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    Writing, gaming, alchemy, magic
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  • Favorite LucasArts Game
    Knights of the Old Republic
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Adavardes's Achievements


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  1. I kind of went back and forth with myself for a while on whether or not to post here, since I thought it might seem petty, which is really not what I'm going for. I decided that since I was in for a penny on this particular discussion, I should go in for a pound and let all of you who were not present for the big project discussion in on what happened. If anything, I'm doing this as a word of warning, and you can draw what conclusions from it that you will, but it'll put my mind at ease knowing that I may help people avoid wasting their time as well. Long story short, I decided to leave the project, in order to save my time on what I believe to be a very lost cause. See, when we started talking seriously about getting things done, about offering help to save what is very clearly a dying website and forum, I thought it would be as equals, as peers, trying to help create something better from what is very much a corpse. However, it appears that you can take a forum away from an admin, but you can't take the admin away from the forum. Let me explain. In the process of ironing out disagreements and churning up ideas to make changes, I was, as I often am, a voice of dissent that many people disagreed with. I think that this is a valuable tool towards progress, which I always made sure I kept the spirit of when in these arguments. A lot of these bore fruit. The name changes you see now were part of that. It started people thinking, looking for alternatives, finding compromises, and it was working. However, there were admins who didn't like what I was saying and began telling me to stop saying it. Pretty much giving me orders. Now, it's also a personal opinion of mine that when people play leader over a small group of people that don't need one, this kind of work is doomed to failure. Admins in the old sense of the term, people that held a made-up authority over other people that are their peers, are outdated, and detrimental to the new internet attitude. See, there's this false sense of importance that one gets when maintaining a forum. Like it's their reign, their domain, their own personal reality. But that's not really the case. You need people to make a forum anything worth the time, just as much as you need people with know-how and finances to create the space. I can run a kitchen all day long, but what am I without customers? To me, they're more important than the chef, or at least equal to them. So when one of the admins involved (I won't be naming names) told me, however diplomatically, to stop talking about what we were talking about and move on? I took offense. I went there because I was asked to help, as an equal and a fellow human being of shared interest. I considered myself at least worth more than being dismissed like a serf that had spoken out of turn. This happened twice before I decided to pick up and leave, and I did this for three reasons. The first was that I am a relatively busy person, and my time is valuable to me. I'm at an age where I've begun to realise that money doesn't hold a candle to time in terms of value, because time is the one thing you can't buy. To me, with these people running the show, this was a waste of my most valuable resource. Second, these admins still believe they're in charge of something, and that it's something that is still worthwhile in its present state. I think I've made it no mystery that I think where LF is right now is a failure. They failed. That doesn't mean they can't pick up the pieces and make something new, but that means a new attitude, new community, new direction. The old didn't work. It failed, and it failed for good reason, which leads me to my third cause for abandoning the project: The admins, and the culture they want to perpetuate, is a poison that killed all forums like it long ago. It is toxic, exclusionary, presumptuous and vile. It elects leaders to rule over a group of people that don't need ruling. The best analogy I can think of is tournaments or group gaming hang-outs at hobby shops. The managers/owners of the store keep the peace, keep it friendly, but do nothing else. They don't tell you what you can say, kick you out for disagreeing with them, shout you down because they don't like what you're saying. If they do, they won't be seeing much business in the future, because they're clearly unfair to their customers. That's what forums were like with this sort of staff, that's what they were like here, and that's why this effort will fail. You can dress up a website, give it a brand new colour and layout and a shiny new name, but when the inside is dead rotten, it's never going to be more than that. And truth be told, I don't honestly think they want it to be. So to answer the original question, yes, from all forms of observable evidence, this forum is dead in all but name. I tried, and I wasted my time. Don't make the same mistake. Let the past lie, because all this will end with is heartache. EDIT: Forgot to mention, but I intend this to be my last post, and honestly, I don't expect it to last very long here. You don't want to hear something negative when you're trying to sell positivity and hope. That's fine, I still said what I felt I needed to say in a place for everyone to see. As a side thought, having the discussions about fixing this place away from the forum where people can't read it is really exclusionary as well. It felt like a think tank for the new forum elite, rather than an attempt to create a new and forward-facing community of people on equal terms. Just a thought. Have a good one, guys, you won't hear from me again after this.
  2. The good news is that the conversation appears to be bearing fruit. We're starting to figure out where we all can contribute our time, and what can be done to streamline, modernise, and revitalise this community. We're currently sort of feeling out for a graphic designer, however. So, if anyone reading these has any skill with photoshop or graphic design on websites, that's really where we could use the most help at the moment.
