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Can the TB revisit the Commercial links in Signatures issue?

Can the TB revisit the Commercial links in Signatures issue?

 

Old Apr 16, 12, 2:01 pm
  #16  
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Having had direct experience of serving on the committee, I don't really think that's feasible. At times, review of signatures is associated with other moderator activity and issues which may have arisen with members and incidents which mods have dealt with, and that is obviously considered confidential to moderators.

And perhaps more sadly, you do need (and way more often than I expected ) to have more tools available than simply asking to get members to conform to the signature rules as some can and do refuse to change their signatures.

And also, having done it for 18 months, it is an exceptionally dull job. I'm not sure I would wish it on enthusiastic people!
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Old Apr 17, 12, 8:24 pm
  #17  
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IMHO, there shouldn't be any advertising (or referral links) to any other sites other than direct links to FlyerTalk in peoples signatures.

IMHO, (and emphasis on the IMHO) the reason the rule was changed is because it wasn't consistenly enforced and some mods just didn't seem to care if people were posting things in the sigs that other mods did (at least that's what it seemed like).

Personally, I think they're a bad thing.
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Old Apr 17, 12, 9:02 pm
  #18  
 
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Originally Posted by Jenbel View Post
Having had direct experience of serving on the committee, I don't really think that's feasible. At times, review of signatures is associated with other moderator activity and issues which may have arisen with members and incidents which mods have dealt with, and that is obviously considered confidential to moderators.

And perhaps more sadly, you do need (and way more often than I expected ) to have more tools available than simply asking to get members to conform to the signature rules as some can and do refuse to change their signatures.

And also, having done it for 18 months, it is an exceptionally dull job. I'm not sure I would wish it on enthusiastic people!
Of course after the new volunteer committee rules on what is appropriate they can then ask the senior moderator(s) to action the ruling. No need for other volunteers to be involved.
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Old Apr 18, 12, 6:24 am
  #19  
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Originally Posted by Jenbel View Post
Having had direct experience of serving on the committee, I don't really think that's feasible. At times, review of signatures is associated with other moderator activity and issues which may have arisen with members and incidents which mods have dealt with, and that is obviously considered confidential to moderators.

And perhaps more sadly, you do need (and way more often than I expected ) to have more tools available than simply asking to get members to conform to the signature rules as some can and do refuse to change their signatures.

And also, having done it for 18 months, it is an exceptionally dull job. I'm not sure I would wish it on enthusiastic people!
Why not try adding one or two non-moderator volunteers to the committee, and only have it deal with the signature portion of any issues?

As Q Shoe Guy said, that committee would make a ruling, and then senior moderators would implement it.
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Old Apr 18, 12, 6:57 am
  #20  
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Originally Posted by Q Shoe Guy View Post
Of course after the new volunteer committee rules on what is appropriate they can then ask the senior moderator(s) to action the ruling. No need for other volunteers to be involved.
And I'm saying as someone who spent 18 months on the review team, that that is not a workable solution. Having to farm out all aspects of enforcement to a group of mods who are not part of the decision making process is not a good step forward and given the inevitable delays with working with a group of people online would really lengthen out the whole process.

In addition, having a group of people who are not moderators manage this would actually make the situation more confused. At the moment, if you (or anyone) has a problem with a signature then you report it to any moderator. They notify the review team, but all other mods can also see the notification, so you know if someone has already alerted on a signature or not. The review team deliberates and acts if they consider it appropriate. If the member refuses to comply with their request then the review team discuss, cajole, warn, suspend and ultimately permanent ban as required in an escalating process where they are in control of the process.

Under your idea, someone sees a signature they don't like. They probably won't know about this volunteer group (there's a significant proportion of members who don't even know who/what mods are afterall, let alone TB and we have a TB election every year - some members are entirely focussed on the important things about FT and not the management and regulation), so would probably still report it to their mod, who would then have to forward on the concerns to the volunteer group. There's then no co-ordination between mods, so they don't know if anyone else has reported the concern, and if the signature is concerned with something in particular that is happening on a specific forum, then the review team cannot be told of the background which might provide mitigation.

