Thoughts on fostering healthy communication

This post is a continuation of my previous post: Just thinking out loud

When we speak of relationships at the workplace or communication between colleagues, the first thing that most of us imagine are cubicles and traditional boss-employee and suit-and-tie images. This is very different from the constantly changing realities on the virtual and digital workspace. NEAR is building a web-3 economy, in a way every individual - from OWS contributors to the NEAR core developers are colleagues, working towards the same end - making NEAR thrive as a blockchain and $NEAR reaching the coveted top 20 on CoinMarketCap (poor sense of humor I know).

Some unbecoming and unpleasant events from the past few months have made me ponder. Why do we have forum kerfuffles? Why are we not empathetic any more?

Some individuals derive pleasure in “naming and shaming” others instead of adopting a reconciliatory, empathetic approach. Asking questions to recipient of funds is completely normal but accusing them of being “scammers” is in no way justifiable. We have had several instances of pseudonymous (or anon) accounts jousting and throwing shade at fellow ecosystem contributors like individuals, guilds, Marketing DAO council members and even Foundation members. While it may be normal for “transparency seekers”, they often forget that others can get deeply tormented emotionally by these acts of fanatic vigilantism. It takes just one minute of trolling or accusations on the forum to ruin someone’s confidence for the entire month. The amount of harm these things can cause to a person’s mental health and social recognition is something that can’t be quantified.

The new modus operandi seems to be posting a quote on transparency in an attempt to belittle contributors while conveniently ignoring the same person’s quote on Right to Silence (which by the way is also enshrined in almost all constitutions and legal frameworks in the world) to avoid escalating conflicts. There seems to be no middle ground when interacting with these “digilantes” as they are adamant on proving themselves right. Making a mountain out of a molehill. This drives people away from the forum and discourages them from posting on the forum where they feel they are constantly being observed by an “Orwellian surveillance camera”.

Suggestions: The benchmark for assessing performance, appreciating efforts and rewarding contributions need to be effectively communicated to all stakeholders. Unless someone is outright escaping responsibility, showing palpable lack of reliability and dilly-dallying on their reporting and communications - no one should be subjected to these insane public court martials.

Posting private information that is not related to the forum and attempting to breach someone’s privacy by hiding behind the veil of transparency in order to intimidate someone on a public forum is always detrimental. Doxxing attempts need to be condemned by one and all - we had one today which prompted my first post and the doxx post was cleverly deleted by the author within minutes.

How do such acts add value to the public discourse about NEAR? Forum is supposed to be the place where everyone feels like home, not threatened. Is this the impression we want to send to those outside the NEAR ecosystem - an impression of being insecure about our own contributors, portraying distrust amongst individuals?

While everyone agrees that moderation is absolutely necessary and vigilance even more so but it needs to be done in an appropriate manner by the appropriate persons without letting anons start a circus in the name of accountability. We have bad actors in every space and its a problem that will never be resolved. Which is precisely why we have firewalls and other off-chain measures in place. Building offline relations with as many people as possible (even external to the ecosystem), expanding your social and professional network is probably the most important of all values in this ecosystem. NEAR embodies mutual respect. This is what sets us apart from maxis. The formal collective output we produce on-chain is directly proportional to our level of informal engagement and interactions off-chain.

Opportunities are open to everyone in this space. Nothing is gifted to anyone. Someone getting a role/opportunity is almost always a result of their proactiveness and ability to adapt accordingly (not saying announcing job opportunities is not important. It undoubtedly is and the more people we reach out to the better). Web-3 moves at light-speed, people would not want to wait for others when they have someone in their network ready to offer their services. Always questioning hiring or recruitment of someone is hence a double-edged sword.

What needs to be asked is how do we generate more opportunities for everyone? Learning from each other, educating people about the dynamics of this space is the way to go. Not by interrogating those who are working to build this space.

While it is prudent and absolutely reasonable for stakeholders to see that contributors bring the most bang for the buck, it needs to be communicated effectively with good intentions and by those who value empathy. What’s needed is studying what’s working and what’s not working and then guiding people to the roles that are best suited for them. We need to understand others instead of asserting ourselves.

These are all avoidable with empathy. This will probably end up being one of those rant posts hence moving it to Uncategorized. Honestly aggrieved but optimistic. Peace!

Ok, I got you. Another one planned attack from “closed club” on me, because I fight for transparency and access to opportunities for everyone here. Nothing new. I’m strong and ready for another portion of negative comments and bullying. Good luck

I think instead of humiliate me again, you need to start improving your guild and first-of-all, think about your community members. Do your work transparent and open for great Near community.

Great examples of transparency and work with community: Marma J (my favorite #1 community, fantastic work with members, opens for everyone),
NxM (awesome hardworking guild manager, absolutely Music and Near lover),Kitchen Gulid (two great guys who established high standards of transparency, super effective work with YouTube influencers), Merchants of Near (incredible progress in October, wow, respect and kudos to guild leadership), OWS (rapid reaction and response), Human guild (legends, making future) CUDO Dao, ect.

Unfortunately, some guilds still works not transparent, but I hope will improve it soon.

Quick reminder about transparency policy:

Thanks

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Hey hey!

Some great points raised here :100:

I’d like to take (another) moment to encourage everyone to review and utilise the NEAR Forum Guidelines:

There is no room for toxicity, if a comment is out of line or violates the Guidleines **please ** use the flag function which is built into the Forum.

Transparency is built into the core of how every open-source ecosystem, including NEAR, operates. It’s not optional, it’s essential.

Now, that being said, this can give way to trolls. However, it’s how we handle them which defines the nature of the Forum (and wider ecosystem). Admins receive relatively few reports for inappropriate behaviour on the forum, and those we do receive (or find ourselves) are actioned.

I think this might be a little out of context. If a project, guild, or individual is receiving funding through the forum then it’s expected that they are kept accountable.

Always! This is extremely serious. Please report posts like this to administrators. We have access to deleted posts and action can and will be taken.

There’s a very fine line to be tread here, IMO. I think, sometimes, tough questions might be misinterpreted as attacks.

Just to reiterate (because it’s super important):

There are admins and moderators actively monitoring the forum almost 24/7. I, personally, read every thread here. Please don’t hesitate to use the reporting functions as and when they are needed.

I don’t agree with this, in fact it’s almost the inverse. Yes, we need to distribute NEAR responsibly however we do not need to run the Community Fund or other initiatives like a cut throat business. This isn’t Wall St (thankfully) and we should be comfortable slightly ‘overpaying’ for everyone’s wonderful efforts :muscle:

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