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Offline Shad

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Re: Over-moderation killing forum appeal?
« Reply #40 on: January 2, 2014, 01:32:06 AM »
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The rules are pretty beslubbering simple. Be polite. Post on topic. Don't be a douchebag.
The existence of that "netiquette" thingie Irisado linked is a proof that you can't approach forum in a completely relaxed manner. If you dissect it, it is full of things which are too obvious, not applicable to hobby forum (people don't come to an army forum to discuss weather), de-facto harmless (posting in old threads won't make anyone die) or extremely obscure (in the end, it's the moderator's call what is an offtopic - from a sudden discussion on one race in a forum of another to a very blurry line like comparing one troop choice with other troop choice from the same codex).

All these pointless artifacts are beloved by moderators on many forums and are enforced onto communities, but if it be my call, like GreatBigTree said, I would "let it slide", and I think it would be more healthy for forum and friendly to newcomers.

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you have spent so much time online surrounded by douchebags
True, but at least those are honest and direct douchebags and they do not surround themselves with barricades made of neutral speech directed to some generalized audience. "I am not saying Shad is an idiot and should shut up or get out... but Shad is an idiot".
« Last Edit: January 2, 2014, 03:16:37 AM by Shad »

Offline Benis

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Re: Over-moderation killing forum appeal?
« Reply #41 on: January 2, 2014, 06:58:30 AM »
I think no one wants this to be a lawless place but there are huge differences in how law is applied. A couple of years back there used to be a larger level of common sense and less automatic responses from the moderators, or at least from some moderators. But right now, or more like for half a year ago when I actually read this site about once a day, the feeling you continuously got was moderators enforcing the rules with no regard to what effects it had, especially the diffuse off-topic one or mere reminding people of the rule in green/blue boxes. I've felt the greatest reason for the slowdown of this forum and loss of veteran members have been this general increase in over-moderation. I personally find it very annoying and I have met several of the moderators, including Irisado, in meat space but I still find the current culture bothersome and something that greatly reduces my aspirations to participate in this site.

There have been differences over the years as to how the site's netiquette has been interpreted and different parts of the forum could have different take on it depending on the local moderator. This seems to have been largely removed due to the general lack of posts and the fact that some of the more relaxed moderators have gone on to other things.

I still enjoy reading here and comment the occasional post but for me and, within the last year, many other longtime veterans the step to actually push the reply button have become increasingly more difficult.  :(

Offline Killing Time

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Re: Over-moderation killing forum appeal?
« Reply #42 on: January 2, 2014, 08:47:03 AM »
What Benis said.

I'm all for a no tolerance approach to spamming and flaming, but the site has become increasingly inflexible over the past few years with regards to what constitutes as off topic posting and it really stifles discussion.
I object to having a post moderated when a natural digression in the discussion has taken place, and in the confines of the internet this approach can be infuriating - something I'm sure is not the intention but often ends up being the result.
A lot of the veterans I know in meatspace are highly educated and erudite people, and having some faceless mod smack them on the wrist for straying even slightly beyond the boundaries of some arbitrary "on topic" boundaries is downright insulting and patronising.
Having spoken to quite a few of them about the slowdown I know that this nanny state approach to modding is the primary reason that many of them have stopped posting.

If the site wants to appear to be child friendly that's fine. But that doesn't mean you have to treat us all like children. In fact if you treated even the children like adults you might find that they tend to grow up.

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Re: Over-moderation killing forum appeal?
« Reply #43 on: January 2, 2014, 08:57:21 AM »
There is the other option, which is 'I got moderated on a gaming site--so beslubbering what?' No actual injury has occurred. Move on with your life. Post away. Get moderated. Proceed not to let this upset your mental balance.

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you have spent so much time online surrounded by douchebags
True, but at least those are honest and direct douchebags and they do not surround themselves with barricades made of neutral speech directed to some generalized audience. "I am not saying Shad is an idiot and should shut up or get out... but Shad is an idiot".

