Friday, April 9, 2010

"Ratings Systems" and the Bullies That Abuse Them

This kind of does and kind of doesn't have anything to do with knitting or crocheting.

I know this isn't just me. I know this because I've heard complaints from others and have seen these things with my own eyes in action. I don't know if it has something to with how a person can be "anonymous" on the internet, and therefore can act like a complete jerk and get away with it. In other words, a bully.

As a member of Crochetville, I see it a lot more in the moderators than in the members of the community. They seem to have their heads up their butts about copyright when they have no idea what they're talking about. I even had one of them once tell me she lunched with her lawyers quite regularly just to talk about the website. WHY would you even waste money on something like that, if it were the truth? It's a website. Red Heart, Caron, or whatever yarn company isn't going to waste time and money putting people on the internet to go looking for websites that "violate their copyrights". They wouldn't bother putting up all the money and effort to sue some stupid little webpage for some minor little crap because it isn't worth it to them. And their approach to their members is, frankly, horrible. I never see them saying anything, anywhere, unless it's to scold somebody for something stupid. That's one of the reasons I don't bother with that place so much now.

I tried other crochet communities and even attempted once to make my own. But, as I've seen with a lot of older communities, people are not willing to leave for something better. Even when they're not happy with the current state of the community they're in. WHY this is, I will never know.

I'd joined with Ravelry at some point in 2007, if I remember right. And I'd basically let the account sit, poking at it once in a while. Then someone from Crochetville told me how much more polite and helpful people there were. So, I decided to go dig around and see what there was to be seen. And, really, when I first started to get involved, it WAS very friendly and nice. However, as the sad state of everything seems to be, it got worse and worse and worse.

On their forums, Ravelry has a system. On each post, you can click a button to say you find it educational, interesting, agree with it, disagree with it, or give love. WHY on earth would they institute such a system? Over and over and over and over again I've watched systems like this turn otherwise nice people into complete jackasses and the entire thing ends up crashing and burning at some point or another. There are, for whatever reason, people who will hit that disagree button just for the hell of doing it. They don't disagree, they just want to be a jerk. Or they've decided they don't like the poster, and so they hit the disagree button to "punish" that person. Therefore, the people who get bullied by such ones end up leaving because they feel their words mean nothing to no one and all that remains are those very bullies, who only end up fighting amongst each other. In the end, the community is ruined and no one wants to participate.

After so many years on the internet and seeing so much of this, I can't help but be jaded. It makes me feel so much less interested in participating. How unfortunate.