Splitting 2-part episodes and political hijacks

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Varda
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Re: Splitting 2-part episodes and political hijacks

Postby Varda » Wed Nov 27, 2013 2:20 am

Wow... I'm curious, what happened in the off-topic subforum? O_o

And no offense meant at all by "public nuisances". :p I take the titles as a real compliment.
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Re: Splitting 2-part episodes and political hijacks

Postby ROU Killing Time » Wed Nov 27, 2013 3:31 am

We agreed to argue and found out how unpleasant we all could be. Mr.Tweedy had to come in and pick up all the pieces and re-establish decorum. Rumor has it that he left his position as Forum Czar to go forge peace in the middle east, but that appears to have been unfounded.
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Re: Splitting 2-part episodes and political hijacks

Postby tbaker2500 » Wed Nov 27, 2013 4:04 am

Re-org of the scattegories makes good sense, and it is planned. I've gotten a bit busy; please continue to offer suggestions. Anybody.

Arguing about things non-story and podcast related just didn't really work here. There are plenty of places to argue about stuff. This is a bit more of a walled garden.
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Re: Splitting 2-part episodes and political hijacks

Postby Varda » Wed Nov 27, 2013 4:34 am

Fortunately, our community has a workaround: you can say whatever you want to, provided you do it in 100-word or 100-character increments...

Hmm... Pad Thai: The Drabble! >:D
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Re: Splitting 2-part episodes and political hijacks

Postby tbaker2500 » Wed Nov 27, 2013 5:05 am

Varda wrote:Fortunately, our community has a workaround: you can say whatever you want to, provided you do it in 100-word or 100-character increments...


No… actually… that is where things blew up. We USED to have a section called "Post your political or adult twabbles here" to go along with the current "General Content" thread.
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Re: Splitting 2-part episodes and political hijacks

Postby Algernon Sydney is Dead » Wed Nov 27, 2013 5:49 am

tbaker2500 wrote:
Varda wrote:Fortunately, our community has a workaround: you can say whatever you want to, provided you do it in 100-word or 100-character increments...


No… actually… that is where things blew up. We USED to have a section called "Post your political or adult twabbles here" to go along with the current "General Content" thread.

The mistake was in practically asking for political and adult posts. (¿And then cramping my style? :roll: :) )

We still have, and people still will want to post, off-topic stuff. We need a place for it and a place where we can move chains that start to derail a thread (like has happened with the 303/304 feedback.

But don't call it "adult" or "political"; don't even mention that. Call it off topic and make clear that some level of civility is still required.

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Re: Splitting 2-part episodes and political hijacks

Postby tbaker2500 » Wed Nov 27, 2013 6:04 am

Word. I like it. On my list for this weekend.
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Re: Splitting 2-part episodes and political hijacks

Postby strawman » Wed Nov 27, 2013 1:20 pm

And let me just add that I am unrepentant.
I was born this way.

Isn't it the essence of creativity to be tangential? If we start with wasp larva that makes its way to an ant's brain to commandeer the ship, the idea soon becomes a piece about us being at the controls of a dying mother ship. As long as it's strictly weird, going off on a hijack is lots of fun for all... Until it goes somewhere you'd rather it hadn't.

[I really don't care for that exotic foods show that features a host who travels to exotic places to put crunchy live grubs in his mouth. I suppose if I were bulimic, I might find it helpful.]

At any rate, as ROU pointed out elsewhere, this is about different trajectories. Imagine having a forum discussing birth control, and Monty Python posting The Meaning of Life on it. Imagine that there the "Lurkers" are a bunch of Catholics who are sensitive and feel that a leg is being pulled at their expense.

Okay...wait a minute... I seem to be in danger of hijacking my own comment. Wouldn't the point be that if lurkers are hanging back from a discussion, then "adding branches to the tree" gives them additional places to land?

Let me just confess that I am serially guilty of engaging in this activity, and I appreciate being told when it has overstepped the community norms, but better a "tut tut, my boy" than being exiled to a foreign thread. (Moderation in the defense of creativity is no virtue! -That may not be the opinion proper to a Moderator, in which case I should be demoted to 'Lurker Leader' or some such.)

Unless Lurkers emerge from their spaceships so we can perform the necessary probes, we cannot know what keeps them silent.

If it is because alien beings repulse them, how did they end up here?
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Re: Splitting 2-part episodes and political hijacks

Postby Varda » Wed Nov 27, 2013 3:31 pm

strawman wrote:At any rate, as ROU pointed out elsewhere, this is about different trajectories. Imagine having a forum discussing birth control, and Monty Python posting The Meaning of Life on it. Imagine that there the "Lurkers" are a bunch of Catholics who are sensitive and feel that a leg is being pulled at their expense.

