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You didn't miss that much

And if you think you did, check out User:Hrodulf/Benson;_a_retrospective. The Benson thing is hilarious, but the thing is, he's not actually that bad a guy. Just needs to read the howto file a few times and tough out the rougher edges of the uncyclopedia experience.

Speaking of which, you may or may not be aware that I've been talking about the ban issue with the admins and did manage to add some ban info to the howto file and create a "ban chapel" for people who have been banned to go to put it all in perspective (although really it's mainly for me to use for when I get banned, which has been happening quite a bit lately, actually, as a response to me doing all of this). Here's what I came up with on the ban issue:

If you get banned
You Have No Rights
Forum:Who Admins the Admins?
Forum:Who Uses the Users

Here are the bans I got, mostly for the above links:

"22:23, 9 June 2006 Famine blocked "Hrodulf (contribs)" with an expiry time of 11 minutes (User takes bans too seriously. That's ridiculous. It's not even funny.)" "18:35, 7 June 2006 Tompkins blocked "Hrodulf (contribs)" with an expiry time of 30 seconds (HowTo my ass...)"

There was another ban, but that was for creating a forum topic in the Benson forum without typing it in all caps, so I don't really count that, since it wasn't in response to the ban conversation I was having. I think that if there was really a problem with the ban issue, I'd have been banned a lot longer; this was just a joke, and I think the "If you get banned" addition to the howto article sums up the ban "policy" (or utter lack thereof) pretty well. The point is to have the information out there so it's available. And I don't think there's any problem with telling the truth about how bans are (mis)used here. If some people dislike that, then they can change their behavior, or learn to live with the truth. Sunlight remains the best disinfectant, as always.

There were some new HAL 9000 questions and answers also, one of them was sort of hard, but I think I managed to get it.

I see you got banned also, briefly. Welcome to uncyclopedia.

--Hrodulf 15:20, 10 June 2006 (UTC)

Wow, so I did. Dammit! Now I'll never be awarded an adminship (I was sooo close)... and I was just saying that my soul is really starting to drag me down. All this extra baggage (twenty-one grams worth?) is mighty weighty, ruining the aerodynamics of my articles - guess I'll have to get used to it. Plus I've heard that the secret initiation ritual for adminship has something to do with a coffin, a crowd and masturbation... or was that Skull and Bones? I always get those manipulative, exclusive, idiotic, polarizing, secretive, petty, snide and authoritative Romper Room-style clubs confused. I always love to bear witness to the ugly animal side of human nature: watching lesser primates struggling to exert their dominance is like watching a dog hump a hole in the ground... a dynamic lesson in futility.
Yeah, one of the first things I did upon my return is check out what you've been up to, which is how I found out about Benson, well, the majority of it anyway. I agree that he isn't bad; so far, his escapades have brought a great, much needed levity to this place that is otherwise becoming a lot less humourous. These problems are nothing new - they've been around a lot longer than I have. If you ever want to see the type of fun that regular users are exposed to, check out the smear campaign that was leveled against me during my first month here (I'd provide links but I forget how). Admins creating sockpuppets specifically to vote against me, admins creating sockpuppets to write slanderous articles (well, at least one article) about me, admins accusing me of being some famously notorious Wikipedia personality (which, due to my complete inexperience with wikis at the time, I took as a compliment)... you name it. I was on the verge of leaving and even tried to huff all of the articles I had written before some sensible users, and actually a couple admins, talked me out of it. I am completely over it; I only bring it up to you to illustrate this point: they have convinced themselves that their actions are credible, even admirable. They bring up the fact that they are unpaid volunteers, which in some way is meant to excuse their actions. I am of the mind that the people in power are the people with the most responsibility to be decent and fair. The fact that this is a (supposedly) humourous wiki and not a world government does little to ease my mind that fairness is still a necessary attribute to possess. The best I can hope is that the sensible admins will take notice that the monkeys are driving away good contributors and will finally take action. Short of that, I don't know what can be done. Maybe play a little fiddle.
And I did read the new Ask Hal entries - nice work as always. I was excited to see a wealth of new question-askers, hinting that your brilliance is catching on. Great responses as always! I'd love to see it on the front page with a Hal reskin, but finding an admin to help organize that may be challenging, given the current situation and all. As far as all this goes... don't let any of this affect you too much, nor drive you off. I was tossing around the idea of establishing a wiki within this wiki, the way many users do with their user pages - make a user page that resembles the main page and have our own content, featured articles, forums, etc. Pariahpedia perhaps? Exilepedia? Refugeepedia? Or, what I came up with on another forum: Welcome to Cyclopsopedia, the corruption-free encyclopedia that Euripides can edit. What do you think? --Immy 18:54, 10 June 2006 (UTC)
The whole HAL project was originally supposed to be a reskin, and just became an advice column when I realized I had no clue how to do a reskin. Maybe someday we could try the original idea, but for now, if for no other reason than I don't know enough coding to pull it off, I'll leave it alone.

