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Unprofessional conduct in the discussion of questions.
Thread poster: John Dale D.D.
John Dale D.D.
Local time: 01:24
German to English
Jun 14, 2008

Is it just me, or is it a common phenomenon here, that people feel they have the right to, not only challenge a suggestion, but be downright insulting in their diatribe?

Without going into great detail, there are two commentators who regularly dismiss my suggestions without, seemingly, reading the explanation I take the time to furnish.

When I reply robustly to their offensive insinuations I receive a moderator's "warning" !!!

We all give of our time and expertise freely. However I am seriously wondering if it is worth the aggravation and sufferance of "idiots", to participate in this venture further.

I should like to know the following -

a) how does one complain about ignorant reposts?

b) can one "block" aggresive and uninformed comments to one's suggestions?

c) (and this is the big one); how can you (without infringing the rules set down) give such pedantic fools the comeuppance they so richly deserve?

Sorry if this in itself sounds pedantic and petty, I am really at my wits end with such nonsence and foolishness.

As Michel de Montaigne so succinctly said - "I prefer the company of peasants because they have not been educated sufficiently to reason incorrectly."


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gianfranco  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 20:24
Member (2001)
English to Italian
+ ...
About KudoZ etiquette Jun 17, 2008

John Dale D.D. wrote:
Is it just me, or is it a common phenomenon here, that people feel they have the right to, not only challenge a suggestion, but be downright insulting in their diatribe?

No, it may happen, of course, but it is not common and also contrary to the site rules and strongly discouraged by the moderators.
John Dale D.D. wrote:
Without going into great detail, there are two commentators who regularly dismiss my suggestions without, seemingly, reading the explanation I take the time to furnish.

If it happens, just send a note to the moderator assigned to that language pair. You can find a link to them at the bottom of every KudoZ page. If none is assigned, notify any other moderator able to understand the linguistic content of the question.
If there is any kind of harassment or unduly behaviour, let the moderators take the appropriate action.
John Dale D.D. wrote:
When I reply robustly to their offensive insinuations I receive a moderator's "warning" !!!

I do not know the specific incidents to which you are referring to, but it may happen, depending on how "robust" your reply was.
If your reply broke the rules, i.e. it was not strictly linguistic but another offensive comment to retaliate, you probably get yourself at least a warning.
These flame wars are not tolerated anywhere on the site (KudoZ, Forum or anywhere else).

John Dale D.D. wrote:
We all give of our time and expertise freely. However I am seriously wondering if it is worth the aggravation and sufferance of "idiots", to participate in this venture further.

Such language (as you used here) is not appropriate. If you say anything similar in a KudoZ page, when confronting others' opinion, you would be breaking the KudoZ rules, regardless of how wrong the other person may be (according to you).



John Dale D.D. wrote:
I should like to know the following -
a) how does one complain about ignorant reposts?

Simply suggest a correct or better answer and back it up, if possible, with appropriate evidence.
John Dale D.D. wrote:
b) can one "block" aggresive and uninformed comments to one's suggestions?

You cannot block them, but a moderator has some tools and the training (we have some experience on dealing with these incidents) necessary to intervene.
In case of aggressive comments, if they are not linguistic in nature but personal or offensive, do not react. Contact a moderator.
The comment will be probably promptly removed and the person posting it may be invited to abide by the site rules.
In case of repeated breaches of the rules, they may be suspended from using some features or even suspended from using the site, for a limited period of time, or for ever. We have done it many times with persistent offenders, including a number of paying members.
The rules are applied as consistently as possible, regardless of the members' status.
John Dale D.D. wrote:
c) (and this is the big one); how can you (without infringing the rules set down) give such pedantic fools the comeuppance they so richly deserve?

Ditto.
John Dale D.D. wrote:
Sorry if this in itself sounds pedantic and petty, I am really at my wits end with such nonsence and foolishness.

Ditto.
John Dale D.D. wrote:
As Michel de Montaigne so succinctly said - "I prefer the company of peasants because they have not been educated sufficiently to reason incorrectly."

