How much fun is "too much" for these forums?

Status
Not open for further replies.

Darkside55

The Freeman
Joined
Jun 12, 2009
Messages
12,089
Reaction score
90
Something's been bugging me lately. I've noticed a disturbing trend on the forum that, while it doesn't manifest too often, really sticks out when it does. I'm talking about the amount of fun we're allowed to express on the forum.

Got home today, watched a movie ("Meet the Robinsons," which pertains to time travel, which funny enough is related to this post), and hopped on to check the forums. Some of you might've noticed the "My Avatar" thread, some of you might've participated in it; if you missed it, basically it was a thread I decreed No Man's Land, and we started using it for "whatever."

At first, the thread was a mindless "one-up" monster battle, culminating in a battle between Godzilla, a Borg cube filled with mudkips, and a yeti-thing. Then they all got nuked and we began to rebuild in the fallout.

Rebuilding had to wait though, because someone began messing with the timestream! In order to prevent a paradox, Cortez from Timesplitters, the G-man, Sherman and Mr. Peabody, and Dexter (of Dexter's Laboratory) were off to fight the splitter and prevent history--and the world!--from being unraveled as we know it!

I was enjoying the hell out of that thread. It was developing from a kaiju fight into a cohesive (albeit silly) story, and I was eager to see what'd developed.

But it was deleted. Not closed, deleted. "12 pages of spam." It was starting to come together, and it gets labeled as spam?

And it reminded me of something I brought up to my co-staff here last month, regarding some threads forum member Hydrometeor started. Though off-kilter, they were funny, and people were enjoying them, yet his threads got closed down as spam and he got slapped with "trolling and harassment" infractions. That really burned me up, and I said something about that (though none of you outside of staff saw it), and now I've gotta add this in there.

So it seems to me that the trend of this forum seems to be, "Have fun, BUT NOT TOO MUCH FUN, or we'll come and close your spammy thread." The Louge's motto, "Sit around and talk about anything (within reason!)" seems to only extend to things that're rather boorish. "Within reason" should be more like, "Stick to topics about what you saw today on Yahoo! News, and lets have four frackin' threads about religion vs. atheism where we all argue semantics." That's the Lounge. That's what I see the Lounge as. Oh, and "Rate a member/comment on a member's sig/avatar/members members members" threads; which, while not as bad as the rest of the things, I'd certainly count as more spammy than some things I've seen. Certainly more circle-jerky. Do you guys even remember they locked the werewolf thread for spam? There's no "or not" to affix to the end of that, either.

So what's the line? Where's the set line on what is spam and what isn't? What constitutes on thread being worthy of keeping versus another? Because in my own personal opinion, and I'm sure some of you--hopefully most of you--will agree with me that threads that people are enjoying should be kept open, as long as they don't infringe on any larger rules like actual trolling, harassment, things of that nature. But I mean if you're going to keep threads open where people yell at each other about the differences between agnosticism and atheism for twenty-five hundred pages, ffs, at least let Cortez and Co. fix the timestream. At least let Hydrometeor post his version of the Weekend Web. At least let us decide whether there are really werewolves or not.

I'm just going to throw this out there too: the Lounge regulates itself. Barring thread necromancy, any thread that the members don't find favorable, or any thread that has outlasted its usefulness, will eventually fall off the board due to lack of participation. Even if no mods came around to lock threads any more, they would eventually go away because nobody would bump them. The members regulate their own threads. The fact that a thread is being bumped signifies that the thread is still in use. And if we're going to really call this a place where people can relax and actually LOUNGE, by the word's very definition, we should at least allow a little humor on these boards without "SPAM INFRACTION, CLOSED."

If people enjoy something, let them have it. I think it's high time that both staff and members really looked at what we need to consider as a spam thread, or a trolling thread. We need to really reevaluate the rules here. I spend a large (read: pathetic) amount of time on this forum, this forum, the Lounge in particular; I would at least like the chance to FIX THE TIMESTREAM once in awhile if I want a diversion from reading about why Christians consider homosexuals immoral and trying to explain atheism to someone.
 

Zephos

Companion Cube
Joined
Dec 28, 2005
Messages
2,975
Reaction score
38
I was wondering where that thread disappeared to...

