Advisory Council Update as of Nov. 30

Discussion in 'Communications' started by Jedi Greg Maddux, Nov 30, 2002.

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  1. Jedi Greg Maddux Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 3, 1999
    star 6
    **********************************
    *Advisory Council Update - as of Nov. 28*
    **********************************


      What will be covered....

      1. First Things First
      2. AC Standard Operating Procedures
      3. Spamming issues
      4. The effectiveness of a ban can only be measured...
      5. New AC additions?
      6. AC project?
      7. Point of discussion



    1. First Things First

    To start off on a high note, the AC would like to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving holiday weekend. And I would personally like to apologize for the tardiness of this update. :)

    In the AC, Jay has announced that due to school and work, he cannot actively contribute to the AC, and has generously offered his permanent AC position to an AC alumnus if need be, which would be up to the discretion of the next AC crew.

    2. AC Standard Operating Procedures

    Dark Lady Mara summed up Darth_AYBABTU's SOP nicely:

    We now have a draft of an official document detailing the number of AC members each term should have and what their rights and privileges are. There can be a maximum of 11 members - 8 rotating members and 3 long-term members - and up to 3 ex-mods at the discretion of each session of ACers. The document includes procedures for voting on day-to-day issues as well as more serious concerns like addition or removal of members. The current concensus seems to be that it should take at least a majority or perhaps a 2/3 vote to add or remove a member. We are also discussing whether it should only be the 8 rotating members who get votes or whether long-term members should be allowed to vote as well. Revisions are still in progress, and we should have a final copy ready to present in next week's update.

    3. Spamming issues

    We have discussed the very difficult issue of spamming, particularly concerning that of mods and others with authority. Most of the material isn't intended for regular users to read, and this is ultimately left to the discretion of the Mod Squad.

    However, this will also serve as this week's point of discussion.

    4. The effectiveness of a ban can only be measured...

    Again, YodaJeff came to the AC with the following question:

      How is a user supposed to be punished by a ban if they don't even log on during this period? Should we wait 24 hours until after the user attepts to log back in for the first time? Should we wait for a user to send an unban request before unbanning them?


    jp-30 illustrates his personal policy on this:

      What I tend to do is in the usernotes that accompany the ban, state that the person is not to be unbanned until an unban request comes in. That way you can gauge that the person understands why they were banned and if they seem to indicate the problem won't reoccur.

      Of course one should monitor one's own bannings for the unban request. And that way you can ensure the punishment has been for long enough when it does come in?


    5. New AC additions?

    With the definite departure of two AC members this term (not counting Darth_AYBABTU's new permanent position or YodaJeff's new mod position), the AC has debated as to whether these slots should be filled.

    Dark Lady Mara believes the AC should be left as it is:

    I'm not sure how much of a point there is in filling the spots with the term more than half over. Good candidates for next term will just be "wasted" on five weeks of this one.

    YodaJeff thinks it wouldn't hurt if ex-ACers would be used to fill these short slots until the next term starts, but the AC still hasn't come to a decision yet.

    6. AC project?

    Jedi Greg Maddux has thought up of an idea to decrease mod/member tensions, and possibly overall drama.

    The AC
  2. dArTh_wenley Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 10, 2001
    star 5

    Thanks for the update. :)

    Mods most certainly should think before they post - especially when they are posting topics.

    Mods are can be instantly recognised and therefore being watched and looked up too.

    It then makes sense that Mods can't just post any old topic.

    In an idea world, there should be no limit, as Mods should (and usually do) carry themselves responsibily.

    I'm not saying Mods can't have fun - but they shouldn't have too much fun if you get what I mean... :p

    Just a few random thoughts.... ;)
  3. Jay Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 1, 1998
    star 5
    Nice work, JGM. :)

    On the effectivness of a ban, that's rather hard to decide. When I was a kid and got sent to my room, it used to be a punishment, until I realized I had stuff in my room that could keep me entertained. Should I know that I had a period of time I couldn't post here, I'd do something else. A ban is only as useful as the banned makes it, as I'm sure you can tell by all the people that get banned again every week or month, etc. Therefore, making the ban start when someone tries to log in just makes it seem like more work than its worth.

    On the point of discussion, I think that anything a mod should definately be held to the same rules, etc. as any member, but also, in a way, more. The more, however, should be more of a self-imposed rule -- sort of a lead by example thing. If you think that if everyone posted like you do, would the JC be a better place or worse?
  4. VadersLaMent Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Apr 3, 2002
    star 9
    I'm not sure how you could define 'too much fun'. I do understand what you are saying but I would not impose some kind of limit for the time being, if for no better reason than there seems to be a bit of a slow down on all the boards for about the past month and a half.

    Maybe thats a good thing, redundant threads seem to be at a low, topics on the JCC are not vanishing to the 5 page by the end of a day, but still I would not impose some limit to posting topics for the time being.

