Wow! 4001 post! That's commendable, Diane! : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

My, what a number! 4001 post this forum alone. Remarkable! Congratulations, Diane. You have certianly put in a lot of time and effort around here.


-- Sigmund (Analyst@see.clearly), July 13, 1999


Thank you...

Killer ( a.k.a. Kelly (, etc.

But you need some of Freud's analysis more than I do.

Please stop trolling, or I will be more than happy to contact your D.C. head office and complain about your abuse actions here.

Either that or talk to a few reporters. Bet they'd be "interested" in your actions and where you "appear" to be coming from.

'Nuf said.


-- Diane J. Squire (, July 13, 1999.

"And by the way, Diane, with power comes responsibility. There has been a noticeable change in the tone of many of your posts recently, frequently condescending, often insulting, occassionally dictatorial. Just because Ed has annointed you, don't let the power go to your head and use your position to make veiled (and not so veiled) threats of deletion to those you disagree with."

"RMS", June 21, 1999

"You, however, have convinced me that your job description needs some serious major surgery or at the very least should be read to you prior to any post you make. By and large, the most viscious posts and personal attacks have come when YOU attempt to control the scene. It is your posts about taking votes to delete or chasing off trolls or having the SYSOPS post rules that has everyone in an uproar. OT threads come and go  but your repeated attempts to limit them just make matters worse. It is you, Miss Squire, that not only continues to stir this messy smelly pot  but I think that you just might be responsible for chasing away some of the most talented folks on this forum. And all because you got appointed (volunteered? Drafted? Selected?) as a moderator and seem to have an innate compulsion to control. Im sorry  thats harsh, but thats the impression I have of you."

"justme", June 29, 1999

"I don't often express myself so bluntly, but sometimes there is no suitable euphemism. You are closed-minded, self-righteous and flagrantly playing favorites.

"When such a person has moderator powers, and feels "her" forum is most threatened by one of the most reasonable voices here, and never deigns to notice the constant mud being slung by those who all happen to be at the doomer extreme, there is ample reason to be upset. You are a judged clothed in a white sheet and pointed hood. The applause you expect from your sycophants cannot disguise the disgrace you have brought upon yourself."

Flint, July 1, 1999

'Nuf said.

-- Bears repeating (, July 13, 1999.

Well, Bears repeating,

One can only try, and learn by failure. Or not.

And I did apologize...

Lets Discuss CENSORSHIP And Apologies... Mr. Decker 0011hn

However, there is still an effort on-going trolling action to disrupt this Forum.

Ignoring the problem, doesnt seem to work. Never did.

What would you suggest?

Starting a new forum perhaps? The MoD group did that.

TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) Preparation Forum (Y2K Prep Only Discussions)

http:// TimeBomb%202000%20%28Y2000%29%20Preparation%20Forum

Now what? Its still Y2K. Preferably. Or not... to you.


-- Diane J. Squire (, July 13, 1999.

What's interesting is, now that the pollys have been disproved on all of the salient points (We'll be COMPLIANT! Done by Dec, Mar, Jun! No Proble...ah, did you say 4 million gallons?, etc etc), they resort to this childish trolling to try and clog the forum with their outlandish drivel. And then they complain that we have censored their juvenile BS.

Ironically, we GI's seem to keep coming back stronger and more determined to get the word out.

-- a (a@a.a), July 13, 1999.


I find your initial post above appalling, chilling, and indefensible. You have:

1) Abused your sysop privilege in publicly identifying a poster. Because you have the right to open up anyone's email address does not give you the right to broadcast identities to the forum.

2) You have threatened to contact the "organization" for which the poster works.

3) You have threatened to contact to the press with the poster's identity, stating that you think the press might find it "interesting" to know where the poster "appears" to be originating from.

You accuse the poster of "abuse action." But your actions here display the most flagrant abuse of power.

Perhaps it is time to voluntarily relinquish your sysop hat, Diane. You have proved that you cannot reasonably or rationally exercise authority or responsibility. How can you possibly justify or defend your above writing?

-- Celia Thaxter (, July 13, 1999.


poster has been identified?? are you serious?? How??

-- David Butts (, July 13, 1999.

Celia Thaxter ( a.k.a Killer ( a.k.a. Kelly ( ???

-- a (a@a.a), July 13, 1999.

I'm sick of this condescending hag.

-- Sick of Diane (, July 13, 1999.

Celia also = concerned.

-- lisa (, July 13, 1999.

Mr. Butts,

Diane here identified prior "handles" of the poster:

"Thank you...

"Killer ( a.k.a. Kelly (, etc."

One ought to be able to post here anonymously under as many "handles" as one desires without fear that a sysop will open up email and "out" people by cross-referencing identities.

"a", "lisa", and others are free to attempt to "out" people on conjecture if they so wish. They are not forum sysops.

-- Celia Thaxter (, July 13, 1999.

Hey, Diane, cory hamasaki thinks you've been chasing the Pollies over to cs-y2k. Do you think he's right? 8^)

-- Rich Miller (, July 13, 1999.

Thank you, Diane for every effort to keep this forum focused on the coming Y2K debacle.

-- Bill P (, July 13, 1999.

Celia Thaxter:

Ms. Thaxter,

Ms. Diane is the SYSOPS here, not you. She can damn well do as she pleases with this forum, and she can do so without your permission, or the permission of anyone else in the forum, and she can do so at any time that she should decide to do so.

If you don't care for that little tid-bit of news, or should this come as some great shock to you, Please feel free to leave the forum. I am reasonably certain that no one here would really give a good damn if you do or if you do not.

Get down off of your high horse Lady, your undies are showing.


-- sweetolebob (, July 13, 1999.


It is my considered opinion that you have shown admirable restraint and you are doing a good job of handling a "thankless" position. You have tolerated rude, ill-mannered, trash-mouthed posts from people that have absolutely nothing of value to contribute to this forum.

