What We Expect from our OT Members

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A while back, we posted the principles that we follow when moderating our forums. In short, that is what you can expect from us as we make our decisions. Now it’s time for us to identify what we expect out of our members.

We want our forums to be both informative and fun. As long as we pursue that goal together, our community will be vital and lively. But too often, there are differences of opinion regarding what is “informative” and “fun.” These differences of opinions can lead to conflict. Therefore, we have some principles that we expect our members to uphold.





Treat Others with Respect
Respect facilitates a high-quality community. Disrespect erodes community. When posting, respectful language is important.

Contact the Mods when Issues with Other Members Arise
If a member suspects that another member is guilty of something inappropriate, then contact the mods rather than addressing it yourself. We will look into it. We do not want to see members called out in the forums as being a “troll,” “spammer,” or anything else.

Writers are Responsible for What they Write
When we communicate, we are not just responsible for what we intend to say, but we are also partially responsible for what is heard. For example, we suggest being careful of the sarcasm. It doesn’t always translate well in writ. Humor isn’t funny when the butt of the joke isn’t laughing. When humor is perceived as flaming, then it is likely that we will conclude that it is flaming.

Members are Responsible for When They Push the Envelope
There will always be gray areas in forums communication. What one member sees as a bit over the line, another might say that it only nudges it. Usually, these gray areas are pretty recognizable as gray areas. If you are not sure whether a post is in bounds, we suggest not posting it.

Politics and Religion Need to be Avoided
Political discussions tend to erode and damage community. A while back, we asked whether OT wanted to allow mild political discussion. The idea didn’t receive enough community support to merit the change. Therefore, we do not allow political or religious topics as conversation in OT.

Members Need to Address Concerns Regarding Moderators and Moderation in an Appropriate Manner
If members have questions regarding moderator decisions, we want to hear them. The appropriate way to address your concerns is to send in a Support Ticket so that we can start a conversation. An inappropriate way to do it would be to press the issue through an OT thread or start a bashing thread, both of which are a form of forum disruption.

ZOMG! I Got a Timeout!
If ever a member receives a timeout and believes that the decision was made in error, the appropriate way to address the situation is through a Support Ticket. We are more than willing to revisit our decisions, and if there are concerns we want to hear them.

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I need a hug!

<kicks Zen>

Quit being a sissy.

I'm not permitted to make a general comment about Fox News in OT, but Finance posters permissibly sexually harass all women who post there & ask for "pics."

Thanks! This is positive and hopefully something good can come of it.

TheEgg said: I'm not permitted to make a general comment about Fox News in OT, but Finance posters permissibly sexually harass all women who post there & ask for "pics."Since this thread is specifically about OT, I'll address that part of your question.

We don't allow comments about Fox News when they attack it as a news service, because that is usually a subtle way of taking shots at a political stance. Such shots lead to retaliation, and the next thing we know we have shots being taken back and forth. Hence, such comments fall under political commentary.

Just so everyone knows, we are keeping this one tightly on topic. If you have a comment to add, please make sure it's relevant specifically to our expectations of OT members.

My opinion, to improve OT (specifically OT):

1. consistency in modding
2. off topic is off topic
3. ban the trolls, not outstanding members of the community
4. fun, not business. I know you're running a business, but remember what and why this community was started.

Note: these are the same things I posted about two years ago, but also included "give out more free swag", that's the only item which seemed to occur.

It's difficult to write a support ticket in reference to a deleted thread or post, 'cuz it's not there to reference.

You can't expect to eliminate social outcry when items are removed for simply questioning modification motives, in fact you turn it into an 'Us vs. Them' society...which won't last long.

Senturon said: It's difficult to write a support ticket in reference to a deleted thread or post, 'cuz it's not there to reference.

You can't expect to eliminate social outcry when items are removed for simply questioning modification motives, in fact you turn it into an 'Us vs. Them' society...which won't last long.


correct Senturon.

Shouldn't it be What We Expect from our OT "Community" Members? the community should expect from themselves, not to be legislated.

This will get censored because it questions the "Authority" and that is off topic from off topic supposedly.

Senturon said: It's difficult to write a support ticket in reference to a deleted thread or post, 'cuz it's not there to reference.Good point. When something happens that you can't reference specifically, if you mention the person and the context we should be able find the incident.

