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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Sun Aug 03, 2008 9:35 am 
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Recently I watched this video and while it is primarily presented for communities in open source software development, it applies to other communities as well. Several aspects/examples they cover remind me of stuff I've seen here, though I'm not trying to make a certain point or argue either way by posting this. Watch and think at your own risk.

How Open Source Projects Survive Poisonous People
http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid ... 1522818645

Oh and if you do watch it, I recommend watching the whole video (at least the first 45 minutes, the rest is Q&A), because it somewhat presents several perspectives and you'd miss the balance if you only watched a part.


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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Sun Aug 03, 2008 11:31 am 
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flambore-- the thing is- i don't care what you say. no wonder u support sausage you think your voice is the end of arguments, and that i somehow care about your singular opinion more than the many people that have said they support me (many more than the people than say they think i'm wrong). you've made no valid points or facts backing up your opinion you just keep ranting on about how sausage is high and mighty. if you'd like to pull your tongue out of his butt and make a valid point feel free, but most of your posts are propaganda bs. this site has outgrown 1 man running everything, no one can deny it. fairness is stil a possibility and don't worry i will leave once i think everything has been said that is needed. grow a spine, nancy.

its quite evident by sauasages lack of response that he knows he's been caught being oppresive. he won't answer any of my very valid points, he just is using a bunch of users as a shield throwing up 'sausage can do what he wants' tags. the signatures didn't hurt anything but sausages pride, and as an admin he should be able to tell the difference between rule-breaking and personal dislike. it didn't 'undermind' him, because no one could actually change it, they were just exercising a little socio-commentary. all this points to the facts we need a panel of admins, instead of one person running this place with biased oppression.

maybe another project in civil unrest would help, maybe all those that support any of the unfairly banned and the effort to have a more balanced panel of admins should work out a day or even a whole week or so when no one will login. this will evidence the fact that's its not sausage that makes this site, its the users; admins are easily replaceable, hundreds of users are not.

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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Sun Aug 03, 2008 1:20 pm 
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LOL. I guess if I didn't have a life, you would have offended me but dude- I would recommend you take the personal insults out of your messages. It distracts from your credibility when you take pot-shots at random people who oppose your opinions. There was no need for that, but whatever. I don't even know Sausage, so it makes little difference who I am backing personally. I gave you the facts, coming from one who runs a site myself. This site is owned by one person. It's run by another one person. It's not a democracy. But you keep bantering on about how you're being oppressed, blah blah blah. Whatever. I've wasted way too much time and effort on something that really doesn't even concern me, so consider this my last response to this thread. Go ahead an flame away.


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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Sun Aug 03, 2008 1:21 pm 
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Personally, I'm entirely in favor of people being banned merely for the crime of being an annoying twit. In fact I wish banning for annoying twittery were a common activity around here.


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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Sun Aug 03, 2008 2:02 pm 
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wow, I've been gone for 4 weeks and alot has happened

I still don't know what to think of this, but i do have one question

Was the initial person who was banned, banned because of one final incident or just looking back at the problems he has caused?

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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Sun Aug 03, 2008 2:08 pm 
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Bram wrote:
Personally, I'm entirely in favor of people being banned merely for the crime of being an annoying twit. In fact I wish banning for annoying twittery were a common activity around here.


I couldn't have put it better if I tried!

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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Sun Aug 03, 2008 2:35 pm 
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In my life I have noticed a trend, people tend to undermine themselves without help from opponents. One of my senators is running for reelection, nothing her opponent has said makes me think that she shouldn't be reelected, things she's said have. In high school I watched a mock trial where one side tore themselves apart and then won because the opposing side did tore themselves apart even more thoroughly.

I see this happening here as well. Nothing sausage has said makes me think he is not an evil dictator of this forum, but rxdeath is starting to convince me.

We have ten rules here, they are labeled one through ten. Rxdeath, you are not only violating rule five repeatedly, you're doing it in the form of direct attacks on sausage. What does it say when you can compare our only active admin to Hitler and not be banned? It doesn't say that he is oppressive. If I were an admin, and I saw you pulling out comparisons to goose steppers you'd be gone. That would be a line I would not let you cross. You have convinced me that sausage is less oppressive than I would be. Perhaps that speaks poorly of me, but it does not speak poorly of sausage.

Do you really want to convince me that sausage is a lenient admin? Is that the purpose you are working towards? I don't think it is, but it is certainly what you are doing.

Ethan, every time you post through someone else's account you are demonstrating that you are actively trying to undermine sausages authority as admin. That is the very thing he accused you of. How does proving you are now guilty help your case?

Wouldn't it be better to say, "I was innocent and I still am," than to demonstrate that regardless of whether or not you were guilty you certainly are now?

-

I have said before that I make no claim of knowing what happened, but what is happening now is plain for all to see and you two are making a better case against yourselves than sausage ever could. rxdeath, the only one who can show that sausage is oppressive is sausage, not you. He isn't doing that now, giving him reason to ban you isn't going to help.

Ethan, if you want to convince the forum that you didn't deserve to be banned the best way to do that is to act like someone who doesn't deserve to be banned. Stop undermining sausage's authority, then when he says that you are banned to prevent you from undermining his athority it will hold no weight.

--

[Added:]
TheCube wrote:
wow, I've been gone for 4 weeks and alot has happened

I still don't know what to think of this, but i do have one question

Was the initial person who was banned, banned because of one final incident or just looking back at the problems he has caused?

