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Postby juanicoheal » Thu Mar 25, 2004 12:38 am

I was refering to the blatant name calling, and direct attack as violating the TOS, and most of the time it's dealt with pretty darn quick by the community.

And I can't proofread werth shit....... even when I try.
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Postby precipitate » Thu Mar 25, 2004 12:43 am

So this brings up an interesting question (one which probably should not be
asked) in regards to moderation.

Moderators need to be above criticism, to a certain degree. They must be
perceived to be impartial, regardless of their personal preferences.

Is it possible that Badger, or I, could be effective moderaters were it done
with another login? Is it possible that such personas could attain enough
credibility to guide the eplaya community?

I ask because the personalities that now have both enough time on the
boards and enough impartiality are limited to technopatra. And I know
she doesn't have enough time to do the job.

So how do you handle it?

I'll cross-post in suggestions.
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Postby III » Thu Mar 25, 2004 1:56 am

>>Limiting the dictionary is a violation of the FIRST amendment to your constitution, and therefore the laws of California which in turn dictate the operation of this board.


that's a joke, right?

(and am i drifting too much?)
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Postby DVD Burner » Thu Mar 25, 2004 2:08 am

So would "you are one wanna be aristocrat of the worst kind" qualify as Pedantic name calling and flaming? :?
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Postby technopatra » Thu Mar 25, 2004 2:12 am

Precip is correct in that I can not devote as much time as I would like to adminning these boards. I have a day job that eats a lot of my screen time, and sometimes I just don't even want to look at my computer when I come home from work. There are just too many conversations, and to be honest, it's diffuclt to remember to pay attention to the ones that do not personally interest.

More to the point, tho, I don't think the boards should have a single voice of authority. This is not my personal domain and I do not want anyone to view it as such. I would like there to be other trusted impartial voices contributing to the stewardship of this community.

We recently had a discussion at Burning Man HQ about the success & failures of running a team by a counsel rather than having one leader. The pros far outweigh the cons, and some of the pros - like the fact that diversity breeds greater understanding among people, that it's more enriching and engaging to be a participant than a superior or subordinate, and the outstanding opportunity to prove that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts is ever present - are so integral to this community that they have made their way into our governance. The fact that our philosophies actually guide us at this team management level is something that makes me proud to be a part of the Project.

In the spirit of sharing the governance, here are some observations I've made about being an admin that I think will apply to the experience of being a moderator, as well. These are not rules written in stone, but rather some things that have affected my approach and I feel are worth considering.

1 - Your personal opinion on a particular topic is not relevant, and in fact, is counter-productive to your job as a mediating presence.

2 - Swallowing said opinion can take practice and many deep breaths.

3 - Never, ever, ever, ever post your first response to any issue. give yourself the leeway to write a rant and get any emotion out of your system - then DO NOT POST IT. Toss it and start another one. This is a good approach even when you think you are being cool right off the bat. (I kind of wish more people would do this all the time)

4 - Most people are receptive to constructive feedback about their behavior. It is always worth approaching someone to see where they are at before making any judgement - internally or externally. If they are not receptive, well, just so long as they're not breakin' any rules, leave them and their attitude alone. The community is smart and sensitive enough to support who they want.

5 - Be aware of your effect on a conversation. As a person of authority, people to take your words with a certain amount of weight, and you have to be conscious that you are not blithely throwing that weight around. What may seem like mild statements to you can come across as final words, which kills conversation. Sometimes not contributing to a conversation is the best thing you can do to keep it alive.
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Postby DVD Burner » Thu Mar 25, 2004 2:19 am

damn Ms. T you're quick. I just got through the other threads before I got to this one and you already have written a book.

touche'
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Postby Badger » Thu Mar 25, 2004 11:29 am

Referring back to The WELL here in the bay area. One of the ways that they moderate is for a particular person - usually one who shows themselves invested in the topic (and board) - to adopt a particulat area/topic/grouping. Any complaints about the moderator's style can then be pushed up the pole to the admin where the complaints are evaluated. Still, the role requires a thick skin.