I would not want the responsibility that you have willingly assumed to try and keep this forum viable for those of us concerned about y2k. Keep up the good work and let those that are dissatisfied go elsewhere to display their disruptive behaviour. Since they contribute nothing, they are not owed any consideration.

-- Nadine Zint (, July 13, 1999.

Personally, I fail to understand why any moderator is required on this forum at all. Certainly we're all free to ignore anything we don't want to read.

I've seem a few categories of posts that some might find objectionable:

1) Utterly off topic. Since Andy's departure, these have dropped drastically. In any case, most of us are here because of an interest in y2k, and we tend to ignore unrelated posts, so they die queitly.

2) Pure personal attacks, or attempts to ridicule or belittle other posters, regardless of the topic. We have about half a dozen regular posters here who just can't seem to help themselves. But these don't use up much space, and we can either skip them or laugh at them (if we're adults) or even approve of them (if we're children).

3) Posts that seem like deliberate attempts to stir up acrimony. Maybe our resident attackers provoke these, because it's so easy to get them going. But mostly these die quiet deaths also.

4) Posts of declared compliance, positive test results, positive personal experiences, or optimistic analysis. These are both on-topic and informative, but contrary to the forum religion.

From Diane's statement that ignoring "trolls" doesn't seem to be working, it seems most probable that she's objecting to threads in category (4). This is reinforced by the observation that her strongest support is found among extremists, and her strongest critics tend to be moderates. And also by the fact that the posters she has personally identified as being troublesome category (2) or (3) people, are invariably at the optimistic end of the spectrum, despite the vast preponderance of these (which she ignores every chance she gets) being at the doomer extreme.

Let's face it, off-topic posts, and childish insults, don't amount to very much of the traffic here (once we mask out a few frequent offenders, anyway. We might as well, since they seem to be in Diane's blind spot.) So if there is any long-term, systematic 'threat' to Diane's domain, it is being posed by those who don't see any big catastrophe coming our way. Diane's precious forum isn't being threatened by trash posts, but rather by *disagreement* with her opinion! She's repeatedly tarred people with the accusation that they have also posted on 'enemy' boards. The very idea!

So the issue of whether a moderator is required at all, boils down to a question of whether we are willing to tolerate a wide range of opinions, or whether we'd prefer lockstep conformity. Clearly, Diane's problem is that she senses that the desired conformity can only be enforced by abusing her powers. Yet if she doesn't abuse them, optimists will continue to construct reasonable arguments! The horrors! Oh, what to do, what to do?

Stay tuned...

-- Flint (, July 13, 1999.


You're confusing forum sysop duties with that of forum moderator either intentionally or on purpose. Regardless, you did a great job of saying nothing of substance in a really long thread.


-- forum regular (@ is @ fan.of Diane), July 13, 1999.


You haven't raised any kids, have you? Your commentary, if placed in a house with kids and their opinions and demands would be a recipe for disaster. Why do you think rules are used in court, or in debates, or any gathering of people with different agendas? I am not saying this to you in a mean way, just wondering if you have spent 20 years or more of raising kids who make the same demands as our disrupters?

-- Gordon (, July 13, 1999.


No, I haven't raised any children. The lack of this experience may well have deprived me of insights you can help me with.

So I ask: Who are these disrupters, and what are their disruptions? I admit I haven't seen them. Yeah, there've been a few posts off-topic, but not many and these are easily ignored. There have been plenty of personal attacks, but skipping over them is no big deal. The focus of the forum really is on all aspects of y2k (sometimes apparently indirect, but who knows what y2k will bring?). Certainly anyone coming here to investigate potential problems will have no difficulty at all finding worthwhile discussions addressing the topic very well.

So I'm asking you: What function do you see a moderator properly serving here anyway? Do we need one? What for?

-- Flint (, July 13, 1999.


Please have pitty on an older, very busy person. I read this forum from bottom to top because the good is often burried with the trash. I miss so much because I have not the time. Why must all of us have to inspect this slime so carefully. Surely, you yourself could help. Please, please, oh puuuuhhhlleeeeeese! Delete 90% of this trash and you would have a great forum. Expunge the Klinton haters, the chem-trailors, the NWOers, the trilateralites, the better deaders, the illuminutty; the folks who hate anything related to fractional reserve banking, the federal reserve, the US treasury, the IRS, the President's wife and daughter, liberals, abortionists, atheists, and/or jews. I just don't have the time. Hear my plea! The foum is Y2K!

Take a look at Rick's forum above... now that forum is both focused and well respected. This one is quickly becoming a circus. Please do not listen to those who carp on censorship. They are the worst offenders! Delete their protests! Off with their fingers.

Sincerely pounding on my keyboard at this point,

-- Uhmm... (, July 13, 1999.


I agree, go right ahead and get rid of the garbage. Those who post here with good intentions, be they 'polly' or 'doomer', do not seem to get as upset as those who post here with nasty intent.

I doubt seriously that anyone who lurks or posts to this forum regularly, would miss a single one of those complaining about the moderation.

-- Dian (, July 13, 1999.


-- jeanne (, July 13, 1999.

Uh, are you people seriously requesting that someone else determine what you are permitted to read? Do you want Diane to also tell you what to think? Do you realize how closely related these are?

I'm stunned.

-- Flint (, July 13, 1999.

Yes Flint you are "stunned"...probably from that drop on the head to you took as a kid. But thanks for demonstrating to all that you are as crazy as Milne makes you out to be.

