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  • posted a message on [C21] Lorehold Legacies— The Command Zone previews
    Isn't the issue of white's performance in Commander something that WotC employees themselves have acknowledged?

    All that was asserted is that white's removal, while still playable, has had the gap in power over the options available in other colors steadily narrow over time while those other colors have also maintained strong advantages in other areas. Black is supposed to have the most efficient spot removal, yes (for creatures); white's spot removal is generally the most versatile. But that versatility counts for less these days since removal options for the other colors have expanded considerably (which also encroaches on black, btw). White's 1 and 2 drops might be slightly more efficient than the ones available in red, but not enough to offset that red also has access to burn and other tools. And its larger drops get outclassed by green, a color with absurd amounts of card advantage and mana resources. This doesn't have to be some hyperbolic crisis to nevertheless be a balance issue. The value of what white has to offer is overall less than any one other color, particularly in the Commander format. It needs to excel in more areas instead of being across the board second or third best. Right now, it has a slight edge on certain kinds of board wipes, but that's not enough for an entire color. It's the most defensive color, so inherently what it most critically needs are ways to win and get ahead in the game, which is where it struggles. And it's not at all an easy problem to solve or, apparently, even discuss with any clarity.

    WotC has been working on it but adjustment to the color pie is typically quite conservative. Cards like Skyclave Apparition or Sigrid, God Favored show some promise through their combination of threat and answer, which I think is one part of a good direction to take the color in. And expanding white's access to scry, which is what got this whole dumpster fire of a discussion going in the first place, makes complete sense since white it's supposed to be the color of planning ahead per MaRo. But what white still needs is to be casting more spells than it currently does. Still, after seeing how they reinvented red these past few years, I'm hopeful for the progress white will make (then we can start talking about black).
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on [STX] Professor Onyx— Danny Trejo preview
    Quote from Xcric »
    What reason is there for her to hide her identity? Is she known on this plane? For being a multiverse everyone sure does know everyone else.

    Easily couldve been any other walker whose storyline HASNT been concluded.

    But sex sells.


    "Instructor who has a secret identity" is a common Magic School trope. There's Harry Potter of course as has been previously mentioned, also Little Witch Academia. It's not as effective to use this trope on an entirely new character for both their true and assumed identities since neither have a pre-established significance for the audience.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on Commander Legends EBAY leaks
    Man this Gisela pronunciation debate is getting to be just about as riveting as talking about how to pronounce gif


    My grandmother's name was Gisela. Ghee-say-la.

    Might be different depending on the language being spoken. My grandmother was German, the French version is Giselle, I believe.

    Edit: literally a grandma in a rocking chair, confirming earlier suspicions
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on [RETIRED] [Admin] bobthefunny's Strategic Chalkboard
    osieorb18, thank you for your clarifictions. This is indeed eye-opening.

    bob, thank you for laying out the process. I am pleased to see you respond in a way that is somewhat helpful. I have quite a lot of other remarks that I have been mulling over with regard to you. For the time being, though, please forward the staff's list of concerns to me so that we may accurately characterize them in our proposal.
    Posted in: Staff Helpdesks
  • posted a message on [RETIRED] [Admin] bobthefunny's Strategic Chalkboard

    So here's the thing:
    I still disagree with the concept that anything and everything is inherently political. Perhaps this is a difference of definition or scope between us.


    You're using the word "political" in its colloquial sense. Which would be fine in most situations where there isn't a need for extreme clarity as there is in this discussion. "Politics" comes from poleis, the city, as in having to do with life in the city. The most precise and technical usage of this word, as a subset of moral theory, is essentially ethics in its social aspect in the broadest possible sense. We should defer to this definition because it is the definition that is favored by expertise and it is necessary for us to gain greater clarity about the topic.

