Re: Aggressive language on python-list

Discussion in 'Python' started by rurpy@yahoo.com, Oct 15, 2012.

  1. Guest

    On 10/14/2012 03:58 PM, Ben Finney wrote:> Zero Piraeus <>writes:
    >[...]
    > What's needed, IMO, is a difficult balance: there needs to be calm,
    > low-volume, but firm response to instances of hostile behaviour, making
    > clear by demonstration – especially to the people only observing the
    > discussion – that such hostility is unwanted and not to be tolerated in
    > our community.
    >[...]


    The problem with this is that while there may sometimes be a
    weak consensus, different people have different ideas about
    what is "wrong". Thus when a member of this esteemed group
    was recently attacked as racist, for punning another member's
    name when responding somewhat heatedly, I, according to your
    view, should have jumped in to point out unfair accusations
    of racism are not only wrong, but hurt the cause of anti-racism
    by devaluing such charges when they are legitimate.

    No, what you propose will only reduce the signal to noise ratio
    and increase the amount of off-topic arguments.

    The old tried-and-true advise is still the best: don't feed the
    trolls. Experience with three decades of mailing lists and usenet
    has shown that most of them give up and go somewhere else when
    they don't get a response.

    Of course this does not apply when you are the one attacked (or
    perceive you are) -- in that case your advice for a low-key
    factual response is quite appropriate. (And then drop it.)

    > To those who feel the need to “fight” the trolls: thank you for caring
    > enough about the Python community to try to defend it. But I'm concerned
    > that you tend to pour fuel on the flames yourself, and I hope you can
    > work to avoid becoming the monster you fight.
    >
    >> And, yes, I know bringing it up could be construed as stoking the
    >> flames ... but, well, "silence = acquiescence" and all that.

    >
    > Agreed. Thanks again.


    No. Silence != acquiescence as a few minutes of thought will
    show. The fact that it is often repeated does not make it
    true.
    , Oct 15, 2012
    #1
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  2. alex23 Guest

    On Oct 15, 1:22 pm, wrote:
    > Thus when a member of this esteemed group
    > was recently attacked as racist, for punning another member's
    > name when responding somewhat heatedly,


    Again, there is a difference between "attacking" someone "as racist"
    and *criticising* their *comments* as *possibly* racist. When the
    person whose name was being punned said that they themselves were
    unsure whether it was intended as a racial attack, then the behaviour
    was worth commenting on.

    If anything, I initially *joked* about it as a means of trying to
    point out the issue in a non-offensive way. If there was any
    "attacking" going on, it was in the criticised party's responses.

    > hurt the cause of anti-racism


    My response had nothing to do with "agendas" and "causes" and
    everything to do with wanting to keep specific forms of discourse off
    this list. I had identical issues with the same person's use of
    "bitch" and "whore"; I cannot begin to fathom how stating that they're
    unacceptable to use here is in any way damaging to the anti-sexism
    position, or an attack on the person saying them.
    alex23, Oct 15, 2012
    #2
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  3. Guest

    On 10/14/2012 10:36 PM, alex23 wrote:> On Oct 15, 1:22 pm, wrote:
    >> Thus when a member of this esteemed group
    >> was recently attacked as racist, for punning another member's
    >> name when responding somewhat heatedly,

    >
    > Again, there is a difference between "attacking" someone "as racist"
    > and *criticising* their *comments* as *possibly* racist. When the
    > person whose name was being punned said that they themselves were
    > unsure whether it was intended as a racial attack, then the behaviour
    > was worth commenting on.


    I just went back and reread what you and some others wrote
    to make sure I was not misremembering and am comfortable
    sticking with my description. (FTR, your initial response
    was "Please, don't be a dick.")

    My intent was not to reargue that issue but to point out
    that different people have differing ideas on what is
    "acceptable" and "unacceptable" here and that if Ben
    Finney's advice to respond (in moderation) whenever one
    reads an "unacceptable" opinion is taken, one will create
    an environment in which troll's will flourish.

