Sunday, January 16th, 2011
Issue: 64   Editor: ApocalypticAldarion


COLUMN: Bans are not to be discussed SomethingWittyPoison

With the recent bans of players shooting crews such as Legion, and the banning of ex-Help Desk Operator CrissAngel, the old rule has come up again. But why canít bans be discussed?

Just to make clear for you nitpickers out there, I am discussing whether bans should be able to be discussed or if discussing them should be against the rules. ďSimplesĒ.

As what I suppose would have to be classed as a Bootleggers journalist I have no love for this rule, it frankly ruins what could be potentially great stories. Iíd love nothing more than to delve into the murky depths of why a player classed as Ďthe best of the bestí as a Help Desk Operator- CrissAngel was banned. Or to see why NamCam was banned and debate the merits of the people he killed being revived with you all in the Buzz. But I canít. Rules are rules and whether I like them or not I canít break them and expect to have the article published, keep my job at the Buzz, or indeed to keep my account unbanned. So Iíve established, in a very long winded way something you already knew; bans cannot be discussed.

So why not?

In my opinion making it against the rules only stops the staff from defending themselves from accusations of corruption; people who are annoyed at being banned will simply break the rules and throw their accusations around and all staff can do is lock the topic. Frankly, this just makes them look guiltier. It seems odd to me that a rule that is implemented and was at one stage made up by staff ties their hands so badly, perhaps this is a sign of just how out of touch with the game BSF2000 has become. Another argument against the rule is that bans can sometimes be in the public interest, such as recent staff and shooter bans and greater transparency leads to more honest work from staff. Not that I am suggesting anything untoward is being done by staff, but with more transparency all allegations of corruption and the like can be brushed aside.

However, it is undeniable that if bans were to become discussable it would lead to a barrage of moaning about bans and people trying to get bans removed after the appeal process has failed, despite the fact creating a new account removes any chances of being unbanned. I think the best argument against allowing bans to be discussed is one I have been told by a number of members of staff, and that is that once people can publish the details of their bans they will also be publishing the details of how they were caught and this would make it easier for cheats to evade punishment.

So thatís what I think, but what about all of you. Below is a selection of what some of you had to say about the issue, some for the rule, some against and some proposing potential solutions. If you would like to comment on the rule then please leave a comment below.

PUBLIC OPINION:

I think bans should be discussable, since other players can then benefit from in the way that they know when a certain line is crossed. It also raises awareness of what if allowed and what is not, since I can't imagine that everyone (fully) reads the TOS.
~Mister12

The current rule is bullshit, since we arenot allowed to discuss bans Mods can ban for bullshit reasons and know that they can hide behind the rule.

Lately we have seen alot of bans towards a specific group of players, of course some of them have been legit however several have not been and thatís simply not fair.

My suggestion is that after the appeal process is ended the players should be allowed to address his/her ban in public and the mod have the right to answer to that topic with whatever evidence he/she might have(as long as it not discloses privacy info).

~Cliffy

I would say it should be up to the player if they want the ban discussed or not. If they start talking about it in the forums, than that should free up the EG to respond. I think it would stop people from arguing in the forums about bans they knew had validity and also stop Mods from banning people for little to no reason
~Sayapo

This rule is already broke by too many players/moderators... so i think this one isnít necessary anymore!
~Sotrossi

Here's a secret: Bans aren't discussed because usually, we either do not have enough proof to make our ban stick in the eyes of the players, or it gives out personal information.
To be honest, I think it's BS that a ban cannot be discussed- and I don't think they should be completely shunned away like they don't exist. A little publicity can go a long away, especially if a ban is done for no reason (which seems to be the norm now days).

Oh and I think bans should be discussed if the person banned brings it up, because if they're willing to put their BS on the table (and usually lie to make the banning moderator look like shit), then I don't see an issue with the banning moderator to show all the evidence against them.

~Lala aka Nyxxie

By not disusing the bans in the forums it does make it a little harder to know exactly how the Mods catch people cheating and really it is no oneís business but the person who got banned on why said person was banned so why is there a need to discuss them on the forums.
~ImPothead

Bans are something between the player and the mod. I don't think that should change, other people shouldn't be involved in this.
~ShamPain