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Moderating in News and Rumours


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#26
Panzer

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I honestly don't see any reason why 3rd party news should be excluded as long as they are 40k relevant. It's not like one has to read every single thread. If you aren't interested in it, just don't click on it. The world isn't just about you and this is not a Games Workshop forum.

 

The only thing I can agree on is the premature thread closing and redirecting to the faction specific forums. This kills discussions and if you get lucky and get a discussion running again it'll be a really one-sided one because you more or less turned it into an echo chamber where only people of a similar mindset read the thread.


Edited by Panzer, 30 March 2020 - 07:09 PM.

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#27
coldfyre

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Just wanted to say I really appreciate the admin and mod team being open to these suggestions. It feels like the news/rumors subforum has relaxed a bit and it feels like there's new life there - I don't know if it bears out in the view/post count metrics that the admins see, but either way it makes me really happy to see and I hope you know that I appreciate it at least.

 

Thanks again!


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#28
Taliesin

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I pretty much feel the same way as what Panzer posts above. The main issue with the news and rumours forum is that threads are closed too quickly.

Sometimes the threads there are the most interesting ones in the forum and I have noticed they get shut down incredibly quickly sometimes.

 

And the problem is that the redirecting to subforums to start all over again simply does not work. I'd almost go so far as to say it almost never works from what I have seen. I will be in a very interesting thread in " news"  and bam it gets shut, with the request to go to a subforum. I get there and either find no thread, or one that is lifeless or at best, gets loads less input and traffic than the one going on in " news" . And the end result is a dead discussion on all fronts.

 

Feel obliged to say that I generally think the mods here do a real good job in the forums. And I do think that sometimes when stuff gets out of hand, posts can be edited or deleted,totally valid. But the closing of the threads is a real bummer. I also wish sometimes they wouldnt be killed the moment a product is released....allow for a little bit of reflection and afterglow.



#29
Dosjetka

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And the problem is that the redirecting to subforums to start all over again simply does not work. I'd almost go so far as to say it almost never works from what I have seen. I will be in a very interesting thread in " news"  and bam it gets shut, with the request to go to a subforum. I get there and either find no thread, or one that is lifeless or at best, gets loads less input and traffic than the one going on in " news" . And the end result is a dead discussion on all fronts.

It doesn't work because people don't take the time to post there: if people posted in the subfora, we'd have more activity there which would encourage more people to pop by and post, etc.

And, conversely, if we take the opposite path to the extreme and there was no divison by faction/Codex, there wouldn't be any point in there being a B&C forum because it'd be a hodge-podge mess like Reddit or Facebook. And I think we all appreciate to some degree that there is a clear-cut structure on this website.

One of the reasons behind the thread closure and redirects is, quite simply, to try and get people to post in army/faction/Codex-specific areas because, at least in my view, that is where discussions should take place on a online forum.

 

The other issue is, while it's great to have areas of general discussion, in the case of NR&BA, topics tend to have posts that discuss all sorts of things that are often only tangentially related to the subject at hand and that bothers folks who just want the information and not the chatter that follows. It also makes it difficult for the staff who take time and energy to trawl through these threads to try and organise things to a degree. It's not a fun task in the slightest, which is perhaps why there's a tendancy to take more hard-line approach to topics in NR&BA in particular.


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#30
Panzer

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Sorry, but I somewhat disagree.

Disrupting and relocating a discussion doesn't work and the people aren't to blame there. I'm on multiple discord servers and other forums and it's always a big moderation problem. It's just a basic psychology thing.

Nobody talks about not dividing by faction/Codex either though. All we are asking is not to prematurely disrupt discussions in the N&R threads like it happened in the SW vs Ork one not too long ago. The dividing is good and necessary but shouldn't get forced in the middle of an ongoing discussion for no real reason. Redirecting people when things go offtopic or when the prodcuct is released (or shortly after) is perfectly fine though.