    For example, when you say depicting Queen Linden as a black woman isn't political, I think you mean in a colloquial way something like: we ought to have a consensus that such representation is normal and desirable, that its normalcy is self-evident, and not subject to dispute. And this is exactly where the "devil's advocate" conservative comes in and tries to pick apart at the assumption that it's not political, rationalizing possible objections to the practice to contest its self-evidentiary nature. I prefer to nip this behavior in the bud by acknowledging that the representation is a conscious, intentional choice by WotC to redress the earlier lack of representation in their card art. Yes, this is political and it's not a bad thing that it is. "Politics" doesn't have to be a dirty word here. If you define politics in such a way that its activity is concluded to be pointless (e.g., "people arguing about values that are impossible to resolve"), the definition will be a self-fulfilled prophecy of self-defeat.

    In my experience, the best way to deal with devil's advocates is to beat them at their own game. What conservatives hate most about their perception of "liberals" is that their opponents are wishy-washy relativists, unprincipled pragmatists, who assume they're automatically right because "conservatives are dumb" and so on. I have found it effective to disillusion these notions.

    Similarly, I would point out that my definition of "systemic racism" comes from sociology. As a science, sociology is interested in natural phenomena in its scope of inquiry such as racial disparity. It's an empirical fact that racial disparity exists and, at the risk of oversimplifying, we say racism is the cause of racial disparity. But what does this mean? The idea that the prejudices of individuals is sufficient to explain racial disparity is not supported by the data. What is supported is the idea of historical forces, economic and institutional, forces that people's actions can contribute to even if their conscious intentions contain nothing of the sort as a goal. This goes against the colloquial definition of racism but again we must defer to the definitions that allow our inquiry to proceed rationally.


    2. People are not happy with discussions. There is no if and buts about this. Whenever a political discussion occurs, it is very easy to spot from the reports table - each person immediately reports any comment their opposition makes for being inflammatory. Each person wants us to infract their opposition for being closeminded, a troll, a flamer, or being racist - because clearly people whose views don't match their own are wrong, and immoral.
    3.Other people are not happy with the conversations. My favorite report this year went along the lines of "I respect this persons views, and agree with them, but I am tired of seeing this discussion brought up again in every thread."


    Ok, but you can't separate out the causal effect of you as an administrator making pronouncements against political discussion and the expectation within the community that political discussion will not occur.

    No policy will result in a utopia where everyone is happy. Some people indeed do not want to see political discussions. I suggested earlier they could block the people having them. I think it's better to leave it up to the forum member's choices than having the staff intervene.

    Growing up in school, I remember that it was often the case that children would tattle on one another over every trivial thing. The wisest teachers were the ones who, in most cases, would tell them to resolve their issues on their own to spare themselves an unnecessary workload.


    We do not have the staff to moderate a forum designated to this kind of discussion. We used to have a forum dedicated to this type of discussion, we did not have the staff then, and the forum devolved into 4chan lite. I have no desire to moderate a 4chan lite, nor do I believe it is feasible, nor appropriate for this site. Perhaps one day we will have staff that is interested in bringing this back, and willing to moderate it, and perhaps even make it appropriate for the site. Currently, none of those are true. I will die on this hill.


    You might end up having to die on that hill unless you can assure me that you're taking actions that will make this possible.


    In fact, that this ONE thread has managed to get derailed, in a matter of hours, I think clearly shows the difficulties that a thread dedicated to politics will bring, let alone an entire forum dedicated to this concept.


    This thread had a digression, although I found it to be useful because it shed clarity on an issue as a case example and it resolved itself and we moved back to the original topic shortly. Maybe my tolerance for digressions is unusually high. This is why I don't want hair-trigger interventions by staff.


    The extreme I was referencing here was the action of forcefully advocating a position by moderating against anyone of a differing opinion.

    I do not personally believe that BLM is an extreme position, nor do I believe that it (should) be inherently political. Somehow it has become so, but I will fight and die on the hill that it is not.


