Religious spam on planet.mozilla.org

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Laurens Holst

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Apr 7, 2007, 8:45:50 AM4/7/07
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Um,

WTF?

http://benjamin.smedbergs.us/blog/2007-04-06/holy-is-god-holy-and-strong-holy-immortal-one-have-mercy-on-us/

I’m really not waiting for this religious spam to appear in my RSS reader.

Please add back some form of filtering, or make some rules so that
mozilla bloggers at least try to make their posts relevant.


~Grauw

--
Ushiko-san! Kimi wa doushite, Ushiko-san nan da!!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Laurens Holst, student, university of Utrecht, the Netherlands.
Website: www.grauw.nl. Backbase employee; www.backbase.com.

Jeff Walden

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Apr 7, 2007, 11:11:37 AM4/7/07
to Laurens Holst
Good grief.

It's one post. Marking it as read it in your feed reader isn't difficult. It's not a common occurrence. It includes no (primarily non-stylistic) exhortations to some morality (not that that should be considered in determining the worth of a blog post for a planet). You're totally free to remain an atheist, an agnostic, a Protestant, a scholar of divine bovinity, or whatever you want to be after having read it.

I suspect such a vitriolic reaction (from you or from anyone else) would not have occurred had the post been one in support of atheism, but there should be no difference in objectionableness between the two, all else equal.

I probably just fed a flame war. I intend not to post in this thread again unless some form of reasonable, productive discussion emerges involving p.m.o mods.

Jeff

P.S. -- This is not to say that were I to consider making such a post, I would make it planet-readable; I suspect I would not. The difference is one of top-down enforcement vs. self-restraint, and the former should be a last resort for extreme situations.

Laurens Holst

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Apr 7, 2007, 11:50:27 AM4/7/07
to
Maybe I went a bit overboard with calling it ‘spam’. It’s not
constructive nor nice to Benjamin Smedberg. Sorry for that.

Jeff Walden schreef:


> Good grief.
>
> It's one post. Marking it as read it in your feed reader isn't
> difficult. It's not a common occurrence. It includes no (primarily
> non-stylistic) exhortations to some morality (not that that should be
> considered in determining the worth of a blog post for a planet).
> You're totally free to remain an atheist, an agnostic, a Protestant, a
> scholar of divine bovinity, or whatever you want to be after having read
> it.

Yes, it’s easy to skip. However it does not belong there, it’s thrown
into my face without any explanation as to what it is or why it’s posted
and would be even remotely interesting to me or any other reader of
Planet Mozilla. Commenting is disabled as well. When I subscribe to a
newspaper I expect to receive news and background stories. If I wanted
religious texts, I’d subscribe to a religious magazine. I do consider
Planet Mozilla a newspaper about Mozilla, and not religion.

I am not against posts that are off-topic per se, and neither do I mind
topics being related to religion (Gervase Markham has a number of
interesting posts about issues connected to christianity in the past),
but "Holy is God! Holy and strong! Holy Immortal One, have mercy on us."
followed by more worship of God’s holiness is just totally out of place
on p.m.o.

> I suspect such a vitriolic reaction (from you or from anyone else) would
> not have occurred had the post been one in support of atheism, but there
> should be no difference in objectionableness between the two, all else
> equal.

I indeed wouldn’t have responded so (logically, that doesn’t make me a
hypocrite), but I wouldn’t argue with anyone who objected against such a
post.

And I most certainly would expect a post saying ‘There is no god.’ (with
comments disabled, also) would not be well-received either.

Maybe as an experiment I should create a blog about the Dutch
localisation work and interleave my on-topic posts with posts about
Viagra products and porn sites, and let that be published on Planet Mozilla.

> I probably just fed a flame war. I intend not to post in this thread
> again unless some form of reasonable, productive discussion emerges
> involving p.m.o mods.

I hope so.