    The best advise is to ignore such posts and encourage
    others to do the same.
    , Oct 16, 2012
    #3
  4. On Tue, 16 Oct 2012 09:27:48 -0700, rurpy wrote about trolls and dicks:

    > The best advise is to ignore such posts and encourage others to do the
    > same.


    If you ignore such posts, how will the poster know they are unacceptable?

    How should somebody distinguish between "I am being shunned for acting
    like a dick", and "I have not received any responses because nobody has
    anything to add"?

    If I believe that your behaviour ("giving lousy advice") is causing great
    harm to this community, and *I don't say anything*, how will you know to
    change your behaviour? How will others know that I do not agree with your
    advice?


    --
    Steven
    Steven D'Aprano, Oct 16, 2012
    #4
  5. Steven D'Aprano wrote:

    > On Tue, 16 Oct 2012 09:27:48 -0700, rurpy wrote about trolls and dicks:
    >

    > > The best advise is to ignore such posts and encourage others to do the
    > > same.

    >
    > If you ignore such posts, how will the poster know they are unacceptable?
    >
    > How should somebody distinguish between "I am being shunned for acting
    > like a dick", and "I have not received any responses because nobody has
    > anything to add"?
    >
    > If I believe that yourbehaviour ("giving lousy advice") is causing great
    > harm to this community, and *I don't say anything*, how will you know to
    > change yourbehaviour? How will others know that I do not agree with your
    > advice?
    >
    >


    I agree completely. I was about to say thatI was fine with meeting
    known trolls with silence, but what happens when new or infrequent
    readers see the troll's writing with no one objecting? Are they to
    ignore the troll or assume that the list condones the troll's words?

    ~Ramit


    This email is confidential and subject to important disclaimers and
    conditions including onoffers for the purchase or sale of
    securities, accuracy and completeness of information, viruses,
    confidentiality, legal privilege, and legal entity disclaimers,
    available at http://www.jpmorgan.com/pages/disclosures/email.
    Prasad, Ramit, Oct 16, 2012
    #5
  6. Guest

    On 10/16/2012 10:49 AM, Steven D'Aprano wrote:
    > > On Tue, 16 Oct 2012 09:27:48 -0700, rurpy wrote about trolls and dicks:


    No, I wrote about trolls. "dicks" is a highly emotive and
    almost totally subjective word that I would not use in a
    rational discussion. Perhaps you were trying to be amusing?

    >> >> The best advise is to ignore such posts and encourage others to do the
    >> >> same.

    > >
    > > If you ignore such posts, how will the poster know they are unacceptable?


    Do you really think that in the vast majority of cases that
    the poster is blithely unaware of the inflammatory nature
    of their post? The whole point of trolling is to generate
    responses by posting something inflammatory. It sounds to
    me like your view is that most such posts are made by people
    who are simply brand new to the internet (or at least the
    civilized parts of it) and thus, when their error is pointed
    out, will say thanks and change their ways.

    > > How should somebody distinguish between "I am being shunned for acting
    > > like a dick", and "I have not received any responses because nobody has
    > > anything to add"?


    Because you sent them private email telling them that? (And
    if you can't do that, maybe you should take it as a hint that
    they're not particularly interested in your "help"?)

    > > If I believe that your behaviour ("giving lousy advice") is causing great
    > > harm to this community, and *I don't say anything*, how will you know to
    > > change your behaviour?


    If that was how you thought, then you would be someone I hope
    would follow my advice. Because you would clearly seem to be
    unable to distinguish between difference of opinion on a
    subject relevant to the newsgroup, and inflammatory trolling.
    Further you see the situation in extreme terms ("*great
    harm*") and one in which only a single point of view (your's)
    is acceptable. You would be bordering on delusional by
    thinking your post would somehow change my "behavior".

    But even if you had a more rational response and saved
    that reaction for actual trolling and not someone who
    simply disagreed with you, I ask again, what makes you
    think your response will change that troll's behavior,
    when in actuality, your kind of response is exactly what
    most trolls hope to elicit? Did it help in the case I
    mentioned?

