In direct response to the disorderly firing of Monica Cellio and the increasing distrust in SE policies and tone shift towards the community as a whole, all the mods of BSE have recorded themselves as "Inactive."
What does that mean? We will be non-active except for critical cases.
Our protest is completely independent of the LGBTIQAP+ debate this issue now has spiraled into. The community's present heightened state of disapproval and mistrust of SE stems from two massively unpopular actions SE took within a short time frame:
- The spontaneous de-modding of Monica Cellio, and by large the community as a whole after the fact.
- The pronoun change in the Code of Conduct, the FAQ for pronoun usage, and SE's handling of the community's response.
To be 100% clear, we (the mods of BSE) are inactive in protest of the way Monica Cellio was de-modded.
On Sept 18th mods got a hint that there would be a upcoming CoC pronoun change (this was in a mod only chat room). Monica held the opinion that the singular they is grammatically incorrect and would not refer to someone as "they".
Monica had a further correspondence with SE via email.
On Sept 27th Monica's moderator privileges were removed - without any warning.
To make matters worse SE maligned Monica on meta, in responses on child metas, on twiter, and in the media.
On Oct 6th SE issued an apology saying they treated Monica wrongly.
Then on Oct 11th a working draft of the new "Moderator Warning, Removal & Reinstatement Processes." was released for moderators. This rubbed salt into the still fresh wound. Under the new processes there is no circumstance where Monica would have been removed in the way she was.
Whether or not you agree with SE that Monica violated the CoC, the issue still stands that she was removed without due process. This could have happened to any of us at any time for the same or a similar reasons. It's pretty frustrating to think that the sacrifices and years that went into growing one's community, curating it, welcoming new users, handling hundreds if not thousands of flags can be gone in an instant in such a manner and as such we have decided to join the dozens of moderators in making a stand.
There is an unprecedented level of anger, mistrust, frustration and fear across the network. Never before have we seen users create open letters to Stack Exchange or see meta posts with -1000 and lower scores. Never before has a mod been removed like this. We are in uncharted waters here and I truly hope SE can sort all this out before we reach a point of no return.
While we are late in mustering a response, we hope that the collective voices of us the moderators across the network do have an impact which will be heard by SE. The reason for our protest is two fold:
- To visibly add our voice to the outcry against SE's actions.
- To show support for Monica Cellio. I can not imagine how rough these past few weeks must have been.