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Confidence vote on the current moderators

Community Veteran
Posts: 26,341
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Registered: 10-04-2007

Confidence vote on the current moderators

There is a topic running where some criticism is being made of the moderators. I believe they are doing a first class job and would like to know how many people share this opinion.

The moderators are all volunteers who receive no benefits for the hours they put in. At times, such as now when the are many unhappy people around it is a very onerous job dealing with un-necessary trouble. For example, for some reason we frequently see people going to some lengths to cause offence by deliberately avoiding the filters.

I think that if were not for the sterling efforts of the moderators these forums would have descended in to total anarchy.

Do you agree with me?
jelv (a.k.a Spoon Whittler)
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40 REPLIES
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,886
Registered: 05-04-2007

Confidence vote on the current moderators

I have to agree with you John,

I have nothing but respect for the forum moderators.
The current state of PN's service issues, and the number of unhappy customers we have in this forum, means that if allowed to be unmoderated, the atmosphere would spiral downwards even further, as seen previously on another forum (Thinkbroadband.com)

It's also my personal perception that people here think that the moderation is heavy handed, because they are upset with what has happened with their service, and feel that their "right to free speech" is being impeded by said moderation, particularly when the posting is written whilst in a "emotional" state.

Nobody is trying to inhibit the free speech here, so long as the posting is constructive and based on fact, not heresay, and is written in a style that will not offend but get the point across.

People do need to understand that at the end of the day, the Moderators are human too, but also need to understand the medium we are using here - it is very easy to misinterpret a post if emoticons are not used, or the post is not very well written.

Something that had the intention of being well based and constructive could end up being percieved as totally unconstructive and inflammatory.

Just my opinion.
avalon
Grafter
Posts: 361
Registered: 05-04-2007

Confidence vote on the current moderators

Yes, often they are too lenient rather than too tough. There's an old saying "Give em an inch and they'll take a mile".

Anyone want to nominate me as a mod. :lol:
Community Veteran
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Confidence vote on the current moderators

If you are serious then yes I will nominate you. Smiley
Community Veteran
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Registered: 05-04-2007

Confidence vote on the current moderators

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Yes, often they are too lenient rather than too tough. There's an old saying "Give em an inch and they'll take a mile".

Anyone want to nominate me as a mod. :lol:


I will!!!!!

(sad that 2 mods offering to nominate you)
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Re: Confidence vote on the current moderators

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Do you agree with me?


I don't think this is the issue. The question is whether they should be subject to annual re-election, on the basis that most of them weren't elected by the "community" in the first place.
Community Veteran
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Confidence vote on the current moderators

If there were a queue of people wanting to volunteer to be moderators and a low level of confidence in the moderators I would agree that periodic re-election would be a good idea (say 1/3 of the moderators having to face re-election every 6 months to keep continuity).

But as we've seen, it has taken a lot of encouragement from John Essex to get nominations for the current round of elections. The current state of the forums has probably discouraged some people from having their name put forward. Also, from the voting so far it appears that there is a high level of confidence in the current moderators.

Whether the moderators should face periodic re-election is a separate issue - the question here is do the users of these forums have confidence in the current moderators?
jelv (a.k.a Spoon Whittler)
   Why I have left Plusnet (warning: long post!)   
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Community Veteran
Posts: 26,341
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Registered: 10-04-2007

Confidence vote on the current moderators

As it appears most people are voting without posting, could I ask that this poll be stickied for a few days to ensure that users who do not permanently live in here are given the opportunity to express their opinion.
jelv (a.k.a Spoon Whittler)
   Why I have left Plusnet (warning: long post!)   
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Community Veteran
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Confidence vote on the current moderators

Well it's a yes vote from me.

Yep I have no problems - I think sometimes it can be a difficult call. The majority of forum rules are fairly black and white but there is a large amount of discretion required particularly when addressing people's posting style and to try to keep a thread on topic with constructive comments.

Let's be honest, I am sure I don't need to tell you that PlusNet have had their problems and made mistakes - which turns up the mood and feeling on here making it even more of a challenge. I think the vast majority of heated posts are often due a problem existing over a period of time and that person becoming frustrated. Which in most cases I can understand.

So it's not exactly been the most relaxed atmosphere on here has it? Generally there isn't a problem, but I can see when things have to be kept in check.

Still would be a boring place otherwise, wouldn't it? Smiley

I think part of it is the mentality to only speak up when something is wrong, and to want an issue to be resolved ASAP. Human nature really. Even though processes have to be followed to determine the cause and like anything technical is often not an exact science (and I debug code for a living and fix software problems - so I know what diagnosing a technical problem is like!).

