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 The "player" update to Banter
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Zefrieus
 Friday, April 18 2014 @ 09:35 PM UTC  
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I definitely understand the idea behind this, and wanting to cut down on all the glomping and snorgling in Banter. However, I really don't think that adding the word "player" will be effective. (Especially since it's hoped that everyone will soon ignore and not even see that word.) I mean, won't everyone's players will just start glomping, instead?

Personally, I don't see how "So-and-so's player twirls her cape and leaves Banter" is any more/less goofy than "So-and-so twirls her cape and leaves Banter". They're both goofy -- the former is just longer. (Besides, people do that stuff because they like that it's goofy. So, even if one was goofier, would that stop anyone?)

So that I don't criticize without suggesting an alternative: what if, rather than a very inelegant word on every single line, we had a bright blue disclaimer by each channel? It could be right below where you make your posts. Something short and sweet, like, "Remember: Banter is where you talk as though you're an actual human being sitting at a computer. No pretend stuff here.". And maybe even another one for Story: "Story is where you roleplay. Check the FAQ, and then, have at!"


 
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Count Sessine
 Saturday, April 19 2014 @ 12:20 AM UTC  
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Quote by: Zefrieus

I definitely understand the idea behind this, and wanting to cut down on all the glomping and snorgling in Banter. However, I really don't think that adding the word "player" will be effective. (Especially since it's hoped that everyone will soon ignore and not even see that word.) I mean, won't everyone's players will just start glomping, instead?

Personally, I don't see how "So-and-so's player twirls her cape and leaves Banter" is any more/less goofy than "So-and-so twirls her cape and leaves Banter". They're both goofy -- the former is just longer. (Besides, people do that stuff because they like that it's goofy. So, even if one was goofier, would that stop anyone?)

So that I don't criticize without suggesting an alternative: what if, rather than a very inelegant word on every single line, we had a bright blue disclaimer by each channel? It could be right below where you make your posts. Something short and sweet, like, "Remember: Banter is where you talk as though you're an actual human being sitting at a computer. No pretend stuff here.". And maybe even another one for Story: "Story is where you roleplay. Check the FAQ, and then, have at!"


Perhaps that's something to look at next, if the constant reminder in each line doesn't work. We'll give it some time, and see what the effect is. (If someone is willfully ignoring it, though, they'd surely be ignoring a bright blue notice, too.)

The purpose is NOT to stop people from being goofy in Banter. Actual human beings sitting at a computer can be wonderfully silly! That's delightful. We certainly don't want to discourage humor. Or cape-twirling! The expectation is only that people will draw the line for what they won't do, at what they wouldn't do speaking as themselves in front of other people they wanted to like the Island.

Feel free to raise an eyebrow at a player who seems to have forgotten. "Would you do that? Really?"


 
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Temper
 Saturday, April 19 2014 @ 03:11 AM UTC  
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Sometimes I wish we could get rid of emotes altogether for Banter. Just keep it plain ol' "So and so says."


Would that really be so bad?


 
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Thomas_III
 Saturday, April 19 2014 @ 03:18 AM UTC  
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Quote by: Temper

Sometimes I wish we could get rid of emotes altogether for Banter. Just keep it plain ol' "So and so says."


Would that really be so bad?

I suggested that as part of my post on the previous page. Let Global be just talking. That's why I suggested a sort of "Global-lite" that would connect Places that opt in, but wouldn't connect to outposts.


 
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Harris
 Saturday, April 19 2014 @ 04:23 PM UTC  
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I more dislike having Banter as a feature than I like it to begin with; not because I don't want to talk to people, no- I wouldn't be playing a text-based rpg if I didn't want to talk, but because it seemed like it was easier for people to get into playing the game itself when there wasn't a casual conversation going on right alongside it `ithe entire time`i. Using only Distractions and Location Four always flet more intimate, and I daresay much easier to not feel like you (in the "plural-all-of-us-you-and-me-included" sense) need to show off, or only write `iwell`i, or whatever when you knew it was only one other person or only a small group of spectators (Location Four).

It's also problematic as a way for us to form any interpersonal connections, communicate clear ideas, etc, because (with or without Auto-update enabled) it is a feed of conversation from `idozens`i of people all in that one space. Ever had a conversation with twelve people at once? Twenty-four? Forty-eight? You either have to ignore most people, and still only speak to a few, or simply decide to just give in to being distracted and unfocused the entire time.

I do thank you Dan, for doing your damndest to give us another way to become a close community, I really do (and Banter's still frequently nice to have around so that we can exchange ideas quickly, don't get me wrong!), but with the setup we've got, I am unsurprised that it's become necessary to plaster "BEHAVE, BEHAVE, BEHAVE" all over it not because most people don't give a shit (because I agree with you, Dan, in all of your MotDs where you've said that most of us DO care about the game and each other. Seen it too often to doubt.) ...but that this need has arisen because people want to participate in it, and that the feature the Banter Channel itself is so damnably unfocused as a method of communicating.

