[Scummvm-devel] Forum moderation

Max Horn max at quendi.de
Wed Jan 11 02:56:01 CET 2006

Hi folks,

I do not want to step on anybody's toes again, and I really don't like to
write this because I fear that exactly that will happen. However, I also
feel that I *have* to write it because it's my duty as a project leader to
do things like this, even if I don't like to...

Regarding moderation: I very much appreciate the efforts of all the people
who are moderating our forums. This is really needed. However, folks,
please try to keep it civil. the moderators have a high responsibility
regarding the 'tone' and atmosphere of a forum. Yes I realize that it is
annoying to see posts violating our forum rules. Yes, people who insult
people using strong language should be kept under tight control.

However, when people clearly have read them and politely explain why they
are asking anyway, I think it's fair to give them an equally polite
answer. Instead of only locking the thread without any reply, or posting a
harsh reply and then locking, or just deleting the post.

Regarding the tone of replies: Please try to stay polite even if the ask
idiotic questions. If the question really is stupid and you can't get
yourself to write a non-sarcastic, non-insulting reply (I know it's hard
:-), well... simply do not write a reply at all! Almost always somebody
else will write a reply. Of course, this is just a rule of a thumb (some
people really are too stupid and spam the forum with several copies of a
stupid question, yelling at those people is usually fine :-). I try to
follow this rule myself, and I do not claim to always suceed, but it helps
to keep this in mind :-)

Regarding Locking: This is OK in some cases, but it should *always* be
explained by a post to the thread.
Deleting a post is also OK in some cases, but really think about whether
it is necessary. It'll destroy the flow of the thread (since later posts
often refer to deleted posts, which makes it kinda hard to understand
what's going on there if you haven't followed the thread from the start).
And as I stated again, by deleting it you are at the same time destroying

Some examples for good reasons to delete a post: It contains foul & strong
language, it gives links to warez...
Bad reasons: The post request warez... yes, it's a bad thing, but does not
cause us direct damage. You can either simply ignore it or lock the thread
(esp. if the post started a new thread -- think twice before locking an
important active thread). What you *should* delete are the replies
pointing them to warez, though... people doing that are candidates for a
ban, BTW.

Regading banning: I'd prefer if we documented this a bit better. Like,
keeping note of the reasons we banned a certain user. Ender, can we add a
hidden forum which only the moderators see, and to which posts that lead
to a ban are moved, so that we keep the material leading to the ban?
Please do so if this is possible.

Again: This post is not meant to insult or offend anybody or demean your
work as a moderator. Also, I do *not* have any specific person in mind
here, but rather the collection of all that is going on in the forums. If
you feel insulted or offended by this mail, I honestly believe that it's
your own fault for reading things into it that I never said :-)


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