    > > How will others know that I do not agree with your
    > > advice?


    Why is it so important to you that I and others know what
    you think? Since you are (usually) a reasonable person I
    don't need to read your explicit pronouncement to assume
    that you disagree with some repugnant post.

    If it were possible to somehow have a single, reasonable
    response generated to an offensive post, that would be great.
    But I don't think that is possible. Multiple people will
    feel the need to take on that duty. Others will feel the
    response is not strong enough or doesn't represent their
    personal take and post their responses. Some will respond
    righteously to non-offensive posts. (The use of "troll"
    as a synonym for "I/we don't agree with you" is quite
    noticeable in this group.) The perp will inevitably
    followup with more offensive posts in response. This
    is how things have worked since the invention of mailing
    lists and why "don't feed the trolls" has served fairly
    well for three decades.
    , Oct 16, 2012
    #6
  7. Guest

    On 10/16/2012 02:17 PM, Prasad, Ramit wrote:> Steven D'Aprano wrote:
    >> On Tue, 16 Oct 2012 09:27:48 -0700, rurpy wrote about trolls and dicks:
    >>
    >> > The best advise is to ignore such posts and encourage others to do the
    >> > same.

    >>
    >> If you ignore such posts, how will the poster know they are unacceptable?
    >>
    >> How should somebody distinguish between "I am being shunned for acting
    >> like a dick", and "I have not received any responses because nobody has
    >> anything to add"?
    >>
    >> If I believe that your behaviour ("giving lousy advice") is causing great
    >> harm to this community, and *I don't say anything*, how will you know to
    >> change your behaviour? How will others know that I do not agree with your
    >> advice?

    >
    > I agree completely. I was about to say that I was fine with meeting
    > known trolls with silence, but what happens when new or infrequent
    > readers see the troll's writing with no one objecting? Are they to
    > ignore the troll or assume that the list condones the troll's words?


    You do not give enough credit to people. The vast majority
    of people are capable of recognizing offensive posts and
    recognizing that non-response to them is intentional. I
    think it is absurd to think that most normal people will
    see such posts and conclude that all Python programmers
    agree with them. (No time to look it up but I vaguely
    recall a long series of anti-semitic posts here that were
    largely ignored. I've seen no evidence that there are
    people who brand the Python community as anti-semitic.)
    , Oct 16, 2012
    #7
  8. On Tue, 16 Oct 2012 14:10:17 -0700, rurpy wrote:

    > On 10/16/2012 10:49 AM, Steven D'Aprano wrote:
    >> > On Tue, 16 Oct 2012 09:27:48 -0700, rurpy wrote about trolls and
    >> > dicks:

    >
    > No, I wrote about trolls. "dicks" is a highly emotive and almost
    > totally subjective word


    As opposed to "troll", which is unemotional and objective? Not.


    > that I would not use in a rational discussion.


    I would. If someone is acting like a dick, why not call them by the word
    that most accurately describes their behaviour?

    I see nothing troll like in Dwight "call me David, but I can't be
    bothered changing my signature" Hutto's behaviour. He doesn't seem to be
    trolling, in either sense: he doesn't appear to be making provocative
    statements for the purpose of making people think, nor does he seem to be
    making inflammatory statements to get a rise out of people. He seems to
    genuinely want to help people, in a clumsy, aggressive, and I believe
    often intoxicated way.

    So it seems to me that you are wrongly applying the term "troll" as a
    meaningless pejorative to anyone who behaves badly.


    > Perhaps you were trying to be amusing?


    Certainly not.


    >>> >> The best advise is to ignore such posts and encourage others to do
    >>> >> the same.

    [...]
    >> > How should somebody distinguish between "I am being shunned for
    >> > acting like a dick", and "I have not received any responses because
    >> > nobody has anything to add"?

    >
    > Because you sent them private email telling them that?


    My, what a ... unique ... concept of "ignore such posts" you have.

