First off, I wanted to say hi to all the new members we've had join in the past month. Thank you for joining us here at Beehaw. A community doesn't exist without its members, and it's exciting watching this instance grow.
I've always been a proponent of keeping explanations as simple as possible and allowing discussions to clarify the finer points, but I've noticed that I've been repeating myself a lot recently with the influx of new users and lot of fantastic questions about what we are, what we're doing, and why we're different.
This is to be the first post of a series in which I'm going to share my own thoughts on the vision of Beehaw and how I hope it can be brought to fruition. It's also a place for me to share my thoughts on what's wrong with other social media platforms, such as some of the major pitfalls of most moderation systems. To be clear, I don't speak on behalf of everyone who's been involved in starting this instance and I certainly don't speak on behalf of everyone here, so this isn't meant to be a manifesto, or a set of rules etched into stone tablets for you to obey. I will try to frame ideas that I hold through my own eyes (I), and ideas which I believe the establishing community holds through the lens of our eyes (we).
# A condensed history of the formation of Beehaw
The group of users who created Beehaw used to exist on another platform. Many of us came to that platform from many other platforms before it. We were sold on the idea that it was a different platform, where discussion would be encouraged, and things would be different. While the platform was still small, there was a much higher feeling of cohesion and community and users being aggressive or hateful to each other was incredibly rare. When they were mean, it was often over emotionally charged issues and typically resolved itself with apologies or slight changes in who interacted with who. Over time this platform, like many others before it, got infested with a group of people I like to refer to as rationalists.
I'm simplifying their mindset to that of the rationalist, because rationalism touts itself as a belief that opinions and actions should be based on reason and knowledge, rather than belief or emotional response, and they often touted such ideals. While I agree that beliefs and emotional responses can get in the way of important work, the kind of rationalist that I take qualms with is someone who doesn't understand that their own beliefs or emotions are clouding their judgement. At times they repeat racist, sexist, or otherwise bigoted narratives because they are not as learned as they think. They often end up causing a lot of harm to minority individuals who already struggle to get society to listen to them because bigoted notions dominate the common narratives found in society.
On this platform I attempted to address this emerging problem of rationalism. To be clear I do not view these people as bad people. I simply think they are misled or unintentionally ignorant. When I was younger, I found myself in possession of many of the thoughts they discuss because I was also taught them through the lens of a colonial oppressive system. It took a lot of work to undo some of the brainwashing that I had gone through and to realize the harm that I was causing by 'debating' these issues online.
Unfortunately for me my attempts to address this problem on said platform were met with ire by the creator of said website, and I was told in no uncertain terms that I should cease these meta-discussions altogether. That message and that final thread that I had created on the matter lead to a discussion on an informal community for the website where likeminded individuals began to lay the groundwork for what we felt was wrong with this system of moderation and the problems we saw in modern social media platforms.
# The spirit of Beehaw
The issue as I see it with modern social media is the way in which rules are enforced. There are many good reasons to itemize specific behavior which is not allowed, but the downside is that extremely specific rules are easy to maneuver around. We've all experienced someone who's a real jerk on the internet but manages to never get banned because they never explicitly violate any rules. I'm not sexist, they'll claim, but happen to post a lot of articles calling into question modern feminism or criticize the wage gap.
I think many people today would agree that someone 'debating' the benefits of phrenology in the open would constitute racist behavior, but there was a time and place in the world where it was considered real science, despite many scientists distancing themselves from this field very early on and critics writing scathing commentaries on this emerging field. This same guise of civility is frequently exercised by bigots, with modern examples of sexism, homophobia and transphobia being easily found on nearly any major social media platform.
Humans are pretty good at figuring out when someone is being a dick online, even if they are acting within the defined rules, and one solution to this problem is to recenter humans in our online social platforms. The idea of not having a ton of explicit rules, and instead having simple rules like "Be(e) nice" is a startling one for most, because it upends what we've come to know and expect from the internet. However, by keeping the rules simple and instead attempting to enforce the spirit _behind the rules_, we're able to deal more effectively with problematic individuals and create a space in which you aren't worried about whether you're going to have explain to someone why you're a human and why you shouldn't be subject to incessant bigotry online.
# What is (and isn't) Beehaw
That brings us to the fundamental question of what Beehaw is and isn't. Beehaw is a social media platform. So, we do want you coming here and sharing links to news articles, websites you find, starting discussions, connecting with others, and in general doing what you see on other social media websites. We want you to do this while being nice to each other. If you aren't nice, we'll remind you to be nice. If you continue to be problematic, we'll escalate from there, but it's going to be on a case-by-case basis. If your first reply when we ask you to be nice to each other is to fuck off, I'm going to respond in kind. I also understand that being emotional is a normal part of being a human and that some of us struggle with anger more than others, and I'd like for this to be a community which is open to the idea of reversing actions, such as bans, if you're willing to talk with the community about why you think it should be reversed. Of note, we simply do not tolerate intolerant behavior. Being explicitly racist, sexist, homophobic, transphobic, or bigoted in any other fashion is not tolerated here.
