The Tattletale

It seems every high school class has at least one: the do-gooder. The teacher's pet who isn't simply satisfied with being better than you, but has to demonstrate that again and again. Not only to you or your classmates, but especially to your teacher. You forgot to do homework, or you didn't bring in your books? You don't have to tell the teacher, because the snitch will. And he'll remind her that she forgot about that pop-quiz too. The tattletale is completely obsessed with do-goodery and judging of other people's actions.

The Pillory

The pillory as tool for punishment for at least a 1000 years, although its use became most popular in the 16th century. The pillories were set up on the market square or village green to display those being punished to a large audience. The audience was heavily involved in the punishment of the confined victim. Not only were they mocked and abused, but they were also target of virtually any projectile at hand: rotten fruit, vegetables, excrement, dead rats, and stones. As society advanced, the use of pillories fell into disuse around the 19th century.

The Chatterbox

Those preceding paragraphs may seem little incoherent, but they serve as examples of group behavior. More precisely, they serve as "bad" examples of the way people interact in a community such as E2. Judging by the chatterbox messages, this place is oftentimes no different:

<ChatterNoder> WARNING. WARNING. GTKY NODE ALERT! DANGER WILL ROBINSON.

<FuNoder> Noder Y: Troll or Newbie?. You be the judge.

<OtherNoder> Why can Noder X get away with crappy nodes like his most recent one?
These catbox messages are usually hardlinked to a substandard node, a poor writeup, or to a noder who still has some things to learn. Unfortunately, some noders interpret this as an invitation to follow the hardlinks and engage in a blind downvoting spree. It is a form of Negative Nodevertising, and it is BAD for several reasons:
  • it creates an atmosphere where noders focus on the negative, rather than the positive contributions to this site. Oftentimes this is followed up by even more negative nodevertising, and things just spiral down from here.
  • it results in unnecessary punishment of a noder. For instance, a new noder submits his first couple of writeups to E2. They're no good, but this is supposed to be a learning experience. Now a seasoned noder nodevertises the newbie's first steps into the noding world in the catbox and as a result he gets slammed deep into the negative XP. Exit yet another disillusioned writer, someone who might have become your most favorite noder.
  • it is poor etiquette. How would you like it if inspect your worst writeups with a magnifying glass, and put them on display to everyone? This is not the way we interact with our peers on E2. Remember that tattletale kid from high school? Don't be a tattletale noder.
  • it is redundant; editors are around 24/7 and they see New writeups. It is their task to keep an eye on whatever is submitted to the database. Editors monitor submissions that are no longer in New Writeups, and writups that were submitted hidden as well. While you are nodevertising some poor writeup, an editor is probably already talking to the noder, or dealing with the writeup in the best possible way.

Everything is not a place where we put noders up on pillories and stone them with downvotes. It is not High School, where tattletales control the actions of others. Respect your fellow noders.

"But I was only trying to help"

Fair enough, sometimes a "poor" writeup slips through. Perhaps it is an older writeup, or the editors were working on other pressing matters. If the writeup is still in the New Writeups nodelet, give it some time. Most likely an editor will look at it shortly.

If it is an older writeup and there is a serious issue with the writeup in question, again don't nodevertise it in the chatterbox, but ask an editor to look things over. Keep in mind E2 has gone a long way to come to the level it is currently at. Editors are still dealing with many older writeups that don't meet our current standards. Please be patient as this is an ongoing process, and not something the editors can "solve" overnight.

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