Apr 11, 17 / Tau 17, 01 18:51 UTC

Re: Banning of Members  

When a person is banned, exact reason for banning is between the banned and the moderation team, the general public (I am not going to use the terms user or citizen) only needs to be privy to the fact that that person has been banned for breach in rules and regulations. "They were acting aggressively in the forum, they were threatening to hack the site, they were engaged in illicit activities, etc." None of that is our business, it doesn't concern us because we weren't directly impacted by them being banned, nor were we part of banning them. Nowhere on this site does it say that our mods have to explain why they banned someone to the rest of the populace. The rules, regulations, guidelines, or whatever you wish to call them for posting are posted. If a person goes against these, they are subject to warning, and in extreme cases, loss of their privilege to post in the forums. They are not banned from the site, nor are they banned from taking place in certain activities within the site. They lost their right to disrupt the rest of the populace. Freedom of speech is fine, but personal attacks, threats of violence or cyber terrorism, and other disruptive activities won't be tolerated. Even in countries with freedom of speech, there are things, that if said, can still land you in a lot of trouble: spilling state secrets, threats against a government official, threats to do harm (physical, psychological, or other) to a person or the general populace. Most of the people who have been banned, just from what I have seen for myself, have been warned on several different occasions, on several different threads, by several different moderators/administrators. They were given every chance to abide by the rules posted for the forums, and chose to act the way they did anyways. If what they did to get banned is important to you, back log, do some digging. Many of the posts that led to people getting banned are still up for the general public to see (those that aren't were most likely removed to avoid further problems). Our moderators and administrators are busy enough without having to explain everything they did/do/will do and why they did it every time someone asks. Many people see this as "conformity", it's not. It is simply abiding by a sense of mutual understanding and respecting others. 

Their freedom of speech has not been taken away, merely their ability to post here. The banning was a result of repeated violations of "Terms of use" by the persons in question. Even though we like to call ourselves citizens of the nation of Asgardia, being that Asgardia is still not yet a nation, but a community, we are technically users, at least until such a time comes that Asgardia is officially recognized as an independent nation. Being "users", we are subject to any and all  repercussions to our actions should they go against the posted terms of use/service, as well as not afforded any rights except those directly given to us. There is no right to trial, they don't have to give us a chance to explain ourselves, we are not protected by rights written on a piece of paper, nor should we expect our higher ups to divulge every last little bit of info they might have with us. The fact that our upper management (for that is technically all they are at the moment) is trying to draft a Declaration of Unity and an Asgardian Constitution should show that they have no ill intent. 

They are working to give people the rights that they are asking for, they are trying to eliminate problems within the community before they have a chance to cause lasting harm, most of them are working full work weeks with no pay just to make everyone else here comfortable. But we still have those within our numbers who would bash on them or criticize every little thing they do. At the moment, the only true governing body we have is ourselves. The mods and admins are working for us to give us the community (and hopefully soon, Nation) that we are asking for. Thank them, give them respect, don't criticize them for things that we have no right to in the first place.

I apologize for this turning into such a long winded spiel. I merely want our Admins/Mods/Upper management, whatever you wish to call them, to get the respect they deserve without the heckling of the few who always want more.


  Last edited by:  Paul Miller (Asgardian)  on Apr 11, 17 / Tau 17, 01 18:54 UTC, Total number of edits: 1 time

Apr 11, 17 / Tau 17, 01 19:05 UTC

While I do not disagree with you, @pwmmal, I feel compelled to play devil's advocate.

There are many folks on here who are 'lacking in trust'. It could very well be their reasons for joining were because they come from backgrounds where authority was used to punish dissension. You are asking them to trust authority, when their histories and backgrounds have clearly stated to them that authority cannot be trusted. As a result, your efforts (quite well put, I will add), will not work to your desired end. They will remain skeptical because that is their background and the current administration has done little (but not nothing) to bridge the difference between their life experiences and the actual responsibilities of administration.