    "Black lives matter" is an affirmation of the underlying political principle that all lives matter. That all lives matter is something virtually no one would dispute, so the fact that black lives are currently not being treated the same is an inconsistency with the principle, which entails some political change must occur to bring us back into consistency. I don't see the need to die on a hill for this one. Denying that it is political is somewhat counterproductive because it trivializes the severity of the issue. If you said "genocide is bad" is not political while a genocide was occurring, you'd be erasing the political reality that there really are people in the world who want to commit genocide and turning a blind eye to them is incredibly dangerous and irresponsible.


    The context was not clear - in part Hate Groups in general have no place here. The KKK, All Lives Matters, and White Lives Matters are not allowed. Thus, I am now confused as to your original post. Your point was "3. A balance which is inclusive to hate groups is toxic to the cohesion of the forum community". If you're talking about Hate Groups in general, this point is invalid, as we do not allow them. The only context that made sense is the current discussion of whether #BlueLivesMatters should be allowed on the site.

    If this association was in error on my part, I apologize.


    A person does not have to explicitly state that they're part of the KKK to be part of a hate group or use hate speech. They are frequently characterized by the use of dog whistles, which I consider bluelivesmatter to be.

    Denying that systemic racism exists against POC is also something I think is hate speech. It has occurred in this thread. And all that is required for people motivated by this hate is to drop inflammatory bombs in random threads for the damage to be done. There is nothing moderators can do directly about this behavior which would satisfy me. But members of the community have the ability to assure one another by coming together to oppose it. That's the thing that's missing from the current picture and you're severely underestimating the value and importance of this quality in making this an inclusive space. That's why I've called for equitable exception to be made for this activity.

    This... feels like it's getting into semantics. While I can see what you are arguing, I doubt that you do not see the point I was trying to make.


    I'm speaking from my academic background. I'm sure it probably does feel like mere semantics to you. But I can only say it's something that is of vital, critical importance to me.


    Yes, every community, every nation, every group of people will have laws and rules based on the morals it wishes to emphasize. However, there are some topics that are disagreed upon, ambiguous, or otherwise in contention. While each of us on the staff, and the owners, may have our personal opinions on these topics, the Site itself is not here to pass judgement on those. The site is not here as a platform to advocate for a cause in contention. Each of us that wishes to do so, does it on our own time, in our own locations.

    There is also the issue that the quote of mine you placed is in reference you your point 3: "3. A balance which is inclusive to hate groups is toxic to the cohesion of the forum community". Given the context of the preceding posts about the validity of BlueLives, and that Hate Groups in general are not allowed here, the association was the inference that your point was associating BlueLives as a Hate Group. Thus, the context of MY quote about passing moral judgement is that it is not this Site's duty or prerogative to make the judgement about whether or not a group qualifies as a Hate Group. We'll leave that to those better suited for it.


    Then I suppose my only recourse is to collect evidence. Very well. I still want to get back to some of your earlier requests as well as time allows.


    The debate forum was well intentioned, and started off well and well moderated. But it quickly went down a black hole. Towards the end of its existence, debates were not held in good faith, and there was a tendency to argue and make contrarian points just for shock and attention. There ended up being multiple "debates" which were nothing more than outright trolling, as well as rife trolling throughout what might be considered legitimate debates.

    And this doesn't even touch on the topics found in the NSFW Debate subforum (which I am personally confused why was ever a thing here).

    Looking at the retired forum, there are 11 threads that needed to be deleted in the first page alone, and another 9 on the second page. That's not healthy. There are also a significant amount of red text, and banned members in the responses.

    I am well aware that there were several mods that held the forum in fond memory, however there was solid reason to shut it down at the time. Perhaps it could return one day, but today is definitely not the time.


