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The Disciplinary Process
We have stated numerous times that we will explain what is in your warning thread if you ask. There seems to be the assumption that we will not.

I apologize If I'm not addressing the other points made, but that in specific seems to be a gross misunderstanding given how it has been brought up several times in this thread.
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(03-23-2013, 01:33 PM)Hexproof Wrote: It's downright insulting, really.

Respectfully, what is downright insulting is to have my integrity questioned in such a blanket fashion or to be compared to corrupt GMs or practices of years past by people I do not know or who have not even bothered to get to know me. I won't speak for anyone else but myself in this, but as a relative newcomer to CotH and one of the newest GMs, I am finding a lot of this difficult to swallow.
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Mm. I was hoping to stay out of this mess, but I suddenly feel compelled to write something.

Y'know, it took me a whole seven months after I left to drag up the nerve to come back. I only really did it because a select few (you all probably know who you are by now) wanted me to come back and visit and RP. So I did. It was some of the best times I've had in a while -- while it lasted. Loved it.

But this? This really makes me question that decision (disregard the fact that as quickly as I came, I'm leaving again of not-my-own-choice). The GM team really does a lot for this server; let's face it, were there no GMs, this server probably wouldn't exist anymore. Not taking credit away from Grakor and Kret, but neither of them have the time or the desire to be its only police force, its only builders, its biggest event-runners, what-have-you. They simply can't do it all. But a good enough number of GMs can. They keep this place running a lot of the time, and clean up the messes that people leave behind. And what do they get in return?

A big slap in the face.

There was a point in time when I was among those nay-sayers who would walk all over the GMs for every decision they made. I wisened up after a while, and moved on from that group of people I surrounded myself with. I realized how much the staff actually does for us as players. I've been in the Forum Helper seat, as well; I've seen how it works from a closer perspective than many get. It's really not as bad as it's made out to be. And I feel like all we (yes, we, as a community) are giving them is a whole heap of caustic responses that are getting us nowhere and only leaving everyone all bent-up and frustrated over this. So please, let's stop all this and give the GM team the benefit of the doubt; they're not the devils and demons that people seem to think they are; there's no great conspiracy that's there to take over the world; they're people, like everyone else, and they have feelings, too.

Rigley Wrote:But I feel that as long as this sort of attitude is held about us, then there's no real point in attempting to plead our case.
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[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9bZkp7q19f0[/youtube]
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(03-23-2013, 01:46 PM)Caravan Wrote:
(03-23-2013, 01:33 PM)Hexproof Wrote: It's downright insulting, really.

Respectfully, what is downright insulting is to have my integrity questioned in such a blanket fashion or to be compared to corrupt GMs or practices of years past by people I do not know or who have not even bothered to get to know me. I won't speak for anyone else but myself in this, but as a relative newcomer to CotH and one of the newest GMs, I am finding a lot of this difficult to believe.

I'm not arguing that I shouldn't trust you as a person and I feel it's a bit unfair to take that mistrust as a personal attack. I do understand entirely where you're coming from.

I'm arguing that on the whole I don't believe it's fair to expect trust as an authority figure when you're entering a post that has had difficulties being trustworthy in the past.

I don't believe anyone's integrity should ever be unquestioned. It's the sort of reputation that should be earned. Everyone deserves respect, but trust should always be earned.


muahaha8 Wrote:So please, let's stop all this and give the GM team the benefit of the doubt; they're not the devils and demons that people seem to think they are; there's no great conspiracy that's there to take over the world; they're people, like everyone else, and they have feelings, too.

This only furthers my point. Any issue we take (or at least that I take) with how things are run is instantly perceived as an assault on someone's character. I'm not saying they're monsters or anything of the like. I've met most of the staff at least once and by and large I am convinced they are good people. Being a good person doesn't make you immune to mistakes, though.

The staff are people just like we are. They have feelings and they're also not perfect. As such I trust and like most of them as people, but as far as running things, I stand by my belief that anyone expecting unquestioning, unwavering trust when everything they do is shrouded in secrecy and debate... Well I maintain that it is unfair and insulting.
As someone wise once said, the important thing is never to be fearless or confident. Most people have more than enough trouble with both. The trick is to fake it, because if you learn to fake it properly, it's the same thing as actually having confidence.
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Edited per request.
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Hrm.

I'll attempt to put this as well as I can.

There have been numerous occasions in the past when members of the community have felt the banning of their friends to be unfair. They only heard one side of the story. Hence the dramamongering, rumormongering, etc. I'm sure you're familiar with the situation. You abide by the rules, or so you think, and your friend gets banned. You go 'Wat. Why?! This doesn't make any sense...'

So, you go ask 'em about it. And they tell you their side.

But you can't exactly go to the GMs to learn their version, now can you? A mere set of numbers on the Account Management site hardly reveal anything.