Ultimately, one of several events will occur. Either those banned will have an opportunity to say something (because they are given that opportunity or because they create it for themselves) to either support or attack the current administration, or those who have taken a stand against the silence of administration will do something to get themselves banned (because they feel they must be heard), or the administration will take time to build the trust that is necessary to include those who have had bad relationships with authority before.

This is all a communication problem, not an administration or systemic problem. Both sides feel they are not being heard. Administration seems to feel that expressing themselves will merely open up themselves to further attack. Those demanding action are not getting feedback that justifies their feelings. As long as this remains the status quo, the situation will not improve.


Apr 12, 17 / Tau 18, 01 03:42 UTC

^ I second what Phicksur said here.  I would love to add my own words but I can't come up with anything better.

Apr 12, 17 / Tau 18, 01 13:01 UTC

I'm sorry @pwmmal, maybe you like to live into a military State, where one can say "I stated this and you must obey (or be banned)", I don't.

I'm used to try knowing the reasons why something happen, and to think if the prosecutor was right, doing his actions: in my country, if you want to imprison a person, you must do a trial where that person can defend himself, you can't just say "go in jail" and that's all, no evidences, no trial, no defense, no explanations, and all other people have to agree and say nothing.

What I'm saying, now and in all my posts, in all the threads I posted, is the "administration" posted their rules(1), exactly like we was "forum's users", then behave like their rules was unquestionable, like they are the forum's owners.
If Asgardia is going to be "a nation", if we are (or going to be) citizens (casually a matter you're not going into, but which is the very core of all this), things just can't go this way. Or, if they're really going this way, I'm very eager to leave you to confront to this administration and it's behaviors.

I'm still believing we'll be a democratic nation, with a government, hopefully a parliament, hopefully a justice: if things are we'll have to be "owned" by a government which likes to treat us like "users" (while speaking "in our name" like we're citizens), I see something really wrong is going on.

So, maybe I'm "annoying" while asking the (detailed) reasons why another citizen like me have been "imprisoned", blocking his freedom of speech (which is our only freedom at the moment). I'm not asking what they told, I'm asking what they did, as one can't be jailed just saying something but doing nothing.

I'm sorry you're not concerned by the fact that, without any public explanation, nor trial, nor defense, you can be removed by the civil life of Asgardia. If one, in the future, will tell me "I banned @pwmmal as he said "shit" in public" I'll try digging the real reasons of the ban, even if I'm not a judge, even if I'm not a lawyer: I'll do that "as you're a citizen" of our nation... but, if you think we're just users, please, tell me: I'll be much more relaxed (maybe doing something other than stay here) and very less worried, as there are so many forums around the world where I can be "a user" (but a very few new nations where I can be a citizen).

(1) as there are new rules (ref. Code of Conduit) I'll go reading them (better: as I yet read them but a little quickly) and, as a citizen, I'll go commenting them too.


  Last edited by:  Luca Coianiz (Asgardian)  on Apr 12, 17 / Tau 18, 01 13:02 UTC, Total number of edits: 1 time
Reason: grammar

Apr 12, 17 / Tau 18, 01 14:17 UTC

If administration posted a list of banned users (which is largely public knowledge), and the reasons they were banned (preferably with links to evidence), would that be satisfactory, Elwe? I am just trying to see a way to resolve this issue satisfactory to all parties.


Apr 12, 17 / Tau 18, 01 15:58 UTC

I think you're very right, asking to find a way to solve the problems, not letting admins/mods and officials alone on this task.
Let me do some premises:

  1. are the current bans temporary or permanent?
      we still don't know
    IF temporary, how long they last?
      we still don't know

  2. as rules can be really different, are we citizens or users?
      no official stated it, even if Dr. Ashurbeyli wrote letters to others Head of State "in our name": as he is Head of State, it means we're "the State" (part of),
      being "part of a State" means being "citizens", am I wrong?
      IF we are citizens (which implies we're forum's users but not only) we have rights, one of them (not the only one but the most prominent at the moment) is "freedom of speech": blocking our freedom of speech should need a judgement (from a judge, not a "moderator"), so a trial, prosecutor, attorney(s), etc.

