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Rethinking Forum Moderation

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Orcrist9
Oct Gold Premier Club Member 2015

Orcrist9

Posts: 7,149Rune Posts by user Forum Profile RuneMetrics Profile
Introduction:


In the past year-or-so, it seems that Forum Moderation has gotten noticeably weaker and more sporadic and less well-kept, and I think much of that is due to the recent forum rules and CoC changes to loosen the stringent rules up a bit. While I fully supported that decision, I can't deny it has had an observable influence, from my perspective, on the operation of Forum Moderation, and that is not at all the F-Mods fault (I don't see it as anyone's fault, but an unfortunate consequence).

I think it has become less clear for F-Mods and players on what is permitted and what isn't. That is, as mentioned, an unfortunate consequence of the loosening of the rules. I think the biggest issue with the rule changes is that is has left much of the moderation to the discretion of the F-Mods and less of a criteria for moderating the forums with clear, transparent guidelines on what is and isn't allowed, available to both players and F-Mods. As such, Forum Moderation has become less consistent and has suffered, leaving players confused on what is and isn't permitted anymore

I would like us to have an open discussion addressing these issues and to rethink how Forum Moderation currently works in an effort to provide more clarity, transparency, and consistency to moderation.

In the course of that discussion, I am posting this thread and will focus on discussing notable issues, possible solutions to address those issues, and considerations on making posting guidelines more consistent and transparent for posters and F-Mods alike.
Here, I'll give you this strawberry if you keep it a secret!

12-Apr-2018 17:29:13 - Last edited on 12-Apr-2018 17:58:28 by Orcrist9

Orcrist9
Oct Gold Premier Club Member 2015

Orcrist9

Posts: 7,149Rune Posts by user Forum Profile RuneMetrics Profile
Notable Issues:


1. One of the biggest issues I'm seeing is the moderation of controversial and heated topics throughout the OSRS, RS3, and Off-Topic forums, which usually ends with an F-Mod just locking the thread and a new one being opened later.

2. There also seem to be a number of spam/troll/flamebait threads that come into posting, and unfortunately, these threads are never locked until after pages of pages of constant trolling and flaming.

3. Following the previous issue, the posters of these threads continue to make such threads without consequence. Even though they are known to regular posters within specific forum communities, they do not seem to be as conspicuous to F-Mods considering the perpetuation of their posts and threads.

4. The Off-Topic Forum hosts a number of real-world controversial threads, and while ideally, posters would be able to maturely discuss these matters, some times the topics seem to heated, and in almost every instance, there are trolls and flamers who derail the threads consistently.

5. Due to the rule changes, threads are moderated and posts are hidden/locked at F-Mods discretion, and the biggest issue with this is the inconsistency in hiding/locking posts and thread because F-Mod discretion is more akin to a judge's common-law interpretation opposed to clear, transparent guidelines available to both players and F-Mods.
Here, I'll give you this strawberry if you keep it a secret!

12-Apr-2018 17:37:10

Orcrist9
Oct Gold Premier Club Member 2015

Orcrist9

Posts: 7,149Rune Posts by user Forum Profile RuneMetrics Profile
Possible Solutions:


I will be addressing solutions to the aforementioned issues within these distinct groups: heated topics/discussions, flame/troll threads and posters, and the rule changes and forum guidelines.

1. When it comes to head topics and discussions, I think we should first consider the Off-Topic Forum's controversial thread topics. These address a variety of topics including religion, political views, tragic real world events, etc., etc.. My suggestion here is to either ban these topics once more, or to create a separate, hidden (requires being logged-in) NSFW forum to allow players to discuss those topics.

Additionally, as with the other heated topics/discussions, instead of F-Mods locking the thread, I think they might consider being more proactive in moderating the threads and dealing with troll/spam/flame posts and work towards diffusing situations before they spiral into outrageous thread derailing. I know that is asking a lot on F-Mods, but I believe I have a solution for that in my next point.

2. I believe there should be stronger moderation against flamers, trolls, and spammers who derail threads and continuously post illegitimate threads (threads clearly written to troll, flame, and antagonize other posters).

I believe there needs to be a more diligent "strike" system when it comes to dealing with flaming, trolling, and spamming. Such as a 3-strike system, depending on the severity of the offense. Not only that, but if possible, I think it would help if F-Mods and J-Mods were able to be more diligent in monitoring the posts of these posters to prevent their derailing of many legitimate threads and to preemptively halt the production of illegitimate threads from being posted and taking away from the legitimate threads already in circulation.

Lastly, I will be concluding with moderation and forum guidelines consistency and transparency in my final post.
Here, I'll give you this strawberry if you keep it a secret!

