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Old 2012-01-31, 23:06   Link #61
Sackett
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NightWish View Post
No invite necessary; I was going to reply. However, I'd like to make a considered response, so I need to reread everything more carefully. Glancing over the thread my first impression is that there may be legitimate concerns being expressed, but they are actually being lost amidst the rhetoric and hyperbole. It is going to take me time (that I don't have much of) to get my head around the points. Hence no reply yet.
I would say that the essential problem here is that we are being demanded to prove that creating new threads would add value by presenting specific examples of discussion that are being suppressed.

But I don't know what new threads would be created. That's why I'd like it to be allowed. You could have all sorts of interesting threads that most people would never think of, but one person did. That's the benefit of decentralization. You don't have to just have the standard thread topics.

The current system values order and standardization over creativity and innovation.

Let me give a concrete example: The recent show Penguindrum had a large amount of symbolism. Including repeated motifs in different episodes. This symbolism would then be discussed in each episode thread.

Around episode 19 or so, I realized that earlier symbolism was getting lost because it was discussed in a previous episode thread. So I requested a new thread dedicated to discussing symbolism, along with an opening about the apple symbolism. No response.

I also requested a thread dedicated to discussing how Penguindrum was a response to Aum, since it had become clear that it explicitly was. I suggested as an opening several quotes by anime directors discussing how Evangelion was a response to Aum, and how Aum had shattered the Otaku mindest, followed by some thoughts about how Penguindrum differed in it's response.

No response.

I think that those threads would have elevated discussion of Penguindrum. But it wasn't following the standard order of things. It would have imposed a non-standard format of discussion. And that would have made the discussions more interesting and easier to follow.

Which (in response to the repeated suggestion that everything be posted in the general thread) is why having separate threads are attractive means of organizing discussion. I mean why have sub forums at all? Having a thread dedicated to a specific way of analyzing the subject allows for a focused discussion that simply can't be maintained in a general thread.

Which by the way is another one of the sore points among the community. What is the criteria used to decide which shows get sub forums anyway?

It doesn't seem to be popularity, and it certainly isn't post volume. Nor does it appear to be based on the likelihood of speculation and theory posts (which I would think one of the more attractive items to allow individual threads for). Mostly it seems to be the likelihood of there being a large amount of images and/or merchandise.

Which seems an odd preference to favor with a sub forum.

Of course I could very well be wrong, but whenever we ask what the criteria is the response is simply that the moderators do have a set objective criteria and that series are evaluated on it.

I believe you, but I find it confusing that you won't let us know what it is.

Anyway, I think I started to get off topic there. The key point is that we feel like you keep telling us that nothing valuable is lost by having greater restrictions on posting new threads, and that we should have prove that something valuable is lost first. I instead keep wondering why the burden shouldn't be to prove that limiting the posting of new threads is beneficial.
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Old 2012-01-31, 23:49   Link #62
Solace
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sackett View Post
The key point is that we feel like you keep telling us that nothing valuable is lost by having greater restrictions on posting new threads, and that we should have prove that something valuable is lost first. I instead keep wondering why the burden shouldn't be to prove that limiting the posting of new threads is beneficial.
In regards to how to improve our response to thread creation requests, this is something we've been discussing behind the scenes for a few months now. I had brought up my concerns with the general philosophy we have toward forum discussion. It's been a slow discussion, admittedly, but it's a big change from our point of view. It involves reviewing all of the policies we've built around limited thread creation and how we build and categorize the forums in general.

So on the front of thread creation, we are looking to improve that and are open to suggestions, except to completely open the gates. I can tell you right now that no staff member is interested in that option.

In regards to how thread requests exist right now, since people aren't constantly requesting, we don't constantly check them either. I won't offer excuses or specific reasons why we miss thread requests, as that would be pointless to discussion. I can suggest, at least for now, that if we haven't answered a thread request after a few days to bring it immediately to our attention via private message or reporting the post to request attention.

As an offside, if you still want a symbolism thread in Penguindrum's forum, just let me know. We'll work together on creating it.

Finally in regards to our process for deciding what series should be granted a subforum, the reason we do not release how we decide is because we do not want the community to know what criteria we follow and thus rally around that in hopes of influencing our decision. For example, if we rated post count highly, people might simply spam posts thinking that would make us pick their favorite series. Of course we don't just look at post count, but a wide range of factors.

In a nutshell though, we recognize the value in creative discussion, but at the same time we do not wish to go back to how things were. Striving to find that balance between order and chaos is not an easy task.
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Old 2012-01-31, 23:51   Link #63
relentlessflame
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sackett View Post
Let me give a concrete example: The recent show Penguindrum had a large amount of symbolism. Including repeated motifs in different episodes. This symbolism would then be discussed in each episode thread.

Around episode 19 or so, I realized that earlier symbolism was getting lost because it was discussed in a previous episode thread. So I requested a new thread dedicated to discussing symbolism, along with an opening about the apple symbolism. No response.