Every coin has two sides. I would like to know what peasants thought of him...


bye
Gianfranco



[Edited at 2008-06-17 18:11]


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Sabine Akabayov, PhD
Israel
Local time: 02:24
Member (2011)
English to German
+ ...
be more sensitive Jun 17, 2008

Hi John,

I noticed, that your comments/explanations are sometimes a little aggressive/offending. That might be the reason why some people react negative to (all of) your posts.
When I started using ProZ, I made some (in my opinion) funny comments, but someone got offended by this and complained about me to another user. Since then I try to keep my posts as neutral as possible.
You might want to do the same.

GL

Sabine


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Erik Freitag  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 01:24
Member (2006)
Dutch to German
+ ...
Not a common phenomenon Jun 17, 2008

John Dale D.D. wrote:

Is it just me, or is it a common phenomenon here, that people feel they have the right to, not only challenge a suggestion, but be downright insulting in their diatribe?




Dear John,

in my experience, this is not at all common and must of course not be accepted.

On the other hand: Upon reading some of your contributions to Kudoz questions, I have the impressions that sometimes you take justified criticism as some kind of personal offence. The fact that your answers frequently get ignored or disagreed with has most probably nothing to do with you personally, it's just that: People disagree with the quality of your suggestion/explanation (or lack thereof). You shouldn't take that personally. Instead, see it as an opportunity to learn.

I must also say that your very post here is one of the most rude and offensive ones I have read for a long time.

I know it takes some time to get used to Kudoz customs (I have stepped on some mines myself when I started), but it's worth the effort.

That said, I would like to repeat that insults and offensive language (which includes calling peers "idiots" and "pedantic fools") are unacceptable.


Kind regards,
Erik


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Marie-Hélène Hayles  Identity Verified
Local time: 01:24
Italian to English
+ ...
Professional site for professionals Jun 17, 2008

John, I can't comment on the quality of your Kudoz answers as I don't speak German, but most of the ones I looked at did contain at least one spelling or grammatical error, sometimes in the answer field itself. When others have pointed this out you have dismissed them as being pedants.

From my point of view, part of translation is pedantry. Language is what we do, and we have to do it well if we want to survive in a competitive market.
In addition, in my opinion it's only courteous to the asker to provide an answer which is the best that we can offer, taking the time to check it for typos and the like.

It's also worth bearing in mind that all areas of Proz.com are searchable by any search engine, including Kudoz questions. It's worth bearing this in mind if we aim to create a professional impression in the minds of potential clients. Suggestions and contributions littered with typing and spelling errors may not be the best way to achieve this.

[Edited at 2008-06-17 17:02]


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John Dale D.D.
Local time: 01:24
German to English
TOPIC STARTER
thanks to everybody Jun 17, 2008

I should like to thank everybody for their comments on my "rantings", I am encouraged by the replies and comments I have received.

At the time, I was somewhat irritated and annoyed by the negative comments to some suggestions I had made, after considerable research on behalf of the asker. One in particular claiming my suggestion was "nonsense", as the referring link made no sense ( the same claimant later admitting he could not actually read the link I had suggested).

As for the misspellings, I have to admit being over dependant upon the "spellcheck function" which is not available here. An admission of my sloth.

Finally, I should like you to consider that any "unseemly" remarks I had made were as rebuttal to equally, if not graver, negative remarks aimed at me personally.

Thanking you all once again for taking the time to comment upon my, pehaps petty, complaint.


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Mervyn Henderson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 01:24
Member
Spanish to English
+ ...
Ask the peasants Jun 17, 2008

John,

Kudoz has nothing to do with it - you need to relax, man.

Next time this happens don't hesitate even one second. Make your way to Styria's most isolated village, have a stein or two on the terrace of the Rote Löwe, and look out over the stunning mountain views as you discuss all this with the local peasants. If you go far enough there'll be more of them per square metre than you'll need.

Then come back to the city, and you'll feel better.


