Blocked by a user inexplicably

Wouldn’t in that case (being harassed or stalked), that the harasser or stalker should just be banned outright? This isn’t the typical social media site at all and blocking users makes little sense from a functionality standpoint.

Spirited discussions regarding taxa are allowed as far as I know. Should this really be enough to exclude a user?


Spirited discussion? Absolutely.
If they block you for not agreeing
that is a case for Help to sort out, and to explain to them How to iNat


It’s perfectly okay to be reactive and leave a comment when challenged instead of proactive and put one every time you disagree. :slightly_smiling_face:
As you said, there is a time component to crafting a response every time re: exactly why you disagree.


You’d be surprised how harassers can use seemingly innocuous actions to harass someone.

Eg. Here the example of a vindictive ex or bully was brought up. Now, on the surface someone like that isn’t doing anything technically wrong by submitting IDs…but they are subtly telling their victim that they are still present, can find them (assuming the observation’s location isn’t obscured), and possibly using dissenting IDs to imply that their victim’s opinions are invalid.

To your point re: banning outright, if there is no paper trail (restraining orders, etc) then how does iNat know which party to suspend in such situations? In that case, blocking makes sense.

Honestly, all that was all stuff I hadn’t even considered until that thread mentioned bullys and exes.

[addendum: fixed link]


I similarly got blocked by someone whom is a well respected iNat user. In fact - I think even a curator…
I’d very politely asked them to change the name of a ‘place’ they had recorded as they used the official name of my workplace but had incorrect geographic boundaries. There were multiple incorrect places all using our official name which was confusing. On behalf of our organisation it simply needed to be tidied up. (Reasonable I thought?)
This was the suggested way to correct the place confusion, provided to me by another curator when I used the help function.
The person in question was a little gruff, but obliged.
A week later I saw he’d blocked me (again from t he banner notification). Prior to this I didn’t even know it was a function!!

Given I found out later this gent was a curator, I feel like it can’t be likely an accidental misuse of the function.
Seemed pretty petty to me. But perhaps I’m getting it wrong :woman_shrugging:t3:


Just wondering: did you submit a separate message for each place? Perhaps they saw multiple submissions as an inconsiderate use of their time and/or overstepping boundries, which was one of the suggested valid use cases for banning in the original thread.

Also, out of curiosity, why did you choose to contact a different curator than the one who suggested that method? Did the first curator specifically suggest this person?

Please note: I’m not trying to suggest you did anything wrong. I don’t know the circumstances of the scenario you describe, so I’m trying to think why they may have blocked you.

I contacted each person who had set up one of the places using our name separately, privately and very politely. The other people I contacted where very happy to oblige as they could understand the issue.
The reason i initially had spoken to a different curator was because i had gone through the ‘help’ function to work out how to rectify the problem. (as i have with other problems ive encountered. The iNat help team is very responsive.) They suggested contacting each person directly and requesting they change the name or delete the place they had created given there was a place with the correct geographic boundaries under that name. (and as the name is our legal brand as well)
Up until that stage i didnt even know i could do that. And it wasnt until after i had contacted them each, and had a disgruntled response from the one in question, that i worked out he was a curator too (i believe). So it wasnt that i was trying to circumvent anyone or get anyone in trouble. Quite frankly he was pretty rude about what was a reasonable request. And even after that i was still polite as i had recognised him as a good contributor to observations across our site.

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And after all that, he blocked me!
I had literally sent one message with the initial request. and a second message (after his grumpy response), apologizing for inconvenience and explaining briefly that it was what i had been directed to do. He never responded again. Just blocked.
Very petty for a grown man really.
Oh well

Now I want to know who the original user referred to is so I can check their IDs…

Maybe he was trying to prevent you from asking him to edit places in the future.
I hope not, because that seems a lot like the OP’s scenario, but with places instead of IDs.

Oh well.

Did you explain to this person what you thought was wrong with the obs and why you wanted it identified the other way. inat is a community and communication is the point. So is learning. It’s not just about training the AI. People need to learn as well which I thought was the ultimate point of this.
I say this only because I will get dissenting IDs with zero explanation, which I just leave alone until other users either verify or disagree. Sometimes I will contact them to ask why, but I usually don’t get a reply so I stopped bothering except for a few I have had actually respond before.

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Yes, you can search for one of OP’s comments in this thread.

Yes. I always explain when asked, too. I really enjoy discourse on here.

They seem to have continued to reupload the plants I’ve identified in the past with the wrong (sometimes of very rare plants despite it being a cultivated tree, for example) identifications. I’m still blocked, of course. So petty.

@tiwane offered to help. Have you given him the links?


Yes, I sent an email to soon after I made this thread and I know they received it and are looking into the situation.

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