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  #21  
Old May 3rd, 2010, 11:00 AM
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Soyweiser Soyweiser is offline
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Default Re: Night of the Long Knives?

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Originally Posted by reverend View Post
Still I say it's bad PR to ban him and not provide ANY information - letting rumours and speculation run rampant, then closing those threads as well.
Perhaps creating a subforum in which infractions and bans are listed is an idea.
  #22  
Old May 3rd, 2010, 11:12 AM
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Default Re: Night of the Long Knives?

This community is not big or robust enough to lose the few people with enough drive to really contribute to it. Got no idea about the details of what happened, and I don't really care. Sombre was an overwhelming net positive for the community and I really can't imagine doing most anything in a single thread to change that outside of something illegal. Because he broke the forum rules? I don't think its really all that much of an exaggeration to say this sort of thing (along with all the ripple effects) is a catastrophic blow to a community that possibly can't take it. Presumably the "forum rules" are there to protect and nurture this community but its not the mods that make the community, and it's not Sombre that's assaulting it.

This is *our* forum. The people who write the mods, the people who write the guides, the people who help the newbs start games. The forum is created 100% by this community. You can argue that it's your site, but I promise if people don't feel like this is their community it is going to dry up very quickly. While you've got the undeniable power to pull the plug, you are hosting *our* community and banning people contrary to what the community wants is a surefire way to very rapidly kill it.
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  #23  
Old May 3rd, 2010, 11:17 AM

Maerlande Maerlande is offline
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Default Re: Night of the Long Knives?

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Originally Posted by Annette View Post
Maer,

I greatly appreciate your productive post. You are correct - while these forums are not a profit center for Shrapnel Games, they do exist as a sales tool. Two very important components of the tool are our customers who contribute valuable content and our moderators who volunteer their time to help us maintain a peaceful, productive environment. Without their unpaid help, Shrapnel Games would have a difficult time keeping these forums open for our customers' use.

We all understand that tempers will flare and posts will be made that violate the rules we've put in place. And we appreciate cooperation when a moderator must step in to calm things down. The problem in this situation, and the reason I exercised our right to escalate beyond our infraction system, is that Sombre indicated to us that he did not intend to honor our requests to follow the standards we expect of all our users and that he would ignore future private messages asking him to refrain from using personal attacks. Would a temporary ban change his mind? So we're faced with the question, do we allow one user to post in a manner that we would not tolerate from anyone else?
Well Annette. I think your posted policy of 2 temporary bans leading to a permanent ban would have been quite sufficient in this case. Put Sombre on probation. If he doesn't want to then follow the rules you've got a much stronger case. If the plan was to reduce disruption by removing a disruptive influence it failed miserably. Sombre's level of disruption is rarely that bad. Besides, a bit of disruption provides drama and keeps excitement going.

Unless I'm mistaken I didn't suggest that Sombre get off without consequence. But this decision to permanently ban him is extreme and I strongly believe it failed to serve your purposes. It also clearly pissed me off a lot. If you permanently banned me for the same infraction I'd work very hard to move all my friends and games over to Something Awful or some other dominions 3 environment. But I prefer to stay here.

When I acted in much the same manner as Sombre, you gave me a temporary ban. And honestly, when I go on a terror run here I make a much bigger mess than Sombre. Look at last night. The only difference appears to be I didn't tell you that I won't follow the rules in the future. But my offence was significantly greater than Sombre's. I got a polite warning this morning and replied positively. I stopped spamming.

Should you make a special case for certain members of this community? Why not? You have all the power and can rewrite the rules as required. You own these boards. The question is really why make a special case for Sombre. Because he's important to this community. Besides, you made a special case already. You immediately permanently banned him for what could very well be just a fit of anger.
  #24  
Old May 3rd, 2010, 11:28 AM

Valerius Valerius is offline
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Default Re: Night of the Long Knives?

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Originally Posted by Peter Ebbesen View Post
And yes... I too have valued Sombre's positive contributions to this community but I value a well-moderated forum even more.
Well said.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Annette View Post
The problem in this situation, and the reason I exercised our right to escalate beyond our infraction system, is that Sombre indicated to us that he did not intend to honor our requests to follow the standards we expect of all our users and that he would ignore future private messages asking him to refrain from using personal attacks. Would a temporary ban change his mind? So we're faced with the question, do we allow one user to post in a manner that we would not tolerate from anyone else?
The strange thing is that Sombre is being presented as a victim. He was asked to stop making personal attacks and refused to do so. I gather his defenders would say that the importance of his contributions outweighs the importance of forum rules. I disagree. To me, having the type of civilized forums Peter Ebessen refers to is more important (even than something crucial to the MP community like the hosting llamabeast and Gandalf provide).
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  #25  
Old May 3rd, 2010, 11:32 AM

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Default Re: Night of the Long Knives?

Huh, Annette trying to derail discussion again and blame others. Did we not see it before?

We, as a community, were patient when Shrapnel decided to transform forums. They did things that should never happen - long outage, huge data transfer problems, etc etc. But we were promised that new forums will bring new and better quality. But in exchange we got broken functionality, PM limits, message countdowns even for experienced users, lame social addons, etc, etc. And on top total ignorance of Shrapnel, including you, Annette.

And now you are trying to use that trick again? "Make the community better, purge the evil element"? And where will it stop? Ban everyone that thinks Shrapnel is bad company [that would be everyone?]? Ban everyone that breaks rules? Oh, wait, wouldn't it mean banning mods and you, Annetter too? You know, for allowing some users to break rules? I'm pretty sure you know what I'm talking about Shrapnel loves some forum trolls and has different rules for them.

