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  #21  
Old 11-15-2010, 08:33 AM
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Porteplume Porteplume is offline
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Originally Posted by Angshu View Post
I did not quite understand the ‘Marine” issue which according to Viviane was " a mouse becoming an elephant and partly because of the members giving each other wrong infos.”. If this be the case, I think its even more fair that the things come out in the open so that the ‘correct’ perspective is represented! What was the wrong infos which were flowing between the members, which resulted in their decision to leave the site?
Especially the fact that people said to each other that Marine was disabled for ever.
And also that Clio read her ban was for one year till 1st of November 2011 instead of : 01-11-2011 which means: 11th of January 2011. (two months)
That last was a mistake and Clio is abled again.

Surtout le fait que beaucoup pensaient que Marine était bannie pour toujours.
Et aussi l'interprétation de Clio d'une date écrite en anglais: 01-11-2011 qui veut dire 11 janvier 2011 et non pas 1er novembre 2011.
Ce dernier ban a été retiré, c'était une erreur de notre part.

Last edited by Porteplume; 11-15-2010 at 08:38 AM. Reason: Translation/Traduction Anglais/français
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  #22  
Old 11-15-2010, 01:01 PM
macondo macondo is offline
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Originally Posted by Dashab View Post
Hello everyone,
This site functions as a community, which is one of the reasons we are drawn to it, but this fact has to be taken into account in the rules that govern it / the administration of it. In this case, I am afraid, answering the questions of individual members by e-mail will not suffice to put things on the right track. A public explanation of the issues that Anghsu named, as to why critiques were altered, threads deleted etc., is needed to calm heated tempers and bring in fresh air.
.....

Please let us all endeavour in good faith to rescue as many of them as possible and try to bring them back by showing them that the things that bothered them are being worked on.
Dasha
I'd agree with all of that, Dasha! Fair points. Moderators have been bothered by a few things too!

I think Viviane and Keith should have some support in what they have been doing. Paulo, Angshu, Romana, Iain, Dasha and others deserve support too, and thanks for their very helpful contributions. I think the tone of the dialogue is changing, n'est-ce-pas?

First, let me explain that I have no idea why I am now a 'Super Moderator'! Whatever that means. It makes me cringe. I thought I was just a humble 'TE Moderator' until a few days ago. I'm certainly not 'Super' in any way, and my position amongst the Moderators is a 'junior' position, if you ask me! I was asked to give it a try several months ago. Since then I have found the other Moderators to be very reasonable and fair people who are as dedicated to TE as anyone else, and want it to work according to the original vision, not some intoxication with 'power'. Where doubt exists, we must give the member the benefit of that doubt, Viviane always reminds us. I think the suggestion that Moderators are consumed by 'power' is absurd. No one, absolutely no one, wants to 'destroy' Trek Earth! But I can imagine how anger or a sense of injustice might lead to those thoughts.

Second, I am the only moderator living in Australia at the moment. Which means that everything has already passed by when I get to my computer. There are 10 hours between Western Europe and Melbourne during our Summer time period, and nearly everything seems to happen on TE while I'm asleep or at work! Often it's hard to work out what has been going on, even through the Moderators' forum. This last weekend I never really did find out exactly what happened with Marine, although I could see the reaction developing later among some members, of course. I could see how matters were getting out of control and facts were getting lost. Yes, we Moderators may have acted too hastily; members may have been provocative in their anger. I was rather shocked by the jigsaw puzzle I was able to (almost) put together on Saturday afternoon in Melbourne.

It's very difficult, as people have recognised, to implement a set of rules ('Terms of Service') for a huge membership. Members draw different things from TE and enjoy it in different ways. Each person has his or her own interests and styles of photography, reasons for being here, and so on, despite the essential Travel orientation of the site. There are bound to be some disputes when the TOS are implemented, and moderators are bound to make mistakes. Members are bound to forget the TOS, if they know them. Misunderstandings can arise when the Moderators' communication is by means of their forum, and there are so many different photos and notes passing by in the gallery that it can be almost impossible interpreting the TOS with 100% consistency or 100% correctness. There's no point in pretending. But Keith is right, we have been deliberately trying to be more consistent, which means much more observation of photos in the gallery. And why not? After all, one of the most common complaints about photo removals has been that the moderators allowed similar or 'worse' examples of something to stay on the site. The only reply to that has been that the moderators can't possibly view every photo that is uploaded, and that individuals may not use inconsistency as a justification for breaking rules. We have been trying to view more photos and to interpret the current TOS faithfully.

