I mean whether or not there are exists more powerful users which have ability to check, for example, some IP statistics, to list user-ids that have same e-mail address, and based on that information place someones into some kind of black list.

If such ability exist, do they sometimes perform any repressions to users who are worse than others?

Thank you.

PS. I hope this quiestion will not lead massive downvoting. But I'm not afraid if this will do - it's my only node here :)

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Re: Does users are analyzed?
by Petruchio (Vicar) on Jun 12, 2002 at 22:09 UTC

    This seems like a good opportunity to clarify some matters which may be of interest to the community at large. This will be reposted to a faqlet later.

    The site gods have full access to the database, the site code, and the server logs for PerlMonks. Hence, in principle, there is not much they could not do. Other special user groups, such as the editors and power users, have powers which can affect other users, but these powers are constrained by the mechanisms though which the powers are used. Such constraints are not possible for gods, who must often deal with the database directly in the course of development. As far as I am aware, this is the case for the management of virtually all web boards.

    On the other hand, it is by far most common even for gods to use handy web-based tools for dealing with site maintenance, and few of these tools would be useful in user tracking. In some instances, provisions have been made to shield sensitive user information from casual inspection; when I must look at a user's variables (an unusual, but not an extraordinary circumstance), for instance, it would be awkward to have the user's password displayed along with the rest. Thus the tool has been altered so as not report the password.

    In short, there are no rock-solid safeguards for your personal information or your habits. You should understand this, and make your decisions accordingly.

    So much for what can be done. What is done is (assuming you take my word for it) a bit different.

    The things which tend to attract the interest of the gods are abusive behavior and votebots. Both the gods and the power users have the ability to temporarily silence people in the Chatterbox, and do so from time to time. This tends to happen seldom, and in response to serious insults or profanity. A reasonably extensive system has been put in place to allow site users to filter for inappropriate content in posts, and though it still happens from time to time, it is seldom necessary for gods to intervene directly. The editors also have some power here, and are able to alter posts or vote for "fast track" deletion. The former happens on a regular basis, though far more often to correct errors than abusive behavior. The latter is customary as a suppliment to the consideration process.

    In terms of tracking users, the gods do perform some analyses of records. These are mostly anonymous, thanks to a set of scripts which ar0n has devised, allowing us to single out users with highly unusual use patterns, without having to look at other users' data. In case anyone's not aware at this point, votebots are not permitted on PerlMonks... and while no votebot accounts have been closed yet, they may be in the future.

    Overall, it's simply a matter of trust. In my experience, the gods have an ethic which reflects the site's tradition of voluntary self-restraint, and respect for others. In my opinion, the other active gods are trustworthy, principled people. I am happy to tell you that I have no interest in your voting record, as it applies to me or to anyone else. I cannot prove it, however. You must use your own judgement, and decide how open a community you think this is, and whether it's the sort of place you're willing to spend your time.

Re: Does users are analyzed?
by chromatic (Archbishop) on Jun 12, 2002 at 22:05 UTC

    To answer your direct question, yes, the gods do have supreme abilities on the site. We can modify any code, read the database, and even log in to the raw database and the live servers.

    However, to become a god, you have to be witty, intelligent, trustworthy, generally above reproach, and possessing a great deal of knowledge as to how the entire system works, as well as institutional knowledge about how the site has evolved.

    Of all of the people who meet these criteria, I'm not aware of a single one who cares about XP, the occasional downvote, or even a few off-topic nodes here and there.

    If you abuse the system, though, there may indeed be repurcussions. To my knowledge, this has never been necessary. (I do know that several respected monks -- who are not necessarily gods -- will find it extremely distasteful that you use multiple accounts.)

    If you read and follow the Perl Monks FAQ, you'll have no trouble.

Re: Does users are analyzed?
by VSarkiss (Monsignor) on Jun 12, 2002 at 23:18 UTC

    I said it before, I'll say it again: XP doesn't matter. The only thing of yours that is under the control of other people (i.e., what you do not personally choose to share) is your experience level.

    Here's a scenario to consider.

    I wake up one morning in a crabby mood. I post a Meditation saying "merlyn is an ignoramus. vroom abuses children and small animals. All you people stink." The node is downvoted into oblivion. I do it again, this time insulting tye and Ovid. I take over all of Worst Nodes. My XP begins to rival antivroom's.

    The next morning, I get up, get dressed, go to work, write programs, pay my bills. You know what? Things haven't changed much.

    Eventually I come back and start answering questions and writing bad Perl Poetry. People upvote it. I write an Obfuscation to rival Erudil's. I find my way to Best Nodes over and over. Slowly my XP rises again. I displace vroom at the top of Other Users. There is much cheering and rejoicing in the Chatterbox.

    The next morning, I get up, get dressed, go to work, write programs, pay my bills. I take my million XP to Starbucks and they still charge me $1.40 for a cup of coffee.

    It's not the XP that counts, it's the interaction with your peers. Give up the attitude and write some Perl. Learn and teach. Be gracious. That's the ultimate goal of the site.

Re: Does users are analyzed?
by vroom (His Eminence) on Jun 12, 2002 at 20:51 UTC
Re: Does users are analyzed?
by coreolyn (Parson) on Jun 12, 2002 at 22:08 UTC

    Why use multiple accounts when Anonymous Monk is available?

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Re: Does users are analyzed?
by herveus (Prior) on Jun 13, 2002 at 13:48 UTC

    I didn't downvote the root node, because the question, while ignorant (in the technical, non-pejorative sense), was vaguely reasonable. The "PS" revealed a serious lack of confidence...

    Subsequent replies support the contention that Chicken is slow to pick up the clues. Their tone and content earned -- from me.

    Chicken: relax. Don't worry. Ask real questions and let the chips fall where they may. XP doesn't count for much.


(RhetTbull) Re: Does users are analyzed?
by RhetTbull (Curate) on Jun 12, 2002 at 20:35 UTC
    Who care? Why does it matter? Are you planning on abusing perlmonks?
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