    I understand the difficulties involved here but I think it's worth the investment to make this a reality again. I'm sure you derive absolutely no personal enjoyment from having to continue to discuss this issue with me. Tell me your plan so that we can move on.
    Posted in: Staff Helpdesks
  • posted a message on [RETIRED] [Admin] bobthefunny's Strategic Chalkboard

    If discussions like this should happen, it needs a sub-forum for just that, so discussions that drift into this politics can be moved to that place and not distract users that dont want to have anything to do with it.

    As thats the main deal.

    If a Rumor Mill discussions is all about Magic cards and it drifts into politics, the entire thing has to be locked, people get moderated, warnings, time-outs and what not need to be thrown around ; while its probably easier to move such a discussion into a forum on its own.



    They could reinstate the Discussion forum. The site is probably not inclined to do so, since apparently it was retired because it required a heavy amount of work to moderate for no doubt obvious reasons. But I agree this is a workable solution.
    Posted in: Staff Helpdesks
  • posted a message on [RETIRED] [Admin] bobthefunny's Strategic Chalkboard
    Quote from Buffsam89 »
    The reason I said that you can’t talk politics in good faith is because it affects everyone differently, and you’ll always be in favor of policies and practices that benefit you(not personally, though technically). Are you really going to tell me you’d be in favor of policy that would negatively affect you? No, absolutely not. So, regardless of where you align on the political spectrum, you’re still looking out for numero uno when all is said and done. In almost every case, and it’s evident here, what people will be looking out for is their $$$. What is in their best interests. While it is true that not every policy has an impact on the dollars and cents, you most often aren’t getting those policy’s in isolation. There is give, and there is take. That’s why I can’t get behind the current divide in our country based on Liberal Vs. Republican. It’s deeper than that.


    There's a distinction to be made between personal motivations for supporting a policy (because it benefits you) and the underlying principles that commit a person to a policy. If you say you believe in universal liberation, for example, then you're being consistent with that principle if your support of liberation extends to groups you're not a part of. Most people would probably say they like the idea of universal liberation, you can test their consistency by issue. And it happens to be the case that solidarity makes for good praxis.

    So that means that sometimes you end up supporting positions which benefit you less than others potentially would, for the sake of values like equity. And in a way the same thing happens with other ideologies. For example, poor people can be libertarians even though libertarianism in practice disproportionately favors the benefit of wealthy interests. A typical libertarian would probably believe that it's actually beneficial to them as well, somewhat as an article of faith. Others would accept this cost as what is due to maintain the liberty of property rights. Two poor people could have a political argument even though their economic interests are the same.

    It doesn't necessarily have to be a zero-sum game. And if you consider the fact that your interests as an individual are inter-implicatory with the interests of humanity as a whole, identifying the principles which lie underneath personal motivations is precisely the process of good faith political discussion.

    Take me for instance. I was never in favor of Obama-care. As a manager in what would be considered a “small business” in terms of business practices and organizational makeup, it was a total net-negative on our operation and my staff. Were there positives? Certainly, but not for me and not for those close to me. So, why should I endorse a proposal like that? I know that the above is overly simplified but I think you get my point.


    Wanting to live in a society where people don't needlessly die from lack of healthcare might be a reason.

    Similarly, take the BLM movement. After the death of George Floyd, there was support from pretty much every group in the United States that something needed to change. It’s “systemic”, as I’m so often reminded. If a system is broken, you first need to identify the point of failure, and then proceed with the rebuild. A system as large as the police force in America isn’t something that is going to change over night. Hell, it can’t be changed in a year. It affects too many people to institute radical change. It requires people to Vote. Get involved. Become educated. But, it appears that many are unsatisfied with the speed at which the gears are turning. And destruction has followed. I can’t get behind that. I won’t. I’ll push for change, but I haven’t received any comfort from those asking for it that it just won’t be as bad, or worse than it already is, just for different people.

    Human nature dictates that, when push comes to shove, the vast majority are in it for ourselves.


