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The Sage
Procrastinator Most High
Moderator

Australia
31701 Posts

Posted - 19 Nov 2008 :  02:37:52  Show Profile Send The Sage a Private Message  Reply with Quote  Delete Topic
I'm re-directing a previous discussion from the "Everyone please read!" scroll to this shelf, in an attempt to further gauge the opinions of scribes on this particular subject:-
quote:
Originally posted by The Sage

quote:
Originally posted by Kuje

I can agree with this one and there does, to me, seem to be a lot more off topic or one line comments in many threads lately, making it annoying to read through some threads.
Heh. Indeed, I've noticed a slight increase in this myself. [Though, sometimes, I've been just as responsible for said off-topicness].

How do other scribes feel about this issue?


Candlekeep Forums Moderator

Candlekeep - The Library of Forgotten Realms Lore
http://www.candlekeep.com
-- Candlekeep Forum Code of Conduct

Scribe for the Candlekeep Compendium -- Volume IX now available (Oct 2007)

"So Saith Ed" -- the collected Candlekeep replies of Ed Greenwood

Zhoth'ilam Folio -- The Electronic Misadventures of a Rambling Sage

Nerfed2Hell
Senior Scribe

USA
387 Posts

Posted - 19 Nov 2008 :  02:50:14  Show Profile  Visit Nerfed2Hell's Homepage Send Nerfed2Hell a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I personally don't mind a little off-topic posting here and there... discussion is organic and such things can help spur creation of new interesting discussions in other, newly created scrolls when the off-topic poster sees interest in the topic (or decides to drop something when the off topic isn't well recieved). Ending such by including a link to the new scroll (such as was done in the Please Read thread redirecting to this one) is a nice way to conclude the disruption, by pointing people who were interested where further discussion may be found... with a great many of scrolls to read through, new ones may be missed or even passed over for sake of time or for not knowing a previous discussion was moved, restarted, and/or continued elsewhere.

Continued "thread-crapping" and intentional derailing can ruin a scroll by making it overly lengthy and hard to find the relevant content one opened the scroll to read.

Some people are like a slinky... not good for much, but when you push them down the stairs, it makes you smile.
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Kuje
Great Reader

USA
7915 Posts

Posted - 19 Nov 2008 :  03:03:34  Show Profile Send Kuje a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Don't get me wrong, I don't mind some off topic discussion but it just, again, to me, seems that there has been a rise of off topic comments and or thread crapping lately.

But, as I said, that could just be my opinion.

For some of us, books are as important as almost anything else on earth. What a miracle it is that out of these small, flat, rigid squares of paper unfolds world after world, worlds that sing to you, comfort and quiet and excite you... Books are full of the things that you don't get in real life - wonderful, lyrical language, for instance, right off the bat. - Anne Lamott, Bird by Bird

Scribe for the Candlekeep Compendium

Edited by - Kuje on 19 Nov 2008 03:03:50
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
34583 Posts

Posted - 19 Nov 2008 :  03:10:49  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I've not really noticed any additional amount of going off-topic.

Candlekeep Forums Moderator

Candlekeep - The Library of Forgotten Realms Lore
http://www.candlekeep.com
-- Candlekeep Forum Code of Conduct

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I am the Giant Space Hamster of Ill Omen!
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althen artren
Senior Scribe

USA
780 Posts

Posted - 19 Nov 2008 :  04:31:36  Show Profile Send althen artren a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Spells stilled, Scribes:

As an instigator, I say that I do enjoy some small off topic
statements. I think we're all trying understand each other, and
some statements give us an idea to the personality behind the
keyboard. Plus, some of the one liners are just OMG funny.
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Pandora
Learned Scribe

Germany
305 Posts

Posted - 19 Nov 2008 :  07:01:44  Show Profile  Visit Pandora's Homepage Send Pandora a Private Message  Reply with Quote
One of the big problems is the definition of what is "off topic". Sometimes it is obvious and sometimes it isnt that clear, so finding a general rule on how to prevent it seems impossible and having moderators move posts to a different thread doesnt really seem a good idea. I think the way it is handled atm is good and the only two things that should govern it are: common sense and respect for others.

