Forums Stop Locking Threads for "Arguments"

Discussion in 'Suggestions' started by Emviar, Oct 16, 2018.

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  1. Emviar

    Emviar Mythic Partier VIP

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    The title basically sums it up.

    I'm tired of seeing threads locked because of the excuse "arguments are starting." Sometimes we have to discuss sensitive topics, such as should suicidal messages, jokes or not, be filtered out of the chat window. But that doesn't mean we should just be forced to stop talking about it because arguments are starting.

    I think the staff here have an incorrect understanding of the meaning of the word "argument." Merriam-Webster defines it as "a coherent series of reasons, statements, or facts intended to support or establish a point of view." This does not mean, however, that an argument is generally filled with insults, hostility, and negativity.

    Arguments are necessary for progress to be made. We can't take action if everyone disagrees on what action to take. However, we can come to an agreement if we have an argument about the issue. A pseudo argument occurs when individuals are so loyal to their side that they completely refuse to change their minds or find common ground with the other side, even when the evidence is overwhelming. That's not ideal, but it's not what I've seen going on around here. I've seen a lot of genuine arguments that are being cut off by staff members.

    I understand the idea behind trying to end a possible heated argument before it escalates, but there are a lot of productive discussions that we miss out on when that happens. I think it makes more sense to wait and deal with rule-breaking if it appears in the thread.

    To summarize, I'm suggesting that staff stop locking threads just because arguments are starting (and keep in mind, in many of these cases, forum rules aren't being broken) and instead watch for rule-breaking (and act accordingly if this occurs), and if the discussion goes off-topic, staff should redirect the discussion to the original topic of the thread.

    I'd really appreciate any feedback, and if you're in support of this suggestion, please give it a "should implement" rating so that it's easier for the development team to weigh the community's opinions on this matter.
     
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2018
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  2. KinqOfTheClouds

    KinqOfTheClouds Mythic Partier Elite+

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    I don't think the staff do actually. They lock the threads went they get off topic and there is no way for them to recover the conversation. No one ever said anything about insults
     
  3. Emviar

    Emviar Mythic Partier VIP

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    Example A: https://mcpz.net/threads/a-little-note-please-read.50021/page-2
    This was an important discussion about whether or not suicidal messages should be filtered out of the public chat on the server. There weren't really any rules being broken here. The thread was locked for the specific (and only) reason that "arguments are starting." Remember, though, that arguments, in essence, aren't hostile. They're an exchange of points and facts to support or challenge a point of view. This argument wasn't getting out of hand - it was cut off too soon. I suggest that, instead, staff should have watched the thread to make sure rules weren't being broken and that the discussion stayed on-topic - then, if rules are being broken or the discussion is getting off-topic, staff can act accordingly (which would involve warning the rule-breaker and/or steering the conversation back on topic, not locking the thread immediately.)

    Example B: https://mcpz.net/threads/banning-of-mental-asylums-mental-hospital-rps.48843/
    This was also an important discussion regarding whether or not players should be allowed to make roleplays that involve mental health hospitals and/or asylums. A staff member simply locked the thread because "it is beginning to go off-topic and is leading to arguments." The staff member didn't say "hostile arguments have been going on, rules have been broken, and the conversation is far off-topic from the original post." Again, I'm suggesting the staff member refrain from locking that important discussion so hastily, and instead watch for potential rule-breaking or far-off-topic posts.

    Example C: https://mcpz.net/threads/calm-down-punishments.47979/
    This one might be a little controversial because it went on for so long, but I still say this one was cut off hastily. The original suggestion got 25 "should implement" ratings and only 3 "don't implement" ratings. We were having, in my opinion, a very important discussion where, as far as I know, no hostility or insults were taking place. We were trying to make our case to the staff members, and the one who locked it wasn't going to take it any longer. They locked the thread because "we're going in circles and this suggestion is getting nowhere." They didn't say the thread was now off-topic. Rules didn't seem to be broken. Other staff members were actually in support of the suggestion, but this one was clearly tired of this discussion and decided to arbitrarily shut it down early.

