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Thread: Rankings

  1. #1
    Senior Member Kurkikohtaus's Avatar
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    Default Rankings

    I've noticed that Quaverion has over 500 posts, but is still a "Senior Member", which seems to kick in at 100 posts.

    Any chance that the member rankings can be broken down a little more? Also, are they customizable on this board? It would be fun to see some music related titles (musician, soloists, conductor, composer...)

    Not that I want to start any posting wars or anything...

  2. #2
    Administrator Frederik Magle's Avatar
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    I agree, and have been thinking about making a new set of "ranks" (user titles) myself. Currently it's just set to the vBulletin default, which is not much fun at all (and it's important to remember that the titles should only be considered good fun - quality in posting is so much more important than quantity in the long run that it's not even funny , but with that said, user titles can still be a nice addition).

    I have a few ideas myself but am open to other input as well in regard to the exact titles. The breakdown will be as follows: 0 (new member), 10, 50, 100, 250, 500, 1000, 2500, 5000, 10000.

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    The big weakness of rankings based on the number of posts is that it tends to encourage a greater element of pure twaddle. There is often a very poor correlation between quantity and quality, and a rank inducement based only on quantity can make that correlation even worse. Several sites I've seen don't have ranks.

    I hope whatever is introduced here is far less complicated than the rankings on the Magle International forum, where the titles leave me both amused and somewhat mystified. Incidendentally, there doesn't appear to be any description anywhere of what those ranks mean, or the break points, and I'm not clear what "regulator" means.

    One other point. Why is there no facility on this site to delete one's old posts? It can be done on other sites using the same software. Does it simply mean tweaking the software?


    Topaz

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    Senior Member Kurkikohtaus's Avatar
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    The administration panel (to which only administrators have access) on most bulletin boards have a check-box with something to the order of: "Users may delete posts"... or some variation of that.

    If the feature is activated, users may... well... delete their own posts. Go figure.

    I have enabled this feature at the Sibelius Forum, I find it a good thing, because sometimes a user will realize his mistakes and delete before being reprimanded by admin.

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    Yes, I think it would be a good idea to enable the delete facility. I have no wish to delete anything but if I did I'd like to think I could do so. Sometimes people may be tempted to post something they realise later was imprudent and would wish to remove it, rather than invite a hostile response of some sort either from Admin or another poster. Clearly, if the post has been quoted there is nothing that can be done to remove all traces.

    Another problem I have encountered here is that it doesn't pick up more than quote. Thus, if A has posted and B has commented including A's posts, you may want to pick up both A & B's posts, but it won't do it; it only picks up B's. On other sites you can pick up nested quotes, which is obviously needed in some situations. Maybe I am doing something wrong but I have tried it several times and it won't work correctly. The quote facility may as well not be offered if it doesn't work correctly.


    Topaz

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    Senior Member Kurkikohtaus's Avatar
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    True, you cannot use the "QUOTE" button more that once, but you can cut and paste from various posts and type in the QUOTE + /QUOTE commands to make yourself look like a real pro.

    Look how I've done it in THIS thread. I even used different colours to show how ridiculous my sad life really is.

  7. #7
    Administrator Frederik Magle's Avatar
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    Alright, a lot to answer

    I'll start from the back. The pretty nasty looking icon - a quotation mark and a plus sign - right next to the "quote" button is actually called "multi quote" (the button will be replaced though), and does exactly what you are requesting. My recommended way of using it is as follows: If you wish to quote three different posts (A,B,C), start by clicking the new "multiquote button" under A and then B, and then finally click the normal "quote" button under C. That should work.

    Regarding the deletion of posts. I have per your request changed the setting so users now can both edit and delete their own posts up to 12 hours after making the post. Users can still not delete threads though, only posts (replies). After 12 hours you have to contact an admin or moderator if you wish to have anything changed (note that editing or deleting posts per user request is strictly at the discretion of the admin/mod.

    Finally, back to the original topic; user titles. Yes I admit that the user titles on Magle International Music Forums may be a little complex (there is however a sticky thread explaining them in the "Information & Announcements" forum), and I definitely intend for the new titles here to be somewhat simpler and generally less "important" on the forum, for example I have no intention of adding any "closed" forums only accessible to members with a certain post count. Btw, the titles on MIMF are based on "naval ranks" and thus a "regulator" is simply a moderator (In the navy a regulator is a member of the Navy Regulation Branch (same as military police)). Anyhow, this is irrelevant to Talk Classical as the titles here will be quite different.

    Regards,
    Frederik

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    Does that mean we could see radio/media represented?

    just asking y'know...for a friend.

    humor implied.
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    RANKS

    When are we going to be put out of our misery? I can't wait to find out what my rank is. I hope it's something swanky so I can tell all my friends, and not something daft as I don’t want them falling over themselves laughing at me.

    The speculation is killing me, and I daren't go out in case I miss something. I could go out a “nothing” and come back to find I’m a “Senior Astronaut Ballade” or “Chief Sub-Mariner Scherzo” or whatever.

    For Kurkikohtaus' attention: I’m wondering whether there might develop a “secondary market” in ranks, where existing ranks can be bought (by the rank conscious) and sold (by those who don’t give a hoot). We might even see them traded on E-bay:

    “For sale: 5 Star General US Marines, 100,000 posts, TalkClassical” $10,000 ono. No timewasters”.

    Topaz
    Last edited by Topaz; Dec-30-2006 at 08:19.