I'm about to paraphrase both sides. It is entirely possible that neither will find what I say sufficent. You have been warned.

According to sausage the initial person banned was banned after extended consideration, and thus his activity at the time of his banning was not the reason for him being banned.

According to the other side he was banned for no reason other than sausage not liking him, with the implication that the person's use of the word, "hell," may have been used as a false pretense.


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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Sun Aug 03, 2008 5:37 pm 
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Despite all that's gone on, rxdeath hasn't violated any rules, until now.

Just to clear up a couple of points, the original user was finally removed because a straw finally broke the camel's back, not by going back over old posts.

And I did like the original user. He and I shared a few common interests.

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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Sun Aug 03, 2008 11:03 pm 
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GSonic7 wrote:
I find it funny that the people who are posting in support of sausage are the ones who seem to know the least about what happened.
Interesting observation.
GSonic7 wrote:
Guys, I've seen the email conversation between sausage and Thom. Thom was banned because sausage doesn't like him. That really is it. If that isn't true, then flambore should be banned, because like thom, Flambore opposed somebody else's view in a not so positive tone, which was the reason given for Thom's ban.
I don't really see the point here. I am in favor of rxdeath's point of view, but this isn't very helpful because I believe that an admin's right to ban people on his/her forum is similar to the right (at least in the US) for a restaurant to arbitrarily refuse service to anybody they want. That is not the crux of the issue anyways.
rxdeath wrote:
its quite evident by sauasages lack of response that he knows he's been caught being oppresive. he won't answer any of my very valid points, he just is using a bunch of users as a shield throwing up 'sausage can do what he wants' tags.
Such tags are valid I think (for the reasons I put above), however they don't address the real issue here.
rxdeath wrote:
all this points to the facts we need a panel of admins, instead of one person running this place with biased oppression.

maybe another project in civil unrest would help, maybe all those that support any of the unfairly banned and the effort to have a more balanced panel of admins should work out a day or even a whole week or so when no one will login. this will evidence the fact that's its not sausage that makes this site, its the users; admins are easily replaceable, hundreds of users are not.
I mostly agree, except the wording. Replace "panel of admins" to "panel of moderators" or preferably a "hierarchy of moderators" because there is a big difference there. It's the difference between UNREASONABLLY asking them to *share ownership*, versus asking them to *delegate authority*.
flambore wrote:
I gave you the facts, coming from one who runs a site myself. This site is owned by one person. It's run by another one person. It's not a democracy.
This is the usual argument, and although completely correct, simply becasue you are stating plain, obvious facts, but it's an insufficent argument... for anything really. There is a big difference between a regular website which houses only the owner's material, and a FORUM that is a collection of user contributions. And such contributions where surely made *in good faith* that requests such as mine/rxdeaths would be handled if/when they arise. When much of the user-base is demanding change, then the issues must be addressed to be fair to the members. And I'm assuming we all want to be fair to each other, right? But if not then it IS kinda of 'opressive' (in a way) as rxdeath said.
Bram wrote:
Personally, I'm entirely in favor of people being banned merely for the crime of being an annoying twit. In fact I wish banning for annoying twittery were a common activity around here.
Me too perhaps. And I don't disagree with an admin's right to do that. But it would have been nice if such a thing happened under a 'panel of moderators' and the admins wouldn't have to do it themselves. Moreover, the fact that this 'situation' happened at all, proves my point: that we *need* a panel of moderators. Sure it is "not a democracy" as ppl keep saying, but in most (or any successful) dictatorship, the dictators would want to keep the people 'happy' ...to some reasonable degree. I believe it is plenty reasonable what I ask.

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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Mon Aug 04, 2008 1:46 am 
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This post is primarily for sausage's attention.

I cannot possibly give an evaluation or post my comments unless I know all the facts. As of now I don't feel like I understand enough about the situation.

I'm glad Sausage made this topic because he is addressing the situation to us members when he could have easily just not mentioned it at all. However, upon viewing the arguments presented by the banned users in the YouTube video posted on the first page, what of what they claim is truth?

All I ask, sausage, is clarification on the situation so that I and presumably everyone else can better judge the situation. After being banned over an incident it's likely that users would post outlandish statements. This may or may not be the case but until I know for sure, it's not right to judge the situation.

In order to make the forum a better place, we must come to terms with past incidences and learn from them. And part of that process is making sure we understand what happened.

If you could clarify the validity in the comments made by the banned users I would appreciate it. Thank you!

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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Mon Aug 04, 2008 2:20 am 
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sn7221, sausage has commented before that he agrees with the timeline of events although not with the opinions.

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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Mon Aug 04, 2008 3:05 am 
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this matter troubles me greatly because i respected some of these members and looked up to them. Howver, you all seem to be forgetting there wouldnt probably be TP without sausage. Even though i may not agree with him i respect his decition. I really dont think it is worth backing up a member (defying the moderator) and geting banned. there will be more people like them in the future and hopefully they dont make the same mistakes these people did.

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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Mon Aug 04, 2008 6:16 am 
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Delta wrote:
Howver, you all seem to be forgetting there wouldnt probably be TP without sausage.


Correct, but TP wouldn't be what it is without the users. Otherwise, it's no different from any other puzzle forum. The analogies of "It's sausage's house" don't really work that well, because he's been inviting people to come in freely for many years and improve the value of the house. Yes, it's legal for him to ban people, but not really ethical.