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#31
Dosjetka

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I don't disagree that there is an moderation issue, but the moderation issue hasn't somehow arisen from nowhere, Panzer. I don't think it's unfair to suggest that people's behaviour and tendancy to post about things that are only tangentially-related in what should be a fairly focussed discussion is a factor in the current situation.
Furthermore, there's no need to feel singled out if such is the case as it was an intentionally broad statement. I'm not looking to pin the blame on any particular individual or factor simply because that would be ignoring the multitude of other factors which is at best foolish.

In the specific case of the "Saga of the Beast" thread, there was an attempt to try something different and, given the response, it hasn't worked. We've understood that, that's fine, and we're trying to find concrete and inclusive solutions to this issue. Being combative about the subject and minimising it to "a basic psychology" problem isn't helping.


Edited by Dosjetka, 01 April 2020 - 08:03 AM.

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#32
Panzer

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Oh I'm not combative at all. I'm just pointing out that there's an issue with that kind of approach in hope that the moderation team can find something better.


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#33
Dosjetka

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Oh I'm not combative at all. I'm just pointing out that there's an issue with that kind of approach in hope that the moderation team can find something better.

It's frankly quite disappointing that you're not interested in being part of a joint effort to find a solution to an issue you clearly feel strongly about and seem satisfied with just criticising.


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#34
Panzer

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Well I don't think it's my place to try and solve something like that. Many places would see that as backseat moderating. sweat.gif

 

Personally though I don't really see there being a perfect solution. Either you allow discussion in the N&R section which requires a lot of moderation work to keep people in line or you don't allow it at all to reduce the burden on the mods by spreading the discussion all across the forum. Neither is ideal as one means lots of work for the mods and the other means discussions involving a less broad spectrum of users and thus potentially less interesting discussions or interesting discussions not being seen by many users.


Edited by Panzer, 01 April 2020 - 09:36 AM.

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#35
Nemesor Tyriks

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As Noseranda said on the previous page, there are a handful of posters who often seem to be involved when threads go off-topic, and it seems more fitting to be harder on them instead of locking the threads they post in.  If there was an option to block one user from a thread or forum it seems like it would greatly reduce the need for moderation in some areas of the site.  

 

Additionally, I think it would help foster discussion in the various forums if instead of locking the existing thread in NR&BA, the thread was moved to the appropriate forum when it was no longer considered news.  As it is now, it is difficult to keep conversation going when you're trying to respond to points made outside of the thread you're in.  And if you missed the original thread and are trying to join in after the fact, it is very confusing and sometimes the original thread can't be found.  Seems like just moving the thread to the appropriate forum (or splitting it into two forums in the situations that is appropriate) would be the easiest way to keep conversations intact.


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#36
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Personally, in regards to the thread handling, I'm in agreement that it would be nice if we could keep the threads open and going as long as possible so that they survive to release day for the content they're about.

 

And once the release day comes, if its a multi-faction thread like the Beast Arises example, then we try to split the topic, putting the relevant discussions into their sub-forums so the overall topic isn't lost to the ether that is the older news thread logs.  That way anyone pursuing continued discussion on an idea in that thread may do so in their sub-forum, and, it helps keep the NRA section "cleaner" for people to see and discuss the next batch of new rumor threads, etc.

In regards to the 3rd party stuff, that's in there [NRA], because, frankly, it is an announcement; it's them saying hey, we have new minis/bitz for you to do conversions to your collections."  That's why it's the News, Rumors, and Announcements Sub-forum.  And we keep it all in one consolidated thread, so they don't post in multiple sub faction areas when they're a company that makes bitz for multiple armies.

 

Could we make another sub-forum just for the 3rd party announcement threads? Sure. But as you may notice, we already have many many sub-forum sections as it is; and as one user already pointed out, they didn't even know the one this very discussion is happening in even existed.  So making another for 3rd party models may be redundant.


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#37
alfred_the_great

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I think perhaps the broader point is that it's ok for discussion in places like news & rumours to be much more free-wheeling and discursive.