But how might one determine when it's okay to be intolerant towards people you _believe_ are being intolerant or who are being intolerant but doing so because they are uneducated or have not spent time deconstructing their own privilege? Many philosophers have written extensively about this subject, and I simply don't have time to write an entire manifesto. In simple terms, I am not advocating for tone policing. I believe that being outraged and angry at people who are destroying our society is a good thing to do. When the supreme court removes protections for abortion, it's okay to be outraged and to take action into your own hands - they have done something intolerant. When someone advocates online that you don't have the right to your own body, it's okay to tell them to fuck off. In fact, I greatly encourage it. This is being intolerant to the intolerant.
However, when someone online shares an opinion and it feels like they might be intolerant and you jump to the conclusion that they are intolerant and you launch into a tirade at them, this is not nice behavior. You didn't check if they have the opinion you think they have, and that's simply not nice to someone which you don't know.
It gets even more complicated when you consider someone who is sharing an opinion they have which is actively harmful to many individuals in the world, but it's due to their ignorance. I personally believe that so long as this person is not actively spreading this intolerant viewpoint and are **working on themselves to become a better person**, that it would not be particularly productive to launch into a tirade against them. I understand, however, how someone could be quite rude in response to such intolerance and I agree that this person may desperately need to be educated appropriately, but there is no way for that discussion to happen on this platform in a productive manner while lobbing insults at each other. I can understand why, at first brush, some might consider this tone policing. However, I disapprove of the intolerant viewpoint, and I approve of it being corrected, but I also approve of the intolerant person attempting to become a better person.
The only way for a platform which is hoping to exist as an explicitly nice place online to avoid taking sides in a situation like this is to withdraw from the quandary entirely. This kind of nuanced political and philosophical discussion is just simply not meant for Beehaw. I'd like to think that I'm aware and learned enough to avoid 'debating' things like phrenology, which are obviously racist, but I'm also smart enough to realize that there's likely some ideas which I've internalized or been taught by a colonialist western society which are _harmful_ to other minorities. I want to be able to learn about how everything I was taught was wrong, and to be corrected, and that space can only exist when we don't let users berate each other over ideas they project on others (whether that projection happens to be correct or not).
You may have noticed the recent additional paragraphs added to the sidebar. We are excited to have the [Open Collective Foundation](https://opencollective.com/foundation) as our fiscal host.
Our site costs, approximately, ~~$10~~ $12 per month to operate.
As is stated on the sidebar:
> At the time being we are not planning on having any profits. 100% of the costs will go towards server time, licensing costs, and artwork.
Every dip (even the small ones) in this image is every time the server hung up, crashed and restarted. Most of this was due to the fact that the server had been running out of RAM and physical disk space.
As seen in the same image, it was March 7 that the admins decided to double our RAM and physical disk space by going to the next tier. What used to cost $6 per month now costs $12 per month to operate our server.
I have a bot that sends me an email every time our server goes down. I was getting 3-4 of these per day before the upgrade. Since the upgrade, I have not received one.
Hi! I'm considering creating a "Slow News" / "Slow Journalism" community but it seems Beehaw doesn't allow users to create new community. I'm guessing this is one of Beehaw's Lemmy customization aiming to keep the discussion civil, possibly to avoid creation of toxic communities.
Is there a process to request creation of a new community? Or is the community list fully locked and static?
In any case, here's my pitch for a new community: "[Slow News](https://la-rem.eu/2013/03/slow-news/)" refers to a stream of information and recent events that is intentionally slowed down, in the spirit of the [Slow movement](https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slow_movement_(culture)).
Rationale : The spread of real-time medias (radios, TV, Internet) accelerated the pace and increased the amount of news articles published. This may be detrimental in some aspects, with an information overload for the readers, and a race to publish breaking news first. This often lead to bad quality journalism due to the pressure to publish fast with limited verification and zero investigation.
Slow News' aim: Go in the opposite direction and literally slow the publication of news to allow readers to consume information at their own pace, and to give more time to produce better quality, investigative journalism. Slow News media outlets favor long piece article, typically published at a slower rate.
This is also known as [Slow Journalism](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slow_journalism).
Slow News community: It would be focused as exclusively as possible to sharing slow news articles, preferably long piece investigative journalism. Moderation would have be stricter than a typical News community as it would limit publication of article that don't fit the slow news concept: breaking news, article about developing events, sources that have poor reliability or bad track records due failed fact check, fake news.
I can understand the idea of considering the same posts in two beehaw communities as spam.
