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      Avenues May/June   05/09/17

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Small Change to the Terms of Service, Effective Immediately

78 posts in this topic

Hello everyone,

 

The admod team has discussed a new disciplinary procedure to deal with specifically transphobic and gender identity related breaches of the Terms of Service. In order to create a space for people to discuss gender in a nurturing and supportive atmosphere, we as a team have decided to add the following clause to the Terms of Service, effective immediately. This is now clause 6e:

 

Quote


Whenever a member receives an Official Warning for transphobic content or for gender identity related offences (such as identity policing with genders), then their warning will come with a temporary suspension of their ability to see or post in the Gender Discussion forum, which will be lifted at the same time as the warn is lifted.
 

 

 

Note that this temporary suspension will work in practice exactly like a temporary suspension from the Tea and Sympathy forum for warnings earned in the Tea and Sympathy forum. If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to PM me or anyone else on the admod team, we are always happy to hear from you. You may also express concerns in the Site Comments subforum. Thank you for your understanding and attention.

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Define Transphobic content

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:D:D:D 

5 minutes ago, King of the Forest said:

Define Transphobic content

trans·pho·bi·a
ˌtranzˈfōbēə/
noun
  1. intense dislike of or prejudice against transsexual or transgender people.
    "more than 120 complaints concerning transphobia in the media were made"
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I understand the posting part, since it will be connected to the person's account, but why the restriction from viewing the thread?  If they really wanted to, they could just create a ghost account to view the topics without commenting.

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Just now, And Peggy said:

:D:D:D 

trans·pho·bi·a
ˌtranzˈfōbēə/
noun
  1. intense dislike of or prejudice against transsexual or transgender people.
    "more than 120 complaints concerning transphobia in the media were made"

lol smart ass :P I mean in terms of how AVEN defines it. If Transphobic content is grounds for a warning there should be a clear definiton of what it is because I consider myself a Trans ally but I have certain opinions that not all Trans people agree with and whats to stop them from reporting my opinion as transphobic simply because they don't agree with it

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3 minutes ago, Flygunn said:

I understand the posting part, since it will be connected to the person's account, but why the restriction from viewing the thread?  If they really wanted to, they could just create a ghost account to view the topics without commenting.

I'm not sure on the technicalities, but I think maybe that the options are limited to restricting members from viewing the forum altogether.

 

Also, creating a ghost account (aka a sock account) is against the ToS, so if someone does this they may only get themselves into more trouble.

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Just now, Snao Çoñé said:
4 minutes ago, Flygunn said:

I understand the posting part, since it will be connected to the person's account, but why the restriction from viewing the thread?  If they really wanted to, they could just create a ghost account to view the topics without commenting.

I'm not sure on the technicalities, but I think maybe that the options are limited to restricting members from viewing the forum altogether.

 

Also, creating a ghost account (aka a sock account) is against the ToS, so if someone does this they may only get themselves into more trouble.

Does that mean that IPs are tracked? How else would a main account be affected by a ghost account?  If IPs are tracked, are they only tracked after a ghost account does not comment since creation for a certain period of time?

 

 

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Posted (edited)

20 minutes ago, King of the Forest said:

lol smart ass :P I mean in terms of how AVEN defines it. If Transphobic content is grounds for a warning there should be a clear definiton of what it is because I consider myself a Trans ally but I have certain opinions that not all Trans people agree with and whats to stop them from reporting my opinion as transphobic simply because they don't agree with it

Frankly, I think the definition Peggy provided is more or less what mods will be looking for. Admods have warned for transphobic content in the past, it usually falls under bigoted content, personal insults, or judgement of others.

 

Some examples might include intentional misgendering, invalidating, or making sweeping statements about people who identify as trans*.

 

As always, one can make statements that trans* folks don't agree with, but as long as it's not bigoted, judgmental, or insulting, a member should be safe posting them.

 

To be clear though, this isn't a change to how we judge posts, given we have warned for transphobic content before, rather a change of policy to keep those who have been warned for such content out of the Gender section.

 

Edit: Out of the Gender section during the time that their warning lasts for, to be clear once more.

 

 

14 minutes ago, Flygunn said:

Does that mean that IPs are tracked? How else would a main account be affected by a ghost account?  If IPs are tracked, are they only tracked after a ghost account does not comment since creation for a certain period of time?

We can check IPs, yes. We have also found socks based on noticing similar behavior. We encourage members to contact admods if they believe they found a sock (ghost) account as it is indeed against ToS.

 

We can also merge sock accounts if, say, someone created a second account because they forgot a password. Then the accounts become one.

