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Author Topic: Improving the current ban situation  (Read 944 times)
1miau
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May 20, 2019, 07:30:43 PM
Merited by bones261 (2), d5000 (1), Real-Duke (1), LoyceV (1), thandie (1), micgoossens (1), Unknown01 (1), Alex_Sr (1), taikuri13 (1), Coolcryptovator (1)
 #1

We have seen over 2500 bans now since plagiarisers are spotted effectively. But in my impression the punishment is very hard for mistakes they’ve made in the past, some of the posts are over 4 years old and the punishment of a permanent ban is in my opinion too much for some cases where just a link is missing or a
Quote
wasn't added.
I think we should rather focus on those users doing that intentionally where's no doubt that their goal was to do a copy-pasta, like for sigspam.



Some different ideas:


1. Give out plagiarism warning points

Before a user is banned, he can receive plagiarism warning points and if he gets up to let's say 10 warning points his account will be permanently banned. Each plagiarism will be rated by mods with warning points depending how blatant it was and documented with a link to the post in the profile. If the account is performing paid bumping etc., he can be banned with a 10-point penalty for a single abuse.

Of course, that would be a bigger change and needs to be planned diligently.


2. Use negative trust instead of permanent bans

Many bans are controversial especially if the post is already very old or not intentional plagiarism to deceive the community. If we introduce negative trust for plagiarism, the community would decide if they want to exempt the user or punish him.
That would be similar how the forum is not moderating scams and leaving it up to the community how to decide.


3. The rule "ban evasion" is obsolete

Maybe the rule "ban evasion" was useful when we had no merit system and banned users just registered a new account and started spamming again to rank up. Now we have the merit system and all banned spammers / shitposters won't be able to rank up ever again to the rank of their banned account.
Paid shills will ignore this rule anyways, the only thing that can stop them is an evil IP.
So, my conclusion is that the rule "ban evasion" is outdated especially if there are users willing to learn from their mistakes. The only possibility for them is to come back and post constructive content. We should offer them a second chance.


4. Introduce a community voting to decide if banned users should be unbanned

A very interesting idea would also be to give the decision to the community if a banned user can come back. If there's a majority voting for that, the user could get unbanned.
If we are going to do that, I would only allow it to vote for people who have earned at least 25 or 50 Merit. Such votes can be held in each ban appeal of the user.



After all I think the current situation went a little bit out of hand. I support it completely to kick useless plagiarizers who are contributing exactly zero to the discussions but right now it seems that the overall situation is not very beneficial for the forum. New users are scared and old members who are contributing good discussions are kicked because they forgot to post a link when BTC was around $200.
Yes, all of them have made mistakes and I'm sure that the valuable members have learned their lesson for the future.

It's just a compilation of a few ideas and if you like / dislike some of my suggestions or have to add an idea feel free to discuss it here Smiley

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May 20, 2019, 07:39:51 PM
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 #2

1. That's been implemented via signature bans. Global mods can decide if they give a warning (sig ban) or not.
2. No. Spam is not a trust issue.
3. Meh. It's already quite meaningless without proper enforcement.
4. No. Enforcement of forum rules should not be subject to voting.

old members who are contributing good discussions are kicked because they forgot to post a link when BTC was around $200.
I don't think that's true.

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May 20, 2019, 07:55:49 PM
 #3

10 warning points is bit to much for copy and paste , would say 2 because wit should keep the rules in some way !

About the " ban evasion " i say its good as it is now and shouldn't changed .

But as it is at the moment with all or a lot of bans it isnt good too because it will end up at some stage that every single letter will get reported maybe ! 

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philipma1957
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May 20, 2019, 07:58:57 PM
Merited by 1miau (1)
 #4

Okay to jump on this bandwagon I got an email 5 minutes ago.

Here is a cut and paste of it.

"Bittawm's Bitcointalk Account
Monday, May 20, 2019 2:59 PM


From:
"Bit Tawm" <bittawm@gmail.com>
To:
philiparcario@yahoo.com
Raw Message Printable View
Hey Phil.

I hope all is well.

I logged onto bitcointalk this morning to find my account has been banned.

