[Noisebridge-discuss] door "security": culture, not policy.

Snail snailtsunami at gmail.com
Thu Mar 21 20:07:42 UTC 2013

Mik, I honestly don't know why you are being angry with me and making
sarcastic remarks to everything I've said, item by item.

Maybe it's not me personally and you are just angry at the world and
using me as a passive-aggressive target because I'm conveniently here.

In any event :( I'd appreciate it if you didn't use my e-mails as a
way to push your overall anger onto a specific target [me] because of
other things that other people have done to you in the space because,
while maybe we aren't the best of friends or chat it up when we're
both in the space, I don't think I've done anything specifically bad
to you to warrant it.

On Thu, Mar 21, 2013 at 12:59 PM, Mitchel McAllister
<xonimmortal at yahoo.com> wrote:
> --- On Thu, 3/21/13, Snail <snailtsunami at gmail.com> wrote:
>> I will give you a virtual {{hugcoin}} because this is exactly what we
>> should do.
>> And yet, so many people have tried to get others to do these exact
>> same simple steps in the space to no avail. Maybe we can figure out
>> why.
> Mostly because it is inconveenyent and interrupts the flow of the conversation about how awesome and l33t the speaker is.
>> Challenge: Part I
>> Lessons in social interactions for people who don't know how to do the
>> social stuff.
>> A few times, I tried to greet people I didn't recognize and introduce
>> myself and ask for their names. People would act really weird and
>> sometimes annoyed because they were regular visitors, not strangers,
>> and I just had no idea who they were. They were not bad people, and
>> honestly I would be annoyed if someone tried to introduce me to the
>> space every time I walked upstairs or asked me why I was there.
>> The WORST thing you can say is stuff like, "Who are you? Why are you
>> here?"
> In January, I witnessed a member doing exactly that to a regular who has been coming here for four months. Now, admittedly the regular was coming here to work on stuff, so perhaps the 3rd degree was warranted. After all, we don't want things like *that* to become de rigeur, do we?
> I also watched a member, coming in the gate, deliberately slam the gate in a guy's face with the words "I don't know you." Of course, it was the guy's fault, since he was only coming in three times a week for some of the classes. Lucky for all of us, that guy stopped doing that immediately afterward.
>> The best way to phrase this is not an inquisition, but to just say,
>> "Hi, I'm _____, are you new?", and then it's easy for people to say
>> "No" or "yes, but I'm meeting someone here" and the ACTUALLY new
>> people are really happy to be greeted and will usually ask you
>> questions, instead of the other way around, which is how it should be.
> I've seen the opposite. Newcomers trying to talk to people in the space, to figure out what is going on and maybe get a tour (naah), getting snubbed or bitched out.
>> Just practice that sentence and everything will be O.K.
>> Challenge: Part II
>> How do you re-train an existing culture that was introduced to the
>> space just by being buzzed in with no greeting.
>> One case: the other night, one guy [who I don't know his name or
>> really recognize him] growled at a bunch of us angrily because we were
>> standing in sight of the door buzzer and weren't walking over to let
>> in immediately whoever was downstairs. He hit the button and walked
>> away, shouting at us, "You heard the buzzer!!", or somesuch statement.
>> Maybe I should have talked him and explained that not everyone lets
>> people in without greeting them, and that we're not obligated to do
>> this every 5 minutes for every person, that maybe he should do this,
>> too, instead of just yelling and hitting the button and stomping
>> around.
> Now that's just crazy talk. Next you will expect people to clean up after themselves, refrain from binging on Krobel and whippets all night in the Turing room, and consider other people before blasting didgeridoo and zither music on the PA/sound-system.
>> Maybe if I did these things I would know people's actual names instead
>> of having to refer to them as "grumpy yelling dude #1", "grumpy
>> yelling dude #2", etc. etc.
> Yes, but that would be naming names, which could necessitate "counseling" grumpy yelling dude #X about shoving his attitude on other people, which is a right enshrined in the Constitution (really - I saw it on the Internet - you should go look).
> On Wed, Mar 20, 2013 at 9:51 PM, Naomi Most <pnaomi at gmail.com> wrote:
>> Due to recent thefts and other unexcellent (and frankly disturbing)
>> issues, apparently the idea is circulating that "we" "shouldn't"
>> "just" "open the door".
>> I just had a sort of aggro conversation with some people sitting
>> around talking about this here at NB.  There seems to be a disconnect
>> for some people who are not used to acting perceptively versus
>> judgementally (I'm using the Myers-Briggs qualifications here).
>> If NB starts consensing on things that have to do with setting
>> Policies of any kind, heuristics that tell us how to surveil and
>> police ourselves, then NB is becoming a very different place, and I'm
>> not really interested in that.
>> If on the other hand we will keep on with not setting explicit
>> Policies (as I would expect and hope), but we still do want to start
>> initiating some measures of change that will create a more secure
>> environment, then I would suggest that Culture evolve towards the
>> following General Template of Door-Answering:
>> 0. Doorbell rings.  Like a well-trained dog, you think about opening the door.
>> 1. Ask yourself:  Do I know this person?  If not, do I feel like
>> *greeting* the person in some way?  If you don't feel you have the
>> social or emotional health at the moment to greet a person (and that's
>> totally okay), then maybe you shouldn't answer the doorbell.  You
>> could suggest that someone else open the door instead.
>> 2. If you do want to answer the doorbell, you are now "on the hook"
>> for greeting that person.  You are agreeing, in a way, to be that
>> person's Sponsor.
>> 3. The person comes up.  You greet them.  Ask their name, whether
>> they've been to NB before, if they're looking for a class, etc.
>> Hacker small talk.  No required information -- you are simply
>> humanizing Noisebridge and initiating empathy in the new person.
>> 4. ...Profit.  By which I mean experience a lot less crappy shit happening.
>> Notice that at no point do I talk about checking the person out to see
>> if you "like" them, or if they look shady or whatever.  That doesn't
>> matter.  Perfectly decent-looking human beings have been known to do
>> really shitty things.  And come on, how many of us *don't* look shady
>> at least 50% of the time.
>> What matters is that you make the effort to build a bridge of empathy
>> (however small and superficial), because studies show time and again
>> that this simple act of humanization reduces crimes of opportunity
>> (e.g. petty theft) by huge margins.
>> I hope it makes sense why I talk about this being Culture Not Policy.
>> And fortunately, the above heuristics completely obviate the need to
>> make snap judgement calls about anybody.
>> I'm not talking about laying down any laws, or designating anybody
>> with special privileges, or setting Policies that every individual
>> must follow.  Rather we are talking about the Noisebridge organization
>> agreeing to form new cultural Habits.
>> I can talk more about the behavioral psychology behind the above, but
>> at the moment I have a lot of ice cream to eat, so I'mma go do that.
> - Reverend Mik McAllister
> Purveyor of Subversive Fiction
> http://www.prismandink.com
> http://www.dabblerx.com
> http://www.lunatextpublications.com

............. _ at y

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