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A Brief Forum Reorganization Proposal

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  • A Brief Forum Reorganization Proposal

    A Brief Forum Reorganization Proposal

    The following proposal includes some organizational changes in addition to some more clear behavioral policies. The current set-up of the forums is too simplistic and allows information to be buried quickly behind completely different subjects and outdated information. The current behavioral policy is vague and and, appears, difficult to enforce. This brief Forum Proposal would allow for definite quality of life improvements for experienced forum go-ers, newbie, as well as PG staff.

    Some quick notes before I layout what I believe the Forum Set-Up should look like:

    This is a Forum
    • This is a main Sub-Forum
      • Prefixes are little images, buttons, or text that topic-starters can add to their title so people know exactly what is being discussed in the topic. Prefixes should be custom to each forum or subforum.
      • These are addition subforums that exist in this main sub-forum only.
    • This is another main Sub-Forum
        • Here are more notes or details about the thoughts I had.

    Forum Set-Up
    Town Hall
    • Rules & Information
      • No Prefixes
      • No Subforums
    • Announcements
      • No Prefixes
      • Subforum: Archive
    • Patch Notes
      • Prefixes: Pre-Release, Live
      • Subforum: Archive
    • Preview: Additions & Fixes
      • Prefixes: Dragons, Towers, General
        • Preview Informational threads are posted here by PG employees and any feedback is solicited from them in a forum below.
      • Subforum: Archive

    Support Interactions
    • Prefixes: Good, Poor, Needs Attention
    • No Subforums

    • Report a Bug
      • Prefixes: Event, War, Dragon & Spells, Base, Runes/Glyphs, Season, Matchmaking/Attacking, General
      • Subforum: Archive
        • A form that players fill out that gives the exact details of the bug that would be helpful to know (device, dragon, situation, etc). This form, when completed, would create a thread for each bug so players can track which bugs have already been reported.
    • Bug Workarounds
      • Prefixes: Event, War, Dragon & Spells, Base, Runes/Glyphs, Season, Matchmaking/Attacking, General
      • Subforum: Archive
        • Bugs that have a work-around could be posted here with details.

    • New Ideas
      • Prefixes: Dragon, Event, Tower, Base
      • No Subforums
        • Any new ideas for the game could be posted here by members.
    • Pocket Gems Requested Feedback
      • Prefixes: Dragons, Towers, General
      • Subforum: Archive
        • This forum only has topics started by PG employees and is used for soliciting feedback from the players on a particular subject.

    Building a Base & Defense Strategies
    • Guides
      • No Prefixes
      • Subforums: Archives
        • Archives would be used for all out of date guides.
    • Base Request Help
      • No Prefixes
      • No Subforums
    • Questions
      • No Prefixes
      • No Subforums

    Breeding, Training, & Spells
    • Guides
      • No Prefixes
      • Subforums: Archives
        • Archives would be used for all out of date guides.
    • Questions
      • No Prefixes
      • No Subforums

    Wars & Events
    • Wars
      • No Prefixes
      • No Subforums
    • Major Events
      • Prefixes: (a prefix for every event PG deems “major”)
      • No Subforums
    • Minor Events
      • Prefixes: (a prefix for every event PG deems “minor”)
      • No Subforums
    • Season
      • Prefixes: Fall, Winter, Spring
      • Subforum: Archive

    Join a Team
    • Players Wanted
      • Prefixes: Diamond, Sapphire, Platinum, Gold, Silver, Bronze, New, Meger
      • No Subforums
    • Team Wanted
      • No Prefixes
      • No Subforums

    Dragon Tavern
    World Chat
    Forum Profiles

    The current forum profiles do not adequately allow for customization that would be beneficial for a specialized game forum such as this. Thus, I propose the following be implemented:

    Mini-Profile (the profile you see when you post something):
    • Level
    • Best/Favorite Dragon
    • League

    • Be expanded to allow more than 1000 characters (which isn’t very many if you’re using BBCode or links)

    Do NOT encourage:
    • In game name (on profile)
    • Team name

    Behavioral Policy

    Currently the Behavior Policy seems pretty fluid and I do not believe the moderators can actually do much of anything other than delete or edit offensive posts. I feel that if there was a solid policy that could be used by the mods, issues of greater importance could then be see by PG staff. Here are some of my suggestions to use based on my 10+ years moderating forums.

