Make the letsencrypt_bot on Freenode mention ##letsencrypt instead of mindless spamming

Instead of forcing people to join here the bot should suggest the ##letsencrypt channel as an alternative.
The bot spamming as it now does is extremely counter productive. Best choice would be to let #letsencrypt function without official capacity but if for some not-reason you are not going to let that happen, at least suggest the unofficial one.

Hi @emilfihlman,

The bot is working as intended and directing people to the official support forum. If you dislike seeing the spam from the bot replying to users that speak I recommend you leave the channel - its closed anyway.

It's unofficial because we don't suggest folks use it for support. We suggest the community forum instead. I think Freenode power users can find the unofficial channel themselves, for anyone else it isn't the best place to ask for support.

You are forcing your personal opinion on the whole community without asking for the community’s opinion on the matter. This is not the way to handle a community project.

Simply because you feel you don’t have the resources to provide support on IRC does not mean you have to ruin the situation for people on IRC. Nobody is forcing you to provide official help on IRC.

It would be plenty enough to put a warning in the topic about official help only being available on this website and then let those who rather stay on IRC use the channel. I’d like to remind you that this is a community project and community help is help and it doesn’t have to come from just those in power.

Please review this decision and open the #letsencrypt channel again for discussion.

This wasn't my personal decision. It was the consensus of our organization. I'm the only one presently volunteering my time to engage with you about it. Please don't confuse that with it being a decision I made in solitude.

You're free to use the unofficial channel.

Speaking personally now: A very small number of people have complained about the official IRC channel being closed in the two weeks since the change was made. The few that have are consistently engaging the topic aggressively and with questionable framing. To me this sort of pattern affirms that closing the IRC channel was the correct decision. Its few primary proponents don't exemplify our community guidelines.

I am aware: "you" was used to indicate the moderating organisation engaged here, not you as a single person. Sorry for the confusion in that. "You" is used in general to refer to the organisation unless specifically marked otherwise.

This is not the matter here though. While you are not interested in using IRC, and you don't have to, it is unnecessary and frankly damaging to force people to this website and ruin a perfectly functioning channel.
The proposal is to either let us use the #letsencrypt (and of course mark in the topic that the only official help is available in this website) channel in unofficial capacity or change the bot message to also mention ##letsencrypt. Neither costs you anything and frankly both actually benefit the organisation and foster inclusive and low threshold community engagement and community support.

Because you have opted to make this decision without consulting your community and userbase and you have no public statistics, that is again the personal opinion of the moderating organisation, not the community as a whole. Also simply because people don't want a perfectly good channel ruined does not mean closing the channel was the correct decision: your logic does not follow in any way from that since spam and abusive behaviour can just as well appear on this website. Also to make it clear, I am not in any way affiliated with anyone else who might have posted here or on IRC regarding this issue. Suggesting such connection is absolutely unwelcoming and borders on harassment and frankly, the decision to close the channel breaks your own guidelines by harassing IRC users and forcing your identity on them since IRC is an important aspect of people's identity.

Please review the decision to close the channel and open #letsencrypt again for discussion or change the bot to point at ##letsencrypt. The first one is is preferable.

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Hi @emilfihlman,

I think we’ll have to agree to disagree on this one. Our experience running the official IRC channel for three years has been that it takes a lot more effort to provide the same amount of support there as anywhere else, and the risk / reward tradeoff is pretty bad. Besides the difficulty of moderating the channel during off hours, you may have noticed that Freenode has been under a prolonged spam wave. Combating the spam has both consumed a lot of moderator time and limited the usefulness of the channel.

I appreciate you making your opinion known. I don’t think we’re likely to convince each other on this one, so I’m closing this thread for now.