The Demotion of Strilo

Discussion in 'Communications' started by ObiWan506, Nov 9, 2010.

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  1. Im_just_guessing Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 23, 2002
    star 7
    http://www.explosm.net/comics/1310/
  2. KnightWriter Administrator Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 6, 2001
    star 8
    It's like some others have said, if his behaviour has been going on for 6 plus years, and three previous adminitrations, why is this happening now?

    Because no one ever stepped up and said, "that's enough," and Tim never chose to make it a moot point by stepping down of his own accord.

    Why is it so difficult to comprehend that Tim may have been both a good moderator and difficult to deal with on many occasions over the years? It seems that it must be either one or the other, and hardly anyone seems to be acknowledging a basic reality, which is that during Tim's seven year tenure, with nearly complete turnover of the Mod Squad from 2003 to today, the same problems existed throughout those years. Remember, in late 2005, when things were on the brink of where they are now, it was an almost entirely different Mod Squad. When the song remains the same for so long, it's time to start looking at who's doing the singing.

    I simply cannot abide the martyrization some are attempting to create here. Folks, you reap what you sow. I certainly do and have, and that's why my relationship with a number of people here either isn't what it once was or has always been fraught with problems. I accept my responsibility as part of that, and no one ever forced me to make a post or private message. When I e-brawled with KK in December of 2005 (which helped precipitate the noted blowup between Tim and KK), it was very negative, and it's not something I'm proud of. It was one of the things that led me to hit the road, along with my health.

    No one is forcing Tim to leave. If he wants to, that's his right and no one will begrudge him doing so (even as we may find it unfortunate). But, there seem to be an awful lot of fingers pointing away from Tim and not too many going the other way, despite knowing from personal experience that reflection in this particular mirror ought to have a few things on it that should give pause before launching into some kind of victimization tour. Mine certainly does, and I mentioned one of the things in it above. It's interesting that Tim's long service and the ever-changing makeup of both the Mod Squad and the JC in general limits the number of people who can speak from long-term experience on a number of issues that crop up. Well, this is one thing I have experience with, and I know I'm not alone in it.

    You can be both a nice guy and a jerk. I would know, because I've been both on a great many occasions (not at the same time, I hope). You can be both an effective moderator and unfit over the long haul because you can't temper your temperament. Please stop creating false dichotomies and binary choices when reality is much more nuanced.
  3. DarthTunick Arena Streak for Colors Commissioner

    Game Host
    Member Since:
    Nov 26, 2000
    star 10
    Personally, KW, I don't see it as a victimization/martyrdom situation...............just disappointment with how all of this has played out. As I mentioned earlier, nobody is perfect, and there is nobody involved with this situation that 100% correct in their view point. And thanks, Breezy. :p

    They beat Boston!: 2009-2010 L.A. Lakers: Back-to-Back World Champions :cool:
  4. JoinTheSchwarz Comms Admin & Community Manager

    Administrator
    Member Since:
    Nov 21, 2002
    star 8
    Tim, you better return to posting. If you don't, I'm taking a plane to wherever you are and dragging your hard-headed self back here.

    But also...

    Okay.

    Even though I've been one of the mods that wanted to have Tim back, I feel slighted by this kind of blind accusation. I know Communications drama for the hell of it is incredibly fun. How couldn't it be? It's the best kind of trolling (trawling), as we can't ignore your posts and we're forced to reply to them by our position as members of the moderating team. A Paradise!

    But this time you're calling everyone in the moderating team a liar, and you better bring some kind of proof with you (and I know you don't). The discussion of this situation has been made in Mod Squad in the open, for the sake of transparency. Every moderator and manager has had the opportunity to say what they thought and what the course of action taken should be. There's a thread in Mod Squad that, at the time of writing this, is 246 posts long --longer than most current Communications threads. Even the statement you see up there has been written publically and edited by everyone in MS who's wanted to have a say.

    Did the admins botch this by demoting Tim without talking to the moderating team first, or even readying some kind of statement to the userbase, and unnecessarily hurting Tim -who, for all of his many flaws, is a human like everyone else and loves this place is a way that tends to surprise me? No doubt about it, and they're going to be hearing about this for a long, long time.