Of course Maerlande was not serious about business approach - that would mean he really thinks that Shrapnel has any idea about making money and taking care of customers. You just happen to own rights to Dominions. And Illwinter seems to be not focused at all on sales etc. Is there anything Shrapnel did to make dominions popular? I really doubt it. It's just community selling it. And you are getting money only because of us. And now you are trying to pay back this way...
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  #26  
Old May 3rd, 2010, 11:32 AM

Rookierookie Rookierookie is offline
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Default Re: Night of the Long Knives?

Quote:
The only difference appears to be I didn't tell you that I won't follow the rules in the future.
I think that might be a major difference, just a hint.

Quote:
Should you make a special case for certain members of this community? Why not? You have all the power and can rewrite the rules as required. You own these boards. The question is really why make a special case for Sombre. Because he's important to this community.
Quote:
Oh, wait, wouldn't it mean banning mods and you, Annetter too? You know, for allowing some users to break rules? I'm pretty sure you know what I'm talking about Shrapnel loves some forum trolls and has different rules for them.
Now I wonder, if they do have to listen to the users, which side should they listen to.


This incident isn't something unique to these forums. Hell, I almost got kicked out of school once for doing something quite similiar. This isn't school, and it's not like one forum will make much of a difference in your life or anything.

Frankly, if I'm not happy at how a site runs things, I'm just going to walk away and never give a second glance back, because they don't deserve my attention. This isn't school or a job, where you don't really have the freedom to walk away when you want to. That's what Burnsaber says he will do in another thread, and I respect that. It's fruitless to call the people you aren't happy with "Nazis" or such and then try to get them to listen, because if they were they would certainly not listen to you, by definition. To lash out at unrelated passersby and anybody who isn't in your in-group, as some people did last night, is really quite pathetic. Makes it look as though you are taking your anger out on other people because you couldn't shake your main target.

Last edited by Rookierookie; May 3rd, 2010 at 11:54 AM..
  #27  
Old May 3rd, 2010, 11:45 AM

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Default Re: Night of the Long Knives?

I could be wrong, but I strongly suspect that the "rules" mean little or nothing to the majority of the members of this community. They certainly don't mean a thing to me... but I rarely would consider doing something outside of most of those "rules" because, in general, they represent orderly conduct.

Perhaps Shrapnel took what Sombre said out of context of his normal behaviour. As has been said, he "can be a bit of p***k at times, but I've always just seen him as a cantankerous curmedgeonly type that does amazing work."

So, he's stepped out of line how frequently and how severely? Has his conduct actually been outside of forum guidelins on a consistent basis? No... but not because he gives a hoot about the rules. This comes across as a power trip along the lines of, "if you can't respect the rules because we made them, you're out of here."
  #28  
Old May 3rd, 2010, 11:56 AM
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Default Re: Night of the Long Knives?

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Originally Posted by Rookierookie View Post
Quote:
The only difference appears to be I didn't tell you that I won't follow the rules in the future.
I think that might be a major difference, just a hint.
You're presuming that rules deserve to be followed simply because they are rules. That's ridiculous.

Quote:
Frankly, if I'm not happy at how a site runs things, I'm just going to walk away and never give a second glance back, because they don't deserve my attention.
I suspect that most of us are quite happy with Illwinter, but despise Shrapnel for being ineffective and incompetent. It was what, six years before Shrapnel finally admitted that they had made a mistake by not selling Dominions in digital form?. It's funny how Gandalf stopped spouting the party line about how physical media and manuals prevents piracy as soon as the game was available for download.
  #29  
Old May 3rd, 2010, 12:08 PM
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Default Re: Night of the Long Knives?

( Just learned about this whole episode from this thread and the link that was given. )

I couldn't have phrased my opinion any better than Baalz said it.
I've just this tiny bit to add -
I do like the forum's overall tone to be as polite and constructive is it's generally is and I appreciate both the mods. efforts to that end and the natural good will of most players to keep it that way.
I think permanent ban should only be applied in extreme cases and according to the forum’s stated 3-strikes-and-you’re-out-rule. Extreme cases in my dictionary are, cheating, advocating for piracy, spamming, consistently stalking other player/s etc.
This doesn’t seem to be the case here.
I would like to humbly ask that Sombre’s sentence be sweetened. Please temp ban him as per the forum rules. Consider this, if you will, an act in favor of the community.
We would think no less of you, on the contrary we will appreciate and respect you more for that!
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  #30  
Old May 3rd, 2010, 12:08 PM

Rookierookie Rookierookie is offline
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Default Re: Night of the Long Knives?

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Originally Posted by Graeme Dice View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rookierookie View Post
Quote:
The only difference appears to be I didn't tell you that I won't follow the rules in the future.
I think that might be a major difference, just a hint.
You're presuming that rules deserve to be followed simply because they are rules. That's ridiculous.
When I'm in somebody else's place I do follow the rules, even if it is to speak in 1337 24/7. Like I said, if I'm not happy with the rules, I can perfectly leave with no cost to myself. This isn't a situation where I might lose money or sacrifice my career by just turning away and leave.

Maybe you consider this your home, but I don't. I follow the rules here because I don't have to follow them outside of what little time I spend on the boards, and if I don't like the rules, I lose nothing by not coming here.

For what's worth, I actually don't think Sombre's perm ban was appropriate for the offense, from what information I've been able to gather. But the reactions of some of the other members are really quite jarring, for example in the communions thread last night.
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