    I could probably find more of these, but these three were the ones that came to mind first.
     
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  4. KinqOfTheClouds

    KinqOfTheClouds Mythic Partier Elite+

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    The rules being broken is the fact that it is an argument. And also, you are suggesting about arguments, not hostile comments so stop using "no hostile comments were made" as a point.
     
  5. squid legend

    squid legend Champion Partier Elite+

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    Example B was actually requested I think, so.
    but yes i agree
     
  6. Spirits

    Spirits Heroic Partier Elite+

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    I think people aren't getting the message you're intending, Emviar. I'm thinking you should use the word "debate" rather than "arguement." It just seems more civil in my opinion. As for the topic itself, staff members lock for arguments because the thread goes off topic. And when it does, it usually goes onto a more topic, trying to insult others.
     
  7. KinqOfTheClouds

    KinqOfTheClouds Mythic Partier Elite+

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    Staff are actually just following instructions, to be fair to them. You shouldn't be "calling the staff out" and saying they
     
  8. Pqndar

    Pqndar Heroic Partier Elite+

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    I agree %100 it’s just the mini mod members who disagree.
     
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  9. KinqOfTheClouds

    KinqOfTheClouds Mythic Partier Elite+

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    And that is the kind of attitude that will get a thread locked
     
  10. Emviar

    Emviar Mythic Partier VIP

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    I Ctrl+F searched for "argument" in the PartyZone rules and there's nothing there. :-]
    Example A was the one that was requested, I think, however it wasn't requested by the original poster. It was requested by someone else, and no rules were being broken, so the thread shouldn't have been locked.
    But, see, that's the problem right there. That's why I defined the word argument. The definition of debate comes in many forms, but most of them mention that the discussion happens in a formal manner - a minecraft forum isn't really all that formal, so I don't think debate applies here.
    And it doesn't always go off-topic. In the examples I posted, the "side-discussions" (if you want to call them that) were still relevant to the overall topic and shouldn't have been considered off-topic posts. However, in example B, some messages (like asking others to let the thread die, and others [again, not the original poster] asking for the thread to be locked) could be considered off-topic, but they weren't necessary messages and could have been deleted by staff members, and then the discussion could continue.
    Actually, the rules don't say anything about locking threads because "[nonhostile] arguments are starting." It says don't intentionally flame, don't post hate speech, don't post racial slurs, don't curse... and that's about it. None of the examples that I stated are consistently guilty of these things.
    I'm not calling them out. I'm suggesting a policy change. "Calling the staff out" would be saying "Wow, look at what @Staff_Member did on this thread! This sucks and they're a horrible person!" and I didn't do that. I didn't shame them for what they did. I didn't even call them by name.
    But it's true. Why would I ignore the truth if it'll help our server out? I'm not trying to be rude. I'm trying to improve the server -- "argument" in essence doesn't mean insulting each other over nothing.
    In Example B, users who weren't the original poster or staff members were asking for the thread to be locked. Again, no rules were being broken and the discussion was still on-topic until these messages popped up. So, yeah, you're right.
    See? @Pqndar didn't break any rules. He expressed his opinion and made a point. The thread doesn't have to be locked just because you happen to disagree with him. This is the exact thing I'm trying to prevent. And even if he was breaking rules in his message (such as cursing, spamming, advertising, hate speech, etc.), staff could just warn him and edit/remove the message instead of bringing the entire discussion to a screeching halt.

    Please, everyone, don't misunderstand me. I'm not trying to be hateful here. I'm trying to have a genuine discussion about a recurring problem that's getting on my nerves. Remember that whole discussion a while back about how people are leaving because of rule changes, and PZ can't keep its numbers up? Yeah, what kind of community does it make us if we silence conversations that aren't getting out of hand?
     
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2018
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  11. -Ella

    -Ella Ultimate Partier Elite+

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    This is cool!
     
