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Code of conduct

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message 1: by axe (last edited Oct 10, 2012 11:56AM) (new)

axe (akshatk) Besides the actual guidelines listed out in the 'Librarian Manual', there has been an unspoken code of conduct that we as librarians have mostly tried to follow. For most people, a GR librarian is representative of the website itself - regardless of the fact that it is a voluntary position with almost no vetting done.

As such, we should try to behave as semi-decently as possible. I realize that this is a subjective definition, and should be left as such rather than being codified into a blunt instrument of law. Still, behavior such as abusing other reviewers or attacking authors sans reason is not acceptable. I understand that people have bad days, issues which touch a nerve or were attempting wit which went awry - but with the teensy bit of power we have comes a wee bit of responsibility.

I would rather not turn this into a witch-hunt, nor see a day when there is a 'Report' button next to a librarian tag. Instead, I hope we can follow the spirit of the endeavor for which we all have volunteered, out of sheer love for this place.


message 2: by Cait (new)

Cait (tigercait) | 5005 comments If any user, librarian or not, has broken the terms of service then you should flag examples of that user's behavior for GR employees to review. There are no special rules for librarians.


message 3: by axe (last edited Oct 10, 2012 06:23AM) (new)

axe (akshatk) The closest I can find to something apt in the ToS is -

> [You agree that user content doesn't] contains any information or content that we deem to be unlawful, harmful, abusive, racially or ethnically offensive, defamatory, infringing, invasive of personal privacy or publicity rights, harassing, humiliating to other people (publicly or otherwise), libelous, threatening, profane, or otherwise objectionable;

It is nebulous enough that I doubt flagging would do anything, unless it's for severe offenses. Case in point - the 'Stop the GR bullies' fiasco had such language being used by both sides. Not much action was taken in that; indeed it would be almost impossible to strictly monitor and fairly judge when the ToS has been breached.


message 4: by MrsJoseph (new)

MrsJoseph | 501 comments If you have a personal problem with someone, you should contact that person or GR. Anything other than that seems like you are trying to police people's behavior.

GR Librarians are volunteers.


message 5: by Becky (new)

Becky (Beckyofthe19and9) axe wrote: "{...}indeed it would be almost impossible to strictly monitor and fairly judge when the ToS has been breached."

It's not up to you to "monitor" or "judge when the TOS has been breached". If you see something that you think is inappropriate, you can flag it. Then it's up to Goodreads STAFF to determine if there's a violation of the TOS and take action as necessary.

Monitor your own behavior, Axe, since that's the only authority you have and the only behavior you can control. Trying to monitor anyone else's behavior or imply that there's some unwritten "code of conduct" volunteers should be following is both futile and pointless.

As Cait said, there are no special rules for GR Librarians, and it seems that there's about four people I've seen who think there is, including STGRB, and they don't exactly hold any credibility or authority with me. That's hardly a majority.


message 6: by axe (new)

axe (akshatk) I think my point in being lost in translation. Apologies.

> Then it's up to Goodreads STAFF to determine if there's a violation of the TOS and take action as necessary.

My point is that oftentimes they will not be able to respond to it, because of the very nature of ToS itself, and the sheer frequency given how GR has exploded. It was demonstrably so in several incidences in the past.

> since that's the only authority you have and the only behavior you can control.

I agree. I apologize if my post came across as demanding for such, despite my best efforts to not sound like it.

There are no special rules for GR librarians, that goes without saying. That doesn't mean we can't try to behave reasonably. Squabbling with authors and making personal attacks - this is the kind of behavior that no GR user should indulge in. When the user in question is a Librarian, it leaves an even worse taste.

I have no idea who are the four people you mentioned, nor who is STGRB. Nor do I hold any credibility or, heaven forbid, authority. This is simply a request and mayhap an affirmation of what we volunteer Librarians should behave like.

Feel free to ignore it.


message 7: by MrsJoseph (new)

MrsJoseph | 501 comments So, what you are saying is that you want to control the behavior of people you don't know and don't associate with.


message 8: by Becky (new)

Becky (Beckyofthe19and9) axe wrote: "My point is that oftentimes they will not be able to respond to it, because of the very nature of ToS itself, and the sheer frequency given how GR has exploded. It was demonstrably so in several incidences in the past."