Edited by Puck
Clarification
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36 minutes ago, King of the Forest said:

Define Transphobic content

Nothing has changed about what is warn-able content, so if you haven't been warned or talked to about transphobic content, then you likely don't have much to worry about. We carefully review every report, so no one will be warned simply because someone reported them for having a different opinion. Nothing has changed on that front; we won't be giving out any more or less warns than before, they will just come with an added temporary suspension from the Gender Discussion forum.

 

If you'd like some examples (which are not based on real stories, but are rather made up to maintain privacy), then here are some:

  • Spoiler

     

    • Repeatedly referring to a member by he/him/his pronouns despite being told she prefers she/her/hers, because "his birth certificate says he's a man, so I'll just use whatever pronouns I want"
    • Telling someone they are not the gender they say they are (eg you're not really a trans woman because _____")
    • Saying that trans women or men are not real women or men, or are lesser than cis men or woman, in any way
    • etc

     

     

This is of course not an exhaustive list, but I'm just trying to give examples for clarity. I hope it helps. Remember that we often try to talk to members before we need to warn them, to clarify the terms of service before it becomes a huge problem. So if we see someone heading towards breaking a rule, as often as possible we'll try to talk to them first.

 

23 minutes ago, Snao Çoñé said:

I'm not sure on the technicalities, but I think maybe that the options are limited to restricting members from viewing the forum altogether.

 

Also, creating a ghost account (aka a sock account) is against the ToS, so if someone does this they may only get themselves into more trouble.

Technically, we could indeed allow them to see the forum without being able to post it in. If anyone feels that this should be discussed, please do bring it up with an admod or by making a thread in Site Comments. I just went with the "all or nothing" approach when making the options for now.

 

Edit: Oh look, Puck ninja'ed me. They probably explained it better too :P

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2 minutes ago, Heart said:

 so no one will be warned simply because someone reported them for having a different opinion.

  But see, An Administrator said themselves that certain opinions are not allowed on AVEN and I've recieved a warning in the past for simply having a difference in opinion...so...?

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2 minutes ago, King of the Forest said:

  But see, An Administrator said themselves that certain opinions are not allowed on AVEN and I've recieved a warning in the past for simply having a difference in opinion...so...?

It depends on if the opinion is based off a sweeping or bigoted ideology.  Clarification can be provided if you are willing to show the opinion.

 

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Just now, Flygunn said:

It depends on if the opinion is based off a sweeping or bigoted ideology.  Clarification can be provided if you are willing to show the opinion.

 

It was a year ago but I can PM you about it to see what you think.. I mean it wasnt trans related but it was considered bigoted content

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2 minutes ago, King of the Forest said:

It was a year ago but I can PM you about it to see what you think.. I mean it wasnt trans related but it was considered bigoted content

I meant to the admins because they know the rules better than I do, seeing as how they create and enforce them.  Apologies for the confusion.

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Just now, Flygunn said:

I meant to the admins because they know the rules better than I do, seeing as they create and enforce them.  Apologies for the confusion.

Lol well since they are the ones from which the warning came in the first place.. I dunno how much that would help lol

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Just now, King of the Forest said:

Lol well since they are the ones from which the warning came in the first place.. I dunno how much that would help lol

In that situation, I believe they will be of even more help, seeing as how they not only created the rules but also sent the warning.  I doubt they would add a warning without a reason.  If you ask them, I am positive they would be willing to share the reason.  

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Just now, Flygunn said:

In that situation, I believe they will be of even more help, seeing as how they not only created the rules but also sent the warning.  I doubt they would add a warning without a reason.  If you ask them, I am positive they would be willing to share the reason.  

  :D They provided the reason when they sent the warn..and IMO it was BS..but thats just my opinion so dont report me lol. 

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15 minutes ago, Heart said:

Technically, we could indeed allow them to see the forum without being able to post it in. If anyone feels that this should be discussed, please do bring it up with an admod or by making a thread in Site Comments. I just went with the "all or nothing" approach when making the options for now.

For what it's worth, as a member, I'd rather they not be able to see the forum :P It could create run off in other spaces. It also makes sure the Gender forum is a space that is safe for those posting, they needn't worry about prying eyes. Besides, it's just like a chat ban, keeps warned members out of that space for a while so they can calm down and return with a cooler head. 

 

18 minutes ago, Heart said:

Edit: Oh look, Puck ninja'ed me. They probably explained it better too :P

Ha ha ha, naw, you explained it wonderfully and I think having two admods to clarify is great for all!

 

 

15 minutes ago, King of the Forest said:

  But see, An Administrator said themselves that certain opinions are not allowed on AVEN and I've recieved a warning in the past for simply having a difference in opinion...so...?

