In response to this question here:

How can we on this site put pressure on SO/SE to carry out Monica's requests?

I wanted to let the members in support of Monica who have changed their user names, profile images, etc. that you are having an impact.

Though relatively new to the Writing SE, I have been a fairly active member of the site (in the top 3% over the last year) but have been a bit quiet lately due to writing commitments. I came back today for a quick break and to see if there was anything I could answer and, through your actions, learned of what SE has done to Monica Cellio.

You are reaching users.

I voted for Monica to be a moderator because her responses have always been kind, helpful and considered.

Though I support the writing community, I cannot, with a clean conscience, continue to participate on this site since:

“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.”

I have changed my profile image, display name, and about me. I have tried to sign the letter, but that no longer seems to be working.


My suggestion for what can be done is for all regular users of SE to withdraw, leaving behind a few users who can respond to questions with comments only that say something to the effect of:

'Until Monica Cellio is reinstated without being forced through SE's reinstatement process, until all negative statements about her are retracted, and until SE publicise a full and candid personal apology to Monica, we are not participating in this stack.'

If questions remain unanswered, traffic will decline. Through your display names, you will reach users. Through links, users will be able to track the progress of events.

In the meantime, I am on hiatus. But I will check back and, if there is support for this suggestion, I will contribute to questions with comments in this way.

If it is felt that this is not an appropriate solution, I will simply remain on hiatus until I see an appropriate response from SE.

Good luck Monica, I hope you get the solutions you've requested and can put this behind you. And best wishes to you all. It's been a pleasure.

  • 4
    If signing the letter doesn't work anymore, there are also other ways to contribute.
    – Troyen
    Commented Nov 1, 2019 at 3:47
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    @Troyen Thanks for the link...done.
    – GGx
    Commented Nov 1, 2019 at 7:37
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    I'm already on hiatus, and I'd gladly resume activity with the aforesaid comments. I avoid going to the list of questions because there are times where I really want to to help, but, as you said, how can one carry on business as usual when no positive action is taken by who is in charge? Commented Nov 1, 2019 at 8:00
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    @SaraCosta I felt the same, and it's a tricky one because if the users hadn't responded to questions with their changed display names, I would never have found out what happened. The moderators have taken a stand by resigning, but it got me thinking about how we, as users, can make a difference. A hiatus feels necessary, but it will only have an impact as a collective, and many users won't be aware. Comments will make them aware. Whilst I think Monica is absolutely doing the right thing by taking legal action to clear her name, I believe SE will settle that out of court and, once again...
    – GGx
    Commented Nov 1, 2019 at 8:11
  • 1
    try to make this go away as quietly as possible. Will they...reinstate Monica then? Will they give her a public personal apology then? Will the other moderators then feel able to have open discussions without fear of being publicly hauled across the coals for expressing an opinion?
    – GGx
    Commented Nov 1, 2019 at 8:11
  • 1
    I appreciate all the comments and answers. You can probably tell from my wording that I wasn't convinced it was an appropriate solution. I agree, I also still want to do my bit as part of the writing community. The problem is that I don't feel the same about this site any more, I feel angry being on their page. It's okay to say Monica should pursue this via the courts but, even with our donations, that's an extremely stressful / time consuming process which she shouldn't have to suffer. I've joined another group which is warm and helpful and I'm putting questions and answers there now instead.
    – GGx
    Commented Nov 7, 2019 at 18:24
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    I'd like to see us take our community and our content and go elsewhere, but I know that's a big job. We have a great community here, and because of SE's actions it hurts to be here, at least for some of us. :-( Commented Nov 7, 2019 at 23:17
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    "If questions remain unanswered, traffic will decline." And? If this site's activity declines to zero, SE will just shrug and close down the Writing site. Commented Nov 8, 2019 at 15:06
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    @MonicaCellio I fear it may be too late for that. We've already lost a considerable number of our most active members, including your good self - and as of 21 hours ago, the OP of this Meta question, so it would seem. Those of us who remain can up sticks and move somewhere else, but I feel like the damage has already been done to our numbers and overall activity.
    – F1Krazy Mod
    Commented Nov 8, 2019 at 16:15
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    @F1Krazy so long as they still have accounts they can be pinged with news, if there's news. Yes, the longer it takes the more likely we are to lose them entirely, but I think we've still got people who want to have a strong writing community but aren't so convinced we can do it here. Commented Nov 8, 2019 at 16:27
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    @GGx-ReinstateMonicaCellio What is this group? Link? Commented Nov 9, 2019 at 0:31
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    I would love to participate in a move of this community to a platform where the platform itself does now "own" the community... (Yes, I understand it's not a technically easy thing to do... And I can't contribute at the infrastructure level... But I'd love to participate in a relocated community) Commented Nov 18, 2019 at 14:23
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    @ThomasReinstateMonicaMyron the group I've joined is an indie community as I'm interested in becoming a hybrid author with close control over which rights I keep and sell. So it suits me, but probably won't suit a lot of authors here who are fixed on the trad route. But there are alternatives...
    – GGx
    Commented Nov 18, 2019 at 15:15
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    @GGx-ReinstateMonicaCellio have you heard about the Codidact project? Commented Nov 18, 2019 at 15:20
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    @MonicaCellio No, but hopefully it has potential.
    – GGx
    Commented Nov 19, 2019 at 15:02