If you cant say what youre meaning,
you can never mean what youre saying.

- Centauri Minister of Intelligence, Babylon 5
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Genis
Learned Scribe

USA
226 Posts

Posted - 19 Nov 2008 :  07:07:24  Show Profile  Visit Genis's Homepage Send Genis a Private Message  Reply with Quote
So wait? this isn't a thread to just go off topic in? DA...RN IT!
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Neil Bishop
Learned Scribe

Singapore
100 Posts

Posted - 19 Nov 2008 :  11:11:27  Show Profile  Visit Neil Bishop's Homepage Send Neil Bishop a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Just before I posted my comments that triggered this discussion I read this thread: http://forum.candlekeep.com/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=11868

After reading it I thought, well, I'm more a lurker and a poster but the webmaster has asked for feedback so here goes. I suppose I have become a little more more sensitive to the issue of threadcrapping since the release of 4E because so many threads here and on ENWorld soon die because of the bad blood caused, in a sense, by the new edition. Candlekeep wasn't like that before and hence I have been a long-time lurker here.

I also made a suggestion about reorganising the forums to remove the duplication and possibly split the canon Realmslore discussions into pre- and post-Spellplague. Perhaps a good reorganisation with some posting guidelines might also prompt an increase in useful posts?

Regards
NXB
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Alisttair
Great Reader

Canada
3054 Posts

Posted - 19 Nov 2008 :  11:25:06  Show Profile  Visit Alisttair's Homepage Send Alisttair a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Compared to a hockey forum I frequent, the off-topicness here is non-existent.

However, realistically speaking, there is some off-topicness that occurs. As Narfed said, discussion is organic and hainb gnew ideas come from one discussion to lead to something else is great, as long as it doesn't go too long in the wrong thread and is instead linked to the appropriate thread.

Karsite Arcanar (Most Holy Servant of Karsus)

Anauria - Survivor State of Netheril as penned by me:
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Ashe Ravenheart
Great Reader

USA
3150 Posts

Posted - 19 Nov 2008 :  14:11:54  Show Profile Send Ashe Ravenheart a Private Message  Reply with Quote
As I stated before, I know I'm one of those 'off on a tangents' type of people that will suddenly and inexplicable derail a conversation. I usually try to stay on topic, but my inability to monitor myself from 'zingers' (must be all those years from watching MST3k) means that many times my posts read like a person with ADD in a Best Buy.

Admittedly, the amount of off-topic-ness here is very low compared to other boards I've been a part of, but I think that when it does happen it's a bit more glaring. On a lot of other boards (that I'm a part of, at least) we do have some 'misc' sub-boards for people to post and reply to stuff that may not be a part of theme of the board. So, in essence, they quarantine the off-topic posts to areas where that is encouraged. I'm not sure if such an idea would be worth doing here, since we, as scribes, tend to police ourselves better than on other boards. (Seriously, even though I'm bad, I'm MUCH worse on the other forums...)

I actually DO know everything. I just have a very poor index of my knowledge.

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Kilvan
Senior Scribe

Canada
894 Posts

Posted - 19 Nov 2008 :  14:21:04  Show Profile Send Kilvan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Take this one from yesterday http://forum.candlekeep.com/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=11873

The topic quickly shifted slightly, since I was asking about blackguards and paladins of the same god in general and it became oriented to the specific case of Helm. Result: it gave answers even more interesting than what I wished for. This is what discussion is all about.

Of course, like in the one Bishop linked, sometimes off-topicness does not shift slightly. I just ignore those scrolls, or wait until it's brought back to the main topic.