All I can see is this message:

 "Sorry bittawm, you are banned from posting or sending personal messages on this forum.
You have been permanently banned by a forum moderator, probably due to spam or plagiarism. You may appeal here, but your chances are not good: banappeals...@theymos.e4ward.com"


I have no idea why I am banned. I have sent an email to the email address provided.

If there is anything you can do to help I would happily pay you some BTC.

I really value my bitcointalk account and like you I have worked hard to get myself to where I am now.

I do not know who else to contact, do you have a moderator's email address or do you know someone in bitcointalk that you could talk to.

I am not sure where I went wrong Cry

Thanks mate"









I have multiple problems here as bittawm has handled over 100,000usd in good gear sales in the last few years and never robbed anyone.

I can't find a ban list to see if it is true or a clever con

I have no idea how to address the complaint

and bittawm certainly has helped a lot of people buy gear.

I suspect if it is real  it could be this post ..  and it was flagged for plagarism   which to me is clearly not his intent.

He does clearly state he is the escrow for the sale

I am bittawm, I am an official member of the escrow teams as mentioned in my signature.

I have also conducted many group buys over the years with great success.

I am here as an escrow

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I see BTC as the super highway and alt coins as taxis and trucks needed to move transactions.
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May 20, 2019, 08:01:49 PM
 #5

     Is it possible that those people who are fortunate enough to get a signature ban end up getting another ban during their temp ban period? Since they all got temp bans, they are not able to delete any of their posts.  Also, I am sure there are a few who have no idea exactly which post(s) are ban worthy. I guess 60 days is plenty of time to search their own post history, to locate any offending posts, and delete the moment their temp ban is lifted.  That could be quite the chore for some of them.
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May 20, 2019, 08:05:11 PM
 #6

I am a part of another forums that give warnings in the forum of percentage but that percentage is only visible to the user so once they spam, it increases by 20% and once it reaches 100%, the user is permanently banned. Some give it as 3 warning levels and the same could be adopted here too where plagiarism gets a user a 30-50% warning while spamming gets 20-30%. This could be included with a message that informs the user why was he given a warning and for which post. It would help to reduce unban appeals too but it definitely puts a pressure on the moderators as the amount of spam I've seen on bitcointalk cannot be ever compared to other forums. A bot can be used for these purposes too.

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May 20, 2019, 08:18:27 PM
 #7

A warning system is/was useless for the spambots that copy/paste, use text spinners and used homograph attacks (this last one is no longer possible). For decent real users on the other hand who made a mistake a long time ago, I'm all for less severe punishment.

I can't find a ban list
See LIST: Banned users (updated once a day), BPIP (updated continuously), or modlog (only for the past 7 days).
He's banned:
   27. Legendary bittawm (Trust: 118: -0 / +13) (45 Merit earned (history)) (BPIP)

I suspect if it is real  it could be this post ..  and it was flagged for plagarism   which to me is clearly not his intent.

He does clearly state he is the escrow for the sale
He (or you) can open a ban appeal topic in Meta, if this is the reason it doesn't look like it deserves a ban.

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May 20, 2019, 08:25:10 PM
 #8

A warning system is/was useless for the spambots that copy/paste, use text spinners and used homograph attacks (this last one is no longer possible). For decent real users on the other hand who made a mistake a long time ago, I'm all for less severe punishment.

I can't find a ban list
See LIST: Banned users (updated once a day), BPIP (updated continuously), or modlog (only for the past 7 days).
He's banned:
   27. Legendary bittawm (Trust: 118: -0 / +13) (45 Merit earned (history)) (BPIP)

I suspect if it is real  it could be this post ..  and it was flagged for plagarism   which to me is clearly not his intent.

He does clearly state he is the escrow for the sale
He (or you) can open a ban appeal topic in Meta, if this is the reason it doesn't look like it deserves a ban.

I did open one.  I am trying to figure out if that is the infraction.
Thanks for list I will check to see if he is on it.

I see BTC as the super highway and alt coins as taxis and trucks needed to move transactions.
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May 20, 2019, 08:44:08 PM
 #9

2500 bans since the ban wave started is way too much - don't know where the total number will end up.
The good members are also getting banned due to the mistake of the past and the punishment is very strict imo.

