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Feedback for Staff Elections/Volunteering

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Hey Superstars.

 

We're looking for a bit of feedback from you regarding volunteering on AVEN. It appears that interest in volunteering with AVEN - whether it be for an elected position like Moderator/PT/DT or for our various vis/ed Teams like AVENues or the answering team - has been at an all time low. This culminated in the last moderator election where there were no interested candidates at all. We would like to try to address this issue before it becomes too much of a problem - therefore, we have some questions we hope you can take the time to answer. You don't need to answer all of them - only the ones you feel relevant to you. Thank you in advance for helping! :)

 

 

1. Are you currently interested in volunteering with AVEN? If so, for which teams?

 

2. Have you been interested in the past, but changed your mind? What changed your mind?

 

3. For those uninterested in volunteering, is there any particular reason that stands out for why you don't want to?

 

4. Do you feel there is enough information available to make an informed decision on whether volunteering is right for you?

 

5. Do you feel there could be anything improved about staff elections to make them more interesting/appealing?

 

6. Do you feel there could anything changed about the staff teams to make volunteering more interesting/appealing?

 

Special question for former staff/volunteers - What made you want to volunteer originally?

 

Road - posting on behalf of the Admod Team

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.Lia

ex-admod perspective:

the bureaucracy in the back room makes it impossible to implement any sort of anything. you need a majority approval for most things, and a lot of the time, team members won't even post a thread like this without approval from other admods. there is a persistent fear of stepping just a toe out of line, because if you do, you could be discussed for code of conduct or rules breach. and because the tos and coc has become so convoluted (or maybe it was always that way and the way admods now handle reports has become convoluted), you never know where that line is - there is no hard line, because it was designed that way. in my first round as admod, i admit that i didn't give a lot of credence to members who said "the tos is too wishy washy" because admods were generally much more consistent in their rulings and discussions. my second time around, for the first half of it, was somewhat the same. then...not so much. 

 

admods don't utilize nudges and editing posts the way they were meant to. see a newbie call someone a troll? then, they could get a warning if a new mod brings it to the back, but someone more seasoned who was on the team a few years ago would privately pm the member to explain why troll calling is problematic, edit the post, and log it. everything has now become a team discussion. nudges are sent up to a week after the post was made, which defeats the purpose of having the nudges in the first place. 

 

an admod could decide to post a thread asking for feedback, or opinions, and they could then receive a pm from one or more team members asking why they did that and why they shouldn't have done that. 

 

personal perspective: there's a huge song and dance that admods are currently overworked, and they have therefore set aside duties for entire brand new teams like the tt...only for them to have nothing to do at all. so they get bored, and they move on, and then there's no one else in the pool of ex-admods who are willing to take on that role. and part of this goes back to the bureaucracy thing, where they can't really implement anything without input, say-so, and/or approval from the admod team...who rarely take an interest in anything, anyway. it may have changed since i left, but when i was an admod, participation in even disciplinary threads was at an all time low. people had to beg others to participate in any sort of discussion, and even then there were policy threads that would get a handful of responses in the first 24h, and then die a horrible, painful, silent death only to be revived months later asking where we stood on the issue. 

 

there's no incentive to join the admods in particular (i've never been pt or dt so i don't have an opinion on those teams), or the tt. you're helping the community? but how? by sending out warnings that sometimes take up to a week or even 10 days to send? what good does that do anyone? by that time, the situation is done and over and forgotten and now the only thing to show for anything is a pissed off member and a post that still remains, unedited, on the open board for the world to see and newer members to copy behavior of. 

 

resignation policy additions and interpretation of tos invalidation clause have been "in discussion" since at least july. use of moderator discretion, long term suspensions, and changing the warning system have been in discussion since september. length of warnings, treating all warnings the same, warnings after nudge for the same behavior, and changes to nudges have been tabled since september. because there's no transparency with these types of discussions, all members see is static non-movement. 

 

so yeah. wall of text with bad formatting, but my word vomit post of the day (week. month. year.). 

 

tldr; there's no incentive, personal or otherwise, to join.