  3. I got a PM as well. It looks like we're getting their attention, at the very least.
  4. I'll go ahead and send a message of my own. I guess we'll all need to get loud if we want answers. EDIT: Jeeesus there are a lot of admins on this forum. It took me a bit to message them all. O_o
  5. Lynk, it's fine if you disagree with me. If there's one thing I've learned about running not just forums, but ANYTHING successfully as a group, it's that agreeing with each other all the time is not just implausible, it's not even constructive. Disagreements and discourse is the way to progress. If you guys chose to have me on, and if the majority disagreed with my views, that's fine. I'd follow the rules and execute my job to help the community. That would never stop me from voicing my opinion in the different direction though, if only to staff, and I would still perform my duties in as closely a manner as fits my personal preferences, while still working within the boundaries of the rules. I will always be continuously and loudly opposed to what I think is the wrong direction, that's just who I am; but I would respect and follow what the majority of staff wants, I promise you that. As for whether or not I'm motivated, I have a lot of reasons to want to see this forum survive. As I said, I love forums as a medium. I disagree with you and think they are a medium losing relevance every day, but I love them and want them to succeed. This isn't my first forum; heck, it isn't even one of the first, and my contributions to this forum and its community are not as deep an impact as I had elsewhere so many years ago. But this is the only one that I think has a snowball's chance of making it back on its feet and finding a new audience. The people I've seen in this thread love this place and want to revive the spirit and culture of the community they grew up with. Not only do I respect that sentiment, I sympathise strongly with it. When I was part of web forums, I was an idiot kid. I abused power as badly as the next guy, and had no idea what I was doing. I didn't know how to be a team player. Now, I'm 24 years old. The world and my place in it is very different to me now. I sit on my Condominium Association Board, which is a very active group that makes a lot of decisions for the community. I feel I have the maturity, experience, and mistakes under my belt to really help this community grow. More than that, my situation has evolved in recent months to allow me the spare time to give to a place like this. I got a better job that I can work part-time and still make as much as working full-time, leaving me free time for the first time in a while. I guess what I'm saying is, if you want to keep a Star Wars forum alive and kicking, that's been around for over a decade? That's something I can 100% get behind. I'd love to hear your ideas and offer some of my own, and serve in any capacity that fits best for my skills to make those plans successful.
  6. You guys don't know me terribly well, but I love forums. I met my wife on a forum. I met one of my very best friends, who actually happens to be an older member on this forum, on a different forum. I've operated a few, watched a great many fail, and I've seen what the successful ones do today to stay afloat. If you'll have my help, I offer it. I'm pessimistic and critical about pretty much everything, but I like to think I'm fair and honest in a constructive way, and I know a tiny bit about bringing traffic into a website. In all honesty, if the scarce few of us are going to be hopping into staff positions and taking the reigns, we need to have a plan and a direction first. Just being staff isn't enough, and just complicates things even further, because it diminishes new members to see all the active people as staff. They tend to feel left out or isolated and people don't like that when seeking to be part of a community. What we need are people who know more than just how to run a forum. We need people who can carry conversations and offer advice. Modders, talented gamers, walkthroughs, etc.
  7. To be honest, I find that sort of atheism to be as presumptuous as Christianity. We DON'T KNOW what happens after we die. No idea. Don't know if that's it, don't know if there's more, no idea. Not a single clue, because nobody's come back to tell us about it, as far as we can tell. Atheists like to use the phrase "it's the logical conclusion" to support a very pessimistic view of death that is closer to nihilism than it is to scientific skepticism. There is no observable data to refer to or infer from as to what happens after we die, therefore, we have no working scientific theory as to what takes place for our consciousness. Saying that it's most likely that we just switch off and cease to be is guesswork, at best, and it's guesswork based on nothing. Absolutely nothing. Entropy is a cyclical system. Energy and matter does not cease to be, it only moves. So, if you don't like believing that, then don't. There's no good reason to. In fact, in all honesty, believing in some form of an afterlife, though not any particular religious one, makes a lot more sense to me than believing it's just over. There's more general scientific evidence to support it, given the fact that most things in physics and nature work on cyclical systems that repeat themselves. Personally, I take the Confucian standpoint. I have no idea, and there's no sense worrying about it when there's so much to do right now on earth. So don't worry about it. Just live your life, and when it comes time for the big punchline, then you'll know. It's about the best we can do with our current level of knowledge. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
  8. That's well and good, but my statement stands. The rules should be relaxed, and heavily so. The staff is way too large as it is an should shrink drastically. And moderators, if they were unobtrusive and infrequent with their work before, should keep that policy up. I think the one thing that really needs to be discussed is: can this place survive if we limit ourselves to gaming as a topic, or should we just become a general lucas/star wars forum? With the movies coming out, that's a large audience we miss by keeping ourselves in the realm of video gaming alone.
