Simple Machines Community Forum

General Community => Site Comments, Issues and Concerns => Topic started by: Arantor on August 23, 2019, 08:59:20 AM

Title: Saving moderator time
Post by: Arantor on August 23, 2019, 08:59:20 AM
I keep seeing the same things going on and I think there’s a couple of things you can do.

1. If “don’t resurrect old threads” is a concern in the support boards, use the admin tools to lock the old topics, that’s what it’s there for.

2. I think it might be time to make the 1.1 board read only, and move it below the 2.0 and 2.1 boards as a historical archive (in time, but not yet, move it to the archived area)
Title: Re: Saving moderator time
Post by: d3vcho(); on August 23, 2019, 09:29:18 AM
1. Not all old topics should be closed.
2. Makes sense, I will pass that to the team.

Thank you for your thoughts :)
Title: Re: Saving moderator time
Post by: Aleksi "Lex" Kilpinen on August 23, 2019, 09:29:21 AM
1. If “don’t resurrect old threads” is a concern in the support boards, use the admin tools to lock the old topics, that’s what it’s there for.
Personally, I would not like to see this happen. We do want to allow people to return to their own old topics if they need to.

2. I think it might be time to make the 1.1 board read only, and move it below the 2.0 and 2.1 boards as a historical archive (in time, but not yet, move it to the archived area)
My opinion: Not before 2.1 is final.
Title: Re: Saving moderator time
Post by: Arantor on August 23, 2019, 09:48:09 AM
Then can someone please tell Irisado to not just unilaterally respond to every resurrected topic with a curt message and a lock please?

As for the 1.1 board closure, 1.1 has already been formally announced as EOL and 2.0 users keep putting topics in there.
Title: Re: Saving moderator time
Post by: Illori on August 23, 2019, 09:50:22 AM
Then can someone please tell Irisado to not just unilaterally respond to every resurrected topic with a curt message and a lock please?

we are dealing with this internally.
Title: Re: Saving moderator time
Post by: SpacePhoenix on August 23, 2019, 04:32:28 PM
I don't what options the mods of this forum have open to them (no idea what mods are installed and what tweaks have been made) but if the option exists to auto-close a thread that's not had a reply in x days, why not activate such an option?
Title: Re: Saving moderator time
Post by: Arantor on August 23, 2019, 04:39:38 PM
The options that are available inside the default software all exist here - and since this is a recurring matter, why not just save everyone's time to auto close the old topics?
Title: Re: Saving moderator time
Post by: Aleksi "Lex" Kilpinen on August 24, 2019, 01:39:36 AM
Because especially for support topics, that is not something we want to do.
Title: Re: Saving moderator time
Post by: Arantor on August 24, 2019, 04:08:00 AM
Even when it’s a several year old thread that almost certainly has no actual relevance?
Title: Re: Saving moderator time
Post by: Aleksi "Lex" Kilpinen on August 24, 2019, 04:12:53 AM
Well, that would have to be discussed with the team - but personally, I don't see a real need for it.
Title: Re: Saving moderator time
Post by: Arantor on August 24, 2019, 04:14:35 AM
Unfortunately it has been an ongoing saga with certain members of the team to respond to every thread like that with a snotty message and a lock. So I figured you could save that time by just locking all the old topics.

Especially for a system declared EOL more than a year ago.
Title: Re: Saving moderator time
Post by: d3vcho(); on August 24, 2019, 06:14:26 AM
We appreciate your thoughts, but even though SMF 1.1.x has been declared EOL, we need to leave the board open for future members who come with upgrade issues and/or asking for advice when 2.1 reaches final.
Title: Re: Saving moderator time
Post by: Arantor on August 24, 2019, 06:18:10 AM
Well, there used to be a board for that, the Upgrade and Install Help board, but that was archived some time ago, but in any case someone upgrading from 1.1 to 2.0 needs different help to someone upgrading from 1.1 to 2.1 and the specific boards really are the best place for that.

