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CGI-Quality said:
mZuzek said:

Yeah, I'm a little bit torn on the whole mod situation showing up here in this thread. We can dismiss them and pretend it's a non-issue all we want, but there has been a number of people coming here to express their distaste for the situation and ignoring that is ignoring a real thing that's going on. I can't speak for them, because I haven't been moderated in years (though a mod did approach me via PM recently), but I do sometimes feel almost... privileged. Like for some reason it doesn't really matter what I say, as long as I'm not being blatantly offensive I can get away with things other users don't seem to. Maybe that's just me, though.

No matter the mod team, mods and users will clash on 'what to do'. Even looking at the totality of this post, on one hand, you say the mods need to make changes, while also acknowledging the users that drive themselves to get moderated (being blatantly offensive puts yourself out there, but mods can't be everywhere at once and many people do not like to report). The answer to that is basically what it has always been — that no matter what changes are implemented, people will disagree with the authoritative side of things. That's not saying nothing can change/evolve/shift, but the clashing will happen.

I know the mods are likely to dismiss these concerns as just moaning from toxic members, and they may or may not be right, but I think there's a certain stubborness, maybe even arrogance, about the team at the moment. They're not really wrong to do what they do, after all the place does have rules. I've always been thankful to the work the mods put in on VGC, because it's what kept the place full of sensible and constructive people, but maybe now, with the reduced activity around and fewer new users, it could be the time to start reviewing those concepts and try to take a more lenient approach to moderations. It's clear that many members have been scared away by the nature of bans here, and funny enough, looking back at some of our oldest users still around, many of them haven't always had the most enviable behavior.

Some of this here also conflicts with itself. You say there's potentially an arrogance to the mods, but then don't really fault them for it. You also thank them for the work, but say they need to be more lenient. For my part, since joining the mods (and relative to my join date in August 2008), I feel we let a lot more go on than past teams would have (discussions like these ~ where the mods were put under microscopes ~ wouldn't have lasted, for example). They just didn't put up with stuff. Back talk? Forget about it. You saw very little in the early years.

On the flipside, we do hone in on things like 'fanboy' or 'troll' (something teams of the past would have let slide — particularly prior to the big site change of 2010).

In the same breath, while we can always improve, without naming names, some of the site's most toxic users (by community/mod feedback), have been removed by this mod team. Of course we are far from perfect, but we are trying to correct issues (as a whole, not just from this particular team).

Maybe we could introduce new ways of moderation? Something that drives people to be more constructive and less toxic, without driving them away? For example, say instead of there being warnings and bans, there's something in between, like a half-ban or something, where the person isn't allowed to do certain actions for a while but can still come around and discuss the matters of their moderation or whatever.

Although I can't speak for what went on before I got on the team, when I joined, I pushed for PMs before Warnings. I'm not sure if it has been a major success, but I believe it has done some good. We're still working on a few universal tools to better assist with moderating, but this suggestion helps keep ideas going. There are a few past mods that I aim to take pointers from while I'm here (makingmusic, Miguel, Smeags, Torillian, and twesterm as the main ones).

All-in-all, thank you for your cordial approach to this, regardless of what I agree/disagree with. 

My take.

...Yeah. I've always respected you and you've done yourself no harm with this post. It's nice to have your views on the matter like this, and nice to know you do care about making the moderating feel more organic and less... dictatorial. But at least from the outside, I do get the feeling not every mod shares that mentality.

I don't remember the moderations being any less or more lenient when I joined and in the time I've been here, but I don't recall reading as many complaints back in the day. Maybe that's because they were stricter, I suppose, but I don't feel that was the case. No, what I get the feeling is happening, and your comments on the subject kinda back it up, is that moderations now seem to be a lot more objective, meaning you go head on into obvious offences (as you put it yourself, "fanboy" or "troll"), but at the same time it feels like certain users sometimes get away with visibly bad behavior because they can be ambiguous enough about it that it doesn't demand instant action when looking strictly at the rules. That was the case with quickrick, for example: kind of an undeniably toxic person, who continued to be toxic for a very long period before finally getting banned. I feel he wouldn't have lasted anywhere near as long in previous eras, and maybe that's because they were stricter, but I think it's moreso because of how he twisted the rules to his benefit just enough for him to be able to troll, and that trolling inevitably will bait in 'victims' into striking back with more direct offences and thus, getting banned for it.

Whatever the feeling is among the mod team, it's clear that that's created fear of them among regular users. I remember a few months ago when I started questioning pwerlvlamy in a discussion and several people immediately came to me privately warning me that I could get banned for that, despite agreeing with me. In this very post you talk about how I sort of contradict myself a few times, well... I wouldn't fully admit it, but deep down it's because I'm afraid of criticizing the mod team. In the end, I kinda know I'm not getting in trouble for saying that, partly because of this reputation I think I've earned of being a 'good user', but the fear is there and it can't exist for no reason.

Well I hate to tell you but this is not 2010 this is not PlayStation 3 this is not the Xbox 360 Wars and from what I can tell it was a foregone conclusion about PlayStation 4 so there's nothing to debate I guess you could say.

I started turning away in 2013 I believe but I date back to 2008, really this gen there's nothing to talk about, it was done after the PlayStation 4 announcement I guess you can say everybody knew what was coming.

In short there's no console war, and there never will be again, I think that's part of the issue, I'm sure all the old heads just come here to check the numbers aside from trollstoppable (Rolstoppable), also known is the greatest troll to ever live, and no one made threads better than him.

Besides agreeing on Rol being the greatest troll to ever live, I'm not sure you're right on this. Many people have used this argument here, of console wars being a thing of the past, but I joined very much at a time when the 8th generation was already done and dusted hardware-wise, and it was still far, far more active than it is now. If anything, the release of the Switch should have made the place more lively again, but it's arguably only gotten more stale since.