I noticed that the original-now-replaced CoC FAQ was deleted.

When the new CoC FAQ came out, I tried to look for my old answer as well as others for comparison. Why not just mark the old one superseded by [insert link]?

Note: I don't care about lost rep. There were a lot of useful links in answers and comments there (and some less-than-useful ones too).

Old CoC FAQ may be available here and here. Source: (1, 2).

  • 144
    Because the sheer number of downvotes was embarrassing and would come up for years as "Hey, remember that one post that got the most downvotes ever?" It's the opposite of Mysticial's legendary post about branch prediction, sitting at over 30,000 upvotes. Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 5:23
  • 98
    @TheAnathema remember the day SE started self vandalism when it didn't like the responses? It was the day many users asked themselves whether to continue contributing.
    – JJJ
    Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 6:15
  • 67
    People are advised to write an answer instead of comments if they want to be heard. This no longer applies here. Show some respect for those users that have invested time and effort into writing constructive answers on that post and undelete the question.
    – dfhwze
    Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 6:24
  • 10
    Not knowing the lever SE Inc. has on archive sites and search engines, I'm considering saving a recent state myself - just in case. Tad more than 3 MBytes, not going to tell how many copies I've stashed where.
    – greybeard
    Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 6:35
  • 4
    @dfhwze speaking of answers, 100 or 200 of those who did it there can find the link to removed FAQ in their "recently deleted answers" and see it (until about Dec 10 when 60 days of posting expire)
    – gnat
    Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 7:28
  • 47
    I'm really surprised about actions like these. At some point I'd expect SE to ask themself "things are pretty heated, will the community really be ok with us simply deleting this?". The answer is so obvious and yet, here we are. And yes, there were some blatantly provocative answers in the thread, but most were legit and probably took a lot of work to write. feelsBadMan
    – Philipp
    Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 7:30
  • 11
    @TheAnathema It was never the most downvoted ever; it got a lot of downvotes but it never caught up with the notorious "Sorry-not-sorry we sacked Monica lol" Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 10:05
  • 5
    To give the messenger of the bad news back the lost reputation? Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 12:50
  • 3
    Because it became the most downvoted post on SE. As simple as that. Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 13:37
  • 14
    The Internet Archive should still have it in all its glory. Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 15:22
  • 6
    Downvotes just mean disagreement. If not even the company can live with it, who can? Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 15:29
  • 3
    @JJJ Remember back when SE started enforcing legally dubious and unethical arbitration for settling disputes? I wonder where that heavily downvoted post went...
    – GreySage
    Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 15:43
  • 11
    God, this is so depressing. It's like they want us to be mad! Or maybe they just don't care. Yeah, it's probably that one.
    – user473022
    Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 21:35
  • 4
    The new policy is the result of a sizable tech-oriented company trying to address social issues at a level rarely attempted. I think the minute-by-minute history of it's implementation, warts and all, is of interest to a larger community than SE, with possible academic implications, and I think it's regrettable that SE can't find a way to capture the history in a way that facilitates post-hoc examination. Commented Oct 25, 2019 at 13:30
  • 5
    @ScottSeidman if they had not demodded a respectable moderator for no reasons other than (apperently) silly reasons (or at least unknown to the public) then these CoC changes and the associated FAQ would have passed by much more easily, and certainly more quietly and much less messy. So it is difficult to say whether this case has much academic value in relation to the implementation of addressing social issues, because it is so much tainted. Commented Oct 25, 2019 at 19:39

14 Answers 14


The original FAQ was written as a supporting document for the blog post; as such, it omitted a great deal of material regarding goals and rationale. However, due to technical limitations, it became the de-facto landing spot for most readers, a role for which it was ill-suited. As a result, it was quickly swamped by unanticipated questions, unaddressed concerns, and many, many, many discussions.

Two days later, Gareth McCaughan, a long-time member of the community here and a respected moderator on our Puzzling site, wrote a much better FAQ that covered much of what had been left unaddressed in the "official" version.