    But now you want to lead a witch hunt? Look elsewhere.
  5. Havac Some Guy Who Moderates Lit

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2005
    star 7
    Warning: This is long. Blame the people who kept posting while I was working on it.

    TL;DR: The admins, just maybe, might not be horrible people, and however they bungled the announcement, and whatever specific information might not be available to the public, this just might have been the correct call to make. Also, I try to explain things as clearly as I can. Plus, this thread's billionth analogy.

    I've said this in MS, and I'll say it here now: I totally agree with this. A situation like that would not be at all appropriate. But that's not the situation in MS. The thing is that the division of "opinionated, passionate people like Strilo who occasionally let themselves get carried away" and "apathetic yes-men that are afraid to express their opinions for fear of stepping on someone's toes" is a false dichotomy.

    Sometimes, yes-men are jerks. Sometimes, people who disagree with everything you say are the nicest, most polite people in the world. There's a difference between the substance of what you say and the style of how you say it. A person's manner in communicating with others can be a problem entirely separate from what they're actually communicating. The guy on a deck shouting, "Hey, *****es, looking good!" at a group of girls walking past has a problem with communication; it doesn't matter that he's trying to pay them a compliment. Someone whose approach to agreeing with the administration is, "Hey, you people who're disagreeing with the Head Admin, you're complete morons and let me tell you why," is no more acceptable or tolerable than someone whose approach to disagreeing with the administration is, "Hey, Head Admin, you're a complete moron and let me tell you why." And meek, submissive dissenters who say, "Well, I disagree, but it's no big deal and I don't want to ruffle any feathers," are no more valuable to discussion than suck-up yes-men who say, "Yeah, that sounds awesome, boss!" What's valuable and appropriate is someone who, agree or disagree, can honestly deliver opinions while remaining civil, professional, and calm. And that is what we should strive for in MS, and I think there are enough people out there that we should not have to compromise to get only half of that equation.

    It's a false dichotomy to present the situation as if your only choice is to have people who behave inappropriately but at least they're willing to disagree, or to have people who are civil but are all just spineless. Not only is it false, but it legitimizes bad behavior; it gives people a license to be jerks, because hey, they're just passionate and intense people who are willing to disagree, and you gotta accept some dissent. The truth is, you can have one without the other, and disagreeing with someone is not an excuse for being a jerk about it. There's no reason to put up with bad behavior just because it comes packaged around a disagreement on some issue.

    There is, of course, a problem inherent, at the very least from a PR standpoint, in taking someone who has disagreed with you and disciplining them for having made that disagreeing statement in an inappropriate manner. But it can be done, and that's why this was taken to the other admins to make the decision, and MS has reviewed it and decided that it was the objectively appropriate decision. Not because of Strilo's opinions but because of his chosen manner of expressing them.

    To address
  6. DarthTunick Arena Streak for Colors Commissioner

    Game Host
    Member Since:
    Nov 26, 2000
    star 10
    Please, don't worry about that. 99.9% users, when quoting a post of mine, always remove the red. It's more surprising when it's left in. :p In regards to the rest of your post, I very much agree with your last point (90% of JC drama, at the end of the day, is meaningless). As for the point about Tim's behavior within in the MS (in contrast to his track record as a mod), I obviously can't attest to very specifics of it (obviously, nobody who wasn't a mod during his tenure can), but it seems like some of that is overblown (I'm sure other mods in the past 7+ years have had their varying degrees of stuborness). Maybe I can tolerate a little more chaos/disagreements/disgruntled behavior in a team setting (I do work at Wally Word, after all :p ), others can not.

    They beat Boston!: 2009-2010 L.A. Lakers: Back-to-Back World Champions :cool:
  7. Espaldapalabras Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 25, 2005
    star 5
    I know this is an odd place to ask, but can we possibly change the name and purpose of the boards now? I stopping coming here for Star Wars years ago like everyone else, and all this Star Wars stuff at the top of the page is sorta embarrassing on public computers.

    But anyways I support the administration in this decision.

