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buzzinbee

[PMC] New possibilities for the moderator process

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This is going on the idea brought up on r/barneygale I think it could be beneficial for us to allow players to put forward their name for nomination, I know many staff members already would accept players to put their names forward however I feel if we make a thread stating that they could do this and just lay out some general guidelines to what we expect from moderators and state that if you are not made a moderator to not take it personally, I think it could be a step in the right direction. It would also combat the problem of players that are of mod material going under the radar for a long period of time. I would like to hear some feedback on this and would if possible hear some of the negative sides of this as there may be some ways in which we could combat them. Thanks.

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I had posted this in barney's post.  These are my feelings about this:

 

"   I am not opposed to this idea, however if something like this were to take place I would have a format that went something like the following:

1 Users would only be able to submit an application once every other round of voting

2 Applications would only be collected from the submissions once every 6-8 weeks to be voted upon. (please don't submit more than one in this time period)

3 User would have to write up a short essay (minimum of 1 paragraph) of why they would like to become a mod.

 

Again, these are just my personal thoughts and in no way reflect the views of nerd.nu   "

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I brought up a similar idea in this thread (https://nerd.nu/forum/index.php?/topic/1105-community-outreach-ideas/) but didn't much feedback besides cyotie pointing out that it would be better in the forum, I agree with this by the way. I would like to see this implemented as well or at least a post documenting the best way to go about bringing a name forward. 

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I like those ideas Cyotie, I'd add in that applicants must have been at the server for a minimum of say 2-3 months although I don't think a short essay would be necessary we could leave it as optional however i'd prefere to just have the fact that they are interested brought to light so we can keep an eye on them. Also i'd like to add into that list that applicants must be prepared to be rejected, applying does not guarantee a position  

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 I'd add in that applicants must have been at the server for a minimum of say 2-3 months although I don't think a short essay would be necessary

My theory behind the essay is, It doesn't have to be long,  It will show how much someone really wants to become staff (i.e. it requires at least some dedication to write an essay and will show that they are serious about wanting to help).  It will also give us less of the "Hey, I'd like to be a mod (and that's all I'm going to write)".  and lastly, and essay could show grammar and maturity levels, which I believe are important traits for staff to have since staff members are representitives of nerd.nu

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and lastly, and essay could show grammar and maturity levels, which I believe are important traits for staff to have since staff members are representitives of nerd.nu

Agreed it would be nice to see that they genuinely want the position however there are many cases where this may not be a good way to determine maturity such as if the player had dyslexia, they may not have very good grammar however they may still be very mature. I don't know I'd just say let's find another way to determine maturity.

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As I told a player who brought this up before the post in /r/barneygale: I think this would cause people who submit an application to fake the qualities that we look for in mods just to get the position. I like the way we do it, so that we find people who are genuinely mod material day in and day out.

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As I told a player who brought this up before the post in /r/barneygale: I think this would cause people who submit an application to fake the qualities that we look for in mods just to get the position. I like the way we do it, so that we find people who are genuinely mod material day in and day out.

Since I am the new guy, take what I say with a grain of salt, but yeah this was my concern too.  Anyone can really write a nice essay and seem very nice, but the players who really just build and dedicate a lot of time to the server can sometimes be the quiet ones too. Guess I will add though that if this was implemented I would at least want to see something like a detailed description of why they want to be a moderator, what they are like, etc.   

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From my experience I favor how mods are picked out now, where players assume they aren't going to be mods and just be themselves, and existing mods see their true® personalities.  That being said, my time zone coincides with the server's most frequent time zone, and I can see merit in having an actual application for mod as well, if nothing more than as a self-nomination for the staff.

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As I told a player who brought this up before the post in /r/barneygale: I think this would cause people who submit an application to fake the qualities that we look for in mods just to get the position. I like the way we do it, so that we find people who are genuinely mod material day in and day out.

I would not intend for people to be modded based on their application, what I am meaning is that if a player puts forward the fact that they are interested we then could keep an eye on them for a month or so and build up our own opinion on them. It would just be used as a tool to help us know who is interested and who isn't.