Look, it'd reduce drama a thousandfold if people could actually see offenses and go 'Oh yeah. X did act badly. /shrug. Well, I guess that's that...' as opposed to 'BUT HE SAYS IT'S 4NORAISINS!'.

Fact of the matter is, people don't trust each-other in an online environment, and for good reason. Admittedly, CoTH has been anything but untrustworthy, with some of the nicest people I've ever had the privilege of meeting being on it. But. Not everyone's experience is like mine.

And on the other hand I have been surprised, and disgusted, at times, by what I have found. I really did not expect to see some of the things I've seen, and consider that I'm quite jaded when it comes to internet-related stuff.

I guess no community is lacking in flaws. But I'd like to think CoTH is one of the better ones in that respect. I enjoy it. Or, did and still cling to those times. It was a sad, sad day when I was told that CoTH has changed as regards the RP. Not all of it, mind you, just some of the stuff that goes on. But the changes the management and policies have undertaken have been majorly positive. There has really never been a time when the team was so open to discussion as now.

Which is why now we discuss these things. Embrace openness and understanding. Do not be afraid to take it one step further.

Consider the situation of the third party. Neither the banned nor the banner, but someone observing the proceedings. 'Yeah, they did that and deserved it. I agree with the course of action taken.' is a much better reaction than 'Wat. Why were they banned?! This doesn't make any sense! Why's it all handled so under the rug? I didn't even know X was banned!' etc.

I'm not advocating pointing out who people sending logs to GMs are. That would just be stupid. I also do not advocate making logs public. That would be bad. Instead, simply explain, in great and comprehensive detail, -what the person did wrong-. For everyone to see.

Also... On a closing note, there is something that peeves me. Greatly. The inability to separate between the game and the rest of the interwebs. This is just my point of view, but what happens on CoTH, stays on CoTH. And what happens outside, stays outside. Much like the separation of IC and OOC, the separation of CoTH and the rest is absolute, for me.

So, while on Skype I can be a total arse to someone(Because Skype lacks any given ruleset), it doesn't mean I won't abide by CoTH's rules(And those still apply to strictly CoTH-related Skype channels). It's your choice who you give your ID to, and you can block people. So, the complaint about Skype-stalking is relatively invalid. Vice versa applies too. Someone that's been banned on CoTH may be a totally swell person outside the community, or within other communities. It's simply not interrelated.

'OOH, I KNOW WHAT YOU DID ON <X-SERVER>! YOU WERE MEAN TO ME THERE, GMS BAN HE!' is not a valid complaint. Yes, I'm taking it humorously, perhaps even derisively, but you know perfectly well what I mean. CoTH is not a job which you never leave. Similarly, someone breaking the rules of CoTH, even though outside it they're a totally cool person, deserves punishment for their deeds - ON COTH. It's hubris to think anyone can police circumstances that exist outside the reach of the server.

While on CoTH, you're 'on the record'. While off it, it doesn't matter what you do because it's unrelated to it.

Oh, and keep in mind. I can disagree with people and like them just fine. I don't actively hate anyone, just because I disagree with them. I respect the right of others to hold differing opinions to my own, just as they respect mine to hold a different opinion than theirs. You can respect and disagree with a person at the same time. It's honorable, even, to do so. After all, it's our number one rule...
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We aren't saying anything vile; there's no need for ad hominem. I don't think the staff is entitled to our trust, and disagree with how the bannings are handled because I feel the presence of due process is tenuous at best. I'm not crying out against the rules, but I am dissenting a matter of internal policy because it's against my principles.

I think the GMs are by and large good people; I think their intentions are either noble, or harmless. They do good things for the server, which I think I and everyone else here appreciates. That doesn't mean I'm not going to argue with them if I disagree with them.

You're knocking down straw men, I think.
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@Rensin

Please edit your post and remain civil during this discussion.
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Done.
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So, let's return to the point at hand. If you think we're not handling it well due to too much secrecy, how would you change it? Realistically.

Being open about ban reasons? We're as open as we can be, I think. I will answer questions on bans (within a reasonable amount of context) if someone is curious enough to ask. We also provide the rules broken by said person on the account management site. We're NOT going to just open up warning threads for reasons outlined already, and I'm not just going to publicly post information when someone is banned because I have no desire to shame them on top of that.

So, what are you after, exactly? That can be done, I mean.
Have you hugged an orc today?
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I would've agreed with those who would have the GMs under closer scrutiny. The only reason I have chosen a side, to call it that, is because at this point very few are standing up. I am furious such as hell hath no, but I am not going to aim my aggression at people. At least, I hope I won't.

Quote:"People fail to get along because they fear each other; they fear each other because they don't know each other; they don't know each other because they have not communicated with each other."