So, into this scenery, how can we solve the problem of

  1. keeping the forum secure and viable
  2. letting moderators do their job (without having to explain each of their keypresses)
  3. and preserving "power balance" and citizens' civil rights (ref. freedom of speech)?

As you may think, I'm eager to help, as this is (or will be) my nation also, not some kind of FaceBook or game I'm playing, here, before to go elsewhere(2).

Admins/Mods, by voice of Admins Leader @RebekahBerg, stated (not verbatim) "as there are no (approved) laws, at the moment, we need a way, a reference framework, to make moderation viable and to keep the forum a respectful and nice place where asgardians can confront their ideas" (correct me if I'm wrong, please, Rebekah), so they adopted a document (ref. Forum Posting Rules) which, in time, became the "Code of Conduct" (which I'm studying for later reviewing, while appreciating the effort).
As I told before, Admins/Mods are not "Police", so it can't be asked them to behave as they are. There are also no Courts, for the moment, to judge harmful or wrong citizens' behaviors.

This told, from my humble point of view, and in the hope to help us (citizens) and them (admins/mods, who are citizens too), I think that "temporary bans" (e.g. 1 week, up to 1 month) may be used, as a measure to keep the forum as calm as possible, to teach we citizens the manners to better use the forum here, and to keep our speech rights safe too (as it's a temporary measure). That unless there is a dangerous or harmful behavior, caused by citizens (better if with evidences(1)).
I'm still not satisfied about that but, following the need of "keeping things working", I think we must be pragmatic, and this can be a (temporary) measure which may work.

This if we don't like to create (even temporary) "popular courts", made by lawyers and judges among us, with the right to judge our peers, given the evidences, and to make legal judgements (a lawyer's comment, here, will be greatly appreciated), which I think may be a better and correct way, in the wake of the fact we're citizens and not users.

I'm also aware I'm one of the most criticizing citizens around but, please, keep in count I'm doing it to "uncover the many things are moving (admins' words) behind the scenes", to put transparence where I'm not seeing it, to try having justice where I'm seeing just statements.
As all my words are public, I'm the very first subject of criticism too, and that's right: everyone here can demonstrate I'm wrong, if he/she is able to do it, and I'll agree.

(1) also remember that "system intrusion" or harmful behaviors are civil crimes in the current laws of most countries right now: intruders can be denounced to their current civil authorities, as this is not a game but a "national forum".

(2) one may ask why, if "this is not a game", I'm presenting myself with a nickname only and with an elf-like picture as a profile. That's correct, so this is my statement: I'll reveal (to the public, as Asgardia's databases yet have my real data up to my home's address) my real name and picture after we'll have our Constitution approved, and after it will be explicitly clear we're Asgardia's citizens (with rights), without having to infer it from officials' behavior.


  Last edited by:  Luca Coianiz (Asgardian)  on Apr 12, 17 / Tau 18, 01 16:19 UTC, Total number of edits: 3 times
Reason: note #2

Apr 12, 17 / Tau 18, 01 16:06 UTC

May I say I LOVE your summarizing ability, @petrv?


Apr 12, 17 / Tau 18, 01 23:32 UTC

Well, as EyeR and the others haven't been announced as having their citizenship removed, I expect they are still citizens. While we are on these forums, we are both users and citizens. The forums are a medium for communication, which has separate responsibilities and rights than we have as citizens. If one of us 'breaks the rules as written' then our access to these forums can be withdrawn, without our citizenship being affected.

As far as I know, this is how it works. At least, this is what has been communicated thus far by administration.


Apr 13, 17 / Tau 19, 01 12:51 UTC

Ok, and which is the logic behind having our citizenship intact when you can't express it?
You can be a citizen even when jailed: this doesn't mean your citizenship have been revoked. Only your rights have been.
I repeat: if we're here to build a nation, we can't be treated as (simple) "users": the mentality (and following behavior) must be different.
If, in the meantime we're building our legal system, there are no laws to follow, any "ban" must be temporary (unless a "crime"(1) happened).

