We all know I'm a City of Heroes addict, and as you might imagine, there's more than a few of us on LJ. As such, there's both in-game and on-LJ communities for LJ users. However, even within this large group (huge, if you count all the lurkers and more casual players, but even just the active players make up a pretty big group), there is a smaller clique. Now, lemme just say that I don't have a problem with this, or even most of the members; some of them are friends, and most are a pleasure to play with.
Others? Not so much.
True, in any group, you'll find this kind of thing. But these few I'm referring to, not only are they quite at the dark end of the spectrum, they're some of the most vocal and most obnoxious. A few even seem to think that they are God's gift to the world, and that they have the right, nay, the mandate, to lord it over the rest. There's one in particular who I have a serious issue with. 99% of this person's contribution to the community is in the form of arrogant comments about how people are wrong. It's to the point where I twitch even seeing their name appear in community, and each thing I read with their name attached annoys me even more. In a community whose policy states, in no uncertain terms, that personal attacks are not tolerated, no one ever says a word to her abrasive tirades.
Now, in a well-moderated community, this kind of attitude would be quashed, or at least frowned upon. Unfortunately, we have at least one moderator that is a part of said clique, and as such, will judge in favor of their friend. Not only is this bad form for a moderator, but this person rarely even plays anymore, which to me would be a fairly good criterion against moderating a community based on the game.
We have 4 moderators, actually. Apart from the one just mentioned, we have one who I think does a good job, one who I don't personally like but who I think does a good job, and one who I've never seen nor heard of. I e-mailed them, not long ago, with concerns for the attitude in the community, and I feel I did a good job of expressing this concern in calm and logical manner, addressing the issue in terms of the community, not personal annoyance. I still have not received a reply, nor has any action or comment come to light. I do wonder if the aforementioned mod got the message and simply deleted it.
Recently, I commented to one of the former's posts, suggesting a better place for it (a post in regard to one small group of people, who have their own community just for this sort of thing). I did so in a calm and concise manner, making no comments as to any judgment or editorial remark. I got only snark and derision in reply and, yes, in anger I replied in a manner that was, well, less than complimentary, suggesting that she stop being a pain in the ass. That was wrong and stupid, I admit, but damn, I'm completely fucking tired of this shit...and the fact that our moderators put up with it. It wasn't until much later that the aforementioned mod finally came in, warning me about personal attacks, and then replying to me in an unprofessional manner, not befitting someone in charge. Yes, I replied to that effect, and openly accused them of favoritism...to which the original poster froze the thread. Note that this is a no-no, but as I'm sure you can guess, no sanction is being leveled against her. I've been accused of "self-righteously trying to do [the mod's] job", but when she actually takes steps in that direction, not a word is said against. That's bias, my friends, and marks the person as unfit to be a moderator, a position that needs must be one of impartiality.
My statements and refusal to bow down to the situation may very well get me banned from the community. Certainly, the poster and the mod are both making intimations that I could be "in trouble" for my words. The funny thing is that they seem to think this is a big deal. The truth of the matter is that I don't care. I play the game just fine with very little involvement in the community: over the past few months, I've pulled away from the community a lot, both online and in-game, mostly due to this kind of rampant self-entitled attitude. As such, being ostracized from it isn't a great loss; I am not the only one that is disgusted with this kind of thing. My friends are still my friends, and whether I'm connected to this group or not, I'll still have them. Frankly, anyone that wants to stop their association with me based on this is welcome to do so.
I will not stand idly by while some useless little princess continues to be annoying. A community is everyone, and that makes it everyone's duty to stand up to those that do wrong, and everyone's duty to try and get along. Moderators are there to ensure this sort of thing, not to simply defend their friends. At the same time, there's the whole "arguing on the internet" thing.
That's the problem, really. When the mods won't stop someone's ego-out-of-control, how do you deal with it? You're dealing with someone who doesn't have enough humanity to see that they are doing wrong or to listen to reason, they have made themselves a self-appointed authority. You can't argue with them, and you can't sanction them, but simply leaving doesn't help anything. No, I'll stay in there. Someone has to stand up and say "nay", and I'm not afraid of the consequences. In the immortal words of 2Pac, "Fuck 'em all."