The Tisane Affair was an episode of HCM which took place in August 2012.

What set the Tisane Affair apart from typical instances of HCM was that the question at hand was not only an argument over procedural matters, but it also brought into question whether RationalWiki should maintain an absolute commitment to the right to free speech no matter what ideas that right was used to promote--even if said speech appeared to advocate criminal behaviour of the worst kind.

On 25 August, Tisane -- an unpopular user with a record of making edits that other users did not like -- wrote an essay titled "There is a lack of strong evidence and sound logic for concluding that there is a high likelihood of severe harm from child-adult sex." The essay could be read at worst as a defence of pedophilia and at best as a troll JAQing off.[1]The essay was so controversial that Sophie deleted it on sight, and even AD, an editor known for his open-mindedness and desire to keep an even keel[2] found its content unsuitable for the wiki, recreating the essay and vaping it anew moments later.

Sometime after the essay was vaped, Tisane made a comment on the relevant talk page that sent TheoryOfPractice into a predictable moralizing tizzy.[3] ToP brought Tisane to the Coop,[4] and began a wheel-war, unilaterally promoting and blocking Tisane; AD briefly removed ToP's rights in an attempt to cool things down.

The argument polarized, and a vote on a 2 year ban was initiated. This argument slowly devolved from being one about whether or not Tisane should be banned into an argument about the limits of "free speech" on the wiki. The Affair came to an end on 28 August when AD, following a discussion with some mods, banned Tisane for one year, archived the coop and memory-holed the talk page for the offensive essay. The case for banning Tisane was leading at the time, albeit just short of the 2/3rds majority, and the vote still had a few days to run.

Psygremlin and TheoryOfPractice both LANCB over the incident, shrieking as they went.


Following his banning, Tisane went on a butthurt rampage, creating essays on his various wikis, Libertapedia, Nathania, and even creating a new RationalWikiWikiWiki. This continued for a few days, until the legal threats and notices started coming from his site hosts, resulting in the death of both his bliki, and his RationalWikiWikiWiki, which resurfaced later after a couple of changes of webhost.


  3. The essay in question and its talk page have been memory-holed, so no diffs are available at this time
  4. [1]