Oblivion loomed on every side, the offspring lived, basking in the realization that each moment could be the last moment.
--This was the beauty of chaos
--This was the beauty of Lolth
--This was the doom for all, but one

Quote from "Extinction"
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BARDOBARBAROS
Senior Scribe

Greece
581 Posts

Posted - 19 Nov 2008 :  14:36:53  Show Profile  Visit BARDOBARBAROS's Homepage Send BARDOBARBAROS a Private Message  Reply with Quote
i think theone and only who can speak of "off-topicness" is the ONE who has made the topic which appears the off-topicness.. I mean that if in his topic someone is off-topic and the creator do not like it he can express it..
As for mine topics i accept a MEDIUM off-topicness as it can be used for further discussion between the scribes..

BARDOBARBAROS DOES NOT KILL.
HE DECAPITATES!!!


"The city changes, but the fools within it remain always the same" (Edwin Odesseiron- Baldur's gate 2)
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Rinonalyrna Fathomlin
Great Reader

USA
7106 Posts

Posted - 19 Nov 2008 :  15:04:48  Show Profile  Visit Rinonalyrna Fathomlin's Homepage Send Rinonalyrna Fathomlin a Private Message  Reply with Quote
For my part, I can't throw stones, because sometimes I've been involved in off-topic conversations.

I don't mind some off-topic comments, in any case. I do think the moderators do a good job of steering threads back to topic, and if off-topicness gets annoying, I don't think it's out of line for regular posters to do that either as long as it's done politely.

"Instead of asking why we sleep, it might make sense to ask why we wake. Perchance we live to dream. From that perspective, the sea of troubles we navigate in the workaday world might be the price we pay for admission to another night in the world of dreams."
--Richard Greene (letter to Time)
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Alisttair
Great Reader

Canada
3054 Posts

Posted - 19 Nov 2008 :  15:08:13  Show Profile  Visit Alisttair's Homepage Send Alisttair a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I agree, the mods do well in their task of bringing things back on topic.

Karsite Arcanar (Most Holy Servant of Karsus)

Anauria - Survivor State of Netheril as penned by me:
http://www.dmsguild.com/m/product/172023
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Erik Scott de Bie
Forgotten Realms Author

USA
4597 Posts

Posted - 19 Nov 2008 :  17:45:31  Show Profile  Visit Erik Scott de Bie's Homepage Send Erik Scott de Bie a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I'm as bad about off-topicness as many, though I try to steer my posts to *connect*--at least--to the topic. I'm very glad to have such good moderators as we do, and I encourage them to let me know personally if I'm straying from topic.

The thing that thows me is that when 4e stuff comes up, almost inevitably someone will come in and say something witty (or not-so-witty) panning the whole thing, like "do you mean in 4e, or in the REAL Realms?" or some sort of analogy casting the 4e FR as perfumed garbage.

Now, I fully respect everyone's opinion, and everyone has the equal right to make that opinion known (respectfully, without intentionally offending those who hold a different opinion). But I'd rather the 4e FR hate stay contained in threads that specifically ask about one's opinion regarding 4e in general (or in specific).

It wouldn't be ok, for instance, for someone to pop up in every 3.x lore request thread and say "d20 derivative systems suck! 2e forever!" That's a perfectly valid opinion--it's just radically off-topic and inappropriately posted.

Cheers

Erik Scott de Bie

'Tis easier to destroy than to create.

Author of a number of Realms novels (GHOSTWALKER, DEPTHS OF MADNESS, and the SHADOWBANE series), contributor to the NEVERWINTER CAMPAIGN GUIDE and SHADOWFELL: GLOOMWROUGHT AND BEYOND, Twitch DM of the Dungeon Scrawlers, currently playing "The Westgate Irregulars"
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
34583 Posts

Posted - 19 Nov 2008 :  17:49:48  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Erik Scott de Bie

I'm as bad about off-topicness as many, though I try to steer my posts to *connect*--at least--to the topic. I'm very glad to have such good moderators as we do, and I encourage them to let me know personally if I'm straying from topic.

The thing that thows me is that when 4e stuff comes up, almost inevitably someone will come in and say something witty (or not-so-witty) panning the whole thing, like "do you mean in 4e, or in the REAL Realms?" or some sort of analogy casting the 4e FR as perfumed garbage.