The whole reason you're posting here isn't out of some kind of benevolent concern for the health of this forum. The whole reason you're posting in this thread is because a mod put some green text on one of your posts in Eldar forum because you needlessly insulted someone and you throwing a modest little tantrum over it. I was indirect because I wasn't just talking to you--you really aren't that important, as I expect you'll not be posting here often given the chip on your shoulder--but as a general artifact for anyone who reads this thread in the future to digest. 'Netiquette' can also simply be referred to as 'etiquette'. If you possess it in the real world, you can also possess it here. It isn't rocket science.

I do agree that the off-topic moderation issues can be a trifle overzealous. I also don't think *any* of it is a big deal. There is nothing in the universe stopping somebody from just saying 'oh, okay--let me start a new thread and link to it here', which I have done on several occasions and works just fine. It also keeps the threads clear, useful, and easy to read. 


[gmod]Removed inflammatory comment.[/gmod]
« Last Edit: January 2, 2014, 11:19:46 AM by Grand Master Lomandalis »

Offline Killing Time

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Re: Over-moderation killing forum appeal?
« Reply #44 on: January 2, 2014, 09:13:01 AM »
There is the other option, which is 'I got moderated on a gaming site--so beslubbering what?' No actual injury has occurred. Move on with your life. Post away. Get moderated. Proceed not to let this upset your mental balance.
...

I do agree that the off-topic moderation issues can be a trifle overzealous. I also don't think *any* of it is a big deal. There is nothing in the universe stopping somebody from just saying 'oh, okay--let me start a new thread and link to it here', which I have done on several occasions and works just fine. It also keeps the threads clear, useful, and easy to read.

You're right, it's not the end of the world to get modded.
It can be really bloody annoying though, and when you feel like you're trying to contribute something to a community where lateral thinking might actually be a positive thing, it's not surprising people just give up bothering to post.
It's not the end of the world to get modded, but this site isn't the be all and end all either, and when push comes to shove a lot of smart gamers with a lot to offer have decided that it's just not worth upsetting their mental balance over.

All we're asking for is a little flexibility rather than the one-size-fits-all approach that seems to be currently in vogue.
Sometimes a digression really is pertinent to the discussion at hand.

Offline Shad

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Re: Over-moderation killing forum appeal?
« Reply #45 on: January 2, 2014, 10:32:26 AM »
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The whole reason you're posting here isn't out of some kind of benevolent concern for the health of this forum. The whole reason you're posting in this thread is because a mod put some green text on one of your posts in Eldar forum because you needlessly insulted someone and you throwing a modest little tantrum over it.
I do not needlessly insult people. If I would ever throw a punch at anybody, it probably would be justified and understandable, and rarely for a simple act of mischief. And it's not the first time my post gets edited. However, it was first time I actually noticed that there are other people who feel same as I do and even created a topic for it, so, here I am.
You are right in regards that I have problem with what is in general considered right or wrong for moderator to do. But it only feels so alien to you because you are used to places where that is a norm, while I am used to places where people are able to communicate without having Big Brother constantly fixing and cleaning things after them.

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'Netiquette' can also simply be referred to as 'etiquette'. If you possess it in the real world, you can also possess it here.
No, the way people are enforced to discuss in internet often radically differs from real life, with a lot of misconceptions and rules which moderators undertake just to feel busy or out of fear that forum would sink into "flamewars" or start producing "too much heat" or offend somebody.

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I do agree that the off-topic moderation issues can be a trifle overzealous. I also don't think *any* of it is a big deal.
If you agree and also don't find it a big deal, why do you run around calling everybody idiots? I mean, I at least have a reason of disagreeing about same points.

No, it's not the end of the world, but I did find these forums more fun to read before that started to happen more often.
« Last Edit: January 2, 2014, 11:19:58 AM by Grand Master Lomandalis »

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Re: Over-moderation killing forum appeal?
« Reply #46 on: January 2, 2014, 10:39:16 AM »
[mod]Enough with the thinly veiled references to calling each other idiots please.[/mod]

Having spoken to quite a few of them about the slowdown I know that this nanny state approach to modding is the primary reason that many of them have stopped posting.

