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- Mirriam-Webster defines “passive aggressive” as the following:
- “Definition of passive-aggressive: being, marked by, or displaying behavior characterized by the expression of negative feelings, resentment, and aggression in an unassertive passive way (as through procrastination and stubbornness)”
- Here are a handful of instances, as requested:
- First and foremost, we would like to re-address your survey. We understand you felt entitled to do this, but as you are a member of the site, and not staff, we stand by the fact that for you to comb our userbase for their opinions on our duty, unprompted, was entirely inappropriate. A survey is not an idea we were/are ever against, and we’d like to reiterate that we would have been more than happy to conduct an identical survey had we ever been directly asked (no staff member was ever pinged, GM’d, nor did we see the suggestion on the Goatlings forums before the creation of said survey. As stated below: the Patron Discord was not a secure line to staff, especially if they were not directly contacted via ping. The staff participated in the Patron Discord as Patrons, and had no duties or obligations in the Discord). To use a survey to antagonize decisions you disagree with/haven’t given time to come to fruition can be described as distasteful at best. We offer several methods provided on-site to express dissatisfaction, and you chose to instead conducted your own out of negative feelings levied against the site, apropos of nothing. This was, by definition, a passive aggressive action.
- Another particular thing we'd like to point out in this statement is "the only group-format line of contact with the moderation team was wiped." A correction: the entire website is a group-format line of contact with the moderation team. Additionally, as stated on the Patreon chat during it's closing: the Patreon Discord chat was never meant to be used as an open Support Ticket to the staff. That was never it's function, and it's due to it’s devolvement into a glorified Support Ticket that the chat was closed. The only reason staff were in that chatroom to begin with is due to being patrons of the site. Said chatroom was abused repeatedly, and therefore, removed. As it had been stated previously that the chatroom would be deleted anyway, Goatlings retains this right.
- We move on:
- We reiterate that continuing to use the Patron Discord as “the best possible place … [to bring up feedback]” is sorely misconstrued, and no blame can be levied against staff for not using the chat to do so. Additionally, this brings up the repeated pattern we noticed of making unfounded assumptions (“if the userbase is consistently saying the same thing, why is it being run past for things like merch”). Growing our website can take multiple forms. We are allowed to explore the idea of more than one, and are fully capable of doing two things at once.
- We move on:
- Although you have pre-empted some criticisms as “not minimodding”, or “acting as if you know better”, unfortunately, many of your posts come across as acting either with staff-like authority (survey), acting that you speak for an entire userbase (survey; screenshots), or acting with the confidence that you know what’s best for the site (screenshots). A lot of our members do have fantastic ideas on how to better the site, and we value that feedback a lot. However, to claim that you are not “acting as if you know better” has been proven to be contradictory.
- We move on:
- The only thing to say to this is that there’s a constructive way to word criticism, and then there’s this. To say “nothing is being done to make this happen” after several things were done to make that happen, and several things continue to be done to make that happen, was another case of unnecessarily rude, and baseless accusations.
- We move on:
- “...however, you really upset me the other day in discord by very suddenly ignoring me during our discussion.” There was no reason whatsoever to include this in your message. Had this message consisted only the questions you had, we would have had no issue with it. This was a completely unnecessary personal jab at a moderator who was at the time off duty in discussion that didn’t belong in the Patron Discord chat to begin with. Additionally, you were perfectly capable of addressing this personal matter privately. Instead, you chose to include it in a completely unrelated public forum post.
- We move on:
- After thoroughly addressing this issue to the best of our abilities in a two-hour conversation with a staff member, this description was brought to our attention. You had already made your feelings perfectly clear on the matter, multiple times on multiple platforms, and we had already made several promises to amend the vagueness of Goatling naming, taking action soon after. To continue to pursue this topic elsewhere on the site after receiving direct results makes this another example of inefficient, unnecessarily passive aggressive behavior.
- Our final example to highlight is your response to this very message. To recall to an earlier statement, there has been a pattern of making unfounded assumptions and jumping to conclusions in several of your posts - the least of which is this:
- “I personally do not remember what you're referencing as passive aggressive, as no one ever seemed to be upset by my actions (where I didn't immediately apologize)”
- We would like to make a statement here that we thought went without saying, but clearly needs reiterating. The staff of Goatlings are people. The staff member you made a personal jab at was a person. The staff member who openly addressed your criticisms with you for two hours was a person. The hands writing you messages belong to people. To address this in particular: “no one ever seemed to be upset by my actions” we would like to say that “for you to rule as such would be subjective and unfounded.”
- We ask for you to see this from our perspective, as we’ve been seeing things through yours. At the end of the day, we’re looking at a user who repeatedly chooses aggressive behavior over constructive. Who continues to go out of their way to antagonize and berate moderators who have tried their best to respond to queries (even when it was clear that no answer would ever be satisfactory). We’re looking at a user who consistently uses passive aggressive speech, which, as we’re sure you are aware of (being a member for five years), breaks Goatlings Terms of Service. We believe you to be fully capable of civil, constructive criticism. You have proclaimed many times to have feedback we need to hear, and until this point, we’ve let you express that feedback in whatever colorful way you please. While much of your feedback genuinely is valuable, and has already been acted on, your method of communicating this feedback has been unnecessarily rude, aggressive, or mis-placed. Hence, your warning.
- We understand that you pride yourself in your professionalism, in which case, we anticipate your reading of this message with an open mind and use of these many examples to, as you so willingly offer, “change your conduct accordingly”.
- Once again,
- “Thank you so much in advance for these references. If you cannot provide them, I will appeal the strike, warning, or what have you — as the allegations would then be perceived as unfounded.”
- This decision continues to be final, and this warning is not up for appeal or debate.
- Thank you,
- The Goatlings Team
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