The linked email chain is a bit interesting. Basically, nobody involved in this looks good, and we will never probably get the truth of things.
At least seven different people have made credible sexual harassment allegations against Jacob Appelbaum at this point. I don’t know what more evidence you need.
“Jacob actually did wrong people” would seem to be the most parsimonious theory for explaining the facts. Every explanation that doesn’t include that requires a conspiracy of some sort, not that that rules out the possibility.
Credible allegations are, regrettably, not proof.
I think the guy’s a scumbag, but procedure matters.
There are levels of epistemic status between “provable in court” and “as plausible as its opposite”. These levels of support for different theories are actually critical for making decisions about who we associate with, who we trust, and to what extent we trust them. Think about the level of proof that you have for each of the individual bits of information that are gathered about a person in a job interview. There are lots of alternative explanations for many things that a candidate might do, but usually you only care about the most likely one-and-a-half explanations.
This is my argument for why I think it’s reasonable for people to publicly disassociate from someone even if there’s been no, e.g., trial of fact in a court of law.
Fair point, but I’ll also point out that the tendency these days is to immediately blow up into mobs–so, for me at least–the standard of evidence has to be higher than “it’s simpler than a conspiracy and people are saying it”.
There is very much a category for “there’s probably something going on, nobody is going to tell the whole truth, and it doesn’t really affect me–let’s ignore it.”