bynkii (bynkii) wrote,

Tim O'Reilly has lost his mind, and is taking others with him on the trip

Okay, look, Kathy Sierra got attacked, and (for her), it was pretty traumatic. But of course, whenever you have "teh draaaamaaah" and the blogger lynch mob out lookin' for a neck to fit a rope, (oh, and the irony of the blogger lynch mob? When one of the images that disturbed Kathy so much was...her neck in a rope? If it was any richer, it would have frosting), eventually, they're going to need to fulfill the "WE MUST DO SOMETHING" impulse. After all, why have the rope if you aren't going to use it.

So now Tim O'Reilly has the answer: The Blogger Nice People Patrol. Wait, I'm sorry, the "Blogger's Code of Conduct". I have to say that there's a word this brings up. Feces. Specifically, the kind that Madmartigan steps in during the Tir Asleen fight in Willow. It's troll feces, because it's just a bunch of shit designed to start trouble. It's a movement that is specifically designed to create a special group of self-satisfied, smug, condescending dingalings looking down their noses saying, Our sites have the 'civility enforced' badge, yours does not. Obviously, you are a lesser person than we are. Stop, yes it is. There are a limited number of reasons people form groups and movements, and the only impulse this one is satisfying is the need to be better than everyone else.

What's that? Oh yes, I said badges. There are two. One for "civility enforced", one for "anything goes". Yep. That's right. It is as stupid as it sounds. Gee, wonder which one I'd qualify for. Oh right, neither. I dislike badges and other such artificial labeling and groupthink. It's inane, it's stupid, and it's wrong.

First, from a geek POV, this will solve nothing. Not a goddamned thing. The blogs that have managed to pride themselves on civility will stay that way. Not because there's a new sheriff in town, but because they've always been that way, or 'naturally', via the desires of the authors and primary readers/commenters. The ones that are more rough and tumble will stay that way. The ones that are somewhere in between will stay that way. Why? Because Tim O'Reilly ain't changin' shit, nor is the rest of his politeness patrol.

Secondly, and I say this from the heart, Tim, stay outta my fuckin' blog. When even Le Scoble is looking askance at you, that's a sign man. Luckily, unlike Scoble, this paragraph from his post:
I do find disquieting the social pressure to get on board with this program. Tim O’Reilly is a guy who really can affect one’s career online (and off, too). I do have to admit that I feel some pressure just to get on board here and that makes me feel very uneasy.
doesn't apply to me. If someone's going to read or not read my ramblings and babblings because of what Tim Fuckin' O'Reilly thinks of this blog, or because of what anyone but that person themselves thinks of this blog, then my message to that person is, in all sincerity:
Don't read this site. Don't subscribe to this feed. This is not the place for you. If you are uncomfortable making up your own mind, or deciding what to do without another person's input, this is not going to be a terribly friendly place.
While I don't particularly care about how many people read this, I don't want people here who need to be part of a group. I dislike groups with any organization beyond where we're going to get our next beer, even the ones I belong to, which are damned few.

The world has figured out we can't legislate morality. So now we're trying to "legislate" civility. How is this any less stupid? How are a bunch of fucking badges and boilerplate going to create magic happy zones on the Intarweb? They won't. This is like some stupid Dilbertian "Commitment to Quality" movement, only without the free coffee mugs. Hell, you want to see how lame this gets, read the draft of the code. The whole thing is at odds with itself. For example, the preamble:
We celebrate the blogosphere because it embraces frank and open conversation. But frankness does not have to mean lack of civility. We present this Blogger Code of Conduct in hopes that it helps create a culture that encourages both personal expression and constructive conversation.
I think they should be more honest here. They should say "...helps create a culture that those of us who want a more 'civil' internet can handle. We wish to guide personal expression in the direction we have chosen for our "civilweb" and will actively work to discourage those who don't live up to our standards of behavior."

Oh, you think they won't start up a blacklist? They already have a badge and the boilerplate on the draft site. "Anything goes" is going to quickly become the label for the Undesireables. I'd be worried if I gave a tinker's damn, and if I thought that this attempt at behavior control would work. Morons.

But then, this site is pretty much a paean to the destruction of code the first:
1. We take responsibility for our own words and for the comments we allow on our blog.

We are committed to the "Civility Enforced" standard: we will not post unacceptable content, and we'll delete comments that contain it.

We define unacceptable content as anything included or linked to that:
- is being used to abuse, harass, stalk, or threaten others
- is libelous, knowingly false, ad-hominem, or misrepresents another person,
- infringes upon a copyright or trademark
- violates an obligation of confidentiality
- violates the privacy of others

We define and determine what is "unacceptable content" on a case-by-case basis, and our definitions are not limited to this list. If we delete a comment or link, we will say so and explain why. [We reserve the right to change these standards at any time with no notice.]
Isn't that just fucking precious? we will not post unacceptable content Well, I guess this post won't qualify for the Good Person badge. Gee, I'm so sad.

Of course, to belong to this, you have to hire a lawyer. Either that, or Tim has to admit that no, you can't define, as a layman, what is libelous. Secondly, knowingly false? You mean like every work of fiction ever written? Hmm, better revamp that one. Ad-hominem? But what if someone's being an unreasonable panic-driven dingaling. Like Tim is with this line of shite? Don't people have an obligation to say "Tim, you're being a dingaling and managing by panic."

If something infringes upon a trademark or copyright, again, how does a layperson know this? What is this, some kind of new blogging WPA for law school grads? Violates an obligation of confidentiality? What, I have to verify NDAs and shit now too? Gah, it's just stupid verbage, the kind that you get when people decide "We have to do something."