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Chihiro
1 hour ago, Road said:

1. Are you currently interested in volunteering with AVEN? If so, for which teams?

 

2. Have you been interested in the past, but changed your mind? What changed your mind?

I was interested once, when I was naive. Even ran for an election. And then shit happened and I came to know horror stories of how it actually works in the backroom.

1) I was given a vague explanation for removal from election. The one or two nudges that I have received were have been on point and have clearly explained what I said and why I was wrong.

2) They made up a rule about AVEN, and said I was violating that. I still don't see that rule mentioned anywhere on AVEN.

3) An admod baited me into violating the said 'made up' rule. I asked them a simple yes or no question. Instead of answering a yes or no, they asked me details about other AVENites. And when I gave those details, they said I violated AVEN rule.

4) I wasn't allowed to contest the made up rule or do anything about it.

 

1 hour ago, Road said:

4. Do you feel there is enough information available to make an informed decision on whether volunteering is right for you?

No. As I have explained above, the team comes up with random AVEN rules on the spot to remove people they do not like on Admod team.

The team focuses heavily on "this forum is easy to mod because there is no drama" to attract volunteers, but do not explain other aspects of modding like the bureaucracy that comes with the position

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Janus DarkFox
39 minutes ago, .Lia said:

ex-admod perspective:

the bureaucracy in the back room makes it impossible to implement any sort of anything. you need a majority approval for most things, and a lot of the time, team members won't even post a thread like this without approval from other admods. there is a persistent fear of stepping just a toe out of line, because if you do, you could be discussed for code of conduct or rules breach. and because the tos and coc has become so convoluted (or maybe it was always that way and the way admods now handle reports has become convoluted), you never know where that line is - there is no hard line, because it was designed that way. in my first round as admod, i admit that i didn't give a lot of credence to members who said "the tos is too wishy washy" because admods were generally much more consistent in their rulings and discussions. my second time around, for the first half of it, was somewhat the same. then...not so much. 

 

admods don't utilize nudges and editing posts the way they were meant to. see a newbie call someone a troll? then, they could get a warning if a new mod brings it to the back, but someone more seasoned who was on the team a few years ago would privately pm the member to explain why troll calling is problematic, edit the post, and log it. everything has now become a team discussion. nudges are sent up to a week after the post was made, which defeats the purpose of having the nudges in the first place. 

 

an admod could decide to post a thread asking for feedback, or opinions, and they could then receive a pm from one or more team members asking why they did that and why they shouldn't have done that. 

 

personal perspective: there's a huge song and dance that admods are currently overworked, and they have therefore set aside duties for entire brand new teams like the tt...only for them to have nothing to do at all. so they get bored, and they move on, and then there's no one else in the pool of ex-admods who are willing to take on that role. and part of this goes back to the bureaucracy thing, where they can't really implement anything without input, say-so, and/or approval from the admod team...who rarely take an interest in anything, anyway. it may have changed since i left, but when i was an admod, participation in even disciplinary threads was at an all time low. people had to beg others to participate in any sort of discussion, and even then there were policy threads that would get a handful of responses in the first 24h, and then die a horrible, painful, silent death only to be revived months later asking where we stood on the issue. 

 

there's no incentive to join the admods in particular (i've never been pt or dt so i don't have an opinion on those teams), or the tt. you're helping the community? but how? by sending out warnings that sometimes take up to a week or even 10 days to send? what good does that do anyone? by that time, the situation is done and over and forgotten and now the only thing to show for anything is a pissed off member and a post that still remains, unedited, on the open board for the world to see and newer members to copy behavior of. 

 

resignation policy additions and interpretation of tos invalidation clause have been "in discussion" since at least july. use of moderator discretion, long term suspensions, and changing the warning system have been in discussion since september. length of warnings, treating all warnings the same, warnings after nudge for the same behavior, and changes to nudges have been tabled since september. because there's no transparency with these types of discussions, all members see is static non-movement. 

 

so yeah. wall of text with bad formatting, but my word vomit post of the day (week. month. year.). 

 

tldr; there's no incentive, personal or otherwise, to join.

