Re: Rules & Regs Violation
From: Fillard Rhyne (
Date: Tue, 11 Apr 2006 12:37:19 -0700 (PDT)
Ken and Thomas have brought up some good points -- e.g., rules work best when 
there are very good reasons for them, and there are clear benefits to a 
non-restrictive approach.

That said, the whole point of having a rule is to express a *decision* -- an 
agreement -- that the community members have made in the past and are therefore 
responsible for following in the present. If someone feels a rule should be 
changed, the burden should fall to them to bring it to the community membership 
(or to an appropriate committee or whatever), make a good case, and inspire a 
new decision.

What sometimes happens instead is someone effectively says, "I'm going to 
violate this agreement until another community member sacrifices their valuable 
time dredging up the necessary arguments and convincing me that the agreement 
is a good one." That puts the burden in the wrong place. Making a decision 
should *settle* a matter so people can get on with their lives rather than 
constantly get dragged back into old discussions.

It _is_ good to explain things and to answer questions so that people can 
understand why things are the way they are and hopefully be at peace (or 
suggest changes).

(Anne -- With regard to your original question, it sounds like Rob and Ann have 
some useful ideas for looking at community values and exploring whether the 
satellite dish is merely a symptom of a deeper problem -- important to know and 
deal with -- and Sharon has a good idea for creating a bottom-line enforcement 
mechanism. I'm not sure I have anything to add.)


"We demand rigidly defined areas of doubt and uncertainty!"
- The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

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