    I think anyone who spends 7 years as a mod here probably enjoys the leadership aspect quite a bit. Telling people what to do, even if useful and productive, is something many people like. If that was one of the main reasons for being here, then maybe he feels it just isn't worth his time.

    I don't know anyone involved but it seems like in the end they made a fine decision. Move on, leaving the boards isn't the end of the world, but if you have friends no reason to cut off contact.

    I don't come here for the people that run or own this site, and in the board I post the mods mostly leave the community alone because we're all pretty well behaved or just thicker skinned, and if I didn't enjoy the interactions I had I wouldn't post. I've stepped back on many occasions and was no worse for it.
  8. FlareStorm Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 13, 2000
    star 6
    Is Strilo still tank boss in the Hat?
  9. Healer_Leona Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jul 7, 2000
    star 9
    I'm saddened the Tim would chose to leave the boards and disappointed that MS did not change this decision.
  10. FlareStorm Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 13, 2000
    star 6
    You'll never stop at one! I'll take you all on!
  11. Darth Gangrenous Game Host

    Game Host
    Member Since:
    Jun 1, 2005
    star 10
    JoinTheSchwarz, I apologize for the coarseness of my previous post and was basically just venting because of how close to home this has hit with me. A while back I lost a job that I had had for nearly 13 years and my many years of above par service to the company didn't factor into their decision to fire me. Instead of it being for being forcefully opinionated, it was due to them misunderstanding what I had meant in a situation one night when we were short handed.
  12. shanerjedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 17, 2010
    star 4
    Yeah JoinTheSchwarz is right. There was no rollover in MS over this decision. People had their opinions. Some wanted Tim to be reinstated. Others did not. But everyone was allowed to voice their opinion.
    But MS had an honest airing of everyone's opinions.

    Edit

    I would like to add one more thing:

    Just want to thank Tim for starting the process to bring me into PT and for being a great moderator over the years.

    Looking forward to seeing you in PT as an active user.

    Cheers.

    :cool:

  13. Dark Lady Mara Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 19, 1999
    star 7
    It's a shame things had to go this way (on all sides). I'm not sure what else to say beyond that. I'm sorry to see you leave the boards, Tim.
  14. FlareStorm Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 13, 2000
    star 6
    I'm probably wrong in my recollection but it feels to me that in the last 3-4 Crisises of Infinite JC, the "The Administration could have handled this better" card always get thrown out. Maybe its a canned response, or maybe there's a problem with the Administration.
  15. harpua Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Mar 12, 2005
    star 8
    1. Head admin who doesn't listen.
    2. Tech admin who does pretty much nothing technical (aside from banners), and never says anything - aside from echoing what the head admin says.
    3. Head admin's PR guy... who echoes what the head admin says.
  16. Grand_Admiral_Grant Ex-Mod

    Member Since:
    Nov 30, 2004
    star 6
    Havent posted much recently, but since I always valued Tim as both friend and mod (in that order) and this was mentioned to me, I have to add my basically irrelevant opinion. Irrelevant since the decision will not be reversed anyways at it would mean the head-admin lose so much face he wouldnt be able to function as such anymore.

    But anyways, yes, Tim could be a pain in the ass. Yes, Tim could intimidate others and yes, he could be very direct and open with his criticism. Yet, if another mod couldnt even stand the criticism of a follow mod in the protected environment of MS, I come to think of the saying "if you cant stand the heat, get out of the freaking kitchen". I hired many people at my office to work in my team over the years, and you know what? I always chose the most vocal ones. Not because it was easier to work with them, but because they keep you on top of things, they drive you forward and they are the ones keeping things alive. Im getting the feeling many didnt like the way Tim handled things in MS, but question yourselves, how many did confront Tim in private, via PM, about it? Im betting only one or two. Yet, when this issue pops up all of sudden a majority of MS seems to hate the way Tim handled things. Is that the new modly way of handling things? Keeping quite until somebody else speaks up, complains and then silently follow the leader? Im not criticizing all of MS here, dont get me wrong. But to all you who never said anything to Tim directly, yet now axed him because he was somewhat too vocal and too direct: kudos, a real mod-worthy behavior... =D=

    But even that is a moot point compared to the disrespectful way this has been handled. I mean here you have a guy who voluntarily spend hours of his time doing whatever he could here. Yet, because some people werent able to deal with him, he simply gets dumped, kicked out and finally also get pissed over with a shower of insults. Sorry, but there is no other way to say it.