What I understand and want to say is, why not check the records of a user before banning, if he/she is a good member now then issue a warning, otherwise soft ban or hard ban or permaban.

As an example:
cellard who plagiarized 5yrs ago when he was a newbie(child) and got 60 days ban + 1yr sig ban.
At that time he had to learn a lot of things I guess... but for his 1 newbie mistake he has been sentenced for 1yr

It's like you did a crime when you are minor, but there wasn't any lawsuit because you are a minor. It was on hodl for future.
And when you have grown up (adult) there is the lawsuit popped up of the crime you did when you are a child and sentenced you for a long time... also the rep is gone over the past 5yrs which you have earned...

 
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May 20, 2019, 08:50:38 PM
 #10

1. I think that signature bans is right punishment. I don't think we should tolerate copy-pasters up to certain level by giving them warning points.
2. Plagiarism is against forum rules and trust has nothing here.
3. Without strict enforcement this rule is useless more or less, but I think that we should leave it. Permanent bans means permanent, forever, I don't think that people should be allowed to start with new account.
I have different idea - statute of limitations (sorry if I used term incorrectly). If plagiarism was done very long time ago and user didn't repeated this mistake later, I think that he shouldn't be banned. It's same like if you make small crime long time ago, you can't be punished for it after 5 or 10 years.
4. Maybe we should leave this for moderators. Community voice may be used only as recommendation. For example if user who got banned was very useful for community and contributed a lot and many people are asking to unban him, maybe mods could consider.




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May 20, 2019, 09:00:56 PM
Merited by yogg (2)
 #11

At that time he had to learn a lot of things I guess... but for his 1 newbie mistake he has been sentenced for 1yr

Signature ban doesn't prevent the user from taking part in forum discussions.

It's like you did a crime when you are minor, but there wasn't any lawsuit because you are a minor. It was on hodl for future.

You're making it sound as if someone intentionally waited to act.

How about we dispense with analogies and solve the actual problem: copy-pasta spam. Most of what's proposed in this thread is focused on making it easier to get away with it. I can't see how that helps. Moderators can choose how to apply perma/temp/sig bans and if they want to go easy on someone they can.

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May 20, 2019, 09:43:16 PM
 #12

4. It's good idea as for me.
All people, who were known to global mods (like hilarious) were unbanned very fast. And people who are useful for local communities but not in english - still banned for now. That's weird.

 
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May 20, 2019, 10:15:54 PM
 #13

What I don't understand is why we suggest time of commiting plagiarism as an excuse. I totally understand the reason behind pardoning those that have been productive to the forum over the years but we shouldn't used date of commiting this crime as a reason to pardon them, all in the name of they were newbie then. Don't forget the newbies we're banning today for plagiarism are also newbies now.

Since we're discussing alternative to the current punishment I second this
(or deranking to Newbie) would be even better so that they would have to earn their way back.
this will reduce the rate of creation of alts by banned members

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May 20, 2019, 10:33:43 PM
Last edit: May 20, 2019, 10:52:48 PM by 1miau
 #14

1. That's been implemented via signature bans. Global mods can decide if they give a warning (sig ban) or not.
2. No. Spam is not a trust issue.
3. Meh. It's already quite meaningless without proper enforcement.
4. No. Enforcement of forum rules should not be subject to voting.

old members who are contributing good discussions are kicked because they forgot to post a link when BTC was around $200.
I don't think that's true.
Today tyz got banned, he was registered since 2013 and a very constructive poster. I haven't any infomation what he copied exactly but such cases are very irritating. I think he was a Merit source, too. We don't know who's next.  Cheesy
Same applies to bittawm, Acura3600 and cellard or some older cases like tvplus006 and RegulusHr. The list can maybe continued, some of them are mainly active in their local board and we won't notice it here that they are a loss.

About the rest: yes, currently no plagiarism is a forum rule and that's why it's not handled by the cummunity. In my impression for example a vote could help to judge for the global mods if a forum member is useful. They can still decide if they take the poll into account or not. Final decision would be up to them.



10 warning points is bit to much for copy and paste , would say 2 because wit should keep the rules in some way !
A very clear plagiarism post could result in several points. It's just to weight different "plagiarisms" with a different amount of plagiarism points.