> P.S. -- This is not to say that were I to consider making such a post, I
> would make it planet-readable; I suspect I would not. The difference is
> one of top-down enforcement vs. self-restraint, and the former should be
> a last resort for extreme situations.

That sounds like a very sensible policy.

I hope some guidelines can be made, and people are encouraged to make
mozilla-specific categories so they can decide on a post-by-post basis
what is appropriate. Note that the blog in question does have such a
category, so this was apparantly explicitly posted to Planet Mozilla.

Chris Ilias

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Apr 7, 2007, 12:27:19 PM4/7/07
to
On 07/04/2007 11:50 AM, _Laurens Holst_ spoke thusly:

> Yes, it’s easy to skip. However it does not belong there, it’s thrown
> into my face without any explanation as to what it is or why it’s posted
> and would be even remotely interesting to me or any other reader of
> Planet Mozilla.

As previously discussed in this newsgroup[1], Planet Mozilla has a
medium term plan of offering "at least two feeds at Planet Mozilla. One
feed will be inclusive of whatever content community members offer. A
second feed will offer, by methods still to be determined, only or
mostly Mozilla-related content."[2]

[1]<http://groups.google.com/group/mozilla.governance/browse_frm/thread/fcb35ccf5b7c2d9d>
[2]<http://blog.mozilla.com/planet/2007/03/09/planet-mozilla-plan-and-policy-proposals/>
--
Chris Ilias <http://ilias.ca>
List-owner: support-firefox, support-thunderbird
mozilla.test.multimedia moderator
(Please do not email me tech support questions)

Mike Beltzner

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Apr 7, 2007, 1:37:49 PM4/7/07
to Jeff Walden, gover...@lists.mozilla.org
On 7-Apr-07, at 11:11 AM, Jeff Walden wrote:

> Good grief.
>
> It's one post. Marking it as read it in your feed reader isn't
> difficult. It's not a common

FWIW, I agree with Jeff wholeheartedly. Benjamin has decided to
syndicate all his blog posts to planet (something I don't personally
do) and we have decided (as readers of planet) that we're interested
in what Benjamin has to say. We're not necessarily required to agree
with what he has to say, nor must we like it. Freedom of speech runs
both ways. We might think more or less of Benjamin for what he chose
to syndicate to planet - that's between the reader and him, really.
But we must afford him the choice and opportunity to syndicate what
he wants.

> occurrence. It includes no (primarily non-stylistic) exhortations
> to some morality (not that that should be considered in determining
> the worth of a blog post for a planet). You're totally free to
> remain an atheist, an agnostic, a Protestant, a scholar of divine
> bovinity, or whatever you want to be after having read it.
>
> I suspect such a vitriolic reaction (from you or from anyone else)
> would not have occurred had the post been one in support of
> atheism, but there should be no difference in objectionableness
> between the two, all else equal.

Absolutely right. I don't share Benjamin's beliefs, but I will defend
to the end his right to hold those beliefs, just as I hope he would
do for me. I also hope to learn more about Benjamin as a person
through understanding more about his beliefs.

> I probably just fed a flame war. I intend not to post in this
> thread again unless some form of reasonable, productive discussion
> emerges involving p.m.o mods.

Maybe you did. Maybe I am, too. :)

I was happy to see Chris mention the work-only feed - I hope that's
coming along, as I'm sure that many people are interested in that.
(as an aside, I do think that some anti-spam guidelines are needed to
avoid shilling and linkspamming, but am not exactly sure what those
would look like)

> Jeff
>
> P.S. -- This is not to say that were I to consider making such a
> post, I would make it planet-readable; I suspect I would not. The
> difference is one of top-down enforcement vs. self-restraint, and
> the former should be a last resort for extreme situations.