As for the admins, I find it's enough just to let them know you're not intimidated by them, eventually they seem to catch on that rather than making you look silly, they're actually making themselves look silly instead, and leave you alone. Honestly, if I got banned from this place infinitely, it wouldn't ruin my life. You have to put these things in perspective. This is a website. On the internet. It's just a toy to play with, or a game, or something. Its importance to real life is a matter of the individual. You can make it most of your life, which is probably a bad idea (look at the guy who killed himself over everquest, for example), or you can just treat it like it is: a website.

That being said, it isn't my website, so I can't do whatever I want with it. By the same token, if the Admins have too much power and abuse it, it, de facto, becomes theirs. I would like to think that, somehow, there's some sort of middle ground between those extremes. I'm not here to get into fights over power or make enemies, but I'm also not going to become a groveling sycophant to another human being who hapens to have been promoted here. They're not better than I am, and I'm not better than them (although, for the record, Benson actually is better than me). I'm not going to break any rules, and if they ask me to stop doing certain things that I was doing (like the rather ill-conceived 'new user project' I was trying to do earlier), I'll stop, but if I want to talk openly about all of these issues, such as admin behavior, and the whole issue of content quality via just deleting the "cruft" versus encouraging quality content by teaching n00bs the right way to do it, I'm going to do that, whether it's on talk pages (like now), my user page, or in the forums when I feel it's appropriate. And if that's a problem, it's not my problem. I'd rather get banned from uncyclopedia for life, honestly, than have to keep what I think to myself just because I'm afraid of some admin, because that's what I have to in real life everyday; I can't tell my boss what I really think, or I'll be fired; can't tell my parents what I really think, or they'll hate my guts, can't tell a lot of people what I really think, because of the real life permanent consequences. The worst consequence that can happen to me here is I won't be able to edit a website. Honestly, in perspective, the risk of that seems like a small price to pay for some measure of actual freedom, which is a rare commodity at the present time, particularly in this rather politically backwards country I happen to live in.

I'm glad you like the Ask Hal page, I think people are having fun thinking up tough questions for me, so it's sort of interesting to see the dynamic of "ha ha, he won't be able to answer this in a funny way" and then I have to try to do it anyway. I guess we'll have to see what direction it goes in as time goes by. It's different from Ask Cuthulu, since I don't have the luxury of choosing what questions Hal answers; I have to try to answer all of them. I think it's more fun that way, since I'm not in control of it.

As for the 'make your own' wiki thing, I'd say, why do it on your user page? Lots of people have set up wikis; if you don't like the way uncyclopedia is being run strongly enough to start your own wiki, it probably wouldn't be the first time someone broke off and started their own. I don't know what's involved in starting a wiki, but I think that would work a lot better than trying to wedge one onto your userpage here.

As for adminship, I know I'll never be one, so I don't let it bother me too much. Besides, I don't know enough wiki code and software stuff to be one anyway. And people are too obsessed with status, awards and promotions and such. That's one of the reasons I'm glad Benson came along. He gave me a great opportunity to satirize the awards with the "Benson of the Month" schtick.

For now, I'd say you can't win a fight with an admin, but you don't have to lose either. Just acknowledge that you have a difference of opinion, if it comes to that, and that this is normal, and that it will all work out in time anyway. That's what I do, and it's worked for about two months. And despite the wackiness and erratic admin behaviour, I'd like to think that, barring me ever actually doing something harmful, that there would be some level of awareness that, despite the personality conflicts, arguments over policy, and differences of opinion, I'm really quite harmless, both to their control of the site, and to the site itself. Unless they're actually threatened by someone who isn't afraid of them, in which case, I suppose bannination is inevitable. But if that is the case, why worry about it?--Hrodulf 20:04, 10 June 2006 (UTC)
What a logical and balanced outlook to have - I think Hal is starting to seep into your psyche. Be careful; rationality has no business in this place. No, you are entirely right, of course; we are "mostly harmless" here and it's a bit silly to actually find us threatening. Then again, there does seem to be an abundance of silliness flowin' through these streets... I had to put my waders on. I'll admit, when one of the most talented artists on here (and there are so few true artists) nommed me for n00b my first week, I let it go to my head a bit and felt kinda crushed after the tidal backlash against me; not suicide crushed like that Everquest guy (I hadn't heard about that until you mentioned it and I checked it out... sad stuff) or even questioning my ability crushed. More like faith in finding fair treatment here crushed. But that was the most liberating thing that could have happened to me. And I got an award out of the deal, even if I did have to make it myself, making its value, umm, exactly the same as if they had given it to me.

