and cannot behave.
The bottom line for me is this; does Hendricks love Blood, and what is contextually more important -- does he love the Postmortem?
For I am not seeing it, are you?
As for the particular 'issue' which caused this "amendment" to the Postmortem, there is none. While it's possible that the exchange might've exploded into total violence and anarchy sometime during the night which I didn't check the thread, all which I beheld was a disagreement and lengthy debate. Status Cruo is painted as a pariah because of his choice of terminology, but as you can see, Kurt took it in his stride and made a joke out of it as is his way, Krypto laughed at him, Nate went in with sincere intent to try understand what Status Cruo was talking about and Dimebog challenged him on some issues. The later displeasure witnessed is purely because at its life essence, the Posty userbase doesn't enjoy an endless exchange in the bin between two members which run on for pages as history has proven. The userbase uses the board as an escape and place to relax, so this is understandable. At the end of the day all we want is to blow up rats with dynamite.
The motivation for the change is that 'the issue was discussed with BoN', that 'enemies may use it against us' and 'to preserve board image'.
The first is hilarious as it is foolish. That I even have to explain is absurd, but quite simply, BoN is a relentless contrarian who would oppose the inhalation of oxygen if it were tenable. That BoN enjoys Blood and its discussion is not in question, but you'd honestly probably have better results by asking BoneofFear for input on moderation decisions.
The Postmortem has enemies, that is certain, but frankly there is no authority which this useless, heathenous lot can appeal to. They are a pusillanimous mass of ineptitude, decrepitude and mental illness blessed with a talent for delusion and lying, and part of this board's legacy is its survival against such intrusions for many years. It is ridiculous to think that any person would be dissuaded by a single poster using politically incorrect terms in a thread titled the garbage bin in the general section on a site dedicated to Blood, and any person with such sensibilities and a shred of intellectual integrity would observe the Blood section instead, which, as the EULA dictates, is stricter than other board sections. See Section D, clause 7.
The third, while noble in intent, has no grounding in factual reality. There is no enormous mass standing at the floodgates waiting for the Postmortem to create social sensitivity policy before stepping through with open hands and bright smiles. Have we forgotten what this site is about? This is about Blood and its continued legacy! Blood is a disturbingly gory game with no respect for anything - not even itself! Hell, one of the early advertisements for the game shocked mothers in the United States due to being explicit. No, it is sheer foolishness to believe that we have to cater to moms and pops. It is a ridiculous idea which has absolutely no place here. Let's keep things in perspective -- we are an 'underground' video game site and are not running for political office.
There is great risk of a slippery slope here. Sure, we can begin by silencing Status Cruo. That may make Hendricks and BoN more comfortable, but what of the next person to offend Hendricks or some false perception of the board image, and what of the next? In the end users will be so tightly wound up that they won't be able to even argue or discuss anything sensitive at all, and Posty's got a long history of bizarre and sometimes disturbing topics. You are actively curtailing camaraderie and diminishing the board's ethos by instating policies which limit Posty members' communication. It is a violation of the spirit of the EULA section C point 3 and is self-defeating in the context of the Postmortem.
Until some time ago there was another Blood forum, for we were not unique in the strictest sense of the word in that, and things were seemingly good and the users thrived and prospered. Over time, however, decisions from those who set themselves above the community of the board began to isolate and disenfranchise the members. These impulsive measures and decisions placed stringent control on the people in an attempt to create a false sense of civility where one in fact already stood. The moderation was hopelessly out of touch with the needs of the individual as well as the greater community and this showed time and again through policies which eventually asphyxiated the members and which resulted in a destructive cascade which, by then, had already progressed too far.
That board, that Blood forum's name was Transfusion.
If you have not taken the time to read the above and seriously consider what I have written, I must implore that you put down the beast vision and consider with extreme caution the warning I am about to give. I do not give it lightly and though it may leave a feeling akin to consuming a delirium shroom, I am tasked with representing the feelings of the community, and so here I am.
Hendricks' continued participation in the present context; that which should be servant but instead acts as conqueror, will result in the fragmentation and possible destruction of this website's unity and vitality. A decade of work is being knowingly or unknowingly undermined, and a wedge is being driven between the userbase and moderation, and indeed within the moderation itself which did not exist prior. He has instated policy which, should such a trend stand and continue, will corrode the board's sincerity and effectively sterilize it of all its quirks and character, resulting in the termination of all we have strived to achieve.
It would be a gross error in judgement to assume that this is a personal gripe with Hendricks on my part, for I have not spoken with him and am attempting to give the benefit of the doubt and write this off to ignorance rather than malice, but were he to be a common user in the same position and without favour I would not hesitate for an instant to react strongly. However this naturally requires attention and consideration.
The board is already not only being separated from the moderation this way, but this issue of policy alone is already beginning to factionalize the community where before there was only unity. Just as Blood maps benefit from excellent connectivity from one to the next, so the Postmortem is strong because its elements act as a single unit.
Several members have approached me concerning this. I am not here to compromise and have written this to tell you that things cannot proceed as they currently are and that something needs to change at this point.
The present portal leads to certain death. Choose wisely.