What that really means is "I'm afraid, and need a large group of people thinking just like me so I'm not alone in a big scary world anymore, and we should make sure we're superior to everyone else." Grow a friggin' spine and some fortitude, and do it yourself. What, you couldn't make your web site what you wanted it to be until Sir Tim and his klien table gave you some ethics? Are you that weak? But the best part is the "We reserve the right to change these standards at any time with no notice." line. Holy fuck, they're going to tell you how to behave, then change the rules at will. How fucking precious is that? It's like living with permanent bipolar PMS! WHEEEEEEE!
2. We won't say anything online that we wouldn't say in person.
But I do tell people they're being fucking stupid in person. Really. Not constantly, but yeah, I do. I'm not that different from the slice you see on this site, it's a part of me. It's not all of me, but it's a part of me. I see number two as being a lot of fun for people like me, and ultimately worth about what the other "number two" is worth, only without the fertilizer potential.
3. We connect privately before we respond publicly.

When we encounter conflicts and misrepresentation in the blogosphere, we make every effort to talk privately and directly to the person(s) involved--or find an intermediary who can do so--before we publish any posts or comments about the issue.
So then why the PolitenessMan lynch mob Tim? Why not just do this anyway, the way it's already been working for years? Why do we need to codify everything?

4. When we believe someone is unfairly attacking another, we take action.

When someone who is publishing comments or blog postings that are offensive, we'll tell them so (privately, if possible--see above) and ask them to publicly make amends.If those published comments could be construed as a threat, and the perpetrator doesn't withdraw them and apologize, we will cooperate with law enforcement to protect the target of the threat.
I love how in one paragraph, we go from offensive to threats. But then, I suppose to Tim, there's no difference between a threat on civility and a threat against a person. Hold on boys, put that middle finger away, Sheriff Tim's here. Of course, I love the "...and the perpetrator doesn't withdraw them and apologize, we'll cooperate with law enforcement to protect the target of the threat." Taken with Le Scoble's comment about Tim's level of influence in the "blogosphere", why I think this entire code is a threat to people who disagree with Tim. Do what Tim wants or Tim blacklists you. Oh he doesn't say it, but really, you think Tim's a-gonna deal with people not falling in line and wearing his badge? Right. Secondly, so I write something you find offensive. Don't fucking read it again. Don't tell your friends. Just ignore it. Shit, that's what we tell our kids. Why can't we live by that? See, here's the problem: This is a powerless code. It's not able to enforce shit. It's just going to create another silo on the intarweb and kill off communications with "outsiders". It's just people "doing SOMETHING". Good job Tim. Maybe I need to find a technical publisher who isn't bent on telling me what is good and bad. I'm not so comfortable with giving your company money anymore.
5. We do not allow anonymous comments.

We require commenters to supply a valid email address before they can post, though we allow commenters to identify themselves with an alias, rather than their real name.
Maybe Tim should read some of his own books on how email works these days before he types stupid shit like that. How the fuck are you going to verify an email address, and if you do, so what? How are you going to definitely tie that email address to the person making the comment? You can't, not really. Secondly, Tim? If let you them use an alias instead of their real name? That's an anonymous comment. Jesus, someone stop letting Tim watch the 700 Club, it's killing his mind.
6. We ignore the trolls.

We prefer not to respond to nasty comments about us or our blog, as long as they don't veer into abuse or libel. We believe that feeding the trolls only encourages them--"Never wrestle with a pig. You both get dirty, but the pig likes it." Ignoring public attacks is often the best way to contain them.
But what if the pig is speaking the truth, just not in the genteel way you require? What if the pig is right? Do you ignore truth because it's not all sunshine and lollipops?

Seems like an odd concept for someone in Tim's position.
We also decided we needed an "anything goes" badge for sites that want to warn possible commenters that they are entering a free-for-all zone. The text to accompany that badge might go something like this:

This is an open, uncensored forum. We are not responsible for the comments of any poster, and when discussions get heated, crude language, insults and other "off color" comments may be encountered. Participate in this site at your own risk.
Um...Fuck You. Yes, that's right, Fuck You and your blacklisting bullshit too. Lame blacklisting bullshit. Dude, there's only two reasons to put badges like this on blogs. The first is to identify the blogs you want people to go to, the second is to identify the blogs you want people to avoid so they'll either behave "appropriately" or they'll be ignored and die.

Oh sure, you cloak it in nice language. "Free-for-all zone". Free-for-all zone my ass, Tim, stop being a chicken here, and label it honestly: Undesirable. This site is not playing by the rules of the Blogger Code of Conduct, and as such, is an undesirable site. You should avoid it at all costs, and only visit "approved" sites that are playing by our rules.

Sure, it's a bit harsh, but at least it's up front about things. Unlike Tim's "free-for-all" badge.

This is just panic. Tim and the others got a reminder that the world is not good nor bad, and in the end, doesn't give a fuck about you or your self-esteem, and they're trying to repair their shattered worldview. Unfortunately, they're trying to do it all over everyone who don't allow others to be the source of their self-esteem. Life isn't fair, and no, you aren't unique at all. In fact, on a cosmic scale, we're all pretty insignificant. If you can't accept that truth, then badge away, but don't be surprised when nothing changes.

Shit, who am I kidding, of course they'll be surprised when reality doesn't change to suit their desires. If they weren't, then we wouldn't have this badge bullshit in the first place.

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