The community manager team here at Stack Exchange - primarily Cesar M, Catija and JNat - took their lead from this initiative, and worked to adapt and expand on this community-driven FAQ. They've spent the past week compiling, revising and reviewing the new FAQ, collecting feedback from moderators and other concerned members of the community, and working to reconcile outstanding points of confusion or concern.

With the new FAQ released, the old one no longer serves any purpose. With just shy of 1,000 flags raised on the question, its answers, and associated comments... It had become a mess that would have been prohibitively expensive to clean up.

In such a situation, deletion is not only expedient, it is all but negligent to not delete.

To the folks suggesting a historical lock: such locks are meant for popular posts that are no longer appropriate, a way to keep culturally important things around. A FAQ that caused more harm than good does not qualify; it would continue to be a stumbling-block for readers if kept. The harm vastly outweighs the value of its short history at this point.

Also... All those flags I mentioned? We avoided handling quite a lot of them, but this would not fly if we kept the question and all answers visible - we'd be faced with the task of going through and trying to ascertain the validity of flags in a great many acrimonious conversations. I guarantee that no one involved in the many threads there would be happy with the results.

  • 34
    A historic lock seems appropriate, since it was clearly one of the most historic posts of SE's history. Commented Oct 27, 2019 at 19:04
  • 7
    @AskAboutMonica "one of the most historic posts of SE's history". And that's why it was deleted (¬‿¬ ) Commented Oct 28, 2019 at 17:04
  • 4
    Culturally important things are not only the good things. The bad things may be important too. Add 2 000 votes and a lot of answers are about that. Historical lock and reseting all hanging flags seems the best way.
    – Qwertiy
    Commented Oct 28, 2019 at 17:07
  • 2
    "resetting" - so, just ignoring everyone who flagged to preserve the answers @qwertiy? That's... Negligence.
    – Shog9
    Commented Oct 29, 2019 at 4:11
  • Most kind of flags are not suitable for locked posts. I don't propose to decline them as they could be correct for a live post, so that's ok to approve them but don't do any action. So I've said resetting. Ignoring who flagged is smaller problem then ignoring who answered.
    – Qwertiy
    Commented Oct 29, 2019 at 7:39
  • 4
    It is better to ignore flags than to ignore unaddressed concerns and community backlash. Deleting that question felt bad for everyone involved, because it feels like you're trying to sweep backlash under the rug instead of solving the problems. As of now, SE doesn't have much trust, and doing something like that only hurt it more.
    – T. Sar
    Commented Oct 31, 2019 at 11:01
  • 1
    ...more so it is a bit... strange that a regular moderator was able to put together better content than the staff that is paid to do so. You may want to take a look on that.
    – T. Sar
    Commented Oct 31, 2019 at 11:02
  • "1,000 flags [...] prohibitively expensive to clean up"- . They aren't on a unique issue each, so in reality they are much fewer. Assuming 10 mods working on it, would it take more than half a day to clean up? Why not clean it up and lock it.
    – user
    Commented Nov 19, 2019 at 7:44

(Disclaimer: I do have an answer on that question, too ... and I am sad to see the 500 upvotes gone. But my issue is a different one.)

That is exactly the opposite of what Stack Exchange Inc. should be doing right now.

Just the other day, the company said: "yes, we understand we should listen". Now you come in, and delete all that user input on that question. But there were some really great answers. Which now only 10K rep users can ever get to, from here on.

This is the exact opposite of listening. It feels like you just took all that user input, to flush it down the toilet. ( Supposedly, a lot of the user input given for FAQ1 made it into version 2. But alas, who could say, now that the original FAQ1 is gone ... )

Yes, that question was a mess, but there would have been better ways to deal with that. Like: editing title/question content, clearly expressing: "new better content is around now, so we lock the things here, have a look there".

These are exceptional times, so maybe come up with something exceptionally better than "let's throw all that user input away".

And note how much churn that this decision is causing already. If the old FAQ had just been locked, nobody would have complained.

But yet, here we are...