To the people that state Ethan should really show he's not like sausage made him out to be, how is he suppose to do that when he's banned?

And as for sausage being the only moderator and that it's a tough job, well, it was brought upon himself. He could have had more moderators from the beginning. Many people here have volunteered to help. There used to be a time when I volunteered some money because this was such a great forum. If he had been actively moderating and handled other situations, then I would've been fine with this action, but since this really seems like the first act of moderating he's done in a long time (or at least I've seen several posts that could've used moderation), it's frustrating.

Sausage, if thom also agreed, would you agree to a transcript of the e-mails between the two of you to be posted? Then we can see for ourselves the manner you and thom acted in and make our own decisions. I think people are still wondering about the "You come to me showing no humility" comment. Are there more things like that?

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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Mon Aug 04, 2008 9:19 am 
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Just wanted to chime in with a suggestion here that I'm sure has been mentioned before but since (with the exception of the one "Beginner thread" that's been created very recently) it's apparently never come to fruition I'll run the risk of redundancy. I don't come to this site very often and to be honest it's because of all the forums I'm on (and there are many), this is the most flame-happy of them all. There's lots of talk about "search function" but with a site this big and this much longevity, the search function is often very difficult to use if you have specific issues you'd like to query, even if you know alot about advanced search function operators and such. I think an answer to something like this (which many other boards do have) would be to actually have a separate forum section and not just a single thread that is strictly devoted to newcomers where "stupid" questions (I don't think there are any especially when you're new here) are not subjected to such criticism. I used the search function before I made my first post and didn't find what I was looking for so I asked my question and the results were not pretty. And after seeing this happen time and time again to people I just decided that this was an unsupportive forum and I just quit coming. I've recently come back because of some renewed interest in certain areas and I'm sad to say it still happens alot and I think a forum section dedicated to helping new members out may alleviate some of this and make this a happier place to be. I mean after all these are puzzles that are in theory supposed to bring us some joy...you shouldn't have to fear getting snapped at for asking a question about a puzzle lol. Just my two cents.


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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Mon Aug 04, 2008 9:40 am 
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Bryan wrote:
To the people that state Ethan should really show he's not like sausage made him out to be, how is he suppose to do that when he's banned?

Easiest thing in the world. Don't do it.

If you were to ask me whether or not Rae deserved to be banned I can answer, knowing what I know now, "No."
If you were to ask me whether or not Pembo deserves to stay banned the only honest answer I can give is, "I don’t know."
If you were to ask me does Ethan deserve to stay banned honesty would force me to say, "Yes."

Bans here have rarely been permanent, and if that is the case here Ethan has demonstrated that he deserves to stay banned longer than the rest. I don't think that was his purpose, but that is what he has done. Pembo, Speedy, and Siraj are doing a good job of making themselves look innocent, Ethan is doing a good job of making himself look guilty.

Quote:
I think people are still wondering about the "You come to me showing no humility" comment.

This truly confuses me. Why would people wonder about that? I confess that I wonder whether or not he really did come to sausage showing no humility, but Ethan makes it out that this was a strange thing to say. It wasn't and it isn't.

I'm not saying that showing humility is in itself a reason for a ban to be lifted, or that not showing it is in itself reason that it should not be lifted. That said they both present evidence in their respective directions. If a person shows true humility there are many situations in which that would be enough to lift a ban. If someone shows no humility that suggests that the ban should not be lifted unless the ban was a complete mistake in the first place.

Regardless of whether or not the ban was a mistake sausage did not think it was, which means that pointing out no humility was shown (if, in fact, no humility was shown) was the most reasonable thing for him to do.

Humility isn't hard, and all it takes is the smallest amount of respect.


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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Mon Aug 04, 2008 3:25 pm 
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The "...humility..." comment bothered me a bit at first. I suspect this is one of those instances where the typed word doesn't convey the feeling behind the words well.

Once, two women both claimed the same baby. They brought their dispute to the king. The king said "Since we can't tell who the real mother is, I'll cut the baby in half and give part to each of you." The first woman agreed to the plan. The other cried, "No, give it to her."

Knowing the true mother, the king gave the baby to the second woman.

This forum is the baby. Ask yourself: Do you care more about winning, or about the baby? THAT is where the humility comes in. Showing defiance shows a willingness to cut. Holding a grudge adds a REASON to cut.

It is Sausage's job to protect the baby. Even if some people will hate him for it, that is what he is trying to do. I respect that.


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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2008 3:53 am 
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I've had some things to say, and I feel that this is a good time.

This forum has slowly been devolving, and several factors didn't really help. Having a single mod can b unfortunate for him trying to manage. The update didn't work so well. The new interface makes it feel different, not the twisty I knew, and since it was in the current state for a long while, but not finished (i.e. "asdf"). The search function made it impractical for getting a lot of information, so I didn't even bother trying to find a way to recover old information easily.

Silly, now sometimes outright stupid, posts and threads are getting more frequent. Pembo was not absolutely terrible, and he seems angelic compared to the standard now. During the first half of this year, Rubo created a stupid thread every week, sometimes two, and rarely missed a week. They are ridiculously entertaining, but much more annoying than entertaining. And Rubo is not learning like pcwiz did (on speedsolving.com).