In your perspectives, what needs to be put in place to help along and add incentives?

 

theres policy discussion on Policy Discussion Time-limits so there is some development in that area.

 

Whats it like as a Mod and an Admin? Any other differences being red other than green? Any advice for any members looking at becoming admin red?

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Chihiro
1 hour ago, Road said:

5. Do you feel there could be anything improved about staff elections to make them more interesting/appealing?

 

6. Do you feel there could anything changed about the staff teams to make volunteering more interesting/appealing?

 

Transparency.

1) When someone running for admod gets removed, they should be allowed to make the information public. If my post above this gets removed, then it again shows how you all are bent on hiding the truth. Or the dirt. I vaguely said something about it in an election thread and my post was promptly removed. Not because it violated anything I said because I got no nudges or warnings.

2) When an admod gets removed for whatever reason, they should have the freedom to share with AVEN why. If they want to. Its their disciplinary action, so they should be able to share it if they want to. It tells people what goes on in the backroom. If I knew, I would never have volunteered.
3) When admods voluntarily leave the position, it would be nice to know why. Not mandatory, but it helps in building trust from the community. Similar to how one sends an email to the team members IRL when they leave the company.

I care about certain admods (even though I never interact with them) and admire them for doing their job. When they leave with no reasons, it brings up a lot of questions in my mind.

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FaerieFate
14 minutes ago, Janus DarkFox said:

theres policy discussion on Policy Discussion Time-limits so there is some development in that area.

Tabled. And the fact that we need a policy discussion on the fact that policy discussions are taking too long is ironic.

 

@.Lia since I don't feel like quoting your entire post. You asked, "How can we benefit AVEN if all we're doing is handing out disciplinary action?" Well, I can't speak for everyone else, but there are resources that I have utilized as a mod that have allowed me to benefit AVEN beyond my standard mod duties. Namely, I've got an area where I can draft long threads that help inform users about (a)sexuality along with a team I can pester for input on it (Which is how my Help Info thread in Q&A came to be way back in the day). I am working on a few surprises as of current using that resource too. I'm excited to show everyone what comes of that :) I've also got a couple of awesome team members that I don't have to pester for help, they've just volunteered.

 

So, ideally, admods can be more than just handing out warnings and talking about policy if you let it be more than that. I know I haven't worked on anything as big as the Helpful Info thread since the Helpful Info thread, but that is a possibility, if you want it to be. There are staff members that have done A LOT with that resource, though obviously not everyone does.

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FaerieFate
19 minutes ago, Chihiro said:

3) When admods voluntarily leave the position, it would be nice to know why. Not mandatory, but it helps in building trust from the community. Similar to how one sends an email to the team members IRL when they leave the company.

I care about certain admods (even though I never interact with them) and admire them for doing their job. When they leave with no reasons, it brings up a lot of questions in my mind.

I won't talk about what happened in your election, because I obviously wasn't around at the time (I think I was running against you?) Anyways. I will talk on this point for now. A lot of staff members leave for personal reasons. I've had to leave because of my own health. Now, I won't be like, "I'm the best mod, and everyone admires me! Aren't I great!" I wouldn't assume that I'm a mod that people admire that leaves. However, when I had to leave for health reasons, I wasn't going to be telling people that. So... I guess you can't always assume there's a "why" that occurred in admods. Sometimes they have personal problems in their life so they can't give that time to AVEN anymore (I've seen it a few times)

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FaerieFate
33 minutes ago, Chihiro said:

I was interested once, when I was naive. Even ran for an election. And then shit happened and I came to know horror stories of how it actually works in the backroom.

1) I was given a vague explanation for removal from election. The one or two nudges that I have received were have been on point and have clearly explained what I said and why I was wrong.

2) They made up a rule about AVEN, and said I was violating that. I still don't see that rule mentioned anywhere on AVEN.

3) An admod baited me into violating the said 'made up' rule. I asked them a simple yes or no question. Instead of answering a yes or no, they asked me details about other AVENites. And when I gave those details, they said I violated AVEN rule.

4) I wasn't allowed to contest the made up rule or do anything about it.