  9. I still think that if you wanted to restructure this site to have a more modern appeal, you'd have to drastically change the size and scope of both the format and staff. There doesn't need to be more than three admins at any given time, and at most you should only need 4-5 supermoderators to keep the place civil and directed. The rules should be trimmed to remove censorship and anything that restricts self-expression of any sort. Flaming of course should still be punished, but only if it goes beyond the point where it is not capable of resolving itself. This is just my opinion, but beyond keeping posts neat and orderly and making sure topics stay on topic, moderators should maintain a hands-off policy as often as possible. Do their best to use their authority invisibly and sparingly, but still be active as users and participate in conversations. If you have that kind of attitude, and a group of administrators that are actively engaged in maintaining and improving the software of the site, this place could find its feet. Maintaining interest is the really hard part. We have new Star Wars movies coming out and a new Battlefront hitting shelves any day now. Additionally, The Old Republic is still up and running. We should work on drawing in those crowds and move from there. Maybe have a forum dedicated to the films, a forum dedicated to the newer games, and two forums dedicated to the old school stuff, one for star wars and one for other stuff? Just spitballing here.
  10. Not all forums are dead, this is very true. But forums as a social medium are not the go-to answer that they were when the internet was a younger place. Keeping a community like this alive takes more than a relevant topic. It takes the need for a community within that topic. In other words, it takes the need for cooperation and communication, not just for news and information about a given topic. Modding forums still exist because people like asking other modders about tips and tricks for doing certain things with mods. The same goes for hobby forums. Many current event/discussion forums still exist because you need a group together to get different opinions for a discussion. Even if this community had a relevant topic that people are interested in today, it would still need a reason for people to talk to each other about it. Otherwise the conversations would be as fleeting and pointless as a facebook post, and I might as well use facebook for that, right? And you may be right. When things are moving and shaking, nobody really cares about censors or rules. But when a forum is in its final hours, clinging to life, rules are like the nail in the coffin. It drives people away who want the freedom to say what they feel. If the world's ending and everybody is dead, do you still keep the prison running just in case someone breaks the law? Look, I know you're frustrated at how so many forums have gone the way of the dodo, but I'm basing my points on simple fact, from my own experiences and the experiences of others: forums failed because they stopped being appealing next to larger social media. On facebook or tumblr, I control what I see or don't see, who says what on my page, I get to see many different people sharing jokes and opinions in a primarily open discussion. The information is easy to get and the crowd is as large or small as you want to make it. A lot of your argument comes from the idea that forums are a more focused medium. In some ways this is true, but honestly, it's all in how you use social media. Facebook has fan pages. Tumblr has blogs. And as for your cyber bullying argument: to be honest, that's not my problem. Parents have the responsibility to control their child and what information they consume until they're old enough to handle a few petty insults and threats on the internet. It's not anyone's responsibility to keep a child's feelings from getting hurt. He came here, it's the internet, that's the reality of it. If you want to create a safe place for children, then really, you should create a forum just for children and children only. If you want adults and children interacting, then there's no way for it to work but with the kids getting used to the pain.
  11. It's a way to keep the place alive. Never said it was optimal, just an idea.
  12. I think a lot of restructuring is in order, if an attempt at revival is at hand. As someone stated earlier in this thread, the forum is too bulky and too large, and needs to be dramatically resized and restructured to get it where it can function fluidly as a singular, solid community. Forums dedicated to older games need to be combined and synthesized into one "old school" style forum, where the newer stuff should be given the limelight, as that is where all the new members will be coming from. Also, I agree that the format should be updated to be a bit more appealing to modern audiences. Bright, simple, utilitarian setups with limited colour choices and a sleek design is usually your best bet nowadays. Lynk, question for you: has anyone in the staff thought to contact Disney about this website? I have no idea if they'd care or be willing to do anything with it, but it's always worth a shot. They are, after all, very into buying up smaller groups to conglomerate their brand.
  13. I was more speaking about forums in general, more than here. All forums had some sort of drama in the past that they try to distance themselves from, which was probably part of the problem with forums as a medium. It had to do with leadership coming from people that had no real reason to be leaders in the first place, because, in general, what people believed to be necessary levels of moderation tended to be overkill. When the amount of active staff is equal to or higher than the number of active users, there's typically a problem, and that's usually the first death pang you saw in forums back in the day. Larger platforms tend to focus on copyrights and individual privacy more than they focus on content and censorship, which is really the focus of what I'm talking about when I'm talking about unnecessary rules that end up hurting forum communities. Again, this was more a general statement than singularly applying to LF. All in all, the rules are pretty moderate around here, but on other forums, they could get pretty strict, and admins would change them at will and on a whim, which is not good for discussion. People want to feel comfortable and free to express themselves, and when they're afraid of saying a bad word and getting the ban hammer, it doesn't exactly foster that feeling of safety and freedom, does it? If I want to say "**** the system!" then I should be able to say it. When you start telling me not to say the f-word, that's when I start feeling like I'm back at high school, and I'd rather be somewhere else. That's really what I mean by restrictions. Facebook, tumblr, twitter, they don't keep you from saying what you want. In fact, I haven't run up against any moderators telling me I'm wrong, and I'm a very opinionated, rule-breaking sort of guy.
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