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jonsblond's avatar

How would the moderators know if a user is being deceitful and deceptive?

Asked by jonsblond (36885 points ) December 10th, 2013

http://www.fluther.com/help/guidelines/important/

In the guidelines it mentions that deceitful and deceptive activity is unacceptable everywhere on Fluther, and will be removed.

Can you give examples of deceitful and deceptive activity? How would you be aware of this activity?

I can only think of one user who was banned for this reason. Does it happen often?

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

61 Answers

KNOWITALL's avatar

Supposedly they read pm’s but that’s heresay. I have no other ideas.

Seek's avatar

Only Auggie can read PMs.

Deceitful and Deceptive is the clause that was quoted when I brought up my idea of creating a sock puppet to play the other side of debates I usually take part in on this site. It would cause other people to look at my sock puppet character as a real person, when it was simply, well, me on the other side, playing a part.

DWW25921's avatar

Ok, if I said I was a doctor and gave advice on that premise I would be full of crap. I think that’s what the rule refers to. I mean, pretending you’re something you’re not is grounds for removal and frankly rightly so. If I were to say that I’m a Christian, a staunch libertarian and at one time played gleefully or both teams and gave advice along those lines, that would be fine because it’s true. I’ve been accused of misrepresenting myself because my life has been very strange up to this point and I have a lot of eccentric experiences. I try my hardest to go out of my way not to judge but if something seems out of place or smells of a lie I’ll speak up or tattle to the moderators like a schoolyard brat. It’s just my way.

El_Cadejo's avatar

Most trolls kinda suck at being consistent in their stories, it generally gets noticed pretty quickly.

talljasperman's avatar

Claiming to be an extra-terrestrial seems o.k.

glacial's avatar

I seem to recall that there were a few people banned for that reason. I think they were all for multiple accounts and/or lurve gaming, but there might also have been a phony doctor. I guess only @augustlan knows for sure. Perhaps she’ll enlighten us.

As to how it gets discovered – I suspect weird behaviour would be noticed by regulars, and they would ask the mods to investigate. I don’t believe that it has anything to do with PMs. My understanding is that PMs are only read if the recipient of an “unappreciated” PM reports it as abuse.

Seek's avatar

There was definitely a phony doctor.

Effin’ perv.

drhat77's avatar

There’s actually a lie detector button that appears by each post when you have a mod account. I’m familiar with the framework they built this site on.

janbb's avatar

Multiple user names from the same IP address. Suspicions aroused when idiots get lots of lurve. :-)

Blondesjon's avatar

I don’t believe they can.

After all, they haven’t figured out that I’m you yet.

drhat77's avatar

Hey, @janbb , that Doctor idiots-who-gets-lots-of-lurve to you!

janbb's avatar

@drhat77 I said nothing about doctors!

glacial's avatar

@Seek_Kolinahr Yes, but I’m not sure whether he was banned or just left before he got caught. :/

drhat77's avatar

@janbb it’s a joke I do to insinuate that you were insulting me directly

Seek's avatar

Pretty sure he was banned shortly after I complained about his recurring involvement in questions regarding the menstrual habits of young teenagers, and offering to private message them with more details

glacial's avatar

@Seek_Kolinahr Ah – I couldn’t remember if there was an actual complaint or not. Good job.

YARNLADY's avatar

Sometimes they brag on other forums that they fooled everyone on Fluther. That is a big giveaway.

rojo's avatar

They send a PM and ask “Are you being deceitful or deceptive?” If the person answers in a positive manner, they delete it.

ucme's avatar

The stench of a failed imagination oozes through the screen like a smelly, oozey thing.

janbb's avatar

@rojo That is very ironic.

@drhat77 It was a joke I was doing too.

Seek's avatar

I think @rojo just created a singularity.

janbb's avatar

@Seek_Kolinahr Is that the term for all those truth teller and liar country puzzles that make my brain ache?

Seek's avatar

Sort of.

A physical paradox creates a singularity. @rojo just did a verbal paradox.

“Are you lying?”
“Yes”

^ Is he lying or not lying?

janbb's avatar

Yes – and that is the exact paradox in those kind of puzzles.

DWW25921's avatar

@Seek_Kolinahr You know a lot of very big words.

jonsblond's avatar

@YARNLADY Sometimes they brag on other forums that they fooled everyone on Fluther.

