We’ve been getting some concern over “imbecilic” avatars names. I’m not going to point them out (though I’m sorely tempted to), but you all know who you are.
Imbecilic Avatar Names are problematic because we said not that we’re 18+, anything goes except for hate speech, etc, etc. Once we go beyond that, we run into the age old problem of what offends who, and in what language, and in what context.
The other problem with Imbecilic Avatar names is that even if you ignore them, their Avatar name still shows up, which I guess accomplishes their goal of shouting out to the world “I AM AN IMBECILE”.
After chatting with SamSyn, I think we have a fine solution. When you ignore an Imbecile (or anyone else), their nametag will now say “Ignored” and appear slightly dimmed. Of course, you can still click on the nametag to see who they REALLY are (or, if you want a good dose of imbecility in your day).
You can see the proposed effect in the screenshot below. Please be aware that “Fier” was just chosen as an example, no doubt “Fier” is perfectly wonderful person who has (unwittingly) volunteered for this demonstration.
Let us know what you think. And Fier, thanks for volunteering.
P.S. I wanted to add a couple of comments to this:
- One of my rules, which I heard from a very smart man years ago, is “Make Tools, not Rules, and Get Out of the Way”. This change is a tool, designed to make it less important to have a rule. In the new There, you can assume we’re going to work hard to make the right tools, and only make rules as a last resort. We WILL make rules if we have to, but we’d prefer not to.
- There have been suggestions that we go back to the old scheme of censoring Avatar names. Right now, unless it falls under the category of hate speech, etc, we’re not going to do that. The problem is, the censorship never really worked well: It was trivial to get around, it was problematic for names like “Sassy” (contains “Ass”), and culturally it was impossible to please everyone (“PigLover” is a person with interesting taste in pets in the US, and an insult in some Islamic countries.
- We don’t have the staff to police the world as we did before. If people want us to go back to the old scheme, then that will last about 3 months, and then we’ll close again, this time for ever.
Of course, we’re going to see how this tool works, and possibly make adjustments going forward. I know that’s not what some people want, but that’s the approach we’re taking now.