    So far, this has been the best advice you have given so far. My opinion
    is that there is a graduated response to dickish behaviour:

    * send a message telling the person they are acting unacceptably,
    preferably privately on a first offence to avoid public shaming
    (when possible -- lots of people aren't privately contactable
    for many reasons other than that they are trolls);

    * if the behaviour continues, make a public comment condemning
    that behaviour generally without engaging directly in a debate
    or "tit-for-tat" argument with the person.


    And for those who value their own peace and quiet over the community
    benefit:

    * block or killfile posts from that person so they don't
    have to be seen, preferably publicly.

    When I killfile someone, I tend to make it expire after a month or three,
    just in case they mend their ways. Call me Mr Softy if you like.


    [...]
    >> > If I believe that your behaviour ("giving lousy advice") is causing
    >> > great harm to this community, and *I don't say anything*, how will
    >> > you know to change your behaviour?

    >
    > If that was how you thought, then you would be someone I hope would
    > follow my advice. Because you would clearly seem to be unable to
    > distinguish between difference of opinion on a subject relevant to the
    > newsgroup, and inflammatory trolling. Further you see the situation in
    > extreme terms ("*great harm*") and one in which only a single point of
    > view (your's) is acceptable.


    As opposed to only your opinion being acceptable? Why on earth should I
    follow your advice if I think it is bad advice?

    We can't both be right[1]. We can't simultaneously confront bad
    behaviour, and ignore bad behaviour. I think your advice is bad, and has
    the potential to kill this community. You think my advice is bad, and has
    the potential to kill this community. Except that you've made a 180-
    degree turn from your advice to "ignore" bad behaviour, but apparently
    didn't notice that *sending private emails* is not by any definition
    "ignoring". So apparently you don't actually agree with your own advice.


    > You would be bordering on delusional by
    > thinking your post would somehow change my "behavior".


    It's not necessarily about changing your behaviour. (Well, in this case,
    it's less about you than about Dwight Hutto specifically and badly-
    behaved posters in general.) It's about sending a message that the
    behaviour is unacceptable.

    The primary purpose of that message is to discourage *others* from
    following in the same behaviour. Nothing will kill a forum faster than
    trolls and dicks feeding off each other, until there is nothing left but
    trolls and dicks. A single troll doesn't do much harm -- few of them have
    the energy to spam a news group for long periods, drowning out useful
    posts.


    > But even if you had a more rational response


    *raises eyebrow*

    > and saved that reaction for
    > actual trolling and not someone who simply disagreed with you, I ask
    > again, what makes you think your response will change that troll's
    > behavior, when in actuality, your kind of response is exactly what most
    > trolls hope to elicit? Did it help in the case I mentioned?


    As I said, I do not believe that Dwight Hutto is a troll. I believe he is
    merely badly behaved. And yes, I do believe that confronting him has
    changed his behaviour, at least for now.

    Not immediately, of course. His immediate response was to retaliate and
    defend himself. Naturally -- very few people are self-honest enough to
    admit, even to themselves, when they are behaving badly.

    But in the intervening weeks, we, this community, has done anything but
    ignore him. We're still talking about him *right now*. We're just not
    necessarily talking *to* him. And the few times that people do respond
    directly to Dwight, they make it very clear that their response is
    guarded and on sufferance.

    And there have been no further outbursts from Dwight, at least not so
    far. So, yes, I think we've gotten the message across.


    >> > How will others know that I do not agree with your advice?

    >
    > Why is it so important to you that I and others know what you think?
    > Since you are (usually) a reasonable person I don't need to read your
    > explicit pronouncement to assume that you disagree with some repugnant
    > post.


    You are assuming we all agree on what is repugnant. That pretty much
    demonstrates that you have missed my point. Without drawing explicit
    boundaries, how do people know what we consider beyond the boundary of
    acceptable behaviour?