    VLM's 2 cents. :)

    EDIT: Really it just popped in my head; Mods are members just like the rest of us. Why limit them at all? They should have as much freedom as anyone to post. :)

  5. Darth Guy Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 16, 2002
    star 10
    Good update.

    I know what you mean by mod spamming. I think the topic standards should be the same for mods and regular users. Mods shouldn't have any more or less topic posting rights than a regular user.
  6. Dark Lady Mara Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 19, 1999
    star 7
    What specifically do you think those rights should be?
  7. Darth Guy Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 16, 2002
    star 10
    No redundant, inappropriate, inflammatory, off-topic(with some exceptions), or any just-plain-stupid topics. (i.e. "LOL! Funny picture! LOL!")
  8. AmazingB Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jan 12, 2001
    star 7
    "What sort of topic limit should be imposed upon mods? Do you think there should be different topic posting standards between mods and members? Why or why not?"

    I don't think there should be any limit on anyone's posting. All that's needed is common sense. If you've started several threads in one day, wait a few days before starting any more. They'll be just as good then. I also don't think mods should be held to higher standards regarding the rules. There should be as little as possible to separate mods from the regular users.

    Amazing.
  9. Tellesto Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 7, 1999
    star 5
    We have discussed the very difficult issue of spamming, particularly concerning that of mods and others with authority. Most of the material isn't intended for regular users to read, and this is ultimately left to the discretion of the Mod Squad.

    Well, seeing as how the general population of the Jedi Council is based upon members, and the fact that the moderators directly effect the members, it should be available for regular users to read. Spam and general trolling was always an issue that came into the limelight concerning the board population, it was a common issue that many new and old members spoke out on and discussed solutions to. Therefore, to restrict choices and information upon moderator Spam (which has greater impact then troll Spam) would be to deny the user base the very information they need to make an accurate and educated effort to reform and improve the Jedi Council in this standpoint.

    Of course, I?ve never been a fan of moderator influenced restrictions and I still believe that the Administration as a whole is not as personally restricted and monitored as heavily as it should be. Yet, this is ultimately my stance on the matter: The Jedi Council?s own betterment can only be established at the information regarding the problem. Otherwise, you will simply have solutions from the members and Advisory Council that equate to little more then a shot in the dark.

    As far as former moderators serving on the Advisory Council goes, I also dislike that idea. Personally, I always saw the Advisory Council as the people voice the definitive opinion of the user-base at large. The Advisory Council was a group of regular members who were never moderators or members holding positions of power, they were for a lack of a better word, the ?peasants?. Through the Advisory Council the opinions of the membership could reach the moderators and administration staff, faster, and with more influence. To put former moderators, members who have been on the other side of the fence, inside the Advisory Council, could taint the viewpoints and directions of the group meant to ?police? the police.
  10. Gay-LenKenobi Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 20, 2000
    star 5
    I agree with everything Tellesto said. I don't understand why that kind of information is being restricted. Why shouldn't we be included in deciding guidelines for mod behavior?


    I share Tellesto's stance on former-mod's having a place in the AC and I have said it several times before. The Council was created to give common users a voice in policy decisions. It is supposed to represent the 80,000 members who have never been in a position to directly influence policy as admins. AC members are chosen to represent those people. There is not a large enough population of former-mods to necessitate 3 representatives. If they are going to add 3 new positions to the council, I think the entire JC would be best served if they were filled by people who better represent the community.
  11. KnightWriter Administrator Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 6, 2001
    star 8
    Gay-Len, former moderators offer their own perspective on issues, and are beneficial to the Advisory Council. I believe most or all AC members would agree to that.

    Tellesto, in short, what practical effect are you asking for?
  12. Tellesto Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 7, 1999
    star 5
    I believe most or all AC members would agree to that.

    With all due respect and in my humble opinion, I disagree with it, being a former AC member. I can't speak for the current membership, and I also cannot speak for the membership that held office while I was part of the Council...but I personally do not feel that it would be of the utmost good.

    In short

    Share the moderator information (that is held back) with the public, and then ask them what they would like to be done.


  13. KnightWriter Administrator Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 6, 2001
    star 8
    Share it in what form (as that's what I originally thought your main point was)? Just wanting to make sure I understand.

    I would note that each AC group is under no obligation to have former moderators in the Council, and that this group decided to bring them in themselves to bring their perspective and experience into discussions.
  14. Gay-LenKenobi Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 20, 2000
    star 5
    KW, I am not saying they don't offer opinions. I am saying that their opinions have probably already been offered. Whatever perspective they gained while being mods, I'm sure there are plenty of other mods can and do contribute the very same perspective/opinion.

    And whatever they have learned/experienced as regular members, I'm sure some of the rest of us 80,000 regulars could also share.

    Their perspectives, be it from the mod side or the reg side, are already represented in the AC. Plus, there is a much smaller pool to choose from for the 3 spots, just just about every former mod will probably get an offer to join the AC. The rest of us don't have anywhere near those odds. In that way, it's preferential treatment.

    I think if the AC wants a former mod to serve, they should pick them to fill one of the normal positions. I don't think they should be given special positions or picked just because of their status as former mods.
  15. Tellesto Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 7, 1999
    star 5
    Share it in text, tell them exactly what the Moderators are discussing in the private boards and what each individual participant to the discussion has said or denoted.

