41

I'm done.

This has been a long time in coming.

I don't know if this is for good or if I'm just going to stay away until the new year. I'll decide just how final this goodbye is at that point.

Part of it is that Real life writes the plot as my personal life has far too much going on right now, and very little of it good.

A healthy chunk of it is that I no longer see the point or the fun in being part of this any longer.

This is not a rage quit but the end result of months of consideration. The recent changes to the site's policies that have become clandestine and inconsistent are a major part of it. The fact that the administration's attitude is "if you don't like it, leave" is also a major factor and I've decided to take the latter option, as those are the only two offered.

I find no small irony in the fact that the efforts to become "more welcoming" have had the opposite effect. I've noticed that since February, the various stacks, including this one have had a level of rudeness that has been increasing to the point where I have had more flags approved in the past six months than in the prior two years.

The site seems to be going for quantity over quality, which again takes the fun out of it.

Additionally, the recent departures of several lynchpins of this site for various reasons also plays a factor. All of them, save one have posted their reasons in here, so I see no benefit in rehashing them. Suffice it to say that I agree with their reasons and have my own as well, some of which I am not at liberty to discuss, as I have no inclination to have to defend those reasons, and making them public would invite such a discussion.

I have been accused of being angry over a few things here. That is not the case. I am disappointed. I am saddened by some of the developments, but not angry. I cannot help but feel that any concerns I raise are being dismissed as being rants, and that any I raise are falling on deaf ears because of that fact. That is frustrating and has instilled a sense of futility in me that I cannot overcome.

Part of my reason for leaving is admittedly my rigid thinking. I find that I cannot fit my thoughts into the new rules that SE is implementing and therefore cannot post what I mean to say, and it makes me feel dishonest to try.

Another significant reason is health wise, this place is not good for me.

Lastly, there are some personality clashes going on which I can no longer tolerate. I am not going to name names, but there are some people in positions of power that I believe are misusing it. To them, I say. Be careful of what you say, it always gets back to the person you are talking about.

I will miss this place and the people I've met here, but I no longer feel particularly welcome by the powers that be, which saddens me because I do feel a kinship with most of the user base and because of my somewhat unusual life can offer numerous perspectives that others may not be able to provide, especially in blue collar work, autism, and people with disabilities.

Again, this is not a rage quit, and I hold no grudges or ill will towards anyone. It is my sincerest hope that SE will prosper and thrive. I simply can no longer contribute, at least not at this time.

  • No worries, part of the issue is maybe with a community like this it's important to "see and feel" the real people contributing so much to the community. We just see usernames, upvotes, downvotes, discussions, arguments etc. No problem dude, I can't even tell if I've interacted with you, that's one of the "dehumanised" aspects of such a large Stack network now, I guess. – SaltySub2 Sep 11 '18 at 6:04
  • The instant downvotes do cast a pall on matters when people are yearning to help and discuss. – SaltySub2 Sep 11 '18 at 6:07
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    I am not an active member of this SE, just a lurker, but I have to agree that the direction that SE as company is headed in at the moment is worrysome (to me), to say the least. I've enjoyed your contributions a lot, and I'm sad that I will not be able to read more of them for the time being, but I fully understand the reasons for your "departure". Best of luck out there. – Seth Sep 11 '18 at 8:44
  • Take care of yourself Richard. Sad to see you go sir. – Lumberjack Sep 11 '18 at 12:40
  • 8
    I'm sorry we're losing you (at least for a bit), but you have to do what's best for you. If you're willing, I would find it helpful if you could clarify where you're talking about SE in general and when you're talking about The Workplace. We can't necessarily do much about SE-wide stuff, but the community can try to address issues that are specific to this site. Thanks and I hope we'll see you again. – Monica Cellio Sep 12 '18 at 2:02
  • Totally agree about the level of rudeness. It seems like the most "useful" voted suggested improvements are to the tune of "your question is stupid and you're stupid for asking it." Not sure if this is likely to change as long as the constant flow of positive reinforcement is still there. I've even been guilty of it myself but I'm trying to do better. – AffableAmbler Sep 13 '18 at 22:37
  • Richard, under a different account, you helped me so much. I truly wish you the best -- in a place of so many random names, yours is one of 2 I will always remember. You came across as a class act, and many people will be saddened by the loss of your presence. Stay healthy -- your wellbeing comes before any site. It's too bad that after all your contribution to this site, this is the end result. Farewell sir. – A quiet hum Sep 17 '18 at 21:58
23

Very sorry to see you go. Your contributions will be sorely missed. Hopefully things in your real life take a sharp turn for the better.

We have not always agreed, but your side of the argument was fair and rational and you were never unjustly rude to me. As a matter of fact you were very helpful in my early days and for that I am grateful.