The review team would then start the process of review and deciding to act - if they decided that action was required, they'd have to ask the senior mods to start engaging with the member to change the signature, since I don't think a non-mod person can act officially to try and enforce the TOS. At that point it effectively moves firmly back into mod control, and a group was not tasked with this originally due to their workload already is now having to run the whole thing. Even if you allow that a non-mod volunteer could make the original approach to the member but the member remains unresponsive (and given that it's a non mod making the request, the response from many members might be to tell them to get lost since the paradigm of mod as TOS enforcer is the accepted one, anyone else might look like they are butting in), it would be against mod practice just to ban on command - it's not something as a mod I would be able to do - we are expected to communicate with the member to inform them how and why they have been banned etc. And we obviously could not share any communication about that banning with the non-mod committee.

So I foresee a number of practical difficulties, from my experience on the committee and what the work generally entails. Yet, you don't seem prepared to listen to that, substituting what you think should/does happen, with what actually happens.
Originally Posted by kipper View Post
Why not try adding one or two non-moderator volunteers to the committee, and only have it deal with the signature portion of any issues?

As Q Shoe Guy said, that committee would make a ruling, and then senior moderators would implement it.
kipper, the signature committee already does deal only with the signature portion of the problem. But as a completely fictitious example, a mod might say to the review team 'Member A has a bit of a thing for Member B. They had a spat recently in which they both got warned and now member A has a signature referencing the incident - is this acceptable?' and we'd go and check the signature and if it said something like 'Member B is a big fat troll' it wouldn't be; if it was a veiled but negative illusion then it probably wouldn't be; if it said something like ' there are big fat trolls on FT' then it probably would be as being too generic to be traceable back to one member. If you didn't know the full background between the pair though, you would not necessarily know the second one was still an attack - but member B could and would still feel attacked and harassed (which could lead to levels of further escalation etc). So sometimes, you need to know the context to be able to see what is the message behind a signature and that the member may be using their signature to send a message - and not one which is necessarily welcomed on FT.

Adding 'lay people' to the review team could be a better option than turning it over entirely to them, but the bigger the team gets, the more complicated it becomes also. Would the benefit of doing so be greater than the cost of enlarging the team? It's hard for most to judge since they don't see the deliberations - I would say it's better to ensure you have a group who have divergent opinions, so on contentious issues you get a good discussion from all points before you reach a group decision than the mod/non-mod divide you seem to be seeing again.
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Old Apr 18, 12, 7:58 am
  #21  
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Jenbel, thank you for the peek behind the moderator curtain. I know there is a reluctance to allow posters to see how mods run things, but even someone as sceptical of moderation as me can appreciate the challenges mods face when we are permitted to hear about how things are dealt with.

Originally Posted by bhatnasx
IMHO, there shouldn't be any advertising (or referral links) to any other sites other than direct links to FlyerTalk in peoples signatures.

IMHO, (and emphasis on the IMHO) the reason the rule was changed is because it wasn't consistenly enforced and some mods just didn't seem to care if people were posting things in the sigs that other mods did (at least that's what it seemed like).

Personally, I think they're a bad thing.
When I first found out about the liberal policy with regard to sigs, I was shocked. I put an ad for my local pub up for a while just to see if I could and...I could.

I am still not comfortable with sig lines being allowed to be used for profit. But I don't know that an outright ban of off-FT links is appropriate. I have such a link in my sig line currently, but it's not for profit (unless getting my promised, pinkie-swore LIFETIME benefits back is a considered 'for profit' )

So while I am not comfortable with the status quo, trying to create standards to allow some off-FT links but disallow others would put the mods even more in the position of picking winners and losers. And I am loathe to do that. So this may well be a case of 'perfect is the enemy of good enough...'
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Old Apr 18, 12, 8:45 am
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Originally Posted by bhatnasx View Post
IMHO, (and emphasis on the IMHO) the reason the rule was changed is because it wasn't consistenly enforced and some mods just didn't seem to care if people were posting things in the sigs that other mods did (at least that's what it seemed like).
That has been my impression as well, and both you & I seem to be of minority opinion.