    The people in this forum come from all over the world. We're not all
    white, middle-class[2], Australian, educated, progressive/liberals like
    me. We're black, Chinese, German, conservative, Muslim, Christian,
    atheist, socialist, anarchist, fascist, etc. We come from all sorts of
    cultures, where families are run like democracies, or where they are run
    like dictatorships where the father is the head of the household even of
    his adult children; cultures that consider euthanasia beyond the pale and
    those that believe that there are fates worse than death; cultures where
    smacking children is an abomination and cultures where it is simply
    common sense; cultures that condone honour-killings and those that don't;
    cultures where blowing yourself up to kill the enemy is thought to be an
    act of bravery, and cultures where pushing a button to kill strangers a
    thousand miles away is thought to be an honourable act of military
    service.

    What on earth makes you think we would possibly agree on what posts are
    repugnant without talking about it?

    I'm sure that there are some people here -- and you might be one of them
    -- that consider my use of the word "dick" unacceptable. And others who
    consider dick a mild word and far less offensive than the euphemisms
    others might prefer.

    Your opinion that we should all, somehow, agree on acceptable behaviour
    is culturally self-centred and rather naive. I'm far more offended by
    Dwight's habit of posting incoherently while pissed[3] than I am by his
    possibly-or-possibly-not racist punning. But I don't expect everyone to
    agree with me.




    [1] However, we can both be wrong. There's no reason to think that there
    is *any* strategy to respond to bad behaviour that will work all the
    time, against all people.

    [2] Nearly everybody thinks they're middle-class, except the filthy rich
    and the filthy poor.

    [3] I don't give a damn what mind-altering chemicals Dwight wishes to
    indulge in, so long as he does it in private.


    --
    Steven
    Steven D'Aprano, Oct 17, 2012
    #8
  9. On Wed, 17 Oct 2012 02:45:04 +0000, Steven D'Aprano wrote:

    > Dwight "call me David, but I can't be bothered changing my signature"
    > Hutto's behaviour.


    I withdraw this dig at David Hutto. It was unnecessary, and it turns out,
    wrong as he has now changed his signature.


    --
    Steven
    Steven D'Aprano, Oct 17, 2012
    #9
  10. rusi Guest

    On Oct 16, 9:27 pm, wrote:
    > On 10/14/2012 10:36 PM, alex23 wrote:> On Oct 15, 1:22 pm, wrote:
    >
    > >> Thus when a member of this esteemed group
    > >> was recently attacked as racist, for punning another member's
    > >> name when responding somewhat heatedly,

    >
    > > Again, there is a difference between "attacking" someone "as racist"
    > > and *criticising* their *comments* as *possibly* racist. When the
    > > person whose name was being punned said that they themselves were
    > > unsure whether it was intended as a racial attack, then the behaviour
    > > was worth commenting on.

    >
    > I just went back and reread what you and some others wrote
    > to make sure I was not misremembering and am comfortable
    > sticking with my description.  (FTR, your initial response
    > was "Please, don't be a dick.")
    >
    > My intent was not to reargue that issue but to point out
    > that different people have differing ideas on what is
    > "acceptable" and "unacceptable" here and that if Ben
    > Finney's advice to respond (in moderation) whenever one
    > reads an "unacceptable" opinion is taken, one will create
    > an environment in which troll's will flourish.
    >
    > The best advise is to ignore such posts and encourage
    > others to do the same.


    Trolling posts certainly exist. And when 'troll' becomes a short-form
    for 'one-who-regularly-trolls' its fine as long as we remember that
    its a metonymy.

    When we forget
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FMEe7JqBgvg
    should help by:
    1. Showing how to deal with trolling
    2. Reminding that such beings dont actually exist except as caricature

    Coming to current misbehavior on the list -- specifically Etienne's
    outburst against Steven,
    I am reminded of a similar situation a year ago

    Long thread -- Relevant starting is here
    http://mail.python.org/pipermail/python-list/2011-May/604893.html

    Abusive post
    http://mail.python.org/pipermail/python-list/2011-May/604914.html

    Maybe easier to read
    http://groups.google.com/group/comp...read/thread/17dca3bf467c9001/c53102a45da19386

    The last thing that John Bokma posted (to the best of my knowledge)
    was:

    > Ben Finney <ben at benfinney.id.au> writes:
    >
    >>> Get a life. Or better, just **** off and die. It will improve both the
    >>> world and the Python community, of which you are nothing but a little,
    >>> smelly shitstain.