Equally, I've been in contact with a lot of the former regulars from the US/Canada side of the Atlantic who used to be very active here, and they don't come here any more because they don't have time, so it depends on who you talk to.  It's also worth pointing out that some of the people you're referring to were mainly only contributing in one restricted access board anyway, so I would argue that their contributions to the forum had dropped long before the slowdown.
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Offline Benis

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Re: Over-moderation killing forum appeal?
« Reply #47 on: January 2, 2014, 10:52:23 AM »
Generally speaking people do react to encountering "the law" no matter how benevolent it might be, it is a very clear sign reminding you that your freedom is only granted by an outside force (just recall how you feel when stopped by cop even though you know you have done nothing wrong). Lately (as in the last few years) moderation have gone to being more visible (the coloured boxes) and the moderators seem to take more joy in bringing the slapdown (or in just keeping the place "tidy"). Sure, it is not a big thing but it is enough to stiffle a lot of the interest and in turn make members who once was participating into leaving the place and that, at least to me, is a big deal. Just take a look on the last year and see that almost all non-moderator veteran members have more or less left, Wyddr being one of the great exceptions (and one of the reasons I still check in once in a while).

We have had this discussion before though and it seems to not matter what we veterans say and by now most simply won't bother so the damage is already done. People don't like nanny state or the authority micromanaging in their affairs and this site is a prime example of what people do in such regimes if they have the opportunity; they leave.

It's also worth pointing out that some of the people you're referring to were mainly only contributing in one restricted access board anyway, so I would argue that their contributions to the forum had dropped long before the slowdown.

Which is a bit of a red herring, given that a lot of them used to participate openly but got tired of the regime so they mostly stayed in the area where the old ways were still, until recently, allowed while others were highly participating members (as you well know). Given that most penguins have posts in the 1000+ range (Hymirl for example has more than 10000 mostly well-constructed posts) it feels quite a bit revisionistic to claim they weren't contributing anymore.


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Re: Over-moderation killing forum appeal?
« Reply #48 on: January 2, 2014, 11:06:05 AM »
Which is a bit of a red herring, given that a lot of them used to participate openly but got tired of the regime so they mostly stayed in the area where the old ways were still, until recently, allowed while others were highly participating members (as you well know). Given that most penguins have posts in the 1000+ range (Hymirl for example has more than 10000 mostly well-constructed posts) it feels quite a bit revisionistic to claim they weren't contributing anymore.

Very few were actively participating members.  I've pointed this out before, and you know where to look if you want to check, so it's hardly revisionist.  It's also worth reminding everyone that veterans of all types do start to drop out after a while, because they stop playing the game or have too many real life commitments.  The problem comes when there's nobody taking their place, and the reasons for that have already been covered in this thread, as well as previous discussions in the Space Tavern.



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Re: Over-moderation killing forum appeal?
« Reply #49 on: January 2, 2014, 11:12:38 AM »
I do have a banhammer, and operating it takes a few simple clicks, that much is technically true.  However, there are numerous procedures for banning someone.  Several years back we implemented a list of people who had violated the rules, a cumulative list of points with annotations for each offense, and made it policy that every time someone violates the rules she gets a notification, whether via a note in the thread or a personal message.  The user gets a link to the 40kOnline rules each time.  The list means that each time someone gets docked, the staff member's name is logged as well as the reason for the offense, all for the sake of accountability.  After earning enough "bad points" a user gets a warning, a title, a final warning, and so on.  Hell, we even hold a vote on whether or not a person should be banned when they accumulate the threshold number of points.

After a certain number of posts the "bad points" shrinks.  In some cases, a user behaves for long enough that punitive titles disappear and privileges restored.  It is rare to have a problem user in the first place, but also rare that someone ever needs to have their profile "restored" or reformed through good behavior.
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Offline Killing Time

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Re: Over-moderation killing forum appeal?
« Reply #50 on: January 2, 2014, 11:26:42 AM »
Very few were actively participating members...

Ever decreasing circles.
The point Benis makes is that they were becoming less active in their public posting BECAUSE the regime tightened up.
When it tightened up on the private board they stopped posting there too.
I know. I've spoke to many of them.
I am one of them.