Just an idea.
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Postby Chai Guy » Thu Mar 25, 2004 12:00 pm

For me anyway, I'm not so much concerned about the ocassional flame war or thinned skinned yahoo getting bent out of shape as I am about things like crossposting, posting in inappropriate areas (i.e. posting a question about shade structures in "Newbie Information" rather than in "Structures").

I would like to see more management of threads, moving threads and consolidation of threads that would make using this board as resource more effective.

Going right along with that idea, I'm finding that some of the threads are being deleted or "auto pruned", thus requiring new threads on topics that have already been covered in great detail (i.e. teenagers at Burning Man).
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what she said... and he said!

Postby emily sparkle » Thu Mar 25, 2004 4:43 pm

mz. technopatra wrote:
Precip is correct in that I can not devote as much time as I would like to adminning these boards. I have a day job that eats a lot of my screen time, and sometimes I just don't even want to look at my computer when I come home from work. There are just too many conversations, and to be honest, it's diffuclt to remember to pay attention to the ones that do not personally interest.


wow, i only get a few moments a week to spend reading the eplaya -- and today i chose this thread. how apropos.... for me, it's a combo of all the things above and the fact that my house only has one computer and it's no where near my couch! i love my little job though. technopatra's time puts me to shame!

of course, i didn't have time to read the *whole* thread... which brings me to chai's comment:

I would like to see more management of threads, moving threads and consolidation of threads that would make using this board as resource more effective.

Going right along with that idea, I'm finding that some of the threads are being deleted or "auto pruned", thus requiring new threads on topics that have already been covered in great detail (i.e. teenagers at Burning Man.


this could be a full time job for at least one person. what a blast it would be, how connected you would feel to the community! :)

[/quote]
:) emily sparkle
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Postby Guest » Thu Mar 25, 2004 5:00 pm

Due to Precipitate's mean spirited attitude toward newbies, she needs to disqualify herself from being a moderator on the eplaya.
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Postby Chai Guy » Thu Mar 25, 2004 5:00 pm

this could be a full time job for at least one person. what a blast it would be, how connected you would feel to the community!


I wouldn't envision it taking up too much time, I would gladly volunteer to help consolidate threads, and move things into their proper place.

I guess my main concern is this, I've been on these message boards when they were just a single thread. Since then I've seem them wiped out several times. My hope would be that we could retain this information so that we wouldn't have to start from scratch every few years. (in re: to autopruning)
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Postby Ivy » Thu Mar 25, 2004 5:54 pm

Due to Precipitate's mean spirited attitude toward newbies, she needs to disqualify herself from being a moderator on the eplaya.


She's not a moderator and never was. Problem solved.
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Postby III » Thu Mar 25, 2004 6:32 pm

>>I've been on these message boards when they were just a single thread.

drift: cool - someone who predates me & robthewop. what handle did you post under back when? (i think we joined up when it was 4 threads, and no registration)
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Postby Tancorix » Thu Mar 25, 2004 6:52 pm

There are no moderators. It's just two main admins, and maybe Spanky once in a while if I remember right.

In any event, despite all the gripes the board imho is working well enough that it doesn't need moderators. Maybe a little thread realignment but otherwise, let it go.
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Postby Chai Guy » Thu Mar 25, 2004 7:50 pm

cool - someone who predates me & robthewop. what handle did you post under back when?


This was back in 97-98 and I was more of a reader than a poster back then. I posted under the names Da' Mayor, and later E.D. but I doubt anyone would remember because I very rarely posted.
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Postby Badger » Thu Mar 25, 2004 8:29 pm

I think I was posting back in 95-96 but not sure what my pseud was. May have been Raemo.

Posting to the BM thread on The WELL even before that.

Them's was the days. Certainly no ALLANON3 pinheads to have to deal with.
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back on topic:

Postby technopatra » Fri Mar 26, 2004 1:56 am

Badger- yes! The WELL model is a great example of how this could work. Thank you for tying together a couple of heretofore untethered ideas. And for reminding me what a greenhorn I am.