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  12. Wolfy

    Wolfy Heroic Partier Elite+

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    I agree with this completely, if an argument starts on a story thread for example and the thread is locked the owner of the thread for the story will be annoyed.
     
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  13. Sneepsnoop_

    Sneepsnoop_ Helper Staff Member Helper Elite

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    They had no reason to say that 'Only the mini-mods,' There was no reason to say anything that relates to that. We're stating what we think about this idea, which we may possibly not understand. Instead they should've expressed an actual point and given us a reason to AGREE with the suggest. However, I do like this idea and would say +1. I would like to point out, they shouldn't be locked for civil debates, but once it gets off topic and is no longer about the suggestion, it should just be locked and left alone. We of course also have the permission to message the staff member that locked the thread, and possible get it unlocked, I believe. ( I've been told these things, correct me if I'm wrong.) If it's civil. people are just giving opinions, then it shouldn't be locked. https://mcpz.net/threads/a-little-note-please-read.50021/page-2 When I was reading this thread, I believe it was all civil and made sense, however it's a sensitive subject and they just wanted to completely avoid anything that could turn out bad. It was also probably going to turn into some victim thing, where someone is just going to keep pulling the victim card and would waste the suggestion itself.
     
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  14. yani

    yani Legendary Partier Elite

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    I've been in these certain situations where staff members unnecessarily locked the thread due to this reason. I'm going to agree with this suggestion because:

    • The examples you've provided have been looked at by myself personally, and no where in any of those examples's conversations portray a negatively influenced or inappropriate conversation that could lead to an argument. There was, however, opinions on certain types of suggestions that were differentiating between both opposing sides that had different views on the situation.
    ■ An example of this would be Example A, users were only discussing if it was appropriate to state the thoughts of suicide in global chat, yet the thread was locked before a severe argument even erupted. In this example users were only stating their different opinions on how they see the situation.
    • If there is going to be a 'Suggestions' section on the forums, there needs to be an understanding that there will be people who have different point of views and opinions than others. These opinions should not be defined as hostile and negative, but more of a diverse topic.

    Like you've also stated, they could just remove the posts or edit them to make them sound "friendlier" if they felt it was necessary.
    Example B had a very slight negative tone but I believe that it was being handled maturely and it was being talked about maturely due to the fact that it's a mature theme.

    In conclusion, I believe this should be changed and looked into further on.
     
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  15. logcn ♡

    logcn ♡ Heroic Partier Elite+

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    Yes +1
     
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  16. Pqndar

    Pqndar Heroic Partier Elite+

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    You have no clue what PZ members I have dealt with.
     
  17. KinqOfTheClouds

    KinqOfTheClouds Mythic Partier Elite+

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    I mean, I never said they did. I just said that was the kind of attitude that would cause the staff members to lock the thread.

    Can you stop putting words in my mouth? I never said I want this thread locked and I never said that I want it locked because I disagree.

    Yes, that's a good idea. Maybe suggest that instead of attacking me and saying stuff I never said?
     
  18. yani

    yani Legendary Partier Elite

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    Now this is an example of a negative conversation. This sort of thing could lead to a potential flame war, so just a friendly reminder to respect everyone’s opinions and ideas from this point on.

    Edit: (Instead of locking the thread, this sort of message to remind everyone to be respectful is a better alternative than closing the discussion in whole.)
     
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2018
  19. Tyler

    Tyler Mythic Partier

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    if the staff are truly offended by somebody arguing, they should just take down the posts that are arguing so that the THREAD doesn't have to be locked. imagine having your thread locked because of an argument you're not even involved in...
     
  20. Emviar

    Emviar Mythic Partier VIP

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    That's along the lines of what I'm saying. The entire discussion shouldn't be closed off just because a couple of people are having an argument. Again, if there's any rulebreaking going on, staff should just act accordingly with that person/people and let the discussion continue. If the entire discussion and everyone involved is making the conversation go WAY out of hand, then yes, it could be locked, but not before a decent effort has been made to return the conversation to an on-topic setting.
     
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