Stefan, I think, saw it coming, and I constantly hear his "It's people like you who are going to end up making me leave this forum" (from the yahoo group) ringing. I didn't think it was quite so bad, but I don't know whether I just hadn't seen such threads recur so much or whether it really accelerated significantly after I came...
Closing registrations didn't help enough. However, open registrations at speedsolving.com are hurting it. And I used to be devoted to this forum, because I considered spedsolving worse. Now, it's the only barely sane forum left.

Twisty ist tot. :roll:

Since a while, I've been trying to decide whether twisty is dead. But there was never a specific point for it. The noobs just got increasingly annoying, and I stopped trying to be a regular.
I'm not sure what other think about me, but when we essentially lose people like Stefan, it's sad. And too many good people are going, supplemented by too many newcomers. I'm not against trying to be nice to newcomers, but it's futile. And no one paid attention when I once mentioned that we absolutely need a beginner's forum (assuming that we didn't want to mainly remain a discussion forum for experienced cubers, mathematicians, builders, collectors, etc.)

This month, I've been at Mathcamp, and go online after midnight to catch up on forums. The junk is really annoying (at speedsolving, too), and I understand more of what Stefan means.
But one night, I logged on, and learned about the mess involving Thom. I've never specifically liked Thom, but he's more of a friend than not, and the others involved are also friends.
So, for me, twisty finally died. Good topics are sparse, and the only unique part of the forum, puzzle building, is cluttered. I'm trying to select only the 1/3 of topics that might be okay, and most of them are silly. It's so annoying to see a discussion where someone then adds a single post a week later saying something obvious that was already implicit to everyone else in the thread, and very misphrased. And stuff like that. None of the developing of ideas I liked. The closest right now is the 7.08 thread, where David mostly has no idea what he's talking about.
It seems impossible to deal with the bad stuff, as trying to talk about them degenerates and doesn't help.

Now, among the derailings of this forum, these people are banned, and it's just gotten silly. Maybe not because sausage did it, but because of the circumstances that made him have to. Sagebomb was bad back then, but even that was a direct result of the quality of the contributions to the posts.
I'd like to be with the banned member and support them, for some semblance of a cause (it wouldn't be for the membership, but for the affiliation), but I would prefer the right to remain here and post occasional things when it's worth it.

The forum might recover to be something great, I don't know. Or maybe this is how it should be. But I no longer feel like trying to post things, working on ideas.

So, farewell, if not quite goodbye. :|

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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2008 6:02 am 
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Hi :-)

Yet another heated discussion about how to run this forum.

Moderator(s): why not add a new useful feature: filtering out threads started by certain users, similar in spirit to ignoring subforums or subscribing to certain threads.

On the more serious side, there are forum purists who think that every new thread should bring something new and valuable, not answered anywhere before.

And there are people who simply see a forum as a playground for asking anything and tossing out every half-digested idea.

These "old-school" and "new-school" members must coexist peacefully. An over active banning policy is there to serve old-school members (only) the way i see it.

I am not totally happy with this situation. But we already have a few other useful forums, so i'm not solely dependant on this forum anyway.

- Per

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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2008 6:01 pm 
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Bryan wrote:
Delta wrote:
Howver, you all seem to be forgetting there wouldnt probably be TP without sausage.


Correct, but TP wouldn't be what it is without the users.


yes but we only lost a few out of the many members. there are still great people here and even though we lost a few we are still up and running strong.

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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2008 7:53 pm 
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Delta wrote:
yes but we only lost a few out of the many members. there are still great people here and even though we lost a few we are still up and running strong.


Sorry, but considering you haven't even been here for two weeks, I don't think your able to make a valid comparison on how the forum previously was and is now.

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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2008 9:48 pm 
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Bryan wrote:
Delta wrote:
yes but we only lost a few out of the many members. there are still great people here and even though we lost a few we are still up and running strong.


Sorry, but considering you haven't even been here for two weeks, I don't think your able to make a valid comparison on how the forum previously was and is now.

yes but i have been watching the forum for about a year...i just havent been a member.

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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2008 10:12 pm 
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Delta wrote:
Bryan wrote:
Delta wrote:
yes but we only lost a few out of the many members. there are still great people here and even though we lost a few we are still up and running strong.


Sorry, but considering you haven't even been here for two weeks, I don't think your able to make a valid comparison on how the forum previously was and is now.

yes but i have been watching the forum for about a year...i just havent been a member.


Not trying to instigate, but I'm quite angry about the amount of members we have lost - and this is prior to all of this happening.

Many of the members that were here before me, that had accepted me here are mostly gone. It's just really odd for me, that now I'm one of the older members here, which I feel I am not.

I think we should all figure out a way to squash all of this!! I know Sausage is doing the best he can for this site, but maybe we need a way that both sides can agree on something - for the better of the forum so we don't lose anymore great members. The beef has settled, but has there been an actual solution? I just don't want to see this keep rising again - it's happened a few times in recent years.

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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2008 10:57 pm 
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Oh No! Our Pembo is gone now? This is even worse than when Michael Barnes was banned from "boardgamegeek"...

...but we *do* get to use these forums for free on someone else's expense.

Sausage, I do respect your decision, as this is your site; but I will miss those sharp-tongued devils.

cmcf


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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Wed Aug 06, 2008 5:06 am 
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This forum isn't dead, it's cluttered. It's still the only forum for serious builders and collectors, this is and always has been its strength. In my opinion, extending it to other areas was a huge mistake. My suggestion: Get rid of the speedsolving and off topic boards and rename/rearrange the others.

