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Author Topic: The Brains behind RPG Net Shannon Appelcline Interviewed  (Read 9571 times)

Dan Davenport

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The Brains behind RPG Net Shannon Appelcline Interviewed
« Reply #45 on: November 17, 2019, 08:53:15 PM »
Quote from: Kyle Aaron;1113440
Tangency. Misc. Off Topic. The Off Topic section is always what causes the drama on a discussion forum, always. It attracts people with no interest in the topic of the site, and becomes larger than the rest combined, and arguments ensue, and rules must be made, and rules must be policed, and then rules argued over, and so on. Which means new mods.

And some of the new mods will be people who were enthusiastic participants in that off topic section, and who themselves have no interest in the topic of the site, so that if you suggest simply binning the section, they defend it hysterically. And the owners of the site see the viewcounts and get terrified of losing that, even though the people in the off topic section never buy anything.

As the off topic grows to absorb the entire site, people actually interested in the topic wander in, look around, and then leave. And viewcounts to the site decline, so that any suggestion of binning off topic is more hysterically reacted to. "But we're already declining!"

And so it goes on.


Having seen this process from the inside, I have to say that your analysis is entirely correct.

Back in the day, Tangency made some kind of sense as a sewer to drain off the off-topic posts that were clogging up the on-topic section. Unfortunately, there was no way to flush the sewer, and the backlog of filth flooded the whole damn site with political advocacy and labyrinthine rules and regulations.
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David Johansen

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The Brains behind RPG Net Shannon Appelcline Interviewed
« Reply #46 on: November 17, 2019, 10:10:57 PM »
Media discussion should have stayed in open.  Just try to tie it back to the gaming thing and it's fine.  I'm okay with media where it is in its own forum but really it gets rid of any useful media and gaming type discussion.
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sureshot

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The Brains behind RPG Net Shannon Appelcline Interviewed
« Reply #47 on: November 17, 2019, 11:25:51 PM »
Quote from: Dan Davenport;1114146
Back in the day, Tangency made some kind of sense as a sewer to drain off the off-topic posts that were clogging up the on-topic section. Unfortunately, there was no way to flush the sewer, and the backlog of filth flooded the whole damn site with political advocacy and labyrinthine rules and regulations.

It's not helped that the Mods became power hungry, amoral suddenly Woke tyrants either. The best analogy I have is the guards not only letting the inmates run the asylum they joined the inmates. Tha or many were simply social chameleons bidding their time just waiting to be put in a position of power. Once in power revealed their true natures. It's like some posters who come here starting threads and wanting validation because of something that happened at another forum or in real life. Then two weeks later return claiming that this place is shit, we are all Alt-Reich jerks and this forum is the worst EVER!. While totally ignoring the how truly terrible other places like the TBP. Fortunately the social chameleons that used to come here either left or are bidding their time just waiting to return.

Kyle Aaron

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The Brains behind RPG Net Shannon Appelcline Interviewed
« Reply #48 on: November 18, 2019, 12:47:04 AM »
Quote from: sureshot;1114156
It's not helped that the Mods became power hungry, amoral suddenly Woke tyrants either.
If it'd not been woke philosophy, it would have been something else.

All the drama of an Off Topic section leads to people hitting the report button for anything and everything, which begs for rules, which have gaps in them so are followed by rulings, and the tiniest ideological slant one way causes lots of its supporters to flood in from across the internet, dragging it further that way, and so on.

It could as easily have been communist or fascist or christian or whatever. On rpg.net it's wokesterism, on bodybuilding.com it's 8chan lite, and so on. Once an Off Topic section was allowed to dominate the site, some ideology or other was bound to take control. That's just the nature of online discourse.

An Off Topic section works alright here because it's a minority of the site as a whole, and it's tightly controlled by arbitrary whim. If it were allowed to grow it'd dominate the site and we'd become as retarded as rpg.net or bodybuilding.com, just with a different ideological slant.

If two people both like topic X, but argue over Y, then the likelihood of their getting along depends on how much they talk about X vs Y. I have gaming friends with whom I would not get along with terribly well if we talked about non-gaming subjects. Indeed, we might need a moderator for our discussions, and rules, lest we come to blows. When we stick to gaming we're fine.

Likewise fitness and other topics I'm interested in. Which is why any Off Topic section being allowed to dominate a discussion forum will ultimately fuck it all up. We're brought together by our love of gaming, and pushed apart by other things: which should we focus on discussions on?

It's not the wokesterism, as retarded as that is. It's having Off Topic sections dominate things. It never goes well. Never.

Note: I have been removed as a mod at bodybuilding.com. No reason was given, but I had previously clashed with the admins (who moaned self-pityingly just as much as Applecline et al) saying that really we'd be better off getting rid of the Misc (off topic) section, which probably didn't help. Who's left to mod? Those in favour of the Misc, and those who swing alt-right. And so the site continues on its journey to being 8chan lite.