It’s funny that they think they have fooled everyone. Some of these deceitful users don’t try hard enough with their lies. Some are pretty easy to figure out.

glacial's avatar

@jonsblond I thought from reading your question that you must have thought the opposite!

DWW25921's avatar

As a moderator myself, and a doctor who free lances as a government spy, I would think it would be easy to spot a lie. It’s a simple matter of deduction. I learned all about that when I was a private investigator. You see, lies tend to compound into the realm of absolute bull hockey and it’s easy to spot. Usually the folks that brag the most fantastic stuff have the least to brag about.

jonsblond's avatar

@glacial I asked how the moderators would know. I was also hoping for examples of deceitful and deceptive activity. When should a user complain if they think another user is being deceptive? These are the things I’m curious about.

glacial's avatar

@jonsblond Oh, I see – I think I totally misunderstood your question.

DWW25921's avatar

@jonsblond I have personally reported SPAM on a few occasions. If a person asks a question, for example, and the answer is in a link in the comment section that’s a big red flag. Usually using a new account. There are double teeming spammers too. One guy will ask a question and another will answer it with whatever they are advertising. Always from new accounts. Example;

(newguy1) Where can I get a great new shirt for the holidays?

(newguy2) Here’s a link for a great store! blabla @ blabla. com

poisonedantidote's avatar

I used to be a pirate.

thorninmud's avatar

It usually comes out in the waterboarding.

augustlan's avatar

If anyone suspects that a member is being deceptive/deceitful in a way that hurts the Fluther community, they can PM me and I’ll look into it. Basically, it comes down to this: We don’t mind if someone embellishes a little, but we won’t allow anyone to hurt this community with their lies. We’ve banned several people for it.

Examples of this kind of behavior:

Pretending to be a doctor: This guy seemed overly involved in certain medical discussions revolving around young girls. He claimed to be a doctor in these discussions, but had claimed to hold other professional titles in other discussions. Concerned members brought it to our attention. I think we found he was claiming 8 different professions (simultaneously), and I know we discovered inappropriate PMs to the most recent young girl who had asked a medical question.

Pretending to be several different people simultaneously, each with a noticeable presence on Fluther, and each with (completely different) fully developed personalities and back stories: (While we allow members to ask/answer questions on a secondary account for anonymity purposes, we don’t allow people to make up elaborate ‘lives’ for those accounts and form active relationships with members under false pretenses.) This one we stumbled onto completely by accident. It turned out that he’d also used his multiple accounts to lurve himself. He was gaming the lurve system and the entire community, too.

There was a guy whose life story just kept getting more and more fantastical, drawing the community in and eventually freaking lots of members out. He was suspected of being a major bullshitter for a long time, but we had no evidence until he posted a picture of his ‘late wife’...and it turned out to be a stock image he’d lifted from the web. When confronted, he admitted it was all a fantasy life. There’s no harm in a little fantasy, I suppose, but this was a huge dramatic story, and caused a lot of upset in the community…all for his own entertainment.

There was a young woman who entered into online romances (serious ones) with several of our male members, using fake names/back stories/pictures. One of the pictures was used twice, under two different names, with two different male members. Concerned friends compared notes, and she was busted. She broke several hearts.

janbb's avatar

Now I’m really curious! I only know two of the four.

Mama_Cakes's avatar

Know of all but the last one.

jonsblond's avatar

Wow! Thank you for taking the time to answer @augustlan.

glacial's avatar

@augustlan My question is… do all of the member’s accounts get deleted when it’s a multiple personality gig? Or do we have to keep wondering if that person is among us?

janbb's avatar

OK! OK! I confess! I am not really a penguin! Now, do your worst!!

ucme's avatar

Only one I knew of was creepydoc, can’t understand why anyone would live out a fantasy/bullshit lie of that magnitude on a Q&A site.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@ucme More time than brains apparently…lol

muppetish's avatar

@glacial From what I understand, if a user is found out to be deceiving to the community to the negative magnitude that @augustlan‘s examples suggest, all of their accounts will be disabled and they will likely be permanently banned (“banned for life”.) They might attempt to create a new account on a new/proxy IP (and we’ve had our suspicions..), but it is unlikely that most trolls would go to that length.

rojo's avatar

Wow, @augustlan people actually take the time to do all that stuff?

and I get miffed for being modded because I am third-eye blind, guess I should count my blessings. And would, if I could see them.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@rojo Did you see my post, just put a crystal on your forehead, it’s supposed to help open that third eye. ;)

Cupcake's avatar

If users get banned for being actively deceptive, I think their usernames should be posted somewhere. Maybe a blog post. God forbid I follow the advice of an anonymous internet person who is claiming to be a doctor.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@Cupcake True. I respect rarebear and everything, but in most cases I trust my own doctor for medical decisions. Except the flu shot that rarebear shamed me into getting this year- lol

augustlan's avatar

@glacial Yes, we ban all of the accounts.