Preach it, brother Walden. ;)

Oh, and, Happy Easter / Passover to those celebrating / observing
this weekend.

cheers,
mike

Robert Kaiser

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Apr 7, 2007, 2:06:33 PM4/7/07
to
Laurens Holst schrieb:

> Yes, it’s easy to skip. However it does not belong there, it’s thrown
> into my face without any explanation as to what it is or why it’s posted
> and would be even remotely interesting to me or any other reader of
> Planet Mozilla. Commenting is disabled as well. When I subscribe to a
> newspaper I expect to receive news and background stories. If I wanted
> religious texts, I’d subscribe to a religious magazine. I do consider
> Planet Mozilla a newspaper about Mozilla, and not religion.

As Chris already pointed out, you probably misunderstand what Planet
Mozilla in its current form is meant to be. This is no Mozilla news
magazine, if you want that, subscribe to MozillaZine. Planet Mozilla is
a collection of personal blogs of Mozilla community members. It
intentionally is not limited to Mozilla-related posts. We had long
discussions about that, and it's planned to add a separate such
page/site/feed in the future, as Chris also pointed out. This Planet
Mozilla we have here is intentionally picturing community members' posts
in their full perspective and broad distribution of topics and beliefs
(OK, almost-full, as we're limiting to English language, basically).

We are a colorful, diverse community with different interests and
beliefs that go well beyond Mozilla development. If you want a look into
this whole community, Planet Mozilla is right for you.
If you want to put blinkers on and see only a part of this community,
you're in the wrong place. MozillaZine is the choice if you want a
Mozilla development magazine. A future brother/sister page/site/feed to
Planet Mozilla will be the choice if you want Mozilla-related blog posts
only. No censoring on Planet Mozilla though. We (as in "the community")
have been through that discussion and decided against that.

Robert Kaiser

Nelson Bolyard

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Apr 7, 2007, 3:24:42 PM4/7/07
to
Jeff Walden wrote:
> Good grief.
>
> It's one post. Marking it as read it in your feed reader isn't
> difficult. It's not a common occurrence. It includes no (primarily
> non-stylistic) exhortations to some morality (not that that should be
> considered in determining the worth of a blog post for a planet).
> You're totally free to remain an atheist, an agnostic, a Protestant,
> a scholar of divine bovinity,

"Holy Cow, Batman!" said the Robbinical scholar.

(Sorry, couldn't resist that pun :) Back to the serious subject.

Michael Lefevre

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Apr 7, 2007, 5:47:26 PM4/7/07
to
On 2007-04-07, Robert Kaiser <ka...@kairo.at> wrote:
[snip]

>
> As Chris already pointed out, you probably misunderstand what Planet
> Mozilla in its current form is meant to be. This is no Mozilla news
> magazine, if you want that, subscribe to MozillaZine. Planet Mozilla is
> a collection of personal blogs of Mozilla community members. It
> intentionally is not limited to Mozilla-related posts. We had long
> discussions about that, and it's planned to add a separate such
> page/site/feed in the future, as Chris also pointed out.
[...]

> No censoring on Planet Mozilla though. We (as in "the community")
> have been through that discussion and decided against that.

But that discussion happened only in the newsgroup, and I'm sure there are
lots of people that read p.m.o. who didn't read that discussion and so
don't know what's going on.

P.m.o. only really changed to its current unfiltered form a few weeks ago.
Asa posted something very brief (aimed at bloggers rather than readers)
about the removal of filters, but it might be good to say something
about the changes to p.m.o. on the planet blog for those that didn't
follow the long newsgroup discussion?

I'm not a big fan of religion either, but I think I probably have more of
an understanding of posts about that than of stuff about maple leaves and
senators or whatever Chris is talking about... some sort of sports game, I
suppose ;P

--
Michael

pascal

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Apr 7, 2007, 6:33:42 PM4/7/07
to
Robert Kaiser a écrit :

I am pretty sure that we have way more Mozilla people interested in sex
than religion. So does it mean that we can put posts about sex, as long
as it is in English, and that they will be syndicated on
planet.mozilla.org just like Benjamin's posts? It would be fun to see
blog posts on p.m.o like 'cunnilingus tutorial' or "how being a Mozilla
developer helped me to get laid with the geeky girl next door" wouldn't
it ? ;)

Pascal

Terry

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Apr 7, 2007, 6:34:39 PM4/7/07
to
On 4/7/2007 2:47 PM On a whim, Michael Lefevre pounded out on the keyboard

"I'm not a big fan of religion either" !!! You and Jesus have
something in common....

