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A Plea For Staff Authority
Hi,

If you don't know me, I wouldn't be surprised. The first server I ever played on was sold off in May of 2015, and since then I have been roaming across Minecraft servers and I haven't gotten attached to any in the same way. However, I have spent a reasonable amount of time on Badlion, and I enjoy some of the gamemodes. Throughout my time on Minecraft, I've been a staff member on several servers. From what I can see, the Badlion staff team has the lowest amount of authority, through being way more transparent than they should be.

The problem I have is with staff reports. Public staff reports. I haven't spent a lot of time posting on the forum, but I genuinely enjoy reading through that section. It's about all I read on the forum sometimes. Badlion handles staff reports in a way I have literally never seen on any other popular server, for a very good reason. It sucks. If a staff member is bad, trust me, the community will know about it and share their thoughts. If a staff member makes a false punishment, trust me, the player will make an appeal and the punishment will be overturned. If a staff member is being rude, trust me, another staff member will see it and bring it up to someone inside the staff team. If someone has a bad reputation for the right reasons, has a lot of false punishments, or has been excessively rude, the Admin Team should proactively get rid of that staff member.

The problem with allowing people to make reports on staff members, is that you open the door for everything that every moderator has done to be called into question by anyone. See the problem yet? If you don't, let's continue. The BIGGEST problem with Badlion is that these are public, which I have literally NEVER HEARD OF besides Badlion. Once again, you are opening the door for the possibility of having to explain everything, which happens. I bet that 99% of the reports are bullshit, about punishments that should be dealt with in appeals, and not substantive abuse reports. That is a lot of wasted time looking for logs, and explaining the rules which can clearly be found. I can't tell you how much I find the staff member replying to the report say something along the lines of "Thanks for wasting my time". Or even worse, comments like this one, which doesn't exactly encourage players to communicate with the staff team more.

The most insane part of this system is that players can call out admins. People who are supposed to be running the server, who have the communities trust. If you don't trust the admins enough to make punishment decisions on their own, don't make them admins. Don't let them make punishments even if they are admins. Monitor their staff actions, but do not put the burden on the community to police your employees. Do you see Google, Apple, or Microsoft allowing users to post publicly on their own website criticizing their leadership team? No. Not in a million years, because it would hurt their brand and authority of their leadership team, as much as it currently hurts Badlion's currently.

This is my rundown on why submitting staff reports is dumb for all levels of the system:
Trials - Should be monitored close enough that the public shouldn't see them make mistakes
Regular Mods - Should be somewhat trusted & monitored by higher-ups
Senior Mods - More trusted & monitored by admins
Community Managers - Why are you letting them represent the Badlion brand if you don't have confidence in their maturity?
Admins - No doubt about trust & monitored by each other, not the community

If you disagree with my assessment of the current system, so be it. I don't think anything I say at this point will convince you otherwise, but feel free to point out any flaw in my argument and I'll try to correct it. The rest of this thread will be suggesting ways to implement a report system for staff, without completely compromising the authority of the staff team. I understand the need for one.

1 - AT THE VERY LEAST
Make the forum invisible for people who are not logged in. You don't want to spook guests about any potential problems inside of the staff team. As I said, bad for brand, and bad for authority.

2 - MIDDLE GROUND
Don't allow people to make admin abuse reports. Handle these internally through tips and community feedback. As aforementioned, the community will let you know about admins they don't want. Trial mods and regular mods, I'll consent to let that part of the system continue.

3 - IDEAL
I can guess that the ultimate reason behind the system in the first place was transparency. This solution should have a sufficient level of that. Ultimately, people don't care about what a staff member has done wrong, but that the fix has been made. Therefore, completely privatize the system. Make a google form, or some type of submission form on the website, or even use an email. Then, internally
deal with them. Add the demotions, warnings, etc. to Dev Logs or important posts about the staff team. You don't even have to use specific names but say something along the lines of "We warned our staff members about community based issues 10 times this month, a 40% decrease from last month".

TO THE COMMUNITY READING THIS POST:
I am not attacking your right to transparency, I want to build up the authority of the staff team that is trying to make the place where you spend your free time a better place.