    >>
    >> That abuse is entirely unwelcome in this community, against any person.
    >> Please desist.


    > You should have spoken up sooner, especially as the spokes person of
    > "this" community. But every bully has is fan club.
    >
    > --
    > John Bokma


    If we think/feel that John Bokma was trolling then driving him off the
    list was a good thing.
    If not we need to question whether those actions were collectively
    sound.

    Specifically Steven's post that triggered Etienne's misbehavior is
    this:

    On Oct 5, 5:22 am, Steven D'Aprano <steve
    > wrote:
    > On Thu, 04 Oct 2012 14:10:46 -0400, Etienne Robillard wrote:
    > > Dear list,

    >
    > > Due to lack of energy and resources i'm really sad to announce the
    > > removal ofnotmmfrom pypi and bitbucket.

    >
    > Well that's just rude. Even if you don't intend to maintain the software
    > any more, why are you removing it from pypi? Since you say you are a fan
    > of Open Source software, just flag it as unmaintained and leave it for
    > somebody else to pick up.
    >
    > If you are going to abandon the project, release it on PyPI with a dual
    > MIT and GPL licence, and let it be taken over by somebody else.
    >
    > If you were looking for sympathy here, starting off by removing your
    > project from free hosting, then complaining that you can't pay for the
    > non-free hosting, was NOT the right way to do so.

    :

    > Steven


    I read Etienne as saying: 'I need money (or at least some sympathy)'
    Steven is unequivocally saying 'You are not getting it from here'

    Technically he is correct; humanly I am not so sure.

    [I have a personal regret that I did not rebut Steven's rudeness with
    a '... that is not necessarily the view of the whole group...'
    I hesitated to do so because I am not adept at giving sympathy without
    giving false hope and keeping the post at reasonable length.
    Anyhow this (too long) post is an attempt at correcting that.]

    In the earlier (Quora-thread) Terry Reedy's voice was most balanced
    and sane; unfortunately covered in the 'dog-pile' of all the rest.

    Hopefully he will put in his word here as well.
    [And Zero thank you for starting this thread]

    Rusi

    - http://blog.languager.org
    rusi, Oct 17, 2012
    #10
  11. alex23 Guest

    On Oct 17, 1:54 pm, "Kristen J. Webb" <> wrote:
    > Let's be honest, does any of this crap have
    > anything to do with python, it's promotion,
    > or resolving anything related to making it
    > one of the most exciting languages I have
    > ever seen since C?


    Python is more than the language, it's the community as well.
    Discussing acceptable behaviour on a community mailing list is highly
    relevant. Wanting to stop behaviour that could potentially drive
    people away from the language is very much about promotion.

    > It sucks for me to spend so much time filtering this BS.


    Yet you then chose to participate in a discussion about it. Because
    that's what people do to discuss suitable behaviour.

    I really don't get people who feel they need to share their opinion
    when that opinion is that other people shouldn't share theirs.
    alex23, Oct 17, 2012
    #11
  12. rusi Guest

    On Oct 17, 9:25 am, alex23 <> wrote:
    > On Oct 17, 1:54 pm, "Kristen J. Webb" <> wrote:
    >
    > > It sucks for me to spend so much time filtering this BS.

    >
    > Yet you then chose to participate in a discussion about it. Because
    > that's what people do to discuss suitable behaviour.
    >
    > I really don't get people who feel they need to share their opinion
    > when that opinion is that other people shouldn't share theirs.


    Ha Ha!
    Let me try to restate alex without the barb.

    What exactly do you (Kristen) find to be BS?