Now, I fully respect everyone's opinion, and everyone has the equal right to make that opinion known (respectfully, without intentionally offending those who hold a different opinion). But I'd rather the 4e FR hate stay contained in threads that specifically ask about one's opinion regarding 4e in general (or in specific).

It wouldn't be ok, for instance, for someone to pop up in every 3.x lore request thread and say "d20 derivative systems suck! 2e forever!" That's a perfectly valid opinion--it's just radically off-topic and inappropriately posted.

Cheers



I have to agree with this post. It's not as bad as it was, but there is still a lot of 4E hate popping up in inappropriate places. I dislike the Realms of 4E as much as anyone else, and certainly moreso than some others, but even to me, it gets really tiring to see the same crap being spouted over and over again, and even worse when it has little or no bearing on the actual topic.

I'm also tired of seeing people putting all of the blame on one person, and/or doing things like saying that WotC as a whole or a particular designer actively wishes ill for the setting.

Candlekeep Forums Moderator

Candlekeep - The Library of Forgotten Realms Lore
http://www.candlekeep.com
-- Candlekeep Forum Code of Conduct

Editor and scribe for The Candlekeep Compendium

I am the Giant Space Hamster of Ill Omen!
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Hawkins
Great Reader

USA
2130 Posts

Posted - 19 Nov 2008 :  18:12:00  Show Profile  Visit Hawkins's Homepage Send Hawkins a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I, myself, have been trying to majorly cut down on my anti-4e Realms posting (even if that means not posting as often as I would like). If I am not doing so well, please let me know. However, the latest bit of off-topicness that I have seen usually seems to be a tit-for-tat thing between either one pro-4e Realms person and multiple anti-4e Realms people or one anti-4e person and multiple pro-4e Realms people (depending on the scroll). Most of these scrolls are quite obviously anti-(or pro-)4e Realms by the title of the scroll, so if people from the different camps would just avoid the obvious scrolls of the other camp then I think that it would greatly help the problem. And yes, I know that I still am guilty of sniping at 4e here and there, but I think that I am doing better.

Errant d20 Designer - My Blog (last updated January 06, 2016)

One, two! One, two! And through and through
The vorpal blade went snicker-snack!
He left it dead, and with its head
He went galumphing back. --Lewis Carroll, Through the Looking-Glass

"Mmm, not the darkness," Myrin murmured. "Don't cast it there." --Erik Scott de Bie, Shadowbane

* My character sheets (PFRPG, 3.5, and AE versions; not viewable in Internet Explorer)
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Dalor Darden
Great Reader

USA
4077 Posts

Posted - 19 Nov 2008 :  18:14:06  Show Profile Send Dalor Darden a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Having the ability to split a thread into a new topic would help alot...keep things more on topic but allow people to go off on side tangents that would allow the "organic" conversation to grow in whatever direction it wanted.

The Old Grey Box and AD&D for me!
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Erik Scott de Bie
Forgotten Realms Author

USA
4597 Posts

Posted - 19 Nov 2008 :  18:44:10  Show Profile  Visit Erik Scott de Bie's Homepage Send Erik Scott de Bie a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I think a good policy would be something like this:

If you don't like/support/have anything positive or useful to the OP to say about XXX (say 4e FR, or the Spellplague, or any other topic you can name), then just avoid posting in a thread about XXX, unless it's a thread specifically asking about your opinion of XXX.

We all know folks who are against 4e FR like posting their opinion--no problem. Another anti-4e thread pops up every week or so. If/when you get it out of your system, great, more power to ya, we can move on. If you're still pissed, then by all means, be pissed--just keep it to a thread *about being pissed,* and let everyone else have the uninterrupted discussions they want to have.

And an aside (ironic, this being a post about avoiding off-topicness, but):
quote:
Originally posted by HawkinstheDM

I, myself, have been trying to majorly cut down on my anti-4e Realms posting (even if that means not posting as often as I would like).
[snip]
And yes, I know that I still am guilty of sniping at 4e here and there, but I think that I am doing better.

You seem to be doing better to me, Hawk.

Cheers

Erik Scott de Bie

'Tis easier to destroy than to create.