    What's best for self-interest in the long run isn't a pure focus on the self. Psychopathy, for example, is considered a disorder because at the end of the day, psychopathic behaviors aren't functional. The fact that most people consider psychopathic behavior to be shocking is a sentimental rather than scientific reason for its categorization as a disorder. Not that there's anything wrong with sentiment. And there's nothing wrong with having self-interest, either. But that shouldn't be the only thing that determines a person. And we can also choose to create a world that is not "push comes to shove."

    Our current political system is designed to change very slowly. When everything in the world is happening faster than it did back during the writing of the Constitution, and the large, time-sensitive issues we're facing, it makes sense to be impatient with gridlock. Frankly, I think it would be insane to not feel impatience.

    When the point of the issue in a system is fundamental, the change required is radical. "Radical" from radix, meaning root, as in "to get to the root of the problem." Most people share your feelings that they don't want radical change. But issues like corruption are definitely fundamental to the system. People have been acting out now because they want to draw attention to and raise awareness of the call for radical change. But we certainly wouldn't be ready to push radical change through without popular support, and if we tried to things likely wouldn't be any better than they are now like you say. You're right that people need to learn more about various issues and be informed when it comes to determining the course of action. And I think the outcome of that education will be the recognition that just voting and participating with the political system as is will not and cannot work. But we're a long ways off from people accepting that, unfortunately.
    Posted in: Staff Helpdesks
  • posted a message on [RETIRED] [Admin] bobthefunny's Strategic Chalkboard
    Whether or not my behavior is problematic wouldn't excuse yours. But Kamino_Taka is correct that litigating over that issue doesn't accomplish anything. I'm here because I'm trying to solve a problem as I see it. Not everything I've said has been effective in doing so. But your position that good faith is impossible has got to be a non-starter.

    MtG characters are almost never meaningful anyway. Teferi has the advantage of being around for such a long time that the amount of lore associated with him fleshes him out more than just about any of the characters that are around today. A queen in a plane we might not even come back to is bound to be more of a flat character compared to that, and sometimes it's okay for there to be flat characters as long as your rounder ones are well developed. When you have a lot of flat characters and you make an effort to make them representative, having that as a baseline does help somewhat to move toward more meaningful representation. But we have to be clear about what's going on and ask for WotC to do better.

    I would fully agree that corporate approaches to representation aren't and can't be adequate. I have no love for executives in the first place, but inclusive hiring is still overall absolutely necessary.
    Posted in: Staff Helpdesks
  • posted a message on [RETIRED] [Admin] bobthefunny's Strategic Chalkboard
    You're right, it is a token. But you came into that discussion when the context was people complaining about Queen Linden being black for baldly racist reasons. Then, because you were being interpreted as also racist, you mentioned your black daughter. I find that to be problematic behavior and I also don't really get the reasons for your objections (isn't the point to stray from source material? It's a high fantasy setting, what historical inaccuracy?). You can give people representation without it interfering with fleshing out characters. The two things are not at odds. WotC doesn't flesh out their characters because their content is over-marketed and generic. Multiculturalism isn't the cause of that.

    Edit:
    So asking somebody to not look at everything politically is insinuating that you live in a bubble?


    I'm referring to when you said:
    There’s a large world out there just waiting to be explored, and tons of fascinating people that you’ll never have the pleasure of meeting if you expect to align with it all politically.


    I don't expect everyone to align with my politics. I'm an anarcho-communist, less than 1% of the population of the U.S. shares my views. Trust me, I'm accustomed to coming across people I disagree with, and most of the time there's not a problem. But having to establish that I deserve to be treated with human dignity is a pretty black-and-white issue for me.
    Posted in: Staff Helpdesks
  • posted a message on [RETIRED] [Admin] bobthefunny's Strategic Chalkboard
    Quote from Kamino_Taka »
    You previously talked about how you have a black daughter, using her as a human shield for yourself against any and all criticism.