We have:

General Topics
Speedsolving
Puzzle Building
Marketplace
Comments & Suggestions
Help Requests & User Contributions
Off Topic

I suggest:

Building
Collecting (not sure this is needed)
Marketplace
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Why get rid of the speedsolving board? Because the speedsolving.com forum does a much better job anyway, and here it's a source of nuisance.

Why get rid of the off topic board? If something is not twisty puzzles related, there's no reason to speak about it to the community here, you can just as well talk about it anywhere else. And it's a source of nuisance.


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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Wed Aug 06, 2008 5:54 am 
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Not all of us build. Some of us simply collect, and if you get rid of the "General topics" where would interesting new puzzles go that are on the market. As an example, you weren't on the board when the Meffert's Warner Bros. heads, the gundam and a few others were released. To put them in market place wouldn't be the right place because technically no one here would be selling it. (Most likely anyway).

I also like Bram's idea.

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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Wed Aug 06, 2008 6:04 am 
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katsmom wrote:
...if you get rid of the "General topics" where would interesting new puzzles go that are on the market?

Stefan Pochmann wrote:
Other Twisty Puzzle Topics




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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Wed Aug 06, 2008 6:23 am 
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Now I'm not being clear. I can see "Other Twisty puzzle topics" being filled with some of the things that are in the Off topic now, or the ummm, ignorable polls that are under general topics. Collecting could be for just that. Whether we like it or not, the board will be filled with the same old useless stuff that fills it now if people don't learn a bit of self control. Easier said than done for some people.

As an example, I was out hunting (for toys what else) the other day and found a nifty round ball puzzle. Nothing new, or major, but it was smaller than most and I've never seen it before. I also found a brick game that looks like a Rubik's that I just had to have. Other finds included some slide puzzles, and a few ufo's. Self control kept it off the boards. But, they might be interesting to a collector.

If you change the boards, any moderation would be able to remove posts in the wrong area. The way things stand now, I have to scroll through literally hundreds of useless (to me) polls to find information I am looking for.

We all have areas we like the most, the problem is to set up the board to fit everyone's needs. That would be a huge mess. While I agree with Stephen's inital post for the most part, I am glad I'm not the one making the decisions. Speed cubing, where did that come from? I took off for a year or so to do another degree and up it pops.

I also really like the idea a the beginners section. As Taylor has already said, his post is now almost at the bottom of the page. Would a beginner be willing to scroll through hundreds of posts to get to it? Probably not.

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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Wed Aug 06, 2008 7:13 am 
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katsmom wrote:
I can see "Other Twisty puzzle topics" being filled with some of the things that are in the Off topic now

Which could then result in the appropriate deletion/ban. But I simply think people wouldn't post all that severe off topic stuff unless explicitly invited to do so (like they're right now, by the existence of the off topic board).

katsmom wrote:
the problem is to set up the board to fit everyone's needs.

I disagree. Trying to please everyone was - again, my opinion - exactly the mistake. Like said above, speedcubers' and offtopicers' needs can be ignored, as they can perfectly get what they want elsewhere. Consider Tony, for example. He's a building master and sometimes talks about solving, but I think never about speedsolving. Same with Georges and collecting. And both of them have been present at competitions, but never competed. I think this forum would be much better off if it just focused on what it's good at.


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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Wed Aug 06, 2008 7:29 am 
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Stefan Pochmann wrote:
I think this forum would be much better off if it just focused on what it's good at.


I agree completely.

Stefan Pochmann wrote:
Building
Collecting (not sure this is needed)
Marketplace
Other Twisty Puzzle Topics
Site Comments & Suggestions
Site Help Requests & User Contributions


You yourself just gave a good enough reason for having the collecting section. I like the building section. I don't do it myself, but I enjoy seeing what people are coming up with. My point was I think that is needed. That's all, no arguement or anything else intended.

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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Wed Aug 06, 2008 7:44 am 
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katsmom wrote:
As an example, I was out hunting (for toys what else) the other day and found a nifty round ball puzzle. Nothing new, or major, but it was smaller than most and I've never seen it before. I also found a brick game that looks like a Rubik's that I just had to have. Other finds included some slide puzzles, and a few ufo's. Self control kept it off the boards. But, they might be interesting to a collector.

Ok, you convinced me now that an explicit "collecting" board would be good. At first I just wasn't sure because we didn't have one so far and I didn't see what could go in there, but your example is a good one (plus when I think about this forum, I think of building and collecting, so it simply makes sense to offer both as explicit boards).


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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Wed Aug 06, 2008 8:22 am 
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Stefan Pochmann wrote:
katsmom wrote:
As an example, I was out hunting (for toys what else) the other day and found a nifty round ball puzzle. Nothing new, or major, but it was smaller than most and I've never seen it before. I also found a brick game that looks like a Rubik's that I just had to have. Other finds included some slide puzzles, and a few ufo's. Self control kept it off the boards. But, they might be interesting to a collector.

Ok, you convinced me now that an explicit "collecting" board would be good. At first I just wasn't sure because we didn't have one so far and I didn't see what could go in there, but your example is a good one (plus when I think about this forum, I think of building and collecting, so it simply makes sense to offer both as explicit boards).


Or have a running thread for "latest finds" or similar. We do that over at twingalaxies.com for video games finds and deals we come across. Its lasted a long time and keeps everything in one thread.

Edit, I just remember the collection thread, things like that would work well there I think.