Author of a number of Realms novels (GHOSTWALKER, DEPTHS OF MADNESS, and the SHADOWBANE series), contributor to the NEVERWINTER CAMPAIGN GUIDE and SHADOWFELL: GLOOMWROUGHT AND BEYOND, Twitch DM of the Dungeon Scrawlers, currently playing "The Westgate Irregulars"
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Ashe Ravenheart
Great Reader

USA
3150 Posts

Posted - 19 Nov 2008 :  18:54:49  Show Profile Send Ashe Ravenheart a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Erik Scott de Bie

I think a good policy would be something like this:

If you don't like/support/have anything positive or useful to the OP to say about XXX (say 4e FR, or the Spellplague, or any other topic you can name), then just avoid posting in a thread about XXX, unless it's a thread specifically asking about your opinion of XXX.

We all know folks who are against 4e FR like posting their opinion--no problem. Another anti-4e thread pops up every week or so. If/when you get it out of your system, great, more power to ya, we can move on. If you're still pissed, then by all means, be pissed--just keep it to a thread *about being pissed,* and let everyone else have the uninterrupted discussions they want to have.

And an aside (ironic, this being a post about avoiding off-topicness, but):
quote:
Originally posted by HawkinstheDM

I, myself, have been trying to majorly cut down on my anti-4e Realms posting (even if that means not posting as often as I would like).
[snip]
And yes, I know that I still am guilty of sniping at 4e here and there, but I think that I am doing better.

You seem to be doing better to me, Hawk.

Cheers


I feel I've been getting better on the Spellplague hate as well (see? didn't even call it Sellplague! [D'oh]).

And, if I find I really have a burning desire to bad mouth it, I'll shoot a flame over in the WotC boards where it quickly gets swallowed up by all the other posters (kinda like tossing a twig in a bonfire). Even with that, I've been getting better.

I actually DO know everything. I just have a very poor index of my knowledge.

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Alphabetized Index of Realms NPCs
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
34583 Posts

Posted - 19 Nov 2008 :  21:36:50  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I've been doing the same thing. I have various reasons for doing so, but a large part of it is simply being tired of seeing the same thing over and over and not seeing much point to contributing the same.

Candlekeep Forums Moderator

Candlekeep - The Library of Forgotten Realms Lore
http://www.candlekeep.com
-- Candlekeep Forum Code of Conduct

Editor and scribe for The Candlekeep Compendium

I am the Giant Space Hamster of Ill Omen!
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The Sage
Procrastinator Most High
Moderator

Australia
31701 Posts

Posted - 19 Nov 2008 :  23:41:15  Show Profile Send The Sage a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Erik Scott de Bie

I think a good policy would be something like this:

If you don't like/support/have anything positive or useful to the OP to say about XXX (say 4e FR, or the Spellplague, or any other topic you can name), then just avoid posting in a thread about XXX, unless it's a thread specifically asking about your opinion of XXX.
Erik, do you mind if I borrow this and modify it slightly? We're presently revising the Candlekeep Code of Conduct for Candlekeep 2, and I'd like to add something like this to it.

Candlekeep Forums Moderator

Candlekeep - The Library of Forgotten Realms Lore
http://www.candlekeep.com
-- Candlekeep Forum Code of Conduct

Scribe for the Candlekeep Compendium -- Volume IX now available (Oct 2007)

"So Saith Ed" -- the collected Candlekeep replies of Ed Greenwood

Zhoth'ilam Folio -- The Electronic Misadventures of a Rambling Sage

Edited by - The Sage on 19 Nov 2008 23:42:27
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Markustay
Realms Explorer extraordinaire

USA
15724 Posts

Posted - 20 Nov 2008 :  00:23:26  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I thought I heard someone talking about me...

Truth be told, although I'm probably guiltier then most, this forum is FAR less 'talky' then almost all others I've been to (only one exception - and that's a 'tech' site). Compared to WotC, this place is bastion off on-topicness (Okay... not quite a word... sue me).

