Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Super mods

It's that time again, when the members are buzzing and bids are being placed for power, there's more disarray than usual, and people are clamouring at the suggestion forum for answers: Rich has super mods. Three of them — Aeshma, Nintendo_dude, and me.

Contrary to the first moderator applications, however, there hasn't been much euphoria among us, since there are only three of us and the idea was a serious matter way before now enough to deny public application. The concept of moderation wasn't implanted until October, when a lie about Grand Theft Auto San Andreas' release date was closed, and later on someone piped up about the idea of employing moderators (if you have the patience to traverse the dead topics squeezed in the back of the forum roster, you'll see how much it mattered to them in an environment of aristocracy) and it suddenly became an issue as hot as the 2000 American presidential election — people were bickering over who was competent and who wasn't, the arguments made it hard for the forum to recover from the ignominy of Spam Fest, and the registration influx came to a screeching halt.

Then, on 17 March 2005, the problem seemed resolved. Rich had announced that he was going to appoint moderators for forums and he was taking applications at an email address on the server. On 20 March, the mods were set and it took a day (against the forecasted week) to get the mod functions running. Applications for the General Boards were to follow shortly.

Personally, I can see the psychosocial logic in applying for moderator, but I think it's somewhat odd to give someone the sceptre when they ask for it. Moderators, as you know, run individual forums with the power to move, close, and delete topics and/or posts. Such actions must be backed by enforcement of the rules of the forum. While I'm prepared to bet that the bulk of applications came from really dependable people, I also have seen applications for my own forums from people who hadn't read the rules and probably wouldn't be willing to enforce them as per my orders; next to these were topics on the Super Cheats forums asking for the definition of 'moderator' and an application for one. The answer to the question surrounding this is the psychosocial requirement of uniqueness — if you have a certain title, people are going to remember you by it. And it's evident, too.

Thursday, June 16, 2005


To close out the day I'm going to have to mention a relatively small feud between the members of the Super Smash Brothers Melee forum and the forum mod, Cez. For nearly a week now people have been directly challenging him, alleging that he closed several topics that didn't infringe any of the general rules, and he seems to have retaliated with his own attacks.

I haven't had much time to review the situation, but it seems like neither party has the better claim. These plaintiffs are mostly newbies attacking mods for throwing the rules in their faces a few days in. As for Cez, not only does his attitude signify that he isn't taking appropriate action, but everyone on the moderating team has had some history with dissidents (fortunately for me, I don't have that big a share, Jeroen notwithstanding), so I don't see where he gets off doing what he's doing to keep the situation under control.

Personally, I love Cez as a moderator, but he seems to pride himself a lot over his position, and I can see how that angered several of the people on the forum. In the case of the two forums that Rich thought should not have been closed (one of them was his own), the one 'To the Gfaq'ers...' was a prime example of Cez gloating (reminds you of something, no?) but nevertheless was rife with accusations as to who had pasted and submitted copyrighted material and essentially should have been closed, but the other, which is Rich's flaw of preserving the issue, didn't deviate enough from the topic to be closed on an admin's face.

With such inflated pride also indeed comes sensitivity, as Rich did note in one of the many liberal topics in that forum, which showed that he wasn't naïve (although he's had a history of it before). My answer to Rebel581:
  • Cez was appointed to moderator of that forum when Rich rose his first help-wanted sign from 17 to 20 March 2005 and he, along with Nintendo_dude and another person (who both have become so obscure on that forum that they were both deprecated as moderators when it was a real issue). He was later appointed to the position on the Fan Fiction and Role Play board, where he's famous for his wisecracks (and none of my lectures got very good reviews from him).
  • Super Cheats isn't a site for people who believe in such froth, although a lot of members throw us questions that make us look like we're a secure haven for them, but that's only natural for a site of the genre.
And even though it's past been made clear that 'glitch characters' do not exist, the question is still raised. Hell, it'll probably go down with the moon in Ruby and Sapphire as one of the biggest Nintendo hoaxes that ever brooded on the Internet.

