LizardIRC/COVID-19

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Due to the circumstances surrounding the global COVID-19 pandemic, we would like to remind our users that, per the network rules, we believe that free speech does not shield you from criticism or consequences that come to you as a result of your speech. LizardIRC staff at all times—before, during, and after this pandemic—reserve the right to sanction and/or remove users from the network who use the network to spread harmful speech, including the deliberate spreading of harmful disinformation. Thoughtful, civil, responsible discussion of disinformation as such is explicitly allowed, though at this time we require users wishing to discuss COVID-19 disinformation, conspiracy theories, etc. use #the-quorum instead of #lizardirc.

If you're seeking more information about COVID-19, please use reputable, trusted sources such as the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Health Canada, the World Health Organization, and your own local and national government resources. Wikipedia also contains useful information and may be a starting point for your own independent research.

We believe that LizardIRC's response to COVID-19 disinformation is in-line with existing network policy and practices, but we would like everyone to keep the following in mind:

  • As of 20 May 2020, discussion of any sort about COVID-19 disinformation, conspiracy theories, etc. in #lizardirc is strictly prohibited and required to be held in #the-quorum.
    • Rules about moving conversations to #the-quorum (both for COVID-19 and non-COVID-19 subjects) will be more strictly enforced during this time, and repeat violators will be subject to sanctions.
    • We expect this more stringent enforcement to be temporary, though users are reminded that COVID-19 disinformation discussion may fall under the general "politics, religion, social issues, etc." guideline for discussions that must be held in #the-quorum instead of LizardIRC.
  • Users who believe that someone is spreading harmful disinformation deliberately, related to COVID-19 or otherwise, are encouraged to speak to network staff in #help.
  • Channels that are created for the purpose of deliberately spreading harmful disinformation, COVID-19-related or otherwise, may be closed at staff discretion.
    • Otherwise, channels and their operators are free to set and enforce their own rules, as long as it is understood that those rules apply only to that channel and the channel is not spreading disinformation deliberately.
  • Thoughtful, civil discussion of disinformation and conspiracies, COVID-19-related or otherwise, as such remains allowed.
    • Such discussion still must not take place in #lizardirc; take it to #the-quorum or another channel.
  • Staff are given discretion on what qualifies as actionable violations under the above rules and guidelines, but we will apply common sense—and, as always, we expect our users to do so as well.
    • Broadly, these rules and guidelines exist to limit the spread of disinformation that causes irresponsible harms to any person or society, and they should be viewed and will be enforced in that light.