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Author Topic: A Suggestion on Thread Closings  (Read 8961 times)
Crackerjacker
Member

Posts: 67


« Reply #15 on: May 06, 2004, 06:59:02 AM »

See. Right now my suggestion and refusal to submit is offensive, soon it will be considered flaming and I will be banned from the forum or in some other way in trouble.
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greyorm
Member

Posts: 2233

My name is Raven.


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« Reply #16 on: May 06, 2004, 07:01:06 AM »

Quote from: Crackerjacker
fact, I'm afraid of this thread being closed. I'm afraid of the moderators posting here and then expecting the topic to be "done with", I'm afraid of getting in trouble just for this suggestion, and I'm also feeling quite outnumbered and match

All of which is...well, your own problem. Because this thread will not be closed nor will you "get in trouble" just because you disagree with the moderators, or are suggesting an alternate method to doing something.

While standard practice, and reasonable worries on other fora, this board doesn't work that way, either.

Think of it this way: this is not standard internet forum-based culture; you're in a whole nother country now. Same planet, yes, different country. Different local laws and regulations apply from what you're used to "back home."
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Rev. Ravenscrye Grey Daegmorgan
Wild Hunt Studio
Christopher Kubasik
Member

Posts: 1153


« Reply #17 on: May 06, 2004, 07:01:26 AM »

[Oops.  I just cross-posted this with the last five posts!  And Crackerjack, here's another example of Forge etiquette -- I note this to say, "I'm not trying to gang up on you with everyone.  We all posted to respond to you at the same moment, not to pummel you."]

Crackerjack,

Let me try this from another angle.

My first post, my very first post on the Forge some two years ago, was wrong.

Having no idea how the Forge worked (and really, having had almost no experience with online communities), I read lots and lots of threads for a few weeks to get a feel for the place.  I decided I liked it.  I decided to post on a thread that intrigued me.

I did.  The thread I responded to was well over a year old.  I, in Forge parlance, "resurected" the thread.  

That isn't done around here.

Here's what happened.  Someone commented that isn't done around here.  Ron showed up to explain *why* it isn't done, split my comment from the old thread, and I had started my first thread.

In other words, my "mistake" was a learning experience.  Not an occassion for punishment.

Crackerjack, can you see that this is the tenor around here?

A couple of more points:  

Mosts of the posts on this thread are not here to smack you down, but to provide the wide variety of reasons why threads aren't locked down.  We're responding to your suggestion.  You may not like the responses -- but no one here is out to get you or anything.

There are no penalities for being wrong here (as far as I know.)

If you make an error in Forge etiquette, someone will point it out to you.  No big deal.  Really.  Mistakes aren't tallied up around here to use as cudgels in later arguements.  In other words, take a breath.  Relax.  Hang out for a while.

Let's leave aside the issue of locking threads for a short while.  You seem particularly concerned with people getting snagged for making an error.  Let that go.

Christopher

PS  Please.  Five people have assured you that you can't be "ejected" or driven from the board or whatever from the Forge.  Your fears are flying in the face of what everyone is saying.  Are you actually reading the posts?
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"Can't we for once just do what we're supposed to do -- and then stop?
Lemonhead, The Shield
Ron Edwards
Global Moderator
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Posts: 16490


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« Reply #18 on: May 06, 2004, 07:12:20 AM »

Hiya,

As some of you are perceiving, this thread is beginning to look like a little bit of a dogpile, so let's all give CJ some space. Which means, even if you have the perfect rebuttal or point to make, there's no harm in waiting for a couple hours.

CJ, you're welcome here. Now, you can decide which of these two things is going on.

1. I'm lying, and am actually ready to embarass you in any possible way I can, and look really really innocent when I do it. In fact, everyone else is anticipating this.

2. I'm telling the truth, and you're merely adjusting to a new environment and deciding whether to stick around (and if not, no hard feelings, hope you come back some time).

