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Have TORN's founders/modars ever considered having an official De-lurk Day?
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The Grey Elf
Gondor


May 27 2013, 5:06pm

Post #1 of 36 (973 views)
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Have TORN's founders/modars ever considered having an official De-lurk Day? Can't Post

Some visitors may just need a little encouragement. You might get some responses from first-timers if they look at it as a just a one-time shot opportunity. Because once you post once, it becomes so much easier to do so again and again. Just an idea.Smile


CuriousG
Valinor


May 27 2013, 5:08pm

Post #2 of 36 (239 views)
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That is a cool idea. // [In reply to] Can't Post

 


Nightingale
Rohan


May 27 2013, 5:42pm

Post #3 of 36 (233 views)
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Agreed. Good plan// [In reply to] Can't Post

 


"You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me" - C. S. Lewis

"That line between the earth and sky came beckoning to me..." - Laurie's Song


DanielLB
Immortal


May 27 2013, 7:37pm

Post #4 of 36 (237 views)
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Why just one day? [In reply to] Can't Post

I hope the discussions here encourage people to join in all the time. I think we should encourage people to de-lurk all year round. Wink


Magpie
Immortal


May 27 2013, 8:23pm

Post #5 of 36 (232 views)
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"Take off the Ring!" day? [In reply to] Can't Post

:-)


LOTR soundtrack website ~ magpie avatar gallery
TORn History Mathom-house ~ Torn Image Posting Guide


entmaiden
Forum Admin / Moderator


May 27 2013, 9:16pm

Post #6 of 36 (232 views)
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I love the idea! [In reply to] Can't Post

While we always encourage the lurkers to join, having an official day can help them jump in. Maybe we have some extra-welcoming posts to go with it, like we ask the members to post about their concerns about de-lurking, or give positive encouragement for others to join.


The Grey Elf
Gondor


May 27 2013, 10:00pm

Post #7 of 36 (224 views)
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Magpie, that is brilliant!! [In reply to] Can't Post

It sounds so much better than de-lurking (a term I have never cared for -- it's sounds too negative and unfriendly to me.)


Altaira
Superuser / Moderator


May 27 2013, 10:20pm

Post #8 of 36 (219 views)
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Ditto [In reply to] Can't Post

I like the idea and I like Magpie's title.

So, does everyone think a weekend day would be better or a week day? Anyone else reading, feel free to take off your ring and weigh in. WinkLaugh


Koru: Maori symbol representing a fern frond as it opens. The koru reaches towards the light, striving for perfection, encouraging new, positive beginnings.



"Life can't be all work and no TORn" -- jflower

"I take a moment to fervently hope that the camaradarie and just plain old fun I found at TORn will never end" -- LOTR_nutcase





Magpie
Immortal


May 27 2013, 11:00pm

Post #9 of 36 (220 views)
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I've noticed that there are lot more posts made during the week [In reply to] Can't Post

They drop off just about when most people in the US are leaving work on Fridays. lol... that tells me that more people post at work than at home.

I'm just the opposite. I'm ready to kick in when I'm home but I don't visit while at work.


LOTR soundtrack website ~ magpie avatar gallery
TORn History Mathom-house ~ Torn Image Posting Guide


Donry
Tol Eressea


May 27 2013, 11:06pm

Post #10 of 36 (213 views)
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The week might be better... [In reply to] Can't Post

as I am one of those folks who are gone most weekends to a cottage without any internet! I do more surfing during the week (not at work either), so it wouldn't surprise me if more folks were around during the weekdays

What's the matter, James? No glib remark? No pithy comeback?"

www.onesecondleft.com
@RDon1secleft
http://donryfetor.blogspot.com/
@DonryFetor


The Grey Elf
Gondor


May 27 2013, 11:45pm

Post #11 of 36 (211 views)
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Or perhaps we could turn things around to make it even easier for people to step into the light. [In reply to] Can't Post

Such as proactively addressing the most common reasons for lurking:

Don't Know How to Post - well, first you've got to be a member of TORn and be logged in -- provide the appropriate link. And for those newbies who get confusticated just coming up with a username or how to create an avatar, offer links to various find-your-hobbit/elf/dwarf name sites and to Magpie's tutorial on personal pix.