Another one on the end of the year

For a long period of time I had kept people waiting on the PokéLab for the person that I would officially appoint to my position upon resignation. Through having to find a computer that doesn't keep me from writing this down, I've had plenty of time to come up with an answer. Yesterday I expected to hear an answer from my friend about the applicant I had chosen to supersede me, but in spite of Articuno assuring me that I would receive an answer from him, I never got a notice. Now I can be grateful that I had put Typhlode in the position in advance, although the reason why I had gone on the hunt was because I thought, amidst his abuse of smilies, he would be incompetent.

Even though I failed on the quest, I'm not going to let this be recognised so. Firstly, many of the people I had in consideration had almost no clue of how things worked in the PokéLab; consequently, they would need to consult me when handling situations in the PokéLab, and as long as I still had a say, albeit through another person, the PKMN.NET administration was not going to reconsider our positions (and even if they did have enough knowledge to waive my advice, the fact that he was part of the staff would still be cause for them to refuse to negotiate with him or her). When I announce my resignation tomorrow, I'm going to put this in mind not just to remind everyone for the last and zillionth time of our stance on PKMN.NET but also to embarass Typhlode in front of everyone else in his guild.

Aside from the PokéLab, I can see that Rich has been making some progress on the forums, what with fixing our profiles. Now all he has to do is create something like the Gaming Update Hall of Fame and that'll just about settle my demands for the second quarter. The forums are nearing their first birthday, too, so I want every bit of the beta that it started out as to be quashed completely, no matter how revolutionary it was, and many of the other members on the forums (especially the mods and some people that we've had the cojones to ban) seem to be following my lead. Then again, I've been on BB-optimised forums long before the Super Cheats Forums materialised, so it's only natural to find them at fault.

The Crow's Nest also has a few problems. Ever since the migration, we haven't had much success in regaining our old clientele, although there's been some posthumous registration on our deprecated Proboards version (but Lottie should have deleted it over a month ago, and the new server update probably will complicate things for her once it comes back to mind; SC members had to drive it into the ground to make Rich remove Spam Fest). But I can tell you that the inquiry that occurred after the migration was rather funny, with Fire God insinuating that some of us had not taken precautions to safeguard ourselves and try to narrow down who the hacker was. We're now very aware of who the hacker is, as Greatglitch was put out of order a week later and clues were left afterward — the hacker is Settra, a person that once was on Dark ShadowPsyche's administrative staff but turned evil once he tired of cleaning up the prevalent spam on his forums and was told frankly that Shadow Spam Fest, a carryover from Spam Fest on Super Cheats, was not going to be controlled to some extent. I hate spam, too, but he took it too far.

Following a conversation with PKMN.NET, as I learned in a transcript sent to me by Actionshark, my rules for Greatglitch and my affiliation programme were decommissioned as a penalty for using the PKMN.NET rules as a basis (and the staff alleged that such usage was an infringement of copyright). I don't see any more interest in running that programme anyway, as I predicted that it would only lead to social problems. And with an affiliation mania resulting, I may have been right.

On a lighter note, Pokémon Master Eddie seems to have recovered from his accident, since the Crystal Club Agency seems to be up and running again.

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

End of the school year....

After a strenuous amount of study that has demanded the majority of my time and defracted a lot of attention from my real friends in the world, my year in Atlantic County Vocational Technical School has ended. (Thank the Lord; I've had enough of being harassed by those people who don't appreciate what I do to earn myself a living over the Internet.) The past year, in spite of the gradual increase in workload, was a lot better than my freshman year in the scope that I was finally rid of this anti-Pokémon business in the school, yet there remained a great deal of things to do in time already consumed by finding work and studying for A+ certification (and the gits at the Academy never granted anyone in my class the real examination, although our instructor had promised it at the end of the year; but given my stress I would have failed it anyway).

The general review of the year: bimestral year as usual, juggling rising intensity of dissidence at PKMN.NET, a seduction attempt on last year's cruise, and having my load at Super Cheats increase due to the inauguration of the forums. The PokéLab being formed, getting pushed into it, my name being mud with the PKMN.NET administration, and lots of bloodshed to follow. A new job at the local supermarket to round it all out.

At least it's safe in my mind to start putting everything in review here, so that I don't have to go around on ten or twenty different forums in which I'm this revered-and-hated aristrocrat and type up different tales to explain away events. I hope that the stories I tell in the posts to follow in my blog will serve a lot in the future to aid against allegations such as those that have passed.