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Moderation

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Lelanya, Jul 8, 2018.

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  1. Lelanya

    Lelanya Summoner

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2016
    Many players say things to me like, Wow, you post on the Forum? You're brave, it's full of sharks.
    Let's face it, we've all been there, just a little reactive to another's post for one reason or another. But this sort of thing snowballs, and then some players give up posting their impressions, while others make mortal enemies here.
    Three months back I embarked on a self-appointed mission to make this Forum a more friendly place to post. And I do see us being more respectful of others' positions; at least for those who are able to be influenced in this manner. It sure doesn't work for everyone!

    Lately some of us have strayed off topic. Our posts moved or edited as a result. How far off topic is relevant Folks?
    And since it is a source of tension:
    Can't we aĺl make our own threads for our point of view?
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2018
    Lisica and m4rt1n like this.
  2. Pauly7

    Pauly7 Illusionist

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2017
    I like the concept of a post about being off-topic.... that way it's impossible to be off-topic. :)

    I agree though. I think that there are so many short-comings as far as Inno not being nearly as involved in these forums as they should be. It then seems like they're just being plain difficult when they still want to control the content of our posts in that way.... when they aren't contributing themselves.
     
    Alcaro and Rinkidink like this.
  3. LadyHavva

    LadyHavva Sorcerer

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2018
    Moderators need to have some discretion on which posts they need to modify or delete and which they can leave to it's own devices. If a moderator judges that the discussion may go in the wrong direction and become a flaming match (I don't know what initiated this post so this is not a comment on that post) they might do something about it, but sometimes it's better to wait a little and see what will happen. After all if people would start new threads just so they can reply to someone on another thread just so they won't be off topic, things will get out of control rather fast. So some off-topic is in fact quite ok, makes for less threads and most of the time people return to the topic themselves or can remind each other to return to the topic. Modifying or deleting someones post just because it's off topic (even if the rules say so) is a little heavy handed in my opinion.
     
  4. m4rt1n

    m4rt1n Summoner

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2017
    It's a tough job to be a moderator on an international forum, I did it for almost 10 years on another game site, and at times it can be a very difficult balancing act between allowing some things to continue and not others.
    In my experience we had a section on the forum with post count switched off where off topic posts could be moved to and allowed to continue as "friendly" chatty discussions keeping the main game threads free and clear for the many users who just browse for info and to encourage them to post.
    I do think that the staff here do a good job and remember they are unpaid volunteers like I was on another game site and take a lot of flack sometimes so I do say thank you to them for keeping the forum running, as without them, no doubt the forum would close as it has done on other sites I visit.
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2018
  5. Pauly7

    Pauly7 Illusionist

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2017
    To clarify, it is not my intention to be critical of any moderators. My criticism lies with Inno's lack of real involvement.
     
  6. Lelanya

    Lelanya Summoner

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2016
    Great thoughts everyone. My deepest apologies tho as I needed to alter my original post due to a hasty intro.
     
    m4rt1n likes this.
  7. Ikarium

    Ikarium Bard

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2017
    a forum is just like any other form of human interaction. it is impossible to be 100% organized and "clean" and if that is somehow achieved, the forum would look somewhat sterile and not as a place to discuss , but rather place to give unchallenged statements. each of us is entitled of their own opinion on the level of moderation but i'd let some discussions go further and move and sort things out a bit less. however i'm content with how it's done for the moment.

    as for people being prone to argue, or being harsh to others, that's human nature. some can moderate themselves, other can't. as far as i see, most of the people here manage themselves good and for that i'm grateful.
     
    Alcaro and Lelanya like this.
  8. Timneh

    Timneh Necromancer

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2016
    I have noticed that lately the mods have been jumping on any comments that are even slightly off topic and i think that is going overboard. Mods don't really need to take action unless the whole thread starts to go down a different route but if it is just a few comments then it's no big deal. I don't know if the mods have taken this new firmer stance on their own or if it is under instruction from Inno but in my opinion they need to back off a bit and give people a bit of slack. In the past i have seen posts that later got removed for being off topic but those posts were very relevant to the conversation. This is one of those situations where common sense needs to be applied.
     