Flint, I too am against censorship. But what we have here is a forum of folks that think that the y2k period is going to be a problem. And its becoming increasingly congested with both legitimate and illegitimate posts. Have you noticed how fast threads scroll of the main page now Flint? Have you noticed how many threads are started by polly trolls Flint? Do you think that "Killer" should be allowed to take control of the forum Flint? How about William Casey and all the other deranged perverts that roll in occasionally? You made it quite clear to me just how unobjective you are about this subject when you compared me to Y2K Pro a couple months ago. Ordinarily I would have taken that comment in stride, but you actually meant it. And it stems from your loathing of Milne, which you brought with you from your c.s.y2k days.

Your accusations against Diane are groundless. Now apologize immediately or we're gonna censor you. :)

-- a (a@a.a), July 13, 1999.


Truly, I can't explain about raising kids. It's an experience that doesn't lend itself to words. It's about time, long years of learning. One guy on the radio said it best. He said: "When I was in my early 20's without any kids, I had half a dozen theories on how to raise them. Now I'm in my 40's with half a dozen kids and no theories." Or, try reading the book "Lord of The Flies" to see what happens when there is no adult supervision. Flint, this isn't an area (being a good parent) where open debate can be used in every instance. Sometimes you just have to lay down the law. If you haven't been there, and been run over a few times, you can't even imagine it. Some of the posters here are just plain troublemakers, engaging in some malicious mischief. Hard to imagine? Sad but true!

-- Gordon (, July 14, 1999.

" ...I do believe in spooks, I do, I do, I do, I do..."

The Wizard of OZ 1939

-- Barb (, July 14, 1999.

I didn't read anything by Killer or William Casey, why bother? Increased congestion means my reading becomes a bit more selective, but that hasn't been hard at all. And we've noticed before Ed left that most posts here have a half-life of about 12 hours, so very few threads (not all) have effectively died before the scroll away anyway. I try to address y2k issues as well as I can, and skip the irrelevant threads (also, drop threads that started out on-topic, but degenerated into bickering, which happens often enough anyway).

I compared 'a' to y2k Pro in the sense that both are advocates rather than analysts, like lawyers on opposite sides of a case. The thrust of most of their posts is to discredit another poster, rather than to evaluate any y2k information itself. I rate 'a' as a more subtle and effective advocate, for what it's worth.

Still, the reasons put forward for more active moderator activity remain disingenuous. Congestion? Rapid scrolling? Mischief? These claims vary from irrelevant to trivial. The effort required to read and respond more selectively is barely noticeable.

It seems very clear to me that the *real* reason behind this smokescreen, is that the near-uniform conviction that y2k will be a 7+ is being increasingly questioned. So long as we only have a very few token optimists, and we can gang up and shout them down every time, we can smugly feel we're not bigots. But when the number of positive posts becomes large enough to threaten to undermine the power base of the bullies, something *must* be done.

Imagine if Mr. Decker were moderator, and whenever he named "known troublemakers" he named 'a', Ray, Andy, and Will continue (and somehow never mentioned y2k pro, mutha, etc.) In that case, would you still be hollering for restrictions on the grounds of congestion? I ask that question seriously.

I agree there's a good deal of noise in here. But I fear that the distinction between noise and opposing opinions either isn't being made by those who ask for moderation, or the two are being equated. This is what worries me.

-- Flint (, July 14, 1999.


I concur with your statement, "I agree there's a good deal of noise in here. But I fear that the distinction between noise and opposing opinions either isn't being made by those who ask for moderation, or the two are being equated."

It would appear that there are more than a few who would agree with Ms. Rosie's, "So what if it's in the Constitution? Enough is enough!"

Ordinarily, I would simply shake my head and walk away, but here I find that I cannot do that. Not only do I violently disagree with that perspective, I believe that the people holding to it are my neighbors and fellow citizens. It must not be ignored.

Ben Franklin may be long dead, and many may consider him irrelevant, but the fact remains that he was a giant among men and left much of great value for us all. One of the most valuable bits of wisdom is the bit about not trying to trade freedom for security. It's a form of blackmail and will never succeed.

-- Hardliner (, July 14, 1999.

In the absence of a response from Ms. Squire, perhaps other forum sysops (whoever they may be) and sysop advisors might offer their thoughts on the following. Is it ethical or advisable for forum sysops to:

1) use the sysop "key" to "unlock" posters' e-mail identities?

2) publicly announce such identities or "handles" to the forum at large?

3) privately share poster identities "off forum" with individuals via email?

4) contact organizations for which posters may be employed or otherwise associated?

5) contact the media regarding a poster's identity, opinions, and place of employment?

Having assumed, perhaps naively, that sysops respected and protected the privacy of all who post here, I ask these questions sincerely. Ms. Squire's natural zest for research appears to have metamorphosized into a kind of alarmingly despotic zealotry. We are most of us, after all, Americans, and whimsical, imperious tyranny does not sit well with us.

Meanwhile, one of the forum's better minds offers a radically sane idea: do away with "moderators" altogether. Can we examine Flint's proposal and calmly consider its merits? In my mind, it would most closely resemble those days of Yourdom, when the forum ran wild and free. When Ed Yourdon moderated this forum, he was careful to maintain a markedly low-key profile. He certainly never threatened those that provoked or disagreed with him. His cool neutrality was wide enough, generous enough, big enough, to include all voices and opinions. On rare occasions he would delete the egregious pornographic or racist thread; otherwise, he let the place be.

I wish we might emulate that ideal, the "days of Ed." Flint's proposal would encourage the return of such a standard. Until then, as long as a moderator is allowed to cry "off with their heads" to those irrationally perceived as threatening "her" forum, the freedoms we enjoyed under of Mr. Yourdon's reign appear increasingly remote.

-- Celia Thaxter (, July 14, 1999.

Celia, you sure know some big words.

-- Lisa (lisa@hungry.lunch_when), July 14, 1999.

Celia and Flint, Do you think that hoaxsters, such as Poole, should be allowed free reign of the forum? Do you think that folks who use multiple handles for the sole purpose of trolling and wasting our valuable time should be allowed to subvert Ed Yourdon's stated mission?