Senturon said: You can't expect to eliminate social outcry when items are removed for simply questioning modification motives, in fact you turn it into an 'Us vs. Them' society...which won't last long.I'm not positive with regards to whether you are talking about this thread or something else, but I'll assume you're talking about this thread and try to address this as best as I can.

We aren't trying to turn anything into an "us vs. them" scenario. The purpose of this thread is to state publicly our expectations. Think of it as the second part of the Modding Principles thread. First came principles you can expect us to follow, and second is the principles we expect our members to follow. Overall, the theme really comes down to "work and play well with each other." More specifically, it addresses some concerns we have with the way things too often happen in the forum.

Whether you are trying to turn it into an "us or them society" that is exactly what has happened.

FrugalFreak said: Senturon said: It's difficult to write a support ticket in reference to a deleted thread or post, 'cuz it's not there to reference.

You can't expect to eliminate social outcry when items are removed for simply questioning modification motives, in fact you turn it into an 'Us vs. Them' society...which won't last long.


correct Senturon.

Shouldn't it be What We Expect from our OT "Community" Members? the community should expect from themselves, not to be legislated. ... .
Good point. I think the key one is really the first one: "treat others with respect." It's really the foundation for the others. And I think it's fair for a community member to say to others, "I expect respect. We may not agree (or even like each other), but we can treat each other respectfully."

Sepo71 said: <kicks Zen>

Quit being a sissy.
the first two posts in this thread are prime examples of our normal OT community. is Zen offended? Was Sepo offended that Zen is overtly sensitive? Am I offended that Sepo is name-calling? NO.

Your orignial post reads like someone who just wandered into OP and freaked out, not the perception that comes from reading the board awhile & getting to know the interactions.

mewhojen said: Your orignial post reads like someone who just wandered into OP and freaked out, not the perception that comes from reading the board awhile & getting to know the interactions.Actually, it comes from our perceptions as moderators. We do read the boards and we do have a feel for the forum. We also field complaints and handle disputes that others are not aware of. The complaints and disputes identify areas that the community is weak in. We want to strengthen those areas, hence the expectations to guide us.

The expectations you mention are not unrealistic to most people. My only concern is that expectations be applied with some amount of consistency. You can't let person A slam person B, and then hold person B accountable for slamming person C.

There will always be those who want something different, perhaps a little looser. They may enjoy using sarcasm, or may want to be able to call a troll a troll, or may want to talk politics or religion. If they do, there are places on the web they can go where they can have this freedom.

That said, you also don't want to come across as having a 'police state' mentality. We are adults and we do want some amount of freedom.

EVERY single one of your points needs to be respected by FW staff too. A mod creating alts to jab at a long-time member probably breaks half those rules. OH yea, that was a JOKE! /rolls eyes/

Come on Bo. You can't have it both ways. Respect is a two way street, but ya'll have been blowing down the wrong way for a while now.

shopliftinginva said: EVERY single one of your points needs to be respected by FW staff too. A mod creating alts to jab at a long-time member probably breaks half those rules. OH yea, that was a JOKE! /rolls eyes/

Come on Bo. You can't have it both ways. Respect is a two way street, but ya'll have been blowing down the wrong way for a while now.
I agree, we need to be respectful as well.

Are you operating alone in this crusade? I saw your other thread in Finance and recently,

DevilMonkey said: Not every policy we have for managing the forums is written in stone, or anywhere. We can and will change our minds or make exceptions. You can write that one down now, though, because it's going to continue to happen. Forever and ever. Text

In other words, DM does whatever he feels is appropriate which may be different from any other mod. The "Modding Principles" thread is a generalized view of modding but the actual execution is "carte blanche". So, how can you place expectations on OT Members when we can't expect consistent modding behavior? Or did I just answer my own question?

momgoingbroke said: The expectations you mention are not unrealistic to most people. My only concern is that expectations be applied with some amount of consistency. You can't let person A slam person B, and then hold person B accountable for slamming person C.

There will always be those who want something different, perhaps a little looser. They may enjoy using sarcasm, or may want to be able to call a troll a troll, or may want to talk politics or religion. If they do, there are places on the web they can go where they can have this freedom.