Sounds like this happened before my time as mod so I likely can't speak at all to the specific case, but I can say that while just having a difference in opinion is allowed, a bigoted opinion would breach ToS.

 

An example of a bigoted opinion is in this spoiler:

 

Spoiler

Someone claiming "all women who have sex outside of marriage are sluts" would be a bigoted opinion.

 

(For what it's worth, that sentence I wrote might also fall under judgement of others and insulting actually, depending on context and all)

 

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Disagreeing isn't transphobic. Insulting can be. Disagreeing with insults, therefore, can be too. Not all insults in a trans* topic will be counted as transphobic.

Reports are looked at as case-by-case incidents. So we look at context (why they said it), content (what they said) and continuity (have they done similar things in the past) - (I just made that up and I'm proud of myself). 

If you are unsure whether a post will be taken as breaking the ToS, then you can always run it by an admod. 

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10/10 change *thumbs up*

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👎 lol 

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Nice change. ^_^

3 hours ago, Peachyy said:

👎 lol 

Care to extrapolate?

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The Tea and sympathy ban only applies to warnings that take place in Tea and sympathy, does this also only apply to people in Gender discussion forum or across the site? For example if something is interpreted as transphobic in  hot box will they be banned from gender discussion?

 

Would using they/them pronouns be considered misgendering someone, because I honestly can't keep track of most people's genders and fall back on They /them to try and avoid offending people by mistake, but this is not PGP of some people?

 

Would accusing someone of  "Mansplaining" be included as it is targeting someone's gender identity ? For example a member post a response saying "You're a asshole, stop mansplaining all the time"

 

It is said that this will be lifted when the warning comes off, and second warnings are three months longer then first warnings, will the temporary ban be longer for someone's second warning?

 

I understand the posting part, since it will be connected to the person's account, but why the restriction from viewing the thread?  If they really wanted to, they could just create a ghost account to view the topics without commenting.

You can get around rule breaking by making another account for most every rule, but doing so is a quick way to getting banned as socking is against the rules.

 

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8 minutes ago, ♣Ryan♣ said:

The Tea and sympathy ban only applies to warnings that take place in Tea and sympathy, does this also only apply to people in Gender discussion forum or across the site? For example if something is interpreted as transphobic in  hot box will they be banned from gender discussion?

Unlike the Tea and Sympathy ban, this would be effective on all warnings gained due to transphobic remarks in any forum on AVEN.

 

9 minutes ago, ♣Ryan♣ said:

Would using they/them pronouns be considered misgendering someone, because I honestly can't keep track of most people's genders and fall back on They /them to try and avoid offending people by mistake, but this is not PGP of some people?

Misgendering is only warned when it is intentional. If one accidentally misgenders but then apologizes and makes clear efforts to correctly gender someone, then I can't imagine that would ever get any action (I'm saying "I can't imagine" because I can't think of a scenario, but I don't want to speak for all admods/situations just incase).

 

They/them is what I use as default and I have yet to see anyone point out a flaw with using those pronouns. But I always try to check someones pronouns when I'm on the forums to see if they have preferred ones and as long as they don't I go with they/them.

 

I think it might be worth saying we aren't trying to witch hunt for little things here, we aren't changing how we have judged reports in the past. If a user who has been around AVEN a while and gets the rules has never gotten a warn for transphobic content, then they will likely be fine moving forward. I really hope you don't feel like admods might punish you for an honest accidental incorrect pronoun ;)

 

16 minutes ago, ♣Ryan♣ said:

Would accusing someone of  "Mansplaining" be included as it is targeting someone's gender identity ? For example a member post a response saying "You're a asshole, stop mansplaining all the time"

To be honest, this one is less clear and I would have to ask my fellow admods to tag in for a discussion.

 

I'll have to answer purely personally and say that in my eyes the answer is no, I wouldn't think that would fall under transphobic so it wouldn't be applicable to this new change. I don't see it as insulting to a gender identity myself, though I see how one could perceive it that way. Of course "you're an asshole" would get a warning and I'm guessing the "mansplaining" part would be thoroughly discussed as well.

 

Just curious, do you think it should? If so, I'd love to hear your reasoning :)

 

20 minutes ago, ♣Ryan♣ said:

It is said that this will be lifted when the warning comes off, and second warnings are three months longer then first warnings, will the temporary ban be longer for someone's second warning?

The ban will be in place for as long as the warning is, so if a banned user is on a second warning, it will indeed last the whole 6 months.

