Reasons for hall monitoring

John Poelstra poelstra at
Fri May 7 21:28:09 UTC 2010

Matt McCutchen said the following on 05/07/2010 01:41 PM Pacific Time:
> On Fri, 2010-05-07 at 20:05 +0100, Adam Williamson wrote:
>> (if you go to the policy to check this, you may be surprised to notice
>> it's suddenly sprouted the following section:
>> "In addition to non-excellent individual behavior, there can be
>> occasions where a mailing list thread gets "out of hand", and is no
>> longer productive.  [...]
> This would appear to be the action from the recent board meeting:
>> This seems to have been added 'for review' yesterday, which to me is a
>> rather odd approach for a policy which is already in practical use,
>> however much the top of the page claims it to be a 'draft'. Proposed
>> changes for review should happen elsewhere, not in the 'production copy'
>> of the policy.
> FWIW, I agree.
>> What worries me is that it was always my understanding, and I think the
>> understanding of others, that the hall monitoring policy does not grant
>> hall monitors the power to shut down threads they judge to be
>> repetitive. My understanding is it should only grant them the power to
>> shut down threads which violate the 'be excellent to each other' motto -
>> i.e., it's about the civility of the discussion, not the subject matter.
>> Whether shutting down repetitive threads is a good idea and they
>> _should_ have that power is a separate question; even if you think they
>> should, it's surely not appropriate for them to exercise that power
>> before it's actually been duly granted.
> The board meeting log suggests that they intended the policy to have the
> broader goal of keeping the discussion "constructive".  I'm not sure to
> what degree the policy can be considered something to follow by letter,
> independently of its intent.
> (BTW, John Poelstra made two more revisions to the policy 20 minutes
> ago.)

Correct.  He was following up on an action item he took from the meeting 
which was to draft up some clear objectives for having the policy in the 
first place :)


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