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Re: Cancel "culture" is a threat to Debian

Le jeudi 01 avril 2021 à 09:38:58-0400, Roberto C. Sánchez a écrit :
> On Thu, Apr 01, 2021 at 03:15:08PM +0200, Pierre-Elliott Bécue wrote:
> > Le jeudi 01 avril 2021 à 08:40:26-0400, Roberto C. Sánchez a écrit :
> > > On Thu, Apr 01, 2021 at 01:58:49PM +0200, Pierre-Elliott Bécue wrote:
> > > > Le jeudi 01 avril 2021 à 12:11:18+0100, Steve McIntyre a écrit :
> > > > > On Thu, Apr 01, 2021 at 10:40:35AM +0200, Pierre-Elliott Bécue wrote:
> > > > > >Le jeudi 01 avril 2021 à 03:52:23+0300, Sergey B Kirpichev a écrit :
> > > > > >> > Please stop now.
> > > > > >> 
> > > > > >> Or?...
> > > > > >
> > > > > >Actually we could ask you to be banned from Debian lists, but here I
> > > > > >assume it was merely a request.
> > > > > 
> > > > > Nod, that's exactly what it was. Maybe polite requests aren't
> > > > > effective enough for some people.
> > > > 
> > > > Some people tend to only see coercion when one asks them something
> > > > strongly.
> > > > 
> > > > I guess it's because they are keen on having conflicts and fights
> > > > instead of trying to remain on a civilized terrain.
> > > > 
> > > So, then is everybody always wrong?
> > > 
> > > Participants on Debian mailing lists calling for civility have been
> > > accused of sealioning [0] (or similar bad-faith) not that long ago.
> > > 
> > > Either: (a) everybody is expected to remain civil and act accordingly,
> > > or, (b) everybody is allowed to escalate according to their own view of
> > > the situation or their own personal feelings (e.g., frustration,
> > > perceived opression, etc.).
> > > 
> > > The situation where some are allowed or even encouraged to escalate
> > > because they are expressing a "favored" or "right" opinion and others
> > > are specifically targeted and decried for escalating (or even simply
> > > calling for civility) because they are expressing a "disfavored" or
> > > "wrong" opinion is a literal double-standard.  We should be above that.
> > 
> > My point is "when one asks another to stop something", it's not
> > necessarily with a "or I'll slap you", "or I'll have you banned" or
> > whatever you wanna think about. That's all.
> > 
> "Please stop now" is a perfectly reasonable request (especially in this
> case where Sergey persists in being difficult).  "Please stop now, or I
> will have you banned" is a threat, which creates a threatening
> environment for the person, and which, incidentally, goes against the
> code of conduct.

Firstly, the threat of resorting to "legal means" to get something
stopped is not considered as illegal, and I'm not sure it's against the
CoC. The principle is to state that an unacceptable behaviour can lead
to consequences.

But here, no one said "please stop or we call the list police". Steve
asked him to stop, period. And Sergey's reply was "Or?". Let alone the
childish reply, the "Or" implies that he considers that this was a
demand with atrocious consequences to suffer if he did not abide, while
here it was a mere request.

Your statement tends to show likewise. My guess is that you tend to also
look for the bad thing that is neither written or implied.

> Cetainly, we must have a way to address situations like this without
> allowing them to create a toxic environment for everyone else and also
> without creating a threatening environment for the individual creating
> the potential disruption.  In fact, this is the principal purpose of the
> community team, as I understand it.  Not being confident in my own
> ability to properly deal with a situation like "communicate a 'please
> stop this or else' in a non-threatening way", I would involve the
> community team.

Steve being part of that team, I think him asking to "stop" was quite
fine and adapted.

That being said, the way to address the situation is, at a last resort,
asking for a ban from the lists. But it's a last resort, and I'd rather
not consider it as an easy way to get some rest.

> > I don't see how your answer is relevant to that.
> > 
> > Regarding your last paragraph, it seems to me that many things you state
> > here are subjective. When people are freewheeling they get remarks
> > wherever they come from. But indeed, when some people express ideas
> > against Debian's CoC, the reaction is stronger. This is not a double
> > standard. It's just that there is a ruleset we try to work with, and
> > those going against are more prone to get remarks.
> > 
> > What a surprise.
> > 
> The statement "Actually we could ask you to be banned from Debian lists,
> but here I assume it was merely a request." sounds very much
> threatening.  Perhaps only mildly threatening, but still threatening.

Nope, it was a statement. The point is for him to realize that his
childish "or?" is actually stupid because there could indeed be
repercussions, but as I said, it was a mere request.

> The addition of "Nod, that's exactly what it was. Maybe polite requests
> aren't effective enough for some people." escalates the situation.  The
> fact that the statements came from two different individuals against one
> individual makes it seem considerably more threatening than either
> statement taken in isolation.

Someone asked him to stop behaving as he is. His reply is a typical
bully reply. So another one and the former someone explain him it was a
mere request but actually if he wishes to play bully there could be
stronger consequences, and you turn him into a victim.

This is rich.

> I don't know if you or anyone else tried to address Sergey directly
> off-list to let him know how his own statements might be problematic.
> But, the public thread seems to be heading toward an undesirable
> conclusion, rather than trying to change its course in a constructive
> way.

Sergey started his tantrum many days ago. I tried to reply nicely twice
or thrice. At some point I consider it less relevent to be nice when the
sole answer you get is "I don't care".

> In any event, this sort of thing is difficult.  I think you were trying
> to help and maybe did not see your own statement as threatening.  Sergey
> seems determined, though his objective is not clear.  Either way, he is
> clearly very frustrated.

And as I said, I acknowledge what seems like frustration and pain from
him, and I am saddened that we are causing him such feelings.

This is not an excuse to keep coming as he does.

Pierre-Elliott Bécue
GPG: 9AE0 4D98 6400 E3B6 7528  F493 0D44 2664 1949 74E2
It's far easier to fight for one's principles than to live up to them.

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