And what's this "contact the media regarding a poster's identity, opinions, and place of employment?" Did I miss something?

-- a (a@a.a), July 14, 1999.

I have a novel idea. Let's talk about y2k.

"This forum is intended for people who are concerned about the impact of the Y2000 problem on their personal lives, and who want to discuss various fallback contingency plans with other like-minded people."

-- What (it's@all.about), July 14, 1999.

The Debunking Y2K forum displays IP numbers on its posts. ID of IP numbers is available to anyone at WhoIs, including foreign customers.

-- Look it (up@your.self), July 14, 1999.

If I used any words you do not understand, Lisa, feel free to contact me and I'll explain them to you.

-- Celia Thaxter (, July 14, 1999.


Thank you for your efforts. No, I don't want to see indiscriminate deletions of posts. But some things you've said, plus other hints here and there have led me to suspect that we are being subject to a well coordinated disinformation campaign....

Out of Washington, DC you say? Will wonders never cease.

So, let the buyer beware. Especially of posters who appear and disappear like an April snow... (at least around here).

-- Jon Williamson (, July 14, 1999.


We've had very few deliberate hoaxes, certainly not enough to constitute 'congestion'. And people here have seemed to enjoy the challenge of tracking them down -- a challenge made all the more difficult by the often subtle distinction between deliberate hoaxes and the, uh, highly imaginative interpretations put on a lot of our y2k material by sincere people.

As for the multiple names, I had to puzzle over this for a while. What difference does it make whether we get 1 post each from N people, or one person making N posts, whether they use different names each time or not. After all, the post contains whatever value it contains regardless, right?

And then it struck me! Use of different names confuses the *attackers*! They aren't sure whom they might be attacking. So I think you should recognize that use of multiple names only disturbs your particular proclivities; it's irrelevant to those who pay attention to the message rather than the messenger.

-- Flint (, July 14, 1999.

O.K. "what" lets talk about y2k.

"This forum is intended for people who are concerned about the impact of the Y2000 problem on their personal lives, and who want to discuss various fallback contingency plans with other like-minded people."

"Concerned about the impact of the Y2000 problem" - will it be bad? how bad? Do I prepare for 3 weeks, couple months or a year? More?

Isn't discussing ALL sides of the issue relevant to contigency planning? i.e. if you really only need, lets say, 2 months of preps, why encourage people to get out of the stock market, get out of the city and lay in 1 years worth of food?

Or, if only a few days worth of preps, why continue to discuss months or years of preperation?


Ed used to say "post anonymously if you like, just please use your own 'handle' consistantly so others can get to 'know' you" Those days are long gone. (I am currently posting using an anonymous service because I dis-like the current sysops methodology of "checking" who is posting what. Posts should be evaluated for content, not by who posts them.

Some of us (used to be an 8) have come down on the y2k scale based on the newest information. That does not seem to be tolerated anymore on this discussion board.

-- get over (yourselves@you.self.importants), July 14, 1999.


"And what's this 'contact the media regarding a poster's identity, opinions, and place of employment?' Did I miss something?"

I was referring to the above statement by Ms. Squire:

"Either that or talk to a few reporters. Bet they'd be 'interested' in your actions and where you 'appear' to be coming from."

-- Celia Thaxter (, July 14, 1999.

suspect that we are being subject to a well coordinated disinformation campaign.... Out of Washington, DC you say? -- Jon Williamson

-- ? (questions@and.morequestions), July 14, 1999.

uh Celia, I must have ADD...what in the flying f*ck have those two statements got to do with each other?

-- a (a@a.a), July 14, 1999. must be thinking of the deBunkery, where they posted "Yan's" employer's name and threatened to contact them. Could that be it dearie?

-- a (a@a.a), July 14, 1999.



Look, the two statements have everything to do with each other. Ms. Squire threatened to contact the media regarding "Sigmund," who initiated this thread. She thinks the media would find it "interesting" to know the "actions" of this poster and where said poster "appears" to be "coming from."

Her statement seems pretty clear to me, and I don't understand your confusion here.

-- Celia Thaxter (, July 14, 1999.

get over,

So is the two months of preps you mentioned acceptable to you? If not, what is? Since this forum is for Y2K contingency planning, comments about Y2K not being serious could be misinterpreted as suggesting that no prep at all is needed. A clarification that you believe prepping is prudent might help reduce misunderstandings.

If I was trying to figure out whether I needed liability only or comprehensive auto insurance for my car, and someone told me not to worry about it because I wasn't going to have an accident...I would not consider that person to be a "moderate." It's prudent to have auto insurance, even if you think the odds of having to use it are less than 50%.

An analogy:


Life is filled with risk and surprising outcomes. That is why we pay insurance premiums to cover improbable, but not impossible surprises that can damage our health, homes, cars, and businesses. Every such situation requires a personal assessment. Should your car insurance include a collision rider? If not, you can reduce your current out-of- pocket expense. How risk averse are you?

Right now, people are attempting to assess Y2K risk.


-- Linkmeister (, July 14, 1999.

Celia? and this bothers you? Why?

-- Lisa (, July 14, 1999.

I'd give Diane the benefit of the doubt on 'Sigmund' unless you've seen what he's posted under other aliases, Celia. Diane may know something you don't. For all we know Sigmund might have been encouraging violent, anti-social behavior.

-- We (dont@know.yet), July 14, 1999.


Suppose a forum moderator looked up your e-mail address and was able to determine from it your place of employment (you usually post from "at work now"). Suppose said moderator no longer liked your posts, and decided to report your use of this forum on company time to your employer. Would that bother you? If so, why?

I confess I have a hunch that it would indeed bother you. The reasons it might disturb you are probably similar to why I am troubled by Ms. Squire's threats to report "Sigmund" to his office and to the media.