Okay...wait a minute... I seem to be in danger of hijacking my own comment. Wouldn't the point be that if lurkers are hanging back from a discussion, then "adding branches to the tree" gives them additional places to land?


Err... is this directed at me, since I'm the one who expressed concern about the potential effects of the original conversation on lurkers/new members?

If so... I get the point that it's not all that helpful to go making assumptions about a nebulous cloud of hypothetical people who may or may not be reading along. As I said originally, it was the convergence of 4 things that bothered me about the original thread-hijack. Remove 1 of the 4, and I probably wouldn't have thought twice about any of it.

I do find it problematic, though, when I see people with moderator titles being needlessly inflammatory in ways that don't make sense for a given community (meaning, if this were CakeEnthusiasts.com, the moderators might be open in their disdain for pie). This is true of any internet community. Keep in mind that "moderator" is universal internet-speak for "local sheriff who enforces the arbitrary rules of a site's subculture".

So if you enter a new town and see the police parking in front of fire hydrants, you can usually conclude either 1) It's not against the law to park in front of fire hydrants in this town, or 2) The police are corrupt, and allow themselves to break laws that they would punish the locals for breaking, or 3) The police have made a mistake and didn't see that hydrant there, and would gladly move the car if someone points it out.

So yes, it is especially problematic when it's the mods derailing threads with needlessly inflammatory remarks. From a lurker's perspective, does it mean that it's okay to be inflammatory and to hijack 'round here, or does it mean that the moderators know it's not okay, but don't care; or perhaps don't realize it's inflammatory at all? I think in this case, it was #3, and I do appreciate ASID splitting off the thread.

I don't expect you to be apologetic. Keep on keepin' on. In the same way, I'm not going to apologize either. While I've not been around terribly long, I care about this community too, want to see it thrive, and I hope it's somewhat helpful to share another perspective on stuff when it comes up. If it's unwelcome, please say so, and I'm happy to retreat back to the Drabbles forum from whence I came.
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Re: Splitting 2-part episodes and political hijacks

Postby strawman » Wed Nov 27, 2013 4:12 pm

I thought I acknowledged and agreed with your point about moderators?

I think I was made a moderator because someone once thought I was diplomatic in defusing some hot discussions. And then Mr. Tweedy got busy with other responsibilities.
But look at me: If you give me the choice of being a cop or the editor of Cracked Magazine, who do you think I would rather be?

Rereading my post, aside from that mod question, I don't see how it's not just humorous. Unless someone is offended by the idea that politicians belong in the MBDM competition. But I'm curious to know wherein I may have stepped on toes.

[Just FYI, I am quite sympathetic to the issue of healthcare. I've spent many years among the uninsured myself. This is where the trajectory concept is important.]
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Re: Splitting 2-part episodes and political hijacks

Postby tbaker2500 » Wed Nov 27, 2013 4:44 pm

Everybody loves everybody else. Got it.
Strawdude, If you do, in fact, prefer, I can change your rank and let you be free of responsibility. That being said, I really like having you helping out.

I think it is very important to split threads when they get too off topic. The people fully engaging in a conversation which is not related to the thread, prevents people interested in the original thread from posting. Not a hard feelings thing here, simply the right way to do it. Let both conversations happen!
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Re: Splitting 2-part episodes and political hijacks

Postby Varda » Wed Nov 27, 2013 4:46 pm

Strawman - now I see where you agreed with me about moderators. Honestly, I got a little lost in your post originally, since I couldn't tell if you were agreeing or disagreeing because you opened with that pretty strong "I am unrepentant" bit. No love lost, I hope.

As for my issues with the original exchange, I'll PM you. We have way sailed past this introvert's comfort zone for public discussion, and I am now beating a hasty retreat back into lurker-hood for a bit. :)
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Re: Splitting 2-part episodes and political hijacks

Postby tbaker2500 » Wed Nov 27, 2013 4:53 pm

Here's another idea- Varda, why don't you join the ranks of moderatorhood? Right now we have-
Bo- passive moderator (no offense, bro)
ASID- Unless you take a knife to me, I'm not going to ban you
Strawman- Let's discuss everything
Tom- Dudes, stay on topic and don't tread on other people's feelings
Varda- Catch things that upset newcomers and lurkers. Split topics and keep things fun.

What say?
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Re: Splitting 2-part episodes and political hijacks

Postby strawman » Wed Nov 27, 2013 4:58 pm

What makes it difficult to separate hijacks is there isn't any way to connect the branches back to the trunk. You either have a tree, or firewood.