Rather nice argument, you've got right thar.
 

-Psy-

Walking round in women's underwear
Joined
Mar 9, 2005
Messages
4,805
Reaction score
0
People use too many internet memes on this forums. Btw, I came.
 

Pulse

Newbie
Joined
Dec 25, 2004
Messages
2,584
Reaction score
0
Indeed, things can get a bit pedantic round here at times. A perfect example is the latest infraction I received for a quirky comment. I would've gladly accepted this if I didn't go on to actually help the OP in identifying their problem.

Bah.
 

99.vikram

Tank
Joined
Apr 15, 2006
Messages
4,324
Reaction score
8
You mean memes like D: ? D:

I agree with Darkside, but do you remember that a while back you got me infraction'd for using the word 'baykun' in one of my posts? Maybe that wasn't you, but I think even stupid memes like that are what causes a community to bond.

For example, I've been a member of various tech forums for a long time, but I feel absolutely no personal connection to any of them. I feel like I'm a part of something here, and that's because of the common experiences (being HL fans, using D:, broken HL2.net incidents, Lemonking etc.)

Just thought I'd share my views. :cool:
 

Darkside55

The Freeman
Joined
Jun 12, 2009
Messages
12,089
Reaction score
90
People use too many internet memes on this forums. Btw, I came.
One thing I've learned about the internet is that you can never stem the tide. Something popular (catchphrases, memes, trends) will find their way around. So while yes, certain memes do tend to turn up here, there's no harm in it.

Indeed, things can get a bit pedantic round here at times. A perfect example is the latest infraction I received for a quirky comment.
You got an infraction for that? Seriously? What the Christ. I wonder what the mods are thinking sometimes.

You mean memes like D: ? D:

I agree with Darkside, but do you remember that a while back you got me infraction'd for using the word 'baykun' in one of my posts? Maybe that wasn't you, but I think even stupid memes like that are what causes a community to bond.
Wasn't me bro. I've never said the word 'baykuns' to my recollection.

And I'll wholeheartedly agree on the point of injokes making the community more cohesive. What's the point of spending time talking to people on the internet if you have no shared experiences with them? Our own memes, the ones we form here, make our little group better.
 

soulslicer

Tank
Joined
Mar 16, 2007
Messages
4,624
Reaction score
8
+1 to all that you said.

I'm really wondering who deleted that thread.
 

Druckles

Party Escort Bot
Joined
Dec 13, 2004
Messages
10,655
Reaction score
15
I understand you perfectly Darkside. I've often found these boards a bit strict, and I've often considered whether I might be "reported" for spam everytime I post. Probably some childhood trauma given to me by TDE. I was actually thinking this the other day when posting my thread. I thought, well, this is a bit weird and pointless, but I'm going to need an answer some day. But then I remembered the name "The Lounge" and realised it's just an everday question that someone might ask in a "lounge".
 

Jintor

Didn't Get Temp-Banned
Joined
Dec 15, 2004
Messages
14,783
Reaction score
14
Sometimes these mods are pedantic. But not too pedantic. On avatarspirit.com I got temp-bant and my ability to post removed for saying "And that's why you should (SNIP! - Ed)" in regards to piracy.

Yeeesh. A more uptight bunch of bastards I've never seen.

In other news, I can't believe that whole thread got deleted. What the ****, man. What the ****.
 

Druckles

Party Escort Bot
Joined
Dec 13, 2004
Messages
10,655
Reaction score
15
It's ok... there are more conundrums out there to be faced. Just a bit upset I didn't see it to the end. Had to go sleep n all
 

Kadayi

Newbie
Joined
Oct 6, 2003
Messages
6,035
Reaction score
0
I'm still waiting to see the content you're supposed to be writing.

But yes the circle jerk threads just seem like an excuse to raise ones post count. Delete them all.
 

Darkside55

The Freeman
Joined
Jun 12, 2009
Messages
12,089
Reaction score
90
It isn't so much that rules are strictly enforced, it's that the boundaries of these rules have been extended so far that no one's even sure where the line is. "Is this topic or reply I'm posting going to be accepted, or am I going to be slapped with an infraction?"

