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Question: Stronger topic moderation?
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Greg Stephens
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Joined: 14 Apr 2001
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Location: Los Angeles, California, USA

PostPosted: Sat Jan 17, 2004 2:29 pm    Post subject: Question: Stronger topic moderation? Reply with quote

Some recent threads have seemed to diverge from the topics quite wildly, so I'm wondering if there should be a more hands-on style of forum moderation where, when a topic starts to drift, the posts relating to an entirely other topic were split off into their own thread. I don't want to stilfe discussion of anything (short of flame wars), but would this be a good thing? Post some thoughts, please.

Edited to turn off "sticky" status.
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Last edited by Greg Stephens on Wed Jan 21, 2004 4:39 pm; edited 1 time in total
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kaos_de_moria
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Joined: 22 Aug 2003
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Location: Switzerland

PostPosted: Sat Jan 17, 2004 2:42 pm    Post subject: very difficult Reply with quote

i think good moderation is very difficult and needs alot of time. in cases as the last discussion it would be possible to put the political discussion in a seperate topic and to leave only MI related stuff in the right header. this would be helpful.

kaos
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Scott McCloud
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Joined: 23 May 2001
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 17, 2004 3:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think we're doing okay. Most of the topic drift in the last month was due to the incendiary (sp?) topics I injected into the comics themselves. Now that we're past that for the time being, I expect it'll settle down a bit.

Also, I kind of like to watch how discussions evolve. We're becoming a community again and communities are amusingly unpredictable. The scientist in me doesn't want to skew the results of the experiment.



As for flames, Greg and I can always inject gentle reminders here and there. Considering the intensity of emotions surrounding the war, I think we did pretty well!
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icepick
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Joined: 06 Jan 2004
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 17, 2004 8:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't think stronger moderation is needed. The thread flows like a big dinner party in New Jersey, careening here and there, but mostly good natured with tongue in cheek.
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Tim Mallos
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 18, 2004 12:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I really like strawberries too.

Tim
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zerofoks
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 18, 2004 6:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I just don't like to see good threads derailed (which has been happening a lot lately), that's all. Whether that can be achieved by appealing to the users (not likely), stronger moderation or something else I don't know.
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Christopher Lundgren
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 18, 2004 7:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If there's one thing that I've found a bit annoying recently, it's the fragmentation of threads.

When the threads began to derail, it seemed to be the reaction for those who wanted to either continue with the original topic or who were just in the mood for something different, to create a whole new thread. Then in turn the new thread would also go off on a tangent, thereby sprouting another new thread. Pretty soon it became a real hassle to keep up on everything.

On the other hand, it was an unprecidented situation, and it's probably safe to say that it was a fluke brought on by the intensity of the opinions being posted.
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Greg Stephens
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 19, 2004 12:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There are some good points both ways. I'll probably be adopting a subtle approach to the matter. (Any other comments are still welcome.)

Though I haven't been fond of "threaded" style message boards(see how Slashdot's comments work) over the "flat" style this one uses, I can see the advantages to them, in that they keep the conversations a bit more organized, even as the conversations develop organically.
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Cyborg Caveman
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 19, 2004 1:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Erik Larsen (the guy that does Savage Dragon) has a threaded style message board and seems happy with it. A lot of the long time posters there wouldn't give it up for the world. That said I kind of like the 'flat' boards too.

As to stronger moderation - - I don't think it's necessary. So everything isn't always on topic. No big deal. Real life conversations tend to range far and wide as well. People have been behaving themselves and if a few swords are crossed from time to time or if somebody's temper snaps it is usually only briefly and everyone are still friends afterward. Too much moderation stifles expression in my experience.

As with most things I think the people tend to police themselves pretty well and don't need too much help from up top.
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Connor Moran
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 19, 2004 1:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Threaded boards aren't so bad if you follow the whole time, but when you first come to a long conversation on one it is really daunting and hard to get through. The flat board seems a lot more friendly to a first time reader. In my opinion, at least.
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Greg Stephens
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 19, 2004 2:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What I don't like about most threaded boards is all the clicking that one has to do to read most of them. Many only allow you to read one post at a time, then you have to click to read the next. With short posts and the way speed on the 'net is variable (even with a fast connection), you often spend more time clicking and waiting than reading. Though many threaded boards have an option to view it in a "nested" format, which I find more readable, that can easily lead to a whole bunch of posts down the right edge of the browser, which is a little disadvantageous in that it's harder to read and causes more scrolling than is necessary.
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Scott McCloud
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 19, 2004 6:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Personally, I'd prefer *not* to change to a threaded style.

Slashdot always gives me a headache. I much prefer the flat style we're using. It's more welcoming to newcomers especially.
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Greg Stephens
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 19, 2004 7:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Not to worry- That's not going to change, at least. The PHPBB code that runs this forum doesn't support threaded discussions and the designers have said that future versions will continue to not support it. It wouldn't be too hard for me to code it myself, but that would be too much like work and make future upgrading more difficult for me.

I will be upgrading the code to version 2.2 when that's available, which will add a few new and improved features, but threading isn't one of them. There's no ETA on this- Likely this year.
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William G
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Joined: 15 Jan 2003
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 23, 2004 7:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think the modding philosophy should be "Crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and hear the lamentations of their women!"
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Greg Stephens
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 24, 2004 10:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm sending spam to the cornfield, but I like your idea, too.
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Amerigo
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 27, 2004 12:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I love that Conan speech. THAT is what Ah-nold needs for his Governor speeches as opposed to the Saturday Night live references...

See - already looking for a tangeant!

I am tangeant man, so of course I say leave it leave it leave it - Moderation is only necessary when people abuse a forum or it needs to be cleaned up in my mind(or if the admin has a different vision of where things should go, do not taunt or tease happy fun ball or the forum Gods).

Conversation may flow and meander but that's what makes it social, comfortable, and more interesting - you never know what you'll end up with. Regulating things to only their proper subject headings is an anal policy best left at work.
Besides - how will the spammers and flamers be able to pick up where they left off? Threads that get split may cause chaos, anarchy, cats and dogs living together - mass hysteria!...
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