Proverbs 17:28

--
Terry
Anti-spam measures are included in my email address.
Delete NOSPAM from the email address after clicking Reply.

Justin Dolske

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Apr 7, 2007, 9:32:37 PM4/7/07
to
pascal wrote:

> I am pretty sure that we have way more Mozilla people interested in sex
> than religion. So does it mean that we can put posts about sex, as long
> as it is in English, and that they will be syndicated on
> planet.mozilla.org just like Benjamin's posts?

I think the entire subject of "what if someone blogs about ____ on PMO?"
is a ginormous rat-hole that we ought to avoid. I think it's much better
to err on the side of openness, while the "new" PMO finds its voice, and
avoid the subject of prior-restraint unless there's a concrete problem.

Justin

Ken Saunders

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Apr 7, 2007, 10:43:32 PM4/7/07
to
I have been following this all day and isn't it ironic that everyone
has the right to voice their opinions on this topic. I don't see the
difference between that and the right that a person has to express
themselves in whatever way that they choose as long as it isn't
harmful to Mozilla's reputation.

Two days ago I deleted a post on Spread Firefox which a man had posted
of himself having anal sex with someone and shots of his penis. Should
I have left it because that's how that person expresses themselves?
No, because we have the right to control the content that represents
Mozilla.

There's an obvious difference between someone's opinion or belief and
outright inappropriate material. I'm a Christian myself but I didn't
care for the post. I didn't even have to read the whole thing to know
that it was something that I didn't like so I chose to move on.

Perhaps I'm reading Mozilla's mission statement wrong. I thought that
promoting "choice" was a keyword in the sentence that wasn't just
about choosing software.

Ken Saunders

pascal chevrel

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Apr 8, 2007, 6:35:23 AM4/8/07
to
Le 08/04/2007 03:32, Justin Dolske a ecrit :


Well, obviously there is a concrete problem otherwise we wouldn't be
debating here ;)

Pascal

Peter Lairo

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Apr 8, 2007, 9:01:05 AM4/8/07
to
Laurens Holst said on 07.04.2007 14:45:
> WTF?
>
> http://benjamin.smedbergs.us/blog/2007-04-06/holy-is-god-holy-and-strong-holy-immortal-one-have-mercy-on-us/

Yeah, the post struck me as poorly introduced, and as religious
propaganda blurted out at my face. I'm an atheist. This was a rare
occurrence. I moved on to the next post.

BTW: These are pretty funny (and insightful):
http://www.venganza.org/about/open-letter/
http://www.jhuger.com/kisshank.php
--
Regards,

Peter Lairo

The browser you can trust: www.GetFirefox.com
Reclaim Your Inbox: www.GetThunderbird.com

Michael Lefevre

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Apr 8, 2007, 10:44:26 AM4/8/07
to

So I guess it's been decided that blogging about religion (or sex,
politics, space travel, cats or even ice hockey) is generally not a
concrete problem, as long as it's in English. Who decides when something
is a concrete problem though? I guess the new planet team?

--
Michael

Boris Zbarsky

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Apr 8, 2007, 11:32:16 AM4/8/07
to
Laurens Holst wrote:
> but "Holy is God! Holy and strong! Holy Immortal One, have mercy on us."
> followed by more worship of God’s holiness is just totally out of place
> on p.m.o.

