-8

I made a valid comment which another user deleted. So I repeated the comment (not verbatim) and in that user (who is also a moderator) trolled my post. Can another moderator intervene?

My valid comment was made to an answer provided for this post:

In Romans 8:19, what is the meaning of κτίσεως?

In retaliation, the moderator made this inappropriate response to my answer:

"This post is pretty classic eisegesis starting out with a belief or observation about the world and the nature of humanity and then massaging the text into supporting that view. An exegetical reading of the same texts would show the author to be in disagreement with your premise."

This is what I've come to expect from this particular moderator. Is there a non-croney-minded moderator that can intervene both in having the moderator post a retraction/apology for his retaliatory dishonest comment and to edit out the willful disinformation posted in the answer? Please see his/her own footnote regarding the first paragraph.

It is one thing to have a difference of opinion about interpretations but quite another to knowingly misrepresent the very lexicons you cite and then to have the moderator support and establish the lie. I say "knowingly" because:

  • their own footnote to the their own lexicon reproves them for their dishonesty
  • I pointed it out
  • I offered an appropriate edit that was rebuffed

The moderator undid my edit, defended the misinformation and deleted my comments.

If I find no satisfaction in this situation I will kick the dust off my shoes and move on and leave you all to your institutionalized self-delusion.

As it is, I'm not permitted to ask any questions because of trolls down voting legitimate questions. For an example, see this one:

In John 3:16 in what way did God δίδωμι ("give") his only begotten son?

2
  • Thank you elika. I'll delete this post because having been properly dealt with it need not remain. – Ruminator Dec 12 '17 at 16:22
  • It is still a useful question, and can be helpful for others. This actually happens a lot. Especially knowing about comment flags, etc. Please don't delete. – elika kohen Dec 12 '17 at 17:05
7

I don't know if you've ever hear of Occam's Razor, but I'd like to propose that you've made quite a number of assumptions about my motivations that are not justified by the paper trail. Some of the paper trail is public (edit histories, remaining comments). Other bits of it are now moderator only (deleted comments), but there are two other moderators on this site as well as Stack Exchange staff that are free to review the cases and decide if I made decent judgment calls or not.

Also since you've called me out publicly I'm going to post some here so the community can better judge whether I'm moderating this site fairly or not. Otherwise it's your word (saying I'm abusing moderator privileges) vs. mine (saying I'm only enforcing community norms).

My valid comment was made to they answer provided by user33515 [...]

Asserting that your comment was "valid" does not make it so. I deleted your comment(s) on that post in response to community users flagging the dispute you'd gotten into with that user.

  1. You commented to complain about the perceived issue in the post.

  2. The OP disagreed with you and tried to explain themselves.

  3. You made an edit that substantively changed the content of the answer to something the OP did not want to say.1

  4. They reverted the edit.

  5. You attacked them personally in the comment section including a comment:

    What kind of person posts something that is patently false [...] What kind of person?? What is wrong with you?? And of course I can't count on the moderators. Oh well, this site can only rise to mediocrity in such a state of affairs. – Ruminator Dec 8 at 17:24

    Another comment in the same thread called on the moderators2 to chastise the user for posting false information.

    It addition to deleting the entire string of comments in which you included that ad hominem attack I commented explaining how that was not an acceptable use of comments.

In retaliation Caleb made this inappropriate response to my answer:

My comment on your post was not in retaliation for anything. It was several days later and my attention was only drawn to the post because it was edited and thus hit the home page again. I read and reviewed it as a site user not as a moderator and commented based on the content, not your personage.

Is there a non-croney-minded moderator that can intervene both in having Caleb post a retraction/apology for his retaliatory dishonest comment and to edit out the willful disinformation by user33515?

As I said above other moderators (and the community) are free to review this, but I see two problems here.

  1. My comment was neither retaliatory nor dishonest. It had no connection to the other users post. You only have my word for this, but I didn't even realize that it was the same question where the other answer altercation took place until reading this meta post. I did not review all the answers, I only read and reviewed the one that hit the home page a couple days later and reviewed it on it's own merits.

    You may disagree with my assessment of the hermeneutical method in the post, but I commented based on my observation that the basic flow of the argument went from an established belief about the nature of humanity back to the text to find any tidbits that could support that view. You may disagree with me, but that is my honest assessment of the content of that post.

