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The Disciplinary Process
After all this I can't bring myself to wish anything ill towards any of you. You've disarmed me, and pleading for mercy hasn't yielded any result. I'm completely without any way to defend my friends and there's nothing I can say that will change that. Words are all I have and they fall on deaf ears. I want everyone to get along and be nice to each other.

We came here to play, or did you forget? It's not a game anymore, it's become a scheme where people are always trying to get one step ahead of each other - without a single thought given to how far we could get if we tried to help each other instead of pushing each other aside. I love CoTH, I love it's playerbase, and I love it's GMs. It's a place where I can put my skills to use and let my creativity flow free. It's the only place where I can meet people who share my interests. Friends I have in copious amounts, but this is a matter about fitting in - about being with my equals.

This won't change anything, though. I can pour out my heart if I want, and that's just it. I know what it's like. I spend several hours of my day trying to please others, I struggle to make life just a little bit more easy for others. The GMs work much the same way, and I understand that. All they do, they do because they have dreams, and they have hopes and ambitions for what this server can become.

I don't know what to do right now. I want to log off, but then again, part of me is scared of leaving and coming back to see that my world of dreams has become a nightmare.

The other part wants to change it all, but there's clearly nothing I can do. I am disarmed. I wish I could do more, though. I wish people would just stop and try to get along instead of all this.

I hate seeing people unhappy. Can't we for once do something about it, instead of arguing about who insults who and who hates who?

I rest my case. What we need is more communication.
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Someone explain to me how a role playing server is such a hotspot for distrust and tension?

I don't mean that sardonically, I genuinely want to know how we come to this. How is it we can so easily blow things completely out of proportion? Get so bent out of shape over... basically, nothing?

It's like, wow guys. Is CotH a perfect utopia? Hell naw. But the image you guys paint for the GM team is just... cruel. Really, that's the only word for it: cruel.

Maybe warning threads should be visible to the person in question. Maybe they shouldn't! Maybe it would cause hatred, maybe it would work out great! Who knows?

But you know what? That isn't the point here aanymore, is it? The GMs have explained, quite rationally, whhy they do everything they've been asked about. And that isn't good enough for you. This isn't a case of them doing something BRAZENLY WRONG and you challenging it- no.

This is you wanting to be right. You want them to be wrong. You're not discussing policy, you're repeatedly barraging with why you think you're right and they're wrong. If you wanted to keep this civil, then you'd accept the answers given, because they've been more than adequate. Even if you disagree with them, your arguing isn't going to CHANGE them. You wanted answers, and you got them. They are good answers, even if you disagree with them, and you should learn to take it and leave it at that, because the difference now is a matter of split opinions. You think one way, they thing the other way. Maybe, if ever, you became in charge of making rule policies, you could change it the way you like it.

But until then, stop being so selfish. This server bends over backwards for you as it is, the least you can do is respect the way things are done around here, so long as they're done appropriately. Which they are.
Your stories will always remain...
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... as will your valiant hearts.
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Wow, OK. I'm going to pretend most of the posts after I left are unrelated and now I can just try to re-integrate some sensible conversation in here. I'm punching my card in. Lets get dirty, ya'll.

(03-23-2013, 03:37 PM)Rowgen Wrote: I rest my case. What we need is more communication.

I'm not sure what the rest of your post said, but when I saw this I thought "well, wasn't that what we were talking about the whole time?"

If you want to know the grand schemes of my mind are, it's a place where the players can literally put their input and discuss real policies that will effect the server. They wont be the only ones, of course; but they'll have a say. All that GM talk on the policies like you guys say you do, bring that out so that the players can literally see the progress you guys make when you discuss those policies. But this requires, well, you know, acting maturely and setting the example for how players should act and resolve conflicts, make policy. . .

That's a huge way we could make things literally transparent for the players; they can follow up on the GM-only discussion and go to their own place to discuss that policy. . .Not sure how we'll do it (have a deadline and re-discuss the issue each reset? Maybe each year, I dunno) but that's probably not something I should figure out without input from everyone else.

Maybe that solution isn't the best-- maybe we should give it a test run. We don't have to do it, especially if there's a better system in place or something. But if we just brainstorm as a community and sort of try to work together to figure this out-- and when we do, lets fine tune the thing to the T-- and then we'll have something that might work out all these little kinks in our system already. And if it doesn't, then OK, it doesn't; we'll have to try something else.

I just think that if we end up doing this, we even out the playing field and just actually relax and see that there really isn't a difference between a GM and a player and that we all just wanna have fun our problems will solve themselves. (Now I'll talk about the posts from before) That whole conspiracy stuff. . .a joke. Everything that should be said on it should either be "Hey, I know that isn't what it really is but it definately LOOKS like that sometimes" or "it's a CotHraversy!", I mean, seriously now.

Sometimes I feel like the arguments GM's have in public look fabricated. Realize how I said "looked" fabricated and not "are". That's the difference, ya'll. Sometimes I think all of you guys who are inciting drama get together on Skype and say "how can we lock this thread, yo, lets make this a big deal and like, shut SourPuddle out so we can all wallow in our own filth hahahaha" and like grunts and GM's work as teams, perfectly melding their responses to be passive aggressive and undyingly mean and kind of illogical and misunderstanding all to cause a web of entropic disorder, so that this thread thereby becomes viable for "lockdown" and suddenly I'm out of business! (by the way, I don't really think you guys do that, haha).

So if that's not true, then I guarentee you all that other BS isn't true as well; and if it is, this isn't the way to solve it. Seriously.

Lets get back to actual discussion.
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(03-23-2013, 05:21 PM)Sourpuddle Wrote: If you want to know the grand schemes of my mind are, it's a place where the players can literally put their input and discuss real policies that will effect the server. They wont be the only ones, of course; but they'll have a say.

Players can have a say if they write clear, well-organized proposals, but not demands. Preferably in some place like the Private Discussion forum, only because it keeps the conversation specific to the proposal at hand rather than off-shooting (as this thread has) to unrelated things. Can this be done in public? Sure, but as it goes with most public dialogues, people will tack on their own ideas that may completely detract from the original post and make the original post get lost. Or, if you do not want it to be discussed with the GMs, players are always, always welcome to contact Kretol or Grakor directly.

So far, I've rarely, if ever, seen something like this.
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This will be my last post on the matter, and I will make it short:

I respect the GM team and understand they do a lot for the server. Perhaps some people feel differently but I think as a whole we're in agreement that their work is still very much appreciated by and large. They oil the cogs and keep the whole thing running as smoothly as they can. They do this because it's their job and because it's what they like to do, or perhaps for some other reason that is their own. I don't know and it's not that important, really, so much as it's important that they do their jobs and do them well.

But this response, this idea that we can't criticize one aspect without criticizing all aspects? This idea that "It's not as bad as it was or it could be, so clearly anything you say is null and void!" or "They dislike the way things are run! That means they dislike us!" is just painful and unhealthy, and it's leading to all this pain and hatred and horrible discontent on both sides.

It's selfish to want to trust the system? It's selfish to see something going badly and trying to fix it? Trying to make things better by whatever suggestion we may give? Yes I wholeheartedly acknowledge that perhaps some things said were less than constructive, but in that same vein, after a point this degenerated into attacks on character and hurt feelings on all sides and that isn't something I can stand for.

Not from the players. Not from the GMs. Not from anyone.

You're entitled to respect. You're not entitled to trust.
You're entitled to have your work for this server, anyone's work be it GM or player or even some outsider inspiring a story or working on the core... You're entitled to have that work appreciated and I assure you it is. This does not mean your good works make you above criticism. This "How dare you say this! X did Y for the server so you can't criticize Z!"


How is that fair to the players? How is it fair that every time the players bring an issue, it goes so far until both sides are angry and hurt and then (at least from my perspective) none of us think to change things?

This doesn't need to be a massive overhaul. This doesn't even need to involve the rules at this point. If this thread shows anything, it shows that there is in fact a massive rift between the GMs and the players. This extends to all the staff, or at least most of it (with some overflow on both sides, perhaps) and even ex-GMs.

Look back through the thread. By and large the sides are painted clearly even from the start. Did any of us reconsider our opinions in this? Did anyone convince anyone of anything aside from making it seem we hate and detest one another over a disagreement? Or did we all revert to "No I'm right and here's why." mode?

Something has to change, whether or not it's disciplinary or personal is irrelevant. People are getting hurt and we should all be rethinking our actions here. We shouldn't be taking criticism or discontent as an attack on our character and we shouldn't assume the worst of each other instantly, but that doesn't mean we should be obligated to assume the best either. Neither is fair to both parties. Both are just as easily abused.

Players and GMs need to stop this rift from widening or in four years we'll all be saying "Man, remember how bad it was in '13?" and the cycle will start over. I don't want that and I want to believe the rest of you don't want that either.

Sorry. That wasn't really short at all.

Edit: Please don't assume I'm saying only the "GM side" is at fault here. Both parties are. All parties, really.
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.
Spoiler:
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So, I meant to be done with this thread. It seems I have one more post to make.

Quote:Sometimes I feel like the arguments GM's have in public look fabricated. Realize how I said "looked" fabricated and not "are". That's the difference, ya'll. Sometimes I think all of you guys who are inciting drama get together on Skype and say "how can we lock this thread, yo, lets make this a big deal and like, shut SourPuddle out so we can all wallow in our own filth hahahaha" and like grunts and GM's work as teams, perfectly melding their responses to be passive aggressive and undyingly mean and kind of illogical and misunderstanding all to cause a web of entropic disorder, so that this thread thereby becomes viable for "lockdown" and suddenly I'm out of business!

The notion of this bothers me. As someone who has taken this thread very seriously and has been highly affected by what has been going on during it, I'm honestly offended that this was even suggested.


Quote:(by the way, I don't really think you guys do that, haha).

Then there was no reason to include it.

With that, I'm out.
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(03-23-2013, 05:32 PM)Rigley Wrote: The notion of this bothers me. As someone who has taken this thread very seriously and has been highly affected by what has been going on during it, I'm honestly offended that this was even suggested.

You know, it bothers me too; that's why I brought it out to light and was down to earth with you guys. I'm not going to pretend that didn't come to mind, this isn't even the first time I felt that on CotH. If you haven't noticed, I'm pretty serious about all this too; I'm the one who started it, to some extent. I've spent a few hours just clarifying concerns and putting in stories about my personal experience. If you're offended that this was suggested, then OK man, that's fine with me. I don't want you to be, but I'm not you, so I can't really change that.

I'm not going to say sorry, but I will say that I respect what you're saying and I'll take it into consideration next time I try to lighten up the atmosphere.
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Woo there fella's. These posts seem to be getting worse and worse with the sides. Ya'll are right. Ya'll are wrong. But it seems both sides are stuck in their ways. Remember the whole High Fantasy versus Low Fantasy? Damn, that stuff was crazy. "It's high fantasy because of x" versus "It's low fantasy because of y." You know what I saw there? Both sides were right. It's like saying you should add the milk before the flour in a cake or the flour before the milk. As it turns out, you alternate with them. Milk, then flour, then milk and so on, or even vis versa. No one is wrong here, yet no one is right.

What you need is a middle ground. Find that one solid piece of land in the center of this rift and work off it instead of trying to defend yourselves. Let yourselves be wrong, yet at the same time know that part of what you say is right. Separate, your both wrong, together, your both right.

To quote the Beatles,



We're all different, but we all have something in common. Roleplay, don't throw that away.
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I was going to post something here, but then I noticed that there was a hundred new posts so I rewrote it, and then I tried rewriting it all out in Newspeak to fit with the theme of the day, but then it was bad so I deleted it all.

Spoiler:
. . . The gist of it was a clarification of what I thought about this 'rift' between us. It's definitely there, yeah. If a GM wants to keep a player at arms' length and treat them like an accident waiting to happen, I guess they can. And if a player wants to look at the GMs like the Inner Party, they can, too.

The post was mainly going to be a declaration of my belief that the rift between the players and the GMs is only as wide as people want it to be.

There's been the odd occasion where I've felt like a lonely sentinel perched upon a tall mountain, staring down at the players. There are frequent moments when I feel like that one awkward kid in a secluded corner at a loud and busy party, trying to comprehend what's happening through my unnecessarily thick spectacles. But there are times -- the majority of the time, I can say with confidence -- where a lot of you folks feel like brothers and sisters to me. I'm sure a lot of you on both sides of the divide can relate similar experiences.

So, I think most of this distance -- most of that rift -- is simply what you choose to make up in your head at a given time.

The 'rift' can easily be bridged with mutual patience and understanding. That's what we all owe each other as human beings, first and foremost -- 'respect' or 'trust' comes later. That was the gist of what I was going to say, at least.

Thank you.

I feel like such a hippie now.
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Here, putting in spoilers will probably help solve the problem Nikodemos was talking about. Even if I'm just. . .hiding the issues! hawhawhaw


Caravan
Spoiler:
(03-23-2013, 05:28 PM)Caravan Wrote: Players can have a say if they write clear, well-organized proposals, but not demands.

100% behind you, homey.

(03-23-2013, 05:28 PM)Caravan Wrote: Preferably in some place like the Private Discussion forum, only because it keeps the conversation specific to the proposal at hand rather than off-shooting (as this thread has) to unrelated things.

Yes and yes, but I think if there's a problem with that it's that such a thing involves one player with the staff. Players should be able to collaborate and fine tune those ideas with eachother, too. But we should definitely take more advantage of the Private Discussion forum. I think, even, if a GM finds an issue that a player is clearly interested in then they should PM the player to make the post themselves. Dunno, just shooting ideas.

(03-23-2013, 05:28 PM)Caravan Wrote: Can this be done in public? Sure, but as it goes with most public dialogues, people will tack on their own ideas that may completely detract from the original post and make the original post get lost. Or, if you do not want it to be discussed with the GMs, players are always, always welcome to contact Kretol or Grakor directly.

I mean, people might detract from the original post. Even if all our 'on-topic discussion' experiments in the past have failed (and I'm pretty sure they all haven't) doesn't mean that it isn't possible. That's sort of what I'm talking about; how CAN we make it possible? Well, if communication is the issue, lets find a solution.

(03-23-2013, 05:28 PM)Caravan Wrote: So far, I've rarely, if ever, seen something like this.

Well, it wont be perfect (although you didn't say that, I just wanted to say it myself because someone mentioned "utopia" before). We'll find some way to screw it up, but that's OK. We just need to keep trying, reiterating until we get it right. We know what DOESN'T work, right? . . .Lets use that to our advantage.

KageAcuma
Spoiler:
(03-23-2013, 05:56 PM)KageAcuma Wrote: Woo there fella's. These posts seem to be getting worse and worse with the sides. Ya'll are right. Ya'll are wrong. But it seems both sides are stuck in their ways. Remember the whole High Fantasy versus Low Fantasy? Damn, that stuff was crazy. "It's high fantasy because of x" versus "It's low fantasy because of y." You know what I saw there? Both sides were right. It's like saying you should add the milk before the flour in a cake or the flour before the milk. As it turns out, you alternate with them. Milk, then flour, then milk and so on, or even vis versa. No one is wrong here, yet no one is right.

Hell yeah, hallelujah.


(03-23-2013, 05:56 PM)KageAcuma Wrote: What you need is a middle ground. Find that one solid piece of land in the center of this rift and work off it instead of trying to defend yourselves. Let yourselves be wrong, yet at the same time know that part of what you say is right. Separate, your both wrong, together, your both right.

Totally agree dude, you got it.

(03-23-2013, 05:56 PM)KageAcuma Wrote: We're all different, but we all have something in common. Roleplay, don't throw that away.

Go ahead and throw that in a notepad, save it; we might need it again, man.

Sol
Spoiler:
(03-23-2013, 06:04 PM)Sol Wrote: I was going to post something here, but then I noticed that there was a hundred new posts so I rewrote it, and then I tried rewriting it all out in Newspeak to fit with the theme of the day, but then it was bad so I deleted it all.

Dude, you speak for like, all of us haha!

(03-23-2013, 06:04 PM)Sol Wrote: . . . The gist of it was a clarification of what I thought about this 'rift' between us. It's definitely there, yeah. If a GM wants to keep a player at arms' length and treat them like an accident waiting to happen, I guess they can. And if a player wants to look at the GMs like the Inner Party, they can, too.

The post was mainly going to be a declaration of my belief that the rift between the players and the GMs is only as wide as people want it to be.

Yeah man, you got it.

(03-23-2013, 06:04 PM)Sol Wrote: There's been the odd occasion where I've felt like a lonely sentinel perched upon a tall mountain, staring down at the players. There are frequent moments when I feel like that one awkward kid in a secluded corner at a loud and busy party, trying to comprehend what's happening through my unnecessarily thick spectacles. But there are times -- the majority of the time, I can say with confidence -- where a lot of you folks feel like brothers and sisters to me. I'm sure a lot of you on both sides of the divide can relate similar experiences.


Me too, bro. And I'm not just saying 'bro' in replacement of urban ebonic shibboleth for 'friend', yo. I think we can all learn from this and relate, man.

I mean, I know I'm just agreeing with you, but legit man. . .I already assumed that this was how it was. Like, I thought we were all on the same page, right there. Seeing that we're not, we need this, man. Thanks.

EDIT: Added Sol
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Also... To divert entirely from the drama in this thread...