  10. #10
    Andante
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    Regarding Ranks, one of the best [not musical] sites that I go to has no rankings apart from admin and moderator, it does show the number of posts and this seems OK to all members. You soon get to know the type of posts a person makes 50 posts all good and informative as opposed to 2500 posts all frivolous and some just a smiley??.
    They also allow you to delete or edit up until another post has been added after yours, after this your post is locked in, at the mercy of the moderators
    So you really must get it right first time ANDANTE.

  11. #11
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    RANKS AND MODERATION ETC

    I agree with Andante's comment above. I trust that the main point I was trying to make in my post, two up from here, was not not lost, namely that I think "ranks" are an unnecessary contrivance and can give rise to abuse.

    One type of abuse is where "newbies" tend to flood the site with drivel in order to take themselves out of the newbie category. The same thing may also occur at later break points, with consequently more drivel pouring onto the site. The drivel I have seen on some sites is unbelievable, but to be frank it's probably the best a lot of people can manage anyway!

    Another type of abuse - which I have definitely seen on other sites - is where some high rankers (or long servers) behave as if they have a special status. For example, they take it upon themselves to welcome newbies, and assume airs and graces like not responding to posts of people well below themselves in "rank". They seem to form their own cliquey sub-groups where they only chat among themselves, wishing each other happy birthdays, asking about vacations, calling each other by their real names, etc. Some of it is absolutely laughable. I watch and sometimes join in on one or two such sites, but I'm mainly very much tongue-in-cheek with a big grin on my face most of the time. Such sites provide a wonderful view on the world, and human behaviour generally, they really do.

    By "ranks" I am referring to any automatic credit systems based on a post count. I am even including post counts themselves, as this tends to encourage the same type of behaviour as that of awarding grander titles. It's all rather like going back to a Medieval Society with slaves, serfs, lord of the manor, etc and all the rest of class-ridden societies of old. Or who's got the biggest "baton"?

    The only "ranks" I consider might possibly have some value are those awarded solely at the discretion of the site owner, based on overall quality of posts etc, but I have not specific views on how it might be operated. In fact, such a system may prove just as intractable.

    I dislike any form of regulation and moderation other than by the site owner purely for the purpose of keeping good order. I will not normally become active on any site that has interfering moderators from non-Admin personnel. They irritate me. Mostly, in my experience, they know very little about anything apart from their own narrow field, and often they have their own personal agendas in promoting some obscure cause or other. It doesn't usually take long to discover it, and anyone who takes a different view from that of the moderator can get short shrift. In other words, they seldom act truly neutrally. In fact, I reckon they are generally a nuisance and can create more harm than good. While it may appear that they are doing a good job, what is not always seen is the fact that some people who might otherwise join that forum, and provide sensible and useful input, may not do so.

    The way things are done here is very good: trouble-makers get the boot quickly, and any comments by Admin on thread topics are given as normal posters. That's the way it should be. If Admin need more help in getting rid of porn-style posts or adverts, or other types of abusive interventions, that's entirely another matter.



    Topaz
    Last edited by Topaz; Dec-30-2006 at 15:13.

  12. #12
    Administrator Frederik Magle's Avatar
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    Thanks for voicing your opinions, Andante and Topaz! I do acknowledge the potential pitfalls and we (Daniel and I) will try to monitor the situation carefully in order to avoid them. The type of "abuse" which I am most concerned about is the "cliquey sub-groups" you mention, Topaz. With that said, I do believe that the problem is mostly related to the attitude of the individual and that in many cases the attitude of the staff will matter as well. Even in the absence of "ranks" people will likely behave more or less the same. I believe what really matters is the general attitude of the board. If "senior" members are friendly and welcoming to new members, they will be so whether or not they have a title.

    But we'll see. When adding new titles I will do so for a limited "trial period" of 3 months to begin with. After that I will evaluate how it went (including listening to feedback), and if there were any reason for concern then make the appropriate changes. Of course I will continue to monitor things after the trial period as well.

    If the titles leads to abuse (which I truly doubt they will here), something is wrong with the forum overall - not just the titles.

    I mentioned the attitude of the staff, which brings me to Topaz' final point. An opinion which I mostly agree with.

    My basic philosophy is that "transparent" moderation is the best way. This means that moderators generally takes part in the discussions as "members" and not "staff", and rarely interferes unless things get really out of hand and turns into personal attacks. Discussions will be allowed to evolve even if they contain strong contention.
    Also, the staff should always have a generally friendly and helpful attitude (unless when dealing with spammers and the like of course) and never let the "power" get to their heads. That seems like an obvious thing, but I have seen too many forums where that is not always the case.

    Anyhow, those are my (very) basic thoughts on "moderating" and the plan I intend to pursue for this forum. Of course no two situations are alike so it's not written in stone (Read: I retain the right to administrate as I think is best in any given situation ), but I strongly believe it's the best way forward.

    Regards,
    Frederik

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    Quote Originally Posted by Topaz View Post
    RANKS AND MODERATION ETC


    Another type of abuse - which I have definitely seen on other sites - is where some high rankers (or long servers) behave as if they have a special status. For example, they take it upon themselves to welcome newbies, and assume airs and graces like not responding to posts of people well below themselves in "rank". They seem to form their own cliquey sub-groups where they only chat among themselves, wishing each other happy birthdays, asking about vacations, calling each other by their real names, etc. Some of it is absolutely laughable. I watch and sometimes join in on one or two such sites, but I'm mainly very much tongue-in-cheek with a big grin on my face most of the time. Such sites provide a wonderful view on the world, and human behaviour generally, they really do.



    Topaz
    Otherwise known as the "playground effect".

    Ok, I know, a "me too" post, but hey, its still a holiday...
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