Up to you, of course.

Best,
Ron
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DevP
Member

Posts: 576


WWW
« Reply #19 on: May 06, 2004, 07:15:26 AM »

Other folks have recently suggested addings things like "Closed" stickers and the like, and this locked/closed question does come up frequently, so you're not off-base or anything. I think a closed sticker, or some other helpful block to a closed thread, would be nice.

IMHO the policy isn't really a test, but sort of an aesthetic. Moderator thread-closings are not in fact the usual case, and when they are it's supposed to feel more like a discussion moderator ending Part I of a debate to move on to Part II, rather than the other side of moderation being an ironclad lockdown.

If you're ever concerned about if something you were going to do is Forge-apropos, just go ahead and PM Ron or Clinton, or hell, bounce it off some other member whose offered (like me).
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Eric J-D
Member

Posts: 187


« Reply #20 on: May 06, 2004, 08:00:17 AM »

Crackerjacker,

Some of your references to Big Brother, to your fears of having your thread closed or of your posts being considered flaming, as well as to your belief that in not adopting the policy of locking threads the Forge is creating tests and setting traps for newcomers suggest that you are inclined to believe the worst about this place until someone proves you wrong.  What's that about?  In all of the responses you have received people have stressed repeatedly that while the culture of the Forge is different from other boards no one is out to get anyone.

You seem to have painted the moderators into a bit of an absurd position: if they refuse to lock threads you seem to believe that in doing so they are laying traps for the unsuspecting, thus the only way they can prove that they aren't is to lock every thread.  To ease one person's anxiety, they have to come in as the big heavies and lock every thread after it is clear that the thread is closed.  But won't this new policy of locking threads actually make the folks at the Forge appear worse than if they simply allowed the current (and functioning) practice of tacitly agreeing not to post to older threads or to threads that have been requested to be closed to continue?  After all, discontinuing a policy that seems to work fine and adopting a new, more heavy-handed onecould raise suspicions and fears rather than allay them.

You said yourself that you are afraid of your thread being closed by the moderators of the list.  Wouldn't locking every thread close it with an even more forceful sounding snap of the lid?  How would this alleviate your fear?    

Honestly, I don't see any reason for your request.  Things seem to work pretty well here, folks at the Forge are among the most helpful I have seen, no one is asking anyone to submit or engaging in any of the other coercive, Big Brother-like activities you describe, so why does it need to change?  Do we really need someone to impose a new measure when longstanding agreements still seem to be working well.

You can feel free to disagree all you want; no one is going to silence you.  If many of us disagree with your position, it is because we have both reasons behind our own positions and some experience of seeing how well things function at the Forge without the heavy-handed measure of locking threads that you seem to be promoting.

I hope that in my response you will not hear the sound of jackboots on hard tile or the chilly voice of Big Brother but a sympathetic echo of Christopher's point that you relax, take in the atmosphere, and not assume the worst in the absence of any evidence.

Eric
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Eric J-D
Member

Posts: 187


« Reply #21 on: May 06, 2004, 08:03:31 AM »

Ron,

Sorry, I was writing my reply before yours got posted.

Eric
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Crackerjacker
Member

Posts: 67


« Reply #22 on: May 06, 2004, 01:09:23 PM »

"Some of your references to Big Brother, to your fears of having your thread closed or of your posts being considered flaming, as well as to your belief that in not adopting the policy of locking threads the Forge is creating tests and setting traps for newcomers suggest that you are inclined to believe the worst about this place until someone proves you wrong. What's that about?"