Okay to jump on this bandwagon I got an email 5 minutes ago.

Here is a cut and paste of it.

"Bittawm's Bitcointalk Account
Monday, May 20, 2019 2:59 PM

....

Thanks for that, exactly such cases. It's hard for me to imagine that members like him did intentional plagiarism.


A warning system is/was useless for the spambots that copy/paste, use text spinners and used homograph attacks (this last one is no longer possible).
Spambots can be banned right away, I'm not a global moderator but I think there should be a difference to detect if the user is a spambot or not.



1. I think that signature bans is right punishment. I don't think we should tolerate copy-pasters up to certain level by giving them warning points.
In my opinion the general problem is that we merge shitposters and constructive users when we define plagiarism. There are different levels how useful the users are and the results are often the same for spambots and at least some halways decent posters. At least there are sigbans now even if that's still a big privilege.


However the suggestions are just what came into my mind when I thought about how to improve the current situation, I just wrote them down. It's clear to me that changes would take a long time if the forum administration consider them as useful.



Since we're discussing alternative to the current punishment I second this
(or deranking to Newbie) would be even better so that they would have to earn their way back.
this will reduce the rate of creation of alts by banned members
That's also a good solution, instead of a permanent ban we can delete all their Merits and they have to start again from 0. If they are constructive they can prove their value for the forum.

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May 20, 2019, 10:46:54 PM
 #15

Number #1 sounds not right based on core opionion of theymos on plagiarsism: He states that plagiarsim results in permanent ban, immediately when found. So, ten chances of minor plagiarisms or only a single serious plagiarism sounds like a distraction from theymos' stance on plagiarism and related punishment (permanent ban is the only kind of punishment for years; recent months, especially with the current banwave, we have alternatives: temporary ban and signature ban). With Ban Appeals, Admins or global moderators for sure consider about proportion of plagiarised posts per total posts, as well as general contributions/ net-effects of permanent banned users before lifting the ban and give them appropriate alternative (temp ban + signature ban - 1 or 2 year). I think that we already have good solution.


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May 20, 2019, 10:51:42 PM
 #16

At that time he had to learn a lot of things I guess... but for his 1 newbie mistake he has been sentenced for 1yr
Signature ban doesn't prevent the user from taking part in forum discussions.
There is also a 60 days ban from the forum I guess... Maybe he didn't even know what plagiarism is when he was a newbie.
As an example, I didn't know what plagiarism is before (I can't say the exact time when I first learned about it, but it is for sure I learned about it from this forum. Maybe a year or two ago, not sure.)


It's like you did a crime when you are minor, but there wasn't any lawsuit because you are a minor. It was on hodl for future.
You're making it sound as if someone intentionally waited to act.
That's not what I meant.


It's like you did a crime when you are minor, but there wasn't any lawsuit because you are a minor. It was on hodl for future.
How about we dispense with analogies and solve the actual problem: copy-pasta spam.
Sounds good to me if I've understood correctly what you have meant.

In comparison with cellard case,
Bluestackz got banned today for plagiarism he did in June 2016, and he was registered member since June 2015.
Probably he was a full member or senior when he did plagiarism, so for his case a hard ban maybe reasonable


It's like you did a crime when you are minor, but there wasn't any lawsuit because you are a minor. It was on hodl for future.
Most of what's proposed in this thread is focused on making it easier to get away with it. I can't see how that helps. Moderators can choose how to apply perma/temp/sig bans and if they want to go easy on someone they can.
What I wrote was a context of OP, but it was a simplified version of my opinion.
The 4 points are not necessary for various reasons, the moderators (those who are issuing ban) are well qualified to take the right decision.

What I wanted to say exactly is to introduce "warning" for the members who deserve it, otherwise soft ban, hard ban or permaban whichever fits best.

I gave cellard case as an example because he/she deserved a "warning" imo rather than a hard ban (60 days ban + 1yr sig ban).
Tbh I still think the punishment he got is an injustice (just my opinion and it's not necessary others should also think the same way and I may totally be wrong).