But i suppose that one post can have important interdisciplinary relevance to people who subscribe exclusively to two different communities. Hence I dont agree with considering a post to be considered as spam if they're posted in inter-disciplinary comminities unless the definitions for the communities are very specific. People might sub to one community that may be related to another, while not subbing to the "another" one for any reason.
Thanks for reading hehe.
Christian version: do onto others as you'd want them to do onto you
Buddhism: don't get bad karma
Islam: None of you has faith until he loves for his brother or his neighbor what he loves for himself
(Compare and contrast with capitalism: the poor don't work hard enough therefore should suffer from poverty)
We've posted a number of times about our increasing storage issues. We're currently at the cusp of using 80% of the 25gb we have available in the current tier for the online service we run this instance on. This has caused some issues with the server crashing in recent days.
We've been monitoring and reporting on this [progress](https://beehaw.org/post/237080?scrollToComments=true) occasionally, including support requests and comments on the main lemmy instance. Of particular note, it seems that pictures tend to be the culprit when it comes to storage issues.
The last time a discussion around pict-rs came up, the following [comment](https://lemmy.ml/comment/280731) stuck out to me as a potential solution
> Storage requirements depend entirely on the amount of images that users upload. In case of slrpnk.net, there are currently 1.6 GB of pictrs data. You can also use s3 storage, or something like sshfs to mount remote storage.
Is there anyone around who is technically proficient enough to help guide us through potential solutions using "something like sshfs" to mount remote storage? As it currently exists, our only feasible option seems to be upgrading from $6/month to $12/month to double our current storage capacity (25GB -> 50 GB) which seems like an undesirable solution.
From the early stages of conceptualization of what we wanted to do differently, up through the feedback we've been getting as Beehaw has been growing, there's been a consistent narrative and push back from certain individuals about how we've decided to run things here. To be clear, these are the individuals whom are either on the fence, those who are not enthusiastic about our mission and voice it elsewhere, and to a lesser extent comprise of some of the individuals we have since banned from our platform. The narrative typically takes the side of 'open/free speech' is tantamount and that any suppression of said speech is unwelcome (typically said in a much more hostile way). As I've experienced this push back, I've slowly gathered my thoughts and realized what I believe is a fundamental disconnect between those who have earnestly and openly adopted our platform and those who fight against it.
Beehaw is a community. Communities are organic. As a community grows and shrinks, everything about the community fundamentally changes. Most online social spaces don't operate as communities on the same level that communities do offline. When communities are run in a way that the members of the community do not like, the community often splinters, or leaders are ousted. Websites tend to have much stronger incentives to stay on a platform and leaders (platforms) are much more resistant to this kind of natural control by the members of the platform (you can't exactly overthrow Facebook). However, communities still need to have some kind of rules, and because the size of a community is much more amorphous online (in general also much larger), the default state we're used to online is one of semi-authoritarianism with explicit rules.
If you've ever spent some time deeply involved in an offline community, especially if you've done so as an organizer or otherwise involved in the management or running of a community, you're probably at least somewhat aware of the kinds of discussions that communities regularly need, in order to keep them running. Communities are not perfectly homogeneous, and many communities value diversity. However, get enough humans together and there will always be disconnects of values, boundaries, wants, and needs. Navigating these disconnects can be as simple as ensuring that two people don't sit near each other at an event or as difficult as engaging the majority of the community in a discussion about what kinds of behavior are acceptable and what aren't. Discussions happen at all kinds of different levels and involve different groups of people to reflect where the disconnect happened and involve the parties necessary to resolve the disconnect as well as to manage the emotions, needs, wants, values, or boundaries of people who were hurt when this disconnect happened.
If you're not familiar with running communities, you're probably at least aware of this from simply living with other humans. It's rare that two people both desire everything the same- disconnects over how clean a house should be, where to place objects such as kitchen utensils, how to interact with or ask for permission to use objects owned by another person or that are for shared use, and other such disconnects are commonly discussed when cohabitating with another human. These discussions can be as simple as asking your housemate to clean their dishes within a day of using them to allow for the space you like in a kitchen when cooking or may be as complicated as months or years of discussions, debates, or fights and can cause a serious strain on the relationships between the involved parties. Many children are often ecstatic to move away from their parents because they've been strained by these kinds of disconnects and the often inadequate resolution of conflict.
While there are some limitations with regards to governance and some design considerations on the kind of community we would like to grow here, ultimately Beehaw is a community and at the core of that community is the desire for a stronger community experience. One thing that offline communities do a much better job at, is navigating these discussions. Online communities often operate at a scale which being cold is the only feasible way to operate a platform, and thus explicit rules enhance the ability to scale moderation and enforce behavior. Unfortunately, this kind of framework results in pushing out minority individuals, reinforcing an echo chamber and in some cases promoting some very not nice behavior. Our goal is to create a platform in which nice people will want to stick around so that the experience is less toxic than other websites and because of such it needs to resemble an offline community - the rules must be more open to interpretation and the way the rules are interpreted needs to be a community effort.