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25 minutes ago, ♣Ryan♣ said:

Would accusing someone of  "Mansplaining" be included as it is targeting someone's gender identity ? For example a member post a response saying "You're a asshole, stop mansplaining all the time"

I would say accusing someone of mansplaining is targeting someone's gender identity because rather than addressing the other person's behaviour, they are strawmanning the other person based on their gender.  Condescendingly overexplaining to another person in regards that they are deemed less competent/knowledgeable is observable in all genders and should not be associated with the gender as a negative stereotype.  It does not invalidate an identity, however it does target an identity in a sexist manner. 

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12 minutes ago, Puck said:

Unlike the Tea and Sympathy ban, this would be effective on all warnings gained due to transphobic remarks in any forum on AVEN.

Makes sense thanks for the clarification. :)

13 minutes ago, Puck said:

Misgendering is only warned when it is intentional. If one accidentally misgenders but then apologizes and makes clear efforts to correctly gender someone, then I can't imagine that would ever get any action (I'm saying "I can't imagine" because I can't think of a scenario, but I don't want to speak for all admods/situations just incase).

 

They/them is what I use as default and I have yet to see anyone point out a flaw with using those pronouns. But I always try to check someones pronouns when I'm on the forums to see if they have preferred ones and as long as they don't I go with they/them.

 

I think it might be worth saying we aren't trying to witch hunt for little things here, we aren't changing how we have judged reports in the past. If a user who has been around AVEN a while and gets the rules has never gotten a warn for transphobic content, then they will likely be fine moving forward. I really hope you don't feel like admods might punish you for an honest accidental incorrect pronoun ;)

 

I'm not worried :P I just like questions.

17 minutes ago, Puck said:

To be honest, this one is less clear and I would have to ask my fellow admods to tag in for a discussion.

 

I'll have to answer purely personally and say that in my eyes the answer is no, I wouldn't think that would fall under transphobic so it wouldn't be applicable to this new change. I don't see it as insulting to a gender identity myself, though I see how one could perceive it that way. Of course "you're an asshole" would get a warning and I'm guessing the "mansplaining" part would be thoroughly discussed as well.

 

Just curious, do you think it should? If so, I'd love to hear your reasoning :)

I could see a very valid argument for it to be considered attacking ones gender. It is specifically targeting the person's gender in their personal insult. It does need some pondering. 

 

41 minutes ago, Puck said:

The ban will be in place for as long as the warning is, so if a banned user is on a second warning, it will indeed last the whole 6 months.

Thanks for the clarification, 

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42 minutes ago, Flygunn said:

I would say accusing someone of mansplaining is targeting someone's gender identity because rather than addressing the other person's behaviour, they are strawmanning the other person based on their gender.  Condescendingly overexplaining to another person in regards that they are deemed less competent/knowledgeable is observable in all genders and should not be associated with the gender as a negative stereotype.  It does not invalidate an identity, however it does target an identity in a sexist manner. 

 

6 minutes ago, ♣Ryan♣ said:

I could see a very valid argument for it to be considered attacking ones gender. It is specifically targeting the person's gender in their personal insult. It does need some pondering. 

Thank you both for taking the time to express these thoughts, I feel like you made great points. I'm going to bring it up with the other admods so that we can do some "pondering" ourselves :)

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7 hours ago, Heart said:

Nothing has changed about what is warn-able content, so if you haven't been warned or talked to about transphobic content, then you likely don't have much to worry about. We carefully review every report, so no one will be warned simply because someone reported them for having a different opinion. Nothing has changed on that front; we won't be giving out any more or less warns than before, they will just come with an added temporary suspension from the Gender Discussion forum.

 

If you'd like some examples (which are not based on real stories, but are rather made up to maintain privacy), then here are some:

  •   Hide contents

     

    • Repeatedly referring to a member by he/him/his pronouns despite being told she prefers she/her/hers, because "his birth certificate says he's a man, so I'll just use whatever pronouns I want"
    • Telling someone they are not the gender they say they are (eg you're not really a trans woman because _____")
    • Saying that trans women or men are not real women or men, or are lesser than cis men or woman, in any way
    • etc

     

This is of course not an exhaustive list, but I'm just trying to give examples for clarity. I hope it helps. Remember that we often try to talk to members before we need to warn them, to clarify the terms of service before it becomes a huge problem. So if we see someone heading towards breaking a rule, as often as possible we'll try to talk to them first.

Specific examples; much appreciated, Heart! :)

 

2 hours ago, ♣Ryan♣ said:

Would accusing someone of  "Mansplaining" be included as it is targeting someone's gender identity ? For example a member post a response saying "You're a asshole, stop mansplaining all the time"

I'd agree that this could be problematic. I'd consider it a gender-based insult since their gender is being used to invalidate their thoughts on a matter. It's essentially saying "You're a man and therefore your opinion is irrelevant on this topic because you are not saying what we are saying." We wouldn't put up with the equivalent said to a woman, something along the lines of, "Honey, these aren't women's matters; you need not concern yourself with them."