So much of creativity is tangential. But remove the tangent from the curve, and it becomes just a line.

My preference is to be David Wong. I'm willing to surrender my badge and firearm. If there is a way to separate functions, I'm your willing servant.
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Re: Splitting 2-part episodes and political hijacks

Postby tbaker2500 » Wed Nov 27, 2013 6:23 pm

Hey, let's do this. I've changed your visible title to "member", cause, you know, you have one. But you still have moderation access. So you can spout humor and insight without looking like a cop, but you can come back into moderator duty if nobody else is. That give you the flexibility you are looking for?
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Re: Splitting 2-part episodes and political hijacks

Postby tbaker2500 » Wed Nov 27, 2013 6:24 pm

Also, I think you can successfully split topics, if you properly link to them in the original topic.
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Re: Splitting 2-part episodes and political hijacks

Postby strawman » Wed Nov 27, 2013 6:35 pm

:D = I like it!
But I already once was a Member. So shouldn't I now be a ReMember?
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Re: Splitting 2-part episodes and political hijacks

Postby Varda » Wed Nov 27, 2013 7:03 pm

Wow, Tom, that's really nice of you to offer. I'm flattered. :oops: Truth be told, I've never done anything like moderating before, though. Maybe we can discuss it a bit more via email after Thanksgiving? I'm interested, but I just want to make sure I know what I'm getting myself into so I don't over-commit myself.

And Strawman definitely needs a better title if he's going all Mod-incognito now. Hrm...
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Re: Splitting 2-part episodes and political hijacks

Postby Algernon Sydney is Dead » Wed Nov 27, 2013 10:42 pm

tbaker2500 wrote:Also, I think you can successfully split topics, if you properly link to them in the original topic.

The only reason I didn't link to this thread from the original is because I knew that all the concerned parties troll the whole forum and would catch it. I think history shows that that was a good guess. :wink:

For the later hijack (with a newbie participant), I did leave a note and a link.


strawman wrote:But I already once was a Member. So shouldn't I now be a ReMember?

Nope. DisMember is more appropriate. :twisted:

I don't like the idea of a stealth moderator here.
  1. A community needs a certain number of visible beat cops to remind them of their place instill confidence that issues can be addressed. The forum still has issues with a long lag while handling first-time posters, so it's even more important to refute the initial impression of an unattended site.
  2. This smacks of some of the privileges without the responsibility. You'd never know it from my posts but, believe it or not, I self censor 200% more since the forum labels me a "moderator".

That said, we're short handed so having Strawman be a twisted, half-breed abomination of user-type is probably better than being a whole moderator short. :)


Varda wrote:Truth be told, I've never done anything like moderating before, though. Maybe we can discuss it a bit more via email after Thanksgiving? I'm interested, but I just want to make sure I know what I'm getting myself into so I don't over-commit myself.

I'm sure you can figure out the technical aspects fairly quickly.

I don't blame anyone for hesitating to be a moderator, and I don't trust anyone who's eager to do it. Moderating takes a large emotional toll, especially in a "general public" arena like this one. Burnout is high, which you can see in the history of this forum's mods and their activity rates, but holds true in every site I've knowledge of.

It's tough trying to be fair -- especially to people whose values seem alien, or even detestable, to your own -- but it's absolutely required for a good community experience.

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Re: Splitting 2-part episodes and political hijacks

Postby Varda » Thu Nov 28, 2013 12:37 am

Maybe Strawman could take on some sort of Welcome Wagon title. Something that indicates he's forum staff, but not in charge of slapping wrists on most days. He can be the friendly neighborhood boozehound who's in good with all the cops because he gets thrown into the slammer to dry out every Saturday night. I hear he'll offer you a sip of whatever's in the brown sack if you ask nicely. :P

Algernon Sydney is Dead wrote:I don't blame anyone for hesitating to be a moderator, and I don't trust anyone who's eager to do it. Moderating takes a large emotional toll, especially in a "general public" arena like this one. Burnout is high, which you can see in the history of this forum's mods and their activity rates, but holds true in every site I've knowledge of.


Yeah, I can see that. I don't think anyone likes to be the "bad guy" even when it's called for, and I wouldn't classify myself as a highly assertive person (apparently I will be for the DC's sake, though... thus my title). But it's worthwhile if it makes the community more enjoyable. I'm trying to be realistic about my time commitments, though, especially since Escape Artists brought me on staff last month (not as mod).

I'll think about it, and bombard Tom with all my questions (and give y'all a chance to register any objections if need be). One way or another, it's an honor to be asked.
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