If someone, by some relation, think I am comparing them to MLK's enemies . . . Well, I am sorry, but I'm at least comparing my stance on this to his. I stand by the ones who, in this particular thread, are the victims. If anything is unfair, it's that these people are shunned for doing as best as they can. If you truly believe they are doing their best, then ask no more. I don't think anyone else is better qualified, and if so, they've yet to reveal themselves to me. I won't complain about work I know I couldn't do better.

Bottom line is; Communicate. Get to know each other. I don't know if this is fear or hate, but it's at least nothing good.
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(03-23-2013, 02:20 PM)Grakor456 Wrote: So, let's return to the point at hand. If you think we're not handling it well due to too much secrecy, how would you change it? Realistically.

Being open about ban reasons? We're as open as we can be, I think. I will answer questions on bans (within a reasonable amount of context) if someone is curious enough to ask. We also provide the rules broken by said person on the account management site. We're NOT going to just open up warning threads for reasons outlined already, and I'm not just going to publicly post information when someone is banned because I have no desire to shame them on top of that.

So, what are you after, exactly? That can be done, I mean.

For the most part I don't think any "major overhaul" is in order. Under ideal circumstances I actually like the system and feel it's entirely reasonable. My main issue is and was that there seems to be this belief that someone can't be at fault without knowing full well they've done something wrong. It's been said before in this thread and I'll bring it up again: I feel the players should get formal notice when they've done something "permanent record-worthy".

This wouldn't need to be anything massive, and while in theory it's completely unnecessary, I think giving it a bit of time and then sending a PM along the lines of "A week or so ago you were written up for X. Try to do better." could go a long way towards the perceived transparency with the GM team.

My main reason for feeling this is necessary at all is because in past experiences a lot of the "pulling aside and talking to" is either not understood as such, or (and I'm not making accusations so much as going to the conclusion that would make sense from my understanding of events) not happening at all. It gets even cloudier if the player in question has GM friends, or when things happen on or off-server.

I really don't see the drama that would come, or the harm to be seen from being told when we make a mistake. If anything knowing I was written up would at least make me certain to talk to a GM about it, or to re-evaluate what I've been doing.

It wouldn't need to be "So and so reported you for X" or anything like that, and yes people could probably discern who reported them if it got bad enough, but I like to operate on the assumption that this simple amount of clarity would still do more good than harm, allowing for significantly less misunderstanding or muddy waters when it comes to "Did X make a mistake?" or "Why was I banned?"

Publicly? I wouldn't change much. People are entitled to their privacy, but a formal request for information about your friend's ban shouldn't be impossible.

Edit: Wow. Pretty glaring little mix up of words that I fixed.
As someone wise once said, the important thing is never to be fearless or confident. Most people have more than enough trouble with both. The trick is to fake it, because if you learn to fake it properly, it's the same thing as actually having confidence.
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I hope you're happy.

P.S.: I hope you don't think any less of me, but . . . This is just too much. This is going too far.
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Aww...

Come on.
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In regards to the whole discussion regarding friends being banned.

If they're not telling you what they did, then it's not our responsibility to pass on to whom it does not concern. I can assure you we approach people and present them with what they've done wrong for us to approach them in such a manner in the first place. We do not just walk up to someone and slap a "Banned" sticker on their forehead, leaving them in the blind. Despite what seems to obviously have been rumored. If it has at all been the case, said "Banned" sticker has either been mentioned to the one about to recieve it before it was put on there, or it came with a list or explanation of exactly why the sticker is now suddenly there.

Again; It is not our responsibility to pass on that which your friends do not want to talk about. And if it helps, and if people have these thoughts about us, we do not rub our hands together and cackle whenever we ban someone. Nor do we ban someone just because. We always present a reason for the ban, linking to one or more rules that everyone on the server has read (Or so they claim) In other words; We have nothing to gain from banning someone just because, if anything it'd only harm our already, as it would seem, poor standing within the community. If rumors are being spread saying otherwise, then I'm saddened, really, even moreso that they might be believed.

This might be the poorest resemblance ever, but I'll try it nonetheless. Sometimes, the GM team may seem like a court, there's a judge, and the jury. Nobody put the jury (In this case, the judge would also be part of the GM team and therefor be in the room with the jury) knows what goes on behind, and what verdict was reached, behind the door. Nobody ever will. It's to save everyone, not just the one who's being "judged" so to speak, which is again, a horrible example perhaps, but there are just certain things we wouldn't ever publicly do or reveal. As it is with many other things in our own, real lifes beyond CotH. Unfair? To an extent, from certain points of view.

(This post, is from me, and holds my views and should not be drawn to any other member on the GM team - If they share my views on certain points, then that's still not a reason to point any fingers for this post, besides at me. Nor am I trying to stab -anyone- with this personally, if you have a beef with me, then I'm sorry, but this is not meant to spite anyone, if anyone percieves it as such, I am sorry that you feel that way.)
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Common Sense; Questionable, still there.
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