There has been an unprecedented amount of turmoil in the Stack Exchange network recently, and we wanted to share some of the developments with you. We will keep this brief; you can follow the links or ask for details if you want to learn more.
Stack Exchange was concerned about users misgendering others and using wrong pronouns, but they made some serious mistakes in their approach to this key issue. A well-respected and experienced moderator, Monica Cellio, was demoted without notice or proper explanation. Public communication from SE made it look as if she supported misgendering or transphobia, but she only proposed that one should not be forced to use the singular 'they'. SE then ceased all communication and refused to discuss. Many users found this very disrespectful.
This was not the first action from SE which angered many, but it triggered a furious response from the community. All three moderators considered whether they could continue. Nathaniel decided to resign from his moderatorship.
The trust between the company employees and the moderators is the key to keeping the network functional. Both sides have started rebuilding this trust: the company wrote an apology to the community and the moderators wrote an open letter to the company. Anyone is free to sign it, and both of your remaining two moderators have.
The discussion of genders and pronouns had to do with controversial upcoming changes to the Code of Conduct. The new Code of Conduct is finally here. The rewording intends to deal more strictly with negative behavior towards other users and their identity.
From what we have seen, these matters have not been an issue on our Latin language site. Therefore the effect on us is minimal. We, your moderators, aim to maintain a framework where you can discuss and learn Latin in a civilized and respectful manner. This is nothing new, but we must stress: If anything at all makes you feel uncomfortable on this site, please make us aware of your concerns. Raise a custom flag, contact the company, bring it up on meta, or mention it in chat. We cannot solve problems we are unaware of. I hope we can continue to be an example to the whole network in being respectful and welcoming.
If you have any reactions you want to share or thoughts for future directions, please share them below as answers or comments.
Joonas & Cerberus