So, we have tried to be more consistent, believing that is what members want. We've also tried to achieve better note-writing by imposing a minimum of 40 characters. To be honest, this may not have worked very well, as enforcing it has become quite difficult. Thousands of new members have joined this year and it seems many have not read or understood the TOS - that may be partly the fault of the TOS or the way they are displayed! Thus, we see 40 character notes stating only the same things that you can read in the title or the photo information box. We also see many dashes and other non-alphabetic characters. Some experienced members also write notes that say virtually nothing. The notes are as important as the photos to many of us. It's not an unreasonable obligation upon a member, since languages other than English, French and Spanish are acceptable.

The other thing that has angered some is the removal of a photo because it 'should be on Trek Lens or Trek Nature'. Perhaps the existence of other Trek sites for close-ups of common objects and flowers and all other kinds of photos both creative and experimental, even heavily processed or elaborately framed, should be publicised better on the site. On TE, some close-ups and exotic flowers are accepted if shown within a wider context and/or accompanied by an informative note about the subject and the location.

I can see that I've rambled on too much already. I know I haven't contributed anything to an understanding of the current 'disturbance', I've merely mentioned it in passing. I mainly wished to say that I don't want TE to become another Flickr, a repository for millions of family snaps. TE isn't a repository, it's a trek. Even the other good quality photo sites have a different purpose and a different modus operandi from TE. This is the only one of its kind; it's unique. It's photographs that were taken by travellers, and photos that allow one to 'travel' while sitting in front of one's computer screen. I think everyone can see the value of Adam's original vision and the Terms of Service that try to preserve that vision as a thread that ties together 100,000 members and 1 million photos. Sure, the TOS are imperfect; let's hope they are adaptable and that we are adaptable. I also hope that those who stated their intention to leave reconsider it.

Meanwhile, the photos are still floating past in the moving gallery.
By the way, how many have seen the first photo uploaded by Adam when he started the site in 2002?
http://www.trekearth.com/gallery/Asia/Japan/photo1.htm
Now, I wonder if it's within the TOS...... ?
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  #23  
Old 11-15-2010, 03:23 PM
iainsp iainsp is offline
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Greetings all,

Thank you all for the debate - which is being conducted in a wonderful spirit - amd thank you to Viviane, Keith and Andrew for giving us some insight as to how the moderation team does its work. We have certainly at least found some grounds where we can agree to disagree in a more harmonious fashion than on Friday.

One for the technical team - which I do recall being mentioned somewhere recently on TE: The home page could do with some work to ensure that is supports the modern ToS. I can understand the logic of a statute of limitiation on deletions, and not wanting to delete photographs which were accepted years ago. But, however gradually, I would like to think there was some work being put in to the home page such that eventually we will not have a "Featured Photographer" whose work consists of close-ups of flowers, or a theme which openly advertises that is about pets and cats.

And for my fellow posters, perhaps the key to survival here is to write a nice long note, that isn't just copied from wikipedia. If we are doing more than just dumping our holiday snaps then there are times when we will be pushing the boundaries of what people will accept as a travel shot - but that is the nature of art, not everyone will agree with your assertion that what you are doing is art in the context that they understand or wish to promote the term.

To pick an example from my own gallery, when I published Green into Blue, I knew that I was pushing the boundaries of the TE ToS, and that my close up may get deleted.
http://www.trekearth.com/gallery/Sou...oto1252880.htm
I can defend its status as a genuine travel photograph (to me), but I have to accept that others may not agree with me. I do like to think that what has saved me is that I can get quite verbose with my notes (or the moderators haven't seen it yet, which could be a bit of a pain when it disappears ).

I guess TE is not for every shot - and even if TE do not like Green into Blue and can find other sites that do. Which does not mean I will be leaving TE in a hurry, just because the don't think all my work is for them.

regards, and apologies for the even-more-verbal-diarrhoea;

Iain
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  #24  
Old 11-15-2010, 04:10 PM
Angshu Angshu is offline
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Andrew, Viviane & of course Iain

Thanks for the continued effort in clearing up the 'toxicity' prevailing in TE now. As I count now, more & more members seem to be quitting...the number keeps on growing....I notice 3 very senior & distinguished members post their last photo today...Sad! Bad for all of us who want to continue in this site, because we would miss their excellent posts. But at the end of the day it is they who decide whether to remain in TE or not!

One disturbing thought continues for me & which is still unanswered was, we seem to be having instances of modification of members’ critiques (example : Thread of member 'Ricx') ! Why on earth would a critique be modified? I don’t remember such things happen in the past…don’t you think this goes against the spirit of freedom?