By the way, no matter what "crimes" Sigmund is guilty of that Ms. Squire may have private knowledge of (who knows?), it does not justify Ms. Squire's threats against him in a public forum. She is a forum "moderator," and her very title seems to suggest that she encourage forum decorum.

Before reading this thread, I assumed that our sysops would protect posters' privacy and workplace identities. It's an ideal that stems from living in a society where one feels free to pursue one's thought, no matter how wayward, without fear of being "outted" in public by those who lord authority over you. In fact, this forum's recent fascination with "outting" others strikes me as eerily reminiscent of McCarthyism. Personally, I rather dislike snooping.

I note that no one who bears "keys" to this forum has yet wanted to take a stab at answering the questions posed above. We have not yet made the acquaintance of all our moderators, and complaining of their veils has proven useless. In their absence, Lisa, perhaps you would like to take a shot at answering the questions. What do you think is advisable or ethical conduct for our forum sysops?

-- Celia Thaxter (, July 14, 1999.


just so you know, Lisa also has a "mini-crystal pyramid" given her by the sysops to "view" who posts from where. There are several others as well.

It is part and parcel of the kult mentality

You have no privacy on this forum at all.

-- Tattle tale (narc@narc.narc), July 14, 1999.

Now hey: trying to figure out who you smartass anon trolls are is FUN for me. Not work; I don't work in tandem with anybody.

Celia: to answer your question, let's just say that the troll activity here over the last six months (and your knowledge of that "one" post indicates that you are, indeed, a old-timer) has grown exponentially and is expected to get even worse as we approach the dreaded date.

This is not a forum about soap operas or horoscopes or German shorthair pointers or even Ricky Martin. This is a forum that MAY TURN OUT TO SAVE A LOT OF PEOPLE UNNECESSARY PAIN, DISCOMFORT, INCONVENIENCE AND MAY ACTUALLY SAVE LIVES. Who knows. Nobody'll know fer sure for another six months.

As an old-timer, you are no doubt familiar with the OVERT, ONGOING attempts to shut down this forum. The sysops and moderators are in a position to discover WHO is attempting this (we all know WHY) and warn those attempting such to desist. Civility, patience and outright pleading hasn't worked. If warnings aren't effective, the last resort is probably password-protection... which nobody wants.

TOSing disruptive participants is common at most fora... but rarely do disruptors receive the advance warning that Diane is giving. Also, to my knowledge, NOBODY'S ever been tossed at TB2000.

And, I seriously doubt that Diane would furnish names to any media she chose to alert..... just the institution.

Now: the offender has been warned. He/she can behave "properly" or be locked out. Where is the injustice in this?

Oh, and, "hi", Buddy.

-- (funny- narc narc narc) (, July 14, 1999.


I haven't seen any attempt, overt or otherwise, to shut down the forum. What are you referring to?

-- Flint (, July 14, 1999.

for flint "Doc" Paulie tells about effort to remove TB2000 from MIT server

-- just (4@U.tosee), July 14, 1999.


Thanks, I hadn't seen that one. To the extent I can follow him (Paulie is always so incoherent), he's objecting on procedural grounds, which seem pretty shaky at best.

But I don't believe Doc Paulie even posts on this forum. He might want to see it shut down, and might be taking steps external to simply conversing here to do so, but I don't see how moderating the content of this forum itself would affect Paulie's efforts in any way. What am I missing?

I do agree with Paul Davis somewhat, that if any single problem makes this forum difficult to sift through, it's the doomist-attackers who wander around doing their damndest to stifle any genuine effort to analyze information presented. Remember Norm? Instead of discussing what his postings may mean to y2k, the activity was almost entirely personal attacks against Norm himself for posting politically incorrect articles. Any effort to ask "Well, what does this mean and what does it *not* mean?" were shouted down. Believe me, BTDTGTTS.

As Wolverine has been saying lately, one of the big problems here is that posts that do nothing more than call others names, are considered valuable contributions if they attack the "right" people, and troll posts if they attack our religious leaders. I mean this literally -- keep everything in these posts identical except the names, and they change between valuable and trash like a lightswitch.

As a sadly excellent illustration, just LOOK at the response Paulie got on that thread. How many people questioned the procedural grounds (the 'appropriate' use of MIT facilities)? Nobody. Just one mindless attack after another. Paulie's opinion of this forum could not have been more resoundingly well supported.

-- Flint (, July 14, 1999.

This is one of the most resoundingly incoherent threads we have ever had (and we've had a bunch in the past four months). It can't even be termed a tempest in a teapot, that's too grandiose.

Diane isn't Ed Yourdon.

Ed Yourdon isn't Ed Yourdon.

What Ed would have deleted/kept/said if he had continued to manage the forum is unknown. His past behavior is not necessarily a guide since the forum has, uh, evolved since his departure).

You/I are not privy to the reasons behind Diane's posts on the subject of trolls. She is under nil obligation to explain her reasons to us.

This is a moderated forum and far too lightly moderated for my convictions of what is appropriate at this stage of the game. I would have deleted this entire thread as soon as it was launched. Want to attack me over that? Go ahead, I don't care a fig.

I think Diane should STOP being so consensual. She knows my opinions on that. I believe this forum should be handled exactly like the prep forum, whether people like it or don't, even though I suspect I would have many bones to pick with her about which threads, posts ended up being deleted here (much though I respect Diane, we have very different views on Y2K, politics, religion and many things).

Yet others think she IS the censorship queen.

She can't win, ya see? Hopefully, she realizes that and will pursue whatever course as moderator she chooses. That is the mandate she was given by Ed: do it your way.

End of story.

-- BigDog (, July 14, 1999.

Flint, how soon we forget. Do I have to post the link to Biffy where Mutha, maria and Deano, et al planned their "takeover" of TB2000?