Which brings me to the reason I'm writing this post in the first place - many free speech advocates and others who've pushed against the lax rules have offered suggestions of making the rules more explicit, of weakening the need for community discussions. Many individuals who've participated on this website and received bans have explicitly resisted having a discussion about whether their behavior was acceptable or not. These are both incompatible with the vision of this website. We want this to be a community - this means that discussions about behavior should organically arise. When someone violates a rule they aren't banned immediately, but rather reminded that they need to behave appropriately. In the offline world, this might resemble a friend asking you about how you treated their friend, a pastor pulling you aside and talking to you about how you've seemed on edge lately, or security asking you not to vape inside their establishment. What this resembles depends on the severity of the behavior, who's around to witness the behavior, how others react to and respond to said behavior, and a variety of other factors. The more severe the behavior, the more severe the reaction. Extreme measures are reserved for the most heinous of actions and the analogous behavior online (preemptive banning from our platform, de-federation, etc.) is treated with the hesitancy and respect it deserves. Someone being banned from an establishment they've never attended doesn't happen out of the ether - it happens because people in the community express this wish and it involves a serious enough crime for it to be justified (such as a history of domestic abuse, sexual assault, or other heinous acts).
If you're worried about how our rules are explicitly open to interpretation, that's on purpose and I hope the text above helps to clarify the vision that I have (and others of the community share) around how I'd like to see this community evolve and what we'd like to think we're doing differently on this website. I'm not banning people for no reason or simply because they don't agree with me. I want people to disagree with me. I want diverse opinions in here. But I also **need** this place to be nice and members of the community need to be willing to hold each other accountable in creating that kind of space. Of note, I've never banned a single person without openly discussing what happened with other individuals who participate in this community and asking for their input. I can't promise this will always be the case, but I can promise that I'll be open to having a discussion with any community member who feels that something unjust happened with another user or to themselves.
I didn't notice a meta community, so I chose this one.
Does beehaw happen to have a Matrix Space/room and if not, are there any plans for one? I've been distancing myself from Discord to eventually drop it entirely, but would still like to take part in the conversation going on in this instance.
More precisely, https://lemmy.ml/c/anarchism doesn't show the same comments when I'm browsing it through my Beehaw account.
Most posts have no comments at all (and 0 upvotes too), but I can go straight to lemmy.ml in another tab and see that there are in fact discussions going on in the comments.
This problem doesn't affect all of the posts.
I checked but it has nothing to do with lemmygrad being defederated or blocked, comments not showing can be from various instances.
How can I troubleshoot that ?
It has resolved itself but I saw someone else had the same issue, so it may happen again. I hope this helps in diagnosing the problem.
Between about 9:40 AM Eastern and 9:44 AM, I got the message on the page tried to open and the main page of beehaw.org:
> 404: FetchError: invalid json response body at http://lemmy:8536/api/v3/site
I don't think it was a browser or extension problem since I was able to view the site on my phone just fine but here's the info just in case.
I primarily use Firefox on desktop (Windows 10), but I immediately tried a private Firefox tab and both Edge and Chrome (no extensions). The private tab, Edge, and Chrome said:
> 404: FetchError: invalid json response body at http://lemmy:8536/api/v3/site? reason: Unexpected end of JSON input
I use an Android phone and Beehaw was fine on Firefox and Bromite using my phone's data/not wifi. I was signed in to my account on the desktop Firefox but not on any of the other browsers.
Hi, I noticed Beehaw.org is completely broken on iOS and MacOS devices. I opened a github issue with this problem, what is cause my Lemmy site too. May you check it, and we can help each other: [https://github.com/LemmyNet/lemmy-ui/issues/730](https://github.com/LemmyNet/lemmy-ui/issues/730)
It looks a lot like hakenkreuz to me, given that only the edges have a hooked line, a bit like the hakenkreuz, and from the middle of the edges everything is just straightfoward. Can it be updated with something better? Sorry if this is a stupid post.
I can find firstname.lastname@example.org, but why can I not see email@example.com?
I put the URL in as: https://firstname.lastname@example.org
I put the linux URL in as: https://email@example.com
Linux URL works, Jellyfin gives a 404 error. I'm new here, so is it something I'm missing?
Generally speaking, our instance has been attacked by bad actors causing the site to hang/crash/504 every 2-5 hours.
I've spent several days trying to pinpoint, precisely, what the server problems are.
Roughly an hour ago, there was a breakthrough that I was able to document. I won't go into the details, however it seems that the security of the Beehaw server is better than it has ever been.
Thank you all for your patience and I hope to resolve any further issues.