    Tim is a good guy, he can be difficult at times, he isnt perfect but he was somebody you could count on. Regardless of what he has done, he did not deserve this. To finish this with a simple "Oh, we're sorry, we'll think of ways how we should deal with this in the future"" is not just lame, it is only making things worse.. Give Tim the credit he deserves and give him a fair chance.
  17. harpua Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Mar 12, 2005
    star 8
    As much as I do love the comic cover, I don't think it's really appropriate for this thread, harps.
  18. Grimby Technical Consultant

    Administrator
    Member Since:
    Apr 22, 2000
    star 7
    Well this is the real catch-22, isn't it? We made the decision to be transparent in this thread and explain why we came to the conclusions we did, but as it involves incidents and behavior that are less than admirable, that comes off as Strilo getting "pissed over with a shower of insults." There was no easy way to end this because Strilo didn't want to leave, and there is no easy way to explain it.

    So while a lot of you will continue to argue that we made this decision "because some people weren't able to deal with him," the point you're missing is that he was either unable or unwilling to work with us. The entirety of MS is made up of people who volunteer their time to do whatever they can here. Someone who had been around as long as Strilo is always someone you want to look to because of their knowledge and experience. But when approaching him with questions or issues, we did not get the response of someone who was willing to work out differences or work with us to resolve problems. What we received over the last year and half were condescending responses, insults, and a lack of respect for the majority of MS. As Havac said, this is not something you ever saw in public, this is what was happening behind the scenes.

    I don't expect a lot of people to agree with this decision because Strilo was liked by many people here. Even for me, this was not an easy decision to make, I knew this was going to be highly controversial, and I knew I wasn't going to be a very popular person for doing it. But you don't make decisions based on what you think people's reactions are going to be, and you don't make decisions based on who is or isn't going to be your friend afterward. Admins have to be the bad guys sometimes, and you can hate me all you want for the decisions that I've made, but at least respect the fact that I'm willing to do what I think is right for this site and the rest of the people who sacrifice their time to run it.

    Speaking of which, this final decision was based on the the opinions of MS as a whole, so even if you don't agree with me or the admins, at least respect the decision reached by the mods.
  19. Sith-Lord-Gunray Ex-Mod

    Member Since:
    Aug 20, 2003
    star 6
    Did you run a required poll in MS?


    edit: after reading GAG's post again I have a question related to that. The moderators who sided in demoting Tim for his behavior - how many exactly pmed him first to discuss their issue with him? Why would it possibly be considered acceptable to wait until things get worse, then just push him out? Why not think logically? I mean, moderators are meant to be something of mediators, and think along that line. Mediators discuss things one on one first and then move up from there. They should know that. How many actually did that, out of the 40 or 50 in MS?
  20. jedichef1 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 17, 2004
    star 5
    So you are now saying that the majority of MS approached Strilo and asked him to come onside and work as a team, rather than being hard to work with? and he refused this to all of those who approached him and he just insulted and was condescending and showed a lack of respect?

    I have to ask, why was he not banned for continual abuse of other members?

    He himself asked why no one besides yourself approached him on these issues, he himself has come out and said he would work along with whatever you proposed.

    It seems to me you are changing the story a little bit here and there to suit now.

    Again I ask, if he was so bad and did all of the things you have now stated he did, why no ban? after all you banned yourself for doing something similiar?
  21. Grimby Technical Consultant

    Administrator
    Member Since:
    Apr 22, 2000
    star 7
    Not an actual poll SLG, but we kept track of the responses in our discussion thread. More than half of the 42 mods were of the opinion that he should not come back.

    chef, I was not the only person who came to him with concerns or issues, Rogue...Jedi did as well, as he has already noted in this thread. He received the same types of responses, and it was a pattern that goes back to notes made by multiple admins in the past. As has also been noted in this thread, Strilo had already been banned previously for his behavior toward other moderators.

