ObiesTalk Back


what are you going to do with this site now?

I’m not sure yet. With the end of ObieTalk, the end of the talks about ObieTalk, and a new, moderated ObieTalk-esqu site that I’m sure anyone is even using, the initial purpose of this blog is gone. However, I think there’s still tons of things Obies & Obie Alumni want to talk about, so maybe this could shift more towards a general opinions/concerns forum.

Rumor has it, the site is down until graduation.

Rumor has it, the site is down until graduation.

May 7

Student Senate & the Administration Talk To Students About Moderation

Missed yesterday’s Student Senate meeting on moderating ObieTalk. If you went and have thoughts about it you should send your comments in.

May 4

CornellHub (not Cornell), an independent student site like Obie Talk, has reasonable rules for moderation , scroll down to “A few simple, common-sense rules you must abide by”
May 4

My OCDC Moderated Discussion Notes

I apologize if these notes aren’t complete or ordered well. I decided a ways into the conversation that I should post information on how the discussion went on here. OCDC is willing to send you their minutes as well if you just ask. Also, if I’ve posted anything that you or someone you know has said that you feel was misrepresented or don’t feel okay with having online, let me know, and I will edit it or take it down ASAP.

Note: Administrators were intentionally asked not to be present. This is all from students.

Some key ideas/debates that popped up:

1. Comment flagging: will it work? Some say yes. Some say no. Reddit, 4Chan, and YouTube used as examples for and against. People who see something before it’s been taken down can be hurt. But, seeing something hurtful being flagged could make them feel better. How would it work? How many flags would be needed before something was taken down.

2. We need another (non-anonymous? usernames?) forum to productively talk about campus issues.

3. The mean/hateful speech seen on ObieTalk isn’t limited to online/is reflective of a lack of education on campus.

4. ObieTalk has been/can be used productively (e.g. the Active Minds/mental health thread.)/good things can come of it (e.g. links to funny things)

5. If we shut it down another will pop up. (In fact one just popped up recently that does have a flagging system).

6. We need to hold people accountable, and not let them leave Oberlin thinking they can say these kinds of things on the internet after they leave.

7. Anonymity is not necessarily bad (e.g. Anonymous responses to Ruby’s Oberlin Blog post) and not everyone feels comfortable expressing themselves in person.

8. “If you don’t like what’s on ObieTalk, don’t go on ObieTalk.” Is that possible? Especially, if you’ve been told that someone’s written something about you?

9. It hurts to be personally attacked on ObieTalk. Being an international student or a freshman (or both), being in a position where you’re trying to make connections is a new place, makes it even worse. You shouldn’t have to feel judged or insecure because of a website.

10. We don’t need an anonymous site. We have real life resources and other sites that people can turn to.

11. We need a support group for people who have been affected by ObieTalk. Something like Alcoholics Anonymous (AA). This could be problematic, but it could be useful too.

12. Posts are connected to email addresses. The owner/moderators should block specific people based on that.

13. There’s a difference between trolling (defined throughout the discussion as being mean/hateful just to anger people) and having strong/hateful, but genuine thoughts, so having names attached will not fully resolve the issue of those kinds of comments.

14. We should evaluate the effectiveness (past and future) of things like “The OC” in introducing new students to what the site.

15. For the sake of mental health and physical safety moderators should have duty report. They have the email addresses of people who may harm themselves and people making threats.

16. The College can block access to sites like ObieTalk, but as more spring up that will be hard. There are technical aspects to things like that which aren’t very feasible.

17. Students should be quicker/more frequently defending their fellow students on ObieTalk when they have been attacked.

18. ObieTalk/anonymous forums is (are) good for engaging in dialogue with people who have opposing views.

19. The people who attack others on ObieTalk are cowards. We should value ourselves and not be concerned with what others say. Boycott. Stop wasting energy on the site. “Divest. Your time is valuable.”

20. We should be proactive and do what we can. We can reconvene and continue talking about this. /We should have a referendum.

21. We can’t ignore discrimination. We have rules against it. It can really harm people.

22. Parents have pointed out that Cornell’s website has a lot of good tips for how to deal with/moderate sites like ObieTalk.

23. If you don’t give your name, you can give anyone else’s name.

24. Moderators should be human. We can’t program something that will be effective.

25. The website is privately owned. The owner does not have to comply with whatever the college administration or other students come up.

May 2

Just a heads-up: there is an Oberlin College Dialogue Center moderated discussion on Obie Talk taking place on Friday, May 4th at 12:15pm in West Lecture Hall. We encourage all to attend.

Thanks for the notice. I was already planning on posting that, once I found the time. Unfortunately, I may not be able to attend.

May 1

queer yr mind: A serious and personal note about anonymous haters...


So my cousin just gave me a code to get back onto ObieTalk. Some of you may remember me mentioning before that I’ve gone through some anonymous shit-talking online in the past that really fucked with my head. Yeah, well, the website where that happened was ObieTalk.

I’m not mad at my cousin,…

Thank you for sharing this. I hope you don’t mind me reblogging it. The way you were treated was inconsiderate and unacceptable. Please continue moving forward and enjoy the good that may come. You deserve to be happy. :-)

May 1

But the devil will find work for idle hands to do: Apparently everyone decided to lose their collective shit about ObieTalk this weekend?


I mean. It always is a wretched hive of scum and villainy, but why now? Why didn’t shit get piled on it three years ago when it started? It’s gone very ‘downhill’ in the last year, I suppose—as someone who regularly goes there to find funny stuff, I know that—but why has everyone centered around…

May 1

The Oberlin Inquirer: Query 1: Obietalk


Last week, Dean of Students Eric Estes and Vice President for Communications Ben Jones have met with Will Adams Keane, the creator and administrator of Obietalk, the anonymous online forum. They agreed upon implementing a system to monitor the content posted on Obietalk.

1- Does this not further…

May 1

graph praxis: am i correct in saying that while oberlin confessional was teeming...


am i correct in saying that while oberlin confessional was teeming with assholes, obietalk quickly became a whole lot worse?

it does seem like ocon was ultimately tamer/less rife with racial slurs

but then again i never saw the worst of either, so.

i used to be really into the idea of keeping…