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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Wed Aug 06, 2008 9:51 am 
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I agree to Stefan's oppinion but the one after he was convinced...
Dump "Off topic",
dump "Speedsolving",
and rearrange the subforums like Stefan suggested, including a collection-subforum
And I really think, an "ignore thread"-function would be a very good idea.

BTW: Its kind of strange that a (hopefully) fruitful idea like this is posted in a thread like this...


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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Wed Aug 06, 2008 10:04 am 
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This post on Seth Godin's blog showed up yesterday, and is an interesting perspective on the situation here.
http://sethgodin.typepad.com/seths_blog ... -igno.html

I agree with Stefan that what the board needs is an actual focus on what the topic is, and how it is organized. Another [non puzzle related] forum that I visit has specific rules about what is on topic, and even goes so far as to only allow live links that are referenced to that forum or a couple of specific sites. This, compined with prompt moderation of the forums to lock threads that have strayed off topic, or to steer them in the right direction, makes that forum very nice to visit.

I think that one of the contributing factors is a lack of "prompt moderation" in these forums. A topic will be started that is negative or abusive, or becomes that way because of a user or users getting in an argument, and will keep going for days before anything happens. All threads that take this turn are unproductive, at least as far as the forum topic is concerned, and should be promptly locked or deleted. There are many people, myself included, that visit this forum enough, and read enough topics that they could be moderators for a specific forum or the Twistypuzzles forum as a whole.

When I saw the list of users that were banned, none of the names surprised me. At least one I actually felt glad to see on the list, because I felt that that user's attitude toward puzzles or puzzlers they did not like was generally negative, and often abusive. I will however miss Pembo's posts about users posting too much... :wink:

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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Wed Aug 06, 2008 11:02 am 
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Most of my posts here have been in the speedsolving section, as that's my 'area of expertise', but I come here more for the building board. I would have no objections to removing the speedsolving section and just sitting back and watching the builders. I agree with Stefan's suggestions.


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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Wed Aug 06, 2008 11:42 am 
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I used to post very often and also used to visit often too. Now I find that I read less than half the threads, post less often, and visit the forum less. :?

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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Wed Aug 06, 2008 1:06 pm 
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I really like Stefan's ideas on restructuring the boards. I especially like the idea of dropping the off-topic and speedcubing boards, as they are better served elsewhere. Not sure about the general discussion board tho- maybe General Puzzle Discussion? After all, where would people post stuff like the announcement of a new Meffert or V-cube puzzle- maybe marketplace, but then that board will get cluttered with announcements rather than just what it's for.

I also have had a bit of time to think through what has been said and what has been done. We can say it's all water under the bridge, but really, it isn't. There are still some really great people out there who were banned, and historically, bans aren't permanent. I think the problem here is that these guys did some things despite being warned by the admin. That was a fair situation. Sausage specifically asked them to not do something, and they did it anyway. And I would venture to bet this whole thing would have been dropped and most of them reinstated shortly afterward, if there hadn't been all the negative responses and bickering going on. Now, Sausage is in a pickle because if he reinstates them, it looks like they "won". Had they just let things cool down, it wouldn't be his dignity and authority on the line here, and it would have been a simple matter of "you can come back, but don't do it again".

Puzzlemaster is dead-on about the prompt moderation of threads. A number of people insisted this site needs more moderators. I think since Sausage isn't here every day, maybe ONE active moderator wouldn't be a bad idea. But I would say Sausage is they guy who should appoint it, not some public poll. Nominations and/or suggestions maybe, but he still runs things. One active moderator would probably have squashed this problem, though I keep going back to the fact that these guys were asked to knock it off, and they persisted.

I don't know if this is by design, or just by the nature of the selection, but by clearing out things like the general discussion, off-topic and speedcubing, the site's target audience age group will probably raise slightly. Those boards tend to attract the 12-15 year-olds, and while I have nothing against the age group, there's a maturity issue associated that can be problematic. I really don't know anyone on this site personally, but I would venture to guess that those that were banned probably fall in or around that age group. If not, maybe they just acted like it. :) I can't imagine many 30+ year-olds hanging out in a chatroom, and considering themselves part of a "group" #...? Maybe focusing on the strengths of this site- collecting, building, marketplace, etc., will make the site boring to those who would be obnoxious. Don't get me wrong- I'm not saying that older folks don't enjoy an off-topic conversation, or discussing speedcubing, or that a 12 year old isn't capable of behaving properly in a forum, but I'd bet the statistics would be in my favor.

Anyway, hopefully things will start looking up, but I would think there are some apologies needed, and I wouldn't expect to see them from either side any time soon.

Maybe I'm wrong here, I don't know, just my opinion, so feel free to ignore it.


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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Wed Aug 06, 2008 3:12 pm 
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:solved:


Last edited by merlintocs on Thu Aug 07, 2008 10:47 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Wed Aug 06, 2008 3:49 pm 
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I havnt been on this forum for a long time but I have been reading TP for about a year. It wasnt long before I got a Warning, I was quite sure where the line was, but apperently not. I said that Rubo's treads where mostly stupid and I regret what I said today. I am not a bad guy or anything but I was just a little bit angry that day I guess. But I think that it was REALLY nice that Sausage gave me a chance instead of killing me after a month on TP. This proves (atleast to me) that Sausage is not "mad with power" that some people have said.

