#winehq admin troubles

Chris Morgan chmorgan at gmail.com
Sun Nov 4 23:12:42 CST 2007

On 11/4/07, feba thatl <febaen at gmail.com> wrote:
> Sorry if this mailing list is less than appropriate, but from what
> I've seen this is where the conversation was last time, and there
> doesn't seem to be much better.
> A while ago (Probably one-three months), I went to #winehq to ask
> about something, and was treated rather rudely by vitamin. I got
> annoyed by him, and made a somewhat rude comment myself (not as rude
> as he was being, but still probably inappropriate), and he kicked me.
> I rejoined the channel, and I don't really remember what happened
> afterwards, but it can't have been too awful as I don't believe I was
> banned. I do remember being left with a very sour taste with Wine, as
> I googled vitamin, and found that this was nowhere near the first time
> he had been needlessly rude to a user and had even given completely
> unwarranted bans with seemingly no reprimand.
> I gradually started going back to winehq for help and questions, with
> no problems. Last night, I went in to ask if anyone wanted to help me
> get a program working, and vitamin replied. I groaned to myself, but
> we had a perfectly civil conversation. At one point he stopped
> replying, but it's not like I haven't had to walk off myself for
> various reasons, so I just left quietly.
> Today, I joined #ubuntu to try to get something working, and found
> someone else asking for help with Wine. I (amongst others) recommended
> they go to #winehq. They joined, but commented in #ubuntu that, quote:
> (09:27:58 PM) <Name removed>: man these #winehq people are not friendly at all
> I joined #winehq and confirmed my fears that vitamin was being rude to
> someone else. Vitamin asked what version they were running, they
> answered with 9.46 (the version in the Ubuntu repos, last I checked),
> and I recommended they go to winehq.org and follow the instructions on
> how to add the Wine repos. Vitamin said something along the lines of
> "that isn't the case here", I said that it's still helpful (to have an
> up to date version of wine). I then asked if Vitamin had got the
> program we talked about last night working, and seconds later was
> kicked. No explanation, the kick line just had "(Vitamin)". Utterly
> confused, I rejoined, for which I do have a chatlog:
> (09:32:56 PM) The topic for #winehq is:[long topic removed]
> (09:33:09 PM) ***vitamin fucking tired all knowning noobs!
> (09:33:15 PM) <Name removed, same person from #ubuntu>: wine: cannot
> find '/media/cdrom0/intro.exe'
> (09:33:15 PM) vitamin: usrl, you better leave
> (09:33:25 PM) usrl: Why?
> (09:33:32 PM) mode (+b *!*n=feba@*.hsd1.ks.comcast.net ) by vitamin
> (09:33:32 PM) You have been kicked by vitamin: (vitamin)
> That's the entire chatlog of my second time joining (I didn't think to
> save a copy of the first), with nothing removed but a bunch of topic
> stuff nobody wants to read and the fellow from #ubuntu's nick.
> Now, I not only have been banned for apparently being a noob (Again,
> it's a best guess, Vitamin did not give any clue at all in his kick
> messages, let alone a warning in the channel) in a channel that is
> supposed to support end users, but a few minutes later, I see this,
> again in #ubuntu:
> (09:37:15 PM) <Name removed>: well I got banned from winehq for asking
> a question
> This person didn't seem rude at all when I was talking to them.
> Thankfully, they were able to get their problems resolved in #ubuntu.
> Given that vitamin seems to have had user abuse problems in the past,
> what is going on here? I can understand not getting professional
> service in an IRC channel, but why is someone who is so needlessly
> abusive (again, kicking people for little more than asking a question;
> when the channel is for support.) entrusted with admin abilities? From
> what I read on another complaint, he seems to be in this position
> because he is a developer, not because he is truly a good fit for
> being a moderator or even a helper. While he might be great at coding,
> his people skills definitely suffer. I can understand getting angry
> over people asking their questions right, but when you're trying to
> support end users, you have to be able to deal with at least some
> stupidity-- and even disregarding that, if you're going to not only
> kick someone, but ban them, give them some idea of what they did
> wrong.
> It almost seems to me as if he is banning people not because they did
> something wrong, but because he had a bad day-- like I said, last
> night he was fairly civil, even though I'm sure I made my share of
> stupid questions and comments. I'm not sure if this is the only
> moderator with these sorts of problems, but something needs to be
> done. Wine is used by all sorts of people, heck, my mother uses it.
> When all sorts of people are using a program, all sorts of people are
> going to be having problems with it. I wouldn't expect my mother, or
> anyone else's, to be able to phrase their question well and make a
> support person happy, but I also wouldn't expect someone who is
> supposed to be supporting users insulting them and banning them (not
> only ignoring their need for help, but effectively making it
> impossible for many other people to help them as well).
> Something needs to change, Wine is something a lot of people switching
> to non-Windows OS are going to use, and many people could be easily
> turned off when they find the first place they turn to for help, the
> place that winehq.org leads them to, not only has very rude people in
> power, but has no checks or guards to keep said people from ruining a
> user's experience.

I agree that this isn't something that should continue. Kicking should
be reserved for people being disruptive. There is no reason to be
anything other than polite to users asking for help.

Allowing this kind of behavior to continue reflects poorly on us as a
community. I'd like to suggest that this be the last time we hear
about issues like this. If it happens again I'd like to propose a
graduated scale of irc channel bans, starting at one month, for


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