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Lox Laments: Player Reports
#1
Hello everyone.

Yes, I know I'm supposed to be away. I just want to address this one thing that has been bothering me for a while and I keep seeing brought up or mentioned by people all around the community, the chat rooms...

In short, I see people mentioning that the community has been unfriendly, that they have issues with certain groups, attitudes go unchecked and people complain about no one ever doing anything about any of these problems. The issue here, for me, is... we don't get any reports about any of these things. Once or twice we get someone mentioning in second hand that something's going on somewhere, but people are dreadfully bad at actually sending in any concrete reports (with proof; please, people, get the Elephant addon). We can't really act on hearsay alone when it comes to player to player or even player to GM issues.

Though, this post isn't to rant on about that people don't report enough. It's more to ask the community what they believe could make reporting easier.

What, exactly, is it that scares you or otherwise prevents you from reporting in when something is happening?

The anonymity? Lack of faith in the GM team? Not knowing which GM to send it in to? Not daring to post it in the Private Discussion forum? Bad blood or bad experiences in the past? Too high expectations on the follow-ups of your reports? Not wanting to get other players, or your friends, in trouble? Afraid that the people you report will come back to get you for it, player or GM?

Why do people not report?

What can we do to help make the process easier?

I mean... We can't fix any problems unless people show us clearly where the problems are. Not even then can the problems be fixed, sometimes. But sending in a report is a good start to solving the issue, and the GM team would really love to see more people report and help us help the community. That's why we're here. This is your community and I believe it's in your interest to help us enforce the rules that are put in place here for the sake of everyone who plays and hangs out here on the server.

So...

How can we make it easier for people to send in their reports and concerns?
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#2
Sometimes, the people just don't really do anything wrong. When I don't report something, it's because they are doing something grating that they won't get in trouble for.

I guess you could say when it comes down to it, it can feel like "Why bother, it'll take months before anything happens if it does" in my case. However, I'm probably also one of the people that reports a -lot- of things, but... there's also a lot I don't report anymore because it can feel like sometimes nothing is being done.
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#3
A possible idea would be to open a report box on the forums, where users type in their report and it is sent to the GM staff, non-anonymously, to handle in private. One of the inherent issues with reporting right now is that PMing someone on the staff doesn't guarantee you've been seen or heard efficiently. A sort of 'suggestion box' of reports would be worth considering, I believe, for encouraging players to step forward against rule breaking.
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#4
I'll say in response to Rensin as well that... Yes, sometimes we're slow. Other times, no action is taken because when the situation has been analyzed and broken down, we might not find anything that is actually worth doing anything about. Like if we don't see any rules broken, or if the context tells us more of what went on. There are plenty of different reasons for why things might not happen even if things are reported, but all reports that are sent in to the GMs are recorded.

... And, then again, even if something does happen, it might not be terribly obvious. ;P
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#5
I'll point out that the best resolutions to conflicts and issues are those that you don't see. As in, if a problem can be solved without a ban or some public shaming of an individual, that's typically the best solution that anyone can hope for. Yes, sometimes stuff is slow. Other times you don't see the outcome, and unless we were to start publicly decrying 'This person broke this rule, and we lectured them', you won't see the outcome unless they're banned or suspended.

In most situations we don't want you to see the ramifications of our intervention. Because in those situations the matter at hand is extreme, or the person is so non-compliant that we -have- to be overt in our punitive measures.

Of course, I say this as someone who hasn't been overly active for the last two months. But we had the same complaints then, and I think that my notation here still holds some water.
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#6
Being a player here, I haven't particularly been exposed to many things worth reporting.
Although, when there is something worth reporting, I hold faith that those involved can be mature enough to work it out, and that I shouldn't need to be the person to report things. If things get to such severity that I need assistance with it, I always find it easy to '.gm ingame' and whisper the nearest source of help.
As far as reporting goes.

