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Nepenthe

No More Megathreads (For Now?)

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3 minutes ago, Blue Blood said:

I like this idea. But, would it be possible to maybe keep news out of topic titles? Or even split subforums for Forces and Mania?

There's a thread right now called "Sonic 2 Zone Confirmed", which is cool because we know what the discussion is for without any potential spoilers or unwanted news for those that would rather avoid it. I understand that anything that's officially revealed isn't technically a spoiler, but I think a lot of people would still like to be able to discuss the games without seeing more than they want. Plus there was a Mania leak the other day too. It would just be nice to have that touch of extra security. Not as a hard time to be enforced, but just something that a lot of people would appreciate. 

I agree with this.

Although I will jump into the pools of spoilers myself, I know and respect other people's opinions to keep under wraps.

Things will be spoiled, and it would be nice to have the policy be that Thread Titles do not contain spoiler information. 

If people are curious to see what it is, they can open up the thread. If they don't want to know it, they can avoid it without having the title spoil it already.

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Isn't this just going to further kill the forum activity? Forum activity has been declining rapidly over the last year and now we're stopping the big main conversations about new products?

Why not just keep what's been going on lately, if something significant comes out, it gets it's own thread, but the main conversation is allowed to continue and evolves naturally with whatever direction the conversation takes. 

The proposed approach is going to do the following.

  • Topic is made about a thing....
  • discussion happens...
  • discussion dries...
  • Discussion completely shuts down until something new happens...

At least with the megathreads we can actually have an evolving conversation. But this proposal means we're going to get either an influx of topics which are not going to get many replies or topics which don't get new content posted in.

 

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Also, if I wanted to talk about Boss Battles in Sonic Mania, could I make a new thread for it?

Or would I have to talk about the HBH in the Sega @ SWSW 2017 Topic when they were officially revealed?

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2 minutes ago, Sonictrainer said:

Also, if I wanted to talk about Boss Battles in Sonic Mania, could I make a new thread for it?

Or would I have to talk about the HBH in the Sega @ SWSW 2017 Topic when they were officially revealed?

You could probably make a new thread about it as long as you were offering new information, perspective, etc. and not just repeating what has already been said.

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Don't get me wrong - expecting spoilers for new game not to drop in the Internet, especially on a Sonic forum, is beyond naive. I personally use a spoiler blocker plugin for Chrome on my PC and limit my browsing on mobile to avoid things. Dedicated sub-forums for both Mania and Forces would just help people further. If we're ditching megathreads, what's the downside?

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I'm not entirely sure why we got rid of dedicated subforums. Probably just less clutter. I wouldn't be adverse to that if people put forth the argument, but at the same time I don't think it necessarily helps because the issue here is concerning thread titles, which are going to be updated on the main page the moment one makes a topic, and again on the front page of the appropriate forums whenever a person posts or bumps the thread. So it matters less in the context of helping people avoid spoilers where the threads go than what they're named, I believe.

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Obviously that video wasn't dead the other day and it's now since made unlisted otherwise it wouldn't have been commented on.

So again if that video were live, or confirmed to now be unlisted/pulled, under the rules would we not be able to discuss that or even post it as possible news? Because this really isn't improving forum activity if that's the case, and having a whole topic for that is just ridiculous.

Wait hang on...

So in order to post that... we have to go through already existing topics to find whatever the newest piece of gameplay footage is... just to post that in? 

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8 minutes ago, Mayor D said:

Obviously that video wasn't dead the other day or it was since made unlisted otherwise it wouldn't have been commented on.

So again if that video were live, or confirmed to now be unlisted/pulled, under the rules would we not be able to discuss that or even post it as possible news? Because this really isn't improving forum activity if that's the case, and having a whole topic for that is just ridiculous.

You would be able to talk about it.

Again, most likely in a live topic that was concerning itself with recent Mania gameplay updates.

Because we expect people to be inundating the forum with news updates about things coming out, and if there's a lot of little tidbits that release at once, there's no reason why you can't make a thread concerning all of them, which a small little update like a Puyo mini-game would fit right at home into.

Although, we probably wouldn't be opposed to a topic on this by itself either. Again, we want you to fill up this forum.

We're also not trying to improve posting rates. We're trying to improve post quality and downplay arguments. If you make a thread and it only gets 30 replies, that's likely 30 replies going towards proper discussion of the subject matter in question, which is good, versus a 500 page thread about everything to do with Forces where half of it is instead talking about why Lost World's story may or may not be garbage.

In other words, if you have the capability to navigate the game section NeoGAF while keeping in mind their new topic rules, or you managed to post in the past on SSMB wherein we had subforums for individual games and lots of different discussion points were relegated to their own threads without completely getting confused, you should be able to handle this change.

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4 minutes ago, Mayor D said:

Then explain to me how either making a completely new thread for something that small, or asking members to spend time looking for a topic which just might match it is a better approach?

Because that's still less work than sifting through a topic with 500+ pages?

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Just now, TCB said:

I guess this is the appropriate thread to ask, if I missed the reason why my bad:

Why was the subforum for upcoming games taken down again? Staff decision? Forum software change?

Do you mean why we stopped having subforums for individual games? Most likely admin decision for the sake of keeping the forums neater and not having to constantly move topics and update the forums back to default when the games released.

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2 minutes ago, Nepenthe said:

Do you mean why we stopped having subforums for individual games? Most likely admin decision for the sake of keeping the forums neater and not having to constantly move topics and update the forums back to default when the games released.

Oh. Ok I see.

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I also actually wouldn't mind different sub-forums for individual new games, but since the admins (read: not us) are the ones who have to do the work in creating, purging, and deleting them whenever they get made, it's not really my place.

On a different note, I want to emphasize one thing:  None of this has to be permanent.  This is simply a trial to see which system works best, because as is, the mega thread system simply isn't working.

I'm going to be completely 100% honest here.  Mega-threads are an absolute pain to moderate.  I confess to being extremely lax on moderation lately, more so than what I'm really supposed to be.  When we get reports from these threads, they're often the results of several pages worth of arguments or of recurrrant trends rather than posts that are problematic for standalone reasons (i.e. obvious harassment, linking to inappropriate material, etc.), and it's simply not worth our time and effort to have to sift through all these pages to get context.  It's frankly exhausting, and I appreciate other members of the staff (namely Kiah, because you great!) picking up the pace in my absence, but with how frequently we get reports from the mega threads, it's uinfair to ask them to shoulder the majority of the burden.

Mega-threads proved to be beneficial during the years of Sonic Lost World, the Boom games, and Sonic Runners.  They generally kept the forums relatively clean and we generally need that much in the way of updates.  But as it currently stands, these threads have become absolutely draining to sift through.

But this isn't just for our benefit.  This is actually supposed to make it easier for members to find specific pieces of news, images, etc.  In addition, we constantly find ourselves locking topics and telling people to take it to the mega thread anyway.  So instead of working against the habitual mannerisms of members, we want to try working with them instead.  We do understand that this isn't a perfect solution and that what may be convenient for some will not be so for others.  But at this point, something needs to be done.

With that in mind, again, this does not have to be permanent.  Nothing we do has to be permanent.  We're allowed to change our minds or compromise on a better solution.  If someone makes a new topic on something that works better in a pre-existing topic, it's not a hard thing to merge or move discussions as needed.  And if this new system doesn't work out, we can always just go back to the previous setup and find a better solution.  But as is, this is causing far too much trouble for moderators and members alike, and so we have to experiment to see what works best for our community specifically, not just what seems to work from a logical angle.

Please work with us.  I wanted to end this on a funny, topical meme, but couldn't think of one.

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