I am heartily in favor of keeping a general, sitewide live communication, but yeah. Also in favor of revising it. I like the "....'s player" change.


"Ain't nothin' left to do but smile, smile, smile." -The Grateful Dead
 
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Tahvohck
 Wednesday, April 23 2014 @ 09:46 PM UTC  
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I've had mixed thoughts on this--originally negative, then positive as I read this thread--and people have made a lot of good points, brought up things I both agree and disagree with, but I've refrained from adding anything or saying so because I can't organize my feelings on the subject, nor do I really spend the time in banter to be relevant to it.

However, I realized something this morning while I was in it, and it surprised me: when actually reading my posts I felt... distanced from them? I can't put it into words very well, especially not this distanced from the incident as I am, but it's something like this: In story, my posts are Tahvohck. Tahvohck is acting out the script I give him, or, in my case, I'm acting out the role of Tahvohck with a given script. In Banter, I am myself. A refined and filtered version of myself, true, but still myself. That is, my posts are me, using the handle Tahvohck. But now, with the update? It's not me. It's Tahvohck's player. And while I may get used to it over time... I don't think I will. I recognize this feeling, it's me forcibly disconnecting myself from the character I'm writing. Now there's Tahvohck in story, and Tahvohck's player, but I, me, the person behind the screen, doesn't feel a presence anywhere.

I'm rambling now... I have a tendency to do that when I can't put things into words. But I think it's worth noting that an update intended to remind people that there are, y'know people that you're talking to has made at least one person feel the opposite way, like the posts in Banter are just shells acting out an OOC script instead of an IC one.

Bah. That sounded better in my head.


 
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Dorien
 Monday, April 28 2014 @ 07:52 PM UTC  
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Well, after the bit of a pot stirring I accidentally generated in Banter this morning I felt I should weigh in on the subject in the appropriate forum, so here goes.

I think I'm starting to get a grasp on more of the "spirit" behind the change, but it still appears to me that not all players are even on the same page about the "Why." I don't know whether this is because they haven't all read the relevant News of the Days, posts by mods etc., or whether it's because people are finding them unclear even after reading. Knowing as much about the reasoning behind and purpose of a change as possible helps people make educated decisions around whether or not the change is a "good" one as relates to its purpose. In my mind that equates to how efficient it is (minimal drawbacks?) and how effective (Accomplishes goal?). Any other values used to assess a change would be largely subjective, so I won't really get into those. Rather than "I like it" or "I don't like it" I'll stick with "This change is a good way to accomplish X" or "This is not effective at accomplishing X because" and of course "A better way to accomplish X would be".

First, some clarity. My understanding of the "problem(s)" attempting to be addressed based on what I've read is:

1. Banter is often being used inappropriately as relates to "Out of Character" interactions. "In Character" interactions are intended to take place strictly in the story channel.
2. Banter is often being used inappropriately as relates to content - emotes and posts that are too graphic, vulgar, in poor taste or otherwise that might create a bad impression /cause discomfort for (new) players.

Additionally, my understanding of what the change is not intended to address, based on what I've read:

Out of character roleplaying/emotes.

I feel that's worth mentioning as it's easy to conflate. Removing emotes from Global Banter would definitely be a more direct/efficient way to address this (regardless of effectiveness), but it's my understanding that this is not at issue.

So my own assessment (opinion yes, but as objective as I can get I think!) of the change based on those two goals is as follows:

Drawbacks - Minimal/none. A displaced feeling of self has been mentioned. It adds a bit of digital "clutter". All mostly personal preference things.

Goal #1. - Minimally effective. It functions as a reminder, but I feel this reminder gets clouded quickly based on the regular (non-problematic) use of banter. This was the basis of my discussion in banter this morning. Yes, I understand that when someone says "Hi Dorien" or "Hi Sessine" in banter, they are talking to the player. But if our target audience is people who need some clarity around in and out of character. Having "Dorien" or any other character name appear in conversation almost as much as "Dorien's player" throws a lot of the clarity right out the window. It very quickly sends mixed messages (Usually as soon as a character's player enters banter and is greeted by friends/acquaintances).
I think there are better options to address this part of the problem such as Zefrieus "Big blue disclaimer" suggestion. I agree that players willfully ignoring such reminders would ignore both equally, but I believe players who could benefit from a reminder would benefit more from a clearer one separate from the channel content itself.

Goal #2. - Moderately effective - I think this is a reasonable addition to the existing arsenal of community self-policing, moderator intervention, and Rules/FAQ type static enforcement against offensive behavior. I believe that this change could indeed help people avoid a slippery-slope of some behaviors by making clear that it will be one's player - not one's character - posting whatever it is they are about to post.

Overall assessment - On a scale of "Sky-falling hand-waving, ruined-game-forever-ranting terrible" to "FOR THIS GAME I WILL GIVE YOU ALL OF MY DOLLARS" I rate this change firmly in "Worth a shot for now?" I think if other ways can be found to address Goal #2, there are already better ways to address Goal #1. Thank you, to those who took the time to read.

Dorien's player drops the internet and walks off-stage.


 
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