The head in sand policy is quite bizarre. Do you want constructive feedback from contributing members or do you want to run the place into the ground without revising policy when it might be failing?
It's like the worst excesses of politicians who'd rather ruin a country's economy than be seen to make a policy u-turn.

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Re: Over-moderation killing forum appeal?
« Reply #51 on: January 2, 2014, 11:39:19 AM »
Ever decreasing circles.
The point Benis makes is that they were becoming less active in their public posting BECAUSE the regime tightened up.
When it tightened up on the private board they stopped posting there too.
I know. I've spoke to many of them.
I am one of them.

Yet, I've spoken to people who have been here for years who don't frequent any more for the reasons which I gave earlier and in other threads, and you don't take any account of this.  You also don't take any account of the problems caused in attracting new members which are well documented by forum admins across the internet on SMF, and the problems caused by competition from Facebook, Twitter, and blogs, none of which were as popular when this forum was at its most active.

You and the group of Bristol veterans may well hold the view which you do, but that's not representative of the wider issues which I keep referring to.  The question for this and other forums is how to attract more new members.  That is what needs to be focused on.  There's no value in keep going back over the past and arguing about it.  It doesn't take us forward at all.

I've also made it clear to you on a number of occasions that I value immensely your contributions to the Eldar boards here, and encouraged you to make more of them.  I don't understand why, therefore, you want to keep going over the past all the time.

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The head in sand policy is quite bizarre. Do you want constructive feedback from contributing members or do you want to run the place into the ground without revising policy when it might be failing?

I don't see much constructive feedback, sadly.

The feedback that I have asked for on numerous occasions in the past is for people across the whole forum to produce more content, and to make suggestions on the sort of content we need to attract new blood.  We've tried to make the forum more user friendly, introduced some new features, and tinkered around with the front page to make it more appealing, but it hasn't worked.  Because people can now get content from all over Facebook, Twitter, and blogs, we need to improve our content to compete with that.

If we have better content people will come, but at the moment we don't, because people are not producing it.  We need new tactical articles for sixth edition for all the armies, more unit guides, more battle reports (Wyddr does a great job, but we can't just leave it all to him), more fiction, more painting guides, more of just about everything.  Real life gets in the way all the time, and none of what I have just said is a criticism of anyone on this site.  I appreciate just how difficult it is to find the time to do all this stuff, but somehow the site needs more people to get involved to produce it.  If we have good material to promote, people will come to read it, regardless of the moderation policy.
« Last Edit: January 2, 2014, 11:41:18 AM by Irisado »
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Offline Grand Master Lomandalis

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Re: Over-moderation killing forum appeal?
« Reply #52 on: January 2, 2014, 12:05:23 PM »
I do not needlessly insult people. If I would ever throw a punch at anybody, it probably would be justified and understandable, and rarely for a simple act of mischief.
Insulting someone, whether you believe it is needless or required, is against the forum rules.  You agreed to abide by those rules when you signed up to this forum.  It really is as simple as that.

Which is a bit of a red herring, given that a lot of them used to participate openly but got tired of the regime so they mostly stayed in the area where the old ways were still, until recently, allowed while others were highly participating members (as you well know). Given that most penguins have posts in the 1000+ range (Hymirl for example has more than 10000 mostly well-constructed posts) it feels quite a bit revisionistic to claim they weren't contributing anymore.
"Where the old ways were still the same"?  Really?  Please Benis, enlighten me as to a time in the 11 years you have been a member of this community when we have ever allowed the type of posting that went on in the Penguins board?  More specifically, when have we ever allowed comments along the lines of those posted in the "Foolish things..." thread to be posted outside of that board?

No, what was happening in that case is that the veteran members thought that the regular people of the community did not have valid comments to make and as such kept to their little corner of the forums as opposed to contributing to the whole. 

How many army lists were posted in that board because they didn't want to get comments from Joe Nobody?  How many tactical discussions?

What drove most of these "veterans" away is that the staff came to the conclusion that the forum rules would be applied to the veterans board to the full extent.  What drove them away is that we told them that posts that can be placed in the public boards are required to be made in the public boards.  What drove them away is that we closed down their thread of rage against the community and said that those types of posts were not appropriate anywhere, regardless as to whether the general public can see the thread or not.

