Clarify MetaBrainz Code of Conduct

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The MetaBrainz Code of Conduct currently does not enumerate unacceptable behaviors. The only clause that touches on issues of discrimination is the very vague rule 4:

MetaBrainz projects have global communities. Be mindful and respectful of different languages, habits and cultures.

I would ask that the Code of Conduct be updated to include an explicit (although non-exhaustive) list of unacceptable behaviors (such as racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, etc.) alongside these general clauses. Naming such behaviors is beneficial because it removes potential for discriminatory behavior being excused by claiming that actions that aim to address discrimination are in fact discriminatory against the original perpetrators, and also because it signals more clearly the good intentions of the project to potential targets of such discrimination.

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Obviously the Code of Conduct is not clear enough to stop you from being disrespectful. Or you disregard it on purpose, in which case you should just say so. I think an apology is in order.

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Yeah, “be respectful” clearly isn’t enough if you think “SJW” is even remotely that.

“Be respectful” doesn’t mean squat if nobody is going to set boundaries for what is and isn’t respectful. Otherwise, it’s isn’t so much a hole in the fence as it is the complete absence of it.

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Has something caused this post to be written?

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Mainly this:

https://community.metabrainz.org/t/handling-name-of-transgender-artist/538657/15

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Also want to add, because it’s been playing on my mind a bit, but in more cases than none, there’s most certainly a need to be even more specific.

It’s one thing up say “Don’t be transphobic” but it’s also another to recognise the efforts and terminology that gets employed in an attempt to make that transphobia appear more like a legitimate concern to the average person, and thus worming their way around existing rules.

Terms like “gender ideology”, for example, which implies that people who support the rights of trans people are part of an effective religion or cult out to subjugate the masses, and the term serves to downplay the needs of trans folk by making them sound irrational.

These tactics aren’t specific to trans folk either, though, because you have also have stuff like antisemitic “follow the money” rants and such.

[EDIT] See also, the absolutely racist appropriation of “woke” to turn it into a pejorative.

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Please note that the more you go into specifics of what is or isn’t appropriate, the easier it becomes to game that by being nasty in another way (like using a different insult). Before you know it you’re wasting time and energy playing whack a mole with trolls, and that is exactly what they want.

Also, the more you add to a code of conduct, the bigger it gets and the less likely it is to be read.

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An unfortunate truth, yeah. I guess that would be where “includes, but is not limited to” could come into play. :thinking:

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As long as we’re discussing the Code of Conduct, I’d like to suggest that this wording

be improved. It caught my eye in this thread. “Remaining neutral” implies to me that one isn’t taking a position on an issue, not that one is taking a strong position but advocating it respectfully.

Could we substitute, say, “civil” for “neutral”?

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Neutral sounds boring. :face_with_hand_over_mouth::wink:

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Maybe - but “civil” seems to have been appropriated by some groups as well. Yay terminology.

Plus, here I do think “neutral” is exactly what is intended - i.e. not taking sides in a flame war. Not being neutral in any sort of civil discussion.

@Freso @reosarevok or another person of authority: I would really expect a statement on this, the lack of clarity does not bode well for the moderation climate in this community.

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I’m sure you won’t like it, but allow me to respond.
Speaking about ‘clarity’.

In your OP it says:
“(such as racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, etc.)”

Do you really believe it is factually possible for a moderator to decide and determine that a poster is what you would call ‘racist’, ‘homophobic’ or ‘transphobic’?
And do you have examples of such posts that were not flagged or dealt with?
(and I am not talking about posts that challenged a related matter in a perhaps confronting way)

Do you not trust the moderators to be intelligent, educated and well-informed people that understand the concept of ‘decent’ and ‘respectful’ in general, and that they have been applying that in a manner that has been satisfying to the majority of the community?
(I didn’t always agree myself, but I am not complaining)

If you believe a forum member wrote something that was disrespectful to a person (and not to an idea!!!), you already have the force to get his post hidden. (which is a silly, lazy, and often falsely used mechanism in my book to be honest)

But the post will get reported, and a moderator will review it and decide (probably after some deliberation with others) what to do.

To be honest, I find it a bit inappropriate and disrespectful to the moderators that you suggest that they would need a handbook with a list of specified ‘phobias’ or mental states or motives to be able to decide if a post is off-topic or disrespectful to another person, and that you seem to demand them writing up some official position on the specific words and terminology that you are bringing up.

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You keep demonstrating exactly why this is needed.

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I am pretty sure there is no racism, phobia, cursing words, etc. in my post.
So other than that, what is it in this specific post of mine that you abhor, and that you are able to specify and write a clear and specific regulation for that the moderators can use to take action against, that they can not do or decide on already?

A good answer to this on-topic question could help your cause here…

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You are equivocating about taking literally the smallest possible symbolic action to show support for trans people, leaving me no choice to consider you a transphobe. I will now mute you and no longer read your replies until I get an official word on this.

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Wow.
Wrong again.
I am pro respect for any human being.
Not only in words, also in action.

But I won’t let you or anybody else narrow ‘respect’ down to some specific group that you or somebody else decides on, or believes that he is speaking for.

I may have less respect for some ideas or ideologies though.
Absolutely, and not ashamed about it.
But if you are honest you would agree that goes for you too.
Only you (and another member) keep trying to make it a personal and hateful thing on this forum.

But I sincerely wish you the best and hope that you have a good life.

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