Maybe I'm repeating myself but @EyeR and @nihylum de cases are just the occasion to discuss this matter, to verify if our (citizen) behavior is correct, if we're citizens or users, if we have rights or not, if admins/mods are doing well (and, if not, how to help them doing well). I've the feel this is one of the basis on which our nation is going to be built so, maybe, we can avoid focusing on the two (or more) single cases, but we can't just look elsewhere as, doing this, leaves the door opened to the ones which will tell "do this as I told you've to obey": I don't want to take part of such a nation, as I yet have many asking me to "just obey" right now.

About the "rules": they are unilaterally established by a "owner", far different from "laws", which are established by a Parliament of citizens' representatives.
So, now, at the contrary to what have been said (we have an Head of State, so a State constituted by we citizens the Head of State is speaking in behalf (2)), we are (Level 2) "guests in the house of a company" (called NGO Asgardia), so simple users, thus we can be banned at the sole discretion of moderators (allowed by the owner).
By the way, having no rights means having no duties as well: are we here to "just write something" we could write anywhere else? I've no need to trash my time, gifting it to some "owner" I even don't know: this is where the actual policy is leading us.

(1) "crime" not against Asgardian's laws, as we have not, but against current civil laws, which are instead in place: system intrusion, breach, subversion is a civil crime in most places, sure in Vienna.
(2) https://asgardia.space/storage/docs/To_President_of_Germany_WEB.pdf, look at what's written under the sign.


  Last edited by:  Luca Coianiz (Asgardian)  on Apr 13, 17 / Tau 19, 01 13:06 UTC, Total number of edits: 1 time
Reason: last paragraph addition

Apr 13, 17 / Tau 19, 01 22:27 UTC

Well, we were promised answers to all those question by the end of May.  So we just have to wait and see.

Apr 20, 17 / Tau 26, 01 01:38 UTC

@Elwe ❤️👏🙌👍👍❤️ Totally agree!

Apr 24, 17 / Gem 02, 01 10:06 UTC

Well, some views and wishes should be discussed,

in general, banning in the scenario of asgardia is actually an act of protection. Its main intention is to prevent further damage to the community and it is used carefully by Asgardia Civic. A ban means that people do not have longer access to the virtual environments (asgardia.space) of Asgardia, a ban does not mean that those people are no longer citizens of Asgardia, it's all about access and it is in the cases where the ban was done a fair action. People have to follow the rules, that is a requirement that should never be discussed.

A public ban list would be impossible, at least for the reason of trackability. If I would have a ban list that covers any ban, I would have a parseable entity to observe when a bot account has been turned inoperable, think this idea to the end and you'll see a potential automation scope for spam bots. At the other side (the human side), a ban list that serves account names and probably real names or references to real names later would be a big privacy issue. A pillory was never and will never be a good choice.

From the citizen point of view. All bans shouldn't be done in the public and the banned state shouldn't be expressed publicly. Violations on citizen level is a thing that might be logged in a public citizen file in the future, but we are far away from having such a registry and we actually do act on Asgardia NGO environments first, regulated by rules that were made to guarantee a peaceful environment.

Apr 24, 17 / Gem 02, 01 15:59 UTC

  As we're trying to build a nation, I think is correct to discuss the implications of the current rules and the (future) laws about a ban.

  The very first thing we should talk about is the BIG difference from "user" and "citizen", in general but for Asgardia and it's services in particular.

  After talking for a while, with many threads, the current situation have been (IMHO) correctly summarized by @petrv here:

 "(...) There is any Asgardian law (yet)
 We all are users of forum,  owned by Dr. Ashurbeyli corporation. To became such users, we had to  pass him some of our credentials. Without any guarantee it will not be  misused. Ofc we share some idea (most of us, I hope) and small part of  us (tens to hundreds out of 176.806 to date registered people) actively  discussing here on the forum.
 But we know nothing about plans, time schedule, real people behind the scene.(...)"