Of course the style of posting is also a matter of opinion, what one person says may offend another and sometimes not even intentionally - it is easy to become annoyed and bash out a rant without really thinking about it and then read it back and find it comes across differently that what you intend - sometimes more aggressive when that is not the intention. Sounds like how I make my posts really Smiley

I think the balance is about right and I am sure the mods would have a difference of opinion on when to take action - I do feel a consistent level is applied across the board, and that level is about right.

Although I've never been in trouble (yet) Wink Given some of my posts I am quite surprised to be honest. Sometimes I feel I may have overstepped the mark by a tiny tiny bit - I'd probably end up telling myself off if I were a mod confronted with some of my posts!

If you fancy someone with a proven track record of whinging (a lot) then feel free to nominate me Cheesy
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Confidence vote on the current moderators

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I don't think this is the issue. The question is whether they should be subject to annual re-election, on the basis that most of them weren't elected by the "community" in the first place.


From what I have read that isn't the issue either, the main point is the mods being underhand with sly tactics of PMing members threatening bans when a simple point to the forums rules is enough.

Onto the question here, there are some that I believe do a cracking job and are deserving of their status, and there are some that I think do it just for the title.

So I shall not cast my vote just yet - Smiley
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Confidence vote on the current moderators

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From what I have read that isn't the issue either, the main point is the mods being underhand with sly tactics of PMing members threatening bans when a simple point to the forums rules is enough.


Hmmm.... with words like "underhand" and "sly" it sounds like you've made up your mind already.

Moderators note by John (johnessex) quote BB code code fixed for you.
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Confidence vote on the current moderators

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From what I have read that isn't the issue either, the main point is the mods being underhand with sly tactics of PMing members threatening bans when a simple point to the forums rules is enough.


That's the way I understood it also. If the forums are to be seen as open and fair why the need to PM customers threating them that if they don't toe the line they will be banned. Do that in the open where every PlusBT customer can see what's happening and learn from it.

It needn't be a public telling off, just a pointer to the forum rules and a request that the customer adheres to them; politeness often achieves results that both parties can live with.

I agree that, on the whole, the mods do a great job and rarely get it wrong. It's just a shame that one or two mods operate behind the scenes and it seems to me that this method antagonises the customer more.

On balance, I prefer a totally transparent and democratic board. Smiley
Community Veteran
Posts: 5,878
Registered: 04-04-2007

Confidence vote on the current moderators

All of the moderators act in the same way, in acordance to guidelines we set out to help us moderate. Sometimes we disagree and an action I might make for example isn't necessarily what Tom would do. I'd imagine thier are posters past and present who hate me for some of the actions I've taken, similarly there are people who are giving other mods like Daniel and James a hard time now.

Generally all the moderators would have taken the same levels of action against posters, James and Daniel may have dealt with a few more lately because they have been about more. We're dealing with a forum full of emotion and varying posts. It's a difficult job sometimes and if people think they can do better or work with us to improve the system then they should put themselves forward for the vote.

It's interesting that Theattic should suggest re-elections, as he's pointed out we didn't go through the full voting task for the last 2 moderators since we had 2 positions and only 2 applicants, so how would re-elections work under the current general lack of interest from people?
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Confidence vote on the current moderators

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All of the moderators act in the same way, in acordance to guidelines we set out to help us moderate.

Is it possible to review the guidelines and make the forums more transparent?

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It's interesting that Theattic should suggest re-elections, as he's pointed out we didn't go through the full voting task for the last 2 moderators since we had 2 positions and only 2 applicants, so how would re-elections work under the current general lack of interest from people?


There is an election coming up I believe, perhaps all of the present mods could be included. If there is a lack of interest then so be it, on the other hand there is the high probability that the present mods will be given a mandate to continue in their present role.

Only a suggestion. Wink
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Confidence vote on the current moderators

As a further note Chris,

What would happen if there was to be re-elections say and the community ended up with a team of mods (and im not suggesting this is or would be the case but it always standas a chance) werent doing a fantastic job either and the forums remained the same or went furter into decline.
Would another re-election be suggested? Would we leave the forum the way it is? What would be the best cause of action?

As Chris has mentioned in the case of Dan and James there were 2 positions available and only 2 nominations. Even so I am still confident that if this had gone to the vote they would have received a very healthy cheer from the community and a pat on the back. Its just that the current state of peoples service is somewhat clouding peoples perception of the job they or I actually do which is causing a number of doubts to arise.
As for Chris, John and I we were in actual fact all elected on our merit and service to the community and were givent he community support in this.

As a wise parent once told me "We sometimes need to appear stern and strict for the good of your own interests".