Given that most penguins have posts in the 1000+ range (Hymirl for example has more than 10000 mostly well-constructed posts) it feels quite a bit revisionistic to claim they weren't contributing anymore.
And yet, Hymirl is the one of the more common reasons I had received messages from people saying they were leaving the community, because of the "Old boys" feel and "special treatment" they saw on the boards. 

But you are correct, most penguins do have posts in the 1000+ range.  But if people with 1000+ posts stop contributing to the public boards and only post in the secluded sections, then they aren't contributing, yet their post count keeps rising.  That is the point Irisado keeps trying to make.

I am a perfect example of this as well.  I am getting close to the 10,000 post mark and yet the past year and a half my posting has drastically slowed.  Why?  For the simple reason that I am no longer a kid.  I became a moderator when I was 17 and the latest I worked till was 3pm.  I made an adamant point that nothing would interfere with my regular gaming night (which was on Thursdays), even had that be the cause of a break up with a girlfriend when I was 19.  But it wasn't until last year that everything came together and in my life, through work and also volunteering with the local sea cadet corps, that I just don't have the time for a lot of things any more.

It has gotten to the point that my regular Thursday night gaming, where I would go every week like clockwork, has been reduced to only attending during Christmas, March Break, and the Summer Vacation.

There have been times where I go to respond to a thread, look at the time, and realize I have somewhere I need to be.  The joys of being a responsible adult now is I don't have time.
« Last Edit: January 2, 2014, 12:07:56 PM by Grand Master Lomandalis »
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Re: Over-moderation killing forum appeal?
« Reply #53 on: January 2, 2014, 12:28:52 PM »
beslubber. The internet ate my post.

Long story short:

Here's the constructive feedback.
Why maintain a policy which is widely seen as unpopular if it responsible for even some of the problems with retaining members over the past couple of years.
If it causes even some people to leave or to avoid joining in the first place then surely it needs to be reviewed.

Gently easing off with the mod stick will promote broader posting and a happier community far more effectively than dishing out runes and custom titles.
You might as well admit that you believe everyone should be treated like 6 year old children, with a fence around their designated safe play area and gold stars for good behaviour.

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Re: Over-moderation killing forum appeal?
« Reply #54 on: January 2, 2014, 12:33:12 PM »
If you've got ways to improve the Eldar PoC system, get together with Valar, sort out a fully worked out proposal, and send it to me via PM.  You were made Autarchs for that very reason.  I'm more than happy for the two of you to run the Eldar PoC.
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Offline Benis

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Re: Over-moderation killing forum appeal?
« Reply #55 on: January 2, 2014, 12:39:21 PM »
The feedback that I have asked for on numerous occasions in the past is for people across the whole forum to produce more content, and to make suggestions on the sort of content we need to attract new blood.  We've tried to make the forum more user friendly, introduced some new features, and tinkered around with the front page to make it more appealing, but it hasn't worked.  Because people can now get content from all over Facebook, Twitter, and blogs, we need to improve our content to compete with that.

This isn't feedback, this is active participation which isn't the same thing. I'm sorry too that the forum has slowed down and that many members have left but if the staff won't listen to members on the verge of leaving when they explain their reasoning for leaving you will never get any of that active participation you want. If you ask for participation but don't get it isn't the logical thing to do to listen to the ones who actually come with feedback about why they don't feel like participating? Yes, many move on due to reasons of time and such but those are lost in any case no matter how awesome the forum is, the ones who state that their lack of participation is due to the regime should be of more interest since they are clearly willing to participate at some point in the future if the system changed (though at this point it is mostly semantics given that few of those are likely to return again). The constant mantra of excuses concerning blogs, twitter etc (who the hell gets their warhammer read done on twitter?), or head in the sand as Killing Time says, isn't really endearing either but just a way to say that nothing is the moderators fault, it is just outside forces even though members here in this very thread state that their lack of participation is due to the moderation.

"Where the old ways were still the same"?  Really?  Please Benis, enlighten me as to a time in the 11 years you have been a member of this community when we have ever allowed the type of posting that went on in the Penguins board?  More specifically, when have we ever allowed comments along the lines of those posted in the "Foolish things..." thread to be posted outside of that board?