I also requested a thread dedicated to discussing how Penguindrum was a response to Aum, since it had become clear that it explicitly was. I suggested as an opening several quotes by anime directors discussing how Evangelion was a response to Aum, and how Aum had shattered the Otaku mindest, followed by some thoughts about how Penguindrum differed in it's response.

No response.
I think I already addressed this when you brought this up last time. "No response" doesn't mean no. It more likely means that the requests were missed for some reason. You could have helped us out at the time by gently reminding us of the request or posting more/better explanations to help show the value of the threads. Your bringing this up as a supporting argument may point to a flaw of the requesting mechanism (since requests can get forgotten inadvertantly), or if they had been clearly rejected may support a case that the criteria are too strict. But I don't think the fact that you didn't receive a reply to your request translates into allowing free/open topic creation. Besides, the context of this thread is older series, not series that are currently airing, so even the fix proposed in this thread wouldn't have addressed the problem you experienced.

So, I regret that I and the other mods didn't catch your thread requests on-time to give you a good response. But I think the real issue there is a procedural oversight, not an unwillingness to accept creative thread requests that fall outside the norm.

Edit: Solace already posted while I wrote this.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sackett View Post
Which by the way is another one of the sore points among the community. What is the criteria used to decide which shows get sub forums anyway?

[...]

Of course I could very well be wrong, but whenever we ask what the criteria is the response is simply that the moderators do have a set objective criteria and that series are evaluated on it.

I believe you, but I find it confusing that you won't let us know what it is.
Actually, we do have a publicly-posted explanation of our criteria, available in our FAQs. Granted that it does still involve some subjectivity (and we're not revealing some sort of "secret sauce"), but we've done our best to provide an explanation of many of the factors we consider.
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Old 2012-02-02, 01:29   Link #64
Ascaloth
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Well, to make a minor recommendation, I think the least the moderators could do is to subscribe to the Thread Creation threads of the subforums they create. So that, you know, they will be informed immediately if any posts, and by extension possible thread requests, appear on the thread. Just saying.

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Old 2012-02-02, 01:59   Link #65
relentlessflame
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ascaloth View Post
Well, to make a minor recommendation, I think the least the moderators could do is to subscribe to the Thread Creation threads of the subforums they create. So that, you know, they will be informed immediately if any posts, and by extension possible thread requests, appear on the thread. Just saying.

Well, yes, I thought of that too of course. But sometimes I know what can also happen (at least to me!) is that you look at a request and you don't deal with it right that moment for whatever reason (busy, distracted, too tired, not sure of what to do, etc.) and then you end up forgetting. So yeah, a reminder can still be helpful if no one gets around to it after a while. (I guess maybe I only speak for myself because I have an absolutely horrid memory... )
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Old 2012-02-02, 02:00   Link #66
CrowKenobi
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ascaloth View Post
Well, to make a minor recommendation, I think the least the moderators could do is to subscribe to the Thread Creation threads of the subforums they create. So that, you know, they will be informed immediately if any posts, and by extension possible thread requests, appear on the thread. Just saying.

I would think that subscribing to the sub-forums themselves would be a lot more efficient.
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Old 2012-02-02, 13:29   Link #67
NightWish
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Spoiler for History; tldr:
(Apologies for spoiler tag misused, I intend to fix that with better alternatives... soon)

Today

All this (and I'm sure more besides) forms the "experience" that leads directly the state we have today. A policy of creating forums, using a template process, when the statistics and other factors indicate that a sub-forum is required.

So why limiting? Because it worked in the past and still seemed to be working.

The Issues

Now, looking at the perceived issues with the current setup. Firstly, I've tried to read as much as I could of the thread but frankly it keeps deviating and covering all manner of different points. I'm going to try to narrow the focus down a bit to make it easier to manage. I'm also going to avoid playing devil's advocate, as the other staff have already presented enough arguments along the lines of our policy. Every time I disagree or am uncertain about an argument, I'll go with it and assume it correct. For want of verifiable evidence. "It" being my interpretation of the general argument posited by this thread, as opposed to any prejudices I might have.

The core issue seems to be that discussion is hard in the current set-up (it gets easily derailed and repeats itself). As a result the quality of the discussion is diminished.

I don't know the degree to which this concern is valid. If the perception is widespread then there is probably a problem, because even if illusory, it breeds discontent and has a negative impact on the community generally. The idea behind the sub-forums was to release the interesting discussion from the other stuff that was clogging up series threads. Originally highlighted by spoilers running ahead of the release discussion, but equally true of image-heavy posts, etc. In some cases we simply didn't want the "other stuff", so didn't create threads for it, just stopped people posting.

I've not analysed the content of threads of today, but I can imagine that the general trend for "short and frequent" contributions, rather than "slow and considered", is increasing the churn in discussion threads and causing fragmentation that mimics the problems we saw with single threads; only now in each and every discussion centric thread of the sub-forums.

If we accept this to be true, splitting threads might help. To do this properly requires proactive treatment. Going back to the issues we identified previously: staff need to be active in the forum and be in-tune with the series specifically, in order to identify when this is necessary. Staff motivation about the series would be a requirement here. Additionally, there is the hurdle that splitting is not something we do very often in general, so it requires "practice".