  • 14
    Most of us don’t enjoy making mistakes. They can leave us feeling embarrassed, sloppy, incompetent, or just plain stupid. We avoid mistakes like the plague but in fact, mistakes are our best teachers and motivators for growth and success.
    – aloisdg
    Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 8:26
  • 1
    @aloisdg I concur. Stack exchange Inc. is creating many great examples to learn from these days.
    – GhostCat
    Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 8:31
  • 26
    @GhostCat One day Community Management schools will take this whole show as an example of poor management. Maybe we should write this lesson. A chronological list of events with each key mistake milestone and, for each, an apporiate way to handle it at that point.
    – aloisdg
    Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 8:40
  • 3
    @aloisdg Yeah, I had similar thoughts when I saw the various statements from that specific director of communications. It read like an excerpt from a "101 on really bad communication styles" lecture.
    – GhostCat
    Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 12:49
  • 10
    It's really sad to see, the now long history, of inept decisions made by SE. I used to have so much love for this platform, but now I'm terribly worried that it's no longer in safe hands. They've had many, many chances to nip this problem in the bud, by admitting mistakes and eating some humble pie, but the longer it goes on, the harder it's going to be to fix. It's so, very, sad. Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 13:42
  • 1
    @aloisdg Earlier, community managers and directors used to be selected from within the community itself. Naturally, they had ground-level experience with what works best for the community. Now it seems they're placing inexperienced people from outside into high positions of responsibility without training them sufficiently Talent really doesn't scale well and their hiring strategy seems to be all messed up.
    – user437611
    Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 14:51
  • @user437611 I think the problem is a dogfooding problem. It seems that a lot of new hire (including the CEO) arent "heavy" SE user (like at least 10k+ user). Sometimes they use the platform like new SE users would. Making mistakes that a lurk moar could avoid. This is more a personal feeling that science though.
    – aloisdg
    Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 15:00
  • @aloisdg Yep, that's exactly my feeling too.
    – user437611
    Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 15:21
  • 5
    Absolutely nothing about this indicates that anyone has listened or cares. It's the same thing. Apparently SE loves this and doesn't want it to stop. Rinse and repeat. It feels like talking to some who just nods their head and then ignores you. Trust was strained. 'Sorry, we didn't get this right but we're listening this time and it will be different.' Trust is nuked from orbit. Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 15:31
  • @aloisdg "mistakes are our best teachers and motivators for growth and success". Firstly SE need to acknowledge that they've made mistakes. Unfortunately we're in the stubborn "everyone else is wrong and we're right" phase. It's difficult to get past that with zealots. Commented Oct 24, 2019 at 7:49
  • @ReinstateMonica They are a business, an american one. Yes they are loosing their face but they are also trying to not loose their jobs. We, as a community, are mostly thinking about the community interest. They have to think about themselves, their company, then the community. In an ideal world, this will be one single goal. In our case, not so much.
    – aloisdg
    Commented Oct 24, 2019 at 7:59
  • 1
    Clearly your answer resonates with many in the community (+1). Commented Oct 27, 2019 at 14:25
  • The question wasn't just deleted, links to public archives of it late in its life were also removed (and not in a wipe-all-the-comments purge, they were targeted), while one from near the beginning - before the massively negative score - was kept. It is absolutely an attempt to hide how disliked it was.
    – Izkata
    Commented Oct 27, 2019 at 19:25
  • @Izkata I haven't heard about that. Can you link to more information about these selective deletions?
    – GhostCat
    Commented Oct 29, 2019 at 7:54
  • @GhostCatsaysReinstateMonica This is the comment that was kept, where you can see the direct link has the question at -60; immediately before that was the question they're responding to, my posting of an archive with the question at -1925, and someone else posting a Wayback Machine link directly to it at -1930. All 3 responses were posted at the same time, only the heavily-downvoted ones deleted. The comment asking for it was also only later removed.
    – Izkata
    Commented Oct 29, 2019 at 14:42

In my not so humble opinion, SE is making a massive mistake deleting the thread.