Best,
Angshuman
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  #25  
Old 11-15-2010, 04:20 PM
saxo042 saxo042 is offline
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Default TE should be for fun!

It is indeed very sad to read that so many members are leaving the community, after feeling badly treated by the TE moderators. I have also had pictures and critiques deleted, and I have felt as insulted as anybody else.

But if TE is a commercial enterprise, I believe the owner should take more care of their product. If they want to sell advertisment space, they surely need viewers. But I see that the number of uploads per day, is rapidly decreasing. To peak was at March 2007 with around 800 uploads per day. Now there are about 250 uploads per day.

So, in my usually humble opinion, TE must make some changes. The sooner the better!

Do not insult grown up members with ridiculous actions like banning and deletions etc. Revise the TOS, don´t be so constraint about flower close-ups, elaborate frames, IR photos, excessive thanks and so on. Do these things really matter in the long run? Allow more freedom for the members! TE should be for fun, a pleasant hobby for adults!

Reinstall all deleted photos again, they are still there (like this one), with all the critiques that were already given.
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  #26  
Old 11-15-2010, 07:11 PM
Keitht Keitht is offline
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Originally Posted by saxo042 View Post
So, in my usually humble opinion, TE must make some changes. The sooner the better!

Do not insult grown up members with ridiculous actions like banning and deletions etc. Revise the TOS, don´t be so constraint about flower close-ups, elaborate frames, IR photos, excessive thanks and so on. Do these things really matter in the long run? Allow more freedom for the members! TE should be for fun, a pleasant hobby for adults!

Reinstall all deleted photos again,
I think the vast majority of people believe the TOS are in need of revision, but that is not the same as throwing all the rules away and letting everybody post anything they want. It could also be argued that there is little point in revising the TOS if members are unable to work within the current ones, which for the most part are unchanged in several years.
Assuming a decision is taken to revise the TOS, it will still take time for the new TOS to be formulated and published. Until that time don't we all have a responsibility to stay within the current rules?

To return to the reason for the existence of TE in the first place - its mission statement is "Learning about the world through photography". Close up images without meaningful notes do not fulfil that very basic brief. The reason for the 'excessive thanks' rule is actually very simple - they push other topics out of sight in the Photo forum. There is an assumption that people appreciate the feedback they get so there isn't a need to thank each individual critiquer. Members really do have to ignore repeated requests not to post multiple 'Thank You' messages before action is taken against them.

I've said on numerous occasions that I believe many members aren't even aware of the TOS, and that is in part down to the fact that they are buried in the bowels of the site and only accessible through numerous links. It's true that there is a link to the TOS on the 'Upload Photo' page but even that isn't exactly prominent in my opinion.

Reinstatement of all deleted photos simply isn't going to happen. There is a Review Request process if members believe an image has been wrongly removed, and many images have been reinstated. Many others however simply have no place here - that's why TrekLens was created. It is the place where pretty much anything can be posted, so long as it isn't obscene or otherwise offensive. Again, that site needs to be far more heavily promoted on TE than is currently the case.

Picking up on a point raised by another member - public discussion of the reason for suspensions / bans. That itself could create problems. It's one thing for a person whose posting privileges have been suspended, to ask why, it's another matter altogether when 3rd parties start to speculate, often spectacularly off the mark, and expect to have the reason given to them in open forum.

I genuinely believe that the furthest we should go is to say when speculation is totally wrong, although even that can lead to potential reasons being given and discounted until the answer is out there by a process of elimination.

What does please me greatly is the carefully considered contributions being posted both in this thread and the 'Newish member inviting debate' thread started by Iain. We probably won't agree on all aspects all the time, but it's far better to listen to each other than to 'throw the toys out of the pram' to us an English expression. Note - that's true for all participants, whether we are ordinary members or members with moderator duties. It is worth remembering that the mods are all posting members of the site too.
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  #27  
Old 11-15-2010, 08:32 PM
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Porteplume Porteplume is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by saxo042 View Post
Do not insult grown up members with ridiculous actions like banning and deletions etc. Revise the TOS, don´t be so constraint about flower close-ups, elaborate frames, IR photos, excessive thanks and so on. Do these things really matter in the long run? Allow more freedom for the members! TE should be for fun, a pleasant hobby for adults!

Reinstall all deleted photos again, they are still there (like this one), with all the critiques that were already given.
Sorry saxo042,

I have really no idea WHAT I can answer here because I've already written the answers in my intro for this thread.