    Alcaro, Lisica, EdwardTrunk and 3 others like this.
  9. DomiTheElf

    DomiTheElf Dreamer

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2017
    I have to say this forum is a dream compared to other game site forums and the dictatorial MODs. I have had posts edited due to language, content and other things (these I don't know, you can only find out if you ask). The MODs also do this with no warning or anything to the party who may have made the error and no explanation even if asked. This site has two separate sections for questions. General questions and technical questions, no hijacking of threads, if you have the exact same problem start another thread. They have also closed entire threads for no reason other than their whim.

    The language issue was hysterical. I am American, the MOD was British, I had written a reply using a word which in America has no slang good or bad connotations. In England it does, supposedly bad, so my post wasn't modified just completely deleted for just ONE word. On an unofficial fan site I wrote the post and asked what the problem was, some from England explained and I explained it from my POV, but they should not have deleted my whole post, that was high handed to say the least. I do not believe they would do that here.

    This forum is a dream. I don't see people leaving this forum due to the heavy handedness of the MODs. Honestly, this site has too few MODs for how big it is.
     
  10. Pauly7

    Pauly7 Illusionist

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2017
    Well now I'm wondering what the word was.
     
    DomiTheElf likes this.
  11. Dizzy Lizzie

    Dizzy Lizzie Co-Community Manager Elvenar Team

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2017
    Thank you for your contributions to this thread about Moderation!

    I've been a member of this Forum Team for almost 18 months now as have other moderators. In that time, we have implemented regular forum competitions, reduced the number of rule infringements and the Forum has become a much more friendly and helpful place. However that doesn't mean that the Forum Team has become complacent and yes, we will pick up on off-topic posts as, in our experience, leaving them in place often leads to a thread being derailed. As to whether a post is or isn't off-topic is, of course, subjective and in many instances we seek the opinions of others in the Forum Team before taking action.

    That does leave us with a couple of questions, though, so let's attempt to answer these!

    Q: Why does it matter if I post off-topic?
    • To give everyone a good chance to follow the forums, we attempt to keep it organised. Do consider that we have people from many nationalities on the International forums, and that not everyone speaks English natively. Having an organised forum helps people from all around the globe to come together and be present in the lovely community that we all have built here at Elvenar International over the years! As an example of that: often I try and find a useful comment I have read previously on a thread, but if it's posted 'off-topic' it is near impossible to find.
    • Someone starts a thread for a particular reason e.g. to find a Fellowship, to discuss a topic; but if the discussion strays away then their original intention might not be achieved.
    • It is also difficult to read the thread from first post to the last as there might be so much information which needs to be disregarded if the thread is full of off-topic posts and comments.
    Q: What action is taken when off-topic comments are posted?

    Part of a moderator's duties is acting when forum rules are not followed. Of course, that has to be done in (excuse the pun) moderation. So, as a moderator, when an off-topic post has been created, I have a choice:
    • Ignore it
    • Move it to a more relevant, pre-existing thread
    • Start a new thread to house the off-topic comments as it appears to be a current hot topic
    • Delete part of a post to bring the thread back on topic
    • Delete the whole post
    • Post on the thread to steer the topic back on-topic
    A combination of the above is used to keep the Forum on-topic. We always try to avoid deleting content, especially if it doesn't break any other rules than being off-topic in a specific thread. We'd rather move things to a separate thread or a more relevant thread, instead of deleting the content altogether, because we do appreciate the value of each post that's made by everyone.

    Forum moderation is indeed all about finding that perfect balance, and that can be tricky. Especially so because it's a very subjective trade, and each person's perception of something differs. If anyone has any questions about any actions taken by the moderation team, please do always feel free to contact any of the forum moderators: we're happy to give further context about any actions taken.

    Thank you to those of you who recognise the contribution of the volunteers to the Forum Team. It is good to be appreciated from time to time.

