NexusNine, on 01 March 2012 - 07:17 PM, said:
QueenTiye, on 01 March 2012 - 06:23 PM, said:
And, Nexus Nine, the answer to who decides is simple as pie. The moderators decide. That's what they are there for - to make those judgment calls.
No, it's really not that simple. If it were, we wouldn't have the AQG threads that call it out as often as we do. EI gave the membership a right to speak up and have a voice many years ago, which means the members can call out when they think the staff missed the mark. We also allow the members to actively participate in policy changes and speak up about it. Like I said, to even get this policy off the ground, who gets to decide?
Since we're actually discussing it here and now, and everyone can give their input, I'm not seeing that the membership is being shut out or silenced. Cardie asked that this not go off into wild speculation before something is even presented to the membership, but as I read it, no one said Staff would implement it and the rest of you could bugger off. Even some of the suggestions made for what "might" be included in this are not fixed in stone yet. In fact the only thing set in stone for the staff is to remove the hostility in OT and the subsequent hostility as members defend their right to actually be contemptuous or hostile. An OT discussion does not have to end up being a battle field each and every time.
Would you have the staff not look at this problem and just let it continue as is? Do you have any suggestions to offer for how we could achieve the goal without thread bootings? I can see you feel this will blow up sooner or later, and there are elements of the idea that all of us can find fault with, but do you have any ideas about how to achieve the goal of a free for all - free OT? Because we're all open to some ideas. What I don't think is helpful is just dismissing any changes out of hand [before you really know anything about the particulars] and not offering an idea or a suggestion for what might work better.
Members want to be involved. Well good. What would you do to bring OT more in line with the rest of the board? Can we agree that OT needs to find its way back to a more civil place for discussion? Don't worry about how we get their for the moment, do you think it's a worthwhile goal? How many members have we lost because of the burnout and negativity in OT? Both staff and members? How many people avoid the forum like the plague? Isn't there a valid reason for that avoidance? Isn't there something that could use improvement in OT? Isn't there?
My point is that if a member can be publicly sanctioned, then that member should be able publicly defend themselves. Not to mention the complaint may not even be started by the member sanctioned. And if we're going to allow friendly witnesses into the PM, then there really is no point not to make it public. Further, when these things are hidden from the membership, it doesn't allow for flaws to be pointed out, meaning a possibly flawed policy will continue to go unchecked. That's not something I want to see taken away from this membership.
This is a valid argument, but like not all trials are conducted in public, not all gripe threads must be public. Not every issue needs to be battled in AQG. It's actually become almost a blood sport in AQG. Moderator actions can be questioned and should be, but isn't there a line between questioning moderator actions for valid reasons and just harassing staff because a forum exists where you can do it? I see your point, and even with the WD's monitoring PM traffic, taking it all behind closed doors [from a members POV] can be unsettling to be sure. I'd agree that we don't have a shy or uninvolved membership and to cut them out would create pushback. So, your point is valid.
But, so is the point staff is trying to correct. In AQG threads staff can answer and the battle just continues on and on. Sometimes it is valid, but often it is just another place to have a fight with the moderators. There is a line where transparency strops being helpful to the membership and it just becomes more toxicity and more of the same kind of contempt that infects OT much of the time. And, since I know [because we've talked about it at some length you and I] that you feel that this is the mantle staff puts on when the join staff I'm not going to ask you if you have any suggestions.
Joining staff does have its cost. I've learned I can't even participate in my own forum as a member as much because I need to try and stay out of partisan threads. So, my favorite forum is no longer one where I can enjoy myself. That was a cost of being on staff. I know there are more. But joining staff isn't about being lynched every time you say something either. So, where is that line? Where is the line between what the membership needs to know and participate in and moderator lynchings? Just saying "we've always been able to gripe in AQG", doesn't mean there isn't a problem with public threads sometimes. And just because, from a membership POV, you want to continue to have public airings doesn't mean that the POV of staff isn't valid as well. It's not an either or situation.
You make good points, [and so do others], but staff has a point as well. Additionally, we've all been talking about forum reduction and trying to be inviting to new people. People who will join our community. But, if they visit OT or AQG what do they find? It is hostile. So, along with trying to bring OT and AQG around to the tone of the rest of the board, there is the goal of trying to make the community itself a more enjoyable place to visit and participate in.
So, what suggestions do members have. Involvement isn't just telling staff "that won't work" or WTH is going on". It's participation in the process. So, what are some suggestions?