That said, you also don't want to come across as having a 'police state' mentality. We are adults and we do want some amount of freedom.
We certainly need to be as consistent as possible. We would appreciate it if members would send us alerts when they see something out of place. Otherwise, consistency relies on us policing every post in OT.

We want our member to have as much freedom as possible. The key to what we're saying is in the first principle: respect. I believe that as long as members are actively trying to show respect to one another, then all will be well. Many in OT have relationships that make certain kinds of communication possible, which includes sarcasm. Without that relationship, certain behaviors don't fly. Personally, I like sarcasm. It's not a matter of whether sarcasm is good or bad. The question is whether sarcasm is appropriate for the current situation. When I don't think it is, then I find another way to express myself. Sarcasm is something to be careful with because it can be taken the wrong way. And this isn't just the case with sarcasm. It's relevant to all behavior. If it's not appropriate for the context or the relationship, then I need to find another way to do what I want to do, or I need to simply not do it at all.

qcumber98 said: Are you operating alone in this crusade? I saw your other thread in Finance and recently,

DevilMonkey said: Not every policy we have for managing the forums is written in stone, or anywhere. We can and will change our minds or make exceptions. You can write that one down now, though, because it's going to continue to happen. Forever and ever. Text

In other words, DM does whatever he feels is appropriate which may be different from any other mod. The "Modding Principles" thread is a generalized view of modding but the actual execution is "carte blanche". So, how can you place expectations on OT Members when we can't expect consistent modding behavior? Or did I just answer my own question?
It seems that I don't read what you read in DM's post. I don't see how that says he gets to do whatever he wants. He, too, follows the principles.

The principles we follow aren't really a form of carte blanche. Actually, I believe they do a pretty good job of guiding us and portraying how we approach things.

And I think I need to be a bit clearer here: for the most part, I think experienced OT members do a pretty good job of showing respect to each other. I don't think we do so well with people who are unfamiliar with the community. I also think we may have an issue with the treatment of the minority voice. These are areas we need to work on so that we can become a more open and welcoming community, and I believe that the principles will help guide us toward that.

Bo said:And I think I need to be a bit clearer here: for the most part, I think experienced OT members do a pretty good job of showing respect to each other. I don't think we do so well with people who are unfamiliar with the community. I also think we may have an issue with the treatment of the minority voice. These are areas we need to work on so that we can become a more open and welcoming community, and I believe that the principles will help guide us toward that.

Then wouldn't it be beneficial to everyone if new people we only allowed to post after lurking for awhile? I know this has been addressed time and time again and it goes nowhere.

Honestly, lately, it seems like we get asked what out opinions are only to have them disregarded, but it LOOKS like it's fair because we were "asked". It's that kind of passive agressive b.s. that has made me seriously consider moving on. The very fact that my opinion is not valued is enough to make me think that there is a forum somewhere that would appreciate the fact that while I do not have hundreds or thousands of $ in my CB account, what little money I do spend, I chose to spend through you.

I could have chosen to have friends or family send me the stuff that I have bought here, but I don't because until fairly recently, this was a forum I loved and valued. I don't post in any other forum but here, FS,GC and FW, but that's because those people are f'ing brutal and yet, that is allowed and actually even condoned. I don't get it.

As SLV stated, it's a two way street. I don't expect ya'll to run out and piss on my car tire when I get here, but a little respect and continuity would go a long way.

KatX coined the term "mob mentality" when referring to those of us who tried to protect this board from trolls and shit stirrers.

I am beginning to think that all of this nonsense is nothing more than "mod mentality".

I want to remind everyone that we're trying to keep this conversation focused. The purpose of this thread is to discuss our expectations of OT participation. Please keep comments relevant to that specific topic.

How can it get off topic when a moderator response is present in every other post?

Sepo71 said: Bo said:And I think I need to be a bit clearer here: for the most part, I think experienced OT members do a pretty good job of showing respect to each other. I don't think we do so well with people who are unfamiliar with the community. I also think we may have an issue with the treatment of the minority voice. These are areas we need to work on so that we can become a more open and welcoming community, and I believe that the principles will help guide us toward that.