 Many of us, me as first, started from the assumption, later revealed (implicitly) wrong, we was citizens ("as Dr. Ashurbeyli was writing to others Head of State, as our Head of Nation, so there was a nation, so we was citizens of that nation he was writing in behalf").
  Being citizens of Asgardia would mean we have rights even into Asgardia, not only into our current countries thus, if some rights had to be blocked (e.g. freedom of speech right) there would be the need of a trial, with a prosecutor, an attorney, trial's records and a judgement (which may also be not final).
  As "it seems" we are no citizens but users (no one stated the former or the latter, even if evidences leads to think the latter is true), there is nothing one can do, if administrators, choosen by the management, decide to ban a user: this is a behavior common to the many websites into Internet, where the ownership unilaterally decide to terminate the user account, so the "freedom of speech" of that user into their propriety (worth noting that this kind of "freedom" is lend, into a privately owning site, so they can decide, at whichever time, for whatever reason, and even without a particular reason, to stop this).
  A user can, obviously, make a trial in the country of the website's owners, to try enforcing his/her rights of speech but, as the website is private, the ownership's rights are usually stronger than the individual's ones.
  The only thing on which I'm thinking about, at now, is the Head of Nation's assumptions about us: we have no words, by him, if we are users or citizens, as he called us "asgardians" all the time.

  So, yes, we're users, kind of "registered guests" here into the forum and into Asgardia as a whole, we then must accept all the rules the ownership think are right for "Asgardia", we also must accept their bans without their need to explain why, without the right to defend ourselves, as we are no citizens: "take it or leave it".

  When (if) we'll be citizens, I think we'll (possibly) have rights, so laws which poses duties and even defend us. One of our rights is to "know why" one of us is banned, jailed, or anything other, instead to see him/her "just disappearing from the public scene": the trials may be private, but the judgements must (should?) be public viewable from a registry. Nothing which the current management is forced to do at now, as this is not a State (it's a nation) but a private ownership.

A public ban list would be impossible, at least for the reason of trackability. If I would have a ban list that covers any ban, I would have a parseable entity to observe when a bot account has been turned inoperable, think this idea to the end and you'll see a potential automation scope for spam bots.

  I'm not sure what you mean, about "potential automation scope for spam bots": what those spam-bots should do with user-IDs (having no e-mail)?
  Second consideration: are "bot account", other than recognized AIs (which we're not having, as far as I know, at the moment), allowed to register to Asgardia?

On the other side (the human side), a list of ban on account names and probably real names or references to real names later would be a big matter of privacy. A pill has never been and will never be a good choice.

 I'm seeing no privacy problem in the sentence
"Elwe Thor have been banned 'cause of shouting too loudly at night (22:00 - 08:00 satellite time) in Asgardia's main square"
  nor in the following sentence too
"Capt.n Hook, which is an Elwe Thor's fraudolent account by evidences (link to evidences), have been banned as multiple accounts are not allowed into Asgardia"
  both references are to my main (and only :-)) account name, not real name, which is public and readable into every of my posts.
  This said, and even if we asked for the "judgement" to be published, I'm also agreeing all judgements should be "made available" to public inquiry, not necessarily "published" into a forum's section, so that there should be more transparency on the legal justice's operation.
  But this is a matter of the future: we're users, now.

welcome back, @nihylum. :-)

  Last edited by:  Luca Coianiz (Asgardian)  on Apr 24, 17 / Gem 02, 01 16:01 UTC, Total number of edits: 1 time
Reason: nihylum account's name correction

Apr 24, 17 / Gem 02, 01 17:25 UTC

Well, at first show me a forum that serves a ban list.

Then, to me: everything that can decrease reputation should be considered as protectable by privacy protection.

Apr 24, 17 / Gem 02, 01 18:08 UTC

When I ran a forums I did have a list of persons banned (if they had posts, bot accounts didn't end up having posts that weren't spam), the duration of the ban, and the cause for the ban (like, "violation of terms of service 1.A." or the like). Admittedly, I ran my forums as an absolute benevolent dictatorship and made that clear from the beginning. When someone complained about 'democracy' and 'rights of the user' I'd just point out it was never a democracy to begin with and offered them the choice to remain by the rules as stated or stop posting by their own decision. 

When their ban duration was up, their name was purged from the ban list. Very rarely did someone earn a permanent ban, but their names were on the list as well.