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 Moderators, Fear and other Subjects.
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Waverly
 Tuesday, December 23 2014 @ 08:32 AM UTC  
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So, there's this old gdoc I started many moons (read: years) ago that was brought to mind reading this thread, Verbum Scriptum. Ahh, that name sucks so much in hindsight. Anyways. It made me think, since "Vet Fear" was brought up which can be quite similar to Mod Fear. (why does 'fear' suddenly not look like a proper word anymore go to bed Waverly)



Reading over it again, and reading this thread... maybe a revamp of Location Four is in order? Or a dwelling to serve the same function? Someplace where you can put up a call for interested writers, like an "Ongoing Plots" version of the Noticeboard, ask a Mod a general question, have a "Mod on Duty" list, chat, just... have somewhere that's not as fast and intimidating as Banter with a more focused purpose. We always tell new players to ask questions in Banter, but maybe a different venue would be welcome in diffusing some tension and connecting players who're too shy to Distract, feel awkward in the social atmosphere of Banter or have social anxiety issues (me included!). Personally, I miss Natter, it felt much more friendly and I would get such lovely and funny messages on it. Maybe we could bring that feel back a little.


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Lea.wolfsfeld
 Tuesday, December 23 2014 @ 11:35 AM UTC  
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maybe a revamp of Location Four is in order?

This. I've always thought this. It's so easy to miss Location Four and I didn't really know what it was until I looked in. I think it should be somewhere accessible from anywhere in the game. Maybe a link under Help? Need more help and you don't see it in the FAQ? Ask Here! This kind of thing. Banter is really really too fast for people who are not used to it. And most people in general at times.

Also, perhaps Mods should have access to a certain type of posting command? Something to make the posts stand out if they do have to address something in banter. A way to flag it to say "This is important! Look at this post real quick!" It could also be a way for a mod to catch everyone's attention in banter if they need to. Also perhaps a whispered post that can be aimed at a particular person? This could be a quick way of grabbing a person's attention without calling them out in banter without having to rely on distractions that can be easily missed. This can also help the mods not look so scary if they do need to be stern with just one person in particular.


 
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Waverly
 Wednesday, December 31 2014 @ 12:37 AM UTC  
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I find it more than a bit ironic that something that transpired a few days ago was started by a doc about mod fear. I'm experiencing it right now in a way that I haven't before.

Earlier I posted a link to Verbum Scriptum, a gdoc that I myself started and allowed other people to edit in order to get their opinions. After I shared the link to that doc on this thread, one of the mods deleted the link to the doc from my post. The stated reason in a distraction sent to me was that people who posted on my doc had engaged in a "private conversation" and that I should not have posted it without their consent, seeing as how a few had signed paragraphs with their first names rather than characters' names, and that they themselves had felt uncomfortable seeing it, remembering that they had read it, even though they didn't remember if they had contributed.

That doc was shared freely between some 80-90 different Islanders at the time, many of whom didn't know me or each other. Not all of them added to the doc; many messaged me privately in chats and distractions I have saved; those, I didn't share. I could hardly call the posts on the doc itself a private conversation however, especially since it was my personal idea and I was asking for the Island at large's help or thoughts. At the time, those who signed with their names knew some dozens of people were going to see it.

It was more akin to a message board than anything. The only reason I began the conversation on a doc, rather than the forums, was because I knew there are many Islanders who don't post on the forum and I wanted to reach a wider audience.

However, that aside, I fully agree that things posted on the Enquirer are allowably in control of the mods. I don't have a problem with that even if I may disagree. They were within their rights to delete the link.

My problem is that, since an unknown number of people were apparently viewing my doc at the time, a mod went in, deleted the contents of the doc- how, I'm not sure, since I believed I had set it to 'no edit'; obviously I must not have, though- and recopied the doc to another one which they then made me the owner of. I wasn't told of this until after it was done.

They went into my personal google doc, not the property of CMJ or the mod in question, and felt it was within their rights to alter it without my prior consent to ensure nobody else even read it for a brief minute or two. They are essentially telling me I am Not Allowed to do what I wish with it. What if I refuse? Am I going to get muted, or banned? How was posting it on the Enquirer different than leaving it a "free to view" doc for literally years, when anyone could have potentially shared and viewed a 'private' conversation?

Since this is your site, CMJ, on a forum thread about fear concerning people you chose to be mods, let me say- I know the mod in question, and they are as sweet and friendly a person as you could wish to meet- but this was really not OK. All the mods on this thread are saying "We're nice people! Don't be cautious of us!"