I find it interesting that you assumed that this is a religious post. I saw it
as a musical post (this being a hymn and all). Then again, maybe that's because
I know Benjamin has a certain interest in music in general and in sacred music
in particular... and that this is a somewhat integral part of his personality.
People who play video games for fun can blog about a new video game and this is
acceptable on Planet Mozilla; why can't people who play music for fun blog about
a new piece of music?

> And I most certainly would expect a post saying ‘There is no god.’ (with
> comments disabled, also) would not be well-received either.

How would you feel about quoting Nietzsche about God being dead? I can see how
some people would react to that as being identical to the statement "There is no
god", while those who are somewhat better educated would realize the social and
historical context and perhaps be led to have an interesting thought or two.

-Boris

P.S. I'd like to put in a word here for the non-Christian non-atheists who are
somewhat interested in things that are not part of their religion and found the
reading the post led them to do fascinating. Not to mention learning a little
more Greek from it.


Boris Zbarsky

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Apr 8, 2007, 11:46:18 AM4/8/07
to
Boris Zbarsky wrote:
> I find it interesting that you assumed that this is a religious post. I
> saw it as a musical post (this being a hymn and all).

One other thing. If the complaint is that there was no explanation that this is
a hymn, or that in some other way there was not enough introduction (which
complaint I've seen voiced in this thread)... I would say "tough; do some Googling."

-Boris

Gijs Kruitbosch

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Apr 8, 2007, 6:01:48 PM4/8/07
to
On Apr 7, 2:45 pm, Laurens Holst <lho...@students.cs.uu.nl> wrote:
> Um,
>
> WTF?
>
> http://benjamin.smedbergs.us/blog/2007-04-06/holy-is-god-holy-and-str...
>
> <snip>


I've taken the liberty to edit the subject slightly based on the last
few posts by Boris, Laurens' apology for calling it spam and what I
know of Benjamin as a person (which admittedly isn't all that much,
but correlates strongly to what Boris has already written).

I think that the very existence of this newsgroup thread and some of
the posts in it means that readers have already learned something
about Mozilla as a community and Benjamin as a (comparatively
prominent) member of the same. If it hadn't been for Ben's post and
this newsgroup topic (thanks Laurens), I wouldn't have known that
Boris takes an interest in Greek and/or Nietzsche, or that Mike
Beltzner likes to quote Voltaire (when appropriate). You're not going
to stop people from being different by stopping them from letting the
community know about that - all you'll do is stifle (social)
interaction between the people involved, which can never be good for a
community project, as far as I can tell.

As for public responsibility, perhaps Planet should have a disclaimer
that none of the contents are officially affiliated/endorsed with/by
Mozilla. I'll go and file a bug on that if it hasn't been done
already. Other than that, I don't see a problem with people posting
their own opinion - that was one of the reasons there was a change in
management: so there'd be less (perceived) censorship, and more
(personal) interaction.

~ Gijs


Michael Lefevre

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Apr 8, 2007, 7:28:19 PM4/8/07
to
On 2007-04-08, Robert Accettura <rob...@accettura.com> wrote:
[snip]
> Politics may be it's own issue as planet is hosted on mozilla.org a
> non-profit. I'm not sure what the laws are regarding non-profits and
> syndicating political natured blog posts... but I think we should dig
> into that and figure it out.

IANAL, but I do work for another 501(c)(3) (US non-profit, and I think the
Foundation is the same category of public charity), and I don't imagine it
would be a problem. I don't think hosting the odd political comment on
planet could ever be considered a "substantial part" of the Foundation's
activities, so the only thing that would be a problem is if someone was
actually campaigning for (or against) a specific candidate for public
office in the US.

[rest of post snipped]

Some good explanations and responses in this thread, thanks. This stuff,
along with the previous stuff that made the planet blog (which is rather
hard to get to - unless I missed a link somewhere on
http://blog.mozilla.com/planet it only lists the most recent post history
unless you look at the feed) should go on a web page somewhere (or did it
already?)

--
Michael

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