Author Topic: Of boards, topics and moderation  (Read 10661 times)

Mike Briggs

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Of boards, topics and moderation
« on: August 06, 2007, 07:54:55 am »
Hey guys:
Well, we've been up a couple of weeks, and there's over 1900 posts.  I've recruited a couple of moderators to help keep everything running smoothly (thanks guys!).  This naturally raises the question of how moderators get chosen.

The first couple of moderators were chosen because I was completely overwhelmed with the number of folks using the boards, and I needed someone who could keep topics on-topic, splitting or joining threads as needed, and dealing with a crazy old man like me.  I picked Cole and Grey Drakkon because they were submitting cogent, articulate posts, and they were spending a lot of time here anyway.  The bottom line is that I don't have a lot of time for these forums, but they've  proven to be more interesting, and more than active than I'd ever imagined. ;D

I'm generally trying to have a single moderator per board -- it keeps the moderators from overwriting one another and starting turf-wars ;D  There are some boards (like "Mercy's World") which will benefit from multiple moderators. 

If you'd like to moderate a board, you can ask the current moderator if he/she would like help.  If they agree I'll be happy to add you.  If you have a great idea for a new board you'd like to moderate, write me a note (either here, or email to mike@hurog.com) and I'll be happy to talk with you.   

In the unlikely event th at you have a problem with a moderator abusing their powers, let me know what happened and I'll talk with the moderator in question.   :-\ 

Have fun!
Mike

Where's my super-suit?

Patti L.

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Re: Of boards, topics and moderation
« Reply #1 on: February 04, 2009, 04:40:30 pm »
Navigating forums (or is it fora, from latin?  Whatever   ::) ) can be tricky.  We've actually got ours fairly well organized.

One suggestion that I found on a thread recently is this:  you know the little "search" box that comes up on the top of the page, from "home" page through any group's pages of threads?  you can put a word in there, like google or whatever, and that's fine.  But if the instance you're looking for isn't in that breakdown (say you were looking for the "Rape?!?" thread in "Whatever"), it won't show in the results.

If the word or phrase you put in is common, ("werewolf" for example.) it's going to have a lot of hits, so it's good to take a minute and think about where it is most likely to be.  "Well, I want to read what people say about that walking stick from Iron Kissed."

Okay, go to the "Patricia Briggs" area, (maybe you won't find it there,) you go down to the more specific section below it, "Books", and maybe to the "Weres" breakdown, then try the search.  Chances are better that you'll find it like that.
« Last Edit: November 10, 2010, 06:12:05 pm by Patti L. »
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Patti L.

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Re: Of boards, topics and moderation
« Reply #2 on: February 04, 2009, 05:00:20 pm »
After the rules, navigation, and "staff" sections, the areas break down this way.

"Briggs Central" containing a center for compliments or information you think may be helpful to Our Hostess, the "For Patty" area, where she can read comments on her writing and our enjoyment of it.  Questions should be taken to the correct "Ask Patty" breakout area. 

Mike's Mutterings, where Our Host has his say, and offers us the chance buy merchandise to promote Our Hostess's works for ridiculously low prices, "The Silver Bullet Saga", where we collect all information on the casting or other manufacture of silver bullets, along with speculations on other silver weapons for use against werewolves.  Mr. Mike also sometimes posts "What's New" here, giving us a glimpse into what it takes to run their household.  His prose is more humorous than hers, and equally engaging to read.

"Books" is next; this is specifically about books by Patty Briggs, and it's broken down into an "odds and ends" section for the unclassifiable, the particular worlds, including an area to ask Patty about THAT world, and an "anthology/short story" area for the shorter works. The "Weres" section DOES contain information about the graphic novels, please look at the sub-boards.

"World building" or "Canon" is specifically about the 'physical' or 'characteristics of persons' in the Mercy Thompson/Anna & Charles world.  Our own Elle keeps the "ID Cards" up to date; post book title initials and page numbers with new information revealed about the characters or other subjects in the "Fact Finding" threads about the specific books/characters, she'll integrate them.

There is another breakdown with the ID cards for the people, Deities, and other entities and places of the other worlds Patty has created, these are linked to those worlds, "Sianam", "Raven Duology", "Hob's Bargain".