No, not the actual nastier parts such as the foolish things thread but in general the more banter-like nature that were allowed in the penguin board, with few off-topic warnings and the thread splits that did occur where generally done in a helpful manner. I'm sure you know what I mean.

No, what was happening in that case is that the veteran members thought that the regular people of the community did not have valid comments to make and as such kept to their little corner of the forums as opposed to contributing to the whole. 

How many army lists were posted in that board because they didn't want to get comments from Joe Nobody?  How many tactical discussions?

This is true, but so what? The grand idea that limiting the penguin board would free up posts for the rest of the community is quite clearly just a fanciful dream, as most of us penguins declared when it was happening. Instead people left the site completely and who have gained from that? Did it really hurt that some people almost exclusively posted in a hidden part of the forum when the other option would have been for them not to post at all on this site? I personally felt that the continued life of the penguin board made me want to be more active on the forum in general, not only on that board and I'm sure others felt the same.

What drove most of these "veterans" away is that the staff came to the conclusion that the forum rules would be applied to the veterans board to the full extent.  What drove them away is that we told them that posts that can be placed in the public boards are required to be made in the public boards.  What drove them away is that we closed down their thread of rage against the community and said that those types of posts were not appropriate anywhere, regardless as to whether the general public can see the thread or not.

Again, is this a good thing? Yes, the murkier parts of that board probably needed to be removed but given the actual result was the intended purpose to get rid of all the penguin veterans?

But you are correct, most penguins do have posts in the 1000+ range.  But if people with 1000+ posts stop contributing to the public boards and only post in the secluded sections, then they aren't contributing, yet their post count keeps rising.  That is the point Irisado keeps trying to make.

As far as I am aware you do not in fact get post count for the off-topic boards so that point is moot (if I am correct). I would say that many penguins upon getting elivated actually upped their community participation or remained largely unchanged.

I do think the specific penguin discussion is both off-topic and a rehash of old material we both know backwards and forwards though. ;)

If you've got ways to improve the Eldar PoC system, get together with Valar, sort out a fully worked out proposal, and send it to me via PM.  You were made Autarchs for that very reason.  I'm more than happy for the two of you to run the Eldar PoC.

It seems like you simply do not get the problem here, Irisado, people lack the initial desire to participate, not ways to do so.  We've always been at war with Eastasia, I get that now.

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Re: Over-moderation killing forum appeal?
« Reply #56 on: January 2, 2014, 01:03:53 PM »
If you've got ways to improve the Eldar PoC system, get together with Valar, sort out a fully worked out proposal, and send it to me via PM.  You were made Autarchs for that very reason.  I'm more than happy for the two of you to run the Eldar PoC.

Sigh.
The Eldar PoC is fine.
The forum as a whole has a problem.

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Re: Over-moderation killing forum appeal?
« Reply #57 on: January 2, 2014, 01:08:51 PM »
This isn't feedback, this is active participation which isn't the same thing. I'm sorry too that the forum has slowed down and that many members have left but if the staff won't listen to members on the verge of leaving when they explain their reasoning for leaving you will never get any of that active participation you want. If you ask for participation but don't get it isn't the logical thing to do to listen to the ones who actually come with feedback about why they don't feel like participating? Yes, many move on due to reasons of time and such but those are lost in any case no matter how awesome the forum is, the ones who state that their lack of participation is due to the regime should be of more interest since they are clearly willing to participate at some point in the future if the system changed (though at this point it is mostly semantics given that few of those are likely to return again). The constant mantra of excuses concerning blogs, twitter etc (who the hell gets their warhammer read done on twitter?), or head in the sand as Killing Time says, isn't really endearing either but just a way to say that nothing is the moderators fault, it is just outside forces even though members here in this very thread state that their lack of participation is due to the moderation.

Asking for people to provide suggestions for content to make the site better is an issue of feedback.  I perhaps didn't make that very clear, but that's what I was referring to.  Every time I ask for suggestions for what content needs to be added to make the forum more appealing, there is nothing but silence.