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Sorry I think I may have given the wrong impression, I am meaning make it public that we don't mind people expressing that they would like to be modded. We would then stick them in a brainstorm thread even if we were not too sure on them ourselves so others can voice their opinions. Most players feel that they are not allowed to express that which causes a lot of players to go under the radar for a long period of time, where as if they could tell us we then know at least they are interested and we could keep an eye on them to see for ourselves if they are mod material. I was not meaning for the players to make an application with the answer yeah you're in or nope sorry as a result.

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I started to write a response to this, and changed my opinion mid-way, so I have to re-write everything =)

I think in this case, we should cater to the player here, not the convenience of staff.  Us knowing who wants to be a moderator before we ask is so minor compared to what the player would go through.

I can't help but relate this to my own experience.  I played on these servers for two years (admittedly with a big hole of inactivity in the middle), and after I settled into the servers and considered them mine, I wanted to be a mod too.  If I had applied and been quietly turned down, I think it would have been worse to feel more 'directly' ignored than 'subtly' ignored, like the current system.  It did suck to see a list of mod noms without my name, but what's being proposed would have led to more bad feelings on my end.  We want people to feel as good and as welcome as possible on these servers.  I think we can ignore the the case were people do become mods, because that's sunshine and roses all around no matter what. 

I do think we should quietly drop the policy that "telling us that you want to be a mod is bad," and we should definitely delete the page at nerd.nu/applyformod, which screams of circlejerk, inside jokes, and is subtly powertripping.  It's not professional at all, which seems to be what we're trying to move toward. :)  We could replace it with a page outlining our position (or maybe even linking to this discussion), minus the text box and ponies.


g.
 

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gdavison you have hit the nail right on. I spent a long time after joining wanting to be mod but not wanting to ask in-case I pissed off the staff team. The nerd.nu/applyformod page is clearly a joke however we could just write on the page that if you really have the community at heart you can ask a mod/admin to add your name to a brainstorm. I feel a lot of people just enjoy the applyformod page so I wouldn't remove it just change it to show the player who to ask ect. Also I can't speak for everyone but I've only ever used that page for brand new players demanding op.

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I think in this case, we should cater to the player here, not the convenience of staff. 

 

 

I agree, however it does seem that in this case, the user base seems to want an application to become staff.  I feel that instead of just not giving them one, we just add something into the application that states something along the lines of "Not everyone who applies becomes staff, if you are one of these people do not let this dishearten you, instead ask what you might do to better yourself and possibly try again later."

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Sorry to drop the conversation here, I think this an important issue and I'm glad we're talking about it.

 

I agree, however it does seem that in this case, the user base seems to want an application to become staff.  I feel that instead of just not giving them one, we just add something into the application that states something along the lines of "Not everyone who applies becomes staff, if you are one of these people do not let this dishearten you, instead ask what you might do to better yourself and possibly try again later."

 

I agree they want it, and it pains me to admit that I think what's best for them isn't want they want.  If the decision is made to allow applications, I'd love to see the apply for mod page change into a lot less "we're the mods and we have the power" and more "we'd love to welcome responsible people to our team."

 

 

gdavison you have hit the nail right on. I spent a long time after joining wanting to be mod but not wanting to ask in-case I pissed off the staff team. The nerd.nu/applyformod page is clearly a joke however we could just write on the page that if you really have the community at heart you can ask a mod/admin to add your name to a brainstorm. I feel a lot of people just enjoy the applyformod page so I wouldn't remove it just change it to show the player who to ask ect. Also I can't speak for everyone but I've only ever used that page for brand new players demanding op.

 

Thanks buzzinbee.  As you may have guessed I'm really not a fan of the apply for mod page ;) -- it may be a joke but it's definitely got an outsiders-vs-insiders kind of vibe to it.  I hope the admins are discussing this elsewhere (I recently learned there was an "admin chat" section of the forums :) or if they're not then I hope more of y'all can chime in here.  If you guys want I can design a new page for mod applications.  I don't find web development to be much fun but I can do a single static page with a form =)

 

g.

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The applyformod page was pretty hilarious when we first rolled it out, but that was a relic of a different time. Back then, 99% of the people who asked for mod were trolls/griefers who were "totally from Planet Minecraft, we swear." So we trolled them right back.