Even before the current sig policy went into effect, not all MODs took consistent action toward referral links in sig that I'd RBPed. That is very frustrating from a general member's POV, a policy that's not universally reinforced on FT.

Now we spell out and move on to a more "liberal" policy w/r/t links in sig, lumping line-cutting referrals, self-promo links and free ad under this blanket and open-to-interpretation coverage. Has FT become a better place because of it? Not in my book.
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Old Apr 18, 12, 9:22 am
  #23  
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Jenbel, thanks for explaining how it all works "behind the scenes" re: signature committee.

On a different note - TB doesn't pick moderators, ambassadors, volunteers, so any suggestions re: those should go to the Community Director directly via PM.

Cheers.
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Old Apr 18, 12, 10:35 am
  #24  
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Originally Posted by SkiAdcock View Post

On a different note - TB doesn't pick moderators, ambassadors, volunteers, so any suggestions re: those should go to the Community Director directly via PM.

Cheers.
Agree, but there IS value in the TB talking about amendments to the TOS, including sig guidelines.

As I say, I am personally not comfortable with the current policy. But am also hard pressed to come up with something better....so I hope suggestions continue to be discussed.
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Old Apr 19, 12, 6:46 am
  #25  
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Originally Posted by kokonutz
Originally Posted by SkiAdcock View Post

On a different note - TB doesn't pick moderators, ambassadors, volunteers, so any suggestions re: those should go to the Community Director directly via PM.

Cheers.
Agree, but there IS value in the TB talking about amendments to the TOS, including sig guidelines.

As I say, I am personally not comfortable with the current policy. But am also hard pressed to come up with something better....so I hope suggestions continue to be discussed.
i agree w/ you koko re: discussion re: signatures. Someone may have an idea the committee can use. I was just pointing out that discussions re: mod, ambassadors, mods should go to the community director. Cheers
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Old Apr 20, 12, 11:46 am
  #26  
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Originally Posted by SkiAdcock View Post
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i agree w/ you koko re: discussion re: signatures. Someone may have an idea the committee can use. I was just pointing out that discussions re: mod, ambassadors, mods should go to the community director. Cheers
What about something like, "no referrals, disclosed or undisclosed, that benefit the referring member, and no encouraging members to request a referral from the poster will be permitted" as a start?
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Old Apr 20, 12, 12:59 pm
  #27  
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Originally Posted by SkiAdcock View Post
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i agree w/ you koko re: discussion re: signatures. Someone may have an idea the committee can use. I was just pointing out that discussions re: mod, ambassadors, mods should go to the community director. Cheers
Dammit, you could have posted that before my mega long post
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Old Apr 22, 12, 8:33 am
  #28  
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Originally Posted by Jenbel View Post
Dammit, you could have posted that before my mega long post
Actually I thought your long post was very informative

Cheers.
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Old Apr 23, 12, 9:57 pm
  #29  
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Originally Posted by kipper View Post
What about something like, "no referrals, disclosed or undisclosed, that benefit the referring member, and no encouraging members to request a referral from the poster will be permitted" as a start?
Rules are only good if they're actually enforced.
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Old Apr 24, 12, 5:53 am
  #30  
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I have to agree with that. Previously, signature rules banning advertising were sporadically enforced and when they were, took an awful lot of moderator time, for, to be honest, very little return.

This is a big ask, to go back to moderating signatures as closely as this. What is the big benefit from doing so? People who don't like seeing adverts always have the option of turning them off so they can no longer see them. The rules are set up so they cannot be too intrusive (and that is enforced). People are somehow offended by seeing blue words in a sig which says 'click here for a referral' instead of 'come to the BMI do'? That's a don't sweat the small stuff for me
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