2 Answers 2


My compromise was to donate to Monica's Approach, which I think is a strong case, but continue to answer questions. I came to this site (and world-building), to help people become better writers.

I was a professor, working in a University with corrupt leadership. That did not make me skip a beat in helping students, it made me work parallel to the system to eject the corrupt. Unsuccessfully, but not entirely without impact.

I worked for a hospital system that, it turned out, was notoriously corrupt at the top. Investigations, criminal charges of fraud and self-dealing, full of sociopaths at the top. Nevertheless, I did not stop doing my job to contribute to the care of patients. I was not corrupt, and if I quit to punish the crooks, I harm the patients, and actually increase the ratio of corrupt vs. honorable in the hospital.

I think the same principles apply here, if I quit answering questions, I hurt the students far more than I harm the bullies, and IMO that is a net loss of karma.

The way to punish the bullying is not to withhold your services from those you wanted to help in the first place. Let the courts handle it. Help make sure the resources are there for that to happen. What they did to Monica is IMO inexcusable, I don't think any judge or jury will decide differently. I am not inclined to try and persuade them to change their mind, I am far more inclined to exercise the legal remedies available to us, because they can't just blow off a court decision.

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    This. This right here. Us leaving will hurt innocent users who have no inkling of what's going on and why they are being ignored, far more than it will hurt SE. Commented Nov 7, 2019 at 7:21
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    I hate to admit it, but I have to agree. We've managed to turn this site into an answer wasteland, and SE doesn't even care. I've doubled my donation to Monica and I'm returning to work.
    – user36961
    Commented Nov 7, 2019 at 23:16
  • @EvilSparrow-ReinstateMonica The community is too small for them to notice or care, unfortunately. If everyone that upvoted the angry MSE thread (~2k people) stopped participating, that's still a tiny fraction of the userbase SE sees daily. The activity stats have barely shown a dent and long-term damage from active community members leaving won't fully show up for years (because all the stuff they've already written is still on the site).
    – Troyen
    Commented Nov 14, 2019 at 20:57

For reasons that Amadeus has penned more eloquently than I can, I don't think leaving Writers is going to make SE notice us. It will only hurt the innocent users who don't know what's going on.

There is, however, a supreme lack of other options. Other feasible options, that is. But there's one which I actually have not seen discussed anywhere, and which would not harm any innocent bystanders, and only takes a few minutes to do.

Use the Contact Us page. Write directly to SE. Keep it calm and logical, but give them incentive to listen: in every message, explain what you feel they have done wrong, and that you intend on supporting Monica in the upcoming legal action. If they get enough of these messages, they'll pay attention. If they don't, then they are fools and we really should all leave now. Close every message by explaining what Monica has requested they do, and how doing so will prevent any legal repercussions (which is my understanding of where Monica stands on this).

Do you think this is a logical route to take?

  • 2
    At least it does feels more than just changing a nickname.
    – Liquid
    Commented Nov 11, 2019 at 13:29

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