The points I continually make about the competition are not excuses.  Go to SMF's site, read the threads there posted by admins pleading for advice about how to get people involved on their forums and see for yourself.  Here are three example threads, and there's plenty more where these came from:

[Suggestions Needed] Project: Boosting Activity Back in an ex-Popular Forum
How do I get new active members? (used to have a pretty active community)
How to get new members

Activity is also down on other wargaming forums.  WarSeer's 40K section has significantly lower activity than before, activity on dedicated 40K forums like Second Sphere and Tau Online is well down.  It is not just this forum which has an activity problem, so the argument that you're making is based entirely on how you personally feel (which I won't take away from you, even though I disagree with you), and correlation.  Correlation is not causation.

If I take a look at blogs, the large ones are thriving.  There is lots of activity there.  I've also had anecdotal reports of more and more people using Facebook to discuss 40K, and Twitter is used for things like release notifications from GW and that sort of thing, so there's no need for people to come to a forum to get that sort of information either, and then they discuss it with their friends on Facebook not here.

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It seems like you simply do not get the problem here, Irisado, people lack the initial desire to participate, not ways to do so.  We've always been at war with Eastasia, I get that now.

They lack desire, because they're getting what they need from other sources (see above), and so the cycle continues.  We need to offer things to entice newbies to the forum, and we're not doing that well in that regard at the moment.

One additional thought is that moderation here was noticed a lot less in the past, because there was so much activity and discussion that it was quickly forgotten about in the majority of cases.  When it is necessary to moderate now it remains prominent for longer, owing to the fact that the same threads stay at the top of each board for much longer than they used to.
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Re: Over-moderation killing forum appeal?
« Reply #58 on: January 2, 2014, 01:11:17 PM »
"Where the old ways were still the same"?  Really?  Please Benis, enlighten me as to a time in the 11 years you have been a member of this community when we have ever allowed the type of posting that went on in the Penguins board?  More specifically, when have we ever allowed comments along the lines of those posted in the "Foolish things..." thread to be posted outside of that board?

No, not the actual nastier parts such as the foolish things thread but in general the more banter-like nature that were allowed in the penguin board, with few off-topic warnings and the thread splits that did occur where generally done in a helpful manner. I'm sure you know what I mean.
And in the past couple of years, the only threads that were really getting posts were the foolish threads.  The banter can be done in posts in public without being off topic or spam.

No, what was happening in that case is that the veteran members thought that the regular people of the community did not have valid comments to make and as such kept to their little corner of the forums as opposed to contributing to the whole. 

How many army lists were posted in that board because they didn't want to get comments from Joe Nobody?  How many tactical discussions?

This is true, but so what? The grand idea that limiting the penguin board would free up posts for the rest of the community is quite clearly just a fanciful dream, as most of us penguins declared when it was happening. Instead people left the site completely and who have gained from that? Did it really hurt that some people almost exclusively posted in a hidden part of the forum when the other option would have been for them not to post at all on this site? I personally felt that the continued life of the penguin board made me want to be more active on the forum in general, not only on that board and I'm sure others felt the same.
People that weren't contributing to the community and were only posting in the penguins board left, who gained from that?  No one.  But who lost from that?  The community as a whole clearly didn't.  You were one of the few who felt that the penguins encouraged them to post else where.  Most of them kept themselves secluded, and the reason we made the decision to push you guys out of your dark little corner is because the vets were complaining about the lack of activity so we asked what to do about it.  Some of the more prolific posters were hiding in the dark, wouldn't it make sense to push them into the open to help contribute to the community?  And please remember that this time the community the community of the penguins, but the community of 40kOnline.

What drove most of these "veterans" away is that the staff came to the conclusion that the forum rules would be applied to the veterans board to the full extent.  What drove them away is that we told them that posts that can be placed in the public boards are required to be made in the public boards.  What drove them away is that we closed down their thread of rage against the community and said that those types of posts were not appropriate anywhere, regardless as to whether the general public can see the thread or not.

Again, is this a good thing? Yes, the murkier parts of that board probably needed to be removed but given the actual result was the intended purpose to get rid of all the penguin veterans?
Like I said, was it really a loss to lose people that were not posting outside of a hidden board?  No, losing them was not the idea.  but when the outcome (in my view) is that we either lose people that don't post in public, or convince them to post in public, all I see is the possibilities of gain.