 

No. As I have explained above, the team comes up with random AVEN rules on the spot to remove people they do not like on Admod team.

The team focuses heavily on "this forum is easy to mod because there is no drama" to attract volunteers, but do not explain other aspects of modding like the bureaucracy that comes with the position

I think I looked at what happened after I was modded. Feel free to PM me if you have questions. Now, obviously I wasn't around when it happened, but I can at least answer some questions.

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KYON.

I was a mod for about four/five months two years ago. 
 

I didn’t mind the experience overall. It was fairly well structured and I didn’t see any real drama/excitement. I’d do it again TBH. 
 

I want nothing to do with elections though. The whole thing is a massive sideshow and a waste of time, where people just have to think of ways to reword everything that got said in every other election ever. I ran in three of them and absolutely hated them by the end. Hated!
 

You’re trying to find a JFF mod, not a senator. 

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.Lia
1 hour ago, Janus DarkFox said:

In your perspectives, what needs to be put in place to help along and add incentives?

 

theres policy discussion on Policy Discussion Time-limits so there is some development in that area.

 

Whats it like as a Mod and an Admin? Any other differences being red other than green? Any advice for any members looking at becoming admin red?

the incentives i mentioned are more about moving shit along in the back room and getting rid a lot of the red tape that exists there. admods has largely operated the same way since the beginning, "because it's always been that way". 

 

i enjoy being an admin, because i like working within the acp but largely, being an admin is boring. you don't do any of the daily tasks that mods do, the tasks that you are assigned are largely done inside of just an hour or two a week, and even then your role isn't always clearly defined (see: Amcan's role for the first however many years she was an admin).

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Kimmie.

One word: insight! 

As long as the backroom is a thing people will suspicious. 

And as I have said before I will not run because i don't want power over others. And yes I count knowledge that regular members don't have as power. 

 

2. I have been interested but then i read some old threads about disciplinary actions talk and what I read there is something I don't want to be a part of.  To talk about what disciplinary actions someone will get without them having a chance to defend themselves live feels wrong. 

If it was possible to be a mod without having to engage in that i could be interested. 

And I guess it would be impossible to let the member that is up for disciplinary actions take part in the discussion because of safety reasons. 

 

4/5 those things i have suggested are apparently not possible because of member safety.

 

And another reason to why i am not running is if I get the job and quickly realize that it is not for me then i have wasted 3 weeks of time for the team and put job on others unnecessary. 

 

And my guess why no one ran last time is because it has been so many election lately that people are starting to get suspicious on what is going on in the backroom. 

 

But I have been thinking of it and I might be able to give it a try.

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Grimalkin

Having been a moderator on forums in the past, I can honestly say: I don't want to do it because people hate you. 

 

They do. They hate you when you give them warnings. They take issue when you enforce the rules. Heaven forbid you ever delete something. 

 

Moderating is a thankless job. Yes, you have moderators who are just plain bad, and yes, people should speak out against them when they are... but I've been privy to a lot of issues people had with moderators and in a lot of cases the mods were right, either objectively or just plain morally. But everyone's the hero in their own head, and nobody likes being told that they're wrong. It sucks. 

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Cheshire-Cat
2 hours ago, Chihiro said:

Transparency.

1) When someone running for admod gets removed, they should be allowed to make the information public. If my post above this gets removed, then it again shows how you all are bent on hiding the truth. Or the dirt. I vaguely said something about it in an election thread and my post was promptly removed. Not because it violated anything I said because I got no nudges or warnings.

2) When an admod gets removed for whatever reason, they should have the freedom to share with AVEN why. If they want to. Its their disciplinary action, so they should be able to share it if they want to. It tells people what goes on in the backroom. If I knew, I would never have volunteered.
3) When admods voluntarily leave the position, it would be nice to know why. Not mandatory, but it helps in building trust from the community. Similar to how one sends an email to the team members IRL when they leave the company.

I care about certain admods (even though I never interact with them) and admire them for doing their job. When they leave with no reasons, it brings up a lot of questions in my mind.

Members are welcome to share any disciplinary action they receive if they choose. Theres no ban on it. 