THE THE STAFF READING THIS POST:
At least discuss it. I understand that Badlion is under semi-new management, and this could be a great way to begin re-building the staff culture. A culture based of a little trust.

Hoping this finds it's way to @Archybot or whoever runs the staff team now somehow…
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BlueGuyARed wrote

.


Don't allow people to make admin abuse reports. Handle these internally through tips and community feedback. As aforementioned, the community will let you know about admins they don't want. Trial mods and regular mods, I'll consent to let that part of the system continue.



Errm… Why? If a player feels like an admin has done something wrong he should be able to report it. This part of your post is the most silly, it will not have a positive affect.

You compare Badlion to Microsoft, Apple and Google. They have nothing in common so how can you compare them properly? You say that these massive companies don't let members call out higher ups is because the higher ups of the companies don't interact with the customers as much as admins here can talk to the players here. Also, the people at these big companies can't completely take something away from someone like the admins can here.

Seems like you have put some actual thought into this thread. Apart from this point, seems like you're just chatting complete bs at this point. Not letting people report staff is basically what you're saying. Admins are also staff so why can't people report them?


Lol.
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I'm just curious as to what you mean by "authority" and what the possible long terms and short term benefits are.
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Public staff reports keep staff in check, just because its done no where else does not mean its not a good thing. Badlion does lots of things that other servers don't do which is what makes it a good server.
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I'm not readin this harry potter book holy fuck.
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Funnehh wrote

BlueGuyARed wrote...



Errm… Why? If a player feels like an admin has done something wrong he should be able to report it. This part of your post is the most silly, it will not have a positive affect.

You compare Badlion to Microsoft, Apple and Google. They have nothing in common so how can you compare them properly? You say that these massive companies don't let members call out higher ups is because the higher ups of the companies don't interact with the customers as much as admins here can talk to the players here. Also, the people at these big companies can't completely take something away from someone like the admins can here.

Seems like you have put some actual thought into this thread. Apart from this point, seems like you're just chatting complete bs at this point. Not letting people report staff is basically what you're saying. Admins are also staff so why can't people report them?


Lol.


Badlion, Microsoft, Apple, and Google are all businesses. The biggest difference is that they don't have to give out punishments to any of their users. However, they do make decisions and the people who use their products like to hold them accountable. When they try to hold someone accountable,

I am not saying don't let people report staff. None of the options I laid out say that. I am saying don't do make it such a public system.
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UVpickles wrote

I'm just curious as to what you mean by "authority" and what the possible long terms and short term benefits are.


Defining Authority Better
Anyone who knows how to get to the Badlion website can view the staff reports section. If someone sees that Moderator X false deathbanned someone, and made two false mutes in one week: How are they going to feel about that moderator if they see them in-game? They'll be suspicious of them, if they are playing with a friend Y and he gets banned, that player will side with friend Y because of Moderator X's known history of false punishments. Then, you have two people angry about what could be a completely justifiable ban. From here, in the eyes of the player and friend Y; Moderator X has no idea what he is doing, and his authority will diminish. I've been called out for bullshit in this post, but this is a scenario that is not at all unlikely if you look at a couple recent reports for a specific staff member. This is a scenario about how humans react to other humans making mistake. Does anybody disagree that it generally results in lower levels of trust?

I can't provide a quantifiable possibility for how my system will affect this scenario, but what my system does is make sure the player and friend Y never have that the information that predisposed them to not believe in Moderator X.

Short-term benefits of my system:

Players still get to hold staff accountable, Badlion is able to move internal staffing issues to where they should be: private discussions. Win-Win for each party.

Long-term benefits of my system:

Less challenges to staff, greater respect between the community and staff, and saves time because you don't have to justify every time someone slips up.




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Berx wrote

BlueGuyARed wrote...

I stopped reading at that point. It just shows that your a newbie whos clearly throwing numbers off of his head. You could’ve taken the time to look into the staff abuse sub-forums and seen the way how things are handled but intead, it looks like you just made assumptions to support your points and tried to speak on a topic which you don’t have enough understanding about.

