ForumsThe TavernWhat it Takes to Become a Moderator (page 1):

589 200369
cormyn
offline
cormyn
2,908 posts
Peasant

Hey everyone,

In my time at Armor Games, I've seen a few new moderators come on board, and every time we promote a user to Moderator status, there's always a flurry of "why wasn't I picked?" or "I think _____ should be a Moderator" or "why is ________ still a moderator" or lots of other questions about what it really takes to be a Moderator on the site.

As of this writing, I have three comments on my profile asking for 'exact' requirements for becoming a Moderator.

I know we have information scattered around the site, but I wanted to sum up briefly a few of the core things we look for in a user in order to be nominated to become a Moderator. Hopefully this will help clear up some of the confusion.

This topic is meant to be informational in nature. I will delete any message containing text which is negative towards our current team, comments suggesting some other user be nominated, replies of "well, I guess I'll never qualify" or anything else off-topic -- even if your message contains other good ideas. This is not the place for *those* discussions.

Also, it should be obvious that this list is NOT complete, because we don't want to give away EVERY detail about what we look for in a moderator. And this list is also subject to change over time, especially when AG3 launches.

--------------

BACKGROUND

We are obviously much more strict in our criteria than other sites, but that's only because we already have the best users out there and we want to be sure that anyone being a Moderator can follow our rules, guidelines, and get along with others.


THE PROCESS

In a nutshell, candidates are presented to the entire Moderator team, and are reviewed thoroughly by an Admin. The Moderator team decides unanimously (the exception being users who are on hiatus/holidays) on whether to accept the user or not; a negative response could either be "this user should never be a moderator" (and give reasons why) or "let's check back in 3-6 months". If an affirmative decision is made, an Admin user will Email the user asking if they'll accept the role and responsibilities. If the user accepts, the Admin user will promote them to become a probationary Moderator. We guide probationary Moderators for a little while and then release them into the wild.


HOW WE FIND USERS

There are two ways we find potential nominees.

First and foremost is by daily interactions within the forums or user profile comments. That's not to say that ONLY &quotopular" people will get nominated, but we're not likely to nominate someone that nobody really knows. We've recently passed on a half dozen users because none of us really know them as individuals. We'll start paying more attention to them now, of course.

The second method we use is a piece of software I wrote which takes some of the quantifiable criteria mentioned below and scans our database looking for users who qualify. Generally, this software finds HUNDREDS of users, and then starts disqualifying them based on other factors. Once it reports the users to me, I examine the user profiles, and then present a final list of nominees to the Moderator team. Candidates to whom the Moderator team give a definitive 'no way, never', we add to a 'skip' list so the software won't even look at them next time. There's a second "skip list" for users we want to check back on in a few months.

The last scan I did, which resulted in Freakenstein being added to the team, found almost 400 users, filtered them down to less than a dozen, and we were left with one definite 'yes' (Freakenstein), and a handful of "let's check back later" candidates (who we will not name).


SOME OF THE CRITERIA WE LOOK FOR

To be considered as a Moderator nominee, here are SOME of the things we look for. This list is not complete and is subject to change at any time without notice. We may or may not alter this forum posting to describe new or changed criteria. Also, meeting all of this criteria doesn't guarantee anything, because the rest of the Moderator team still has to vote on accepting you into our small team.

- You obviously need to have an excellent understanding of our Terms and Conditions for being on the site, and know the Rules & Guidelines for both the forums and game/user comments. And you follow them yourself.

- You need to stay up to date on things happening at Armor Games, especially with Armor Games v3 coming out later this summer. Users who have been in the beta since late last year will get extra points.

- You need to have an exceptional grasp of the English language (excellent spelling and grammar) but being fluent in one other language for support purposes may help your chances. You don't need to be an English professor, but 1337-speaking / textmsg writing styles, or writing styles which are difficult to read/understand will disqualify you.

- You need to be able to take criticism, from Admins, other Moderators, and especially other users. And you need to humbly accept this criticism when it's "constructive", or learn when it's "destructive" and deal with it accordingly without losing your cool.

- You need to be at LEAST 18 years of age; if you don't share your birth date on your profile (at least the year and month), you'll never even show up on our radar. And we have backups of our user data, so don't go changing your profile birth date trying to cheat the system -- we'll ask for proof.

- You need to have been an active, consistent member of the site for a minimum of 12-18 months. Big gaps in your login/posting history will generally reset this timer.

- You must be a genuinely helpful person within several forums. We watch where you post, how frequently you post, how many times you've posted in each forum, whether you're posting just to jump in on the conversation or genuinely getting involved in the topic, etc.

- We look for well-rounded users who also have good communication via user comments, but not to an excessive (spammy) degree. As such, users who carry on really long conversations back and forth (technically against our rules) will probably get passed on.

- We look for a minimum participation level from forum posts AND user comments. We need to see that you don't just focus on one type of commenting. Obviously we won't quantify these "minimum" values, because we don't want users trying to cheat the system.

- We look for a minimum number of rated games and game comments, and *recent* game ratings and comments, because we need to know you're actually playing the games and having fun too, not just hanging out in the forums 95% of the time. If you never participate in game comments, how will you recognize bad game comments versus merit-worthy comments?

- You must not have excessive quantities of user/game comments removed as spam. "Excessive" is subjective, but we can see how many comments you've had deleted, and we weigh that as a ratio against your remaining active comments.