    If its the one-line endorsement from David to Steven, Ive no comment
    or opinion
    If its the hundreds of lines of Steven's post, it would be good if
    your mail-quoting singles that out.
    If its Zero's OP then I am sorry, but many of us think that something
    needs to be said.

    In case its the length of Steven's post here's my attempt at improving
    his S/N ration:
    There are dicks and there are trolls. Behavior can be improved by
    calling right things by the right names.

    [My addition]:
    1. There are no dicks and trolls; there is dick-ing and trolling
    2. jmf's objections to python's unicode is classic trolling. David's
    abusive language is dicking.
    Using the right name helps to find the right strategy
    rusi, Oct 17, 2012
    #12
  13. Terry Reedy Guest

    On 10/16/2012 11:47 PM, Kristen J. Webb wrote:

    > I will say that my perusal of this list has been
    > informative. I also receive more email from this
    > list than any other I subscribe to.


    You could instead access it as a newsgroup via news.gmane.org. That
    keeps posts isolated and you only download those item you request. News
    readers should collapse threads to a single line and allow you to mark
    all as read.

    --
    Terry Jan Reedy
    Terry Reedy, Oct 17, 2012
    #13
  14. alex23 Guest

    On Oct 17, 2:43 pm, rusi <> wrote:
    > Let me try to restate alex without the barb.


    Do you offer this service for hire? :)
    alex23, Oct 17, 2012
    #14
  15. On Tue, 16 Oct 2012 21:25:38 -0700, alex23 wrote:

    > I really don't get people who feel they need to share their opinion when
    > that opinion is that other people shouldn't share theirs.


    +1 QOTW

    It makes me laugh when newcomers to this group stick their head up to
    chastise us for arguing about the culture of this group. The irony is
    that that is *precisely* what they too are doing.

    In an ideal world, we'd all agree on what counts as acceptable behaviour,
    and stick to it, and discuss nothing but Python coding problems. But we
    don't live in an idea world, and there are disagreements and people
    behaving badly, and arguments about such, and meta-arguments about the
    arguments.

    Welcome to humanity.

    And more importantly, welcome to democracy -- this is not a dictatorship,
    there is no Supreme Glorious Leader who decides what is on- and off-
    topic, no Thought Police to ban you for straying from the straight and
    narrow of what is allowed. And thank goodness for that. I've been on
    lists that do have such policies, and they tend to give lousy advice
    badly and have a culture of group-think.

    Sure, it's frustrating to have to hit delete on a bunch of posts you
    don't care about. But that's true regardless of the topic or the list.
    Last night I deleted about 300 emails about designing a new asynchronous
    library that I had no desire to take part in. Did I post an angry screed
    calling it BS? No I did not, because I'm aware that even if I'm not
    interested in it, it is a part of Python culture and *somebody* needs to
    deal with it. I'm just glad its not me.



    --
    Steven
    Steven D'Aprano, Oct 17, 2012
    #15
  16. rusi Guest

    On Oct 17, 11:15 am, alex23 <> wrote:
    > On Oct 17, 2:43 pm, rusi <> wrote:
    >
    > > Let me try to restate alex without the barb.

    >
    > Do you offer this service for hire? :)


    Hmm now thats an idea…
    Are you offering to hire? [Considering how many jobs Ive changed,
    never know whats next!]

    Rusi
    --

    http://blog.languager.org
    rusi, Oct 17, 2012
    #16
  17. On Wed, Oct 17, 2012 at 5:24 PM, Steven D'Aprano
    <> wrote:
    > In an ideal world, we'd all agree on what counts as acceptable behaviour,
    > and stick to it, and discuss nothing but Python coding problems. But we
    > don't live in an idea world, and there are disagreements and people
    > behaving badly, and arguments about such, and meta-arguments about the
    > arguments.
    >
    > Welcome to humanity.


    Every negative is a corrupted version of a positive. Why are there
    these sorts of arguments? Because people care about the quality of
    posts. Why have meta-arguments? Because Python programmers have the
    sorts of brains that are good at (and enjoy) such.