The Proposal

An alternative, proposed by the initial argument, is to remove the limit on the forum and allow thread creation. The idea being that it is the limitation itself that forces people to post in the same thread, even if the topic should be elsewhere (thus necessitating splitting). This was counted by the argument that a facility exists for creating topics, if people would actually use it. The effectiveness of the thread suggestion process aside, the concept seems to be criticised for being too high a requirement for posters. Ironically that was the point, to filter out pointlessness. However, when there is a path-of-least-resistance, that just involves using an existing thread, even if not ideal, one can see a possible problem. This is probably compounded by the forum-wide policy of thread-reuse over thread-creation, and the aforementioned trend to post short and frequent (and thus necessarily without the same level of consideration as a more thought out post).

Combined with limiting, it seems to be argued that this "thread quality wall" as I'll call it, has a chilling effect on those who want to post in a more detailed, structured way. They can neither summon the motivation nor justification to request new threads, or the idea of needing justification in the first place discourages them, or when they do the request is slowed and they give up. Thus, given they wouldn't post for sake of being off-topic, they don't post at all. If we accept this argument for a moment, it would not be hard to see why one would conclude that what is actually posted can only trend to banality. Anything slightly interesting (but not clearly on the currently trending topic of the amorphous thread) is dropped (or if actually posted is missed and gets lost in the frequent churn of "chat"). It is possible that to some people this is what is being observed.

Essentially this is a question of posting quality, a highly subjective notion at the best of times, and how best to maintain it. If we assume the idea of quality is somewhat agreed on, then an approach, to ensure it, is only effective if said approach decreases posts of lower quality and facilitates posts of higher quality.

Just Moving the Problem

Limiting the forums did appear to meet this requirement, in the opinion of the staff, as we had less pointless threads to deal with. The argument here centres on the notion that the decrease in pointless threads has only shifted the problem. People don't create (and infrequently request) pointless threads because they would be rejected. However, they can just post sort-of-on-topic in an existing thread and unconsciously hope it doesn't get noticed by an in-tune member of staff or avid post-reporter. The higher-minded and persistent cope with this off-topic content and work or argue their way past it, forcing their own topics onto the thread, or if really motivated they do actually get new threads made. The middle-ground, the silent majority, simply don't bother trying to foster new topics, and just tag along frustrated with whatever is trending.

Replacing pointless threads with collections of pointless posts would indeed undermine the original aims. It is impossible with my current resources to conclude if this is what is happening one way or another. The question then comes down to how many people feel this way about the threads and how far are we willing to impose a new order on the community to cater for the aggrieved (possibly too strong a term, but it gets the point across).

Suggestion's Impact

Assuming, for a moment, that it is true (or that enough people feel it to mean it might as well be), what impact would removing the limitation actually have, and are there alternatives?

Firstly, the splitting alternative isn't really a starter. Trying to get the staff to pull apart (and thus manage) a problem that is not evident enough to have been noticed by the said same staff (if they had we'd not be having this discussion), is unquestionably silly and impractical. Even if a method/policy could be defined, it would require too much work.

So, removing the limit. Historically we feel justified in believing this would increase the number of silly threads. If we accept the problem as stated above, then for it to be fixed by this solution, an increase is a necessity. If the number of silly threads didn't increase, and the number of posts stays the same, nothing has changed. The pointless posts are still mixed-in. It is ridiculous to believe simply being open would reduce the pointlessness.

So, if accepting that an increase in pointless threads is an acceptable way of decreasing the pointless posts in existing threads (I'm not saying it is, just for instance), how can they be managed without burning the staff out. Simply allowing them to exist is undesirable, but is it a suitable price to pay if the problem is real? Would lock and die be sufficient? Additionally what policies would be needed to ensure that new threads are not merged back into existing threads (when staff can't see why they should be separate). If we can't see the issue now (and hence don't split threads) would we be able to if they started split and thus had to resist the urge to merge (per the site's general policy).

Summary

... because I've waffled for too long here already.
  • I don't know if the problem is real. On one hand it feel like a criticism of the community (they either can't be bothered to request or don't post quality stuff "any more"). On the other hand, those people might be in the minority and the majority might be being silently held back by the rigid structure. Either way I am prepared to give it the benefit of the doubt if enough people feel it is an issue. Enough people would mean, however negative the criticism sounds, it is a commonly held opinion. I've not decided what "enough people" actually means numerically.
  • Assuming there is a problem, I can see that removing the limit, as it is today, is the only practical solution to freeing quality discussion from the pointlessness. Adding sub-forums was the only practical solution to the single-thread problem before, if that exists now in the existing essentially single-threads, allowing more flexible thread creation appears to be the only viable solution.
  • I do not think making the forums completely unlimited is a suitable solution in-and-of-itself. Simply lifting the limit and allowing a free-for-all may improve one or two threads, but it would be to the detriment of the forums more generally. It doesn't resolve the problem of pointlessness, it just moves it again. This detriment would first need to mitigated.