 

Seeing as how we don't get many of those trolls these days, I agree we should make the page a bit more mature.

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I like the idea of having applications, and agree with Cyotie's points. This will be great for getting those helpful yet quiet players, and players who are online when fewer mods are present. People have said that the best candidates don't volunteer for the position, but that's really not always true.

 

We've been moving toward greater professionalism over the years - this is yet another great step in that direction.

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I'm not the biggest fan of mod applications. I still think we'll get the wrong people applying and the people who we want to have mods will just keep doing what they do. That being said there is definitely a problem with possible good mods slipping through the cracks. I was wondering if perhaps there was a more passive way of finding people. Perhaps some kind of flag associated with the user, maybe they can opt in/out of wanting to be a mod. I think anther thing we have to ask ourselves is if we want this to all be on us or if we want the community to have a larger say in the process. If we go with applications would it be possible to strip the names out and let users decide if they want that applicant to be a mod.

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We could combine applications with our current method. The problem with anonymous review is that self-submitted applications are invariably positive, when in reality we need a holistic look at a person. Things like personality and professionalism come through best during spontaneous interaction, whether it be in game or on subreddit or forums.

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I can't stand mod applications, I'm sorry. I've always liked our method of selecting someone who is naturally kind and friendly, not someone who is only kind and friendly to get a new level of authority.

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As much as I agree there would be frivolous applications, I don't think it would be too terrible to have some kind of way for people to submit their own names.  As I see it, the main problem that this would be solving would be the possibility of certain players who are otherwise qualified for modship, and would make very helpful additions, flying under the radar due to time zones, or a quiet manner, ect.  Self-nomination would be a way for some of that type of player to get their name into the nomination thread, and we could then try to interact with them more.  Yes, there would be derplications and power plays.  Those may well be the majority of submissions, and we would hopefully recognize them for what they are.  Allowing applications (or perhaps just self-nomination if we don't want to make this too official a process) would just be a way to cast a wider net for those who would do well on staff.

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I feel all we need to do is make it (culturally) acceptable for those desiring the mod position to send a PM to either a head admin or server admin outlining why they want to be/should be a mod, which is what we already do with players wanting to suggest someone else. We can then bring their name up in the suggestion thread as we already do, possibly alongside a quoting of their reasons. If they are received negatively by general consensus, a head admin, or an admin of the server that that player frequents, can then send them a PM outlining some of the concerns presented for why they were turned down. I don't see why there needs to be any more paperwork involved than that.

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I feel all we need to do is make it (culturally) acceptable for those desiring the mod position to send a PM to either a head admin or server admin outlining why they want to be/should be a mod, which is what we already do with players wanting to suggest someone else. We can then bring their name up in the suggestion thread as we already do, possibly alongside a quoting of their reasons. If they are received negatively by general consensus, a head admin, or an admin of the server that that player frequents, can then send them a PM outlining some of the concerns presented for why they were turned down. I don't see why there needs to be any more paperwork involved than that.

This is what I was going for however I'd say they could approach any staff member and we'd put their name in a thread for discussion.

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As a (I guess) old mod, I think the system has been getting better for mod noms and is fine the way it is. I don't want to be the typical minecraft server that has 11 year olds applying for mod, those kinds of servers annoy me. I'm starting to think nerd is losing it's originality and is becoming slightly typical, I know that would drive current members of the community away. I'm not a big fan of change, but this is definitely something that I'm not on board with. I think the best mod nom system was probably just after I was modded and they did the 2 weeks and we'll get back to you thing, 1 week for voting, 1 week for deciding.

 

I'd be more accepting towards Random's idea though.

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Well, we already have the nerd.nu/applyformod page. Why don't we update it to say what our actual process is for nominating moderators, and have the input box actually dump into a file that we can read the names from. (Not sure if it does that already or not, but we could set it up so we pay more attention to it.) Once we see a proper entry, we can start watching the player to determine how well they would do.

 

Note: I believe the upside to using that page is that we won't be announcing or letting on in any way that we are considering a player. All they do is put their name in, and after a few hours, they'll typically have forgotten that they did so. (At the very least, it won't be the first thing on their mind.) That way we can see them in their natural habitat without them expecting us to be watching.

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