@Cupcake That’s a good point. We’ve always been very tight-lipped about who gets banned (and why), to protect people’s privacy, but I can see where members might need protection from bad medical advice. If I’m remembering correctly, though, the fake doctor dude didn’t give dangerous medical answers. His ‘medical advice’ was basically benign…it’s just that he used it as a way to make inappropriate contact with minors. Ick.

Cupcake's avatar

@augustlan That’s disgusting.

I’m mostly curious, but I really do feel that if people are deceiving the community, we (might) have a right to know. Even the guy who got his dead wife’s blessing to marry her niece. Those of us who (initially) cared about him got dragged into his lies (for example, because he’s the only one of your examples I know about). I don’t think future members should be able to get dragged in as well.

augustlan's avatar

It’s definitely something to think about.

KNOWITALL's avatar

Meh, I think it’s more a ‘buyer a beware’ situation personally. More than likely everyone here has ‘deceived the community’ about something at some point, it’s a human foible, making themselves look better than they are for respect or friends. Maybe I’m just skeptical of everyone…lol, yep, I am.

YARNLADY's avatar

There’s also the recurring pev who asks questions about airplane pants all the time.

glacial's avatar

@YARNLADY I must have missed that one, lol.

DWW25921's avatar

My problem is that people think I contradict myself a lot. But I don’t! I’m a Christian libertarian tree hugging nature lover that believes that coal can be harnessed as the fuel of the future. I’m a staunch young earth creationist who can’t make an argument to save my life and was an English major who can’t spell either. I had a brief drag queen phase in the early 90’s. I don’t trust government agencies at all but tend to appreciate the work and professionalism of local cops. I am against abortion which admittedly contradicts Libertarianism. I’m an avid dog person with 3 cats. I am, for the most part, pro-union. All of these things, and so much more, are absolutely true!

I think I’ve mentioned all that stuff at one time or another here. I’ve just never put it all in one place before. I’ve had people on sites call me a liar on a fairly regular basis. I may be standing in jello but at least I know where I stand!

All that just to say, don’t be quick to judge. The person in question may just be very strange, and come by it honestly. When I first came to this site every question I tried to ask was moderated. I suppose I’m in the club now… I reckon.

In any event, I give people chances. We shouldn’t worry about it until we know for a fact that we are being lied to or messed with. When we know one way or the other we should take proper action. Anyway, my points were weak and I rambled a bit but you probably get the idea. If not, have a great day anyway!

jonsblond's avatar

Thanks for your ramble. I read every bit @DWW25921. I’m usually the first person to stand up for those who are being accused of being a troll. There are times when I am right and the person isn’t a troll, but many times I’m wrong and everyone else is right. So you can say I believe in giving chances, but there are times when the lies are so obvious, it’s difficult to ignore.

DWW25921's avatar

@jonsblond Yes. I’ll totally buy that.

snowberry's avatar

I’m the tooth fairy. Taking orders now!

jonsblond's avatar

I have a bone to pick with you tooth fairy. Why did my daughter’s friend get a One Direction book and $5 but my daughter only got $3 and no One Direction book? It’s not fair!

snowberry's avatar

@jonsblond Hey, I’m not the FAIRy, I’m the Fairy. Big difference there. And besides, there’s the Union. So…

DWW25921's avatar

@snowberry As the tooth fairy I’m sure you take special cases… Do you do extractions? I don’t expect any money from you and I’ll leave a PEZ dispenser for ya!

johnpowell's avatar

I think I know of the last example augustlan cited. It was beyond fucked up. Like they guy gave the woman a ton of money and a plane ticket to Europe. He was pretty active in the chatroom until this all went down.

snowberry's avatar

@johnpowell Hmmm, well, I’ll consider trading a wisdom tooth for a vintage PEZ dispenser!

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