 

Admod disciplinary threads are declassed in the same way as normal admod threads.

 

Admod resignation threads are unmovable unless the admod gives permission as they can include quite personal reasons, however, if they want to tell the forum why they're stepping down they can do.

 

 

Part of the reason we have declass is for greater transparency. Although we're only up to 2016 members can request early declass of disciplinary threads involving them from 3 months after the event (however if it also involves another member that member could refuse early declass). They can also choose whether or not they wish for their names to be redacted in declassed threadsamd we will PM members to ask their preference if they have been active in the past year.

 

 

 

I haven't always agreed with the actions that have been taken in the threads I declass, but then not everyone will always agree. I do think there maybe should be a bit more autonomy in admods rather than so many things having to go through a vote and taking forever. I also think the member concerned should be given a chance to defend their post prior to being given a warn, and nudges can sometimes look rather too formal, but that's a different story.

 

As for PT and DT, I would probably say its lack of awareness from the membership at large of what we actually do that my put them off running. Maybe for admod/DT/PT elections a member of the team, or the previous post holder, could write a little bio for the position so people can learn a bit more about it, and make it a bit more personalised that a load of official bumph.

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nameinagame

So as a current mod, here are some immediate thoughts and raw opinions.

 

I found the whole election process excessive and long for the position. Especially as I was the only one running. I'm not sure how you would fix it, but it's just something I want to highlight. It was weeks of stress as I felt I needed to devote my full attention to AVEN during it and craft detailed and perfect responses to all of the questions. (if I hadn't got the position, I think the experience of the election would have put me off running again for a long time.)

 

Being an admod you can get hate. Some messages you receive are just raw anger with no respect, and there are some people who appear to believe we do this for a job and not that we are living full lives outside of AVEN and devoting time to the community through our choice. It would be really nice if we got more respect.

 

It also feels like for every 99 good decisions we make, we sometimes do make that 1 poor decision, and the members affected by that can hold long-term grudges against the admods and can be very vocal about it (which affects other member's perceptions of the team). Almost all of our good work goes unnoticed :( and members can be slow to change their opinions of us even though we are always improving ourselves. Mistakes are reviewed in detail and we do learn from them. Given how complex interactions are on AVEN, it is impossible for us to make perfect decisions every time.

 

(Please do challenge our decisions if you believe they are wrong. The best way to help us improve is to let us know we have made a mistake, so we can see it ourselves and learn from it. Everyone is welcome to PM myself or another Admod if they have had any issues, or post in Site Comments. These will, with your permission, be raised with the team.)

 

The backroom is pretty good imo. Everyone listens to each other, there is a lot of respect, and we follow processes to keep things as consistent as possible (although that can come at the cost of speed; there's a trade-off here). I have heard the stories of times when it wasn't so good, and I do believe these stories, but what I have seen over the past 6 months since becoming mod has been really good.

 

I think the backroom can be a little bit of a black box to members, and I would like it to be more transparent. I think transparency would help members understand our decisions and see all the positive work we do. It's hard to think how this could be improved though (any thoughts would be good!). Most threads get declassed (made visible to everyone), and this is really good, but often there is so much delay in that that by the time they are declassed there is little reason to read them - I feel most of them are never even read by anyone. I'm sorry, but three year old threads just aren't relevant anymore. I would like to see newer threads prioritised and not lost in the tide of declassed threads, and for the team to ignore older threads unless they feel declassing them contributes significantly to the community. This is just my opinion though and I appreciate there are reasons why it is done the way it currently is.

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.Lia
18 minutes ago, Cheshire-Cat said:

Members are welcome to share any disciplinary action they receive if they choose. Theres no ban on it. 

 

Admod disciplinary threads are declassed in the same way as normal admod threads.

 

Admod resignation threads are unmovable unless the admod gives permission as they can include quite personal reasons, however, if they want to tell the forum why they're stepping down they can do.

 

 

Part of the reason we have declass is for greater transparency. Although we're only up to 2016 members can request early declass of disciplinary threads involving them from 3 months after the event (however if it also involves another member that member could refuse early declass). They can also choose whether or not they wish for their names to be redacted in declassed threadsamd we will PM members to ask their preference if they have been active in the past year.