  2. Moderators do not intervene on the content of posts as far as their hermeneutical right or wrongness. There are a number of content guidelines that moderators (and the community) are enabled to enforce, but "willful disinformation" about the interpretation of a lexicon entry is not one of those things. The quality of your interpretive process, the premises or conclusions of posts is simply not something we intervene as moderators to correct. We might have our opinions about those things but for those issues we use the usual site tools: voting and commenting. Note I did not delete your post (a moderator action) for employing what I consider to be a poor hermeneutic, I only voted and commented on it (what any user on this site can and should do).

It is one thing to have a difference of opinion about interpretations but quite another to knowingly misrepresent the very lexicons you cite and then to have the moderator support and establish the lie.

Again, just because you think a post is wrong does not mean that's something for a moderator to intervene on. A moderator would intervene if, say, the user was using abusive language or was off on a rabbit trail sermonizing about a topic not related to interpreting the passage in question, but we don't moderate based on the right or wrongness of a post.

That's what the voting system is for. Knowledgeable members of the community are supposed to read and review posts for their accuracy and vote on them according to whether they find them useful and accurate or not. In that sense you and I have the same amount of voice on this site. In fact there are many people on this site with more knowledge in this field than I (I don't have more than a smattering of either Greek or Hebrew). I'm not a moderator because of my subject area expertise (there would be better qualified candidates).

[...] I offered an appropriate edit that was rebuffed Caleb undid my edit, defended the misinformation and deleted my comments.

Not intervening to correct misinformation is not the same as moderator approval. There is lots of content on this site I consider to be wrong, but I use the correct tools for that: I downvote and comment to note what the perceived error is. I'm not defending the content of that post, I'm only defending the author's right to post their own voice. I rolled back your edit because it was not your place to change the content of the answer to be something the author disagreed with, and I deleted your comments because the included ad hominem attacks on the user were inappropriate.

As it is, I'm not permitted to ask any questions because of trolls down voting legitimate questions.

This is factually incorrect. You are not currently blocked from asking questions.

You were blocked automatically by the system for a week or so in November because of a series of posts all of which had negative scores. This is a standardized measure to slow down users who post a series of things that are poorly received by the community and don't make the effort to go back and fix them. It is also time based and automatically relaxed when some of your posts got improved and got a few upvotes.

Due to the long chain of downvoted (and many deleted) questions on your account, you will very easily hit that limit again. I don't actually know the exact parameters (that's SE programming across all sites, not just this one and not something moderators can fiddle with) but I suspect you're still toeing the line and a few dud questions would trigger the restriction again. Maybe try working with community guidelines instead of fighting them.

Since you brought up one question that has been particularly poorly received, allow me to suggest your own dogmatic inclusion of a massive lexicon entry is part of the problem there. I also thing the question is just poorly thought out in that it's about something pedantic that doesn't really require much extra explanation, but I'm sure it doesn't help that you have included a massive citation of content that is probably at least 95% irrelevant and by your own admission not interesting. You could just say you reviewed the lexicon and nothing caught your eye as being helpful to this context without making us scroll through the entries ourselves.

We went over this when you were trying to edit this content into other people's questions. On your own question it's your prerogative, but I think it detracts from the clarity of the question rather than adding to it. If there was something relevant in that entry an answer could cite the relevant portion. If your question was actually about something in the entry, that bit of the entry would suffice. But citing the on entire lexicon entry just doesn't help frame a question.

1 Making substantial edits is fine as long as it's done in cooperation with other contributors. You've made several good edits lately that improved the quality of posts, but you've also made several that either went contrary to the author's intentions or neutered the posts of their context. I've been alerted to the latter issue through community flags and stepped in and commented on these to explain the issue.

2 Incidentally comments should never be used to call on moderators, the site's flag functions should be used to that end. If there is a problem with a user's behavior flag it for a moderator to deal with rather than chastising the user or aggravating the situation by commenting. Flag it and step away.