I agree that semantically, historical locking might not be appropriate. However, effectively it's exactly what we need.

As the community, reason #1 for spending even a minute of our time on meta is because we want SE to listen to us, so we can work together and make all the sites the best we can, and the most useful for all visitors, logged in or not. The community needs SE's help and cooperation for that.

Removing triple digits of answers and tens of thousands of votes has nothing to do with working together.

What SE should do here is undelete it, then lock it for all interactions except perhaps those of moderators. Hang a big, fat, unmissable banner at the top among the lines of:

This post is only here to record the community response to our CoC update of [exact date]. However, it is now oudated by CoC[link], which is discussed here[another link].

Please show us you care about our thoughts. This can only work if we all work together, even if you guys have the capability to delete posts we don't.

  • +1 because I agee with your point. But about the semantics: the post is 'estoire' now, or will be history of the future, so semantically there is nothing wrong. Commented Oct 25, 2019 at 19:49
  • @SextusEmpiricus Semantically according to the definition of use cases for historical locking - as argued in and under Shog9's answer.
    – Gloweye
    Commented Oct 25, 2019 at 19:52
  • 1
    That is a very narrow definition of the meaning of 'history'. But anyway, I looked up the use-cases now and I see not why "a way to keep culturally important things around" does not qualify. Unless somebody, some power, is trying to rewrite history and dominate what is considered culturally important. Commented Oct 25, 2019 at 19:56

As the top voted answer owner on the question, it makes me incredibly concerned that the question was deleted without obvious warning. Combined with the fact that my (semi controversial) answer had its comments wiped out 3 times without explanation while other highly voted answer comments remained intact is concerning to me. I’m not saying we’re being censored, but it’s starting to feel like it.

  • 3
    It's not censorship in the broad sense, but maybe something like that decided criticism is undesired. It's a message to you. Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 15:32
  • 3
    It a "broad" sense, even removing obviously hateful content could be called censorship. The comments on his answer were quite a bit further down on the slippery slope between that and "everything", though.
    – Gloweye
    Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 15:59

For those that lack 10K reputation, and thus are unable to see deleted questions, the Wayback Machine is a great tool.

(M)SE, and more specifically the post mentioned was frequently captured. The last capture before deletion can be found here. The next capture, ~15 mins later, shows the 404 page to indicate the question was deleted.

  • 28
    I suspect that page is going to vanish eventually, it has happened in the past with SE posts on the archive.
    – Mast
    Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 10:05
  • @Mast time to do our own backup. I wonder if there is an IPFS-based wayback machine.
    – aloisdg
    Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 13:04
  • 5
    It's worth mentioning the Wayback Machine also archived the original FAQ before revisions were made.
    – Stevoisiak
    Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 17:50
  • 2
    too bad it doesn't show all comments Commented Oct 25, 2019 at 0:26
  • 3
    @Mast It's not as good quality, but this one won't be going away
    – Izkata
    Commented Oct 27, 2019 at 19:28

It doesn't make any difference if the deletion is what would normally be done (and I might even dispute that); that it was done now, in the current climate, is unconsidered and only bound to feed into ideas of skepticism, doubt, and mistrust.

If nothing more, the appearance of its deletion is that (1) SE doesn't like the bad image it's getting, (2) isn't listening to what anybody else is telling it, and (3) doesn't care about what anybody else is telling it.

Unfortunately, the deletion of that thread—which was one of the most community-driven and vocal of any thread in recent history—looks bad and simply increases that perception.

  • 8
    In short, they checked out with many from the meta crowd. They don't have much to say and they don't want to hear much either. Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 15:34

This was an error of judgment by SE. It sends entirely the wrong message, as noted in other answers.

I would have preferred closing as a duplicate of the newer Code of Conduct, as has been the practice.

The Q & A could also have been locked, if ongoing activity was deemed counter-productive.

Some content probably had little lasting value, but that could have been cleaned up gradually over time.

There was no particular rush, since most of the content had been seen to death already.