    > And more importantly, welcome to democracy -- this is not a dictatorship,
    > there is no Supreme Glorious Leader who decides what is on- and off-
    > topic, no Thought Police to ban you for straying from the straight and
    > narrow of what is allowed. And thank goodness for that. I've been on
    > lists that do have such policies, and they tend to give lousy advice
    > badly and have a culture of group-think.


    Correction: Welcome to anarchy. In a democracy, we'd all vote and
    anyone voted out would be banned. Otherwise, absolutely agree.

    > Sure, it's frustrating to have to hit delete on a bunch of posts you
    > don't care about. But that's true regardless of the topic or the list.
    > Last night I deleted about 300 emails about designing a new asynchronous
    > library that I had no desire to take part in. Did I post an angry screed
    > calling it BS? No I did not, because I'm aware that even if I'm not
    > interested in it, it is a part of Python culture and *somebody* needs to
    > deal with it. I'm just glad its not me.


    Heh, I'm skipping all those posts too - but I'm confident Python will
    be the better for that discussion.

    I'm on many mailing lists. Some quiet, some noisy, some public, some
    private (and don't knock the private ones - it's WAY better to use
    Mailman than huge cc: lists), some courteous, some rude. Not one of
    them is useless to the world. If you don't like python-list, maybe
    there's another forum that's more to your liking - Python is big
    enough to have several. :)

    ChrisA
    Chris Angelico, Oct 17, 2012
    #17
  18. On 17/10/2012 07:24, Steven D'Aprano wrote:
    >
    > And more importantly, welcome to democracy -- this is not a dictatorship,
    >


    Putting my pedantic hat on but there are few if any true democracies in
    the world. Most governments are run on (mis)representative lines. Which
    reminds me I must restart my campaign to be the first world president.
    Seven votes at the last count, another 3.5 billion and I'm first past
    the post.

    --
    Cheers.

    Mark Lawrence.
    Mark Lawrence, Oct 17, 2012
    #18
  19. On 2012-10-17, Steven D'Aprano <> wrote:
    > On Tue, 16 Oct 2012 21:25:38 -0700, alex23 wrote:
    >
    >> I really don't get people who feel they need to share their opinion when
    >> that opinion is that other people shouldn't share theirs.

    >
    > +1 QOTW
    >
    > It makes me laugh when newcomers to this group stick their head up to
    > chastise us for arguing about the culture of this group. The irony is
    > that that is *precisely* what they too are doing.
    >
    > In an ideal world, we'd all agree on what counts as acceptable behaviour,
    > and stick to it, and discuss nothing but Python coding problems.


    I disagree! I think occasional off-topic meta-arguments can be
    interesting and entertaining.

    Yow! Am I having a meta-meta-discussion yet?

    --
    Grant Edwards grant.b.edwards Yow! -- I love KATRINKA
    at because she drives a
    gmail.com PONTIAC. We're going
    away now. I fed the cat.
    Grant Edwards, Oct 17, 2012
    #19
  20. On 2012-10-17, Terry Reedy <> wrote:
    > On 10/16/2012 11:47 PM, Kristen J. Webb wrote:
    >
    >> I will say that my perusal of this list has been
    >> informative. I also receive more email from this
    >> list than any other I subscribe to.

    >
    > You could instead access it as a newsgroup via news.gmane.org. That
    > keeps posts isolated and you only download those item you request. News
    > readers should collapse threads to a single line and allow you to mark
    > all as read.


    I'm a big fan of gmane (though I happen to read this "forum" as
    comp.language.python from a Usenet server). Newsreaders often have
    more sophisticated mechanisms to allow you to filter out certain
    people/topics/whaterver that don't interest you.

    --
    Grant Edwards grant.b.edwards Yow! ... this must be what
    at it's like to be a COLLEGE
    gmail.com GRADUATE!!
    Grant Edwards, Oct 17, 2012
    #20
    1. Advertising

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