I also really hope that the forum layout will be changed, then it will be MUCH easier to be updated on everything around here and you can do more reading instead of more searching. <<<3

Alex love :wink: <3

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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Wed Aug 06, 2008 5:30 pm 
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I agree with Stefan as well. However, this has been discussed before and suggestions as to the boards have been made. So I'm not sure if it will actually happen.

If such changes do take place I very much hope there will be a collection board. As I am mainly collecting, this would be the most interesting to me. Next to what katsmom wrote about (sharing your newest addition to your collection) threads like "collection", "Items you don't see everyday or that sold for a high price" and maybe "puzzles in public" could go there.

Celia


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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Wed Aug 06, 2008 5:49 pm 
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Hi Guys, some really good discussion here and I thought I should chime in with my thoughts and/or position:

* Speedsolving - I was not 100% a fan of the introduction of this forum, but I think Sandy's intention was to provide at least some sort of facility for the collectors and builders who like to dabble in that sort of thing. It's not part of our roots as a collectors and builders board. But then who would have guessed that it would attract a certain type of crowd. If the majority believe that it should perhaps go (I will run a poll at some point), I will certainly put it to Sandy that this section be dissolved and perhaps we could donate the data to one of three great speedcubing forums that currently exists.

* Offtopic - A tricky one because it can serve as a very good way of getting to know each other a little better and our other interests. Perhaps there are a couple of things that can be done here. It might be possible to set up a rule that games and whatnot are not allowed, and that the forum does not allow posts from there to show up in the "New Posts" link. I think that is possible, I'll check it out.

* Moderators - A few notes, yes I have had my eye on a few people for quite some time now and gave some recommendations to Sandy when we were considering it (in fact our choice was too great!). However, before we started having problems about 2 years ago, the place pretty much looked after itself. I am wondering how necessary it will be to have more moderators with those dearly departed. It is true that I have not always been as active and timely as I should be especially in the last 9 months due to a very busy move. However, I don't always post, but I am always watching. That is how I track the behavioral history of certain people. The last point is that I am also under a chain of command. This isn't my forum, I'm just the caretaker, and adding a moderator will need to come with Sandy's permission. I need to wait for that a bit longer.

* Bannings - I hate doing it, I have not done it that much, and it takes heck of a lot for me to do it. I put out a few warnings, but it takes a few and then couple of PMs before I make a final decision. Not a pleasant task.

* This forum - I am very proud of this forum and the people on it. I have a really good feeling about everything again and believe we have some great stuff coming up (anniversaries!). While I was still living in Sydney, the responsibility on top of everything else I had on my plate was getting a little much, but since getting back to the country, I have so much more time now.

I very much appreciate all the supportive emails and PMs over the last few days. I have been really encouraged and thank you all very much.

Wayne

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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Wed Aug 06, 2008 6:51 pm 
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flambore wrote:
I can't imagine many 30+ year-olds hanging out in a chatroom, and considering themselves part of a "group" #...?

We do have 1 or 2 that sit in the 'older' age bracket.
Also, once again I would like point out that while # has members that are banned here, it doesn't mean # endorses all that has happened. I've been on that chat for over a year, and I don't want people slandering it who don't really know much about it.

flambore wrote:
Maybe I'm wrong here, I don't know, just my opinion, so feel free to ignore it.

I just can't ignore something that I am very fond off being slated, when it needn't be.

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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Wed Aug 06, 2008 7:10 pm 
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I would support the idea of getting rid of the Speedsolving and Off-Topic boards, although I'd like for the data to be available somewhere in case people want to look at it. There are definitely a couple of useful/interesting topics in those areas. Perhaps they could be put in a "dead subforums" section where normal users can view topics but not post in them?

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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Wed Aug 06, 2008 7:38 pm 
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I think the speedsolving should stay. There seems to be good activity there. Not to mention how many posters have their best times in their signatures. It seems to be an important facet to many people.


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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Wed Aug 06, 2008 7:45 pm 
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joey wrote:
flambore wrote:
I can't imagine many 30+ year-olds hanging out in a chatroom, and considering themselves part of a "group" #...?

We do have 1 or 2 that sit in the 'older' age bracket.
Also, once again I would like point out that while # has members that are banned here, it doesn't mean # endorses all that has happened. I've been on that chat for over a year, and I don't want people slandering it who don't really know much about it.

flambore wrote:
Maybe I'm wrong here, I don't know, just my opinion, so feel free to ignore it.

I just can't ignore something that I am very fond off being slated, when it needn't be.

I guess there's always some exceptions to every rule, but as far as being slated, this is what those people chose to use in order to identify themselves, so that's where the association comes from.


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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Wed Aug 06, 2008 9:10 pm 
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Hi guys,

I think one of the problems here and on other boards is that conversations naturally go on tangents while the boards don't so much...that is to say, the threads are linear and the discussions are not. Too bad the threads cant branch: I think of this as similar to a fractal. Our forums are like pipes carrying water while our conversations resemble river systems.

For example, if someone starts a thread then that thread could "belong" to him/her, in the sense that he or she could mark a post as a branch to keep the main thread on topic.
If suc was in place then when people bomb the word association game thread with a lot of posts, making nearly every other post "rubik's cube," then draconic could have marked those posts a "sub thread" that didn't show up on the main thread.

The same with the recent 7.08 discussion: my commentary and what followed, being tangent to the main discussion idea of the thread, should have been off on a branch, a sub thread, and not visible on the main thread - other than a clickable note of its existence. In such a case perhaps like the thread's originator, someone replying could mark their own post as a sub thread.