Mervyn


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John Dale D.D.
Local time: 01:24
German to English
TOPIC STARTER
Thank you Mervyn Jun 17, 2008

I think I have to explain here, in the quotation I believe the expression "peasant" means an average person, it is not meant as a derogitary term. I do not understand your reference to "terrace of the Rote Löwe", for the sake of clarity,not arguement, can you tell me what you mean.

Thanks in advance.


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Steffen Walter  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 01:24
Member (2002)
English to German
+ ...
Precision not pedantry Jun 17, 2008

John Dale D.D. wrote:
c) (and this is the big one); how can you (without infringing the rules set down) give such pedantic fools the comeuppance they so richly deserve?


John,

If I were in your shoes, I'd be very, very cautious calling these KudoZ participants "pedantic fools" - what they have been advocating was, in most cases, the (linguistic) precision translation (always) requires, rather than pedantry. Also, I have been personally offended by your tone more than once, including your statement above. As Mervyn so rightly said, please do relax and think twice before firing back such shots!

(If you feel like being "under attack", contact a moderator instead of retaliating - in this regard, please read Gianfranco's related comment).

Steffen


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John Dale D.D.
Local time: 01:24
German to English
TOPIC STARTER
Thank you Steffan Jun 17, 2008

Perhaps you do not realise it but expressions such as "If I were in your shoes" and "be very, very cautious" are, to a native speaker, "like red rags to a bull", very inflammatory.

Maybe this is my problem (I do admit that is my problem), I read more into the sentence written than is intended.

I am extremely perturbed that you have been personally offended, I have much regard for the inspired and erudite solutions you have offered others.

I can only apologise for any offence which I may have caused you and give you my assurance it was unintended and will not re-occur.

john


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Mervyn Henderson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 01:24
Member
Spanish to English
+ ...
Red Lion Jun 17, 2008

Or I think that's it in German, anyway. A cross reference to UK culture, if you like, where "The Red Lion" is the most popular name for a pub, and nearly every town has one. Nothing more sinister.

All the best,


Mervyn


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John Dale D.D.
Local time: 01:24
German to English
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks Mervyn Jun 17, 2008

Didn't think it was sinister at all, just didn't want to miss a pub By the way The Red Lion is a bit passe what about the "Passed out Pedant and Inebriated Peasant" for a name??

thanks again

john


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Erik Freitag  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 01:24
Member (2006)
Dutch to German
+ ...
Really? Jun 17, 2008

John Dale D.D. wrote:

Finally, I should like you to consider that any "unseemly" remarks I had made were as rebuttal to equally, if not graver, negative remarks aimed at me personally.



That's not my impression, but anyway...


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John Dale D.D.
Local time: 01:24
German to English
TOPIC STARTER
thank you efreitag Jun 17, 2008

you wrote "The fact that your answers frequently get ignored or disagreed with has most probably nothing to do with you personally" I agree with the disagreement part, however "ignored"? If my answers were ignored, by whom could I be personally affronted?

The kernel of my complaint was people who disagree and state "personal" reasons such as "have you read a dictionary", "this is complete nonsense" and "you have no idea" as the basis for their disagreement. I am sure you would agree such statements are personal.

However, thank you for taking the time to throw my apology in my face, reflects more on you than me I fear.


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Erik Freitag  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 01:24
Member (2006)
Dutch to German
+ ...
Q.E.D. Jun 17, 2008

John Dale D.D. wrote:

you wrote "The fact that your answers frequently get ignored or disagreed with has most probably nothing to do with you personally" I agree with the disagreement part, however "ignored"? If my answers were ignored, by whom could I be personally affronted?


I just observed that your suggestions remarkably often are disagreed with or get no comments at all. I doubt this is because people try to offend you personally, it rather *might* be a hint to the overall quality of your contributions.

Offending remarks to your contributions are of course inacceptable, but my personal impression is that you feel offended by what really is justified criticism, and sometimes you react in an inadequate manner.

John Dale D.D. wrote:

However, thank you for taking the time to throw my apology in my face, reflects more on you than me I fear.


Q.E.D.


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