Best of luck to you.

17

Take care my friend.

It's been an honor getting to know you over the last years.

11

I somehow knew this was you when I saw the title at the sidebar.

Sorry to see you go. I wish you luck with all your personal stuff, and of course a speedy recovery.

We'll continue fighting a rearguard action to get the Stack we want to see, but frankly it's a losing battle :)

Good luck in your new adventures. You will be missed.

10

Take it easy mate, best of luck with wherever your journey goes.

5

Good luck, and all the best to you in the future - your contributions and insight here will most definitely be missed.

4

Sorry to see you go Richard. It's been a pleasure getting to know you and I hope things start looking up for you in life and health.

You have my email address if you want to keep in touch.

-6

As a new user, sometimes it seems like each subsite has its own 3 core users who answer the majority of questions (and often get upvoted base on name value). Since I recognize your name, you are one of those people. A Q&A site functions best when the questions are answered by a large and diverse group of people, not the same 3 people over and over again (hello IPS, hello workplace, etc).

So nothing personal, but this should increase the variety of answers this site has to offer, thus improving overall quality of the site. I know you see the people who left as epic lynchpins!, but I see them as the same few entrenched people answering questions over and over again.

So rather than saying goodbye to the old slime mold that has been growing behind the fridge for the past several years, why don't we say hello to the new spores floating in the window who will themselves infect this area in the near future. Hello!

  • 8
    Are you implying that the mere existence of these power users' answers suppresses different voices? I think people here can and do upvote based on the content, not the user name. And if they disagree with these "lynchpins", they write their own answers. I'm not sure how one can reach the conclusion that having fewer people contributing somehow increases either the quality or the variety of the answers. – xiaomy Sep 14 '18 at 18:58
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    No, I'm saying you say goodbye (to old power users), I say hello (to new blood). – Jamie Clinton Sep 14 '18 at 19:00
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    I explicitly mentioned that having more variety increases the quality of the answers. Old lynchpins leaving, perhaps ironically, increases the variety of answers. – Jamie Clinton Sep 14 '18 at 19:01
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    Can you elaborate? Do people in the past refrain from adding answers because of the "old lynchpins"? – xiaomy Sep 14 '18 at 19:03
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    I see the same users over and over again on the same sites. They always get upvoted. They don't offer answers that are superior to other users. What they do is water down the answers by being so quickly upvoted. – Jamie Clinton Sep 14 '18 at 19:04
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    Variety and a larger user base are good, but I can't agree that users who've contributed a lot of value to the site are in the same category as slime mold. Perhaps you could reword that part? – Monica Cellio Sep 14 '18 at 23:11
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    @MonicaCellio I thought it was a good, if irreverent, analogy. A user joining an internet community is like a fungus spore floating in through the window. You find the type of garbage that you like and you consume the heck out of it. – Jamie Clinton Sep 14 '18 at 23:23
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    "So rather than saying goodbye to the old slime mold that has been growing behind the fridge for the past several years, why don't we say hello to the new spores floating in the window who will themselves infect this area in the near future. " - if you are thinking of me, you got the "old" part right! But "slime mold"? Ouch! Oh well, I've been called worse you young spore! ;-) I'm looking forward to your contributions now. – Joe Strazzere Sep 15 '18 at 0:04
  • @JoeStrazzere Slime Mold can be beautiful if you are a biologist or nature fanatic! – user30031 Sep 15 '18 at 17:05
  • @DoritoStyle - Well I'm not a biologist. I do like nature, but I'm not sure the term "fanatic" would apply. Apparently I'm just old slime mold. Meh. – Joe Strazzere Sep 15 '18 at 17:40
  • I also disagree that the existence of power users suppresses the contribution of newer users. New users can answer whenever they want, and are not limited whatsoever by the existence of higher rep users... Yes, perhaps power users tend to gain some "fans", and it's a bit more likely they will get Upvotes (but if they do it's because of the quality of their answers), but power users also gain some "dislikers", and tend to receive more frequent and intense arguments from many users, specially those dislikers... I also suggest to edit the spore analogy into a more polite example – DarkCygnus Sep 18 '18 at 23:42
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    I appreciate your positive attitude, but I'd also be mindful of assuming more power users means less variety. I've found on IPS that I can only write good answers (sometimes) because of the things I've learned from "power" users. People don't like their answers because they're highly upvoted users; it's the other way around. They're good answers. Being able to look at a few answers from a competent, well spoken user can really help smaller users like us present our varied opinions more effectively, which massively helps the site. I'm sad to see Richard go; I still have a lot to learn from him. – Lord Farquaad Sep 19 '18 at 13:46

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