    Now that without backup is a personal attack.
    I know people do that as I have some in my family who use me and my sis for that too (half african american/ half german). But that is a serious accusation. And in no way furthers the discussion.


    I'm referring to this post.

    BuffSam89, You can't really say I was making assumptions about you because we previously had an exchange which I remember. But you did make assumptions about me being in a bubble.
    Posted in: Staff Helpdesks
  • posted a message on [RETIRED] [Admin] bobthefunny's Strategic Chalkboard
    Quote from Buffsam89 »
    Yeah, everything after “privilege“ was white noise. You don’t know me, and you don’t know my story. Yet, that didn’t stop you from making wild assumptions. Therefore, proving my point.

    Consider this conversation over.


    Actually, I do know your story. You previously talked about how you have a black daughter, using her as a human shield for yourself against any and all criticism.
    Posted in: Staff Helpdesks
  • posted a message on [RETIRED] [Admin] bobthefunny's Strategic Chalkboard
    Quote from Buffsam89 »
    It’s cynical to believe that is hardly productive to have any sort of political discussion? Specifically on the Internet?

    I’d just ask that you step outside and leave the political lens at home. There’s a large world out there just waiting to be explored, and tons of fascinating people that you’ll never have the pleasure of meeting if you expect to align with it all politically.

    It’s never been this bad before, and I will lay the blame at the feet of the pandemic. There’s not a ton going on, and aligning yourself with a political party is a sure-fire way to feel included in these times of isolation. Its very sad, really.


    Yes, that is cynical. Again, the internet is a place where people act differently than they do in other contexts, but that doesn't mean political discussion can't ever be productive. That notion is a little hyperbolic, frankly.

    Look, the fact that you think it's even possible to leave the political lens at home is due to your privilege, full stop. I can't leave the political lens at home, as a queer person, when TheOnlyOne[+string of numbers] is here saying we shouldn't even have Magic cards depicting queer characters because it's somehow inappropriate. I came out as queer at age 13, incidentally, the idea that it's inappropriate for certain age groups is pretty curious and bigoted, but whatever. The politics are here; they've already been here and I am merely replying to them. It's other people who are injecting politics into the discussion, and once it's there, I'm supposed to ignore it? These politics may be invisible to you because you aren't adversely affected by them. And if it doesn't personally affect you, you project that same feeling onto everyone. This environment is not welcoming to me or to my community, and it's not welcoming to a great many other communities as well. There's lots of different people out in the world who are worth interacting with; Nazis aren't among them. Bob wants it to be uncomplicated, well it's not complicated. Nazis are bad. It's ridiculous it even needs to be said. And I'm not even saying "ban the Nazis." Just let the community make it clear that we disagree with them. That's all.

    It is the height of presumption to tell me to get out of my "bubble" as though I'm the one who's in a bubble here. I know lots of people with different political views; many different views have been expressed here. I don't get to have a bubble, because I live in your world. There is no bubble for me even here. Having a bubble honestly sounds like a pretty nice luxury to me.
    Posted in: Staff Helpdesks
  • posted a message on [RETIRED] [Admin] bobthefunny's Strategic Chalkboard
    Quote from Buffsam89 »

    With that out of the way, I wanted to address this take in that “Everything is political”. I honestly hear this take a lot, primarily on message boards or when a certain aspect of life doesn’t quite line up with your expectations. However, it couldn’t be further from the truth. You can inject politics into any discussion. It’s very easy, incredibly low effort, and sometimes signals ignorance on a particular subject, or at the very best an unnecessary reason to escalate the conversation beyond what it truly is.


    There's a huge qualitative difference between injecting an (explicit) political discussion into a topic which is not immediately political in itself and exposing the implicitly political nature of a position which pretends to be apolitical.

    Usually, people who claim that their positions aren't truly political are people who are ignorant about logical entailments.

    Not a single political discussion is ever carried out in good faith, ever.


    That's a pretty cynical and destructive claim. And if it were true, human civilization wouldn't exist.