    Here's to the next 18 months of growth in the Forum!
     
  12. Timneh

    Timneh Necromancer

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2016
    While i understand what you are saying Lizzie i also want to point out that in the past, posts have been removed that were not completely off topic and were very relevant to the conversation that was being had. I hasten to add that you were not the mod that did this and the person who did do it is no longer a part of the Elvenar team. I have found that in moderating forums (yes i have moderated on a massive forum) and in real life that sticking to the letter of the rules is not always the best thing to do. Like i said earlier common sense needs to be used or there is a danger of resentment being caused towards the mods.
     
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  13. DomiTheElf

    DomiTheElf Dreamer

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2017
    That resentment caused many people to leave a forum for an unofficial fan site.

    I honestly don't remember, but it is very mild slang for prostitute and only in England not in the US. It is nowhere near as bad as OOPS! or OOOPS!, closer to the latter especially if using it to describe a female dog. ;)
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 10, 2018
  14. Dizzy Lizzie

    Dizzy Lizzie Co-Community Manager Elvenar Team

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2017
    I totally agree with you there. Moderation in moderation! :p My thought for the day
     
  15. Ikarium

    Ikarium Bard

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2017
    well, Lizzie, that's all fine really. But than again, different people, different points of view, different way to express those. What the team may view as an offtopic , sometimes is actually not, if you look at it from a bigger perspective. In my view, it is more than ok to let people discuss things in the 'New version release" threads for an example, even if the discussion itself is not specifically on a change that is to be implemented with that exact release. Because certain threads generate publicity - more people are reading such threads than any other.

    By your point of view, in the thread about the upcoming version there should not be posts about the restoration spell, because it is not listed in the changes being made to the game with this update. However, the thread about this specific spell has little to no effect anymore, attracts little to no attention both from players and staff. And if we follow the rule by the book, and keep the discussion for that spell in it's assigned thread only, the spell will end up forgotten and never released. May be that's what INNO would love to get as a result, but we, players, do not let things end this way.

    I'm not trying to teach you how to do your job - I'm only trying to point out that sometimes offtopics may be intended and the reasoning is far from breaking the rules, or loosing the focus. Sometimes it is because INNO is loosing the focus. And the best solution for such offtopics is not to move them or delete them, but to leave them be, especially if they do not complitely derail the thread.
     
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  16. Dizzy Lizzie

    Dizzy Lizzie Co-Community Manager Elvenar Team

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2017
    I see your point and I totally agree- that is why one of actions I listed was 'ignore it'. Looking at the thread you mentioned I see people asking questions of the CM, which yes is off-topic but then again, is what they want an answer about.

    I could spend all day teasing out the off-topic bits of many posts but instead I went to the supermarket to get something for my tea!

    mushroom and lentil spaghetti
     
  17. Ikarium

    Ikarium Bard

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2017
    haha, that supermarket visit you mention makes me think of oftopics as cholesterol. there's a good and a bad one. My current oftopic is of the worst type - it is on topic because it is about offtopics, but in the same time it isn't really on topic, because it doesn't contributes to the discussion. ;)
     
  18. Muf-Muf

    Muf-Muf Elvenar Team

    Joined:
    May 27, 2015
    Moderation in moderation indeed. In the end, most important from our side is hosting a pleasant forum environment for all. Being too strict in applying the rules is definitely not the best approach to that: it's simply not how forums and forum communities work, especially here at Elvenar. :)
     
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  19. Kaliartis

    Kaliartis Conjurer

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2017
    Well I have to say that I didn't know about the rule about animated images...I thought that since it was technically possible to post an animated gif, it should be allowed... I understand that moderators had to strictly follow this rule and remove it, although I was really disappointed as it was innocent, wasn't hurting or upsetting anyone I believe (a monkey clicking like crazy) and on point with the discussion...
     
  20. Lelanya

    Lelanya Summoner

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2016
    I guess we are all being hit with this. I just reviewed the rules myself as I had a bit of a palaver over what appeared to be criticism on another post I made
     
    Kaliartis likes this.

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