 
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May 20, 2019, 10:53:59 PM
Merited by Mr. Big (10), Foxpup (5), Mitchell (5), LoyceV (2)
 #17

Merely forgetting to quote things is not plagiarism, and if we read it that way, you probably won't be banned at all. For it to plagiarism, you have to have the intention of passing the text off as an original work by you. In all of these recent cases (unless we make a mistake, which is rare), it's extremely obvious in context that the person is copy/pasting to make money. Usually they're copy/pasting someone else's post and not adding anything else, in fact, which makes it very clear. Here's the most recent one:
I really like how the project is developed, we hope to get very far and that.Everything goes well and the group of developers keep us posted on everything.
I really like how the project is developed, we hope to get very far and that.Everything goes well and the group of developers keep us posted on everything

All of the recent cases are ~exactly like this, since this is what the bot looks for. (Thank you to the bot designer!)

If at any point you had a mindset where you'd treat the forum like a dumping ground by worthlessly copy/pasting other people's posts in order to make a tiny amount of money, then my default reaction is GTFO, and you have quite an uphill battle to earn even a 2-year sigban instead. No warnings, no statute of limitations.

I know of one case where someone was banned for plagiarism in the recent massacre, but a very careful reading of the context showed that the person actually did just forget to quote, and by "quoting" the post they were expressing an actual point even if it constituted their entire post. This person was unbanned without any sigban, since this isn't plagiarism.

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May 20, 2019, 11:03:21 PM
 #18

I know of one case where someone was banned for plagiarism in the recent massacre, but a very careful reading of the context showed that the person actually did just forget to quote, and by "quoting" the post they were expressing an actual point even if it constituted their entire post. This person was unbanned without any sigban, since this isn't plagiarism.
It's amazing disclose, because I know that case and have been curious what happened after his ban uplifted (without text of signature ban - I thought like you forgot to add such text, something like this). Now, I got the reasons behind. Once again, you have shown that you are very flexible admin, in the way you control forum issues and handle cases of forum users, in reasonable and fair approaches.


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May 20, 2019, 11:28:53 PM
 #19


cellard who plagiarized 5yrs ago when he was a newbie(child) and got 60 days ban + 1yr sig ban.
I don't know who cellard is, or anything about him. I am not commenting about him specifically.

I think the assumption that just because someone is a "newbie" that they are young, new to bitcoin, or don't know what they are talking about is just naive.

All being a "newbie" means is they have recently registered. Some people register here after being involved, or interested in Bitcoin for a long time. Some even have worked for crypto related companies for years before registering here.

Being a new user does not mean they are young. My presumption is everyone here is an adult, or a "young adult" in their mid-teens, and everyone should be treated that way, including holding them responsible for what they do. In both high school and college, students are forced to submit their writing assignments/papers into one or more anti-plagiarism platforms, and the expectation is anyone caught plagiarizing will automatically receive a zero on the assignment. College students are taught that plagiarism is grounds for possible expulsion, even if they have spent tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars in tuition.



1 - I would consider a temporary ban plus a years long signature ban a warning. The temporary ban may be redundant if the plagiarism is from a long time ago, but I do understand the idea this. A 1-2 year signature ban will still allow a person to continue discussing bitcoin and crypto and anything else discussed here.

2 - I would not personally trust anyone who is caught plagiarizing. I would consider this a form of dishonesty. See my response to 1

3 - In some cases I believe in lieu of a temporary ban, a user should be allowed to start "fresh" with a new account, but I believe the person should be required to receive permission to do this. This might be appropriate if someone has a decent history here, but there was a more severe problem with what they did to earn a ban. A person is banned because they were breaking rules that were causing problems.

4 - I don't think winning a popularity contest is an effective way to decide who gets a pass. 

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May 20, 2019, 11:48:15 PM
Merited by dbshck (4)
 #20

In comparison with cellard case,
Bluestackz got banned today for plagiarism he did in June 2016, and he was registered member since June 2015.
Probably he was a full member or senior when he did plagiarism, so for his case a hard ban maybe reasonable

There is not much to add after what theymos said, but I just want to point out that while our attention is often captured by those high-profile cases - Legendary, DT members, etc - the vast majority of banned users are newbies and other low ranks, and that has always been the case.

Or to put another way - the fact that those older users managed to get away with it years ago should be viewed as an accident, not a free pass, and the sig ban option is already a huge privilege for them.

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