    Warn Meter
    Each member on the War Dragons forum has a Warn Meter on their account. This always starts at zero (0) and will be bumped up as necessary as a response to rule infringement or other anti-community behavior. The meter can go up to a maximum of five (5), at which point the member will be issued a ban.

    Friendly Reminders
    For less severe infractions, members are granted “friendly reminders” to inform them that they are breaking a rule in an effort to prevent it from happening in the future. These do not cause the warning meter to go up and have no permanent effect on a member’s record, though they are taken into account if the member continues to break the rules.

    Issuing Warnings
    Depending on the severity of the infraction, the warn meter will be bumped up anywhere from one (1) to five (5) times. The meter can be lowered after time with good behavior. A warned members' count will begin to decrease after six months of continuously good behavior from the date of the last warning they were issued. For every six months of continuously good behavior, one point will be removed from their count.

    One major thing I don’t see are varying degrees of punitive measures, or ‘sanctions’. It’s pretty much ban or no ban right now. When warnings are issued sanctions should also be issued. These sanctions increase in severity depending on the number of warning points being issued against a member for rule violations. Sanctions could be as follows:
    • One warning: One (1) week moderation queue*.
    • Two warnings: Two (2) weeks moderation queue.
    • Three warnings: Two (2) week account suspension, two weeks of moderation queue.
    • Four warnings: One (1) month account suspension, one month moderation queue.
    • Five warnings: Permanent ban

    *Moderation queue requires posts to be approved by a mod member before being publicly visible. Any posts that are seen in the queue that are in violation of the rules can result in a lengthening of moderation queue and additional sanctions.
    Forum Moderators

    I do not think there are currently enough moderators on the forums for the needs that arise, especially considering they are not paid. The ones we have are fabulous, but I think they are limited on time, “power” to do much, and on information. I strongly feel that if the moderators had a private forum (if they don’t already) with PG staff, they could streamline the needs for the attention and time of PG employees. They could call attention to a pattern of a troll poster, they could make a list of threads where PG attention is sorely needed (and keep it updated with how long it’s been since an employee responded to it), and so much more. This list alone I feel would streamline the process of PG employee’s answering questions and weighing in on important topics while not being bogged down by useless tags.

    Forum moderators could also be used, and trusted, to weigh in on the above Behavioral Policies proposal along with many other tasks. These are very dedicated members of the community and I feel they should be treated like such.
    Last edited by TheRedDelilah; 05-21-2017, 04:28 PM. Reason: format errors fixed
    Love Red,

    Leader of Rulith
    Lover of Spreadsheets

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    Twitter - @TheRedDelilah

  • #2
    Lol @ "brief"


    • TheRedDelilah
      TheRedDelilah commented
      Editing a comment
      Hey, it's it is pretty brief for me 😜

    • Hogey
      Hogey commented
      Editing a comment
      😂😂 true

    • Dakhunter
      Dakhunter commented
      Editing a comment
      One page is "brief" for Red already. Usually, her proposals are 3-4 pages long lol

  • #3
    The forums are far from fine lmao. The software is not good, they're buggy and often suffer from benign neglect. The proposed changes--including more consistent rule enforcement and getting more engagement from PG on key topics--would be a definite improvement.


    • #4
      I'll chime in here, i have quite a bit of forum experience too with 8+ years & 7,500+ posts on VWVortex with my same username here and giving both technical advice as well as dealing with the high school subforum that is the mk4 crowd.

      1) This forum is too small for strict rules. I'd suggest keeping it fluid and simply implement a few more moderators who PG trusts who have the ability to assess posts and hand out infraction notifications. That is all that is really missing here.

      2) The rules you are trying to set up here with how titles should be laid out and what content is in each is quite a bit too specific. Yes it would be "ideal" and would be organized for your OCD; however you know the drill. It is also nice for people to be given the opportunity to present their content in their own style/format and if that includes a clickbait title, then I think we should let them have that bit of freedom, no matter how small or insignificant it may seem.

