|Perl Monk, Perl Meditation|
Wow. This thread has run way too long (but has provided value -- I just learned about all the Orders). Anyway, if anyone is still reading, here's my proposal for a solution (I'm replying to tye because I trust he will read it, consider it, and pass the idea around as appropriate):
Let there be a "policy" established among the folks who are or become members of "Power Users" (guardians of the CB):
When you /borg someone who is a registered member of the monastery, you should, as soon as possible, /msg that person as follows: "You have been temporarily blocked from the chat box, because your recent posts are Stepping Outside the Bounds of Acceptable Discourse. Take a break, maybe eat something, and reply to this message when you feel ready to return, or if you need further information. -- Sincerely, The Management."
There should be no need for such diplomacy when dealing with anonymous trolls. Also, it should be sufficient that the person taking this action speak for all Power Users, and that replies to this notice be directed (accessible) to all Power Users.
This is intended as a sort of compromise: maintaining accountability among Power Users is an obvious need, and providing direct communication between Power Users (as a group) and the scolded monk should meet that need. But requiring that each individual Power User declare him/herself personally to the scolded monk does not serve any essential good, and at the moment when the monk in question is behaving badly, it's just as likely to increase damage to both parties.
(I guess the only hole in the proposal is enforcement: how to make sure the notice is always sent?)
update: (made some minor adjustments above -- grammar, added link in the proposed notice -- and... ) It may be a better compromise, from some people's point of view, if the notice is copied to the CB, as well as being addressed (/msg) to the /borgee. As pointed out elsewhere on this thread, comparing who's logged in and who the Power Users are will often give enough evidence to peg the /borger (to the extent that it matters at that moment); but it's important that the /borger announce the action with a Voice of Authority (the "official signature") -- for the same reason that it's a good idea for cops to wear uniforms and drive specially-marked cars. And of course, making the action "public" in the CB will give "the Community" a chance to voice their reactions (support for one side or the other, or puzzlement), for all to see (including the borgee).
But none of this for anonymous trolls -- I mean, "initiates" who just created their accounts earlier the same day. It could egg them on to worse offenses; just shut'em up and be done with'em.