So that's the real issue. "What constitutes spam?" What should a thread be closed for? What should a post be infractioned for?

Because right now, I'll make no bones about it--it's stick-in-the-ass-ery. That's what I feel. Lines really need to be drawn here. The mood needs to be lifted.

Kayadi said:
I'm still waiting to see the content you're supposed to be writing.
So is everyone else. :LOL: I spend more time on the forum than I do writing content, that's for sure. Sometimes I feel I'm underutilized in that regard.
 

Druckles

Party Escort Bot
Joined
Dec 13, 2004
Messages
10,655
Reaction score
15
"Is this topic or reply I'm posting going to be accepted, or am I going to be slapped with an infraction?"
Quite how I'm feeling right now.

Edit:

Spam
The act of posting inappropriate and unsolicited messages to large numbers of e-mail recipients and Usenet news groups. Also refers to the message itself.
 

Naph

Companion Cube
Joined
May 8, 2007
Messages
3,314
Reaction score
34
Ah just another day in Halflife2.net, it was a good laugh when it lasted in my opinion.
 

k3ithrm

Newbie
Joined
Oct 15, 2007
Messages
262
Reaction score
0
yeah, the lounge is boooooring. that thread was really refreshing. :D
 

Darkside55

The Freeman
Joined
Jun 12, 2009
Messages
12,089
Reaction score
90
Our own forums loosely define spam as, "content of no importance, single word posts or completely off topic from the thread."

Content of no importance is so vague that it can be applied to almost every single post ever made on this forum. What classifies something as "important?" On an internet forum provided for the enjoyment of its members, isn't anything that they find entertaining "important?"

Single word posts I can agree with 99.9% of the time. Most words are under the six-character limit anyway, so the automatic filter will generally rule those out. Most people on here don't post that way anyway, so it's somewhat moot for regulars.

"Completely off topic from the thread." Now here's the crux, because this one pertains to one of the issues at hand. The thread itself was a useless thread, and therefore decomissioned. I had not expected it to turn into anything--I just wanted to throw chairs :LOL:--but we all turned it into something. From a topic that had no relevance to something we could all enjoy. Should that count as spam? It seems more like the reverse: from spam to a valid topic.

And judging by some previous threads I've seen closed on this forum, let's say we tried to recreate the thread and called it as all on topic. What do you think would happen? In the current climate I think it'd get closed. And that's not right.
 

Druckles

Party Escort Bot
Joined
Dec 13, 2004
Messages
10,655
Reaction score
15
Content of no importance is so vague that it can be applied to almost every single post ever made on this forum. What classifies something as "important?" On an internet forum provided for the enjoyment of its members, isn't anything that they find entertaining "important?"
Importance is definitely too hard to define. The mere fact that everyone, when posting something, considers it to be important or entertaining at least to themselves, contradicts this. I might post a five word response which I consider to be humorous and thus "important" to the forum. Other people, however, might not find the post to be as humorous. So from who's perspective should importance be judged, from the postees, the members, or the mods. A mod with no sense of humour would certainly be issuing "refractions" left, right and centre, and alot of members don't even bother to read long posts, so this one might be "tl;dr"ed, and thus no longer important from their perspective, even though it could've added a great deal to the topic. And if taken from the posters perspective, any post on the board that they have posted could be important. Thus spam would no longer be found anywhere. So um... who the hell is actually going to critique things in regards to importance...?

Someone will response with tl;dr :dozey:
 

99.vikram

Tank
Joined
Apr 15, 2006
Messages
4,324
Reaction score
8
This thread is going to become a flame magnet, methinks.

Staff will wage war on staff! Egos will be bruised, I tell ya! :p
 

Pulse

Newbie
Joined
Dec 25, 2004
Messages
2,584
Reaction score
0
In b4 'posting here is a privilege not a right', 'go somewhere else if you don't like it' etc.
 

Stigmata

The Freeman
Joined
Jun 2, 2003
Messages
15,911
Reaction score
371
I was legitimately depressed (not much, but slightly) when I found out that thread was deleted. That thread was harmless and fun, dammit.