- Generally, we tell users that even a single temporary ban will disqualify you. A temp-ban for flaming, spamming, harassment, fighting, racial comments, excessive swearing, or blatant rule breaking like hacking will certainly disqualify you. But if the temp-ban happened a long time ago (more than a year and a half), while we never "expunge" them from your history, we may treat them lighter than if your temp-ban was more recent.


WHAT DO WE EXPECT FROM OUR MODERATORS

New Moderators will start out working on cleaning up game comments and forum posts, and looking for merit-worthy game comments. They'll also continue to be helpful in the forums and via user comments to offer help and support, making sure other users are aware of the rules of the web site (and follow them).

We understand that life throws a curve-ball now and then, and while we certainly don't expect Moderators to be on the site every single day, we do expect that you're on the site several times per week. We also expect Moderators to take a break/holiday from time to time. This isn't a paid job, you're doing it for free, so don't feel guilty if you need to step away for a little while. Excessive absences may get you demoted back to regular user status.

And of course, you can always turn us down if you don't want to be on the team, and you can leave the team at any time as well.

----------------

Hopefully that helps clear up some of the confusion about what kind of users we look for as Moderators.

Let the discussion begin.

  • 589 Replies
Rapyion
offline
Rapyion
2,271 posts
Shepherd

So, do Moderators get, like paid for being one? I know Administrators do.

acmed
offline
acmed
3,525 posts
Peasant

So, do Moderators get, like paid for being one?


They're volunteers of the community. Admins are known for being paid employees for also programming the site. It's a job.
keola15
online
keola15
1 posts
Bard

What is the shortest amount of time that can elapse?

daleks
offline
daleks
3,787 posts
Lord

What is the shortest amount of time that can elapse?


To be a moderator? It is not about time just involvement and experience.
GhostOfMatrix
offline
GhostOfMatrix
15,525 posts
Constable

What is the shortest amount of time that can elapse?

Zophia was modded in four months when she came here. I'm sure a few others were modded in about two-four months in '08. Nowadays, it probably takes about a year or two of being here to even get nominated and considered.
JalapenoFez
offline
JalapenoFez
1,065 posts
Shepherd

How many moderators are in AG at the moment?

Freakenstein
offline
Freakenstein
9,554 posts
Bard

The About page knows all! There are currently 9 active mods, but I'm either the 12th or the 13th actually modded.

Roger721
offline
Roger721
1,107 posts
Peasant

Cormy wrote:
- You need to have an exceptional grasp of the English language (excellent spelling and grammar) but being fluent in one other language for support purposes may help your chances


What are the "support purposes"? Isn't against the forum rules post in another language than english?
ProfessorOak
offline
ProfessorOak
996 posts
Peasant

Isn't against the forum rules post in another language than english?


Yes, but it isn't against the rules if you are speaking in another language on a person's profile that also speaks the language.
Gantic
online
Gantic
11,847 posts
King

What are the "support purposes"? Isn't against the forum rules post in another language than english?


It means you need to be able to understand and communicate in English clearly to help others and/or enforce the rules.

Knowing English and using English well aren't the same thing. Not all users of the site can write in English as clearly as they can in their native languages. A moderator who is fluent or adequate in a language other than English would be very helpful here.
MattEmAngel
offline
MattEmAngel
7,865 posts
Bard

Is a moderator awarded any small Armor Games bonuses, such as an Armatar that's unavailable to other users? If not, you may want to consider that. It might cut down on the immature and rambling discussions on the forums knowing that users could get something special for being good. Although, I have to admit, the colored text is clever. Just a thought.
-Angel

Maverick4
offline
Maverick4
6,815 posts
Shepherd

Moderators don't get any 'erks' like you listed, just Moderator abilities, a ban hammer, and their own forum with the Administrators. Being a moderator is important enough to not warrant any special bonuses. They are volonteers, after all.

The colored text is to identify them as moderators, but it does look pretty cool.

Patrick2011
offline
Patrick2011
12,358 posts
Templar

Moderators don't get any 'erks' like you listed, just Moderator abilities, a ban hammer, and their own forum with the Administrators. Being a moderator is important enough to not warrant any special bonuses. They are volonteers, after all.

The colored text is to identify them as moderators, but it does look pretty cool.


Correct, but you never see a banhammer on AG unless an image of one is posted. The banhammer is really just a moderator's ability to temp-ban users.
MattEmAngel
offline
MattEmAngel
7,865 posts
Bard

Another quick question: I've noticed that the Moderators are not all very high ranked. So my question is, is there a point in ranking up once you've been promoted to Moderator? I suspect it would be impossible to gain any Merit APs, and you would spend a majority of your time defending the forums and discussion instead of rating and commenting on games. So, would you be able to continue being promoted, or is there no point in doing so once you become a Moderator, or even Admin?
-Angel

Sonatavarius
offline
Sonatavarius
1,324 posts
Blacksmith

Gantic has 90 merits. I would imagine that he just can't merit himself. The ranking system is just for those who like to know that they've contributed more than other members to the site. I don't think that the defense of the forum wall from the spammers who siege it is as constant a fight as you'd think. The mods can work towards being Gold Kings and Queens just like the rest of us if that's what they're trying to do. I'm sure they all still play the games that they get curious about.

The moderators don't necessarily have to be the most active users on the site. They are the ones that the administration and other moderators thought were active enough, mature enough, and dedicated enough to give moderator powers.

You only become an admin if you are a payed employee of AG. Which means, you would be developing games and/or maintaining/developing the actual site.

Showing 31-45 of 589