So now I've had a conversation with a moderator at Fosstodon.

It seems as though, despite the sites pretty bold CoC prohibition on "public or private oppressive language or actions" (language they borrowed from elsewhere), they construe that prohobition much more narrowly than is written.

In fact they allow a great deal of oppressive language, if you don't @ anyone directly.

This contradiction bolsters my inclination to suspend the instance—until they decide to enforce their CoC as written.

@lawremipsum

I'm not sure if I am the moderator you mean. If so, I didn't mean to suggest that we construe the CoC narrowly; we haven't really had a formal discussion.

What I can tell you is that we take all reports very seriously and (setting aside obvious spam ) it's very common for us to discuss the appropriate action as a group.

Plus, we have about 1 moderator per 200 active users—far higher than most instances—which helps us strongly enforce the CoC.

@codesections what you said was "Our practice has been to draw a distinction between 'speech to' and 'speech about'"

That distinction isn't in the CoC, and it isn't in the spirit of the text of that document, so to me, it is a narrowing construction.

Let me know if the practice changes.

You might consider running the practice by the original author(s) to see whether they agree its consistent with the text. Seems clear to me it isn't.

@lawremipsum

Yeah, that's a fair point.

I personally find it to be a challenging balance to strike. Our mission, per the CoC is foster an instance that's "radically inclusive with respect for all users of the instance". The challenge, though, is that our only real tool is *excluding* people—that is, banning them.

Sometimes (often!) that's justified, but it brings its own cost in terms of inclusivity.

I'm not sure we always get the balance right, but I know we've aiming too.

@codesections there are intermediate steps, including conversations, public apologies, other soft forms of authority.

I just think it's deceptive for Fosstodon to have an anti-oppression CoC but read it in a way that tolerates oppression.

@lawremipsum

Well, we have a pro-inclusivity CoC. Some people hold opinions that other people find oppressive, and we're tasked with finding a middle ground that is as inclusive as possible while also preventing oppression.

The way *I* try to strike that balance is, as I said, by focusing on direct conversations. If someone makes a comment to their own followers, it's *less* likely to be oppressive (though not guaranteed, of course). But I acknowledge that people of good faith disagree

@codesections @lawremipsum I note that you haven't taken a position on whether the specific opinions expressed by Kev in the snowflake thread are oppressive or not.

You have to make a decision on this. If you don't, your silence speaks for you.

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