    Strilo did say he would be willing to contribute, but that was only after I recommended that he step down. Before that, he told me he refused to contribute (which he did later take back), but later also sent me a long and very level-headed reply in which he stated he wouldn't contribute because he didn't approve of the leadership.

    So no, there was no ban considered because it had already been done, he had been confronted by multiple admins, and it had been a long history of the same types of behavior. My ban was for a single PM that I sent, which is not the same thing.
  22. Strilo Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Aug 6, 2001
    star 8
    Okay wait a second. I was banned by Sape because I unlocked a thread that KK locked in MS in an attempt to shut down discussion on something that affected him directly. This was something the head admin did NOT approve of and KK was punished for doing that. I was banned as well for unlocking a thread that was locked by an admin, Sape himself said that was the only issue, he was not bothered by anything I said or how I said it. I was never banned or punished in any other way, not for anything I did or said in forums or anything else in MS. Never once was I punished for how I interacted with other mods in MS.

    And let's be clear. I said to you in PM that I would not be able to fully participate in MS like I used to under Sape, Rhonda or 506. I did not say that I would not participate at all because I did not have confidence in the leaders. I was fine trying to find some new balance of participation that would satisfy the admins. But I knew that new balance would not be as dedicated and involved as it was years before. Grimby when I calmly explained that I could not contribute to MS as I used to so long as you were an admin, I was telling you why I could not participate to the previous levels I had before. I was pretty clear that I was willing to work on how I interacted with other moderators and other admins and I showed that with my actions. I had done so previously on an issue that came up about one of my edits weeks before the whole sequence of events that led to your ban and my demotion. My actions back up my words that I was willing to work at how I interacted with MS.

    The amount of effort I made to work with MS in the week or so that I had, plus the examples of behavior from the last few months in MS, should have been enough for you admins to reconsider and turn this demotion into a suspension. Otherwise, you've gone from a 48 hour ban five years ago to a permanent demotion without any intermediate steps. You would never do that with a user. Why then do it with someone who has spent seven years caring about the forums and being a good mod in his forums?
  23. Im_just_guessing Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 23, 2002
    star 7
    Grimby, you banning yourself for an infraction instead of resigning is like if Nixon came back after a couple days at Camp David and was like "Alright, I took a break, all is forgiven now lets just forget it happened"
  24. Champion of the Force Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 27, 1999
    star 4
    No offense to anyone here, but I think it's time to wind this thing up. ObiWan506 did it best - had a bitch, then ta cya later thanks for listening.

    Admins have made their decision and have announced it; several ex-admin/mods (and some other posters) have posted their own responses to them, which in turn has gotten a couple more clarifications from the powers-that-be.

    I can't see where else this thread is supposed to go that's going to function in any constructive way. Most of the posts in the last day or so seem like copy-and-paste jobs from a week ago - there's nothing new here and it's only going back over old ground again and again. Undoubtedly some still want to go over everything with a fine comb and pick out details but the decision has been made, and it's not like it's going to make any real difference overall. It's pretty much just turning into vent session - yes, people are pissed and are still pissed regardless, but I don't think anything more said here is going to satisfy them.

    Time to end this merry-go-round and move on. [face_peace]
  25. Sith-Lord-Gunray Ex-Mod

    Member Since:
    Aug 20, 2003
    star 6
    There are two topics in this thread - Strilo's demotion, which yes, has already happened and is in the past. That's not questionable anymore. But the 2nd is the process that took place for that to happen. His demotion is still a good example for that, which I think is why it's still being discussed. I mean, this was a pretty big mistake so I don't think 2 weeks later it's ok to say "Alright we learned everything we could from this, we'll be more careful next time." There were a lot of mistakes made, at multiple points, by multiple people, even in the resolution process, and MS's current progress on making sure that doesn't happen again needs to continue to be communicated with the lesser folk.

    Besides, repetitive whining for useless reasons is the point of Comms, no? (no offense)
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