I get that the same old posters can go back over old ground, but against that, when I'm chatting amongst friends I have never just stuck to a single topic at a time, discussed that, decided it was time never to speak of it again and then start a whole new conversation about another topic.

There's a significant middle ground to the current approach and a Reddit style morass; I can't help but there is a little bit too much "rules control the fun" going on.

As to suggesting that the discussion should automatically follow the closure and movement of posts, perhaps it's worthwhile for the moderation team to seek to understand why that isn't happening, and the auto-response not to be to blame the users...
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#38
Black Blow Fly

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I like to see third party information and overall I think the forum is well moderated - not exactly an easy job either imo .


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#39
The Observer

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I think perhaps the broader point is that it's ok for discussion in places like news & rumours to be much more free-wheeling and discursive.

I get that the same old posters can go back over old ground, but against that, when I'm chatting amongst friends I have never just stuck to a single topic at a time, discussed that, decided it was time never to speak of it again and then start a whole new conversation about another topic.

There's a significant middle ground to the current approach and a Reddit style morass; I can't help but there is a little bit too much "rules control the fun" going on.

As to suggesting that the discussion should automatically follow the closure and movement of posts, perhaps it's worthwhile for the moderation team to seek to understand why that isn't happening, and the auto-response not to be to blame the users...

These are two fantastic points.

 

Conversations meander and veer to this and that side - it's what they do and what is inherent to verbal interaction. Deciding when that veering away has gone too far is crucial, but has been handled far too rigorously in the last few months in my opinion. Pruning and cutting into anything that isn't 99.99999% related to the OP topic at hand just stifles conversation and is counterproductive. If a side-conversation cannot be engaged - within reasonable limits of topicality and behaviour - within a bigger conversation, then there is no other point for the N&R forum to exist as it does right now.

 

What has also become apparent - from private conversations and public discourse on the matter - is that the mods, or at least some of them, view the closure of an N&R thread and the shifting of topics to the relevant sub-forums as a "shifting" or "relocating" of the conversation - or rather, the conversation is just being moved but apart from that continues onwards as before. This isn't quite correct, really. The conversation is being interrupted and stopped, and then has to later on be unpacked again by participants and mods alike so that it can be picked up again. This is tedious and stifling to the flow of interaction and communication. Imagine talking about something in the kitchen, someone comes in and tells you "Not in here, do that in room x" and so now you get up - mid-conversation - relocate, sit down and then try to pick things up again. Except, by that point one usually has lost interest or connection to the prior topic, but is still frustrated. We've all been there.

 

As Alfred_the_great says, there are a lot of reasons as to why traction barely picks up again in subforums. Lack of exposure to the average user, frustration over topic pruning, frustration over interruption of conversations, general annoyance of not really knowing how much off-topic is too much, lack of cross-faction pollination within the conversation (Some ork players might be interested in conversing on the new release with wolves players and vice versa for ex.), selective interest in specific sub forums etc.

 

I do appreciate and understand that moderating any subforum is a big undertaking and that it takes a lot of time, nerves and work - but pushing this onto the community à la "Well they COULD talk about that stuff there - they just aren't doing this for whatever reason" just seems like an attempt to distance oneself from something that is clearly a two-way street.


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#40
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Really crudely, no recommendation as such:

 

- I really, really like the policy of no-fault message deletion/topic pruning. Discussions have their own momentum that members sometimes appear oblivious to, and the clear steer from mods in these topics feels firm and fair without folks feeling like they have a permanent mark against them; it's happened to me a few times and it's genuinely helpful.

 

- I like the policy of closing N&R threads on release date. By this point, the topics have become bloated and inaccessible and it's a clear sell-by-date to remove them.

 

- I dislike when non-product news seems to get locked very quickly - topics such as results, personnel changes and miscellaneous business news. This could just be a gut feeling based on my own biases, but my sense is that these are shut down just as a very good discussion starts to build, and this may be the deliberate intent. I appreciate these topics can be riskier ground and lack that clear sell-by-date, but the impression is that the discussion is seen as a surplus 'tail' to the announcement itself.