Anski Wrote:A possible idea would be to open a report box on the forums, where users type in their report and it is sent to the GM staff, non-anonymously, to handle in private. One of the inherent issues with reporting right now is that PMing someone on the staff doesn't guarantee you've been seen or heard efficiently. A sort of 'suggestion box' of reports would be worth considering, I believe, for encouraging players to step forward against rule breaking.

I give massive thumbs up to this. Not only can the GMs use this sort of resource to efficiently hear about, help with, and deal with reported problems, they can also use this resource to keep tabs on what's being reported. If, say, 20 people report a case of racism, and only a handful report another sort of destructive behavior, then the GM team knows that they need to take action against racism, because it is the main cause of the reports.

While there is no thing you can implement that will lure more people to report things, people may be slightly more drawn to it if they see that it is effective. I'd say, from a personal viewpoint, that it'd be best to take several different approaches to this question, and see which solution ends up being the most effective, and then permanently implement said mechanic.

(Although, from what I see, the GM team does a fantastic job of responding to and solving problems that are brought up already.)
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#7
Sometimes though, the best solution, Rigley, as it's seen? Doesn't fix the problem the person originally had. What happens then, is that we perceive "Oh, I reported so and so three weeks ago for something they are doing again... this is the third time that I'd be reporting them. Forget it, the last two times nothing really happened." I think that in some cases, there's a little TOO much over-analysis rather than action when it comes to handling someone. Sure, the GM's may perceive a change on their end, but the players may not see it like you guys do.

There's little information given as to who got what punishment, and why. I know there's a reason for that, but along with this comes those feelings of "Why bother." It can be rather frustrating on the other end.
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#8
So, how do we make it easier to make these reports anyway? Like I've mentioned before, not all of the reports will definitely lead to something being done and even if something's done, it's not always something that'll show so everyone knows it. We don't want to start hanging people out in public, which is why we're trying to keep it down in the first place. It causes more damage than it fixes any problems. ... But, this discussion really isn't about the GM team's transparency when it comes to disciplinary actions and whatnot.

Point being... If people keep reporting, we get more material. The more material we get, the more powerful action we can take if nothing changes. On a first or second offense, it's unlikely that anything will actually happen unless it's something very serious. And, just because they keep behaving in the same way that you reported them for in the first place, that doesn't mean we haven't taken any action. ... Just that the individual might not be listening to us as much as we'd have initially hoped and it'd certainly help us out if people let us know, in that case.
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#9
(09-11-2013, 08:30 AM)Loxmardin Wrote: The anonymity? Lack of faith in the GM team? Not knowing which GM to send it in to? Not daring to post it in the Private Discussion forum? Bad blood or bad experiences in the past? Too high expectations on the follow-ups of your reports? Not wanting to get other players, or your friends, in trouble? Afraid that the people you report will come back to get you for it, player or GM?

I'm just going to say you nailed my motivation down right to the dot. I haven't had pleasant past encounters with GMs when it comes to handling a player report (and this is not always their fault), or anything drama related. I've heard stories from good friends of mine too, and probably shouldn't of. With all due respect for them as individuals, my faith is not of pristine quality in their GM abilities.
Hand me some feedback!
Spoiler:
Quote:I don’t want you to protest,
I don’t want you to riot,
I don’t want you to write to your congressman because I wouldn’t know what to tell you to write.
I don’t know what to do about the depression and
the inflation and the crime in the Streets.
All I know is that first, you’ve got to get mad.

You’ve got to say:
I’m a Human being God damn it !
*MY LIFE HAS VALUE!*
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#10
Well, hopefully issues like that can be presented to us as well so we can sort them out. Issues have a habit of not going anywhere if people don't discuss them with us.

... So, again.

What can we do to make it easier?
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#11
Anski Wrote:A possible idea would be to open a report box on the forums, where users type in their report and it is sent to the GM staff, non-anonymously, to handle in private. One of the inherent issues with reporting right now is that PMing someone on the staff doesn't guarantee you've been seen or heard efficiently. A sort of 'suggestion box' of reports would be worth considering, I believe, for encouraging players to step forward against rule breaking.