Well, I'm feeling pretty damn cautious now, and shocked, hurt and angry.

So my question is, what happens when a mod breaks Rule #1?



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Matthew
 Wednesday, December 31 2014 @ 01:08 AM UTC  
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Quote by: Waverly

my personal google doc, not the property of CMJ or the mod in question, and felt it was within their rights to alter it without my prior consent



This, right here. This is what upsets me. The person in question is not a Google Docs moderator. It's vandalizing somebody's personal property. It's not okay. Over the line, as a moderator and friend.

mod fear, lol


 
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Anonymous: Escemfer
 Wednesday, December 31 2014 @ 01:26 AM UTC  


I'm more than happy to explain why your link was removed from the forum! The reason I didn't post in this thread initially was because (as I think we've said before) as mods, we prefer to talk to people privately rather than publicly broadcast things. However, since you brought it up in public (and are presumably okay with talking about it in public!), I'll go ahead and address it:

I did Distract you privately, Waverly, to try to explain why the call was made. I'm sorry you're upset; that wasn't my intention at all! I also did not make the decision to remove your link by myself. It's something I talked about with other mods first, and (since I don't have the power to edit forum posts), a mod who agreed with the decision removed it for me. I was also not the only person who was uncomfortable with the link being posted: several other people, both involved and not involved in the discussion you linked to, felt uncomfortable with it being posted.

Whether or not the doc was shared with dozens of people, the conversation was definitely dominated by a handful, and some of those few had been, perhaps mistakenly, under the impression that it was more or less private (amongst a large group, yeah, but private to that group). Real names were shared, private opinions were shared, and if people had realized that, years down the road, that conversation would be shared with the entire Island, I know there are people who would not have posted (not just myself).

You would be more than welcome to share your link again if you asked those involved for their permission to post it, and deleted the remarks (or, at least, the names) of people who didn't want their comments shared. Making the doc read-only prevented anyone from removing their own comments (which is what I first intended to do) or real names. Posting it without either asking for permission or even telling people you were doing so hurt a lot of feelings, and made a lot of people uncomfortable.

As for the contents of your doc being deleted and pasted into a different doc, I'm not the mod who decided (or was able) to do that, and I don't want to speculate on why they did that. You can speak with them privately (since you know who it is, Waverly), or they might be willing to post in this thread as well.

TL;DR: Mods will remove conversations that were held off-site or in private channels if the people involved in the conversation didn't give consent for it to be posted. Not because we're censor-happy dickbags, but because it upsets people for their words to be shared without their knowledge or permission.


 
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Waverly
 Wednesday, December 31 2014 @ 01:51 AM UTC  
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The impression I'm getting is that an unknown-to-me number of people- "a lot"- had discussions with you, or other mods, that my posting the link made them uncomfortable. As mods, you all talked to them; you talked amongst yourselves; you 'made a call', you altered the thread, you altered the doc-

-- after all that, you finally got around to telling me what you had all decided about it. Not a single person brought it to my attention until after it was done. So yes. Aside from, I don't feel it was that mod's right to alter the doc like that, I am upset about this. You distracted me to explain, and that it what it was- an explanation of an ultimatum and a telling-off, not a discussion or an advisement.



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Ebenezer
 Wednesday, December 31 2014 @ 02:07 AM UTC  
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My problem is that, since an unknown number of people were apparently viewing my doc at the time, a mod went in, deleted the contents of the doc- how, I'm not sure, since I believed I had set it to 'no edit'; obviously I must not have, though- and recopied the doc to another one which they then made me the owner of. I wasn't told of this until after it was done.


That was me who did that. I didn't know you had posted that link until you had already done it. When I opened the document, numerous anonymous people were already viewing it.

I am not a mod on Google Docs. I was a participant in that document and I still had edit rights, so I copied the text, pasted it into a new document, and made you the owner of that one.

I'm sorry for not taking your feelings into account when I made that decision.


 
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Waverly
 Wednesday, December 31 2014 @ 02:39 AM UTC  
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To anyone who is reading this and was one of the people who asked a mod to step in because you felt uncomfortable or unsafe, I truly apologize.

It may be that you felt going through a mod was a safe channel, and you didn't want to start a fight with me or get into conflict, especially if you don't know me well. I think that's okay; that's what mods are there for. If I had known you were feeling that way I absolutely would have corrected the action of setting the doc to 'view only' so that comments could have been altered or names deleted. I didn't think about it beforehand for the reasons I stated in my previous post; I obviously had a very different view of it. I understand that there was a miscommunication as to the doc being a public one and there were people who didn't think of it that way, and were alarmed or scared to see it posted so long after the fact. In this case, removing the link to the doc until the situation had been resolved was a good thing to do.

