A Response about Mods

As many of you know, I’m very pro  mod.  (Moderator) I’m only one of many. I sent in yet another letter and I finally got a response back. It wasn’t really what I was expecting or even hoping for. But I’ll share it, because it does give important information about what to do if you need to report another player.

Mine:

Hello there, Please forgive me if this isn’t sectioned under the right subject, what I’m about to ask certainly feels like a game issue. How do you want players to proceed when it comes to reporting player issues? And by that I mean, how do you want us as a player base to report and handle issues like:

— Bullying

— Cursing

— Spam

I’m asking because for global chat, this is a constant. If I could describe the global channel in a word, it would be volatile. It’s always an option to close the chat window or to avoid the channel when things are getting heated. One might think that’s an easy feat to do. For an adult like myself, who only plays around to unwind, yes. But I imagine that for the age group this game is targeted for, it’s not quite that simple to turn the other cheek.

I say all this to suggest a moderating system. From what I understand, messages are moderated now, but there are times when immediate action is needed. Especially for the bullying. Never in a million years did I think I’d be saying this, but there really needs to be consequences for the wrong actions. And I think the player base needs more clarity on what those actions are. I’ve heard rumors that a volunteer system is being tested out, and I’m hoping that this is true.(My fingers are crossed.) But until then, what would you like us players to do when we are in or we witness these situations in the chat room?

The two major things that pop in my head are to avoid the conflict, to use the ignore function, and close the chat window. The other is to take a screen capture and send it in. But what kind of details would the staff need to know? (Other than details of the situation.) I really enjoy this game, and I want to see it grow. Mind you this is just my opinion, but I really do believe that a moderator system would help it do just that.

Thanks for your time.

Sincerely,

##My Real Name##

(Player Avery NightRoad)

The Response:

Hi (My real name),

The chat is indeed moderated and there are consequences for bullying, which ranges from temporary suspension to permanent ban and removal of the ability to chat.
At the moment, we cannot put moderators on all our servers – we have around 15 servers in several different languages in different countries with different time zones – and it is impossible for us to manage the chat this way. We currently read through the chat logs every day. Our chat systems flags anything that is against the rules or seems to be filter avoidance for us to look at and we can act on it.

If you wish to help and want to report players, just message us to this address with the username and what they did that breaks the rules. You can also send us screenshots of the chat window when you see someone being abusing, flooding the chat with repeated symbols or harassing other players for their accounts. Anything that breaks our Terms of Service can be reported and we will investigate it and deal with the user breaking the rules.

Thank you for your message and your feedback.

Regards,
Catherine, Star Stable support

So what to do should you see bullying, spam or filter blocking.

– Take a screen shot (See link below for tutorial)

– List the user name of the party(ies) involved

– They don’t list this, but give them a time if you can, it may make it easier for them to comb through chat logs.

– Send it to the support team.

(I tend to get faster response with the contact form)

After this my hope for moderators on all servers was definitely deflated. 
Not diminished. Just deflated.
Advertisements

6 thoughts on “A Response about Mods

  1. I completely understand that fully integrating a functioning moderator system takes time (though I certainly think that should have been included from the beginning, because if they couldn’t see this issue coming up eventually, they’re just lying to themselves, or they’ve never been around young kids). But until that happens I really think it’s necessary for them to make an official statement about it in the news. There are rules for behavior in the ToS, but let’s be honest, we all know no one reads them. And it’s only been said in emails, and by other players, to report bad behavior to the support. I think we need to start asking for at least this. I’ve already sent a few emails asking for acknowledgment of the issue (and possibly addressing what they are doing about getting moderators). Maybe you would be willing to do the same? 🙂

    • I also agree that it will take time to implement a moderating system. I was a mod for an extremely large sim game for several years. A lot goes into making a system work. We were nothing but volunteers from the game’s players.

      They kept a log of which mods were from what time zone and what hours were best to find them online. To apply you had to be 18 or over and you had to send a valid photo copy of an ID to prove it. We each had our own ticket system that we monitored. If player reports came in, we checked the logs.

      That’s another thing that I’m kind of shocked that SSO doesn’t have. A “Report Player” system.

      But there is a major difference here. The game I worked with was strictly in English. SSO is spanning several countries and multiple langues.

      I wouldn’t expect an over night fix, but I was hoping for a more defined answer as to if there would be a such a system eventually. What I got was ambiguous.

      I keep hoping with all these letters that they’ll at least make a statement. There really does needs to be a page set aside that says “These are the rules and this is what you can expect if you break them.” I was hoping that since they have players asking “What do I do if…?” they’d address it. I quess we’ll have to see.

      I agree. Most adults don’t even read the TOS, and they think teens will? If they’d just clearly state the rules and the consequences instead of burying them in the fine print, there would be no excuse to not knowing the rules.

      I also like the idea of having to accept or decline the rules before you can have access to the chat room. (Something every player should have to do /every time/ they get on.) It’s just a thought. It’d be an inconvenience, but it’d be a reminder.

      You don’t even have to ask if I’ll help. It doesn’t change anything but the plan of action. 😀 Right now I’d be happy just to see them publicly address the issue.

      • I definitely think that not having a moderator system in place before they even opened the game was their biggest mistake, and now they’re dealing with a lot of angry players.

        I have also worked as a moderator in the past, and I know it’s a lot of hard work to manage a well-functioning team (regardless of the game system you have). I’m definitely not asking for this to be implemented overnight. I like your idea of adding a place you have to read and accept the rules before playing and chatting. It will definitely keep it in the minds of the players, and right now that is what we need. Until moderators are added, we need to spread the word to the community as a whole. And if we can raise awareness that way, it will lessen the need for moderators. Treat the source first.

      • Exactly, there are still several steps they could take to curb some of these issues. I suppose we must keep suggesting them until we’re heard.

  2. Thanks so much for that. The more we band together, the more likely we are to see some changes for the better.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s