    Bad faith political discussion is certainly common, because it works at what it tries to accomplish (eristics). But it would be less effective rhetorically if the general populace could identify and name it, a skill which can hardly be developed if political discussion doesn't occur at all.

    ***

    I'd like to touch again on the claim that the site isn't here to make moral judgments. This is false on its face, because the forum has rules of conduct in the first place which are based in moral judgment. Bob, you earlier introduced the term "moral" into the discussion and I was appreciative of you doing so because its frequently the case that people have a dismissive attitude about whatever they term "moral" due to its subjective connotations. If we were so inclined, we could engage in a discussion which in every explicit sense was only descriptive and leave its normative character as subtextual, but I don't think that would be a very sincere, clear, or constructive approach. Every decision we make in life entails a moral judgment; we could take no action otherwise. You can't avoid making moral judgments, just as you can't avoid being political, and maturity involves acknowledging this.
    Posted in: Staff Helpdesks
  • posted a message on [RETIRED] [Admin] bobthefunny's Strategic Chalkboard
    Quote from bobthefunny »


    1. This seems to me to be a fallacy. If a policy against political posts is itself political, then the option is either to allow politics, or still be political? Everything is political? I find it irresponsible to believe that mature individuals are entirely incapable of having a conversation of Magic, or anything else, without bringing up politics every 15 seconds. Somehow, I manage to hold many such conversations each day.


    The policy is political while presenting itself as not political. It has political results, and is more acceptable to only one side of political issues. For example, TheOnlyOne652089 was quick to accept that the "solution" is to have no discussion of politics whatsoever because this solution clearly suits his purposes. Everything is political, though in more or less obvious ways. "Politics" covers everything that has to do with human life, with humans as social creatures. That's what the word means and it has implications on everything we might talk about. It's important to be honest about it. So yes, if you're going to be political either way, I think a good maxim would be to lean toward allowing discussion. This way, you have people happy with their ability to express themselves and so on, meaning the results are effective for maintaining the health of the community which is your charge as the staff here.

    At no point have I suggested that we should bring up politics "every 15 seconds." In fact, the issue I have been pointing out is the trend of political posts hating on groups being posted in threads for causes as minimal as a card depicting a black person. People have a natural desire to want to respond to such content which you have disallowed. But the reverse doesn't happen (people randomly posting leftist or centrist political takes out of the blue), because the nature of politics differs by ideology and this leads to different behavior. I would be perfectly happy to discuss only Magic cards in their direct application as game components if that was the only sort of discussion a particular card inspired.

    2. So the options again are either to enforce bias, or to be biased anyways? Again, I disagree. Censoring to one extreme or another can only be harmful to all involved. This is a site that exists to discuss Magic. This should be feasible without overcomplication.


    To the contrary, it's entirely possible to not be biased in the matter. The non-biased perspective would acknowledge that one view is extreme and the other is not. The non-extreme (BLM) would only be possible to consider as extreme in the biased perspective that compares and defines it in relation to the extreme one.

    3. The site is not here to pass moral judgment. You know what else would be detrimental to a community? Excising anyone with a differing viewpoint than your own.

    While you may be judging the entire group to be a hate group, the rest of the collective US community, the commercial interest, and the internet do not currently agree with your assessment. If a change occurs, we will adapt to it. Until then, every other commercial venture is willing to accept it, so will we.


    The idea that excising people with different viewpoints than mine would be harmful to the community... is a moral judgment. Politics, after all, is a subset of moral theory. However, I haven't advocated for the excising of people just because their views differ from mine. Earlier in this thread, I engaged in polemics against the political positions you were kind enough to state in order to demonstrate that we're both partisan. I don't think you should be excised just because I disagree with you, because you haven't advocated for things that are inherently dehumanizing. I can recognize that you in good faith believe your views are what's best for a variety of people (a moral judgment).