Possible mitigation strategies
  • Only lifting the limit on forums with lower traffic. The downside to this is inconsistency (people will constantly ask why they can post in one place and not another). Additionally it may not solve the problem if the forum itself is low volume, it is probably mostly dead. If there is a wall to contribution here it may be more a lack of interest than the structure. Even if the structure is changed, would interest really be sparked? For the sake of argument and to continue contemplating in a meaningful way, I assume yes, it would.
  • Lift the limit after a time period; maybe after the show has finished airing. This seems to be one of the compromise solutions being suggested. Unfortunately it wouldn't stop the pointlessness, though it might contain it until the buzz has died down. The disadvantage with this, if you accept there is a problem with limited forums, is you're probably accepting the worst of both worlds: problematic discussion during the show and pointless threads afterwards.
  • Apply the limit after a time period. This would constrain the time during which pointless threads need to be moderated heavily (and thus the extra staff effort), while still allowing more freedom. Once settled, and limited, discussion would continue in partly structured, partly community defined areas. This is more akin to how we migrate from single-thread to limited forum now, and how the original sub-forums evolved from open to limited, so may be appropriate. However, it seems to be at odds to the original suggestions being made in the thread.
  • Remove the limit for some users. This is essentially expanding the current thread-creator role. The problem here is that if the group is wider it makes for separation, elitism, and drives a wedge between members of the community. Staff are somewhat separated by necessity, but we try to play it down as much as possible; I don't think we want to encourage it more generally. Probably not a viable option, even if community driven (which itself would be a departure from past policy).
  • Limit only a selected group of users; the opposite of the above. This would have to be based on a repeat-offender principle. We already issue infractions and short-term bans for people who can't post properly, completely limiting per-forum access has been on the cards before, but not just for posting. Limiting posting for one forum that would require groups for each forum which becomes unwieldy; so it would mean limiting for all, which if everyone else can post seems draconian. Additionally it might just be one series that the poster is particularly bad at creating threads. I'm not convinced it is a workable model.
  • There may be others... but I'm tired and hungry.

I realise I've not come to any firm conclusions; but in fairness I never said I would. Feel free to pick apart my analysis, correct me if I've assumed/interpreted something incorrectly, or if I've plain missed the point of your concerns... I will try to follow the topic further, just don't expect me to be on-hand to answer/reply in a short time frame. Or indeed expect me to start the process of site policy change on the back of the above attempt at understanding. Things change slowly here, if at all, regulars should know that by now . Oh and excuse the typos, like I said... tired, hungry...
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Old 2012-02-02, 14:22   Link #68
Ledgem
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Even though I basically said it in my +rep message to you, I want to repeat here that I appreciate your taking the time to write all of that up. It shows a lot of consideration on your part, even going so far as to look into the history of the policy.

I'll repeat something that I mentioned to relentlessflame: we all want the same thing. We all desire to have "high quality" discussions take place in the forum, and to be able to engage in them. It is because I don't perceive the amount and level of discussion that I would hope for that I started this thread, and a similar perception is what lead to the creation and extension of the policies that are in place today. The sad reality that all of us must face is that no matter what is done, "high quality" discussions will likely always be in the minority. No amount of rules and structure will encourage those types of discussions; similarly, infinite freedom would not, either. It is up to the users to generate that sort of discussion. I think that AnimeSuki does much better than other forums in that regard - it's what attracted me to and kept me at this forum nine years ago - but perhaps it's impossible to push it further. I say that because I also recognize that "high quality" is a highly subjective term (as is "low quality" or "silly").

In addition to the solutions that you mentioned, NightWish, there are some others. As relentless and I previously discussed, the forum is currently in "flat" mode. If "threaded" mode were enabled, long and concurrent discussions within threads would become much more organized and easier to track. It would have consequences for forum navigation, however, and probably on server load, all for what would essentially just be turning threads into sub-forums.

If social groups are an intended outlet, then they should go a bit farther. Have their discussions show up in forum searches, make them have subscriptions that show up in the control panel, and find a way to elevate their profile - perhaps have a thread in each sub-forum that lists all pertinent social groups. For those series that don't have their own sub-forum, have the list in the first post of that thread.

While those are suggestions that could possibly work, I see a theme between the two of them: they are work-arounds to the restrictions imposed by the current system. Are the restrictions really so necessary? When I think back to when I joined the forum, which I'll admit did have rules that were more strict than most other forums at the time, the real appeal behind it, the factor that raised the quality of discussions, had less to do with the rules and more to do with the users. While most anime forums were frequented by users in their young teens, it seemed that the average AnimeSuki user was somewhere between the late teens and early 20's. Even today, I am pleased to see that if anything, the average age has likely increased since that time. It may be a generalization, but I think that few would argue that the level of sophistication of discussion increases with age. It is partly for that reason that I am not advocating for full, forum-wide removal of the restrictions, because I recognize that the average age of certain sub-forums is likely much lower. Additionally, being over the age of 20 doesn't make you immune to starting ridiculous threads, and areas with a lot of traffic would be more prone to that.

