Suggested Rules for Wiki

Open: A proposal for community standards of forum behavior

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Nalates
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Suggested Rules for Wiki

Post by Nalates » Sun May 23, 2010 11:31 pm

I placed an outline style page in the wiki for "Suggested Rules". That page links back to this thread for discussion.

This is my first draft at organizing the material. I expect the page to change as I progress through the various items. However, comments and suggestions are welcome at any time.
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Re: Suggested Rules for Wiki

Post by Mac_Fife » Wed May 26, 2010 8:15 pm

I changed the "anonymous" References in the section headed Rules to use footnotes instead; just looks better to me. If you don't like that, just revert the changes.

In Moderator Guidelines & Definitions while I generally agree that publishing examples may help to clarify how a rule is meant to work, it can also become a stick with which to beat the moderators, as it may reduce the latitude you have when something gets close to the boundaries. And you can give yourself a headache over how to give an example of what would be considered an unacceptable or offensive post (you don't want your example being reported as offensive :) ).
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Re: Suggested Rules for Wiki

Post by Nalates » Thu May 27, 2010 6:36 pm

The changes are fine. TY

I get your point about the examples. The whole thing is a suggested concept which I come to from the viewpoint more definition/examples is better and I think JWP and you come more from the less is better side. I think in the Rules Philosophy this issue of examples and more or less will expand. Hopefully we'll come to some optimum point between minimalism and overly detailed. Plus none of us are going to know where we are in the process until I start placing them in the wiki. I probably have some example stubs in that may get removed.

In making examples, I think concepts of most offensive things can be described. One does not really need to provide an example of everything. At least it is not my intent. An ethnic slur does not need an example. Inappropriate sexual remarks don't need examples. But other issues like irrational logic that we see often used and leading to heated arguments tell us the descriptive definition isn't doing the job.

Also, as I add things to the wiki, they are open to discussion and change. I do not expect all my summaries of the forum info remain unchanged. Help is appreciated.
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Re: Suggested Rules for Wiki

Post by Mac_Fife » Thu May 27, 2010 8:13 pm

Nalates wrote:I get your point about the examples. The whole thing is a suggested concept which I come to from the viewpoint more definition/examples is better and I think JWP and you come more from the less is better side.
No, it's more me playing Devil's Advocate :twisted:

I actually like the idea of examples, but if you try to give too many you run the risk of just putting people off reading them. In general, people don't bother to read forum rules, possibly because many think/assume they know what the rules are. Others read them when they first sign up, but over time forget them. Anyway, the point is, if something is too wordy, it won't get read.

The other question here is, is it a better idea to keep your examples "private" and for reference by the moderators only or to make them public? In most cases, moderators will prefer to have a bit of latitude in applying rules, so they can choose to post a warning in thread and allow a thread to "live" rather than removing posts, if the infringement isn't too serious. That might actually work as a de facto "example". Published examples may however invite post reports from those who see blind obedience of the rules as an end in itself, thereby removing or reducing any latitude. There's the quote from Douglas Bader to the effect that "Rules are for the obedience of fools and guidance of wise men". It is almost inevitable that at some point, a circumstance will arise that you hadn't considered in creating a rule and you then need to apply some interpretation of the rules; published examples may force you into staying within the bounds your examples set rather than applying common sense.

Maybe I'm over-analysing.
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Re: Suggested Rules for Wiki

Post by Nalates » Sat May 29, 2010 2:46 am

Over-analyzing... I tend to do that. A some point I snap out of it... usually... mmm... now and then...

If these rules, guidelines and examples are used correctly moderators might just refer a reader off to this site for an example of what they are getting at in a warning, rather than copy everything into their set. I suppose that would be a philosophical point.

Private examples verses public... I tend to think public is better. My thinking runs along the line of how to reduce the amount of moderation needed and the level to which members can self moderate.

Moderators being limited in my thinking is like role play. Imagination, wit, and practicality can can keep one from being limited.

One of the basic examples one might want to include is trolling. To use just examples of trolling with setting the context and explaining it would likely produce negative results. When one includes context, motivation, and actual knowledge available in the process, I think it creates a high degree of flexibility. Whatever the case, that is what I hope comes out.
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GoW, GoMa and GoA apprentice - Guildmaster GoC - SL = Nalates Urriah

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