However, to the moderators... I don't feel I was given any opportunity to resolve this myself. I feel heavy-handled. In a distraction from you, Esc, you said you were trying to protect friends from hurt and confusion. Why am I suddenly not included in the category of friends? You and a good few of the other mods know me, at least socially. I suddenly feel an understanding of Kolojang's anxiety of players who have been promoted to mods. I understand you are all trying to be fair and professional, but when did it become okay to give me a slap on the wrist before telling me what the problem is? You are saying you don't 'mean' to be dictating or severe, but as a player, and a friend, that is what it felt like. To me, that is what it was.

"Mods will remove conversations that were held off-site or in private channels..." Esc, wow. I hope you meant from the Enquirer, or from the Island, because that is a frightening statement to me. But really, Eben, you did just that without a word to me. So I don't feel I am out of order with my griefs on that subject. I don't hear you saying 'it was wrong of me', I hear 'I didn't mean to hurt your feelings when I did that right thing." To me it is just simply over the line. It was done in the capacity of an Island Moderator to a thing that was off-Island.

In any case... I feel this will turn into a drawn-out conversation- after this post, it already is, really- about what is still mostly a personal incident, so this is my last forum post on the matter. But for the thread, I really want to make the point that as mods, you could sometimes remember that you don't need to be afraid talking to the players about issues like this, yourselves, instead of firing off a distraction after it's done. I would have been happy to take the actions you yourselves took. Perhaps it's being held in the dark and then shocked at such liberties being taken that are so upsetting to me.


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Anonymous: Escemfer
 Wednesday, December 31 2014 @ 02:49 AM UTC  


Quote by: Waverly

"Mods will remove conversations that were held off-site or in private channels..." Esc, wow. I hope you meant from the Enquirer, or from the Island, because that is a frightening statement to me.



That's absolutely what I meant, and I'm sorry if I didn't make that clear! Off-site conversations should never, ever be posted on the Island without everyone's permission. If a conversation should be had publicly on the site, it should start there, so nobody gets upset or confused!

--And I'm sorry you feel like we didn't treat you well, Waverly. All I can say to that is that, as mods, we can't ask people if it's okay to handle a situation before we do it. We just can't. It would make things a lot more complicated for everyone. I think it was discussed earlier on the forum that mods can't, and shouldn't need to, put everything up for debate.

What we are responsible for doing, and what we do our best to do, is contact players immediately after taking any actions, explain what we did and why, and try to work through the issue with the player(s) involved-- after making sure that nobody is continuing to be hurt or upset by whatever's going on. It's not just your case, Waverly, it's every case. And in this case, and in every case, mods are always willing to talk it through, work things out, and change our decisions if if we were too hasty or too harsh. That's why we normally handle these things privately: it's a lot easier to apologize, make up, and change what's been done behind the scenes than it is to clean up hurt feelings, misinformation, and accidents that've been publicly spread all over the Island.


 
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Matthew
 Wednesday, December 31 2014 @ 02:56 AM UTC  
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And here I come like usual to follow up Waverly's grace and tact with a bunch of angry bullshit, so here I go!

Quote by: Escemfer

Mods will remove conversations that were held off-site



The fact that that's considered okay really scares me and sets a terrible precedent.

Your post doesn't jive with me because that doc was a publicly shared doc. It was not a private conversation. It doesn't matter what people thought or misunderstood. That's like saying "people are crying that you posted an old forum thread where they said things a long time ago???"

If you're upset that things you said in a public venue are revealed to the public, then welcome to the internet. Cry more.

Quote by: Escemfer

it's a lot easier to apologize, make up, and change what's been done behind the scenes than it is to clean up hurt feelings, misinformation, and accidents that've been publicly spread all over the Island.



So "it's easier to beg forgiveness than ask permission"? That's your defense?


 
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Count Sessine
 Wednesday, December 31 2014 @ 03:22 AM UTC  
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This is a matter much better settled in private than in a public forum thread.

I'm not going to delete anyone's posts because if posts start disappearing that would only make make everyone more paranoid... but in my experience having a debate about who did what wrong to whom is a sure-fire recipe for personal hurt feelings and escalation. There's no malice here, everyone involved is a nice person. It will all work out.

If this were Banter I'd be writing distractions. Since it's the Enquirer I'm going to say, cool it, guys! Eben and Waverly can sort this one out without a peanut gallery.


 
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