Deleting the Q & A at some point in the future could have been an option.

If left for the right length of time (60 days?), rep earned from +3 posts or higher(?) would have been preserved as normal.

There were better options here.


I don't know why I but I can tell you my reaction. Next time I will think twice before devoting as much time to write an answer.

Writing and rewriting to cut the cruft and leave the essential message. Formatting. Orthography. Checking comments and incorporating suggestions for improvement. All down the drain.

Why do I devote effort here if this is the outcome?

  • 3
    Maybe I'm missing something, but isn't meta supposed to be different? These answers were commentary on a policy that no longer exists. Is it really the same thing as writing a high-quality answer to a real question on a main site?
    – divibisan
    Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 17:28
  • 2
    Hopefully your hard work will have been included in the new policy etc. Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 18:01
  • 6
    These answers showed community input that as ultimately led to the update of policy. It's a shame these posts are no longer consultable.
    – dfhwze
    Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 18:03
  • 8
    @dfhwze Unless I'm mistaken, the CoC remains unchanged - they just created a new, more "idiot friendly" Q&A, none of which is binding. The CoC remains the same broken CoC that earned so much dissent. Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 21:43
  • 1
    This is a great answer. (+1) Commented Oct 25, 2019 at 12:06

This is a gesture of disrespectfulness towards community. A lot of people put some effort and spend some time of their life contributing to the feedback the management actually requested.

To add to that, question with a magnitude of negative feedback is still valuable asset that does have historical significance. We learn on our errors, we document our failures so that we can refer them later if needed.

Negative feedback is not necessarily a hostile or non-constructive feedback. Deleting posts like this is a sign of very weak PR policies.

Denying that reason was exactly what it actually was is a sign of even bigger problems.

I’m very disappointed because of all these recent developments.


This might be an unpopular opinion, but here goes:

While it might have made sense for SE to keep the question up to prevent angering certain parts of the community, the obsolete FAQ and the answers commenting on it are no longer relevant and no longer have value to the discussion.

The original version of the FAQ had serious problems. The community overwhelmingly rejected it and pointed those flaws out. StackExchange listened to that feedback and removed that policy, replacing it with a new and improved version. This sounds like exactly what we want from them!

As for the answers: when the policy they were commenting on was removed, they also lost their relevance. There are really only 2 options, either:

  1. the new version fully addressed the concerns, in which case there’s no value to keeping the original criticism, or
  2. the new version does not address (fully) the concerns, in which case there is still no value in keeping the original criticism, since the post needs to be rewritten to highlight how the new FAQ still fails to address it.

Keeping this thread around is just noise and would serve to keep people focused on old fights, instead of focusing on current issues (Monica, general communication with SE, perfecting the new FAQ).

I know lots of people are angry at SE, and don’t trust SE, and think their voices aren’t being listened to: but we should try to keep things in perspective. Improvements happen when we make positive suggestions for how things can be improved (see what Gareth accomplished with their Pronominal Proposal), not when we focus on re-fighting old fights.