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#41
Brother Casman

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I'm going to throw out a question to the folks involved in this discussion - do you feel that the discussion of news has to happen in the NR&BA forum? (I'm deliberately excluding rumours in my question)
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#42
The Observer

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I'm going to throw out a question to the folks involved in this discussion - do you feel that the discussion of news has to happen in the NR&BA forum? (I'm deliberately excluding rumours in my question)


It's where I would expect it to happen instinctively speaking. The WiP section is there to post and discuss wips, the blood angels subforum is there to post about blood angels and discuss them and so on.
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#43
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I'm going to throw out a question to the folks involved in this discussion - do you feel that the discussion of news has to happen in the NR&BA forum? (I'm deliberately excluding rumours in my question)

Id certainly expect so, though some does happen elsewhere, Mostly the Imperial agents forum which i suppose is because we are so desperate for crumbs we get super hyped :D 



#44
Panzer

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I mean, technically you could have all the discussions happen in Amicus Aedes and pretty much instantly close the news threads after the initial stuff got posted. We do something similar on the Blood Angels discord to not clutter the N&R channel too much and so people can find the newest stuff right away.

However that's a chat and this is a forum. Here one could simply go back to the first page and read up on the important stuff without having to sort through the discussions, so all it would do is to double up on threads for the same topic while having the N&R slow down to a crawl because it would require the mods to open and close threads all the time to prevent any discussion from happening there.

 

 

If the question however was whether we think that we need a central place for such discussions to happen in the first place instead of splitting them into all the various subforums though, then my answer is a definite "yes, I do".


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#45
omo667

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I don't know if my opinion is welcome, because I use this forum only rarely.

 

But on our language-specific forum board we have two topics for wh40k news - one is only pictures & links to wh40k stuff (it's called "only important stuff", and the other topic is called "discussion of news"). Maybe this might help? The discussion could be in news directory or in "generic adeptus" directory.


Edited by omo667, 04 April 2020 - 03:43 AM.

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#46
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Your opinion is most welcome, omo667.

 

The more frater who comment with their views in this thread the better.


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#47
Reclusiarch Krieg

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Personally, I'm on the "let the discussions flow" side. Just ensure people are not at their throats. Once new items in the thread pop up, people's attention will be grabbed back without artificial direction. The splitting and quelling of threads does indeed disrupt the discussion severely - you don't even know if people noticed the split and will follow. It's like you're having a chat at a table in a restaurant, people are coming and going (to the bar, to the toilet) and at one point the servers make you switch to another room in the same restaurant. You can't leave a note at the previous table, one people come it will be locked down and no sight of you anymore. If they are strangers, as here, they will often not bother to look for you elsewhere and continue your random chat.

My solution would be to have the mods pick up actual newsworthy stuff (new images, new quotes, confirmed data, etc.) and put it in the first post in the thread. This way everyone can default to Post #1 to check if there's anything new - without digging through the whole thread - while the rest can talk.

 

I've seen splitting topics into "thread with actual news" and "thread with discussion about the news" and it only creates a mess. People will still come to the "talking" thread and post images there because they want to talk about them in context.


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#48
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Tangentially related: I would like to see Mods step in quicker when personal attacks get lobbed. I've seen nasty, serious, character-questioning arguments go for pages on N&R topics and I can't understand why greater steps aren't taken to stop that behavior before it reaches a boiling point. 


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#49
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#50
The Observer

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My solution would be to have the mods pick up actual newsworthy stuff (new images, new quotes, confirmed data, etc.) and put it in the first post in the thread. This way everyone can default to Post #1 to check if there's anything new - without digging through the whole thread - while the rest can talk.

To be fair to our Mods in regards to this suggestion and the answer time when gak gets lobbed at people - we do have to remember that the Mod team is not inexhaustible and quite limited in count. People have work schedules, need to eat, sleep and actually live their lives so such vast amounts of supervision and keeping up to date with news within threads might very well just not be feasible.


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