Recovered from the Wayback Machine.
The New York Times came out with an article on the recent ‘lack of civility’ events. Why is it that no matter what, David Weinberger and Robert Scoble end up in these?
Regardless, this was one of the more thoughtful and accurate articles, focusing more on the whole civility movement rather than issues related directly to any one person. The title was link bait, but then, the same could be said of this post and probably most other posts related to recent events.
I must say, though, that I have rarely had problems in my comments, and I’ve written quite strongly on topics. Additionally, I’ve seen as many vicious comments in men’s weblogs, as I’ve seen in women’s. I think the perceived ‘threat to all women’ supposedly inherent in weblogging has been exaggerated–not to our benefit, either.
According to the article, Tim O’Reilly and Jimmy Wales, of Wikipedia fame, have joined forces to bring about this newer, gentler atmosphere. Based on past actions of Mr. Wales, I wouldn’t bet on this necessarily having a positive effect.
My opinion of all of this was stated previously, and I won’t repeat it–not the least of which I write for Tim O’Reilly’s book company, and don’t want to tweak the hand, overmuch, that feeds me. However, I will repeat what I wrote in the comments to Tim’s post discussing these new initiatives:
You created badges.
You actually created badges.
I just can’t believe you created badges.
Yes, they actually created badges.
As for the so-called code of behavior, the only one I’ll comment on here is the following:
4. When we believe someone is unfairly attacking another, we take action.
When someone who is publishing comments or blog postings that are offensive, we’ll tell them so (privately, if possible–see above) and ask them to publicly make amends.
If those published comments could be construed as a threat, and the perpetrator doesn’t withdraw them and apologize, we will cooperate with law enforcement to protect the target of the threat.
I’ll say this once: if any of you ever once consider privately contacting me, to tell me that what I have written is ‘offensive’ or that I should apologize to another person, run, run fast, away from my place, and don’t ever come back.
Yes, I am serious. No, I’m not joking. I do not write for children, here. I write for adults. If what I write offends, the person offended can tell me so to my face. If I feel they’re right, I’ll apologize. If not, I won’t. If you don’t like what I write, tell me in my comments or in your weblogs. Again, I may agree and apologize. Or, I may not, and won’t.
But I will not have some interfering busybody playing nursemaid for another in my space.
In addition, if a post or comment is serious enough for the police, it’s too serious to be retracted with an apology. The police have better things to do than babysit us.
Bonus link: Happy Tutor’s Tips for Satirists.