by Max Barry

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by The Republic of DUMPSTERZ. . 1,204 reads.

Copy of Kyrusia‘s “To the NationStates' Staff...” Speech.

This is a copy of Kyrusia‘s “To the NationStates' Staff...” Speech. It was posted on the moderation forum on May 29, 2023. This was not made by me. I don’t not necessarily agree or disagree with the points brought up in this augment.

(“Inappropriate Words” Have Been Censored.)

To the NationStates' Staff...
Post by Kyrusia » Mon May 29, 2023

At one point in my tenure, I told the NationStates' Moderation/Administration Team something to the effect of “I don't need to be your friend to work with you and do my job”; well, I don't need to be your friend to know when you're not doing yours, either.

Being critical, even exceedingly critical (ask the Mentors; I was to them before joining), does not warrant the label of “malcontent” unless that player reaches the point where they are willing to habitually break the rules in a futile effort (which it is) to try and get their message across. While I won't pretend to know exactly what is being discussed in the Modlair at this point in time, considering how freely that term has been thrown around historically, I would not be surprised if it were being distributed liberally. Especially not considering the degree of bad faith that the proverbial mouthpiece (either acknowledged as such or due to sheer force of will, something I'm well aware works within M/A) of the Team has been expressing during this… Well, sh*tfest of a blow-up.

And before you continue reading, yes, I'm well aware even speaking on this board in a context beyond congratulating the latest in staff appointments also will result in me being labeled one, as well as “bitter ex-staff.” Considering the conduct displayed by portions of the team over the past month, I'm not going to take either of those as a personal insult, more of a badge of honor, all things considered.

It is one thing to lock-down a thread, even an appeal, when it has devolved into back and forth, tit-for-tat. It is another thing entirely to both grant an appeal, then leave in effect the “punitive measures” (language I was fond of using, no less) which were the crux of the need for the appeal.

It is one thing to let snark slip in a moment of heated tensions, it is another thing entirely for a Moderator to continue to besmirch the character of a player after a granted appeal in such a way that anyone and everyone knows their attempted personal defense would be taken as confirmation of the character falsely attached to them, and further threaten so-called “punitive measures.”

It is one thing to leave content locked within the Evidence Locker board when it has overwhelmingly been proven to be objectionable – such as p*rn or g*re spam. It is another thing entirely to lock the entire posting history of a player away, and essentially strip them of any potentially exonerating evidence they might employ in their own defense.

It is one thing to accuse a known and habitual rules-lawyer of mini-modding. It is another thing entirely to do it, and provide no further clarification when you are called out for the bad faith of the content of such an accusation, spare to repeat what you said and pretend that clarifies things, then turn-tail and play cur when it becomes obvious your players (rightly) don't find that answer sufficient.

It is one thing to have a re-interpretation of the rules come into being, and admit that previous interpretations were faulty and that going forward the new interpretation will be used. It is another entirely to essentially accuse years worth of players, current staff, and retired staff of not knowing a rule, while simultaneously lockering the very post used by them to serve as a ceiling of acceptability for that rule. That's called gaslighting, if you didn't know.

Saying players are “obtuse,” calling their questions “stupid,” and – last but not least – pretending you are anything more than an over-glorified people greeter and content moderator for an obscure author's viral marketing campaign through accusing your players of needing to rebuild trust with you… These things are bad faith, and the latter is borderline delusional. You are not the source of morality for players, nor are you the absolute compass by which their ethical values are reckoned.

You are nothing more than a content moderator. Accept it. There's no shame in it, if you actually loved this community, this website, and were willing to put in the careful work of managing the confidence, trust, and faith of its playerbase.

I have said things to and about staff that I regret, regret at least the tone in which I said them. But I at least had the common courtesy of venting my misplaced frustrations with players behind the scenes, where they belong, where you can look back on them in hindsight and admit to yourself you were too brusque, too curt, too rude, and weren't looking at things from their perspective.

Instead you make that curtness, that brusque character, that rudeness, and now your vituperative tone a cornerstone of your personality.

I have no doubt this post will be immediately lockered as bad faith. That's fine. I don't believe the collective of M/A is behaving in good faith, so it's no skin off my teeth. Nor does it matter, because everyone who needs to see it already has long before I posted it.

Throughout this, at least before the “granting” of the appeal, I urged patience behind the scenes – often fighting a losing battle against players trying to vent their frustrations. Despite what some of M/A may think, I still had faith in them, confidence, trust in the institution, at least until very recently. After all, if I didn't, why would I have stuck around? Why would I have reported things?

As one of the “untrustworthy” masses that finds it difficult to believe a player can be accused of glorifying Nazism when they are playing an AI-driven state to such a degree of absolutist moral evil it borders on parody; as one of the “obtuse” players that finds it needlessly destructive to this community to apply new rules and novel interpretations retroactively without limit; as a “bitter ex-Senior Game Moderator” who finds the collective allowance by the Team of one of their Seniors to ablate (not "oblate") 20 years worth of carefully cultivated player confidence and faith…

Sedgistan and Crazy Girl shouldn't resign. You are contributing to one another’s permittance of treating the playerbase maliciously. They should be stood down by Administration from on high. I'm sorry, but the “dynamic” is no longer working, Admin. It wasn't working when I left and we talked, and it certainly isn't working now.

To the players: you were often wrong, but in this, you’re not. I have acted against many of you - be it warnings, bans, or deletions. By the thanks I still receive from those of you I have figuratively smacked, I know I at least did so fairly and in a tone that you understood had nothing to do with you as people, but that it was merely the business of the site. I want to publicly re-affirm that such was the case.

Some of you, you know who you are, stir sh*t to stir it. I get it. I like a little trollin’ myself from time to time. But recognize when it is time to set aside that childishness, and make a choice about how you want to be perceived - not by other players, much less staff, but by your future self.

To the staff I know, to those whom as individuals I trust. I will not name you for fear of retribution behind the scenes, a retribution I know will never be curt and succinct, but instead will present as a pattern of obscurantism and belligerence, know you are good to the players, know that despite disagreements with them, you have done the right thing. You have my thanks for your work on this community, and while I cannot speak for them, and while they may not thank you at this time, know that they share it, somewhere.

Good luck to you all.

Original Forum (Has Since Been Locked.)

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