Don't Have the Time - for "Take Off the Ring" Day, one simple post is all it takes to be welcomed to the community, e.g. "Hi, my name is GoldberryCrumpet and this is my very first post." (Though actually that sounds a bit like something someone would say at a Lurkers Anonymous meeting, hee, but you get what I mean Wink)

Fear of Backlash/Criticism - this is awkward. Perhaps emphasize the Terms of Agreement and the moderators' responsibility for enforcing it? I'm not certain how to address this one. Some people know how to handle disagreeable disagreement and some people don't.Unsure

Is this line of thought going to far? Are my suggestions over-reaching? Anyone's thoughts would be welcome. Smile


JWPlatt
Grey Havens


May 28 2013, 3:24am

Post #12 of 36 (206 views)
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Rules [In reply to] Can't Post

I wouldn't bring up rules whatsoever, even to say the mods are here to protect you. Officiously mentioning rules up front is enough to scare away anyone fearful of doing something wrong.

We're all just here drinking wine, eating cheese and catching some rays. Don't hit them with negative waves, man.


Loresilme
Valinor


May 28 2013, 12:56pm

Post #13 of 36 (172 views)
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That title is absolutely perfect! [In reply to] Can't Post

And I vote weekday also.


CuriousG
Valinor


May 28 2013, 2:12pm

Post #14 of 36 (178 views)
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I think the idea of rules [In reply to] Can't Post

Is to show people that there is some protection from being verbally attacked/humiliated. The fear of that keeps a lot of people from posting, and it's a valid concern since people can be so nasty on the internet in general (I like politics, but never post on political sites because of all the vitriol). There are also lurkers who feel they don't know as much as other people do, and they don't want to post something that will be ignored or scoffed at, so again, having some assurance via our rules that no one will call you an idiot for your posts would make people feel more welcome.

But I agree with your point that expecting people to read through a bunch of rules before their first post can discourage them, so maybe something briefer like a "mission statement" or a declaration this is a monitored, troll-free zone would help people out. Just my 2 cents.


Maciliel
Tol Eressea


May 28 2013, 2:38pm

Post #15 of 36 (162 views)
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i think this is a +fabulous+ idea. [In reply to] Can't Post

 
well done, grey elf. : )


cheers --

.


aka. fili orc-enshield
+++++++++++++++++++
the scene, as i understand it, is exceptionally well-written. fili (in sort of a callback to the scene with the eagles), calls out "thorRIIIIIIN!!!" just as he sees the pale orc veer in for the kill. he picks up the severed arm of an orc which is lying on the ground, swings it up in desperation, effectively blocking the pale orc's blow. and thus, forever after, fili is known as "fili orc-enshield."

this earns him deep respect from his hard-to-please uncle. as well as a hug. kili wipes his boots on the pale orc's glory box. -- maciliel telpemairo


Maciliel
Tol Eressea


May 28 2013, 2:39pm

Post #16 of 36 (166 views)
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brilliant!!!!!!! [In reply to] Can't Post

 
absolutely brilliant, magpie! : )


cheers ---

.


aka. fili orc-enshield
+++++++++++++++++++
the scene, as i understand it, is exceptionally well-written. fili (in sort of a callback to the scene with the eagles), calls out "thorRIIIIIIN!!!" just as he sees the pale orc veer in for the kill. he picks up the severed arm of an orc which is lying on the ground, swings it up in desperation, effectively blocking the pale orc's blow. and thus, forever after, fili is known as "fili orc-enshield."

this earns him deep respect from his hard-to-please uncle. as well as a hug. kili wipes his boots on the pale orc's glory box. -- maciliel telpemairo