In b4 'posting here is a privilege not a right', 'go somewhere else if you don't like it' etc.
Generally it's Hectic Glenn who tell us that. He'll be here momentarily, I'm sure.
 

Solaris

Party Escort Bot
Joined
Feb 11, 2005
Messages
10,323
Reaction score
4
I fully endorse this product and/or event.
 

The Monkey

The Freeman
Joined
Jun 5, 2004
Messages
16,317
Reaction score
14
These boards are still 1000 times less strict than some of the forums I've been to.

Take Lost Forum as an example.
First, I was banned for two weeks for saying that it was ignorant to not have heard of the Falun Gong.

Then, I got banned from the discussion board indefinitely for posting this in a thread called "Christian discussion - discussion, no debates!":
The thread title is funny, isn't discussion and debates the same thing?
That was several months ago and I'm still banned for that forum.

So yeah, it could be a lot worse.
 

Darkside55

The Freeman
Joined
Jun 12, 2009
Messages
12,089
Reaction score
90
Although yes, it could be worse, the concern is this forum, not other forums. It doesn't become an excuse that certain threads are locked, people get infractions unjustly, etc. etc. just because it's worse on some other forum.

This forum is our concern. We're not all members of places like Avatar-Spirit or the Lost Forums. We're all members of Halflife2.net. Our priority should be making THIS forum better, not excusing it because it could be worse.

(Not saying you were making excuses for the forum, my friend, but if we cite every unjust forum there is, we're gonna be here awhile without making any headway ;) )
 

Druckles

Party Escort Bot
Joined
Dec 13, 2004
Messages
10,655
Reaction score
15
I call for a reformation of the laws governing Spamming, Trolling and Flaming. All those in favour say aye!
 

<RJMC>

The Freeman
Joined
Jan 21, 2004
Messages
11,049
Reaction score
69
bet ya if this is accepted people will be tired of it and things will go back to normal
 

Cormeh

Tank
Joined
Dec 6, 2004
Messages
4,864
Reaction score
0
This is all fine and well, but in the infraction/deletion examples used in this thread, what was preventing anyone PM'ing a member of staff asking either:

reasons as to why a certain act was carried out OR whether anything that came to be in a previous thread can be continued by a new thread of discussion.

I think the forums are fine to be honest, so what would anyone with an issue in this thread suggest as an improvement for starters?
 

Ravioli

Microboner
Joined
Nov 1, 2004
Messages
5,097
Reaction score
2
i love this forum because of its freedom, but lately it has slowly becomed more like a police-forum :/
 

lePobz

Tank
Joined
Sep 18, 2003
Messages
6,487
Reaction score
0
You only have to look at unrestricted forums to see what happens when people are allowed to piss about and get away with it. Maybe have an un-policed section of the forum entirely for pissing about ... that way everyones happy.
 

kriztov

Newbie
Joined
Nov 17, 2007
Messages
67
Reaction score
0
On the other forum I frequent we have what is known as a spam board. There, no posts count, and members can pretty much just do whatever the **** they want within reason (So no posting porn pretty much)

It would probably help the forum I suppose if it were introduced here.

We also had one huge spam topic "Teh Randomness"

It was awesome, and had around 500,000 posts before some pissant decided to delete it. Now we have "Teh Randomness 2.0"

Yep
 

Stigmata

The Freeman
Joined
Jun 2, 2003
Messages
15,911
Reaction score
371
Or the mods can lighten up and let the occasional fun, tangential thread continue its existence. There can be a middle ground here, between hard-nosed conservatism and lawless spam fest.
 

evil^milk

Tank
Joined
Apr 24, 2004
Messages
4,808
Reaction score
7
"Completely off topic from the thread." Now here's the crux, because this one pertains to one of the issues at hand. The thread itself was a useless thread, and therefore decomissioned. I had not expected it to turn into anything--I just wanted to throw chairs :LOL:--but we all turned it into something. From a topic that had no relevance to something we could all enjoy. Should that count as spam? It seems more like the reverse: from spam to a valid topic.
I'd like to add that the beauty of discussion is that one topic leads to the other. Remember that time when you had an RL conversation, and then that dumb blonde girl was like, "Wow we were talking about Jesus now we're talking about sofas"?

