Go to the NEW FORUM
I was a bit surprised by Dan M.'s departure from the forum because Henrik locked out the 2000's countdown because of NJ's offensive contribution.
I wonder whether further discussion of this controversy would be helpful so that we can avoid such turmoil in the future.
I think NJ as provocateur may be pleased with the present situation. I also find that our dearest NJ is a wonderfully interesting person and do not want to either encourage him to keep on offending or discourage him from providing his many wonderfully entertaining quips.
My suggestion is that we do not over-react to NJ's provocations in an ad hoc manner, but perhaps set up some guidelines regarding the deletion of images judged to be far too offensive. However, such a solution could reasonably be viewed as censorship by folks such as Dan M. - so I am hoping that others that participate in the forum can help develop a more elegant systematic solution to situations similar to the one created by NJ. Perhaps once such an elegant solution is properly articulated, we can coax Dan M. to re-engage.
I'm all for upgrading the forum altogether to one with true membership and logins in addition to moderators. There are a few reasons why I think this could be beneficial:
1. Greater security. I'm far from versed in internet security, but I know that this forum could be hacked and abused more easily than others. Someone more knowledgeable about this subject may want to post more about this.
2. Eliminate spam! Having to type a code to post a message has not deterred spamming at all. It is rather easy to simply paste in a comment and type the code. A membership system would not completely deter it, but if there was, say, a 5-day waiting period before a member could post in the forums, that might work. For those of us who are regular posters of the forum, perhaps we could streamline this process, with Henrik or someone else authorizing immediate posting privileges, etc.
3. No impersonators! It's happened to me once and I know it's happened to a few others - someone posts a message under someone else's username. This is entirely confusing and while I don't think anything too harmful has happened, it is possible that such abuse could end up being harmful at some stage.
4. More user-friendly features. Private messages, avatars, post history, an "about me" section, etc. may encourage individuality and make this forum seem more up-to-date and the posters not so anonymous. I know at least one person who I have shown the site who does not visit because the forum is so primitive. While this may not seem important, we may be missing out on valuable contributions from people simply because the forum looks old.
5. The ability to edit posts longer than an hour. This also may not seem to be a big deal, but if someone is posting a new thread with links for a poll or game and there is a mistake, that mistake better be caught within an hour of the original post.
6. Moderation ability. Censorship and moderation is a tricky subject, but there is clearly a need for at least some moderation. If somebody decided to post another's private information, for example, clearly such posts should be deleted without much controversy. There are gray areas, too, such as the picture in the thread in question. As it stands, this picture can not be deleted without also deleting the following posts that came as replies, which makes moderation more costly than simply stirring this debate. An upgraded forum should not have this issue.
Your articulation is marvelous and I presently agree with each point you made.
Not sure where this thread will go, but let's see what others have to say.
I think Henrik has stated that he is open to upgrading this forum to one with more functionality, but the problem would be that all the lists (especially the ones that are linked to on the main website) that were posted on these boards over the years would be lost.
Before Bravenet updated these boards I found a possibility to update posts forever and delete spam posts, which made things quite a bit better. When this was fixed, we discussed solutions to the problem of losing the posts, but the discussions have always sort of ended in silence.
I believe the options are:
1. Continue on Bravenet
2. Update to a new forum package, I would suggest phpBB but that's only because I have worked quite a bit with that particular software, while keeping this forum for its archives.
3. Update to a new forum package and move all the important posts manually to the new forum--unfortunately Bravenet offers no export/import tools, so we'll have to do this by hand.
I think the second solution is probably the best, because that way we can also keep an archive to all of our year/decade/all-time polls, but I recall Henrik saying there are some problems with this. I've forgotten what though.
Are the lists that we are referring to that would be lost simply the forum polls we have had? Or would we lose all of the critics lists as well?
Henrik, I understand that you 're interested in critics lists inly and you've always been great at it.
But we could help in moderating and exporting.
I would definitely be up for helping you out with moderating this forum (or even help set it up, if you need any help there). I was a moderator on d2jsp.org (one of the largest forums in the world) for many years but gave up moderating because it got so ridiculously big and bureaucratic, so I have some experience (I hope that doesn't sound too pompous).
Also, I think the most important thing to transfer are the critic lists and perhaps some of the more important polls we've held and the critics lists are not a huge project as they can simply be copy/pasted onto the new forum.
The large majority of the work, as I see it, will be transferring our polls to the new forum, which will require more work because layout and links are also important. However, the amount of polls is not so large that it will be impossible if we unite forces. BBcode is used on almost all forums, meaning we can just quote our posts here and copy them onto the new forum and the layout should look almost identical.
Added bonus to using phpBB is that it's free, although it would result in more traffic as it will need to be hosted directly on acclaimedmusic.net. Of course you do save the costs you currently pay Bravenet.
Henry, thanks for starting this thread. I'm glad we're having this conversation even now when Dan is back.