You are as ignorant as the day is long son. This is NOT A POLLY FORUM FLINT. Biffy and deBunkery are. This forum is for those that Get It. Get it?

-- a (a@a.a), July 14, 1999.


I do my best to tune out the silly games and pay attention to y2k, so I tend to miss these exercises. I find the polly forums useless because nobody there takes y2k seriously enough to put any more thought into it than the knee-jerk disastrophiles do here. But at least here, there are some who make the effort to understand, not just mindlessly proclaim either disaster or no-problem.

I admit I don't quite understand the cult of personality on either forum. I find entirely too much time and energy spent trying to discredit messengers, and not enough on the message. But this is nothing more than my own preference, and obviously totally different from your own.

-- Flint (, July 14, 1999.

Ahhh, but --a, there are varying degrees of GET IT around here, haven't you noticed? If you don't get it like I get it... well, of course you GET IT, don't you? Why would you bother to read down this far?

-- Barb (, July 14, 1999.

Flint -- Considering how much time you spend trying to discredit messengers with whom YOU disagree (Milne, a and others), often by name, and NOT just because you are "weighing their posts for content", but because you have defined their character (crazy, extremists, doomers) it is remarkable that you always think of yourself as "above the fray", the "honest man" for which Diogenes was seeking. It's either blindness or hypocrisy. I have hoped it is the former.

None of us are above the fray, Flint, you least of all.

-- BigDog (, July 14, 1999.

Big Dog:

While I do my best to *show* that some posters have stretched things way out of shape to make their cases, of course I fall well short of my goals. I'm clay at least up to my knees.

-- Flint (, July 14, 1999.

Flint you said

"not just mindlessly proclaim either disaster or no-problem. "

That is the disconnect between you and I in a nutshell. There is NO QUESTION that y2k will be a disaster. The question is HOW BAD - 3 day storm like the US government says, or worse. We don't need folks here to tell us that it'll be "no problem". We're beyond that now. OK?

-- a (a@a.a), July 14, 1999.

--a, the presence of a "we" also indicates a "them." In which group of "we" do you belong? Why would anyone bother to post anything or even bother to read here at all if one already knew what they needed to hear? Y2k may or may not be alot of things. The future may or may not be alot of things. Who can say? Can you?

-- Barb (, July 15, 1999.

Accept the limitations of the forum, or find a new one. Hey, here is an idea - how about starting your own?

There are new posting rules here. Follow the rules and all is well. Do not follow the rules and your post is deleted. What is so hard to understand about that?

There are dozens of forums on the web that deal with y2k. None of the rest of them put up with half the garbage that gets posted here.

There is a goldmine of information on this forum, unfortunately, a lot of people get turned off before they find it. All of the deleted posts that I caught a glimpse of, had absolutely no value to them. None. Nada. Zip.

The fact that posts remain, that treat Diane unkindly about her moderating duties, shows me that she does not just delete at will. Nor does she delete what is simply personally offensive. So good for her, because if I was the moderator, those posts would be a faint memory.

Flint still gets to be nasty-nice when he wants to and Celia gets to be catty, so maybe they should just count their blessings and get on with their lives.

-- (, July 15, 1999.

Big Dog,

Thank you very much for posting on this thread. I was hoping to get some feedback from forum sysops, or from advisors to the sysops. Correct me if I am wrong, but weren't/aren't you a sysop advisor?

You've made your feelings about "trolling" pretty clear. I can appreciate that because you believe Y2K will have serious consequences, you think the forum ought to be focused more on prepping and getting ready than on debating the outcome of Y2K or its causes and effects, at least at this point. Fair enough.

I can also appreciate that Ed is gone now, and there's no use hankering after something that's lost and over. I accept the plain reality that the forum is in new hands now.

Again on the same subject, however: what exactly are the responsibilities of the new moderators to the forum at large, in your mind? Given that they exercise authority and enjoy certain privileges that we lack, are they under any obligation to respect higher principles that accompany the acceptance and exercise of authority? If yes, what are those higher principles? If no, what would prevent them from abusing their authority? What are their responsibilities to individual posters, particularly the privacy of posters who prefer to participate anonymously?

Is it acceptable for a sysop to inflict dictatorial rule according to the day's whimsy, or do they consult existing guidelines before making decisions? Are sysops simply responsible above all to their own interests and the interests of those who share their opinions of Y2K?

Finally, what do you think of Flint's proposal to abolish moderators altogether? Are moderators needed here, and if so, why?

Forgive me if the overall gist of these questions overlap somewhat. I am mostly seeking to gain a picture of what you think constitutes proper conduct for forum sysops. I pose these questions in a philosophical spirit, Big Dog, and hope to read your thoughtful response.

Thank you.

-- Celia Thaxter (, July 15, 1999.

get a life, the fact that negative Diane posts remain exemplifies to me that one cannot afford to risk further deterioration of one's authority and practices once these have come into question and under scrutiny.

-- Barb (, July 15, 1999.

Politics does indeed make strange bedfellows! The pollys are defending the rights of a character sometimes known as Killer ( Killer here plays the role of a GI not shy about using guns. Pollys should really think twice before encouraging Killer.

-- Taking (A@Closer.Look), July 15, 1999.

... In the area of free speech, the government excludes child pornography, defamation, and libel from the protection of the first amendment. 42 Hate speech, however, is permitted as long as the speech does not constitute "fighting words." 43 Defined in Chaplinsky v. State of New Hampshire, "fighting words" are words to which "their very utterance inflict injury or tend to incite an immediate breach of peace...[and] are of such slight social value as a step to truth that any benefit that may be derived from them is clearly outweighed by the social interest in order and morality." 44


Demands have increasingly been made to regulate the Internet against pornography, terrorist activity, and offensive speech... [Proposed legislation] provides protection for "good Samaritan blocking and screening" by designating such providers as publishers. 77 Good Samaritan blocking and screening refers to a voluntary action taken in good faith to restrict access to material that a user or provider considers to be obscene, lewd, lascivious, filthy, excessively violent, harassing, or otherwise objectionable. 78 The bill shields good Samaritans from liability by classifying them as publishers, instead of editors. 79


The University at Buffalo has no written policy regarding Internet use. The University does, however, subscribe to the ideology outlined in the Communications Act of 1934, which prohibits annoying and harassing communications.