 

 

 

I haven't always agreed with the actions that have been taken in the threads I declass, but then not everyone will always agree. I do think there maybe should be a bit more autonomy in admods rather than so many things having to go through a vote and taking forever. I also think the member concerned should be given a chance to defend their post prior to being given a warn, and nudges can sometimes look rather too formal, but that's a different story.

 

As for PT and DT, I would probably say its lack of awareness from the membership at large of what we actually do that my put them off running. Maybe for admod/DT/PT elections a member of the team, or the previous post holder, could write a little bio for the position so people can learn a bit more about it, and make it a bit more personalised that a load of official bumph.

Transparency isn't just discipline. It's also policy discussions that, while they are declassed immediately, it still doesn't help in the situations I mentioned in my first post. There are discussions that are ongoing for months at a time, and all members get is "we're discussing it". Members have no idea what that even means after that length of time. They don't know what goes into a discussion or why it's taking that long to talk about. 

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Kimmie.
17 minutes ago, nameinagame de tepellicker said:

I think the backroom can be a little bit of a black box to members, and I would like it to be more transparent. I think transparency would help members understand our decisions and see all the positive work we do. It's hard to think how this could be improved though (any thoughts would be good!)

I have talked about this before with someone that was on the team and they had proposed that regular members should be able to read but not post in those threads.

Which is a idea i love. 

 

Because now you are saying that you have nothing to hide ( and i believe you) but you are still having places to hide and that just looks bad. 

Because as it looks now I have some moral issues to why i am not running and that is one of them. 

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.Lia

adding to my last post:

 

tbh, even i don't know what "we're discussing it" means after that length of time. in my experience, discussions are not active for that long. they're discussed for a bit (maybe a week, if it's a really hot-button issue), and then dropped. and then someone's working on the bulletin and they ask "where are we on this?" and the cycle repeats. members should know that happens, so they understand what there is to discuss for months at a time on one very specific topic.

 

 

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FaerieFate
14 minutes ago, .Lia said:

Transparency isn't just discipline. It's also policy discussions that, while they are declassed immediately, it still doesn't help in the situations I mentioned in my first post. There are discussions that are ongoing for months at a time, and all members get is "we're discussing it". Members have no idea what that even means after that length of time. They don't know what goes into a discussion or why it's taking that long to talk about. 

Honestly, I don't even know why it's taking that long to talk about. I don't know what goes into discussing these threads for 3 months. But... I am like starting to push stuff through now. That's part of how we got this thread. Promise, I will try to make this take less time. Members don't deserve the wait on critical issues, and it's exhausting for admods.

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Mysterywriter221

Personally, I want to stand for election one day. However, despite being here since 2014 my preference for the chat room and certain forums over others means I don't meet the 100 posts requirement. I can understand the reason for the minimum posts requirements but excluding Just For Fun, AVEN Arcade, and Welcome Lounge from the count doesn't feel right to me. I've seen plenty of avenites help new members find helpful forums while cruising around the Welcome Lounge. Helping new members shouldn't be used against those who want to take a more active role in our community. 

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FaerieFate
4 minutes ago, Mysterywriter221 said:

Personally, I want to stand for election one day. However, despite being here since 2014 my preference for the chat room and certain forums over others means I don't meet the 100 posts requirement. I can understand the reason for the minimum posts requirements but excluding Just For Fun, AVEN Arcade, and Welcome Lounge from the count doesn't feel right to me. I've seen plenty of avenites help new members find helpful forums while cruising around the Welcome Lounge. Helping new members shouldn't be used against those who want to take a more active role in our community. 

I remember back in the day with old chat admods allowed long-time chat regulars to run in elections even if they don't have the post count. So, I don't know if that still applies, but I do thing that you should ask if you can run.