Chai Guy- I want to thank you for bringing the issue of thread management to the foreground. My head's been deep in community management, with this idea that when I finally finish the new (significantly smaller) folder structure we could concentrate on moving the threads around. But we should definitely be throwing energy at it now and getting someone (some people?) in place. I'd love to have your help. Let's discuss more via email.

I thought we nailed the default auto-pruning down, but apparently not. I will look into it and report back on that in the Bugs folder.

Allanon03 - I don't know whether that was an offhand comment about Precipitate or the posing of a legitimate concern, but it came across as personal and petty. If you wish to raise a legitimate concern about this, please contact me privately (as others have done) and I'll be happy to discuss it with you.

Everyone - the feedback section is very much my workplace, and I while I can handle a little drift I have a very, very low threshold for intentional snarkiness here. I will exercise more control here than elsewhere as I have neither time nor patience for dealing with personal bs in these threads.

Don't make me get all Bill Bixby on you. Green isn't my color.

Tancorix - I agree that the board works pretty well, but there is definitely enough work to warrant a couple of moderators. As Emily says, thread management will require addiitonal hands - she & I simply don't have the time to do it ourselves, which is why we are still having the issues that CG pointed out.
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Postby Badger » Fri Mar 26, 2004 2:03 am

Allanon03 - I don't know whether that was an offhand comment about Precipitate or the posing of a legitimate concern, but it came across as personal and petty. If you wish to raise a legitimate concern about this, please contact me privately (as others have done) and I'll be happy to discuss it with you.


Very diplomatic Technopatra. Given his attempts at vindictive shit stirring coupled with the cardinal infraction of posting out of context from a different board, I'm doubting he'll ever consider your suggestion.

Again, I'd submit that he's a terribly good example of why the mothers of some animals eat their young.
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ok REALLY back on topic

Postby technopatra » Fri Mar 26, 2004 2:25 am

CASE STUDY # (what are we up to?) - In Progress

OK here's one that falls smack dab into the middle of a grey area. I've not yet acted and would like to run it by you guys to see what you think.

Someone re-posts a long snippet from the another board, presumably without the permission of the participants of that conversation and apparently with the intent to try to humiliate those participants.

Is it reported to me. It does appear to violate the TOS and Guidelines, however the people who are quoted in the snippet are also part of the eplaya thread, and they continue with the conversation without any ruckus. Owner of the other board is not happy, but believes in the self-governance of the other board by its members, and decides to leave it to the community to light their own torches.

Options:
1) "no harm, no foul". No one directly involved is complaining, so why worry?

2) Speak to the spirit of the guidelines. Give the poster a knuckle-rapping but leave the post as is unless the poster feels duly chastized and asks for it to be deleted.

3) Go with the letter of the law. It's a violation so delete the post (since the conversation is still bascially healthy it would be wrong to freeze it), contact the poster, and give them the warning that if they do it again their posting privileges will be suspended.

OK so option 1 is easiest, but I worry about setting a precedent of arbitrariness. Same issue for Option 2, plus it wold only feel satisfying itf the poster really understand that it wasn't cool, which is a gamble. Option 3 seems clear and justified, but feels heavy-handed given the fact that no one seems overly concerned. Even the original complaint-giver merely pointed out the infraction, with no apparent investment in the outcome.

Anyone have thoughts? Other options?
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Postby technopatra » Fri Mar 26, 2004 2:28 am

Badger wrote:Again, I'd submit that he's a terribly good example of why the mothers of some animals eat their young.


Badger...I repeat:

"Don't make me get all Bill Bixby on you. Green isn't my color."