-- Not a lawyer (not@prac.tice), July 15, 1999.


I must strongly object to what "appears" to be either a grave misunderstanding on your part or a deliberate twisting of Diane's words to further your position.

Diane did NOT say she would contact the media about you posting under a number of aliases (Killer, Kelly, Celia), using different "personalities", supporting different positions.

Diane DID say that *YOU* should consider contacting the media because she suspected that they would be VERY interested in your story and in what is going on.

As Killer, you were a very hard nosed pragmatist, with experience in "wet work". Not squeamish about doing what was needed. Period.

As Kelly, you were very "nicey nice", all offended that "anyone" could be mean to you or less than polite.

As Celia, you are a hairsplitter and a demanding of your "rights" in a medium where, quite bluntly, we don't have any true rights. Mr. Decker would be proud. Actually, I've talked to Ken off line, kinda like him. You are more of a weasel.

I've been a very active participant in the past on a very tightly moderated forum (not Y2K, Divorce-online, a support group I spent time on while going through a nasty, dragged out divorce. Met my wonderful new wife on line there). Forums are someone else's back yard. It is their ball, their bat, and THEIR RULES.

If you are working professionally and posting here is part of your duties, I'm sure we will not be rid of you. But, you have made me, at least, aware that we are "not alone".

-- Jon Williamson (, July 15, 1999.

The differences in moderation 'styles' of the new sysops v. Ed Yourdon's 'style' is not all that much different than when an established, respected, veteran manager of a company retires and turns the reins over to another person.

This 'changing of the guard' always presents opportunities for change of the actual organization. There will be people who view a change at the 'helm' as an opportunity to become more vocal; more insistent in having things 'their' way. Sometimes these individuals go out of their way to cause dissention among the ranks, perhaps as a power play to further their own position up the ladder. Sometimes they do it just because they can, not unlike students who 'test' the mettle of a substitute teacher. There is no real goal in mind for these people; they are not disruptive to further their own agenda, per se. They are just disruptive because they can be. Not unlike children in 'blended' families - testing the tolerance of a new step-parent.

Of course things are different because there are different moderators here. Ed retired as forum moderator in late May. It is now mid July; time has also moved on, and there are more events of an unsettling nature that have generated much discussion since he left.

Disruptive behavior is a symptom of insecurity.

-- Wilferd (, July 15, 1999.

I love it when people extoll the virtues of freedom and censorship in the same sentence.Like conservatives talking about smashing liberals.Freedom only exists when it protects the rights of people you despise.That's the price of freedom,it doesn't always work in our favor.For true lovers of freedom it is not too large a price to pay.

-- zoobie (, July 15, 1999.

Mr. Williamson,

Please reread Ms. Squire's initial post, where she writes, "I will be more than happy to contact your D.C. head office and complain about your abuse actions here....Either that or talk to a few reporters." Note the first-person singular tense. Also, I am not "Killer" or "Kelley."


I do not think that questions sincerely asked "disrupt" the forum, especially in this case, given that any number of answers is possible. Some people might find such questions troubling, however, especially questions that threaten their belief system or that cannot be answered simply.

-- Celia Thaxter (, July 15, 1999.

Celia said [I respond]

"Again on the same subject, however: what exactly are the responsibilities of the new moderators to the forum at large, in your mind? Given that they exercise authority and enjoy certain privileges that we lack, are they under any obligation to respect higher principles that accompany the acceptance and exercise of authority?"

[Diane is the sysop. There is a group of us that have agreed to help advise her if/as she requests it. So there aren't "moderators" as such (that is, these people have no right or ability to delete or otherwise interact behind the scenes with material being posted).

I'm not sure what you mean by "higher principles". Diane would have to address this if she chose to. I think she has explained her views on the forum and herself as sysop in a number of places already, so I'm not sure what another go-round would add. "Higher principles" sounds like one of those things that can be twisted any which way one wants.]

If yes, what are those higher principles? If no, what would prevent them from abusing their authority? What are their responsibilities to individual posters, particularly the privacy of posters who prefer to participate anonymously?

[I stated above that I am not privy to the reasons why Diane chose to phrase her first post on this thread as she did. Nor is she responsible to me to explain those reasons. I don't believe it would be legitimate to, for instance, say that "" is really "John Koskinen".

This is different, it seems to me, than speculating on whether or not multiple anonymous handles are being posted by the same anonymous person. And, as most of us know, that is generally only speculation anyway, since good anonymizers make it difficult to be sure even of that.] "Is it acceptable for a sysop to inflict dictatorial rule according to the day's whimsy, or do they consult existing guidelines before making decisions? Are sysops simply responsible above all to their own interests and the interests of those who share their opinions of Y2K?"

[Have you stopped beating your wife? This is not a sincerely worded question and I will not respond to it.]

"Finally, what do you think of Flint's proposal to abolish moderators altogether? Are moderators needed here, and if so, why?"

[My opinion on that is well-known. Within the limits of law, I believe the forum needs to be moderated in such a way that people with widely varying views can discuss and debate those views together. This includes the need to delete material that harasses. It should be done in as consistent a manner as possible.]

-- BigDog (, July 15, 1999.

Well well well.

Another thread full of smoke and mirrors, and no answers.

For a full discussion on the points raised in this thread, see the thread . .

"Censorship ? IMO our moderators are fair."