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Iam9man
1 hour ago, nameinagame de tepellicker said:

I think the backroom can be a little bit of a black box to members, and I would like it to be more transparent. I think transparency would help members understand our decisions and see all the positive work we do. It's hard to think how this could be improved though (any thoughts would be good!). Most threads get declassed (made visible to everyone), and this is really good, but often there is so much delay in that that by the time they are declassed there is little reason to read them - I feel most of them are never even read by anyone. I'm sorry, but three year old threads just aren't relevant anymore. I would like to see newer threads prioritised and not lost in the tide of declassed threads, and for the team to ignore older threads unless they feel declassing them contributes significantly to the community. This is just my opinion though and I appreciate there are reasons why it is done the way it currently is.

I second this 👍

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Kimmie.

I am sorry for my posts here. In after thought I feel like a jerk.

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FaerieFate
13 minutes ago, Kimmie. said:

I am sorry for my posts here. In after thought I feel like a jerk.

No, don't feel like a jerk. We asked and you answered. :)

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Kimmie.
4 minutes ago, FaerieFate said:

No, don't feel like a jerk. We asked and you answered. :)

It is more my disrespect and attitude in my posts are asking for forgiveness for.

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Kisa needs a latte

Every once in a while things happen where I want to go to certain members and say “we heard you, or I think we did...we tried but maybe we can do better?  I mean I think I get it but I’m not you so...we’re really trying okay!”  But I can’t because 1) I’m not a mod and 2) the thing we’re doing isn’t public yet.

 

Ive noticed that the amount of red tape in admods has gotten to a degree where I can’t keep up.  Do x in the case of y except for z unless z is w in which case we do q.  But by trying to come up with a procedure for everything instead of working case by case we’ve put ourselves in knots.

 

Im also not a fan of elections.  I like re elections of staff  (not when staff is elected though) but I like the idea of the staff being appointed by current staff and re elected by the site every few years.  That probably won’t happen to be honest.  And I like a shorter time period for elections.  I miss when they were more fun.  Campaigning used to be done in a fun and cute way and I miss seeing that.

 

The biggest issue I have with transparency of threads is sometimes we talk about members as real life examples (and not always in a bad way).  Sometimes it’s even just explaining “hey this is happening because these members feel like we’re doing y”.  The members might be okay with admods seeing that but not the entire membership. If there is a way to protect member privacy while being transparent then that’s awesome and I’d be all for that

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Cheshire-Cat

I wonder whether a standard set of questions could be used in elections rather than a Q&A period. That way you could have a nomination period, the member then does a bio and answers the set questions which is posted for the voting period. It would be a lot less stressful. 

 

I will also say that when I initially brought this up I suggested a possible decrease in the minimum membership to 3 months, and for posts in welcome lounge to be included (and for JFF admod or none admod staff roles JFF should be included too). 

 

I know in the past theres been occasions where multiple elections have been held at once due to election fatigue. Maybe a possibility could be that the first week of the month is election week. Elections for any positions are only run in that one week per month and people can run for as many positions as they would like. If they ran for more than one position then they would have to give a preference. 

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Kisa needs a latte
1 minute ago, Cheshire-Cat said:

I wonder whether a standard set of questions could be used in elections rather than a Q&A period. That way you could have a nomination period, the member then does a bio and answers the set questions which is posted for the voting period. It would be a lot less stressful. 

 

I will also say that when I initially brought this up I suggested a possible decrease in the minimum membership to 3 months, and for posts in welcome lounge to be included (and for JFF admod or none admod staff roles JFF should be included too). 

 

I know in the past theres been occasions where multiple elections have been held at once due to election fatigue. Maybe a possibility could be that the first week of the month is election week. Elections for any positions are only run in that one week per month and people can run for as many positions as they would like. If they ran for more than one position then they would have to give a preference. 

I think I want to marry this idea

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.Lia
32 minutes ago, Cheshire-Cat said:

I wonder whether a standard set of questions could be used in elections rather than a Q&A period. That way you could have a nomination period, the member then does a bio and answers the set questions which is posted for the voting period. It would be a lot less stressful. 

 

I will also say that when I initially brought this up I suggested a possible decrease in the minimum membership to 3 months, and for posts in welcome lounge to be included (and for JFF admod or none admod staff roles JFF should be included too). 