35
  • I believe you are being disingenuous and since you are both the plaintiff and the judge I'm out of here. – Ruminator Dec 12 '17 at 15:10
  • 1
    @Ruminator You can not believe me all you like, but this post is an honest representation of what I observed and my decision making process of a moderator. One point (accordingly noted) you cannot verify, but the rest is pretty much an open record that the community and other moderators may review. The SE model of moderation is not a courtroom model but I put forward this explanation in answer to your charges by way of letting the community judge whether I've taken the appropriate steps in response to this case. – Caleb Dec 12 '17 at 15:24
  • StackExchange is not a flame-wall. Please remove these comments. Please just address the actual site mechanic, and how users could / should respond, regardless of this case. That is still important to know. It is unnecessary to use actual user names to address this - please remove them. I flagged this as "not an answer" - because it focuses on responding to specific personal allegations, rather than focusing on site mechanics, and what users should actually do in these situations. – elika kohen Dec 12 '17 at 16:37
  • 4
    @Ruminator - "...allow me to suggest your own dogmatic inclusion of a massive lexicon entry is part of the problem there." - I know this is feedback that I have also given you previously. In that case, it was your own post, and you wanted it reverted (So I did despite the fact it really undermined the post) but doing it to another person's post is just not acceptable. I also know that you had it explained previously that your temporary ban was a result of the community flagging and downvoting your content when you were using your old WoundedEgo account that you deleted when you ragequit. – James Shewey Dec 12 '17 at 17:39
  • 3
    This is not something done by a single moderator or even a group of moderators, but by the whole community here. The common denominator here is not that everyone else has a problem. It's that your usage of the site often does not reflect adherence to community standards of conduct (and that's before even getting to your hermetical and doctrinal issues that result in frequent downvotes.) – James Shewey Dec 12 '17 at 17:41
  • 3
    @elikakohen - Might I suggest that the problem is not the answer, but the question itself? If Ruminator wants to make a public spectacle and accuse moderators in public, I believe the response should also be public. – James Shewey Dec 12 '17 at 17:43
  • @JamesShewey I had the entry such that it only appeared as a few lines but someone else took it upon themselves to edit my post in the unformatted form it now assumes. I let it go to show myself agreeable. However, downvoting the inclusion of a comprehensive lexicon entry on a post discussing the nuance of the author's intended meaning of a word is not proper cause for a down vote. – Ruminator Dec 12 '17 at 17:47
  • In fact, a pet peeve of mine is the standard tendency on this site for people to discuss the "meaning" of words without providing a lexicon entry and upvoting musings based on thin air, etc. But I'll reformat the question as I intended it in the first place. One is unhappy I include the lexicon entry, one is unhappy that it was formatted. Lol. – Ruminator Dec 12 '17 at 17:47
  • Including the relevant parts of the lexicon entry ( a few lines at best) are fine. Including the entire page(s) of the lexicon entry is not. – James Shewey Dec 12 '17 at 17:49
  • @JamesShewey You wrote "It's that your usage of the site often does not reflect adherence to community standards of conduct (and that's before even getting to your hermetical and doctrinal issues that result in frequent downvotes.) " Please don't cast aspersions. If you have concern about a particular post then address that. Your "often" comment is simply malicious gossip. Cut it out. – Ruminator Dec 12 '17 at 17:58
  • 4
    @Ruminator: It is not neither gossip nor speculative. It is reflected in site metrics by the fact that your comments are flagged as offensive on an above-average basis and that your accounts have received temporary bans on more than one occasion. These cooldown bans are done for interpersonal reasons not on the basis of "validity" of content (and are generally done automatically based on an algorithm). So when community standards of conduct are not adhered to is when these occur. – James Shewey Dec 12 '17 at 18:11
  • @JamesShewey Did you down vote my question about John 3:16/"gave"? Because it included the lexicon entry? Did you edit it to remove the formatting? Your suggestion that the 5 down votes for that post were warranted because it contained the lexicon entry demonstrates that one can easily get on the wrong side of this site for doing a good thing. It is "objective" but the metric takes very little into account. That is a good post and the lack of formatting was done by another. It is a good example of the irrationality of it all. – Ruminator Dec 12 '17 at 18:21
  • 2
    @elikakohen - I haven't seen anything here that is vindictive or retalitory - even if it may be "dirty laundry" so to speak. Ruminator made a choice by posting here, in a public forum instead of messaging the person directly or creating a private chat room. Were anything here retaliatory or vindictive, it too would be subject to moderation. The alternative would be simply no response, which would be untenable, or to delete the post and message the user directly, which in this case would feed into the narrative of the OP. – James Shewey Dec 12 '17 at 19:21
  • 1
    @Ruminator: You may edit to fix typos and any errors an OP appreciates having fixed. We will not force them to represent (or misrepresent) their interpretive process in any particular way. If they are wrong and insist in engaging in poor hermeneutical practice then downvoting and commenting are all you can or any of us will do. Them are the apples; take 'em or leave 'em. More than enough words have been spilt explaining this to you. It's time to move on. – Caleb Dec 13 '17 at 18:44
  • 3
    @Ruminator One does not "admit" to things one wasn't doing — as I said it only came to my attention later that it was even the same question. You give me more credit for following all the goings on here than I deserve. But as long as we're allowing informal falacies to stand let me preempt the next one and say that I don't beat my wife either. Besides, if I were to troll you I would try to make it much more entertaining for the average bystander, like perhaps by linking Monty Python clips. – Caleb Dec 13 '17 at 19:01
-3

1. Question Restatement:

"I made a valid comment which Caleb deleted. So I repeated the comment (not verbatim) and in response Caleb trolled my post. Can another moderator intervene?"