It's been 13 years since 1.1 came out, 1.5 years since 1.1 was declared EOL... and the vast majority of holdouts already had to go through the journey when hosts forced PHP 5.5 on them, the remainder are continuing to survive on unofficial patches that they didn't get here.
Title: Re: Saving moderator time
Post by: d3vcho(); on August 24, 2019, 06:24:22 AM
That board got archived because it got redundant. If you're upgrading from 1.1 to 2.0, you post in the 1.1.x Support Board. If you're upgrading from 1.1 to 2.1, you post in the 1.1.x Support Board. Even though they're different, the base is the same and there's no need for another board to deal with that. I want to remind that, even if you think that board was useful, when it was still there, we had to move a lot of topics from/to that board because users didn't post in the right places.

Less boards, more simplicity and easier for user seeking for support.
Title: Re: Saving moderator time
Post by: lurkalot on August 24, 2019, 06:46:55 AM
That board got archived because it got redundant. If you're upgrading from 1.1 to 2.0, you post in the 1.1.x Support Board. If you're upgrading from 1.1 to 2.1, you post in the 1.1.x Support Board. Even though they're different, the base is the same and there's no need for another board to deal with that. I want to remind that, even if you think that board was useful, when it was still there, we had to move a lot of topics from/to that board because users didn't post in the right places.

Less boards, more simplicity and easier for user seeking for support.

Think that EOL stuff should be read only.  And to be fair, the first thing I'd be inclined to do when upgrading to 2.0 or 2.1 from any version is ask in the 2.0 or 2.1 boards. It needs to move on tbh.
Title: Re: Saving moderator time
Post by: Arantor on August 24, 2019, 06:59:28 AM
Less boards is precisely what I'm advocating for.

Let's take a quick look at the 1.1 board for an example of what I mean. Out of the first page, 25 items, that takes us back 4 months. Clearly this is not a hugely in demand board.

Of those 25 topics:
4 are stickies, 2 of which date back to 1.1's original release era, but clearly these aren't going anywhere.
4 topics moved only this week to the 2.0 board
2 topics resurrected from years ago and locked
2 entries that don't specify a version and could legitimately be either 1.1 or 2.0
2 entries that are upgrade topics
3 entries from a user who won't upgrade at this point
2 from a user who was going to be upgrading but had a couple of questions, potentially, pending the upgrade

Doesn't exactly sound like the board is thriving - and if you consider it, more posts *should not be in that board* than the ones that were posted in that board over the same timeframe. That's a pretty good indicator that it's time to retire it.

Shockingly if you give people fewer boards to post in, they will be more likely to get it right.
Title: Re: Saving moderator time
Post by: Looking on August 24, 2019, 11:15:00 AM
Just curious... do moderators on SMF have a list of established rules to follow or is it largely based on personal preference / judgement?

