Friday, January 13, 2006

The N00b Holocaust

Well, after seeing James O'Malley try to criticise ITV à mon mode (took me a month), I decided to dig down for another thing to put in here to fill up the time:'s members are talking about a customisable filtering system:

Carpetted: The swear filter should be made so that you can turn it off or on. Or, members who are too young/don't state their birthday have all the little bad words blanked out in *, but members who are old enough, or turn it off or something can view the cusses. Not that I like swearing or watching people swear, but lots of people are evading the swear filter, rules or no rules, and... yeah. Just my opinion.
Eszett: People evade it readily.

Bingo. People evade it readily. They've finally admitted to condoning such stuff on a forum that, as I made clear in the topic about the sex fics, is touted as 'the place for everyone'. (Here's proof. This can also be found at the top of every page on that forum.) Swear filters should not be customised by the user, in case you're on a public computer that'll block the page if it has an nXp filter installed. When you look at, there exists no consistent filter. (Again, proof. Oh, and more proof!) And many of the traffic of swearing and berations gets channeled to the new members, which aren't in short supply due to's synonymy with objective walkthroughs and news bulletins (although I heard the owner is about to sell the domain off and withdraw the site, but that was back in June and there show no signs of slowing).

Let's move on to SuperCheats. People that are familiar with that forum and with the triumvirate may know of the 'Annabel Burnination Project' that Jamarie created and submitted to Shiny Zapdos and Bad Wolf to get their yeses to it. We should also be familiar with Bleepman's very concise definitions of 'newbie' and 'n00b': the former being a new person and the latter being an inept member that is under the impression that he or she knows everything (later reworded to just 'idiot'). And then we should be familiar with Gaming Update's general harshness on new members.

Now that you've seen the two theses (which probably will give this the record for having the most links for a single article), you should have an idea of what I'm getting at. The 'n00b' problem. As recently as last night, Marc pHX (owner of the forum) assured me that these peiople were merely 'giving their blood' to keeping the forums under the rules. However, I have to disagree with him on this matter — these are new members that have no prior experience on that forum and probably have just read the rules, and they're doled discourtesies in the form of badmouthing and immediate referrals for ban. (This does not apply to people such as Justin14, who sexually harassed Juli last summer.) Here's the negative side of the spectrum: doubt.

Then we have a positive side to the spectrum: At my school, freshmen are supposed to be given more courtesies than the upperclassmen that have accumulated enough credits to graduate. As a result, we're rudely hit in the facwe with the policy to ignore their cutting in the luch line, thereby delaying our eating time by ten minutes when you add underclassmen that jump in with their phantasmal superiority cards in tow. Add the presence of cliques, which we learned are natural at that stage and are evident in the density of walking groups and MySpace friend lists. Then sprinkle it with egotism and you have a mixture that forms a barricade between the freshmen and the upperclassmen.

So where do we find middle ground? On the forums, new members will become people that you'd want to enroll in your team or roleplay. In school, they represent seeds ready to sprout into civil men and women. What they have in common is that we were once one of them. The people we upperclassmen are prejudiced toward, we once were and will never again be. There is also the fact that they, like us, are subject to the same legislation and rules that people at higher grade levels are obligated to follow. We are one people. We are humans.

And if it is supposed to be that way, why are attitudes toward the new members and us so different? The older members are more experienced and will expect people that haven't gotten to their level yet to eventually know how to master something. But if you are a parent and that's your philosophy, you're only going to make your child fail. And if you're in the position of moderator or administrator on a forum, it is your responsibility to grow these members into people that will contribute in an appropriate manner instead of saying 'When will you learn?' to every little thing.

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