Moderate…The Community I have the fortune to moderate is quite civil and other users seem to take pride in that fact alone a lot of the time. For the most part it is noobs, trolls, etc.
If they are suspect and thier post seems out of place then we do have the option of moving it to an area where the sharks lurk…
This can often bring out the true troll and so on.
From that convo we can either kill or cure by side moderation.
As an aside some flip moderator humour below.
DARK ARTS BEGINNER CLASS.
Who and what do moderators do
Moderators have some basic “guidelines” as posted on the moderator forum section to which you should have access.
What constitutes infractions are not always clear and open to some interpretation or experience by individual moderators.
Our armoury consists of wits, experience, and the blood of the enemy button provided by Arduino, oh and a vast army of loyal Arduinites spread through all territories of the Arduino nation.
We quite often have to rely on “reports” from other Arduinites to do a few main things.
To guide us to a post “they” think breaks forum rules.
To be able to use a decision based on past experiences of similar instances to assess if the reporter is correct or not.
In the case of LINKS we sometimes put ourselves in the line of fire by visiting those links directly to assess them external to Arduino. We live for the smell of danger and a random or occasionally risky link.
And lastly make a final decision on what action to take.
We are often Judge, Jury, and executioner and do those duties every time we visit the forum more often than most employees would be able to spend time in there.
We do those duties to the very best of our abilities and with each day face new challenges.
Sure there will, on rare occasions be a mistake but by far they are super rare probable less than 0.1%.
Occasionally we will use the moderator section to query our own decisions amongst ourselves (again you should be privy to those conversations).
You should also have full access to the moderation logs which show clearly all major interactions with that regards (apart from when it bugs out).
I understand you or your teams may not have the forum experience some of us have which in some cases at least dates back to pre-internet BBS days.
They should at the very least get to grips with the reports moderators deal with by following up the posts and the actions taken
If we say its legit then it will be up to you guys to show us where we made a mistake and for us to learn from that and not the other way around !
Then there are all the other NON LOGGED moderator interactions where we may simply post something so users know a moderator has an eye on a certain post.
Oh and lets just cover SPAM itself for a moment.
Did you know a lot of it never even gets reported ? Well that would be because the spammers are not really the brightest bulb in the room.
They often spam a post that a moderator has been involved in. That means we go look at it and hey presto big red button and zero reports.
Then there are those where your Spidey sensors tingle before a report even if you were not involved in a post, often spotted as a “NECRO” post or a name that cries out spam.
Yep there are no reports for them either.
Then there are the PM reports from people you deal with on a regular basis “Hey can you take a look at this post it looks odd”. You guessed it no reports for those either.
Or where we may simply do a minor edit on a person’s post without further action.
Or where we decide that no further action on a report is needed and simply close it.
There are also times we need to open multiple tabs of a single users posts from their profile to check things (more so for cross posting or relevant behaviour issues)
Other occasions may require a post to first be SPLIT from its parent topic, and then MOVED to a new section before being MERGED with a similar post by the same user.
And don’t forget the forum needs that to be done in a specific manner or it will cast the random back to main forum page spell on you. leaving you with no idea WTH just happened.
Then there is the thought that crosses a moderators mind (Don’t ask its odd in there My witchy therapist says) What if the user also did multiple infractions or whatever at the same time ?
So off you go and check more of their posts that were not yet reported and as if by some telepathetic spell or your crystal ball you see laid out before you yet more things to do.
Yes you probably guessed they get dealt with and there are zero reports involved.
And while we are on dark arts lets talk about an IP address. They are exceptionally useful to moderators. Sort of like POKEMON you catch one you gotta catch em all.
Often worth a look to see how many other names may be called up in that IP.
Chances are that if there is more than one user name there may be another spam account that may have been missed in the past.
Certainly don’t block that IP as it may only be part of a larger network with innocent users but it can often be a clue to other things.
Some occasions require delicate PM’s to offenders to avoid official sanctions.
Yes we can tread on eggshells and even do the Flamenco on them if we need (omelettes anyone ?)
Then we have our own needs or areas we like to take a little more interest in.
Moderation is not simply point and click, we are part psychologist, part peacekeeper, part guru, part relationship counsellor, part clown, part customer relations, part detective, part masochistic (only explanation for it), and many other things.
There is so much more to the title and duties than most people are aware of and I have only touched on the major points here.
Every post or action including all your own are often subject to your own extra scrutiny.
Are we done yet ?
Oh hell NO !
We do much more than just moderate we also act as a dating agency hooking up members with other members where interests may cross paths or another member may have the experience to answer an OP’s Q with a larger degree of skill.
This may go as far as generating sales leads for both members and Arduino alike. Reason enough alone for Arduino teams to keep an eye on the forums where odd but stray questions about such things crop up.
We hold a fine line between customer support and the thousands of users per day passing through the forum.
Oh and did I mention we do it all for fun and free usually being in the forum often more than 5 hrs a day often 7 days a week ? ( yea masochistic is the only word for it.)
Where do we release all the feelings built up after a session ?
Well we often have other things we do to take us back to a peaceful realm but on occasion we let loose in the “BAR SPORT” section a little.
Some aspects of moderator duties are an acquired art / skill and some think its witchcraft and that all moderators should be banished to some nether region.
We have a secret location
As a gentle reminder to you all that moderators are also humans too even if we have to hold ourselves above many things.
So PLEASE if you undo something we did let us know who, what, why, where, so we can learn too !
Visit the forum and all its sections. Involve yourself where you can even as an employee.
See and learn what type of people are in there. Can you assess a person’s character, level of English, technical level from a few posts and respond back at a level that suits them ?
Oh and did I mention the FORUM SOFTWARE is cursed and has a mind of its own and often tries to thwart anyone and everyone from noobs to senior posters and even moderators with quite random spells and incantations.
The most famous of these is to whisk you off to the main page where there may be yet another report…Hmmm which do you take first or do you decide to multiple tab and risk everything ?
Next week we will discuss potions and lotions to counter headaches, cankers, ailments, broken bones, warts or whatever else may ail you.
Remember snake oil needs dragons blood and fairies spit to be effective otherwise it’s just a extreme laxative so don’t drink and fart !