Then wouldn't it be beneficial to everyone if new people we only allowed to post after lurking for awhile? I know this has been addressed time and time again and it goes nowhere.

Honestly, lately, it seems like we get asked what out opinions are only to have them disregarded, but it LOOKS like it's fair because we were "asked". It's that kind of passive agressive b.s. that has made me seriously consider moving on. The very fact that my opinion is not valued is enough to make me think that there is a forum somewhere that would appreciate the fact that while I do not have hundreds or thousands of $ in my CB account, what little money I do spend, I chose to spend through you.

I could have chosen to have friends or family send me the stuff that I have bought here, but I don't because until fairly recently, this was a forum I loved and valued. I don't post in any other forum but here, FS,GC and FW, but that's because those people are f'ing brutal and yet, that is allowed and actually even condoned. I don't get it.

As SLV stated, it's a two way street. I don't expect ya'll to run out and piss on my car tire when I get here, but a little respect and continuity would go a long way.

KatX coined the term "mob mentality" when referring to those of us who tried to protect this board from trolls and shit stirrers.

I am beginning to think that all of this nonsense is nothing more than "mod mentality".


exact point I made earlier BO, people see the "Corporate mentality" rather than the "community mentality". How about a poll asking if people are "happy with FW as is or NOT. Does FW Care to take that risk and have eyes opened?

Bo said:I want to remind everyone that we're trying to keep this conversation focused. The purpose of this thread is to discuss our expectations of OT participation. Please keep comments relevant to that specific topic
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Honestly, Bo. Isn't that a little f'ing redundant? We aren't idiots here. Nothing gets posted unless you approve it. @@

The Department of Redundancy Department will approve the approval of the above message.

What happens if expectations is not met?

OT is OT.
Here's a few suggestions: Only mod a thread if you receive an "alert mod" report.
Before members are allowed to view and/or post in OT, make them reach a certain criteria (such as having 50 substansitive posts on other boards in the forums). I don't mean posts like "thanks", "great post" or "got in"--I mean true post w/ substance. This would pertain to new members only.
Or make OT a pay per board. Even if it's $5/year. It weeds out the trolls and alts ID.
Mods have a thankless job, but they sometimes create more crap-stirring than needed.

Over-moderation is the problem, maybe add a drop down box we can select replies from?

Webkinz has this feature, never seen any fights over there......

MarilynKay said: Here's a few suggestions: Only mod a thread if you receive an "alert mod" report. [

Before members are allowed to view and/or post in OT, make them reach a certain criteria (such as having 50 substansitive posts on other boards in the forums). I don't mean posts like "thanks", "great post" or "got in"--I mean true post w/ substance. This would pertain to new members only.
Agree with mod alert idea

As for 50 posts elsewhere...Wouldn't this just garbage up other forums, ie, shift the inexperience elsewhere in the site?

momgoingbroke said: MarilynKay said: Here's a few suggestions: Only mod a thread if you receive an "alert mod" report. [

Before members are allowed to view and/or post in OT, make them reach a certain criteria (such as having 50 substansitive posts on other boards in the forums). I don't mean posts like "thanks", "great post" or "got in"--I mean true post w/ substance. This would pertain to new members only.
Agree with mod alert idea

As for 50 posts elsewhere...Wouldn't this just garbage up other forums, ie, shift the inexperience elsewhere in the site?


maybe....I don't know, I was just thinking out loud.
We're adults here (typically--a few kidlets have snuck in): we should be treated as such. And if the mods are randomly monitoring posts, then it becomes a purely subjective issue where the mod may put their personal feelings in pulling a thread, locking a thread or editing a post. If the mods would just act on mod alerts! Then the mods would get a feel for who's a trouble maker, who's a bitcher/moaner....

Yeah, I get my feelings hurt (no, not really, but in theory) on message boards, but I as an adult have the option to turn the damned computer off and walk away. Moderators should only step in there is a report, or if by IP tracking they can tell a person has an alt ID/multiple user accounts.