The Grey Elf
Gondor


May 28 2013, 3:00pm

Post #17 of 36 (164 views)
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Yes, that's more of what I had in mind, CuriousG [In reply to] Can't Post

Provide a pertinent excerpt or two from the Terms, not the whole magilla. (Suddenly having a vision of Bilbo and his contract which had some puzzling flaps and fell all the way down to his furry toes Wink)


JWPlatt
Grey Havens


May 28 2013, 3:08pm

Post #18 of 36 (161 views)
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Rules and Consequences [In reply to] Can't Post

They'll still be called an idiot. Rules, like laws, exist as a basis for the enforcement of consequence. Rules are a litmus test of what kind of behavior one can expect that the rules have been enacted to prevent. i.e., Rules against against insulting others means that people insult each other, hence the basis for consequence.

I maintain that "Welcome! Enjoy!" from the staff is message enough to say they are here for you, and that the rules of peaceable assembly are implicitly held within the unofficious welcome.


(This post was edited by JWPlatt on May 28 2013, 3:11pm)


Magpie
Immortal


May 28 2013, 3:12pm

Post #19 of 36 (165 views)
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I think the best way to make people feel comfortable... [In reply to] Can't Post

...is to try to insure their first experiences are enjoyable.

If you are considering folk dancing for the first time, one hopes the first thing you encounter as you walk through the door isn't an assurance that they won't be treated badly and if someone does treat them badly, those people will be dealt with by the managers. :-)

I think more effective is to have a number of activities that newbies
1) can very easily participate in
3) won't feel at any disadvantage by not being *in* on the social culture of the boards

So, for example, a pants thread - the one rule (substitute any word in a quote for the word 'pants') - doesn't require any special knowledge or understanding of the board culture. People who have been here 10 years won't behave any differently than those that have been here 10 minutes.

Other light threads could include getting to know you with an emphasis on Tolkien (I mean... that's why we're here) so... when did you first read/watch Tolkien? Whose your favorite character? What's an interesting or amusing experience you've had connected with the books or movies?

Deeper threads could involve digging to a topic pertinent to different parts of the boards but with topics chosen to provide a good 'first thread at TORn' experience. A special SCOD for LOTR movies. Or something in the RR that is very accessible, that lets people from all levels of scholarship participate. Then people can try out the different areas and see what kinds of discussion take place on those boards.

The next effective way to make new posters feel comfortable is for the more seasoned posters - at least for those threads targeted for the event - not to indulge in in jokes amongst each other : using acronyms a new person might not understand without explaining them --- not referring to past events without explaining them -- etc. If we talk about the boards and the culture we talk about it as if we are a tour guide welcoming people, not as the clique that's been hanging out here forever. I don't think we do that (act like a clique) necessarily. But we can fall into a really easy familiarity with each other, making off hand references to femine, first ager, second ager, or reminisce about Blue Wizard. That's us and I'm not saying don't ever do it. But we might refrain from doing it while we're trying to make new people feel comfortable! :-)

And, if - heavens forbid - a new person is treated rudely, then others just step in and - without calling anyone out - just provide a more positive, supportive response. You essentially just step in front of the rude person and provide another face for the new person to interact with.

As for a mission statement, there used to be a simple one stated at the entry page for the Message Boards and Barliman's: Be friendly and patient with each other. After all, we are just having fun!

I lurk on a forum that is set up to serve neighborhoods. My city has tons of individual neighborhood boards on this forum as does some areas in Las Vegas, Framingham MA, and Christchurch NZ! They have rules like many boards but one they have is: we don't discuss board policies on the board. The policies and TOS are stated and enforced but debate about them takes place off boards by other modes of communication. That keeps the focus of conversations on neighborhoods and localities connecting and not on the boards themselves, thus derailing the purpose of the board.

Although debate and discussion about how TORn's message boards are moderated are allowed, I have come to think the most effective way things are moderated is for it just to happen quietly and without a lot of fuss.

