Skinner ADMIN (1000+ posts)
Fri May-20-05 10:42 AM
Response to Original message
42. Obviously, it is self-serving for me to comment here.
After all, I'm the person who gets the money when you donate, so you can take my opinion with a grain of salt. But I think this thread is unfortunate. It adds to the level of paranoia here on DU, and it creates even greater suspicion against new people.
I have always been impressed by how selfless and generous DU members are. If there is a member in need, I think it's great when others help out. There is no harm in giving someone a star. It's a good deed that can be done easily and inexpensively, from the comfort of your own home.
Do some trolls take advantage of the generosity of DU members? Of course they do. But there are many more DUers who are perfectly legitimate members who have fallen on hard times. They should not have a cloud of suspicion over their heads just because someone at Conservative Underground wants a star too. Those people at Conservative Underground will figure out a way to get a star even if you all stop handing them out. It's not like it's a particularly difficult thing to do. A one dollar bill in an anonymous white envelope will get you a star here.
The moderators never take people's donation status into account when they discuss whether someone might be a troll. Every day they ban people with gold stars. Administrators will occasionally consider a member's history of donation, because we actually know who has donated and who has not. But the moderators can't tell, and they don't even consider it.
Allow me to offer another possible interpretation of what you are reading at Conservative Underground: They know you are reading their crap, and they know that they can easily scare you all into doing what they want you to do. Sure, they want you to give them stars. But if you all get paranoid and decide to stop giving out stars, then what happens? Two things, both of which play right into their hands: 1. More paranoia about trolls and newbies, and 2. Less money for DU. It's a win-win for the disruptors at Conservative Underground.
If only you all would stop reading their lies, they wouldn't be able to disrupt this place. But apparently that website is like crack cocaine for DUers, and nobody has much interest in trying to kick the habit.
We know that you all care about DU and you are just trying to help -- and I appreciate that -- but you've got to understand that when you bring their lies back to DU, you are doing more harm to Democratic Underground than the people at CU could ever do on their own.
Let's not give the CUers what they want. I think we would all prefer to be part of a community that is kind and generous, rather than suspicious and paranoid.