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Author Topic: Moderation on TMC, Community Expectations, Rules, etc.  (Read 4197 times)

Teryel

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Re: Moderation on TMC, Community Expectations, Rules, etc.
« Reply #15 on: February 25, 2018, 2:55 AM »
I think it's really too easy to dismiss the whole "toxic" thing.

Toxic is a specific word I've used. It doesn't just mean bad, or mildly harmful, or annoying. It means something which is generally harmful or delitirious toward the community at large.

Yes, the nature of opinions is that two people may disagree on what level denotes toxicity and what level denotes mere annoyance. I'll grant you that. But I do think that some sort of clause about toxicity ought to be in the rules. Here's why.

This is something the mods should be able, if needed, to sit down and talk about. "Okay, guys. Is so-and-so getting to a point where their behaviour is overall harmful to the community, setting a bad example, making it harder for newcomers to get a good read of the true nature of the community"? I trust most people here do not have to be told the difference between a user who does one annoying thing once or twice, and a user who is known for doing such a thing.
Toxicity is a state of continuous negativity. I wouldn't label one flame as an example of toxicity, but I would label a tendency toward flaming as toxic. Do you see the difference?

If you do, I hope you also see why such a flag needs to go into the rules. Even if behaviour itself isn't covered by rules, there should be an option for mods to decide amongst one another that a given user has been skirting the rules but still causing harm to the community.

I think soft-pedalling this is going to just lead to the self-same sort of drama that's been drummed up over the past few weeks, but perhaps with a different source and over a different game and user and practice. That doesn't help the community; it hurts it.

It's very easy to say that we shouldn't have a rule about toxic behaviour. It's harder to own that the community has been plagued by it off and on, and to go one step further and try to address the problem. That is what I really hope is done here, though it appears I may be in a minority here.

Well spoken. It does seem that a 'toxicity' ban could require say either a unanimous or at least 3/4 majority agreement before being enacted. Meanwhile, if need be, a cooldown could be used.

However, I would stress too that informing a person that their actions are being viewed in this way, calmly and "officially" by the moderator(s) would be important. Saying, "Hey dude, look, we understand you have strong opinions, but you're crossing lines too often. If you can't reconcile your toxic behavior, you're going to lose access to this community" tends to go over a lot better than, "Stop being toxic or you'll be banned."

Tijer

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Re: Moderation on TMC, Community Expectations, Rules, etc.
« Reply #16 on: February 25, 2018, 6:02 AM »
If you see the thread on the new moderation tool, http://www.mudconnect.com/SMF/index.php?topic=81209, this is the reason she suggested that.  So person who is being toxic, can take time to calm down.  Also one persons description of being "Toxic" could be totally different to someone elses, hence the reason all bans on here are discussed in depth before being handed out.
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Hades_Kane

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Re: Moderation on TMC, Community Expectations, Rules, etc.
« Reply #17 on: February 26, 2018, 11:18 AM »
Split and vaulted a whole lot of posts from here.

If you need to argue with another poster directly, please take it to PMs and keep these threads on topic.

http://www.mudconnect.com/SMF/index.php?topic=81213.0
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Tijer

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Re: Moderation on TMC, Community Expectations, Rules, etc.
« Reply #18 on: February 26, 2018, 2:59 PM »
If you see the thread on the new moderation tool, http://www.mudconnect.com/SMF/index.php?topic=81209, this is the reason she suggested that.  So person who is being toxic, can take time to calm down.  Also one persons description of being "Toxic" could be totally different to someone elses, hence the reason all bans on here are discussed in depth before being handed out.

ive just noticed that i missed a few words out in this response, making it look like i was accusing people of being toxic, it actually should read "... So the person who is seen to be being toxic...." apologies if it looked like i was singling anyone out that was not my intention.
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Teryel

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Re: Moderation on TMC, Community Expectations, Rules, etc.
« Reply #19 on: February 26, 2018, 8:23 PM »
Split and vaulted a whole lot of posts from here.

If you need to argue with another poster directly, please take it to PMs and keep these threads on topic.

http://www.mudconnect.com/SMF/index.php?topic=81213.0

I think you jumped the gun pretty hardcore on this one, Hades. Some of the comments made were a bit aggressive, and possibly baiting, but were still at least on topic for quite some time after the mark where you vaulted. Not split, but vaulted. And there was absolutely nothing wrong with the comment I made. It was both on topic and non-aggressive. It was responding to a comment Tijer made.