After that, Mr. & Mrs. Briggs graciously have a section for us all to discuss all other authors, with breakouts on that.  There is a master list at the beginning of each section, with the author's name set to link to their thread if you click on it.  Please check the master list before starting a new thread.  If you start a thread, please do so in the existing format, telling us a bit about the type of book, the setting, the characters.  Is it a "cozy mystery" writer?  Paranormal romance?  Steampunk?  Does the author write in several genres?

Then we've got an area to display & discuss art and music, movies, TV.

Next is the liveliest part, the "Forum Members" area.  You've seen the "Introduce yourself" section, right?  Read a bit and see if you want to post onto a general greeting thread or start your own, we're good with either, and you see some fun stuff in there.

"Patti's Place" is for virtual hanging out, as in the living room of a friend with some bucks.  We've got virtual food and drink at all times, and our virtual bartender-hunk, Sam and his assistant Samantha, a fireplace, couches, blankies, and a performers corner.  Once in a while Mr. Mike Briggs comes in and plays his guitar to accompany his singing, which is way cool. Barbecue, jousting, hot tub, archery range, and the martial arts studio are in the back, out past the kitchen & stasis equipped pantry.  Library around the edge of the fireplace, with cats to be had for lap warming & propping up of books.

"Chat" is for that - more specific subjects usually, like Pets, cooking, venting your spleen, birthday greetings, conventions, martial arts, "the Funny Pages" and "The Naughty Corner" - that one is most R rated, so mature audiences, please.  There are places for happy things and grumbles as well as other random stuff, including the actual "Random" thread. 

"Games and Trivia" is ongoing games of various sorts, mostly word associated.  We do not have, and do not intend to have, any role playing games based here.  We value our moderators too much to inflict that on them.

Next is a short but wonderful area for giveaways and contests! -- This is only visible to those who are not only registered members, but members who actively post.

After that is our little writing area, with some stories you can read, our writing challenges, and places you can ask questions or answer them if you've got some clues for us on the subject of writing. 

And, down at the very bottom is some fun trivia; the most recently signed up member, the number of members, who's online yea, that very second, and, if you click on the correct spots, more detail.
See?  Not so bad!
« Last Edit: October 11, 2011, 08:50:26 pm by Patti L. »
Sanity on loan. Call back next year.

Patti L.

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Re: Of boards, topics and moderation
« Reply #3 on: October 12, 2009, 02:18:15 pm »
More "How to" on getting what you want from Hurog:

To look at the next thread on a topic, it's the "Next/Previous" option on the lower RIGHT of the page - or upper right.  The pages of that thread, however, are on the LEFT.

The top of every page has the name of the board, "Hurog.com", followed by "Hello (board member/guest)

Following that are your two options for seeing new posts.

"Show unread posts since last visit."
  This is everything public that's been posted since your last (member) visit.

"Show new replies to your posts." -- this is where things you've posted on will show specifically.  It's short and sweet, but you don't necessarily see some really cool new topics if you only look here.  :)

Next is your total time logged in.  Since we do trim old threads fairly continuously, this is a far better indicator of your Hurog seniority than your actual post count.  Many of us log this on the "Member Milestones" thread fairly frequently.

The next part is totally coolThe news banner!
All kinds of good stuff gets announced here.  Signing dates & places for Our Hostess; giveaways, writing contest, updates on rules, changes in how things are arranged, who knows!  There are usually from three to six announcements rotating through on this, so when you refresh the page, or check a thread, or "unread posts" list, check this for anything you might need to be aware of.

Under that is a selection of tabs to help you find specific things; "home" brings you to the list of forums/sub-boards, "help" takes you to more detailed assistance than I'm offering here, "search" will help you find specific subjects being mentioned in different threads, "profile" is where you can look at what you're telling us about yourself, and make changes to it, and to how you see the board.