While I'd be happy to discuss more specifics and possibilities of how things are, why they are the way that they are, and how things could be, I get the sense that there's a general fatigue setting in over this issue. Or perhaps I'm just getting fatigued with it.

What I'd like to leave off with, then, is to give a message to the staff overall (anyone who served over the past nine years, or will be serving in the future). Having come here for more than enough years to earn a PhD with, the forum has taken on a different meaning to me than it did in my early years. I'm truly grateful to those of you who volunteer the time and effort to keep the forums alive, thriving, and advancing. I hope that you are all still able to enjoy the forums and community as I have and continue to.
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Old 2012-02-02, 14:56   Link #69
Triple_R
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NightWish View Post
[*][INDENT]Lift the limit after a time period; maybe after the show has finished airing.
This is what I support, so that will be what I'll be focusing on here.


Quote:
This seems to be one of the compromise solutions being suggested. Unfortunately it wouldn't stop the pointlessness, though it might contain it until the buzz has died down. The disadvantage with this, if you accept there is a problem with limited forums, is you're probably accepting the worst of both worlds: problematic discussion during the show and pointless threads afterwards.
This suggestion wasn't made to combat "problematic discussion during the show". Quite the contrary, I think that the level of discussion during a show is fine.

During a show's airing, it makes some sense for episodes threads to be "front and center", and for those threads to dominate much of the discussion. The issue is that after a show has ceased airing, the episode threads naturally tend to die off. You will get the odd case of an AS member starting to watch a show a few months after it aired, and sharing his/her thoughts on the episode threads as s/he watches through the episodes. But aside from that, episode threads essentially turn into nothing more than post archives after a show has finished airing.

So then what's left for people who want to discuss a show on its associated series subforum?

Well, if you want to talk about a particular character, there's character discussion threads. If you want to post an image or talk about an image, there's the image thread. If you want to link to an AMV, there may be a "Music videos" thread. And there's a few other specialized templated threads.

But for most possible topics, all that's left is the "General Discussion" thread.

The problem here is that the General Discussion thread can be a mammoth, unwieldy creature by the time a show has gone through its initial airing. Much like what Irenicus wrote, long threads *are* scary, users *do* feel daunted or restricted, if they face a fifty-page (or more) General Discussion thread with the last posting date being two or more months ago.

This can be a sort of disincentive to posting, which I think can cause series subforums to basically die down prematurely, to the detriment of the fan community that would like to use them to continue to talk amongst themselves about one of their favorite anime shows.


There's also the fact that an update on "General Discussion" may well not draw attention like a brand new thread on a specific topic of interest would.

Yesterday this thread was put up on the Madoka Magica subforum, thanks to Solace approving it. It's only a day old, and it's on Page 2 with 24 replies and over 500 views.

Now, what do you think would have happened if I had simply updated Madoka Magica's "General Discussion" thread with a post about that ANN review?

Personally, I doubt it would have gathered as much attention or response as what this new thread did.

And I'll be honest - Typically I would have simply made a post into the "General Discussion" forum, but I was admittedly curious to see what response I'd get to my Madoka Magica thread idea given the ongoing discussion on this thread.

Under different circumstances, I never would have bothered to request that thread to be created.


But even having good thread ideas and requesting threads for them is no guarantee that such threads will ever be made.

A good example of that is this thread request made by Sackett, which he has already raised twice on this thread here. That still hasn't been created (or even formally accepted/denied).

The Penguin Drum subforum is largely inactive right now. A discussion on symbolism in an Ikuhara anime is about the most legit specific thread topic imaginable.

If we had freer thread creation on the MPD forum right now, I have little doubt that:

1) Sackett would have already posted this up.

2) High quality discussion would have resulted from it, and likely continue to result from it.

3) The Penguin Drum subforum would have been more active because of it.

4) People who like Penguin Drum but who aren't much into its symbolism would not have to wade through pages of detailed discussion on symbolism in the "General Discussion" thread in order to take part in a different sub-conversation on the General Discussion thread.


The idea behind freer thread creation on older series subforums isn't to negate "problematic discussion". It's to ensure that the series subforum enjoys a more natural and organic life-cycle, to the benefit of the AS users that make use of it. It's to ensure that series subforums can reach their full potential.


Limiting forums is a tool, and like most tools, it's useful in some contexts but not in all. There's situations where a large mallet is genuinely a very good tool to use. That doesn't mean you want to use it to squash a flea, though.
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Old 2012-02-02, 15:23   Link #70
hyl
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While i will agree and can understand your reasoning for wanting to create new threads for discussions. But i have to comment on some of your points

Quote:
Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post

But for most possible topics, all that's left is the "General Discussion" thread.