Well, in general, the internet is not a place to go without your gloves and goggles...that is to say that I, a youth, have to have to keep my head down or will get blasted in most places. I am not the most articulate person, but I consider myself fairly intellectual, evenhanded, and even a pretty good writer. This hasn't kept me from getting sufficiently thrashed in many internet hubs and such. However, I will admit that I am a bit paranoid, as showed in my last post. Still, in general, my opinion still stands, but I can understand the reasons of why locking isn't neccesary, and why it's never been a problem even when people do accidentally post on them. I would suggest that while my suggestion may be a bit too radical for a board so steeped in it's customs, it might be worth looking into meeting halfway at what someone mentioned earlier, tagging threads so people can see that they're closed before even clicking on them.
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Mike Holmes
Acts of Evil Playtesters
Member

Posts: 10459


« Reply #23 on: May 06, 2004, 01:49:10 PM »

Quote
I would suggest that while my suggestion may be a bit too radical for a board so steeped in it's customs, it might be worth looking into meeting halfway at what someone mentioned earlier, tagging threads so people can see that they're closed before even clicking on them.
It seems that maybe you missed some of the comments related to this. One of the reasons that threads are not locked is so as to not give the impression that the subject of the thread is bad, or that people aren't allowed to post about those things. Just because a thread is closed at The Forge doesn't mean that the subject is closed. It merely means that people should start new threads on the subject. Putting a closed marker might have the same chilling effect on discourse. People, especially the new people that you're so concerned about, might see the marker and think that the subject matter must not be worth reading (they assuming that the thread might have been closed for flaming or something), or that they wouldn't be allowed to post on that subject again at all because it had been moderated into some closed status.

Basically we want closing to be a normal part of the discourse, and not a moderator function at all. Again, individuals should be able to close threads as well, like they do now.

We do a lot of closing, not because we're finished with the subject, but because threads have a certain lifecycle to them - after a while they may start wandering. It actually helps at that point to close the thread and require new ones be started up. Something about the psychology of that act makes the new threads more focused, and back on track. And there's the issue of the historicity of the arguments which makes it so that aging threads need to be closed off (you've heard those arguments, haven't you)?

What all this means is that if we're going to be so dedicatedly closing threads all the time, that we can't be putting a symbol on the thread that might say to somebody that they shouldn't post there.

Put it this way - we want people to make the "mistake" of thread resurrection, not to "catch" them and make them ashamed, but because we want them to post their post. If they saw the topic closed or locked, they would probably not post at all. So when this happens, the new person gets their post split off into a new thread of their own like we want to see, and the discussion continues.

Can you see that POV?

The option to lock threads came with the software that Clinton uses, and it does have it's purposes. Sometimes, very rarely, the moderators do have to lock a thread to keep the peace or something. What this also means is that if you see one of the rare locked threads, you understand that the post in question is probably not going to be up to The Forge standard. We don't want that on posts that are closed simply because they are complete.

Mike
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Christopher Kubasik
Member

Posts: 1153


« Reply #24 on: May 06, 2004, 02:22:24 PM »

If I may, most of the threads I've seen locked are locked not because the poster involved isn't up to Forge standards.  It's because the poster involved is off the Forge map.  This is either by design (the Birthday Threads), or sheer loco engery (spamming).

When it comes to "standards" -- people either stay and "get it" or leave and don't.  But unless there's a secret grading comittee out there that no one told me about, I'm not that worry about meeting the standards.

(Mike, this reply isn't so much because you're assuming such standards.  I just wanna be clear on how the Forge grades -- it doesn't.  But you do have to show up to play by the rules.)

Christopher
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"Can't we for once just do what we're supposed to do -- and then stop?
Lemonhead, The Shield
Mike Holmes
Acts of Evil Playtesters
Member

Posts: 10459


« Reply #25 on: May 07, 2004, 08:51:21 AM »

That's what I meant, Chris. The standard is actually very low in terms of not getting locked. Basically you have to be communicative. It's only people who are either spamming, or just completely trolling without responding (I think that I've seen one of these, maybe two) that get locked. In fact there have been a couple of trolls that didn't have to be locked because nobody responded, so it couldn't be determined if they were responsive or not. It's only the one troll that I can think of that actually got people to respond (and then didn't himself) that got locked.

Mike
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