    If need be, simply post the complete discussion threads in the Communications forum, get the mod-discussions on this subject out there.

    -------------------------

    I think if the AC wants a former mod to serve, they should pick them to fill one of the normal positions. I don't think they should be given special positions or picked just because of their status as former mods.

    As far as I'm concerned, any and all of the edge the Advisory Council had (if it ever had any) is nearly gone. Putting moderators into positions within the Advisory Council, reforming the Advisory Council, establishing term limits upon the members of the Advisory Council...these are all policies and card-tricks devised to take the bite out of the Advisory Council. It's the only establishment that could directly affect the influence (and in some ways, prominence) of the Mod-Squad. Therefore, it seems to be limited quite a bit through reforms and former moderators in an effort to keep it from reforming the administration.
  16. YodaJeff Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Oct 18, 2001
    star 7
    "Share it in text, tell them exactly what the Moderators are discussing in the private boards and what each individual participant to the discussion has said or denoted.

    If need be, simply post the complete discussion threads in the Communications forum, get the mod-discussions on this subject out there.
    "

    There's a reason the forums are private. Moderators trust the AC with some information that shouldn't be shared with the regular users.

    And why is the issue of former-mods joining the AC an issue now, and not two months ago when it was first announced? :confused:
  17. KnightWriter Administrator Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 6, 2001
    star 8
    ]i]Whatever perspective they gained while being mods, I'm sure there are plenty of other mods can and do contribute the very same perspective/opinion[/i]

    I don't see how a current moderator could offer the same perspective as a former moderator, particularly two who have been inactive moderators as long as Dark Lady Mara and Yoda the All Powerful have.

    Their perspectives, be it from the mod side or the reg side, are already represented in the AC. Plus, there is a much smaller pool to choose from for the 3 spots, just just about every former mod will probably get an offer to join the AC. The rest of us don't have anywhere near those odds. In some ways, that is preferential treatment.


    One might say that everyone's views are represented in Communications, so why have an AC at all (as many have said before)? Instead, having former moderators in the AC allows their knowledge to be shared with other AC members who have requested their presence. I don't see a problem with that. If they were being forced upon the group, then there would be a problem.

    Share it in text, tell them exactly what the Moderators are discussing in the private boards and what each individual participant to the discussion has said or denoted.


    I completely disagree with that idea. The Mod Squad (and AC) are private for a reason, and there would be little point in keeping them private if everything that was said was open for all to read.
  18. farraday Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 27, 2000
    star 7
    Ex-Mods have no vote, all they can do is give their opinions and wait to see if the AC ignores them. Acess given solely at the discression of the AC, their job is not to represent anyone but themselves. They give their perspective and views which the AC might not have had the experience to see and which current mods may not express, for whatever reason.

    If you want to take a different view, an ex-mod would not feel constrained in expressing their opinion for fear of ruining their chance of becoming a mod.
  19. Tellesto Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 7, 1999
    star 5
    The Mod Squad (and AC) are private for a reason

    So tell me what that reason is, and how it relates to a moderator spam policy?
  20. farraday Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 27, 2000
    star 7
    Because the mdos refuse to discuss some things in public and some members feel hesitant about contacting mods with problems.
  21. KnightWriter Administrator Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 6, 2001
    star 8
    So tell me what that reason is?

    Would anything I say be different from what you've heard in the past? I know you must have debated this on several occasions in your time in the JC, and I can't imagine anything I say is going to be new.

    I believe the private forum protects people from having others read things that are not their business, allows moderators to speak freely on board issues and policy, and also allows board security matters to be discussed in private. The equivalent can also be said of the AC. When everyone's watching, the speak-freely factor goes down in a hurry.
  22. Dark Lady Mara Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 19, 1999
    star 7
    Whether ex-mods serve on each session of the Advisory Council is at the sole discretion of that term's AC members. If next term's incoming members want to cut us (me?) loose, so it shall be.
  23. YodaJeff Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Oct 18, 2001
    star 7
    What good would the AC be if it was public? It'd just be another version of Comms.
  24. Tellesto Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 7, 1999
    star 5
    Yes, I have heard this many times in the past, yet I was hoping to hear your exact opinion.

    If a moderator or Advisory Council member had a fear of revealing and putting their opinions and thoughts into the general organization of the Jedi Council, then why are they moderators or AC members? For that matter, does that mean that AC updates and Mod-Squad updates contain no real information, considering that many members of the board police are afraid to reveal and share their thoughts and opinions with the public they will affect? I can agree that privacy is indeed required in a number of cases, but this is one you're asking the public to comment upon. Is it really too much to share information on an issue that will have a great impact in the future?
  25. Dark Lady Mara Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 19, 1999
    star 7
    You people post too fast. :p

    So tell me what that reason is, and how it relates to a moderator spam policy?

    Because it would be really rotten if a concern were raised about one particular user or mod and the entire JC were privy to an invasive examination of that person's ups and downs. If such a thread cropped up in Comm, it would be drama and a witchhunt. The AC is sometimes forced to tend to such matters, but they should be done privately out of respect for the person being ripped apart.
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