The problem here is that the General Discussion thread can be a mammoth, unwieldy creature by the time a show has gone through its initial airing. Much like what Irenicus wrote, long threads *are* scary, users *do* feel daunted or restricted, if they face a fifty-page (or more) General Discussion thread with the last posting date being two or more months ago.
This can be a sort of disincentive to posting, which I think can cause series subforums to basically die down prematurely, to the detriment of the fan community that would like to use them to continue to talk amongst themselves about one of their favorite anime shows.
Any anime without a sub forum already has a more cluttered and inefficient generic discussion threads than a serie with one.
So let's take Guilty crown and fate/zero as an example. Because those series have sub forums and the topic discussion have been seperated, the generic discussion thread is not as chaotic as like for example persona 4's thread. Also the generic discussion thread for guilty crown isn't even used that much ( there are even a few days between some posts. )


Quote:
Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post
There's also the fact that an update on "General Discussion" may well not draw attention like a brand new thread on a specific topic of interest would.

Yesterday this thread was put up on the Madoka Magica subforum, thanks to Solace approving it. It's only a day old, and it's on Page 2 with 24 replies and over 500 views.

Now, what do you think would have happened if I had simply updated Madoka Magica's "General Discussion" thread with a post about that ANN review?

Personally, I doubt it would have gathered as much attention or response as what this new thread did.
Less people would have seen it and i don't think that some people would have posted their comment on it, but 24 posts is not something "big".
Like for example after episode 3 and 4 of "Another", the posts increased by hundreds after 1 day.
I don't think the popularity from that thread comes from being a new thread, but rather because madoka is getting a US dub release later this month.



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Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post
A good example of that is this thread request made by Sackett, which he has already raised twice on this thread here. That still hasn't been created (or even formally accepted/denied).

The Penguin Drum subforum is largely inactive right now. A discussion on symbolism in an Ikuhara anime is about the most legit specific thread topic imaginable.

If we had freer thread creation on the MPD forum right now, I have little doubt that:

1) Sackett would have already posted this up.

2) High quality discussion would have resulted from it, and likely continue to result from it.

3) The Penguin Drum subforum would have been more active because of it.

4) People who like Penguin Drum but who aren't much into its symbolism would not have to wade through pages of detailed discussion on symbolism in the "General Discussion" thread in order to take part in a different sub-conversation on the General Discussion thread.
I don't think that a symbolism thread would have made the penguin drum sub forum that much more active. If a serie from a previous season already doesn't attract that many people as a serie from a year ago (Madoka), then i don't think that even a new thread would have revived the sub forum.

Last edited by hyl; 2012-02-02 at 15:41. Reason: typo
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Old 2012-02-02, 15:50   Link #71
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Originally Posted by hyl View Post
Any anime without a sub forum already has a more cluttered and inefficient generic discussion threads than a serie with one.
Which just goes to show that breaking series discussion up into more specific thread subtopics is beneficial, at least in the long-run.


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So let's take Guilty crown and fate/zero as an example. Because those series have sub forums and the topic discussion have been seperated, the generic discussion thread is not as chaotic as like for example persona 4's thread. Also the generic discussion thread for guilty crown isn't even used that much ( there are even a few days between some posts. )
That's right now, while episodes are airing. Episodes threads tend to draw a lot of general series discussion to them while episodes are airing. Much of that discussion gets refocused into General Discussion threads after a show stops airing, though. And s, not long after a show has stopped airing, its General Discussion thread is often a mammoth mess.


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Less people would have seen it and i don't think that some people would have posted their comment on it, but 24 posts is not something "big".
Every little bit helps.


Quote:
If a series from a previous season already doesn't attract that many people as a series from a year ago (Madoka), then i don't think that even a new thread would have revived the sub forum.
But what harm is there in letting people try?


In any event, I simply disagree with a couple of your points. I think that you're mistaken about the impact that a symbolism thread could have on the Penguin Drum series subforum, and I also think that new threads on the Madoka Magica subforum can make a positive impact regardless of the timing of a Blu-Ray/DVD release.


Why not experiment with freer thread creation in a couple older series subforums?

If it works, great. Gradually spread freer thread creation out to other series subforums, and see if it continues to work.

If it causes more problems than it solves, then go back to a strict limited subforum approach, having gained some valuable insights from the experiment.
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Old 2012-02-02, 16:15   Link #72
hyl
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post

That's right now, while episodes are airing. Episodes threads tend to draw a lot of general series discussion to them while episodes are airing. Much of that discussion gets refocused into General Discussion threads after a show stops airing, though. And s, not long after a show has stopped airing, its General Discussion thread is often a mammoth mess.
Kind of forgot to mention this on my previous post, but the point of using Fate/zero as an example was also meant to say that this anime (which is not airing this season) is hardly getting new posts in the generic discussion thread.

In fact all of the animes with a sub forum of the last season has a pretty inactive generic discussion thread these days, not just penguin drum but Haganai, Horizon, fate/zero as well. Which is wierd for horizon and fate zero, because those series are getting a 2nd cour in april and i would expect that people would speculate even more because both series ended with a cliffhanger.