Only the thread's originator and moderators could cancel a branch.

Just a thought,

David J


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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Thu Aug 07, 2008 4:12 am 
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flambore wrote:
I really like Stefan's ideas on restructuring the boards. I especially like the idea of dropping the off-topic and speedcubing boards, as they are better served elsewhere. Not sure about the general discussion board tho- maybe General Puzzle Discussion? After all, where would people post stuff like the announcement of a new Meffert or V-cube puzzle- maybe marketplace, but then that board will get cluttered with announcements rather than just what it's for.

I didn't suggest dropping that "general" board. Note the "Other Twisty Puzzle Topics" in my suggestion, that's supposed to be the same board, only renamed and shifted further down in the list of boards. Because right now, its position and name both invite a very broad spectrum and set the tone for what the forum appears to be about. I'd rather see building and collecting emphasized by putting them first. Btw, why on earth did the speedsolving board get the #2 spot, ahead of building and marketplace?

sausage wrote:
* Speedsolving - I was not 100% a fan of the introduction of this forum, but I think Sandy's intention was to provide at least some sort of facility for the collectors and builders who like to dabble in that sort of thing.

Speedsolving I think is really not needed here. People interested in that can just go to speedsolving.com. Note that I'm specifically after "speedsolving", i.e., the seriously competitive version of just solving at all. And the occasional solving (not speedsolving) threads would very well fit into "Other Twisty Puzzle Topics".

sausage wrote:
* Offtopic - A tricky one because it can serve as a very good way of getting to know each other a little better and our other interests.

Right. I thought about that last night, too. A community is not just the community topic, but also the people. My suggestion is another board called "Our members" or "Personal". There people could post their baby pics etc. But a real "off topic" area with threads that neither have to do with our expressed common interest nor with us? No reason to have it here except killing time.


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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Thu Aug 07, 2008 4:35 am 
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Hi :-)

Many good ideas lately how to "shape up" this forum. Some suggestions are easily doable if the big guns here allow and affectuate it. Other suggestions are of the nature where the forum software simply does not support it. I would personally miss if some of the suggested threads/subforums were simply thrown on the fire and burnt. We have to keep those old discussions somewhere. Keeping them as read only is a great idea. If such major changes will take place i would also suggest a "lighter" policy for becoming a member. Having to wait for weeks seems unnecessary. How about instant access to some of the not so main subforums and then later after a "freshman" period being granted post access to the main subforums like building and collecting. Just an idea ... This is doable by introducing user groups. Or at least that's easily doable in a bunch of other forum software. I have never had admin access to any phpBB board/forum.

- Per

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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Thu Aug 07, 2008 8:54 am 
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I've stayed quiet for this discussion, mostly just taking in information and keeping my thoughts to myself.

There is one thing I'd like to share.


Talk of adding moderators and dripped in and out of this conversation. Mention of a single active (as in regular poster, not a lurker) mod being added just has bad news bears written all over it if you ask me.

Doug's idea seemed to make the most sense to me, suggestion of the instatement of a panel (3-5) moderators. However, if this sort of thing were to be done, there would have to be some sort or strict template on what sort of actions are allowed and how mods would handle each situation.

As for who chooses the select few, I feel that the ultimate decision should be left up to Sandy and by extension Sausage, BUT this forum wouldn't be anything without it's members, so what seems like a logical solution for this would be to have some way to privately send suggestions of possibly moderators and explanations why promotion should be considered for them.


I don't know where else I'm going with this, so I'll leave it there.

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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Thu Aug 07, 2008 9:49 am 
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Please allow me to add my 2 cents too. :)

The "Building" forum was great to add, and it has already
become a highlight for the entire twisty puzzle website.

A "Collectors" forum would definitely be welcome. As for the
"Speedsolving" forum, I would not cry if it disappears, as I never visit it.
But I would surely be thrilled to see the "Help Requests & User Contributions"
forum to be renamed to "Puzzle Help, Solutions and Contributions" forum.
I believe the word "Solutions" adds more glamour to it! :mrgreen:

I don't know if all these are feasible, I am just making suggestions.

Regarding the recent incident/situation: Even if we assume that
a member was right, it is not right (IMHO) to start some sort of
supportive movement which could divide the forum into two parties.
Remember, this is a puzzle forum and we are here for puzzles, not
debating or non-puzzling. And as most of us know, a pure democracy
never works in forums, but "controlled" democracy does. Sausage has
allowed others to read and go to the links, he has not deleted them.
Think about it.

And although I am already missing some members (Pembo for example),
I hope reason will return and in the future we will have those members back.
I trust and support sausage on this, he has never given a trace of
immature behaviour for years. Instead, he has been very fair and always
given warnings. All members should respect those warnings, seniors or juniors.

End of story.


Pantazis

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 Post subject: Re: Situation
PostPosted: Thu Aug 07, 2008 10:59 am 
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I think we could keep the Speedsolving subforum and have the decision work out for the better, IF and only if it were changed to a General Solving subforum. To me it has a lot more than the standard competition puzzles. For example (and not just because it's my thread) the Gelatin Brain Applet thread. It has a lot of valuable information on puzzle solutions. Other useful reasons this would be beneficial would include threads that have tips on solving other useful puzzles such as the various cuboid and other mechanisms less common.

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