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1 hour ago, Cimmerian said:

I'd agree that this could be problematic. I'd consider it a gender-based insult since their gender is being used to invalidate their thoughts on a matter. It's essentially saying "You're a man and therefore your opinion is irrelevant on this topic because you are not saying what we are saying." We wouldn't put up with the equivalent said to a woman, something along the lines of, "Honey, these aren't women's matters; you need not concern yourself with them."

the subject of terms similar to "mansplaining" really show up when someone cannot find a flaw in the other person's argument and need to insult the person.  The individual attempting to insult in order to discredit the other person can then make a generalization/stereotype of a group their target belongs to rather than pointing out a flaw in the person's behaviour.  Not only does it indicate laziness and disregard for logic, but it puts an emphasis that they do not see the other person as a person, but rather a representation of a group they happen to be a part of.  Just as @Cimmerian pointed out, this then turns the argument not into the facts that each side presents, but the associations and biases each side has of the other.

 

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17 hours ago, Heart said:

Nothing has changed about what is warn-able content, so if you haven't been warned or talked to about transphobic content, then you likely don't have much to worry about. We carefully review every report, so no one will be warned simply because someone reported them for having a different opinion. Nothing has changed on that front; we won't be giving out any more or less warns than before, they will just come with an added temporary suspension from the Gender Discussion forum.

 

If you'd like some examples (which are not based on real stories, but are rather made up to maintain privacy), then here are some:

  •   Hide contents

     

    • Repeatedly referring to a member by he/him/his pronouns despite being told she prefers she/her/hers, because "his birth certificate says he's a man, so I'll just use whatever pronouns I want"
    • Telling someone they are not the gender they say they are (eg you're not really a trans woman because _____")
    • Saying that trans women or men are not real women or men, or are lesser than cis men or woman, in any way
    • etc

     

     

This is of course not an exhaustive list, but I'm just trying to give examples for clarity. I hope it helps. Remember that we often try to talk to members before we need to warn them, to clarify the terms of service before it becomes a huge problem. So if we see someone heading towards breaking a rule, as often as possible we'll try to talk to them first.

 

Technically, we could indeed allow them to see the forum without being able to post it in. If anyone feels that this should be discussed, please do bring it up with an admod or by making a thread in Site Comments. I just went with the "all or nothing" approach when making the options for now.

 

Edit: Oh look, Puck ninja'ed me. They probably explained it better too :P

Well it's frustrating when you see people saying "I'm trans because I have a girls body but I don't wear lipstick and don't like pink".. but I'm assuming that explaining that that's a very normal thing and many normal "cis" women are the same, meaning that's not trans, is warnable under that new change? I don't see what's so wrong about helping people understand they're actually totally normal (isn't that better than being confused about something as basic as who can wear lipstick??).. but urgh, AVEN. 

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12 minutes ago, Pan. said:

Well it's frustrating when you see people saying "I'm trans because I have a girls body but I don't wear lipstick and don't like pink".. but I'm assuming that explaining that that's a very normal thing and many normal "cis" women are the same, meaning that's not trans, is warnable under that new change? I don't see what's so wrong about helping people understand they're actually totally normal (isn't that better than being confused about something as basic as who can wear lipstick??).. but urgh, AVEN. 

To be clear, this change is not a change to what gets a warning. There is no shift in how admods judge posts, they will be judged in the exact same way as in the past. The change is simply that if someone gets a warning for transphobic content, they will be banned from the Gender forum for the time of their warning.

 

Typically, this content falls under bigoted, invalidating, or insulting content breaches of ToS.

 

When it comes to commenting on peoples chosen labels, the rule of thumb holds that no one on AVEN can tell someone else what their label is but one can offer thoughts and share experience. In your example, a user with those feelings could say to another users "There are lots of cis women, too, who don't enjoy wearing lipstick nor do they enjoy the color pink." That way, the poster isn't saying that the other users aren't trans*, they are simply pointing out that such opinions don't exempt one from the possibility of being cis.

 

Also, if you can, please be gentle with your use of "normal" here. Those who identify as trans* are normal people, they just have a different experience to go through to find the best way to be themselves than the majority do in most cultures. Just saying cis works fine, people understand what one is saying when they say that :) Saying "that's a normal feeling" is fine, but suggesting that a trans* person doesn't act like a "normal" person can be hurtful.

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