Again though, I haven’t read the whole post because it looks like you have done little to no research on the topic. I’ll take you seriously once you stop “betting” and “guessing” about your numbers. I mean you’re calling bullshit on a system thats been here since the beginning, would’ve expected facts instead of guessed numbers


That was a bit of an exaggeration, my point still carries. If you look through the section, many of them are about punishments that have been overturned. Many of them have no information to support their claim. Many of them are also fabricated, or omit certain details that clearly prove them wrong. All wastes of time, and low quality reports, but potentially misleading. Are there good ones? Yes. However, my point is that they are often in the minority.

I encourage you to keep reading from where you stopped.


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SolrRaze wrote

Public staff reports keep staff in check, just because its done no where else does not mean its not a good thing. Badlion does lots of things that other servers don't do which is what makes it a good server.


Private staff reports would keep staff in check just as well. All servers have staff teams, and all staff teams have bad eggs of them. It is a valid point in saying that Badlion handles this completely opposite from how it is handled on most servers. In this specific instance, I think it makes the server weaker.
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I've been a part of this community for 4 years and have been everything from a new player to a regular to nearly every staff rank you can think of. I am a part of the "old school" staff so my experience is vastly different from that of new staff members.

Yes, the goal here has been or was transparency. We don't want to hide what happens with the staff behind closed doors. Many of the old school staff members came from the OCN community which was known for their secretive staff practices. We, as community members, never could see what the problems within the staff were, if they were being acknowledged, and if anything was being done to fix them. So many things were happening behind closed doors and they were never addressed to the community. Archy was a major critic of the staffing situation on OCN and vowed to make Badlion much more transparent.

Everyone should be held accountable, including admins. There are times that admins do mess up. There are also many examples of staff members that have messed up time and time again and the community has been able to see that a problem was being dealt with.

We can't trust anyone. There is only so much trust we can give to staff members. We just caught 2 senior staff members who were cheating. We caught 2 Famous ranked players as well.

You can't compare us to Apple, Google, or any major company. We are a Minecraft server. We are not a multi-billion dollar publicly-traded company. This comparison is completely irrelevant.
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The amount of transparency at Badlion is one of the biggest reasons I applied for staff on Badlion and not on some other server, transparency is a big reason why people play and Badlion and like it. If I was a player I'd like to know what's going on with the server I'm playing on and how it's being run. As Archy said in his twit longer "Badlion was never supposed to be a business, it was supposed to be a community ran network, and it was that for most of it's existence. We are returning to it, and gberry and I will only have final approval in their changes and we'll only mostly be interfering when it comes to our esports future or legality issues, otherwise they will have the majority of the creative control over the network in their areas.", if it's community ran then the community should know what's going on. As soon as Badlion stops being transparent and starts to hide a lot of stuff from the community you'd no longer see me on the staff team.
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Mr_Bloxley wrote

I've been a part of this community for 4 years and have been everything from a new player to a regular to nearly every staff rank you can think of. I am a part of the "old school" staff so my experience is vastly different from that of new staff members.

Yes, the goal here has been or was transparency. We don't want to hide what happens with the staff behind closed doors. Many of the old school staff members came from the OCN community which was known for their secretive staff practices. We, as community members, never could see what the problems within the staff were, if they were being acknowledged, and if anything was being done to fix them. So many things were happening behind closed doors and they were never addressed to the community. Archy was a major critic of the staffing situation on OCN and vowed to make Badlion much more transparent.

Everyone should be held accountable, including admins. There are times that admins do mess up. There are also many examples of staff members that have messed up time and time again and the community has been able to see that a problem was being dealt with.

We can't trust anyone. There is only so much trust we can give to staff members. We just caught 2 senior staff members who were cheating. We caught 2 Famous ranked players as well.

You can't compare us to Apple, Google, or any major company. We are a Minecraft server. We are not a multi-billion dollar publicly-traded company. This comparison is completely irrelevant.