  • 8
    Then why still keep older CoC updates, if the new one renders those obsolete? meta.stackexchange.com/questions/240594/….
    – dfhwze
    Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 18:54
  • 2
    The way I read it, a lot of the questions and concerns raised in the old FAQ still applies given the new FAQ, even if the new FAQ might've been phrased and structured better. And deleting it removes all the votes, which are fairly effective at expressing agreement or disagreement. Knowing that someone raised some question and it got hundreds of votes is useful and relevant information. "would serve to keep people focused on old fights" - people are not sheep; if they want to stay focused on something that's their prerogative (but if the post is "out of control", it's different).
    – NotThatGuy
    Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 19:02
  • @NotThatGuy If the concern still applies to the new FAQ, then it should be addressed specifically with respect to the new FAQ. From a purely practical perspective, if we want SE to listen to our criticism, we need to make it specific and actionable. We can’t expect someone to read the old thread, think about how to adapt an old answer to the new FAQ, and then make changes based on that. If they’re still relevant when expressed towards the new FAQ, they’ll get upvoted again and SE will see that it is still a problem.
    – divibisan
    Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 19:06
  • @NotThatGuy As for the “old fights” issue, people have the right to focus on whatever they want. But as people who are trying to improve SE, we should be focused on the new fights, not looking back at old ones
    – divibisan
    Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 19:08
  • 3
    @divibisan Plenty of people asked questions that received hundreds of upvotes to which SE responded with the equivalent of "yeah, no". Just reading the new FAQ would leave you with no idea why that question was included or what the community thought of it. And, while I don't think mistakes should haunt people forever, I think there's a lot of value in retaining history and expecting people to start forgetting something after less than 2 weeks is taking it way too far in the other direction.
    – NotThatGuy
    Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 19:14
  • Not to mention all the points made about why certain things should or should not be certain ways. Everything was just stripped down to a cookie-cutter response with all detailed discussion of pros and cons removed.
    – NotThatGuy
    Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 20:52
  • 7
    the obsolete FAQ and the answers commenting on it are no longer relevant and no longer have value to the discussion. We have had a very specific, well-defined process for such questions for almost a decade now; never has it been deleting the question entirely. Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 21:10

The short answer is: Because SE is showing their true color in its full glory. OR for a shorter version: Complete lack of integrity.


We can't have multiple posts with different, contradicting policies. I think it was the right call to delete it, because there is no other sensible way to withdraw the old policy.

  • Locked means "can't be changed", which is usually reserved for important posts, not for archiving old junk. This is appropriate for a current policy in effect. It can also be used as a temporary means to resolve edit wars etc.

  • Historical lock means old stuff that is actually off-topic or otherwise unsuitable for the site, but should be preserved anyway, because lots of people find it useful. I really don't see how this applies to a massively unpopular and now withdrawn policy.

Besides, these two terms above are probably too subtle for anyone but meta veterans to grasp. Policies should be easily accessible by anyone, including people who have never visited meta before. They shouldn't risk stumbling upon old policies by mistake.

The lesson learnt for the future is to separate the policy post itself from discussion around the policy. As was done when the new policy was posted. Then we can easily archive the discussion with historical lock.

  • 4
    “We can't have multiple posts with different, contradicting policies.” - This is a solved problem. When you look at RFCs, they don’t “delete” old ones that are no longer valid. They edit it to explicitly say it’s now obsolete and provide a reference to the replacement. Commented Oct 29, 2019 at 16:02

I would contend that retaining a massively downvoted post related to pronouns is harmful.

Future readers won't necessarily understand the context in which it was written. Future readers might simply think there is widespread disagreement with pronoun usage consistent with a user's request.

That particular post has certainly left me with some doubts, making me reflect on why so many people are downvoting it.

  • Do that many users consider disrespecting transgender users acceptable?

  • Does Stack Exchange have a community where, below the surface, it's hostile to transgender people?

  • Are the other ongoings being used as a cover story to voice "we don't like transgender people" without being labelled as transphobic?

Besides, surely the updated version is vastly better.

