This is another post about the current state of the world, resistance, feelings, and violence. In it, we want to discuss our hopes for the forum, some new guidelines we are adopting for how we as the admod team will manage content here, and a major caveat that we hope everyone (including all moderators) will take into account when choosing how to interact with this community.
What We Want FoCA To Be
At its best, FoCA is a mutually supportive community where people can bring their hopes and joys and pains and problems, and share them with other people who can provide various forms of responses. These responses may include advice, encouragement, jedi hugs, sharing of stories, pointers to useful resources, and the occasional recipe.
We recognize that many people have intense emotional responses to current political situations in many parts of the world. We want this community to be a place where people can get support when these emotions are hard to deal with.
We recognize that for many people, getting involved in resistance movements or other kinds of activism is part of how they respond to these emotions. We also recognize that this sort of involvement can raise emotional responses as well, and again, we want this to be a place where we can be mutually supportive.
We recognize that there are competing needs around some of these emotional responses, and sometimes we have to make choices. We have already posted about this specifically related to violence aimed at neo-Nazis, white supremacists, white nationalists, and other members of the alt-right: http://friendsofcaptainawkward.com/foru ... =6&t=10735
However, as an admod team, we have also been discussing our approach to violent resistence in general, as well as our response to discussions of illegal activity. In order to be transparent with the community we serve, we want to share some guidelines we have adopted for how we will moderate discussions of violent resistance.
1. We will not host discussions of violence you intend to commit, no matter how justified that violence may or may not be. For purposes of this board, violence means property damage or attacks on humans or animals. Any such content will be removed.
2. We will allow discussion of your reactions to violence, subject to two limits. First, you must abide by the guidelines laid out in the post referenced above. Second, you may not de-anonymize violent acts. If someone punches someone else in the nose and you reveal identifying information about the puncher, we will remove the content.
3. You may post about non-violent forms of protest. Please recognize that laws vary between jurisdictions across the world, and we are utterly and literally unable to moderate content on the basis of legality. In some places, standing on the sidewalk waving a sign is illegal and in other places it is entirely legal. Since sign-waving qualifies under our definition as "not violence", we will not remove a post where you discuss taking this kind of action. But please read the Caveat and think about it before posting about non-violent actions that are illegal where you live.
4. When there are competing needs in discussions of resistance, both violent and non-violent, we will always choose to support the needs of the more marginalized group, or when privilege is not an issue, of the group that is in the more precarious position. In some cases, we may restrict discussion to certain threads (again, see our policies on violence against Nazis, referenced above). We reserve the right to forbid discussions entirely if we deem that to be in the best interests of the community.
The internet is a big, open space. Not everyone who participates in internet discussions has your best interests at heart. Even FoCA, wonderful as it may be, is a popular, porous, unsecured corner of the internet. It's entirely possible for third parties to use this community against its members. Data scraping, IP address culling, social engineering, and other techniques may be used to identify you and hold what you write here against you.
For this reason, we urge you to exercise extreme caution about using this community to organize, or even to discuss your own plans for, any actions of that may be of dubious legality where you live.
If you have any questions or comments about this post, PMs sent to SorchaRei will be shared with the rest of the admod team.
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The difference between theory and practice is that in theory, there is no difference between theory and practice, but in practice, there is.