I'm asking because in the past I have seen one moderator pass over something with no problems while another will push hard on it.
Title: Re: Saving moderator time
Post by: Aleksi "Lex" Kilpinen on August 24, 2019, 11:27:28 AM
We do have some of what you might call moral guidelines, and often individual cases are discussed in team before acting, or after someone did. It is near impossible to create an all inclusive set of rules for a forum such as we have here, since there are differences between situations and even between boards within the forum. That's about as far as I am willing to discuss this in public.
Title: Re: Saving moderator time
Post by: Sir Osis of Liver on August 24, 2019, 04:53:30 PM
This subject was discussed frequently while I was on team, it's not something that's been ignored.  As Lex points out, it's really not practical to have strict moderation guidelines, there must always be room for judgement.  I do think it's good to have some flexibility in the overall approach.  In the past, when the forum was a lot more active, stricter moderation was necessary or things got sloppy very quickly.  At current activity levels, a more informal approach would seem to be appropriate   Support has always been a strong point for SMF, that's why I started using it, and visitors seeking help should not be put off by overly strict moderation.
Title: Re: Saving moderator time
Post by: Arantor on August 24, 2019, 06:04:46 PM
That's kind of my point - if you're going to have strict moderation, actually save everyone the effort of responding to tell people 'you posted in the wrong place' by not letting people post in the wrong place in the first place.
Title: Re: Saving moderator time
Post by: Sir Osis of Liver on August 24, 2019, 06:21:19 PM
I'm inclined to agree.  If you let people do things, they will.  If you're not going to allow them to resurrect old topics, then the topics should be locked.  The poster can reference an old topic with a link, assuming, of course, that they know how.
Title: Re: Saving moderator time
Post by: Looking on August 24, 2019, 08:57:16 PM
Quote from: Aleksi "Lex" Kilpinen
It is near impossible to create an all inclusive set of rules for a forum
I agree. In my personal experience making more all inclusive rules and leaving judgement calls to very rare and small windows is better otherwise members can see a discrepancy between moderators which may lead them to think they are being targeted by the individual rather than the rule or policy.

Quote from: Sir Osis of Liver
Support has always been a strong point for SMF, that's why I started using it
Likewise, one of the key interests I have here.

Quote from: Arnator
...by not letting people post in the wrong place in the first place.
This is how I approach all my error coding. Over the years I've seen that people will look more kindly on a default message telling you "no, you can't do that" than my moderators or myself having to run and point it out after the fact and say so.
Title: Re: Saving moderator time
Post by: SpacePhoenix on August 25, 2019, 10:23:26 AM
What about creating a sub-board in "2.0 Support" called "Upgrading to 2.0 from 1.1" which would have all the threads from people having problems with upgrading. The whole of the "1.1 Support" board could then be closed and archived
Title: Re: Saving moderator time
Post by: Illori on August 25, 2019, 11:43:12 AM
we did not have people posting to the old installing and upgrading board, that is why it got archived. a new board i dont see solving the problem.
Title: Re: Saving moderator time
Post by: zappaDPJ on August 26, 2019, 01:21:04 AM
Something that sets forums apart from other social platforms is content which doesn't become obsolete and lost within a short period of time. Support forums provide a searchable knowledge base which is potentially of tremendous value to anyone using the supported product. If resurrecting old threads is a problem to someone then that someone really doesn't understand forums in my mind.
Title: Re: Saving moderator time
Post by: Arantor on August 26, 2019, 01:33:23 AM
Resurrecting old threads in a support forum is frequently counterproductive though, since what tends to happen is that you end up with people getting a similar error message from a completely different cause getting confused.
Title: Re: Saving moderator time
Post by: Sir Osis of Liver on August 26, 2019, 12:38:54 PM
Locked topics still remain as part of the knowledge base.
Title: Re: Saving moderator time
Post by: Deaks on September 01, 2019, 09:55:19 PM
TBH their are a couple of boards that should be archived due to inactivity, one board has not had any conversation (besides a new sticky) since 2016, another since 2017 and finally 8 January 2018 (happy to send a list of these boards to a team member)
Title: Re: Saving moderator time
Post by: zappaDPJ on September 04, 2019, 09:19:58 PM
Resurrecting old threads in a support forum is frequently counterproductive though, since what tends to happen is that you end up with people getting a similar error message from a completely different cause getting confused.

Locked topics still remain as part of the knowledge base.

Both valid points but in our case they are somewhat negated by members contributing to support requests regardless of whether the thread is entirely relevant to the latest post. In my mind a general locked thread policy suggests a ticketing system might be preferable but each to there own :)
Title: Re: Saving moderator time
Post by: Arantor on September 05, 2019, 02:31:45 AM
There is a ticketing system here but only for charter members.
Title: Re: Saving moderator time
Post by: Kindred on September 05, 2019, 08:21:36 AM
And a ticketing system is private...   it missed the point of an open support forum where others can look for existing answers.