      Keep in mind that not everyone is as perfect as yourself; there are the rebels who don't care where they post and will cross post no matter what, there are those with a small language barrier who don't understand where to post properly, then there are those posts which can go in either area. Players can still request that topics be moved if they are gaining momentum and discussions are happening but for now there really isn't a need to go into an entire overhaul of the system for the 150-200 people who actually post and discuss things on here.

      3) As useful as signatures are, they take up a TON of space when scrolling through posts. Expanding them even longer would only benefit like 3 people (yourself being the main one) but i'm not sure how easy it is to change. Either way the profiles are set up just fine IMO, no need to change anything.

      4) Regarding bans and escalation, this seems quite a bit more strict and structured than it needs to be. I'm used to people just settling their own shit, and if there is actually a real big problem then the moderator hands out infractions on a case by case basis. The moderator determines the length and the ban style. I have NEVER seen users have to go through the whole admin approval process again and i would HATE for this to happen again. By the time a moderator actually gets around to approving the post new information could come up, 6 new people could have posted, and then the person needs to edit their post or post yet again. This completely wrecks the flow of the forums and a simple infraction notice on their profile should suffice to let future moderators to see previous behavior when determining new infraction lengths.


      • TheRedDelilah
        TheRedDelilah commented
        Editing a comment
        1. I think for the rules I'm just tired of seeing people get temp banned over and over. If you get three temp bans, I don't understand why a perma ban isn't implemented instead of the fourth temp ban. Above is just my long winded attempt of saying that.

        2. Oh I wouldn't imagine people would have to use pre-fixes in anyway, but it might be nice to have the option. Does it satisfy my own organization OCD? Oh without a flaming doubt. I'd just like it if there was a pretty little button that went in front of my recruitment post that said "Sapphire" or "Dragon" in front of the new dragon ideas people have. An option, not a necessity.

        The reason I suggested multiple subforums here is because there really isn't any structure right now and I miss discussion a lot. 🤷*♀️ I just thought it would be nice to have more areas so the neat conversations don't get buried. As far as putting topics "in the right spot", that a pretty easy mod task to do. Like three seconds easy.

        3. CAUGHT ME, lol. Changing signature character length takes a few clicks and an enter. For the profiles, that's super easy to add custom fields as well. The reason I thought of it is to help lurkers or newbies. I mean, when I was a beginner I would always wonder "am I getting advice from another newbie or an experienced player." Just helps with perspective so I thought I'd mention it.

        4. I suppose you're talking about mod queue specifically. You don't need admin access to do this, as its part of the mod CP that just has to be enabled. When a post is approved from the queue, it goes where it would have originally in order. I can see what you're saying though. The forums I had we used mod queues mostly for trolls so the forum didn't have to waste time looking at the nonsense. Again, just an idea.

        All in all, all of these actions take a few clicks in the ACP and no coding experience. Thanks for the constructive criticism, boo.

      • Mechengg
        Mechengg commented
        Editing a comment
        Herro Red

        1. I think that maybe this is just due to the permissions and authority that the moderators are given here. They shouldn't be afraid to drop the ban hammer when there has been multiple offenses with multiple warnings and chances given.

        2. Well we can try our best to properly label our threads and maybe it will catch on That is all i'm counting on

        3. LOL. People certainly can ascertain that you know a thing or two if you have a lot of items listed in your signature. But i think your signature is long enough; keep developing proposals and you will have to make a separate post just with all the stuff you are helping out on lol. There is a certain length where it becomes overwhelming to new users as well, and i think that you may just about be on the cusp.

        4. Yes the mod queue idea specifically. I have seen new forums with initial 5 posts being queue'd and you really need to get those 5 out of the way before you can actually partake and be part of a dynamic conversation rather than your post showing up 5 hours later when a mod logs on. Keeping it simple with a ban length (1 day, 2 day, 3 day, 5 day, 7 day options for mods to hand out) per infraction and once you reach X days then it becomes a permaban. Pretty simple clear cut way of determining when a person has gone too far too many times.

        See ya in game a bit later, hope this is taken as constructive rather than me picking apart your hard work!

    • #5
      Please do not change the chaos that is the current forums. This helps when I am bored at work and floating through the different forums to find something interesting to respond to. If I knew where everything was, I would spend less times on the forums.