I don't mind threads going off-topic for a few posts - say 4 or 5 - because we are all nerds at heart, and we can't help but contribute to a tangent that interests us (like comics, Sci-Fi, Movies, Dr. Who, Cartoons, other fantasy settings, etc, etc...). In fact, it can be fun to go off-kilter for a little while... so long as it doesn't go beyond a half-dozen posts or so. Then it begins to get hard to find the info the thread is about (as Kuje has pointed out).

However, a little banter makes the place seem friendlier, I think, so a small amount should be tolerated... within reason.

One word posts or a post consisting of just smileys should be a no-no.

Another big exceptinon I think should be Ed's thread - there I can see allowing maybe twice as many off-topic posts (about a dozen?), just because Ed's answers - and sometimes THO's provocative responses - lend theselves to discussion. Also, we occassionally have something to contribute to the questions (or answers) ourselves, which technically isn't on-topic, because we are not Ed. I'd say until Ed himself (or THO) complains about it, that thread should be given at least slighty more leeway then most.

Another factor should be the sub-forum itself. In the 'Sages' sections, direct responses to questions and little else is all that is called for there. General should be a little more forgiving, and Running the Realms moreso, just because discussion is part of what those forums are about.

Bottom line is I think it's the Moderator's call, and I think they are doing a very good job right now, and I wouldn't change a thing.

EDIT: I forgot to mention the 3e/4e discussions - unless the thread is EXPLICITY about comparing some aspect of the two, DON'T GO THERE!!!

"I have never in my life learned anything from any man who agreed with me" --- Dudley Field Malone


Edited by - Markustay on 20 Nov 2008 00:30:08
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The Sage
Procrastinator Most High
Moderator

Australia
31701 Posts

Posted - 20 Nov 2008 :  00:43:18  Show Profile Send The Sage a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Markustay

Another big exceptinon I think should be Ed's thread - there I can see allowing maybe twice as many off-topic posts (about a dozen?), just because Ed's answers - and sometimes THO's provocative responses - lend theselves to discussion. Also, we occassionally have something to contribute to the questions (or answers) ourselves, which technically isn't on-topic, because we are not Ed. I'd say until Ed himself (or THO) complains about it, that thread should be given at least slighty more leeway then most.
I do like to allow a certain amount of "off-topicness" in Ed's scroll, mostly because the Lady Hooded One herself enjoys a little subtle [and no-so-subtle ] banter from time to time. And also, as you said, sometimes scribes have certain other points to add to Ed's answers, or like using them as the focus of a particular side-discussion. But it's when full-blown discussions start that have very little, if anything, to do with one of Ed's replys, that I have to step in and ask that the discussion be taken to another scroll.

Candlekeep Forums Moderator

Candlekeep - The Library of Forgotten Realms Lore
http://www.candlekeep.com
-- Candlekeep Forum Code of Conduct

Scribe for the Candlekeep Compendium -- Volume IX now available (Oct 2007)

"So Saith Ed" -- the collected Candlekeep replies of Ed Greenwood

Zhoth'ilam Folio -- The Electronic Misadventures of a Rambling Sage

Edited by - The Sage on 20 Nov 2008 00:44:03
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scererar
Master of Realmslore

USA
1615 Posts

Posted - 20 Nov 2008 :  01:16:42  Show Profile Send scererar a Private Message  Reply with Quote
it happens more often lately IMO, then over the course of the past few years that I have been hanging out here. It is not bad, actually can be fun and builds a little rapport among the internet group here. However, I feel that it should be kept to a minimum. I also feel that the mods do a great job at keeping everyone on track without bringing down the hammer.
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
34583 Posts

Posted - 20 Nov 2008 :  06:05:45  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by scererar

I also feel that the mods do a great job at keeping everyone on track without bringing down the hammer.




I, for one, appreciate statements like this.

Candlekeep Forums Moderator

Candlekeep - The Library of Forgotten Realms Lore
http://www.candlekeep.com
-- Candlekeep Forum Code of Conduct

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I am the Giant Space Hamster of Ill Omen!
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