If you see the thread on the new moderation tool, http://www.mudconnect.com/SMF/index.php?topic=81209, this is the reason she suggested that.  So person who is being toxic, can take time to calm down.  Also one persons description of being "Toxic" could be totally different to someone elses, hence the reason all bans on here are discussed in depth before being handed out.

Oh, not at all.
« Last Edit: February 26, 2018, 8:29 PM by Teryel »

Tavilyn

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Re: Moderation on TMC, Community Expectations, Rules, etc.
« Reply #20 on: February 26, 2018, 9:48 PM »
Agreed with Teryel here. Why aren't the people who were being particularly aggressive dealt with specifically, instead of having a whole bunch of halfway decent posts vaulted as well?

The way this has been done, I feel just a bit as if I am being made to be at fault for being polite toward those who antagonized me. I even made a point to report a post or two which I felt might have been in breach of the rules where it pertains to personal attacking. I became firm at a few points, but I don't believe I was ever terribly aggressive. Action taken against the whole suggests that all actions, mine and theirs, were viewed equally, and that's just...no. Not in my opinion. Not in that situation.

And since this topic is about rules and such, I feel as if this post is at least modestly on topic, since it's dealing with precisely the way rules are being enforced.

I think the "everybody play nice" response is being used too much. I would like to see more targeted responses toward targeted behaviour.

Hades_Kane

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Re: Moderation on TMC, Community Expectations, Rules, etc.
« Reply #21 on: February 27, 2018, 12:46 AM »
Teyrel - I addressed it in the other post you made.

Tavilyn - most of your posts after the split was about trying to defend yourself against accusations of your posting style being "wimpy" (that post of which was also split).  If you need to argue with someone directly, take it to PMs.


If people are concerned about valid points being split or moved or whatever, then don't bury those valid points in a bunch of useless noise and nonsense, especially after multiple "don't derail this" "lets get back on topic" "focus back on the topic".

These issues that you guys are having with one another won't have any chance of being solved unless the threads we are creating and trying to discuss how to handle these things can actually stay on topic.

I favor a much lighter hand on moderation, but in these discussions that we're starting and trying to stay on focus to discuss these issues, I am going to be unapologetically heavy handed on trying to keep the noise out so we can stay focused on the topic at hand.  If every one of these topics are just going to devolve into bickering over semantics, over whose posting style is what, over what color the sky is, without us actually able to get anything productive out of them?  Then I guess I'll just have to admit I was wrong in the way I was hoping we could moderate the forums and that this relatively small community could put ego aside to try to help slow the hobby's slow but inevitable death.

This general swath of topic splitting I did?  That was about as targeted as I can get because by the time I checked this morning there was crap all over the thing and even though I was actually ready quite early for work this morning, doing my best to handle the crap here with as much finesse as I could actually made me late getting to work today.

Maybe we have less of a "a few people are toxic" problem here and the problem actually is the community itself is toxic.  The more it just seems that NOBODY can let go of a grudge or just let someone else have the last word or stay focused on anything or that there's clearly no way that any type of moderation action is going to make even half the people here happy... maybe letting "newcomers" get the impression this community is toxic is actually a service to them to save them the headache of getting mixed up in what we have going on here... and the ironic thing is from where I'm sitting, just about everyone calling for the otherside to get kicked off the forums because they see "the other guy" as the toxic problem is as much of a problem as anyone else here.

Maybe I was wrong and the community didn't need (or even want) a lighter hand and the only way we will keep the peace around here is being so heavy handed no one wants to risk stepping out of a clearly defined lane.

I'm at a loss, and if it weren't for the fact that I feel largely responsible for where we are all sitting right now, I'd be stepping away for a bit.
-Diablos
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Teryel

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Re: Moderation on TMC, Community Expectations, Rules, etc.
« Reply #22 on: February 27, 2018, 1:10 AM »
If every one of these topics are just going to devolve into bickering over semantics,

Semantics are important, as has been evidenced by at least one of those conversations that you're talking about. Reason being that how people react to certain terms or words will dictate their efficacy. I wasn't arguing semantics to be petty or trite, I was arguing them because they matter.

Maybe we have less of a "a few people are toxic" problem here and the problem actually is the community itself is toxic.  The more it just seems that NOBODY can let go of a grudge or just let someone else have the last word or stay focused on anything or that there's clearly no way that any type of moderation action is going to make even half the people here happy... maybe letting "newcomers" get the impression this community is toxic is actually a service to them to save them the headache of getting mixed up in what we have going on here... and the ironic thing is from where I'm sitting, just about everyone calling for the otherside to get kicked off the forums because they see "the other guy" as the toxic problem is as much of a problem as anyone else here.