Setting aside everything else - and in typical court-room fashion - I just want to address one non-disputed claim:

"This post is pretty classic eisegesis starting out with a belief or observation about the world and the nature of humanity and then massaging the text into supporting that view. An exegetical reading of the same texts would show the author to be in disagreement with your premise."

It is credible that this "eisagesis vs. exegesis" really is at the heart of the contention that followed.


2. Things we can all work on:

  1. In the future, rely on comment flagging more often.
  2. Be comfortable deleting discussion / argument comments.
  3. Get in the habit of routinely deleting comments that didn't directly contribute to the content in the question.
  4. Let valid objections rest/remain, (like factual objections, logically valid), but flag contentious comments that are not constructive. I personally disagree with creating entirely different answers just to point out objections / errors.

There is always room for patience when you believe people are wrong. But more importantly, there is room for /us/ to be patient with ourselves in how we respond.

"Wisdom" is not always "right" in the sense of "just" ... (for example, it injects life where there is wrong). As far as I know, neither Judaism or Christianity required 100% doctrinal inerrancy for salvation.

I even upvote answers that I personally think are wrong - if they are valid, (when the argument is well-formed). I feel that it is important, and constructive, to hear "opposing points of view" and to see the objections pointed out - separately, rather than having an opposing view silenced. Don't get me wrong - I often point out factual errors in answers, even while upvoting - but I don't presume to reverse the intent of the answer.


3. Comments:

Setting aside absolutely everything else - I have had pretty constructive interactions with both people, never really encountering either to be that "trol-ly". But - this particular issue has not just affected these users in the past - but many, many others.

Yeah, the tone of "classic" could seem a little insulting, but its likely it was meant in the sense of "traditional".

My Definition, Trolling: Intentional provocation in order to A.) start contention, or B.) to minimalize or dismiss an opposing view.

The actual troll part here really is the "superiority of exegesis over eisagesis" argument, (like opponents to Systematic theology), that has divided this community between: academics and pragmatists; and literalists (sola scriptura) vs. inspirationalists (depending on insight from the Holy Spirit, and including traditionalists).

Visitors and users might value each hermeneutic method differently - but they still are valid in hermeneutics.

In the end, those that observe these Scriptures must rely on eisagesis - because that is what is commanded by those Scriptures. But, those that study Scripture must do so thoroughly and accurately - also as exemplified in Scripture.

These are not mutually exclusive points of view - and continuing to contend over this really, really, is trolling.

I honestly believe that the worst form of trolling on this site is down voting, voting to close, etc., - without constructive comments.

3
  • If my answer was eisegesis then we need to rewrite the dictionary. If the answer upon which I commented is not eisegesis then we need to rewrite the dictionary. If the accusation that my answer was eisegetical was not trolling then likewise we need to rewrite the dictionary. And if the 5 downvotes on my John 3:16/"gave" question are not trolling then we need to rewrite the dictionary. Is there really no moderator (or even "too much lexicon" concerned netizen) here that can't see that? – Ruminator Dec 13 '17 at 15:15
  • The moderator had no criticism for the answer that was intentionally appealing to the authority of the lexicon while rebuffing its assertions, my pointing out the error and my offered correction. Not a word. Only an intervention on its behalf. But he got involved in my innocent post and fabricated a lie about it. And I bring the situation here and not one person - neither an official or a layman - will assess the situation honestly and decisively. I weep for my generation. – Ruminator Dec 13 '17 at 15:25
  • 1
    @Ruminator I deliberately left my opinion of that answer out of the mix because that isn't a factor in my moderation one way or the other. I reviewed the altercation between you and the OP and acted on that before I did my own review of the content. And you really are ungrateful. First to Webster and his kin. Then for having three of your critical comments left stand when I locked the comment section. If I thought the hermeneutics were impeccable I probably would have just cleared the whole thing, heaven knows there have been enough flags on your abrasive tone I would have been justified. – Caleb Dec 13 '17 at 19:10

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .