Author Topic: Forum Charter for discussion - Draft....  (Read 2401 times)

colinjones

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Forum Charter for discussion - Draft....
« on: March 27, 2009, 01:11:14 am »
Hi all - I have started to draft a charter for the forum, that the moderators (myself, Bulek and dlewis) can use to apply consistent, agreed standards of behaviour. Most importantly, we need to gain majority support from forum members for this charter for it to have any legitimacy!

As I say, this is only a draft. I have jotted down some fairly basic points that I feel will help make the forum a more reasonable and reasoned place to live in. They are off-the-top-of-my-head, so there are bound to be gaps, inconsistencies, and problems. Before we finalise this charter and publish it as a sticky topic, I need to get as much feedback from everyone as possible. Particularly so of the long time members. I will try to get a consensus, or at least majority, position, then republish a v2 we can have a vote on.

Here is the draft. The forum is Topic - Description - Action (if any)

Ethical:

Light Touch - when in doubt, moderators will take no action. They are here to protect the tone and facility of the forums, not censor it. All attempts will be made to avoid applying personal, subjective standards.

Swearing - Swear words are acceptable, this is part of normal everyday discourse. There is no need to get upset over such behaviour. Swearing used to increase the impact of an abusive attack is not acceptable. It is the abuse that is being actioned - See Unnecessarily Abusive Posts.

Free Speech - The forum is not an extension of any putative right to free speech. Cordial behaviour is expected and the charter should be respected. Abuses will be actioned when appropriate.

Discrimination/"isms" - Using the forum to communicate negative stereotypes and concepts relating to race, sex, sexuality, ethnicity, national origin, religion, or other group-identification is not acceptable. - Comments need to be assessed in context, but if found to be inappropriate, will be removed.

General Activities:

Spiralling Forum Thread - Continual posts and reposts, not related to the original subject or any related subjects, without any new posts on the original or related subjects, that are of an adversarial/argumentative/negative nature - Lock the thread.

Unnecessarily Abusive Posts - Repeated, personal, abusive posts that add no information to the original subject or related subjects - Remove the posts, if it continues, lock the thread.

Argumentative Thread - Repeated disagreement, no attempt to find common ground, thus no assistance to other forum members, setting the wrong tone. Should be taken offline - Temporarily lock thread for cool-down.

Trolls - Repeated posts across many threads over a period of time, where the nature of the comments appear to be to be willfully contradictary and contrary irrespective of subject - Warning via PM, if continues, lock the account.

Other:

Blatant, unrelated commercial posts - Posts/threads that seek to advertise or raise sales for product or service completely unrelated to LMCE. This includes hardware that is not known or suspected of being compatible with the system, particularly from unknown/untrusted posters - Delete thread

Spam - UCE, UBE - delete, lock account.

totallymaxed

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Re: Forum Charter for discussion - Draft....
« Reply #1 on: March 27, 2009, 01:27:45 am »
Hi all - I have started to draft a charter for the forum, that the moderators (myself, Bulek and dlewis) can use to apply consistent, agreed standards of behaviour. Most importantly, we need to gain majority support from forum members for this charter for it to have any legitimacy!

As I say, this is only a draft. I have jotted down some fairly basic points that I feel will help make the forum a more reasonable and reasoned place to live in. They are off-the-top-of-my-head, so there are bound to be gaps, inconsistencies, and problems. Before we finalise this charter and publish it as a sticky topic, I need to get as much feedback from everyone as possible. Particularly so of the long time members. I will try to get a consensus, or at least majority, position, then republish a v2 we can have a vote on.

Here is the draft. The forum is Topic - Description - Action (if any)

Ethical:

Light Touch - when in doubt, moderators will take no action. They are here to protect the tone and facility of the forums, not censor it. All attempts will be made to avoid applying personal, subjective standards.

Swearing - Swear words are acceptable, this is part of normal everyday discourse. There is no need to get upset over such behaviour. Swearing used to increase the impact of an abusive attack is not acceptable. It is the abuse that is being actioned - See Unnecessarily Abusive Posts.

Free Speech - The forum is not an extension of any putative right to free speech. Cordial behaviour is expected and the charter should be respected. Abuses will be actioned when appropriate.

Discrimination/"isms" - Using the forum to communicate negative stereotypes and concepts relating to race, sex, sexuality, ethnicity, national origin, religion, or other group-identification is not acceptable. - Comments need to be assessed in context, but if found to be inappropriate, will be removed.

General Activities:

Spiralling Forum Thread - Continual posts and reposts, not related to the original subject or any related subjects, without any new posts on the original or related subjects, that are of an adversarial/argumentative/negative nature - Lock the thread.

Unnecessarily Abusive Posts - Repeated, personal, abusive posts that add no information to the original subject or related subjects - Remove the posts, if it continues, lock the thread.

Argumentative Thread - Repeated disagreement, no attempt to find common ground, thus no assistance to other forum members, setting the wrong tone. Should be taken offline - Temporarily lock thread for cool-down.

Trolls - Repeated posts across many threads over a period of time, where the nature of the comments appear to be to be willfully contradictary and contrary irrespective of subject - Warning via PM, if continues, lock the account.

Other:

Blatant, unrelated commercial posts - Posts/threads that seek to advertise or raise sales for product or service completely unrelated to LMCE. This includes hardware that is not known or suspected of being compatible with the system, particularly from unknown/untrusted posters - Delete thread

Spam - UCE, UBE - delete, lock account.

They look fine to me... we could argue for this or that to be specifically mentioned/included... but in my opinion the most important part of this is the the three of you act with 'one voice' and do so in consistent and above all 'reasonable' manner. Hopefully the result will be a more accepting and welcoming 'ambience' here and that this will act as a catalyst for many more people from all sides of life to get involved with LinuxMCE... I am confident that this will indeed happen :-)

Best wishes to the three of you.

Andrew
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hari

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Re: Forum Charter for discussion - Draft....
« Reply #2 on: March 27, 2009, 01:50:21 am »
looks good for me..
rock your home - http://www.agocontrol.com home automation

Zaerc

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Re: Forum Charter for discussion - Draft....
« Reply #3 on: March 27, 2009, 01:52:40 am »
Free Speech - The forum is not an extension of any putative right to free speech. Cordial behaviour is expected and the charter should be respected. Abuses will be actioned when appropriate.

LOL first start censoring, then make a rule about it... you guys are a joke!
"Change is inevitable. Progress is optional."
-- Anonymous


colinjones

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Re: Forum Charter for discussion - Draft....
« Reply #4 on: March 27, 2009, 02:07:07 am »
Free Speech - The forum is not an extension of any putative right to free speech. Cordial behaviour is expected and the charter should be respected. Abuses will be actioned when appropriate.

LOL first start censoring, then make a rule about it... you guys are a joke!

If you have better wording, post or send it to me. As I said, this is just a draft.

Let me explain my reasoning for that line: some people get very defensive of a right to free speech. Whilst I fully support that in public, every day life, I was trying to establish some rule that would mean that someone can't just flout all the other rules and claim they can do so because of some constitutional/legislative right to free speech they may have. After all, the very same argument can be used to defend spam for penis enlargements and other irrelevant products, and to attack the requirement to register before posting.

If you think it should be taken out, post here. I'm hoping lots of people post their thoughts so I can get some kind of feel for the general consensus...

Ray_N

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Re: Forum Charter for discussion - Draft....
« Reply #5 on: March 27, 2009, 03:50:54 am »
Thumbs up!  Being a first draft, it actually looks very good. Simple and to the point.
Nothing critical, but you may also want to put in something about you guys reserving the right to move threads among boards if the posting is more appropriate for a different board. Something like:

Appropriate Forum Board - Administrators reserve the right to move entire threads to more appropriate boards, if the subject so deserves it.

R

lmce3000

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Re: Forum Charter for discussion - Draft....
« Reply #6 on: March 27, 2009, 04:00:45 am »
Really guys, shutdown a thread just because you think it hasn't been useful?
Are we curing cancer here?

You guys just proved my point, "Tough Love In This Forum"

John.
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*Teach a man how to fish, you feed him for a lifetime.

dlewis

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Re: Forum Charter for discussion - Draft....
« Reply #7 on: March 27, 2009, 04:06:13 am »
Really guys, shutdown a thread just because you think it hasn't been useful?
Are we curing cancer here?

You guys just proved my point, "Tough Love In This Forum"

John.

I don't think that's what it means. There is a difference between useful and running on (beyond the original point).

I think this is needed in order to stop threads from going on-and-on-and-on. If you would like, we could possibly make this a rule (subject to vote):

If the issue has been resolved, then the thread should be closed. I would also state that the person who asked the question should create a wiki page in order to prevent subsequent threads on the same topic, and the wiki link should be the last post in the thread (if the thread is locked, then a moderator should post the link to the thread).
« Last Edit: March 27, 2009, 04:10:18 am by dlewis »

lmce3000

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Re: Forum Charter for discussion - Draft....
« Reply #8 on: March 27, 2009, 04:11:51 am »
dlewis,

That definitely make more sense. However in this thread, there wasn't any particular issue to be resolved
it was meant to foster an open dialogue about how people approach this forum or any other forum for that matter.
All participants, moderators and all. Do your homework and be patient with the less advanced users.