Being a moderator is not a difficult job, but you can make it more difficult for yourself than it need be by letting your Off Topic section dominate the site.
« Last Edit: November 18, 2019, 12:57:46 AM by Kyle Aaron »

Omega

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The Brains behind RPG Net Shannon Appelcline Interviewed
« Reply #49 on: November 18, 2019, 06:40:23 AM »
Quote from: sureshot;1114156
It's not helped that the Mods became power hungry, amoral suddenly Woke tyrants either. The best analogy I have is the guards not only letting the inmates run the asylum they joined the inmates. Tha or many were simply social chameleons bidding their time just waiting to be put in a position of power. Once in power revealed their true natures. It's like some posters who come here starting threads and wanting validation because of something that happened at another forum or in real life. Then two weeks later return claiming that this place is shit, we are all Alt-Reich jerks and this forum is the worst EVER!. While totally ignoring the how truly terrible other places like the TBP. Fortunately the social chameleons that used to come here either left or are bidding their time just waiting to return.

Ive seen this on alot of fora and non-fora groups too. It usually starts because the real admin of the site don't want to admin and start appointing others to do it. And nigh invariably they for some crackheaded reason give these people near total power over the fora and the ability to appoint others mods. It tends to go to hell within a year of that. Sometimes faster. Sometimes slower. And every damn time the admin respond to problems and rampant abuse with "its not my problem!" The fuck it isnt your problem. You run the site and these moderators are ruining it!

As for RPG.net. I think if Shannon gave the axe to tangency, and the worst of the mods, and laid down some real rules of conduct that weren't agenda driven. The fora might rise up again.

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The Brains behind RPG Net Shannon Appelcline Interviewed
« Reply #50 on: November 18, 2019, 10:21:18 PM »
Quote from: Kyle Aaron;1114159
If it'd not been woke philosophy, it would have been something else.
Good analysis. I think you really have something here.
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Snark Knight

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The Brains behind RPG Net Shannon Appelcline Interviewed
« Reply #51 on: November 20, 2019, 06:13:55 PM »
Quote from: Omega;1114169
Ive seen this on alot of fora and non-fora groups too. It usually starts because the real admin of the site don't want to admin and start appointing others to do it. And nigh invariably they for some crackheaded reason give these people near total power over the fora and the ability to appoint others mods. It tends to go to hell within a year of that. Sometimes faster. Sometimes slower. And every damn time the admin respond to problems and rampant abuse with "its not my problem!" The fuck it isnt your problem. You run the site and these moderators are ruining it!

As for RPG.net. I think if Shannon gave the axe to tangency, and the worst of the mods, and laid down some real rules of conduct that weren't agenda driven. The fora might rise up again.

This has absolutely been my experience as well. There was one website I visited for years. The moderation was... relatively hands off. The admin was inactive-ish, so were most mods, but the place was pretty amicable anyway and so it wasn't really an issue. We discussed the topics the site was made for, there was an off-topic forum that occasionally got a bit heated with politics, but there was always a bit of a gentleman's agreement not to let things spill out from there. Again, mods almost never intervened and even the worst cases usually died out pretty quickly when people probably realised they'd be sharing the rest of the forum with these people. Even if two people really went at it in politics, they generally remained amicable elsewhere. Occasionally you got a hardcore shitposter rear their head, but they tended to shut up when they realised none was rising to their bait.

Then the 2016 election really started ramping up. Brexit happened, Trump gained momentum and a certain inactive moderator who hadn't had his powers revoked decided to come back and 'clean up' the site. Hypocrisy started flowing with certain conservative posters finding themselves under much greater scrutiny on non-political parts of the forum regarding rules. Those who wanted to stir trouble noticed this, and said mod obviously picked up a few Camp Followers in the political, off-topic threads (which were only a tiny part of the overall forum). When Trump won, everything went to hell. I really don't like making it sound like "Left-wing democratic bad! Smug comic author reply here!" but it was obvious once certain members realised they had an active moderator in their pocket, they went to town actively trying to drown out perceived conservative members across the forum. Said moderator recruited useful other mods, with a shrug and nod from an admin who I don't think so much supported as genuinely did not care. Needless to say, about half the membership left within a few months and it's been dying a painful death ever since. I think it's lucky to manage about one post every few days now, compared to whole pages of discussions it sparked not three years ago.

Damn shame, because I held that place up as a fantastic example of a community largely policing itself, hands off, with barely any mention or presence of moderators whom you wouldn't even recognise as such for how little they had to (or chose to) invoke their powers to do anything but stop spam bots.
« Last Edit: November 20, 2019, 06:17:43 PM by Snark Knight »

RPGPundit

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The Brains behind RPG Net Shannon Appelcline Interviewed
« Reply #52 on: November 27, 2019, 07:22:01 AM »
Please keep this on topic to the RPG hobby.
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jan paparazzi

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The Brains behind RPG Net Shannon Appelcline Interviewed
« Reply #53 on: November 27, 2019, 03:37:55 PM »
Quote from: Haffrung;1113115
Ameritrash is not a term used by Eurogamers to denigrate Americans. It's a self-deprecating term used by people who play Ameritrash games to describe the games they love. Hundreds of members on BGG proudly display Ameritrash user badges. A website devoted to reviewing and promoting those sorts of games calls itself Fortress Ameritrash.