Asorn wrote

The amount of transparency at Badlion is one of the biggest reasons I applied for staff on Badlion and not on some other server, transparency is a big reason why people play and Badlion and like it. If I was a player I'd like to know what's going on with the server I'm playing on and how it's being run. As Archy said in his twit longer "Badlion was never supposed to be a business, it was supposed to be a community ran network, and it was that for most of it's existence. We are returning to it, and gberry and I will only have final approval in their changes and we'll only mostly be interfering when it comes to our esports future or legality issues, otherwise they will have the majority of the creative control over the network in their areas.", if it's community ran then the community should know what's going on. As soon as Badlion stops being transparent and starts to hide a lot of stuff from the community you'd no longer see me on the staff team.


I see where you are both coming from. Transparency is important, and I'm not neglecting that fact. However, there is a way to be transparent, without being public. For example, the Badlion Client. The specifics of what the Badlion Client does when it's running, isn't public. However, Badlion was transparent enough to basically say that it scans your computer for anything illegal you are running concurrently. I agree, and I want staff issues to be acknowledged and solved… I just don't think that they should be open issues that anyone gets a say in.

Now I'll just respond to a few other points:
- Admins needs to hold admins/senior moderators accountable, the burden shouldn't be on the community to point mistakes out.
- Badlion employs people. Badlion accepts money in exchange for services. Whether Badlion wants to be or not, when it has people whose rent rely upon the stability of Badlion, it becomes a business. Various businesses can always be compared to examine which practices do and don't work. The scale of businesses isn't important, but it is drastic in my model, so I understand the resent to using it
- I'm not laying out a plan for giving staff trust (When I referred to a "culture of trust" I was talking about the fact that the community would have faith in the ability for the staff team to handle problems behind closed doors), that's someone else's job, and that should be an eventual goal.


Specifically addressing @Asorn:
Does my "Ideal" solution have so little transparency that you would leave?

BlueGuyARed wrote

Add the demotions, warnings, etc. to Dev Logs or important posts about the staff team. You don't even have to use specific names but say something along the lines of "We warned our staff members about community based issues 10 times this month, a 40% decrease from last month".



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Just going to keep it short and sweet since ppl are making huge posts regarding this.

Staff team is monitored all the time. The team is so big and so many things to do so it’s common to see a mod slip up. But they almost always learn from their mistakes and won’t make the same mistake twice. Rn I don’t mind the staff reports being public since staff our public figures in this community so they should know that when applying for mod.
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DaddyKeerqq wrote

I'm not readin this harry potter book holy fuck.

xD
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BlueGuyARed wrote

I see where you are both coming from. Transparency is important, and I'm not neglecting that fact. However, there is a way to be transparent, without being public. For example, the Badlion Client. The specifics of what the Badlion Client does when it's running, isn't public. However, Badlion was transparent enough to basically say that it scans your computer for anything illegal you are running concurrently. I agree, and I want staff issues to be acknowledged and solved… I just don't think that they should be open issues that anyone gets a say in.

This already happens the majority of the time (if not all the time). If someone actually makes a valid report then the problem is solved internally. There is no dialogue between a moderator and their manager on the report thread itself, nor are the specifics of such conversation ever publicized. From my experience the most you'll get is that "the staff member in question has been talked to" which seems like an appropriate piece of information to share if someone was mistreated.

BlueGuyARed wrote

Now I'll just respond to a few other points:
- Admins needs to hold admins/senior moderators accountable, the burden shouldn't be on the community to point mistakes out.


Obviously it is on the community to point out mistakes. "The community" is who everyone interacts with the majority of the time, even staff members. The solution for those mistakes is a different story and I explained that above.
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Yes, I would leave if your ideal situation would be implemented.
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I feel like you are very uneducated on how the current system works, and you're comparing a minecraft server to huge companies. Transparency is not a bad thing but a good thing when it comes to staff abuse reports. People should be allowed to call out any staff member when it comes to abuse, and they are held publicly accountable for all they've done. Most of these arguments you are giving aren't well founded especially since all you seem to use is "billion dollar companies don't allow customers to report executives" or "I have never seen this on another server".
As for this: https://www.badlion.net/forum/thread/202531/post/1117053#1117053 it's ironic that you complain about us being "too transparent" and you assume Archy just banned him for no reason. There are many things players aren't allowed to see or don't know about, and in this case there are chat logs Archy knows about that prompted the mute and ban for wasting his time in a forums report.
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I'm not reading that all
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You guys have so much time :o
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