For those not inclined to read through, heres a synopsis.

1) The moderators have the responsibility to administrate the forum, but they are also bound by the same laws as any other person. They are also, as administrators, accountable for their actions, (and inactions), in law.

2) The exact interpretation of the forum posting guidelines as set out, rightly allow for the presence of a range of opinion on this forum. In practice however, they are being applied in a prejudicial and discriminatory way by the current moderators. This misapplication is unneccesary, has no logic basis, and is harmful to the forum. It is not, as claimed, being used legally as a defence mechanism to protect the forum against such behaviour by certain individuals which may be in contravention of the forum guidelines. It is being used as a means of punishment for a range of persons who may hold views or opinions which the moderators do not agree with. The distinction on who is punsihed and who isn't is simply the individual's opinion. This is prejudice in its purest form, and indirectly is a negation of the right of free speech. (1st amendment), protected by law and applicable in this case. 2a) This, even on a public internet forum, where proven, is in contravention to several US laws, punishable by up to 2 years imprisonment. (see legal details posted by Hardliner in the aforementioned thread )

3) The moderators are unwilling to enter into any discussion about their misuse of power, despite repeated (courteous) attempts to seek an answer, preferring instead to divert the conversation into the more inflammatory (but unrelated) issue of censorship, which is not the issue in hand. The issue in hand is the practive of prejudice and discrimination in contravention of the US constitution.

4) The moderators may also have breached certain peoples civil rights by their actions, (as detailed above, in the threat made to a poster by use of privilaged information). This activity, (by the way, not an isolated case) is also being undertaken in a prejudicial and discriminatory fashion.

5) This forum resides on equipment and bandwidth which is in part funded from the public (I.e taxpayers) purse. Additional responsibility is therefore inherent upon the forum administrators to behave within the letter of the law. They are not. This, currently, is another subject which the moderators are attempting to fudge.

Before sitting down to draft an angry reply to this post . . GO AND READ THE AFOREMENTIONED THREAD. Then ask yourself the following questions . .

(i) Do you agree with the need to protect the civil rights of all citizens under the US constitution ?

(ii) Are you prepared to stand by and permit those rights to be ignored, or limited, unlawfully, by persons who in some way represent you ?

(iii) Do you agree with such persons benefitting from public funding ?

(iv) Are you in favour of unaccountable dictatorship over transparent democracy ?

(v) Are you so bothered by the concept of controlling so- called "troll" postings, that you are unconcerned if a number of innocent (non-troll) bystanders have their rights trampled in the process ?

Having answered those questions, impersonally, impartially, in principle . . feel free to respond. It will be, if nothing else, interesting.

Kind Regards


-- W0lv3r1n3 (, July 15, 1999.

Big Dog,

Thank you for your response. You wrote that "Diane is the sysop." I was under the impression that there was more than one moderator. Is this incorrect? Is Diane Squire our only moderator?

I know it's hard to define "higher principles." I wanted your take on what those higher principles might mean to you. To me, they include strict impartiality, neutrality, aversion to self-interested passion or interests even when personally challenged or taunted, and protection of the ideals of free speech and free debate above all. I note that Ms. Squire has openly admitted on more than one occasion that she is not neutral. This troubles me. I believe that, at the least, the moderator must resolutely set aside any personal opinions about Y2K when wearing the sysop hat.

Let me rephrase the questions you did not want to answer. Do sysops consult existing guidelines? Who or what is the sysop above all most responsible to?

"Within the limits of law, I believe the forum needs to be moderated in such a way that people with widely varying views can discuss and debate those views together."

I'll raise a toast to that, Big Dog.


Thank you for contributing your synopsis. I appreciate your attempts to bring the principles behind this debate to light. It is telling that Ms. Squire has chosen to remain silent on the questions posed above. I suspect the issues explored on your thread and herein will keep surfacing until she or another forum sysop musters the courage to step to the plate and squarely answer the hard questions. In particular, I hope Ms. Squire will explain the threats made to "Sigmund." Then again, as moderator she may capriciously decide no explanation is necessary to "her" forum.

Finally, Flint's proposal to abolish the moderating function deserves support. Flint would make an ideal moderator given that he thinks no moderation is needed. He would certainly exercise a light touch. I second the notion that forum moderators be abolished, and propose that the keys be turned over to Flint, who will decline to use them.

-- Celia Thaxter (, July 15, 1999.


I have no quarrel with anyone asking a sincere question. Sincere, meaning: "pure, genuine. Free of dissimulation: HONEST" (courtesy of Merriam-Webster Dictionary)

But therein lies the 'rub': There are posts made by individuals whom I question their sincerity and motive. I question one's involvement in a group with a stated purpose (such as this forum) if the participant is involved solely for their own 'entertainment', and if said 'entertainment' detracts or disrupts the purpose of the group.

-- Wilferd (, July 15, 1999.


On a second reading, I can see how you took that opinion. I felt that Diane was suggesting that the poster call a few reporters. To each their own.

It has been stated on line that several posters, yourself included (you who suddenly appeared here to argue this point and what does it have to do with Y2K prep, anyway?) are originating from the same source and/or are the same person.

Here, we have your word against Diane's. No contest. It is like the city slicker moving to a small town and immediately starting to tell the "local yokels" how things should be done. Not gonna cut it.

Frankly, and I'm not sure why, but your somewhat supercillious attitude has pushed me closer to "flaming" than I have ever been here.

Again, and again. This is not a private playground. But, nothing here is up for a vote. NOTHING. If I don't like it, I'll go away. You, as everyone else, has that option.

I would like to see the foul mouthed attacks from both sides cease. I'd like to see Y2K resolved into a true bump in the road.

I'd like to see this thread die from exhaustion and sheer lack of interest. (G)

-- Jon Williamson (, July 15, 1999.

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