I could start up my own wiki; in fact, a friend of mine just has and asked my opinion of the direction it should travel, but I doubt I'd recommend yet another parody of Stinkipedia. As far as those go, this is by far the lesser of the evils. I really do like this place - I honestly just like to play the role that I am cast in. I guess it's the thespian in me (didn't know you were talking to a full-blown thespian, did ya?), but I wanna give the crowd what they like/need. So the admins put in a request for a pseudovillian, you know, a scapegoat character (or maybe they said scarecrow, I can't remember the details)... how'd they put it? I think they said, "a little bit of Saddam mixed with a hint of an actual goat that we can place all of our sins onto and drive off into the wilderness". Something like that, anyway. My agent could tell you exactly. I think, overall, I am playing the role to a tee, although admittedly, I tend to let my true nice guy nature slip through when dealing with the more genuine and talented people on here. Even some of the admins. No, I think there are only a handful who have let their power go to their heads and, like I said in Asshole, they remind me of hemorroids - a little irritating but once they go away you can almost laugh at them.

I think I'll stick it out here. I may still make Pariahpedia, even if it is only my User page, because I find it funny, which is what a User page is for, I 'spose. Although as hurricane season approaches I would imagine that I'll be here less and less anyway; I'll have waves to catch (looks like a good amount of storms should be arriving my way). And I agree, Benson is better than us all. --Immy 21:46, 11 June 2006 (UTC)
For the record, if anyone has a problem with an admin's behavior, my talk page is always open. I try to be very approachable, and while most admins are quite friendly around here, most of us WILL mock you mercilessly, on occassion, if we think you really need it. It has happened to me, too, and, frankly, it WILL happen again. It is kinda the role admins play around here: don't put up with crap, and be funny if at all possible.--<<Bradmonogram.png>> 02:31, 12 June 2006 (UTC)
Well, well, well, look who shows up - Mr. Decent&Fair (not to mention the author of my favourite Muppet article on here) himself. You are correct, most admins are friendly around here and you rank as one of the most approachable and genuine. I've been using that word a great deal lately, genuine; must be important or something. I still kinda feel bad that you thought I had ignored you on IRC all those months ago when you tried to help me out. I haven't forgotten that (obviously, right?). Wanna hear something a little bit crazy?.. I have exactly Ø complaints about specific admins, at least as far as their treatment of me goes (it's their treatment of some other people, whom I greatly respect, that I can't stomach at times). I'm really just tossing Golden Apples into crowded rooms. I can take merciless mockery, as long as it's good-natured, or at least there's no malicious intent behind it.

I guess by now you've all run your User Checkout system on me (and scanned my files, made copies, distributed them amongst yourselves, then others, then otters, who must've sent them to Philadelphia because just yesterday my mother called me to tell me that she received a Spam email at work which contained the bawdy, lesbian romance novella I've been cranking out. Yes, I said I've been cranking it out. I know the cabal is responsible, but I'm not going to press any charges. So we're even, right?) and determined that I am who I said I was all along. You have, right? So hopefully any admins that may have a problem with my actions (I don't know, I'm just saying) can look back and see why they've cast me in this adversarial role (which is all in good fun, I think). Also I'm a bit of an anarchist, in theory anyway, and enjoy, ah, how should I say this without sounding boorish?... fucking with the system. Especially when there is a bit of corruption behind it. It's alright, I understand that everyone has a pretty unique personality here (tends to happen with creative people), so of course there will be many different ideas of how this place should be run and what's important. In all actuality, I probably enjoy tilting at you windmills. It just adds a layer of fun.

I would also like to go on the record and say that I have never voted against something for any ill-mannered reasons. I may have been a sarcastic bastard on some against votes, but as far as I can tell I've not said anything that most other users, admin or otherwise, haven't said themselves. And it doesn't necessarily mean I didn't find something funny, it may just mean I wasn't high enough when I read it. If this leads to retaliation against me, then so be it (not by you, I know... I'm just tossing words to the void, now). I would hope that if any admins had a problem with me they would feel free to contact me here... or is that what you just did? --Immy I will never wash my talk page again 04:11, 12 June 2006 (UTC)
I generally try not to have personal problems with people on uncyclopedia, whatever happens here, but I also don't believe in letting people think that they can, proverbially, "pee on my leg and tell me it's raining." It's a tightrope walk to a certain extent, not getting personally emotionally involved in a confrontational situation, but also communicating that you won't allow yourself to be used as a punching bag either. Hopefully, I'm pulling it off. It's really a minor part of what goes on here, but you need to have the strength of character to let people who do mess with you know you're not imitidated. Nobody ever thinks well of anyone whose personality is too weak to stand up for themself. --Hrodulf 04:13, 12 June 2006 (UTC)
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