  • 29
    "Future readers might simply think there is widespread disagreement with pronoun usage consistent with a user's request." ... The reasons why people disagreed with that question can be seen in the comments and answers.
    – Tom
    Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 12:00
  • 5
    Exactly this. I understand that it unconvenient that you can no longer see what you wrote as feedback on the previous FAQ, to check if it was implemented or not. But there was too many dumpsterfires over there. Also people downvoted because they are upset with how SE handled some situations. I think it is more showing discontent to that regard then actual disagreeing with rights for trans people etc.
    – Luuklag
    Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 12:02
  • 5
    You could put up a really huge "banner" into the question, you could lock it for now, and delete it in 3 or 6 months, after everything really slowed down. Plenty of options that would have achieved the same, just without the churn that this overnight deletion triggered.
    – GhostCat
    Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 15:03
  • 2
    Yes, the updated version is much better, and therfore it doesn't have 2k downvotes, but a positive score instead. Also, disagreeing with a policy change which is much bigger than just pronouns doesn't imply anything about those pronouns, least of all disrespect. And as a vulnerable group, transgenders should be even more terrified of compelled speech as other groups, since every sizeable group ever that put compelled speech into law was homophobic and got worse from there.
    – Gloweye
    Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 15:08
  • 4
    @Tom "The reasons why people disagreed with that question can be seen in the comments and answers" Not anymore, since they were all deleted without being addressed.
    – GreySage
    Commented Oct 23, 2019 at 15:54
  • 3
    "Future readers won't necessarily understand the context in which it was written", the context was deleted in the questions and answers. There are plenty of questions left, and a big gaping hole has now been left in that context. Deleting the question was harmful to future readers. I suppose it depends on whether you like rewriting history and suppressing discussion. Commented Oct 24, 2019 at 7:58
  • 1
    "Future readers might simply think there is widespread disagreement with pronoun usage consistent with a user's request." Aaaaaaaand in many cases those future readers would be entirely correct. And that disagreement, which was for a variety of reasons, was explained by the dissenters very clearly. Too bad it's been deleted now. But these days, dismissing all dissent as bigotry seems to be the most effective form of control.
    – user142148
    Commented Oct 25, 2019 at 12:36
  • @Kyralessa There was a wide range of reasons that people disagreed, but an overwhelming majority of the anger (even among those who also disagreed with pronoun use rules) was about the FAQ specifically. There's nothing stopping you from making a new question to discuss remaining concerns with the policy – in fact, that would be better, as your concerns about the overall policy wouldn't be mixed up with and confused by the specific concerns with the wording of the old FAQ
    – divibisan
    Commented Oct 25, 2019 at 15:48

I never thought I would actually find anything to compare to Holocaust denialism, the systematic hiding and ignoring of painful history.

With this deletion SE is perpetrating user dissatisfaction denialism.

I read the new FAQ and when compared to the old FAQ there is not much substantive change, however I keep thinking the advice looks much more like what Monica Cellio got fired for.

Has she received her apology yet or is she going to be remain painted with the interim FAQ of the at that point unpublished CoC that she is said to have run afoul of?

  • 23
    No... just no... Don't use Holocaust in this context.
    – franiis
    Commented Oct 25, 2019 at 8:55
  • @franiis Explain why or tell me why hundreds of people no longer have a right to be triggered by the action that SE has taken. I am not Jewish but I am a pragmatist and I know that denying the Holocaust is worse than a neutral stance and not engaging in the debate. What we have here is active denialism and it affects everyone on the board.
    – KalleMP
    Commented Oct 25, 2019 at 9:04
  • I suggest that the deletion of a post is similar to the deletion, which is also a denial, of historical figures in photos, see: archive.nytimes.com/www.nytimes.com/slideshow/2009/08/23/… If you cannot see the article, then here's a link to the infamous image Commented Oct 25, 2019 at 9:20
  • 3
    Why not dial it back to damnatio memoriae? Still fits, still calls out the inappropriateness of cowardly censoring stuff one doesn't like and historical examples of that aren't nice either. And people upset about Godwin can rest then. Commented Oct 25, 2019 at 9:35
  • @KalleMP Rebecca only posted a link... anyhoo, Cellio should be capitalised. The last sentence is a bit confusing too, it needs to be slightly fixed. Commented Oct 25, 2019 at 9:35
  • 3
    Well, for one, I'm fairly sure nobody has actually been killed as a result of this CoC debacle. Unless we count Cesar M's Meta.SE rep as a person.
    – user142148
    Commented Oct 25, 2019 at 12:39
  • @Mari-LouA Yup, I went and did a bit of research and checked the user name of Monica on another site where she is active and I could quickly check it. Her user name there is just her surname and it is all lower case so I deferred to that. Check with her if it bothers her a lot that I used it.
    – KalleMP
    Commented Oct 25, 2019 at 17:04
  • 6
    Take out the Holocaust comparison. Now. Commented Oct 27, 2019 at 17:40

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