MarilynKay said: OT is OT.
Here's a few suggestions: Only mod a thread if you receive an "alert mod" report.
Before members are allowed to view and/or post in OT, make them reach a certain criteria (such as having 50 substansitive posts on other boards in the forums). I don't mean posts like "thanks", "great post" or "got in"--I mean true post w/ substance. This would pertain to new members only.
Or make OT a pay per board. Even if it's $5/year. It weeds out the trolls and alts ID.
Mods have a thankless job, but they sometimes create more crap-stirring than needed.
honestly, the $5/year idea sounds like a decent one. However, then you'll have trolls who feel 'entitled' to post just because they ponyed up the five bucks.

BrianGa said: MarilynKay said: OT is OT.
Here's a few suggestions: Only mod a thread if you receive an "alert mod" report.
Before members are allowed to view and/or post in OT, make them reach a certain criteria (such as having 50 substansitive posts on other boards in the forums). I don't mean posts like "thanks", "great post" or "got in"--I mean true post w/ substance. This would pertain to new members only.
Or make OT a pay per board. Even if it's $5/year. It weeds out the trolls and alts ID.
Mods have a thankless job, but they sometimes create more crap-stirring than needed.
honestly, the $5/year idea sounds like a decent one. However, then you'll have trolls who feel 'entitled' to post just because they ponyed up the five bucks.
How about accumulating $5 CB to post?

there are differences of opinion regarding what is “informative” and “fun.”

There are basically three types of writing:
1. Informative
2. Persuasive
3. Entertaining

If someone crosses the line tell them to read the rules.
if they do it again...remind them to read the rules.
On the third line crossing put their name on a list for all to see and then do what you deem necessary to keep FW the way YOUperceive it should be.....keep the kids out of FWOT. ....Yes the adults do get a little carried away sometimes but as far as I know FWOT has not been in any of the news stories ,m,.

qcumber98 said: Are you operating alone in this crusade? I saw your other thread in Finance and recently,DevilMonkey said: Not every policy we have for managing the forums is written in stone, or anywhere. We can and will change our minds or make exceptions. You can write that one down now, though, because it's going to continue to happen. Forever and ever. TextIn other words, DM does whatever he feels is appropriate which may be different from any other mod. The "Modding Principles" thread is a generalized view of modding but the actual execution is "carte blanche". So, how can you place expectations on OT Members when we can't expect consistent modding behavior? Or did I just answer my own question? That's one way to interpret it, but really it means I don't feel we are bound to the letter of any set of rules, policies, or guidelines. The principles are there, and they should guide our decisions. I wanted to introduce the caveat that we won't be chained to a policy or guideline which doesn't fit the situation at hand.

It's not the Magna Carta, it's a collection of principles explaining where we're coming from on our decisions. There are no bylaws to point to or interpret incorrectly, it's a simple list of mean things not to be done to other people. I think most people can read the list and say, "Yeah, this is pretty standard procedure for getting along with others." I also think most people wouldn't be surprised if they weren't welcome in places where they couldn't abide by a "Don't be jerks" policy.

We'll take stands, but we're not going to nail our feet to the floor.

So the mods are not bound to "any set of rules, policies, or guidelines" but the OT members are? It seems like the mods are trying limit the potential of some of these forums by constraining members to a code. Most of us try to do the right thing. Not everyone will agree with us which is why we can rate each other green or red so that we may express that view.

mewhojen said: Sepo71 said: <kicks Zen>

Quit being a sissy.
the first two posts in this thread are prime examples of our normal OT community. is Zen offended? Was Sepo offended that Zen is overtly sensitive? Am I offended that Sepo is name-calling? NO.

Your orignial post reads like someone who just wandered into OP and freaked out, not the perception that comes from reading the board awhile & getting to know the interactions.


We try to take that into account when we make decisions in OT. One thing we express to new mods is "read the forums, get to know the community, and it will help you with making decisions".

MarilynKay said: OT is OT.
Or make OT a pay per board. Even if it's $5/year. It weeds out the trolls and alts ID.


Lol, this is fatwallet!

If you guys are finally growing some balls then I am all for it. The only mod I have respected here is MVP because he doesn't try to be friends with the posters, he just enforces the rules. And I have been reprimanded more than a couple times by him. Enough of the touchy feely "we are all a community" stuff. Just make some rules and enforce them.

Skipping 12 Messages...
For the sake of keeping it succinct, I'll just say, "Faded Walrus" !



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