John.
* Give a man a fish, you feed him for a day
*Teach a man how to fish, you feed him for a lifetime.

lmce3000

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Re: Forum Charter for discussion - Draft....
« Reply #9 on: March 27, 2009, 04:14:28 am »
With that said, I'll leave it alone. It's your forum.

John.
* Give a man a fish, you feed him for a day
*Teach a man how to fish, you feed him for a lifetime.

dlewis

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Re: Forum Charter for discussion - Draft....
« Reply #10 on: March 27, 2009, 04:16:20 am »
dlewis,

That definitely make more sense. However in this thread, there wasn't any particular issue to be resolved
it was meant to foster an open dialogue about how people approach this forum or any other forum for that matter.
All participants, moderators and all. Do your homework and be patient with the less advanced users.

John.

There was an issue... The lack of moderating this forum. We solved that by now having moderators. Therefore, we closed the thread (please see my prospective rule above). :)

dlewis

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Re: Forum Charter for discussion - Draft....
« Reply #11 on: March 27, 2009, 04:20:44 am »
With that said, I'll leave it alone. It's your forum.

John.

It's our forum... We only police it... You have as much right to this as we do.

colinjones

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Re: Forum Charter for discussion - Draft....
« Reply #12 on: March 27, 2009, 04:29:51 am »
Guys - you are talking about an issue that isn't there. The wording is:

"Spiralling Forum Thread - Continual posts and reposts, not related to the original subject or any related subjects, without any new posts on the original or related subjects, that are of an adversarial/argumentative/negative nature - Lock the thread."

NOTE: the key criteria are that there are continual posts/reposts; these posts/reposts are not about the original subject or related subjects (ie off-topic); and they are adversarial, argumentative or negative in nature.

There is no suggestion in the draft that threads that are simply "solved" or "resolved" should be closed. This is about threads going off on abusive tangents, only. I certainly would not support closing of threads because they are concluded. That is over-regulating (light touch remember) - many threads are perfectly fine to go on indefinitely, witness the threads on javamo and zwave driver. And many of the sticky threads. Often times this is a useful, centralised history of a point that continues to develop indefinitely. Other times (and this is the one I am most concerned about) a thread should be available to revive at any point, months or even years later, because someone wants to ask a related question or bring up another point... what is the point of us continually telling new users to search the forums, if when they come across a relevant thread, they can't post into it and have to start a new thread, back referencing the old??

This moderating function cannot be officious or bureaucratic. If there is no driving reason to take action, then no action should be taken. I see no reason for closing threads just because they are concluded.

Ray_N

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Re: Forum Charter for discussion - Draft....
« Reply #13 on: March 27, 2009, 05:38:16 am »
While I agree with locking "Spiralling Forum Threads", I am noticing conflicting "requirements" on this. I'll explain, just so you are aware that you may be creating extra work for yourselves in the future. The conflicting requirements are:
1) Locking spiraling threads
2) A thread should be available to revive at any point.

So if a thread is locked because it became spiraling, and then, a month later some new user wants to post on it. How would they go about doing it? Two options, both of which, as I see it, unfortunately create extra work for you Admins.
1) User sends a message to admins to please unlock the thread.
2) Admins set themselves a reminder to unlock the thread a a predetermined date.

Therefore, the locking of spiraling threads may eventually (once Admins get tired of re-enabling threads) turn out to be a "locked forever" type of thing, therefore overruling "requirement" or "preference" #2.

Not taking a stance for or against it...just explaining some possible scenarios in case you may not have thought of this.

R

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Re: Forum Charter for discussion - Draft....
« Reply #14 on: March 27, 2009, 05:47:01 am »
I fully agree with Colin.  Someone might step into the forum months or years later with the same issue that was discussed and the "resolution" that was mentioned on the forum no longer works.  That new user should be able to post a "I've tried all of the above stuff and I still get $ERROR_MSG".  Also, we might have a regression when people move to 0810 and some new library version (or some other non-pluto package) creates an error that seems similar to something that has been discussed in the forum. 

The question I have is this:  What is the advantage of closing a thread?  To stop a thread from "going on and on".  Well, if someone is still posting on the thread, at least they feel that there is something worth to contribute.