Unfortunately, I think this is largely accurate. However, I think it's also the general nature of forums, and I have thought that way for years. I've never met a forum that didn't eventually devolve into such behaviors unless the moderation was rather strict and firm and unilateral[/i] so as to reduce resentments.

Maybe I was wrong and the community didn't need (or even want) a lighter hand and the only way we will keep the peace around here is being so heavy handed no one wants to risk stepping out of a clearly defined lane.

I think if you let some people skate the edges of the rules and creating toxicity while punishing those that respond to them, then yes, the toxicity is going to continue from all sides.

Tavilyn

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Re: Moderation on TMC, Community Expectations, Rules, etc.
« Reply #23 on: February 27, 2018, 3:33 AM »
Hades, I can respect the position you're in. I really can.
At the same time, I think you might be overcomplicating it or perhaps missing the point just a bit. Your tireless efforts are not falling on deaf ears, as it were. Let me try and explain.

Okay, so there's semi-productive discussion going on.
Person 1, person 2 and person 3 are flogging ideas around. Maybe there are digressions, but in general, noise is at a low. A little noise, in my opinion, is totally okay.
Then suddenly person 4 comes in, states an opinion, and attacks person 1 in some fashion.
Okay. Hold up right there. That's where things start getting problematic.
At this point, you can argue that it's up to 1, 2 and 3 to play nice and not dogpile person 4. I'd agree with you. But to expect person 1 to stay entirely quiet is probably not reasonable. So if person 1 tries to keep on topic but responds with a bit more noise, that isn't great, but the onus is still largely on person 4 for creating the issue.

This is what I meant by targeted behaviour and targeted responses. I described, in rough, what happened. Only instead of focusing more largely on the person or people who brought in the largest volume of noise, you just split everything off. This treats all makers of noise as equal regardless of where it came from or why.

Instigation means something, and I don't think that's being respected here in many instances, not lately anyway.

While I do understand that you're perhaps feeling as if you're in a can't-win scenario, I think this is a good ongoing discussion to have. I can disagree with parts of what you're doing while still commending your efforts in general. I can understand why you are trying your hardest to eliminate noise.

Now let me explain something from my perspective for just a moment.

If someone makes an attack on me, even if it's a relatively small one as has happened here, I have several options.
1. I can ignore it completely. This, to my way of thinking, lets the perpetrator go on doing whatever they did because they aren't being stopped.
2. I can report it. But I don't want to report every little thing that ruffles my feathers. That gets stupid.
3. I can respond, politely but firmly, and ask whoever it was to explain themselves or to cease the behaviour. This isn't so much noise as self-defense, of a sort. Of course, response vs. harm matters here; I'm not going to go at it with both guns blazing for a small slight, as that, too, is stupid.
4. I can go on staying on topic and let the slights pile up. This is, unfortunately, a problem I've seen on the forum before, and on many others as well.
I think part of the problem is that when certain comments, the kind which really shouldn't be made, are made, I do not actually have complete faith that the people levelling them will be dealt with, and so I take it into my hands to confront them. I try and do it politely, because I, too, respect the idea of staying on topic, but I don't want to just lie back and let it happen. And I suspect that I am not the only one who holds this standpoint.

Ateraan

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Re: Moderation on TMC, Community Expectations, Rules, etc.
« Reply #24 on: February 27, 2018, 4:32 AM »
I'm at a loss, and if it weren't for the fact that I feel largely responsible for where we are all sitting right now, I'd be stepping away for a bit.
Sometimes you are damned if you do and damned if you don't. You are doing a fine job Hades. I didn't agree with you splitting and vaulting but I understand why you did and I'm fine with your decision.

I do not believe we have a community that is toxic, but we do have a community that sometimes gets fired up over some topics and are personal when it comes to some things, but that is not unlike any other forum anywhere on the net.

We are for the most part like players on our MUDs: A bunch of whiner pants because we aren't in charge and it is way easier to complain then to lead.  8)
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Molly

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Re: Moderation on TMC, Community Expectations, Rules, etc.
« Reply #25 on: February 27, 2018, 10:56 AM »
Thank you all for your input and contribution, we feel we have what we need to make decisions on how to proceed from here.
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