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  Discussion regarding past and probable political abuse of PO

+ 1 like - 1 dislike

Since dimension10 started censoring temporarily hid part of the discussion in http://www.physicsoverflow.org/28188/ for being irrelevant to the topic I create here a new topic to make sure that my contribution is relevant. But it refers to the discussion there. 

It is very easy to abuse PO in its present form, and it has happened in a very serious way.

@RonMaimon wrote here:

I became a pure politician because I was not willing to contribute science to your site. You simply don't deserve my material, it is good stuff, and I am still not willing to give it to you. I stopped cold turkey on the day I saw you turn on VK

In former times, when you still were at SE-Physics you knew very well that their politics wasn't what you now demand of PO but you contributed generously while you were there. Now you are treating PO much worse than you treated SE, because you don't contribute even though the site was (and still is) ruled according to the rules made by you.

I wrote and forced through the user rights against Dilaton's wishes

But you have betrayed PO; what you contributed here on PO is not what you had promised. 

The reviews section was created upon your suggestion, almost exactly according to the rules you had suggested, and you had promised

I promise to cogently sincerely negatively referee ~1 paper a day, 

So polarkernel spent many weeks to create the necessary software for it; so far almost in vain.

I had counted on you regarding providing regular reviews, started to look for papers deserving a positive or negative review, and asked them to be imported, which they were. You didn't make your promise true. Worse, I had imagined at that time that 'sincerely negatively' meant pointing out mistakes at the level of professional reviews. But you taught me a different meaning in your review of Dynin's work (see my comments here).

For fear of worse you didn't contribute scientifically while the site was ruled according to your rules. There is little incentive to keep these extremely liberal rules to accommodate you, as PO already lost you as a scientific contributor, and by losing you we wouldn't lose anything but your politics (that in the past has been detrimental to PO).

asked Mar 19, 2015 in Conflict Resolution by Arnold Neumaier (15,787 points) [ revision history ]
recategorized Apr 2, 2015 by dimension10
Most voted comments show all comments

Regarding "dimension10 started censoring...", I didn't hide or edit a single comment after Dilaton reshowed everything, so saying that your comments there feel threatened is ridiculous. Also, I made my reasons for the deletion rather clear, it was not really because the discussion was off-topic (I did feel so, and I still do, but I'm not foolish to do that unilaterally now), but because I knew that Dilaton would object to that, and do selective reshowing, and prove his political motivations.

But on hindsight, I agree my action was idiotic, and that it doesn't really serve its purpose either, because I suppose the selective reshowing was natural (although his later reaction of accusing me of selective deletion was simply idiotic, the deletion wasn't selective at all)

Nevertheless, thanks for allocating a separate thread for this discussion.

@dimension10: Please, please, I ask you, as Arnold and Dilaton did, don't do such things. It is scary for a user, I thought you went to the dark side. Your motivation is no good and also unimportant, just don't do this kind of stuff. This shenaningan is abusive and it only looks harmless to a moderator because the slight amount of extra power means that the moderator perspective is totally warped.

There is no link for opening the image.

Right-click > View image/Open image in new tab, or drag the image to the new tab icon on your browser.

Thanks. I didn't know this.

Most recent comments show all comments

@Dilaton Well it depends, if he means by the word "PO", the site or the community... It doesn't matter anyway, and your edit worked.

 I made my reasons for the deletion rather clear, it was not really because the discussion was off-topic

 There is no way to guess that what you wrote here

I have deleted irrelevant tangential comments on people's personalities and things like "who has the authority to blablabla"  [...] I edited the off-topic stuff out.

was meant to say that it was ''not really because the discussion was off-topic'', as you claim here. 

By the way, the image in that post is displayed by my browser [Chromium, Version 37.0.2062.120 Ubuntu 12.04 (281580) (64-bit)] as a 3mm wide object not carrying any useful information. Maybe @polarkernel can fix the bug.

1 Answer

+ 2 like - 0 dislike

The liberal rules are not for me, they're for everyone. Can't you see how easy it is for moderation to turn annoying? I mean, it's not like it doesn't happen here. Everyone agreed on this stuff at the start, because they weren't in a powerful position.

The reviews section is not a failure--- your own contributions there are the best things on the site. I am no longer afraid of the people here, but since VK was harassed, I figured this site was just like all the rest, and just went off to do other things. I only came back when the VK thing blew up. It's not like I'm the only person here, my actions and opinion are just not so important.

The promise of 1 review a day was probably wrong, even with full effort, it is not clear that I can do this correctly. I'll give it a shot, I'll do one properly tonight. The idea was that I see one paper a day which is easy to refute, so I could do a negative review. But after the Dynin business, obviously, negative reviews are tricky--- they can be far too rude, and if you make a mistake in a techincal detail (as I did in Dynin's review) it can be extremely detrimental to the site. We have to be careful here, to make sure that mistaken nonsense is caught and fixed (I don't know why I didn't pay attention to the downvotes on my review).  Look, I know that I can easily make a serious mistake while refereeing, even when the basic principle of the criticism is valid. You probably know how difficult it is to write a negative review that isn't completely hostile and unforgiving, you just wrote some yourself. I saw a paper on Dirac equation solutions which doesn't work recently for reasons I thought I identified, but of course, to write a review now, I'll have to double and triple check. A positive review is harder. A good positive review I think I could write is for the paper of Hassan and Rosen on Higgs mechanism for gravity, this is sorely needed (in addition to the backlog stuff regarding Hairer's stuff, of course).

I'm personally committed to this site now, because it is really still open, and perhaps will stay that way. I just didn't believe it before. In the case of Dynin, the issue is more or less fixed now, thanks to you, but I should have fixed it earlier--- I'm really sorry. I didn't pay close attention to the formalism, and just reconstructed backwards from the creation/annihilation construction (which I understood, and clearly wrong kinematics) figuring he must have done something screwy. The screwy thing was in having no deformation of the vacuum through the interactions, by normal ordering, not the nonsense I wrote. Again, I'm really sorry, but this is what self-correcting mechanisms are for.

answered Mar 19, 2015 by Ron Maimon (7,730 points) [ revision history ]

+1 for the second half. By the way, I had spent more than 15 hours on my Dynin review, 3 or 4 to figure out in some detail what he claimed doing, and the remaining to find out where he made his essential mistakes.

You had also promised a glowing review of Hairer's work, which I'd love to read. I would be happy if you'd write two professional reviews a week. 

Thank Arnold, I'll try--- it takes many hours, as you said. I spent about an hour on the Dynin review, because I saw the kinematics was wrong, but obviously I should have spent more time to sort out the Hamiltonian. I did promise that Hairer review, the key insightful thing I thought would be to explicitly relate it to physicist's OPE and  general Stochastic Quantization.

(That is why I am against "voting without reviewing" in the Review section.)

Rules are needed everywhere you turn to. One can make them this way or that way, they'll always be annoying for some, and they are never good enough to prevent misuse. 

The really bad thing is if the rules turn out to be made in such a way that they annoy those who are needed to make the site flourish. No community can persist if its rules turn against their most constructive people just because they are not perfect.

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