Seriously, cut it out.
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Re: posting across forums and out of context

Postby Zephryus » Fri Mar 26, 2004 2:46 am

If it isn't causing too much of a fuss, I'd ask the person whose words have been unduly plagiarized how they feel about the situation. If the crossposting upsets them, delete it. If not, then leave it but also post a response stating in specific terms that the offending post is Not Cool. Let it serve as an example. Also, let the poster know in specific terms that malicious crossposting is Not Cool. And then drop it unless/until it becomes an issue again.
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Postby III » Fri Mar 26, 2004 9:10 am

>>leave it but also post a response stating in specific terms that the offending post is Not Cool

good answer.

at this point, the behavior's been repeated, so it's pretty clear that he didn't figure out how to behave properly on his own. it seems that giving a warning, and then using post deletion on future occurances (along with other potentially stricter measures) may be appropriate.
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Postby III » Fri Mar 26, 2004 9:18 am

oh, and i'd suggest that, since his efforts were obviously intended to be incendiary, any complaints about responses to his behavior be taken with a grain of salt.

(did the whole "evaluated in context" section actually ever make it into the guidelines?)
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Re: ok REALLY back on topic

Postby Guest » Fri Mar 26, 2004 10:16 am

technopatra wrote:2) Speak to the spirit of the guidelines. Give the poster a knuckle-rapping but leave the post as is unless the poster feels duly chastized and asks for it to be deleted.

3) Go with the letter of the law. It's a violation so delete the post (since the conversation is still bascially healthy it would be wrong to freeze it), contact the poster, and give them the warning that if they do it again their posting privileges will be suspended.

OK so option 1 is easiest, but I worry about setting a precedent of arbitrariness. Same issue for Option 2, plus it wold only feel satisfying itf the poster really understand that it wasn't cool, which is a gamble. Option 3 seems clear and justified, but feels heavy-handed given the fact that no one seems overly concerned. Even the original complaint-giver merely pointed out the infraction, with no apparent investment in the outcome.

Anyone have thoughts? Other options?


thoughts:

(2) plus a subset of (3). (2), because the action does seem to violate the intent of the ToS, as well as caused unproductive chaos. and all of (3) excepting the "delete the post" bit, unless someone whose words were misappropriated requests the post to be pulled. if that occurs, then (3), as written would be indicated if the ToS are to have any teeth.

jmo.
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Postby Guest » Fri Mar 26, 2004 1:01 pm

pull the posts just dont make precipitate moderator she doesnt treat newbies fairly and badger uses a sock why should he moderate?

dont site tos and rules on me when nobody follows them unless it serves there purposes
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Postby III » Fri Mar 26, 2004 3:38 pm

heh.

you think people actually are going to listen to your opinion, at this point?
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Postby precipitate » Fri Mar 26, 2004 8:14 pm

I'm mean to idiots, be they new or old. Deal with it.

And just for the record, my fine foot-stinking friend, I never asked to be a
moderator, nor do I wish to be one.

I do believe moderation is needed. My comments of Wednesday were
intended to spark thought in the minds of Technopatra et alia about how
to go about choosing moderators.

And finally, let me reiterate something that was said back in September
and bears repeating. Moderation, in my opinion, should be mostly
restricted to keeping on-topic areas on-topic and controlling obviously
incendiary behavior when it gets out of control.
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Postby DVD Burner » Fri Mar 26, 2004 8:17 pm

P. you seem like moderator material.

A control freak.

:lol:
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Postby precipitate » Fri Mar 26, 2004 8:28 pm

In regards to the case study at hand, if it were me I'd probably go with a
combination of 2 and 3.

Since the post in question was intended as a personal attack, I'd be
inclined to say do it again and your privileges are suspended.

But because no one personally involved complained (neither I nor the
board owner felt so inclined), a response such as, "That was a complete
breach of etiquette, and a violation of the letter of the TOS and CG, so
please don't do it again," would also probably be sufficient.
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Postby DVD Burner » Fri Mar 26, 2004 8:32 pm

there was no attack intended.

it's the truth. you think you're smarter than everyone and everyone is an idiot. If things don't go your way you have a hissy fit. not an attack....just the truth. since day one since i've been on this board you've been that way.

the board should work and run this way and that. blah blah blah.

a control freak. :lol:

what's wrong with facing up to the truth. some people are and like being in control. hey, nothing wrong with that right?
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