Quote:
...don´t be so constraint about flower close-ups, elaborate frames, IR photos, excessive thanks and so on. Do these things really matter in the long run? Allow more freedom for the members!
Adam created a fantastic site for these ones : www.treklens.com

Quoting a TE member, kajenn:

As I see it, we have the TE rules on what, when and how to post our photos, in order to prevent this site from becoming "just another place to dump your holiday snaps".

That's what makes TE so special. Take away those rules, and what do we get? Right! Just another......
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  #28  
Old 11-15-2010, 08:37 PM
clio clio is offline
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Hi, this is Clio ...
I would like to know why and by whom I was banned two months, because I still have no reason. If it is a mistake, how it is possible that Marine has also been banned by mistake two days before ? For eternity... also in error ?
Karine still wants to know why she was banned 1 month. Is it also a mistake?
Thank you for your reply which we think is important because we leave the site just because we had no answers.


Coucou, c'est moi Clio...
Je voudrais intervenir pour savoir pourquoi et par qui j'ai été bannie 2 mois, car je n'ai toujours pas la raison. Si c'est une erreur, comment se fait-il que Marine ait été bannie également par erreur 2 jours avant pour l'éternité aussi par erreur. Et Karine voudrait toujours savoir pourquoi elle a été bannie 1 mois. Est-ce que c'est aussi une erreur?
Merci de votre réponse qui nous paraît importante parce que nous quittons le site justement parce que nous n'avons pas eu de réponses.
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  #29  
Old 11-15-2010, 09:08 PM
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Porteplume Porteplume is offline
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Hi, this is Clio ...
I would like to know why and by whom I was banned two months, because I still have no reason. If it is a mistake, how it is possible that Marine has also been banned by mistake two days before ? For eternity... also in error ?
Karine still wants to know why she was banned 1 month. Is it also a mistake?
Thank you for your reply which we think is important because we leave the site just because we had no answers.
Hi Clio, you are NOT banned at all anymore. KLB had written to a wrong @address, and yes a same mistake with the ban tool has been made twice by a moderator who did not know how to handle yet.

Quote:
Coucou, c'est moi Clio...
Je voudrais intervenir pour savoir pourquoi et par qui j'ai été bannie 2 mois, car je n'ai toujours pas la raison. Si c'est une erreur, comment se fait-il que Marine ait été bannie également par erreur 2 jours avant pour l'éternité aussi par erreur. Et Karine voudrait toujours savoir pourquoi elle a été bannie 1 mois. Est-ce que c'est aussi une erreur?
Merci de votre réponse qui nous paraît importante parce que nous quittons le site justement parce que nous n'avons pas eu de réponses.
Bonjour Clio,
Votre ban n'a pas duré plus de qq. heures, vous n'êtes pas bannie.
KLB a utilisé une adresse email erronée.
Et oui, en effet, une faute d'utilisation des outils de modération a été faite deux fois de suite par un membre du team qui ne savait pas encore les utiliser à bon escient.
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  #30  
Old 11-15-2010, 09:10 PM
Vato_Law Vato_Law is offline
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To Viviane, Keith and Andrew

Good night for the 3 of you and for the rest of the persons involved on this thread.

I already thanked yesterday but I wish to do it again to the 3 of you for showing up and discuss which was the purpose of my thread not causing any wave of contestation.

From all the answers i got here the only thing that I can contest is preciselly the first answer Viviane gave me, not on the context that the moderator might have followed the rules too strictly but what followed (photo removed, critiques removed, and I even got a message at the entrance of the forums saying "you are banned for 2 days for "throwing troubles" the ban was supposed to have action until today).

Question: if you had a thread removed and then this serie of events during the whole day what would be your thoughts about that? would you accept it with ease?

Finally I would just regret this thread only came so late and because of this so many members left the site. What I was trying to prevent with my initial thread, even if I was harsh with some questions, was precisely this.
Another thing that many persons who doesn't come here and discuss with us, which I regret, are saying that what matters is photography. Could be right, but maybe they forget that one of the biggest qualities of this site is that many friendships were created along with the participation and meetings organized all around the world, and maybe if you see something you consider unfair being done to someone you care for, you'll react (or not) depending on the persons.
This "wave" of members leaving might be just an hint of what I say above...

About the issue of "changing the rules", don't think there's any need, just some more sensivity on their application in some cases (not an acusation to someone in particular).

Thanks to all who took the time to participate here, and specially to Viviane, Keith and Andrew for showing up and raise the voice and answering the questions we were raising.

Paulo
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