    I take it you're referring to bluelivesmatter here. I'm speaking more generally about hate groups, and it seems to me no coincidence that those same hate groups also are favorable towards bluelivesmatter. The lovely thing about reason is that we can draw inferences about things that lead us to opposite conclusions of popular opinion.

    4. And what overzealous and authoritarian approach are you referring to here?
    • A simple request to keep discussion to the topics that this forum was made for?
    • Or that if people fail to follow the rules of the community, they are asked to leave?
    Is it really that hard to understand "Please follow the rules, don't be a jerk, or we will ask you to not be here?"


    Intervening in discussions just because they're "off topic" is very likely to be excessive.

    5. You know what else would affect revenue? Becoming a Magic site that doesn't discuss Magic.

    If a person arrives at this site from google, wanting to look up an interaction, or discuss some new cards - but instead they see a bunch of people yelling at each other about entirely unrelated things? Well suddenly that makes this seem like a terrible site to come to for the answers to Magic related questions.


    I don't see how this is the necessary outcome. I suspect that politics is something that will rarely come up because most people here are primarily interested in discussing Magic and that's not going to change.

    I joined this site to discuss Magic. I joined it to discuss Commander. I joined the moderator team to help improve the goals of facilitating that kind of discussion. For the last THREE MONTHS, 95% of my interaction and duties on this site have been entirely non-magic related. I'm frankly getting sick and tired of this. Everywhere else, I seem to be able to find people who are able to hold a conversation on a topic without needing to proselytize. Conversations in which if a person says "Hey, I don't want to hold this discussion here, can we let it drop," the other person respects it. Or even following simple rules and requests for use of a facility or services. When the people who collect the garbage in my neighborhood arrive in the early morning with their trucks, no one seems to need to quiz them about their political allegiance.

    Everyone saying that we need to discuss non-magic things here... No. We. Don't. There are plenty of places where you can share your political views. There are plenty of places where it's appropriate to do so. Want to share them? Write an opinion piece to your local paper. Write to your congressman. Go to a protest. Go to a townhall. GO. VOTE. Arguing with random people on the internet, on a site which has nothing to do about it is a waste of everyone's time.

    I'm willing to bet that you don't go to a Walmart, or a Target, or even a McDonald's to shout at people about your views on this. There is nothing that makes this place any more appropriate than those, expect that on here you can do so from the comfort of your own home and you don't have to actually look anyone in the eyes when you do it. Don't do it. We don't want it here. Grow up. Take it to where it matters.

    This site is about Magic. If you want to talk about something Not Magic - you've come to the wrong place.


    Never mind that Magic itself is expressly political, apparently provoking political responses with choices as simple as depicting black people in card art. The controversies here are over something really basic, which essentially distills to the question of whether humanity is universal or not. Such a basic controversy can't go unresolved.

    I've said before, this is a forum. It's a place where people go to discuss Magic and discuss generally. If you want a forum with a bunch of threads where the only comment is "GILBIC /thread," congratulations, you've created a forum in which discussion is actually dead.
    Posted in: Staff Helpdesks
  • posted a message on [RETIRED] [Admin] bobthefunny's Strategic Chalkboard
    There is no need for further discussion of the issues brought up in this thread. The points have been made. However, with respect to the points I've raised, I have not seen them addressed to my satisfaction or really to the satisfaction of any reasonable standard. From my point of view, the staff has only reiterated their original positions and ignored my concerns.

    Please address:
    1. The issue that a policy against political posts is itself political
    2. A methodology which naively produces balance for its own sake actually produces bias. 'Overbalancing' by representing views that have no business being represented is bias
    3. A balance which is inclusive to hate groups is toxic to the cohesion of the forum community
    4. Overzealous and authoritarian approaches to moderation will stifle engagement in the forum community
    5. 4 & 5 will have the long term effect of diminishing revenue
    Posted in: Staff Helpdesks
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