I've explained this to you five or six times. The only people who think Ameritrash is a slur are humourless snowflakes.

Yep, agreed. Let me explain this for all non-boardgamers. Ameritrash is just another name for highly thematic board games and is mostly used in contradiction with German style board games aka Eurogames.

Ameritrash:

-Highly thematic (usually fantasy/sci-fi/horror)
-Randomness often with dice
-Miniatures
-Direct player conflict aka war
-Player elimination

Eurogames:

-Hardly any theme or pasted on theme (it could be anything else really)
-Solid mechanics with little randomness
-Wooden blocks and cubes for all the bean counting or resource management
-No direct player conflict (the games are quite often trade sims, because of Germany and their history with the wars)
-Victory points (so no player elimination)

Examples Ameritrash: Mansions of Madness, Twilight Imperium, Descent

Examples Eurogames: Puerto Rico, Agricola, Caverna

Nowadays there a lot of games that mix mechanics from both, Ameritrash games that use some Euro mechanics, Eurogames with more theme and some games that fall right in the middle like Eclipse.
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Spinachcat

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The Brains behind RPG Net Shannon Appelcline Interviewed
« Reply #54 on: November 27, 2019, 11:08:12 PM »
The joke is Ameritrash won the boardgame war, most especially on Kickstarter.

As for Shannon CrapApple, its all self-inflicted wounds. Tangency should have been separated from RPG.net a decade ago and made its own non-gaming forum. It might have been a successful venture on its own, but its only poison for RPG.net.


Quote from: JeremyR;1112997
(And also wrong, because many of the really dumb movies, like Battleship, are way more popular overseas than in the US)


I saw that movie at my local El Cheapo 2nd run theater. It was mostly empty, but a dad had brought his young son and his big bunch of friends for a "movie birthday party". The boys were all around 7 or 8 years old and Battleship was their Star Wars. They were so crazy happy watching that flick that it even made it entertaining for me. The little nimrods were bouncing in the lobby afterwards reliving the battle scenes and I can only imagine they're all bummed there wasn't a sequel.


Quote from: Kyle Aaron;1113281
That is, the site I help moderate has had suicides and murders.


1) Pundy, don't let Kyle Aaron moderate here!

2) Kyle, maybe you want to mod RPG.net for a while? Maybe during the 2020 election time?

Ratman_tf

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The Brains behind RPG Net Shannon Appelcline Interviewed
« Reply #55 on: November 27, 2019, 11:37:07 PM »
Quote from: Spinachcat;1115194
I saw that movie at my local El Cheapo 2nd run theater. It was mostly empty, but a dad had brought his young son and his big bunch of friends for a "movie birthday party". The boys were all around 7 or 8 years old and Battleship was their Star Wars. They were so crazy happy watching that flick that it even made it entertaining for me. The little nimrods were bouncing in the lobby afterwards reliving the battle scenes and I can only imagine they're all bummed there wasn't a sequel.

I kinda liked Battleship. It was like a Michael Bay movie (It looks like they were copying his "style") without the intelligence insulting level of stupidity. Just the normal bad-but-fun level of stupidity.
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Kyle Aaron

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The Brains behind RPG Net Shannon Appelcline Interviewed
« Reply #56 on: November 28, 2019, 12:38:43 AM »
Quote from: Spinachcat;1115194
2) Kyle, maybe you want to mod RPG.net for a while? Maybe during the 2020 election time?
No thanks.

Actually, they removed me and banned me after ten years there, the last couple moderating, no reason given. Perhaps I spoke too much in this thread? I'm a big believer in transparency in life, and especially in anything even vaguely resembling governance. That wasn't so popular with the bosses.

jan paparazzi

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The Brains behind RPG Net Shannon Appelcline Interviewed
« Reply #57 on: November 28, 2019, 06:44:12 PM »
Quote from: Spinachcat;1115194
The joke is Ameritrash won the boardgame war, most especially on Kickstarter.


I like Ameritrash better too. Not that I don't like some Eurogames, because I do. But I think most people on this forum are people who will probably like Ameritrash better. If you like fantasy, sci-fi, rpg's, comics etc. your inner nerd will probably be more excited for dungeon crawler's and 4X games and war games with miniatures. Eurogames are more family oriented and therefor less appealing to me.
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HappyDaze

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The Brains behind RPG Net Shannon Appelcline Interviewed
« Reply #58 on: November 28, 2019, 07:34:32 PM »
Quote from: jan paparazzi;1115247
I like Ameritrash better too. Not that I don't like some Eurogames, because I do. But I think most people on this forum are people who will probably like Ameritrash better. If you like fantasy, sci-fi, rpg's, comics etc. your inner nerd will probably be more excited for dungeon crawler's and 4X games and war games with miniatures. Eurogames are more family oriented and therefor less appealing to me.

I've played several Eurogames once, but very few get a second round. As a rule, I do not find them appealing.

Omega

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The Brains behind RPG Net Shannon Appelcline Interviewed
« Reply #59 on: November 29, 2019, 05:07:01 AM »
I figured the usual suspects would chime in to defend its use. Bravo on being both predictable and worthless.