The point is "Completely off topic from the thread" will inevitably happen, in RL as well as in any forum, so I wouldn't be too strict in regards to "Completely off topic from the thread." By the way, there's someone who'll bump the original post anyway sometime during the thread.

edit:

The threads that should REALLY be locked/deleted are those brown-nosing "Rate the above member/comment on above person's sig" ones. They're nothing but +1UP POSTCOUNT, ffs. If you want to increase your postcount go to the "Rate the film you just watched" thread or "What are you listening to now" thread.
 

repiV

Tank
Joined
Sep 11, 2006
Messages
4,283
Reaction score
2
A few months ago I got insulted and bullied by a certain moderator who threatened to ban me if I continued to reply to his PMs of intimidation because apparently that would be "spamming his inbox".
Said moderator also happens to be the most arrogant and insufferable person I've ever encountered in my life. Fortunately I haven't seen him around here in a long time, perhaps he joined the Hitler Youth.

I take solace in the fact that people like that are almost always deeply depressed arseholes who are despised by the whole world and have to take it out on people on the internet. That pathetic little "moderator" badge is the biggest thing they will ever accomplish in life.
 

Darkside55

The Freeman
Joined
Jun 12, 2009
Messages
12,089
Reaction score
90
Stigmata said:
Or the mods can lighten up and let the occasional fun, tangential thread continue its existence. There can be a middle ground here, between hard-nosed conservatism and lawless spam fest.
Indeed. There's no reason to add another forum where there are no rules and completely at-random topics. Believe me I frequent a forum that has two such boards like that and they're filled with a bit too much nonsense for even my tastes. (If any of you are goons, I'm referring to FYAD and BYOB)

If you look at examples in this thread, nobody's asking for spam to rule the day. But come on, things like getting infractions for funny comments and 'baykuns', fun threads being closed down, the general feeling of "Am I going to get punished for posting this?" really needs to be slashed.

Cormeh said:
what was preventing anyone PM'ing a member of staff asking either:

reasons as to why a certain act was carried out OR whether anything that came to be in a previous thread can be continued by a new thread of discussion.
I did, but I also thought it'd be best to address the issue with the public as well. It's an important topic that concerns everyone on the forum, and there should be an open discussion of it rather than just a quickly PMed answer. The forum does thrive on debate after all.
 

repiV

Tank
Joined
Sep 11, 2006
Messages
4,283
Reaction score
2
I'd like to add that the beauty of discussion is that one topic leads to the other. Remember that time when you had an RL conversation, and then that dumb blonde girl was like, "Wow we were talking about Jesus now we're talking about sofas"?

The point is "Completely off topic from the thread" will inevitably happen, in RL as well as in any forum, so I wouldn't be too strict in regards to "Completely off topic from the thread." By the way, there's someone who'll bump the original post anyway sometime during the thread.
Exactly, conversations don't need a conductor to orchestrate them. People will talk about whatever they wanna talk about, and what the hell is wrong with that?
Moderators should be there to resolve serious problems that members are unable to, not control discussions. And certainly not to use their own biased judgement on what is and what is not acceptable or offensive.
 

repiV

Tank
Joined
Sep 11, 2006
Messages
4,283
Reaction score
2
I did, but I also thought it'd be best to address the issue with the public as well. It's an important topic that concerns everyone on the forum, and there should be an open discussion of it rather than just a quickly PMed answer. The forum does thrive on debate after all.
This is the part where we offer you the chance to be king and you choose to stand for the presidency instead. :p
 

Azner

Tank
Joined
Mar 30, 2006
Messages
5,652
Reaction score
3
So it seems to me that the trend of this forum seems to be, "Have fun, BUT NOT TOO MUCH FUN, or we'll come and close your spammy thread." The Louge's motto, "Sit around and talk about anything (within reason!)" seems to only extend to things that're rather boorish. "Within reason" should be more like, "Stick to topics about what you saw today on Yahoo! News, and lets have four frackin' threads about religion vs. atheism where we all argue semantics." That's the Lounge.
Err...

*Cloaks and hides*
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top