Regarding ban notifications. As people have already chimed on a lot, people do get notified of their ban-able behaviour. Usually repeatedly, seeing as a large chunk of the GM team is extremely hesitant to take the step from suspension to perma-ban. When a ban is finally issued, however, it's most often (I know it's been forgotten a few times) accompanied by a ban email notification. Basically just an email that details that you've been banned from the server, listing a reason why.

Usually this reason includes rules broken by numbers, but sometimes it includes a more detailed account on what exactly caused the hammer to fall.

If we can pull anything from this thread, I'd say it'd be:
  • Make sure the GM-talks happen much more obviously with the offenders (and reporters), especially prior to permanent bans unless it's a severe offense and no mistakes can possibly be made.
  • Perhaps make a habit of being more detailed in the final ban-email so there's no mistake there, either. (I'mma squeeze my own suggestion in like a pro. Yep.)
  • Encourage people to ask about the bans in private mediums (PMs, Private Discussion).

I disagree with making anything about the bans public knowledge. Perhaps offer some more insight in the Account Management ban-list, at best. But, to protect the integrity of those involved, banned player or no, the details of the offenses need to be kept between the parties involved. It's just like a private drama elsewhere. Not everyone are entitled to know what went on between two individuals just because they happen to be friends with one of them. Whether they tell you or not is their choice, and if you're curious you can just come up and ask someone in private. Broadcasting any of this publicly is just asking for trouble on so many levels, and I don't see why this is necessary or will ever be if you can inquire the admins directly.

Mistakes have been made many times by the GM team in the past. They're all human, as has been said many times already in this thread. People make mistakes. But they also learn from them and move on. Chances are, the next time a similar situation shows up, they won't make the same mistake again.

Holding the current GM team to the same standards as the old ones is a bit counter-productive, however. If you already have a set framework, it really doesn't matter much what they do or say since you already have your filters and expectations up. If you've been around for a long time and have seen what the old GM teams have accomplished, the mistakes they made, it would be beneficial for everyone to take a step back and take another look at the current GM team. Give them a fair chance, at least, and pass judgement later.

Until then, keeping things civil's certainly a good start. No one's entitled to trust, faith or anything. Though, the least we can do to eachother is to be civil and adhere to mutual respect where things aren't rubbed in eachothers' faces, and give everyone the fair chance they deserve.

*deep breath*
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The only thing I know I could ask for would be more clarity when dealing with these potential bans. Hopefully it'll lead to less confusion and (maybe in some cases) reform in the player.

I really don't know what's going on back a few pages since my last post (and sudden self awareness), but I'm not gonna dabble in arguments and drama.

[Image: 24576822.jpg]

I took a risk on my own part approaching @Rigley off the forums, and I gotta say it was different from what I was expecting. In a good way. A very good way. Some point in time I did forget how I could approach GMs easily, really.

Just remember, rationality and whatnot. 'Tis the Internet. We're here for fun. And other things.... Er... Mostly fun. No need to be getting worked up.
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[4:16:27 PM] Cristovao di Silvio ( @CappnRob): theres the bar. then theres the bottom of the barrel, then theres you sachi
Just one more thing.

Flammos Wrote: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.

I just need to say something about this.

As someone who was on the receiving end of stalking, emotional blackmail & manipulation and harassment, I wholeheartedly disagree. One could argue that everything that happens off the server is supposed to be a safe sanctuary, but when it affects the members of the server negatively so to the point that simply logging on the server becomes a great discomfort, something needs to be done. Because these kinds of behaviours don't stop just because you block them from your Skype, MSN, or whichever IM service you use.

These people that are doing these deplorable things to fellow members can still access the same playground as you. A bully at home won't stop being a bully because they leave the house and join the other kids in the schoolyard. They'll still be a bully and cause their victims severe emotional anguish. Those kinds of situations need to be dealt with for what they are, since they are making people suffer unfairly. And to say that these events can't be reprimanded because they didn't happen in the forums or on the WoW-server will enable that suffering to continue and drive the victims away eventually.

Just like with regular Real Life bullying.
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So.


When did this thread decide to turn into a debate thread? :|
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Alright. So, I'm going to close this thread.

Honestly, I didn't intend for this to be a debate thread, and it's diverted into a completely different direction than I wanted it to. What everyone has said has been noted, we'll work with the feedback that we have and do what we feel is necessary.

As always, you're still able to contact me regarding anything disciplinary, and I'll answer as best I can.
Have you hugged an orc today?
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