If password would be required in a new forum I hope this would just be for write access. Wouldn't we lose a lot of visitors otherwise? There has always been easy access to both the main AM page and the forum and I want it to stay that way.
I'd definitely back you too, Stephan. Thanks for the offer!
I'm not sure if a new forum can be run on acclaimedmusic.net though. Again, Bravenet is the website host ... (premium ftp hosting) and as I said I'm no expert on these things so it's probably best if you have a look at http://www.bravehost.com/matrix.php and see if they allow the things you want to do.
Yes, phpBB allows you to set what registered and unregistered users can do. Registration is a one-time deal, after which you can stay logged in. You can simply give unregistered users the rights to view all the posts but not reply to them.
Edit: Yeah, with the premium package it's definitely possible to install these boards (at least in the technical aspect). I can't say how much traffic these boards would generate in comparison to the current ones (I assume a little more) but it seems irrelevant since you have unlimited bandwidth.
I personally don't want to post on a forum where you have no choice but to look at disgusting images to read if they are posted.
Every other internet forum in the world does not allow direct digustingness or personal attacks against other users. This is not censorship, it's community standards of respectful discourse.
I do not even want to read a thread if I have no way to avoid seeing pictures of babies with empty eye sockets when I do so. That would cause me to leave the forum.
Let's also make a distinction here between government imposed censorship and what we're talking about here. This is Henrik's private club here, and there's a difference between the government stepping in and saying "You must censor this" and Henrik saying "This is not the kind of atmosphere I want for my forum, so I'm setting standards."
OK to keep this going, I'm happy to volunteer some time to transcribe polls to a new forum, if Henrik is happy for an upgrade, of course.
I'm willing to help too for exporting and moderating if need be
I've always wanted to help creating a board/site and it will help me in my job search
Most of the 'creating' (i.e. uploading) will have to be done by Henrik. He can then set (if necessary) extra admins (who can create new forums, upgrade users, ban users and generally fuck things up badly) and those can in turn set users to moderators (who can close topics, suspend users). You can even set up different types of moderators (e.g. super moderators who can edit/delete other people's posts and regular moderators who can only close topics). There's also the possibility to set up some special user group with forum regulars who have extra posting options (e.g. edit forever).
@Henrik: The actual installation process is pretty straightforward in my experience, but if you decide to go through with this I can help you out if you get stuck if we do this somewhere after January 31st (my last exam).
This sounds very promising. Just tell me what I need to do.
But first good luck with your exam!
I'm definitely not an expert in these things, but if I can help in any way, I'd be happy to contribute. Good initiative.
In regard to the (latest) nj post, I'm pretty sure by now we all know (s)he is a troll, and we should expect this stuff. If we don't react, (s)he'll stop doing it.
Edit: Bah, it won't yet me embed a Youtube video.
Anyway, as the Kids In The Hall sketch I tried to link to expressed, I don't think you're right, Listy. I've never seen the Butters Stotch approach to handling bullies succeed in any context.
Ah, the enigma that is Netjade! Everytime I think I have you figured out you confuse me even more... I think everybody got a little too upset over a picture that isn't the worst thing I've ever seen on a forum, but it would be nice to see an updated forum with logins and everything. It won't stop spam.... honestly, this board is probably the least spammed forum that I frequent and all of the other ones require logins. But, at least you'd have the ability to remove posts and ban users easily enough for spam.
The only thing that I can see happening with an updated forum is that every post will become a poll or builder game. I think that of all the music forums I have gone to, AM has the best discussion and it's the reason it's my home. RYM can have good discussion and it's easier to use now that games are in a different section, but I've always felt that the people here are much more interesting to talk to and I like the small community where you know each other's tastes. Though, I'd never be opposed to a change because it would make the community larger mostly because the core users are already the foundation so at this point more users would only be for the better I'd think.
I don't think changing to a different type of forum will drastically increase the amount of regular posters, if at all, but if it does happen we can always create extra forum sections for those games. However, I don't think the people that frequent these boards are too interested in the simple polls and builder games; we like our polls long and complicated.
We could even create a section just for regular posters, but I've seen that lead to troublesome situations before in terms of defining who's a regular and whatnot, so I'm not sure if it would work.
Anyway, I'm not too worried.
NJ is not a troll and never has been.
right Moonbeam (about nj)
I don't want the new forum train to lose steam!
I don't think we should have a forum for only regular members. That kind of cliquishness is unappealing. Just an updated forum with login/password, member page, avatar and private message capacity would be great!
Don't worry, if Henrik is still in agreement I fully intend to get this going the 1st of February. Henrik, do you have IRC/Skype/MSN/Google Talk/some other chat program through which we can communicate a little more directly? You should still have my email address, I use it for both Skype and MSN.
I'm here for anything. Loving the ideias and would like to volunteer as a helper to move things if it's needed - if it's more complicated than it sounds (ahem "copy and paste" somewhere else) then teach me! haha
And nj has a heart. A big one. There's more than a troller there and our Facebooks will always be there as evidence.