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Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post
In any event, I simply disagree with a couple of your points. I think that you're mistaken about the impact that a symbolism thread could have on the Penguin Drum series subforum, and I also think that new threads on the Madoka Magica subforum can make a positive impact regardless of the timing of a Blu-Ray/DVD release.


Why not experiment with freer thread creation in a couple older series subforums?

If it works, great. Gradually spread freer thread creation out to other series subforums, and see if it continues to work.

If it causes more problems than it solves, then go back to a strict limited subforum approach, having gained some valuable insights from the experiment.

It doesn't hurt to experiment this, but somehow I am not sure if a new thread would make a sub forum that more popular. Like the dubbing of madoka , the madoka online game or the Steins;Gate movie were all threads made after the series ended. But those 3 threads didn't get too many posts and i am pretty sure that those 2 series are still more popular than penguin drum.
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Old 2012-02-02, 22:31   Link #73
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When I think back to when I joined the forum, which I'll admit did have rules that were more strict than most other forums at the time, the real appeal behind it, the factor that raised the quality of discussions, had less to do with the rules and more to do with the users. While most anime forums were frequented by users in their young teens, it seemed that the average AnimeSuki user was somewhere between the late teens and early 20's. Even today, I am pleased to see that if anything, the average age has likely increased since that time.
I am actually not convinced that the average age has increased; I believe it has decreased. The advent of streaming made anime accessible to a much wider audience that required less technical sophistication. Over the last few years, I have noticed a large increase in the amount of teenagers using the site. (But everyone has to start somewhere, of course.) The culture of appreciation towards fansubbers who were providing them access to this foreign media has largely disappeared as being able to watch anime the same day as the airing has become commonplace (and the interaction between fansubbers and members has decreased or largely been eliminated). I also think that a large amount of the older fans from that generation have moved-on and didn't follow anime as it made its transition over the last half-decade or so; some those who remain have hardened up in some ways. And some people have shifted their "bulkier" writing to blogs, or gone away from that format entirely preferring shorter avenues like Twitter. I would even say that what is meant by "discussion" has changed over time as well (polarized around those same two extremes: blog post and chatroom/image board). So all that to say, I do think the way people use forums has changed a great since when I joined, and the idea of using it for deep conversations is less prominent than it used to be. (But again, all that's only my perception, certainly not necessarily fact.)


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Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post
A good example of that is this thread request made by Sackett, which he has already raised twice on this thread here. That still hasn't been created (or even formally accepted/denied).

The Penguin Drum subforum is largely inactive right now. A discussion on symbolism in an Ikuhara anime is about the most legit specific thread topic imaginable.
This was indeed brought up twice, and it's clear that the boat was missed way back when. But it was never clear (at least to me) if he was still requesting for the threads, or if it was just regret for an opportunity lost. (In fact, Solace mentioned that if he still wanted the thread, to let him know.) So, if someone still wants this thread (or those threads), please post a suitable opening post in the appropriate request thread, and someone will consider it. At this point, given that we already missed the boat so long ago, we would otherwise consider those requests dead. (So denied pending re-submission if still relevant.) Regrettably, I didn't follow that show, so I'm not a good one to judge if it makes sense or not, but many other mods can help there.


That aside, if people don't like using the General Discussion thread after the fact since it's filled with noise from during the airing that's no longer relevant, another option (to add to the list) would be to create some sort of new thread for General Conversation for late-arrivers or who knows what to call it. Or, instead of turning the original thread into general discussion, we could start a new thread at that point to serve this purpose. I don't know if that's helpful, but these are simple things we could do that might help a bit (as I don't expect radical change to happen immediately anyway).
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Old 2012-02-02, 23:18   Link #74
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Originally Posted by relentlessflame View Post


That aside, if people don't like using the General Discussion thread after the fact since it's filled with noise from during the airing that's no longer relevant, another option (to add to the list) would be to create some sort of new thread for General Conversation for late-arrivers or who knows what to call it. Or, instead of turning the original thread into general discussion, we could start a new thread at that point to serve this purpose. I don't know if that's helpful, but these are simple things we could do that might help a bit (as I don't expect radical change to happen immediately anyway).
Kind of a General Discussion Version 2.0 thread? With a thread start date of shortly after the anime finishes airing?

That's an interesting idea.

Yes, I do think that might help. I'd be supportive of it, at least as a short-term solution.
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Old 2012-02-02, 23:18   Link #75
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@ relentlessflame: in this thread, you mentioned about social groups can be a place for free discussion, but those are unknown to most new member in the forum (i only know about their existence after 2 month in the forum when viewing a user profile and took me some more time to know the link to social group page hidden in the community tab). so i think every series that have a subforum should have a thread list all social groups related to the series like how myanimelist have a section in the anime page list all club related to it.
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Old 2012-02-02, 23:31   Link #76
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@ relentlessflame: in this thread, you mentioned about social groups can be a place for free discussion, but those are unknown to most new member in the forum (i only know about their existence after 2 month in the forum when viewing a user profile and took me some more time to know the link to social group page hidden in the community tab). so i think every series that have a subforum should have a thread list all social groups related to the series like how myanimelist have a section in the anime page list all club related to it.
Hmm... in general I think this idea is pretty good. The only thing I'm wondering about is should there be any criteria before a club gets listed? Like, if anybody just creates a club at random, can it immediately be listed, or do we need to have something for it to qualify? Also, do we care if multiple people create clubs about the same exact topic, and just list them all? Would we just let each club owner post their own club details, but have some restrictions on what they can post? I don't want to turn this into some sort of bureaucratic nightmare, but at the same time I'm just trying to think of complications it could cause. Just sort of "thinking out loud" so to speak.