Please demonstrate then. I've not seen the kind of attacks you're talking about, nor have I seen Goodreads ever unable to enforce their own TOS.

axe wrote: "I have no idea who are the four people you mentioned, nor who is STGRB. Nor do I hold any credibility or, heaven forbid, authority. This is simply a request and mayhap an affirmation of what we volunteer Librarians should behave like."

Umm... STGRB = Stop The GR Bullies, the site you mentioned in your 2nd comment.


message 9: by axe (new)

axe (akshatk) MrsJoseph wrote: "So, what you are saying is that you want to control the behavior of people you don't know and don't associate with."

No. It is a utter failure of communication on my part, if that is what you got from my message. I do apologize for that.


message 10: by ♡Karlyn P♡ (last edited Oct 10, 2012 01:24PM) (new)

♡Karlyn P♡ (KarLynP) | 18 comments Axe - IMO, people SHOULD NOT ever use the word/term "SHOULD" or SHOULD NOT" (or similar terms) when talking about OTHER PEOPLES actions. Look at most kerfuffles online anywhere, and you can almost always find someone boldly stating what other people SHOULD or SHOULD NOT do. It's a massive no-win trigger word, and about as effective as the saying "Hey, you know what YOUR problem is?!" (Cause no one will ever listen to what comes next, ever)


message 11: by axe (last edited Oct 10, 2012 11:53AM) (new)

axe (akshatk) Becky wrote: "Umm... STGRB = Stop The GR Bullies, the site you mentioned in your 2nd comment.
"


Aah, that makes sense. Somehow I read your comment as STGRB being a singular person.

As for demonstrating this kind of behavior, as I said in my first comment - I would rather not turn this into a witch-hunt. Not to mention the nature of ToS itself ; being a codification, it necessarily doesn't cover subtleties.

I realize that if people haven't seen this behavior themselves, my request comes across as presumptory or worse. In that case, simply ignore it and move on. It's a naive attempt to highlight what I think is important, it doesn't need to ruin anyone's day.


message 12: by axe (new)

axe (akshatk) ♡KarLynP♡ wrote: "Axe - IMO, people SHOULD NOT ever use the word/term "SHOULD" or SHOULD NOT" (or similar terms) when talking about OTHER PEOPLES actions. "

The recursion - it hurts :)

Regardless, I understand your point. On hindsight, I probably should have worded my initial comment better. The problem is that I am still unable to come up with better language for what I had to say. Ah well, tis better to bray in public then be an ass in private. Or the other way - I can never remember.


message 13: by MrsJoseph (new)

MrsJoseph | 501 comments It still seems like you are saying, "I don't like what X, Y, and Z has been doing/saying/reading/shelving and I want them to stop. They should do it my way because its correct."

I'm saying that's wrong. Goodreads has a Terms of Service. Go read it. If you see someone doing something that violates the terms of service, flag it. The GR Staff will handle it. Or not. As they see fit.

What you don't get to do is tell a huge group of people that they are no longer to behave in the manner they please because it bothers you. What would happen is that GR would loose a huge group of free volunteers. And since you don't do a lot of librarian work...I don't think you should try to make decisions for such a huge group that you can not replace alone.


message 14: by ♡Karlyn P♡ (new)

♡Karlyn P♡ (KarLynP) | 18 comments Sorry Axe - just trying to make a point about trigger words. I think they are at the core of most online disagreements. The subject matter, regardless if good or bad, tends to get washed away. I like the idea of a rules of conduct for librarians, btw. But only if they come from GR. Then I can decide to take 'em or leave 'em.


message 15: by Cagne (new)

Cagne (whitekanye) | 22 comments Too much rules. People will behave like they want and if someone breaks some rules he will be dealt with by the law, doesn't matter if someone happens to be a librarian too(a person able to edit book's infos, big deal).

Now, off to behaving as semi-indecently as possible.


message 16: by axe (new)

axe (akshatk) ♡KarLynP♡ wrote: "Sorry Axe - just trying to make a point about trigger words. I think they are at the core of most online disagreements. The subject matter, regardless if good or bad, tends to get washed away. I li..."

No sweat - you were completely correct. These words are mostly unproductive in a discussion. But never using them is probably not a good idea either.

Ah, well. Cheers.


message 17: by rivka, Librarian Moderator (new)

rivka | 32446 comments Mod
Cait wrote: "If any user, librarian or not, has broken the terms of service then you should flag examples of that user's behavior for GR employees to review. There are no special rules for librarians."

Agreed.


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