But you are correct, most penguins do have posts in the 1000+ range.  But if people with 1000+ posts stop contributing to the public boards and only post in the secluded sections, then they aren't contributing, yet their post count keeps rising.  That is the point Irisado keeps trying to make.

As far as I am aware you do not in fact get post count for the off-topic boards so that point is moot (if I am correct). I would say that many penguins upon getting elivated actually upped their community participation or remained largely unchanged.
Ok you are right, I thought the post count increased in the penguins board but it doesn't.  So that one little part is moot, but the rest of the point is valid.  They would have over 1000 posts, and stay in the penguins board and their post count wouldn't increase in any substantial way aside from the random post outside of their comfort zone.
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Re: Over-moderation killing forum appeal?
« Reply #59 on: January 2, 2014, 01:29:06 PM »
It is not just this forum which has an activity problem, so the argument that you're making is based entirely on how you personally feel (which I won't take away from you, even though I disagree with you), and correlation.  Correlation is not causation.

Yet time and time again this issue is raised and people who leave do cite this as their issue. How is that not a problem?

If I take a look at blogs, the large ones are thriving.  There is lots of activity there.  I've also had anecdotal reports of more and more people using Facebook to discuss 40K, and Twitter is used for things like release notifications from GW and that sort of thing, so there's no need for people to come to a forum to get that sort of information either, and then they discuss it with their friends on Facebook not here.

Why is that do you think? I think one of the main reason is that the discussion is far more in the hands of the people discussing and not some arbitrary moderator but that might just be more of my correlation...

They lack desire, because they're getting what they need from other sources (see above), and so the cycle continues.  We need to offer things to entice newbies to the forum, and we're not doing that well in that regard at the moment.

Yes, but why do they choose other sources? Why do you think people like me and Killing Time have basically more or less left this place?

One additional thought is that moderation here was noticed a lot less in the past, because there was so much activity and discussion that it was quickly forgotten about in the majority of cases.  When it is necessary to moderate now it remains prominent for longer, owing to the fact that the same threads stay at the top of each board for much longer than they used to.

This is probably true and part of the problem. It still doesn't justify the moderation culture but it might explain its origins and what a detrimental effect it has had when the slowdown began.

People that weren't contributing to the community and were only posting in the penguins board left, who gained from that?  No one.  But who lost from that?  The community as a whole clearly didn't.  You were one of the few who felt that the penguins encouraged them to post else where.  Most of them kept themselves secluded, and the reason we made the decision to push you guys out of your dark little corner is because the vets were complaining about the lack of activity so we asked what to do about it.  Some of the more prolific posters were hiding in the dark, wouldn't it make sense to push them into the open to help contribute to the community?  And please remember that this time the community the community of the penguins, but the community of 40kOnline.

Yes but the end result hasn't been that these secluded penguins have stepped out of the shadow, it has been that they have left completely, which, like I said, doesn't really do anyone any good. Especially if you take into consideration that many of the penguins who were active has also left, Wyddr being one of the few ones still around from what I can see after a quick look through recent posts.

Like I said, was it really a loss to lose people that were not posting outside of a hidden board?  No, losing them was not the idea.  but when the outcome (in my view) is that we either lose people that don't post in public, or convince them to post in public, all I see is the possibilities of gain.

So them leaving was in other words worth it for the miniscule chance that some of them might start posting again? It sort of feels like you think cutting away the roots and leaf from a rose will make the actual flower grow bigger...

Ok you are right, I thought the post count increased in the penguins board but it doesn't.  So that one little part is moot, but the rest of the point is valid.  They would have over 1000 posts, and stay in the penguins board and their post count wouldn't increase in any substantial way aside from the random post outside of their comfort zone.

Which, again, is not what happened. Again, this feels a bit off-topic and probably quite unhelpful for the people not aware of the penguins board or the discussions that went on there. I think we both know where we stand on this issue, so perhaps we could keep it to discussing the impression of moderation on the forum as a whole?

 


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