 

I know in the past theres been occasions where multiple elections have been held at once due to election fatigue. Maybe a possibility could be that the first week of the month is election week. Elections for any positions are only run in that one week per month and people can run for as many positions as they would like. If they ran for more than one position then they would have to give a preference. 

i'd like to see fun campaigning. posting on topic in threads with colorful banners in your signature. chatting up the election in chat. posting status updates. dedicated threads for each individual candidate in a specific forum (elections or announcements) where people could chat with the candidate, ask questions, or generally just shit post to get to know the candidate better. why is this not a thing? elections are so damn tedious. 'well we should have a week for each phase to give everyone a chance'. i get that, really, but if someone isn't on regularly enough to realize there's an election going on, does the general population of aven really want them choosing their moderators (and therefore admins)? i wouldn't. the nominations can be a week, because there are often times when people are wishy washy on wanting to run or not, but the q&a and voting periods don't need to be more than four or five days, if that. by the time you're elected to office, you're already burnt out.

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Kisa needs a latte

Not gonna lie, elections are harder than the position

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Puck

Sup, for members who don't know me, I'm Puck. I was a mod for 6 months then an admin for a year. I stepped down by running for and being kindly awarded a PT position.

 

13 hours ago, Road said:

Special question for former staff/volunteers - What made you want to volunteer originally?

What made me originally join is a want to help the community become more organized, helpful, educational, and welcoming.

 

What made me step down from admods is the realization that most admods don't want anything to change, or at least work to actively hinder any actually effective change. Or at least would rather do as little as possible so that they don't feel attacked which just leads to nothing changing because that fear makes change and powerfully supportive leadership decisions impossible. Or they have lost their passion for the site long ago and just want to do the least possible to keep their title while doing nothing of substance. And there are so many people on the team that the disenfranchised/unhelpful individuals are in the majority*. But there's no way to "fire" admods so they can all just get away with this behavior with no repercussions. So joining admods is a lesson in futility**.

 

Obvs, I'm currently PT, but PT is nicer because it's a smaller team thus less bureaucracy. We don't deal with the forums much, just focus on getting helpful information out into the world. Thus I feel like I'm actually doing for the community what I initially hoped I could do through admods.

 

*

Spoiler

I wanted to keep this short and sweet, but I will say I'm being negative because I think AVEN deserves it, but I do think many of those I have called disenfranchised and unhelpful could just as easily be reengaged and helpful if there was good leadership showing them how to be as such. But, because community culture is cyclical, the old disenfranchised/unhelpful guard teaches the new guard to be disenfranchised/unhelpful which teaches the newer still guard to be disenfranchised/unhelpful and so on until time ends, or at least the internet does.

 

**

Spoiler

But then arises the question of, does it matter? Does what admods do really and truly matter? Or does this site as it is now give most members what they actually want out of it? Sure, we loose some because leadership is rather quiet and the culture isn't the best, but could the culture and quiet leadership be exactly what draws those AVEN draws to it? Does nothing change because AVEN is effectively good enough for what people truly want of it? After all, if everything was really so bad, wouldn't we all find literally anything else to spend our time on? In fact, could it be part of the draw? Could part of the draw be that people can get angry at leadership here and rant and rave about how it's bad but still be heard, unlike the great political landscapes of most of our countries where most of us lack any sort of actual direct line to leadership and thus can't even vent our frustrations at it and yet feel as though we are never being heard?  Could part of the draw be that AVEN so rarely bans people that people can basically act as they wish and know that the site will always welcome them back and let them do it all again? Could AVEN give enough people the feeling that they have some control over this little society when they feel they have so little power in the one outside?

 

Maybe what people get from this site isn't the noblest of pursuits, but perhaps they are the reality of the site.

 

There is no growth without vision and if this community's vision is not change, then change will not happen. So the question I often ponder is, what do people actually and honestly want AVEN to be? And is AVEN actually and honestly already serving that purpose***?

***

Spoiler

I also ponder if that purpose actually has anything to do with spreading awareness/education related to asexuality, but that's probably another rant.

 

 

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