Once again thumb-upping this. This would make it easier. :)
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#12
(09-11-2013, 01:14 PM)Loxmardin Wrote: Well, hopefully issues like that can be presented to us as well so we can sort them out. Issues have a habit of not going anywhere if people don't discuss them with us.

... So, again.

What can we do to make it easier?

I personally believe those issues will always exist, sadly. The solution would probably be to let the people reporting it know what happened or how it was dealt with, but that would lead to rumor mongoring and more of the crap-talk. Problem is--- I think it's a catch-22. You can't make everyone happy all the time, cliques will always exist, and there's always going to be gossip... among players, and even the GM team.

We've all seen it or even taken part in it. CoTH isn't -always- welcoming, as much as we all hate to admit it.
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#13
(09-11-2013, 08:30 AM)Loxmardin Wrote: In short, I see people mentioning that the community has been unfriendly

This troubles me the most, of all the things in the OP, as being a bit sour isn't any "real" reason for moderator intervention in any online community. And yet, I know people will say such things. When I first logged into CotH for the first time, I got seemingly incessant in-game whispers from some guy talking about how terrible the community here was and that I should leave the server.
What I took from that rant was not that this place was, in fact, such a horrible place, but that he had become so emotionally invested in the community and used proper grammar that I could likely have a different and enjoyable experience on this server.

That being said, I tend to have this magic ability to not be exposed to the worse side of any online community I participate with. Many times, I've logged in to a forum or IRC or the likes, ask where so-and-so is, and get told that they got a ban that everyone agrees has been a long time coming, though I never saw any of this undesirable behavior.
I feel like the same thing must be happening around on CotH, as here I am, blissfully unaware of the unpleasantness other people seem to be experiencing here, while I wind up again befriending the mod peeps and generally having a nice time. If I do something that seems dumb or unpleasant on the server, a friend who may or may not happen to be a GM might mention it passingly in conversation and I get the gist and refrain from doing it again. I've never really had a hammer brought down on me, so I don't have any anxiety over labels of who is "in charge."

I mean, of course I have my own personal peeves with the community; there's a permeating anxiety surrounding the supposed "slippery slope," and undue fear always rubs me the wrong way. But that's just a characteristic of the server that I feel I have to deal with if I want the good in the server, so I deal.

That's the basics of what I experience on this server, but what I don't understand is what are other people experiencing that I'm not? If people are upset or frustrated by the server, a different philosophy on internet interaction can only account for so much. Are people being bullied? Is there another side of my CotH friends that I simply never see? Am I doing something that people are interpreting as mean or rude or the likes? I have a "resting B**** face" IRL, and many of my best friends have admitted that they thought I hated them at first. I wouldn't be surprised if I managed something like that on the internet, as well. (BTW, if anyone on CotH thinks I hate them, I don't)

I suppose my point here is that it might be worth it for everyone to be a little more talkative about what their experience on the server is like in general, especially if they have points of contention. My CotH "Normal" obviously isn't the same as everyone else's.

I think it might be worth it to make a(n optional) survey for CotH users in order to better understand everyone's personal "normal" experience. Address peoples use of the forums, if they do use them at all, if they use guilds, the private discussion, or the likes. How they find RP, if they connect to other CotH users through outside means. (skype, teamspeak, etc)
Yes, I was a TA for the business professors in college, why do you ask?
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#14
---There's one thing I'll bring up too, that I've seen that bothers me, with Skype and other things.





If it happens outside of CoTH, CoTH shouldn't get involved. :\ That's my opinion, at least. This might be a completely separate point, but it's one that I feel I should bring up. I've stopped inviting certain people to Skype chats because... they try to police it, and that -really- bothers me.
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#15
Can't help but echo Rensi- ... Harmonic there.

On another point, could just simply let people know something was taken are of. Just a quick little "You're issue was looked over." You don't have to say what happened. You don't even have to say if you did anything. Just let them know the problem was looked at. That would be enough for me.

On another note. That survey idea. I think that should be used. That would tell a lot on what has been going on.
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