This is Tony, the author of many NVDA add-ons and occasional contributor to NVDA core.
I would like to join Jaffar Sidek and express my discontent with Brian Vogel's moderation policy of this list. While I was not involved in said discussion, I've had arguments with Brian before, and I disagree with his moderation policy.
Brian, I know this message violates half of your rules, but you locked the previous thread, and you don't allow any other ways of expressing opinions, so you leave me no other choice to speak up.
Brian, your moderation style is hurting this community. Instead of letting people talk to each other to solve their accessibility issues you lock threads under excuses that they violate rules that you yourself imposed. You give warnings to people left and right for missing some other email on the list. In general your moderation policy creates an atmosphere of fear instead of collaboration. People are afraid to ask and answer questions.
My previous attempts of communicating this privately to you led nowhere, your typical response is "I am tired of people complaining about my moderation style."
Your list of rules is incomplete - I actually read it - and it is always hard to predict which grey area topics you would think are appropriate for the list and which ones are not. My request for clarification was unanswered. And this becomes a big deal since you enforce those not-so-clear and not-so-well-defined set of rules vigorously. To us this feels like toss of a coin: we never know whether you'll consider certain topic to be violating or not.
Regarding reading all the previous emails on the thread - I personally don't see a big problem when someone didn't read another email on the thread. Brian, you are sighted, so seeing the tree of emails is much easier for you. For blind people it is much more complicated to keep the structure of emails in the head, so try to forgive them once in a while. Moreover, some people on this list are old, and as people get older, it is harder and harder to keep tree-like structures of emails in the head. So giving out strict warnings to blind people for not being able to keep track of all the emails - seems to me ridiculously harsh policy.
The ultimate question we should ask is whether this list is better than it was before Brian started to moderate it or not. I still remember this list before Brian, and indeed there were a few off-topic threads, that were mildly annoying, but that wasn't a big deal. Now with Brian people are more scared to ask questions. People are scared to respond. All an all, if we view this mailing list as a tool for people to exchange thoughts on NVDA, solutions to problems, etc, I believe the effectiveness of this tool went down after Brian started to moderate it.
I myself don't show up here often anymore, partly because it is no longer enjoyable. I am the author of many NVDA add-ons (such as Bluetooth Audio, BrowserNav, SentenceNav, TextNav and others)and I have contributed a few PRs to NVDA core, most notably fast browse mode. If I spent a month working on an add-on, I wish to be able to tell people about it. While Brian has never locked my threads about my add-ons, he locked a closely related thread regarding SSH accessibility, with an excuse that "less than 10% people on this list know what is SSH." So I don't have much confidence that tomorrow Brian won't lock my thread about another add-on, with a similar excuse, give me a strict warning, and tell me "he's tired of people like me."
Since it is possible that after this message I will get banned for speaking up, you guys know whom to blame if I won't be able to answer questions regarding my add-ons on this mailing list.
To all the subscribers: this thread is likely to be locked by Brian (if it will ever go through), so feel free to reply to me privately if you feel unhappy with Brian as well.