12-Apr-2018 17:49:46

Orcrist9
Oct Gold Premier Club Member 2015

Orcrist9

Posts: 7,149Rune Posts by user Forum Profile RuneMetrics Profile
Consistency and Transparency in Moderation and Guidelines:


As I've mentioned, the rule changes have left many thread decisions to the discretion of the F-Mods, and in a number of cases, this has created inconsistencies and has left a lack of transparency and clarity on forum rules and the CoC.

To address this issue, I believe the CoC and Forum Rules need to be updated to clearly and concisely reflect what is and isn't allowed to be posted since the change in rules. In doing this, it will provide direct clarity and transparency available to both posters and the F-Mods in future posting and moderation.

More than likely, this feat will have to be undertaken by the Community Management Team in conjunction with the active F-Mods, for right now, they are the most privy to what is and isn't allowed.

This list should be periodically updated as new issues are settled when they arise, and should also be updated when Jagex makes new considerations or alterations to current rules/guidelines. Consequently, new stickied threads should be posted in the relevant forums when changes and updates are made.

What I've posted here is neither comprehensive nor set-in-stone and can be updated and changed, but I wanted to being this discussion and dialogue between the players, the F-Mods, and Jagex for the betterment of the community.

Thank you for reading and please feel free to discuss and contribute your own thoughts and obversations.
Here, I'll give you this strawberry if you keep it a secret!

12-Apr-2018 17:57:55

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13-Apr-2018 00:32:52

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13-Apr-2018 01:42:27

FiFi LaJolie
Dec Member 2015

FiFi LaJolie

Posts: 18,743Opal Posts by user Forum Profile RuneMetrics Profile
Dong, you really ought to remove all that you know. You've totally derailed the author's thread by turning into your personal complaint platform. It's a bit rude.
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13-Apr-2018 01:56:54

Tren
May
fmod Gold Premier Club Member
2003

Tren

Forum Moderator Posts: 80,629Emerald Posts by user Forum Profile RuneMetrics Profile
@ Dong U Dead - Your posts above have been removed as they are both 'naming & shaming' and off topic to this thread.

This thread is Orcrist9's suggestion for changing/improving the moderation of the forums. It is not for you to name players whose posts you think need moderating.
~Tren

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13-Apr-2018 02:23:19

Wolfblue42

Wolfblue42

Posts: 3,674Adamant Posts by user Forum Profile RuneMetrics Profile
I agree with being stricter on deliberate thread derailing. If they are warned multiple times and they still continue to attack others in the same topic they should just be temp banned.

Its just ruining topics if they have to hide pages worth of posts of their personal attacks.
I've seen people banned and they get on their alt and go right back to spamming the same users in the same topic, trying just enough to stay under the radar to not be banned again.

I don't mind if people argue and lose their cool at times, but if thats their consistent contribution in every topic attacking others to the point that topics have to be locked each time thats a bit of a problem.

I think forum help abuse should be looked at too. If a person is causing/continuing the fight and reporting others based on their reponses to them they should get in trouble too. They are just creating more hidden posts and ruining the topic flow.

Off topic is to be expected those topics are a landmine, someone will be set off at one point its just a matter of when. But people seemed to want those discussions for a while now would be a shame to have to backtrack with buyers remorse. Don't think splitting the section will do much as its just gonna be the same posters with the same result, someone will lose it or spam and the topic will have to be locked.
I lean towards not really changing anything other than stopping the troll thread retaliating mocking others and their topics. If the vast majority wants those topics gone then so be it. But I wouldnt take it away if lots of the visitors there wanted to talk about those things.

Think there was an issue with harsh bans back in the day some people are still banned like a decade later for what is a small thing now. Kinda lean towards yearly bans for those that lose their cool for a bit, as some people mellow out and back off. But I do agree constant hostility if they get enough "strikes" weekly to go through 9 innings they deserve longer bans.

13-Apr-2018 02:25:32

Dong U Dead

Dong U Dead

Posts: 21,022Opal Posts by user Forum Profile RuneMetrics Profile
FiFi LaJolie said:
Dong, you really ought to remove all that you know. You've totally derailed the author's thread by turning into your personal complaint platform. It's a bit rude.

It's examples of continuous personal trolling that happens to me as shown above and other forumers within RSOF and these trolls/haters have on a number of occasions, more than I can count on my hand purposely trolled or hated on specific threads.<- This is factual, this is partly what Orcrist9 is discussing and wants removed.

I also want it removed and I also feel something needs to be done. How I discuss things is often though examples or my own experiences. But sadly the trolls/alts of the forum and there is a good handful or two of them have a great support network that back them up in which ever way needed <- it's seen time and time again on the forums and it needs to stop, something needs to be done.

And maybe Orcrist9 words will be listened too - but I do know what ever comes of Orcrist9 words my fate will never be fixed. I will keep trying though and maybe one person up there in the moderation team green, yellow or purple will listen - but my hopes if that happening is very slim.
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