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Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post
Kind of a General Discussion Version 2.0 thread? With a thread start date of shortly after the anime finishes airing?
Just throwing it out there, but what about something like "Post-Airing News and Conversations" as a title? Seems maybe a bit more inviting than "General Discussion", at least.
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Old 2012-02-02, 23:53   Link #77
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Originally Posted by relentlessflame View Post

Just throwing it out there, but what about something like "Post-Airing News and Conversations" as a title? Seems maybe a bit more inviting than "General Discussion", at least.
Sounds good to me! Yes, I agree that it is more inviting.
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Old 2012-02-03, 00:52   Link #78
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Originally Posted by relentlessflame View Post
The only thing I'm wondering about is should there be any criteria before a club gets listed? Like, if anybody just creates a club at random, can it immediately be listed, or do we need to have something for it to qualify?
i think if the club fit the Categorize it in, then it qualified.

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Originally Posted by relentlessflame View Post
Also, do we care if multiple people create clubs about the same exact topic, and just list them all?
list the one created earlier or the most popular

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Originally Posted by relentlessflame View Post
Would we just let each club owner post their own club details, but have some restrictions on what they can post?
i don't think there need any restrictions if the club not break the forum rule
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Old 2012-02-03, 20:09   Link #79
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I'm mostly a general chat poster, where the ability to create threads has been retained all along. I'm not really one to post threads myself, but I have noticed when I do make my minor ventures into other anime sections, such as the Fate/series subforum, some of the issues brought up here seem legitimate.

When one opens up a particular episode thread, you'll find multiple tangents being discussed at once, which I understand is unavoidable and has always happened, but I feel the restrictions on thread creation certainly exacerbate this occurrence. The reasons are two fold, first, there are simply less threads to choose from, so people are more likely to lump unrelated thoughts/ideas into the less numerous, more massive threads. I can only speak for myself, but I'm not always able to give much commentary on an individual episode, and might feel too overwhelmed by all the white noise in the general thread for the series. Optimally, I'd like to peruse through a list of interesting thread ideas people have come up with, having to do with any topic in the series. Just reading those unique ideas can spark the desire to pitch in my thoughts, whereas the uninspiring "Episode 15 thread" with ten-twenty ongoing tangents of discussion, might kill my desire to say anything.

Secondly, and perhaps it's a bit too in-depth an analyzation on my part, but I don't think it's far-fetched to suggest the current system of requesting new threads and providing a rationale for their creation is too much work for most. I know if I had an idea for a thread, I'd just take the lazy route under the current system and instead of requesting it, I'd bring it up as a new tangent in the episode thread, or some other generic thread. It's not that requesting a thread is a herculean task of difficulty, but it's just difficult enough, I'd venture, to stop many vibrant discussion topics from coming into fruition. And while you can still get some good conversation in the more generic, all-encompassing threads, it's certainly not as conducive to concise, focused discussion as simply introducing your tangent as it's own thread.

Now, I'm not a frequent user of the anime section, so don't take this as a criticism - I think you guys should do whatever gives you the least amount of work, since you're volunteering your time without getting paid. Just tossing out my idea, since I have thought about this in the past when using the site.

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Originally Posted by relentlessflame View Post
Hmm... in general I think this idea is pretty good. The only thing I'm wondering about is should there be any criteria before a club gets listed? Like, if anybody just creates a club at random, can it immediately be listed, or do we need to have something for it to qualify? Also, do we care if multiple people create clubs about the same exact topic, and just list them all? Would we just let each club owner post their own club details, but have some restrictions on what they can post? I don't want to turn this into some sort of bureaucratic nightmare, but at the same time I'm just trying to think of complications it could cause. Just sort of "thinking out loud" so to speak.
Or you could have an 'official club' created by a moderator for each series, which would be displayed prominently in the series' subforum.

Last edited by ChainLegacy; 2012-02-03 at 20:20.
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Old 2012-02-05, 12:10   Link #80
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Well there is no point in opening a new thread for insignificant issues in my opinion, especially if you look at the pointless threads in other forums like mentioned by detective-san: mangafox.
Fully agree with that. The way that threads here are presented (for anime that get a sub-forum) look orderly and professional. I've seen forums (won't name them) which allow or otherwise poorly moderated, where users to just create threads - sooner or later there would be whole jungle of duplicate threads. *shudders at the thought

Anyway, there's already a place in sub-forums here on Animesuki for asking new threads to be made. I think that's enough.
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