"My messages" is important; that's the "PM" or personal message system; you can talk with one or more specific people who are members without doing it on threads for the whole rest of the world to see.  If you get a message - or two, or five - a little number in brackets will show beside it [1] or [4], like that.  I suggest marking your profile to have your PMs automatically copy to your email account, that way if you get cool news like "You won something, but I have to get it in the mail by 2 days from now or pick a different winner", and you can't get to Hurog, you still find out.  bOuNcY
**UPDATE ON PMs:  Due to spam attacks,  :-' we've instituted another level of security.  New members, or those whose post counts have dropped, will have limited message capacity, ten messages for "Tool Wrangler" and twelve for "Grease Monkeys."  Once you make it to "Tinker" those limits disappear.  Please note, this is a total for both sent and received messages.  So if you're keeping copies of what you're sending, they add to the count.  You'll need to go through and prune those too.  If you want to keep track of what you've said, you might enable the option to copy your incoming messages to email, and blind cc to yourself on what you send out.  Then you can just go through and delete everything after you've read it.

The calendar mostly contains birthdays of members, but a few other events are linked to it, like signings by Our Hostess; please, don't just bung all your personal dates up there; everyone will see it, and it's both annoying for us and unsafe for you.

Members will let you find other members so you can look at their profiles or send PMs to them without fighting how to spell their names.

Logout does just that;  I don't actually use it!   :-[   bOuNcY

And there are the basics, I hope they help.

« Last Edit: June 03, 2011, 12:57:35 pm by Patti L. »
Sanity on loan. Call back next year.

Patti L.

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Re: Of boards, topics and moderation
« Reply #4 on: September 05, 2010, 08:19:42 pm »
Here's an update on our software upgrades:

We've also added another plugin, which is configured to prevent Tool Wranglers from posting any links.  Basically, until you get twenty posts the forum will strip any links you try to post.

In addition, new members, with under about 10 posts have to do the "pick the wobbly letters and numbers out of this box and type them in again to prove you're not a spambot" thing before you can send messages on the PM system.  They also only can get about 2 PMs, including outgoing, in their boxes before they have to clear them out.
This was set up to prevent the "join and PM to people, saying you're admin, and linking them to spam & viruses" spammers.
« Last Edit: November 10, 2010, 05:27:48 pm by Patti L. »
Sanity on loan. Call back next year.

Patti L.

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Re: Of boards, topics and moderation
« Reply #5 on: January 12, 2012, 10:36:52 am »
How to add to, correct, or flat out delete a post, so you don't look like a "post whore" or have things you quote not attribute to the original poster..

After you hit the post button, on the upper right corner you'll see three options,

Quote   Modify   Remove

Quote you don't usually use for your own posts, unless you're playing a game, or you are having an ongoing discussion with someone.  But, if someone made a point about, oh, Mercy's relationship with Jesse, for instance, two pages ago on the thread - you don't want to make people search back for it.  You hit the "Quote" button on their post, and the system will import a box of their words, with their name above the box, like this:

Here's an update on our software upgrades:

We've also added another plugin, which is configured to prevent Tool Wranglers from posting any links.  Basically, until you get twenty posts the forum will strip any links you try to post.

In addition, new members, with under about 10 posts have to do the "pick the wobbly letters and numbers out of this box and type them in again to prove you're not a spambot" thing before you can send messages on the PM system.  They also only can get about 2 PMs, including outgoing, in their boxes before they have to clear them out.
This was set up to prevent the "join and PM to people, saying you're admin, and linking them to spam & viruses" spammers.

Then you can have their exact words in front of both you and the other readers, so the discussion is over what was really said, not an estimate of it. 

If you're posting some kind of news, or random musings, and something else on the same subject occurs to you, or if you write a "Hi, Patti, how's your morning?" post, then hit "reply", and then see that say Varg posted too, greeting you?  You can click on "Modify" and your post will open again so that you can include a greeting to her, ask how her evening is going, tell her some piece of news or joke that seems specific to her part of the world.

If you hate your post, or you find that someone (or several someones) have said the same thing already, and it's just... not really needed, you can click on "remove".   Poof, no post.
Sanity on loan. Call back next year.

Patti L.

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Re: Of boards, topics and moderation
« Reply #6 on: March 10, 2012, 10:47:41 am »
 A quick guide to the buttons above your "reply" or PM message box. B = bold font Italics Underline Strike through which you can figure out when to use through a bit of browsing & context.  We often use it to laugh at ourselves.
The sort of scribbly one next does this:
You type some text and
it goes ahead and orders it differently
from the default text blocks, as you see in this paragraph.


Next
You type some text and
it goes ahead and orders it differently
from the default text blocks, as you see in this paragraph.