I think the same happens with making new posters feel comfortable. They will feel comfortable because they have lots of opportunities to participate in ways they enjoy and in which they feel welcome Any bad experience will get handled by mods and they'll learn how that works.


LOTR soundtrack website ~ magpie avatar gallery
TORn History Mathom-house ~ Torn Image Posting Guide


JWPlatt
Grey Havens


May 28 2013, 3:29pm

Post #20 of 36 (171 views)
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Acronyms, References and Stepping In [In reply to] Can't Post

Magpie's approach is a great, positive approach. Avoid Three Letter Acronyms (TLA) without fully spelling them out first. See what I did there? And avoid other such references familiar only to experienced board members. If you need to link to the thread that explains acronyms, it's not very welcoming. Rules are, or should be, easy enough to find for new members that they don't have to be told up front in an officious manner. Overtly stating rules is a negative. People "stepping in," as Magpie says, in support of the guest rather than calling out the offender is a good example of the positive approach which rewards the guest and does not feed the negative attention offenders desire.


(This post was edited by JWPlatt on May 28 2013, 3:29pm)


entmaiden
Forum Admin / Moderator


May 28 2013, 3:58pm

Post #21 of 36 (157 views)
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Note that [In reply to] Can't Post

everyone explicitly agrees to abide by the rules when they register. It's been a long time since I registered here, but I remember my authorization e-mail saying that I agree to abide by the rules of the website and the message board, and there might have been a link to the rules.

I don't think it's necessary to re-state those rules, so I agree with you that mentioning them again is redundant.


Magpie
Immortal


May 28 2013, 4:02pm

Post #22 of 36 (171 views)
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I feel some need to say... [In reply to] Can't Post

...that I have learned some of these points from people I highly admire. And I highly admire them, in part, because they do things well that I don't always do so well. And I am always a work in progress.

I am better at helping people feel comfortable than confronting those I think aren't behaving well. :-)

I spent years trying to make children who didn't feel successful believe in themselves. And more years helping adults get comfortable trying a new thing (folkdancing) and asking their body to move - in public! - in ways they weren't used to moving.

I am a thinker and I have thought (and still do) very hard about how to be successful in those endeavors. And being a thinker, I tend to want to tell people what I think. But at some point, I realized that new people trying to get comfortable in a new place with a new skill often feel overwhelmed and when they start to feel overwhelmed, the more I talked... the more overwhelmed they got. Even saying, "don't feel overwhelmed" wasn't helping much.

When I saw that bit of panic in a new dancer's eye's I found the best way to support them was just to smile and keep dancing. I was having a good time. I was having a good time with them. I was convinced they would have a good time. It worked way, way, way more often and better - in the moment - than any words I could offer them.

We are here to talk. To converse. To discuss and even debate (in the best use of that term). But I don't think we have to consciously talk to people about how to feel comfortable. We just have to smile and show them we are comfortable. We like having them here. And we think they're going like it here.


LOTR soundtrack website ~ magpie avatar gallery
TORn History Mathom-house ~ Torn Image Posting Guide

(This post was edited by Magpie on May 28 2013, 4:04pm)


The Grey Elf
Gondor


May 28 2013, 5:00pm

Post #23 of 36 (169 views)
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So accentuate the positive and keep it casual. No argument from me! [In reply to] Can't Post

Smile


Eolin of Rohan
The Shire

Jun 4 2013, 3:48am

Post #24 of 36 (107 views)
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Agreed [In reply to] Can't Post

As a newbie myself I can say that this sounds great! And excellent advice Magpie:)


Eolin of Rohan
The Shire

Jun 4 2013, 3:51am

Post #25 of 36 (125 views)
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Thanks [In reply to] Can't Post

The Gray Elf: thank you for bringing this up! Just reading this thread encouraged me to post, and to stop lurking! It feels great to have "taken off the ring" :)


(This post was edited by Eolin of Rohan on Jun 4 2013, 3:52am)

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