After reporting an issue in elm/core on Github today, I started looking at other issues in the repo to see if I could contribute. Minutes after I started participating, however, I ran into this message:
Which is weird, because participation on that page by the people who I’d think would have the power to instate a block (the designated members of the “elm” github organization) is very few and far between - so it’s unlikely that this was approved by a human, especially in such a short amount of time. Thus, it’s mostly likely that someone clicked “report” on a post, and Github immediately accepted it and turned that into a block.
I know that’s a normal sequence of events, other platforms work similarly – but they always require at least multiple reports (or a moderator confirmation) before it turns into something like a block. In this case it turned into a block right away, which makes no sense because it was too quick for votes or moderator intervention. Other platforms don’t trust a single report enough to turn it into a block, for obvious reasons (e.g. silencing people you disagree with), so I’m surprised that the Elm org seems to be set up this way.
That’s the long-term issue, which should be worked out even after my short-term issue is resolved. The short term issue is that I’m blocked, and can’t contribute issues to elm (which I’ve done quite a bit since I’ve started!), appeal the block, or anything. Thank goodness for the Elm Discourse, or I wouldn’t know where to go about it. Furthermore, the reason I was given for the block was rather dubious: My response to a user’s first elm bug report was marked as “disruptive”. Huh?
On the plus side, Github at least links you to the exact “content” that was flagged. For completeness, here’s the entirety of that bug report:
As some of you may know, this is just about the antithesis of what elm devs consider a quality bug report (the strictness thereof is well-known and has even been criticized). Nonetheless, I tried to decipher what the user was saying. I concluded they were either
- unaware of the documentation (“explanation”) for the
- criticizing the reason for removing custom operators in 0.19 (which some might paraphrase as “because operators should be self-explanatory”) by pointing out what they perceive as a contradictory example.
Under the principle of “assume good faith”, I started with the first one. So, assuming we agree with their argument that the operator is not self-explanatory (debatable, especially to python users), I said “that’s why it’s in the docs” and quoted the documentation (which explains that it’s the operator for Integer Division) verbatim. I phrased it as a question since I had a feeling there was more to the issue that the user hadn’t specified.
That’s it. That’s the post that got me instabanned from elm. I recognize that I could have been less terse, and I certainly would have (like above) for a bug report with more content. But there is nothing “disruptive” here, even by Elm community standards.
Sorry for the verbose post – just want to make sure this doesn’t happen to other members of the community - especially because many would have simply left if something like this happened to them.