Center:
You type some text and
it goes ahead and orders it differently
from the default text blocks, as you see in this paragraph.

Right justify:
You type some text and
it goes ahead and orders it differently
from the default text blocks, as you see in this paragraph.

The "Font Face" drop box gives options for what typeface you might want to use.
Font Size gives you everything from tiny to quite large; it has half a dozen standard sizes, but you can click it and get something like 12pt, say, and change the 2 into a 3 or 4, to get something that's not initially offered.  "Change color" does that.
We use it sparingly, and because there are several backgrounds that can be used on personal settings, we stay away from the light colors like pink & yellow, in general.

Next row starts with the Img button for bringing in pictures without using attachments. If you quote this, even without sending it, you'll see how the coding brackets the computer gobbledegook that identifies the photo location, but I'm going to add a space in these brackets, so you can see. 
First, it offers this:   [img][ /img]  You need to squeeze your cursor between the ] and the [ in the center, and paste your pic.   [img]http://icanhascheezburger.files.wordpress.com/2012/03/funny-animal-http://icanhascheezburger.com/captions-animal-capshunz-creepy-come-ons-sloth.jpg[ /img]

Then is the link button, for especially if you want to not show all the code, have something like...
clicky instead of http://icanhascheezburger.com/ on the screen.
Then... I don't use the next 2 buttons, so I'm less clear on them.  LOL  I think you shortcut to give your email address as listed in your profile, rather than having to type it out, with the little envelope icon.  The file folder one says "Insert FTP Link."  I have no clue.
glow is next, mine seems to default to red, but you can change [ glow=red,2,300][ /glow] to =green although you may have to specify a different number from the 2,300.  It's another one I don't use hardly ever. 
I also don't tend to use this. Theoretically, it gives shadows to the letters... Huh.
The "<-M" button gives you a marquee effect, your words scroll from the right edge of the screen to the left continuously.  Another to use sparingly.  "sup" will give you the General IdeaTM pretty easily, and "sub" is also fairly obvious but "Tt" is another mystery.  It says "teletype" when I hover over it. 
You can insert tables but why would you need to?  The hashmark # lets you insert code.  I recommend against it unless you're in the tech geek thread, "Talyn's Tech Talk". 

The speech balloon is uber cool; that gives you quotes
Quote
so nobody wonders, "did Penny Whistler say that, or did Patti?"
The next button gives you a sort of bullet point format, although it only offers about 3 bullets before you have to copy the [ l][ /l] thing. 
Then you have the numbered list option, which I never remember in time to make it worth the effort.  :P

I'm also unsure what "horizontal rule" does, the <__> button.
The "SP" is for the famous "black bars of doom"  :D  We use those to hide spoilers, as if I were saying something I'd heard at the signing last night, that wasn't public knowledge, I'd have a black bar here which you can hover your cursor over to read, or make sure you don't bring the cursor over it if you don't want to know what I've said. 
I've never used the last 2 buttons, and I suspect you probably don't want to either, until  you've gotten comfortable with the more basic things.

The smilies are fairly self evident, and since there's no tone of voice on the screen,  ;) we use them a fair amount - that is, use them to show you're joking  :D , or irritated (  >:( ) or whatever  O) , but not a jillion in a row.  People get dizzy with  bOuNcY bOuNcY bOuNcY bOuNcY bOuNcY bOuNcY bOuNcY bOuNcY bOuNcY for rows and rows.  :-\  Three are usually plenty, if that.

If you want to check that you've got it right - especially if you're using spoiler bars! - you have two buttons under the text box, "Post" and "Preview".  Click Preview, and you can get a look at how it will post (or go to your correspondent in a PM).  If it's not right, you can try to fix it and go back down.  Then you may go, "Wait, I don't have 'Reply' any more!"  DON'T PANIC.  "Send" or "Save" will have replaced "Post".  It's the same thing, so if you're happy with it, click that.  If it's still not right, keep playing with it & trying it in "Preview" until either it works or you get too frustrated or run out of time.  At that point, you might cut/paste it from the thread into a PM to a mod.  Ask, "I'm trying to get it to do X, and it will only do... T, or P, can you fix it & send it back please?"
Sanity on loan. Call back next year.