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12:02 AM
We also asked several times for more info workshopping, etc. and they didn't seem inclined.
@NautArch I didn't really think it was worth a mod reopen either, but I kinda wanted the outstanding issues to be clearer conveyed. Not sure what history you're seeing that I'm not though
@NautArch Yeah, I don't think fixing the answers will be an issue.
Just reading through the question and trying to put myself in their shoes.
But I'm just one user - others seemed to agree and no one is voting to reopen.
Seems like this one is okay to let be.
@NautArch I think something went poorly with chat syncing on them. I found the mod option to force sync profile, so it should work now, and lets hope that wont be moot
Yeah, I'm not gonna make some big deal. It was more a natural extension of responding to the AiC and that couldn't really put my finger on why it was still closed
It probably could be reopened, and honestly we could rewrite it to be a really good question.
I thought we had one on here about size and stat blocks for 5e, but we don't.
Less the first question about "what size is it", that's just a bad RTBTM question.
Excuse me while I go to try and find a shoe my puppy stole.
Roll to find shoes?
12:16 AM
@Adeptus lol
Q: How to handle "I investigate for <this particular thing>" checks

BrondahlThe characters enter a room, and get the general "what do you see" spiel. One player announces that he wants to "Investigate the room for ". (Let's say "investigate for odd books") or the rogue says he stops the group at the threshold and wants to "investigate the room for traps or other danger"....

Roll Investigate for shoes :)
I think Someone_Evil is referring to Roll To See If I Have Shoes On.
I've got a Stack Exchange Data Explorer challenge for someone feeling up to it: for each year 2011 thru 2021, how many questions were asked, and what percentage were D&D-ish, where D&D-ish is measured as being tagged some variant of one of these tags?: [*dnd*] [dungeons-and-dragons] [pathfinder*] [starfinder*]
related to these comments —
Out of the 1,047 questions created so far this year, 94 of them did not have any tag for D&D, Pathfinder, or Starfinder, for 91% D&D-ish. — doppelgreener 12 hours ago
@doppelgreener Using that methodology: out of 4628 questions asked last year, 514 were not tagged with some D&D variant, for a rough guess of 89% D&D. Not counting the questions which were probably asked about D&D but never formally tagged with a system. — Glazius 55 mins ago
Out of 6248 questions asked in 2019, 741 weren't tagged with some variant, for 88%. Though the difference is less than 1%. In 2017 it was closer to 85%, so we're almost certainly slowly trending up. — Glazius 44 mins ago
it's probably going to be in the high 80% range every year, but i was surprised by Glazius noting a trend upwards
@doppelgreener Maybe give miniman a powerping?
@BESW alas and alack, I cannot @Miniman!
i can give him a poke in other channels
no wait, he's not one of the people i can do that with. nooooo!!
12:26 AM
I talk to him on discord a bit
Also while we're looking back at the year to date, can I get a quorum to reopen this question? rpg.stackexchange.com/questions/181169/… I think it was erroneously closed as a duplicate, and while it's not quite clear enough to give the best answer, I think I can still give it a good answer.
ok I poked him about it
12:43 AM
Tech Jam hosted by will jobst & World Champ Game Co. Artists have art packs. Graphic designers have texture packs. Game designers? We have tech packs.
@Glazius Are there more consequences besides failure?
Bonfire & Blade by Color Spray Games. A Souls-themed rules-lite RPG for 1 GM and 1+ players.
@doppelgreener is this the parameter set you want?
@NautArch The new question is about how to handle a run of bad luck, many failures and/or compromises in a row, while the old question is about how to handle a potentially dramatic single failure. Also the new question actually involves a specific Dungeon World monster, which provides more shared elements to talk about than the completely generic "a chain".
12:56 AM
That makes sense. The other is clearly about a single failure and how to move the story vs a run of multiple failures and what that ultimately means.
I think I understand enough to vote to reopen :)
ok he sent me this
@doppelgreener ^
Oh dang. I didn't think we'd be flat 2018-2020.
That's surprising to see such a huge change in %!
If I were a calculatin' man I'd surmise that ~94% of the variance of the fraction of questions categorized (by miniman) as dnd would be explained by a model that assumed that fraction was increasing linearly with time.
Something I'm concerned by more than %: non-D&D-ish questions were at 500 in 2010-2011, and went up to peak in 2014. They've since declined again to 500 in 2020 like a bell curve. In 2021 we're a quarter through the year and we've got less than 100, meaning we're not on track to match last year's quantity.
1:04 AM
Anybody remember ? we used to have large swathes of questions that probably should've had a D&D tag but didn't. And popular tags that are now dead and their associated topic banned.
This means the non-D&D activity on this site is measurably in decline.
@BESW That might account for quite a lot
Game recs definitely would
@BESW I have occasionally recurring stress-dreams about
Wait, [gm-techniques] is dead and banned?
1:07 AM
@Glazius No, I'm including it in tags that often should get a D&D tag also, but don't--especially historically when the attitude which allowed sys-ag to flourish also led to systemless questions about systems.
My list of tags above is just tags that, in the past, have contributed a lot to non-D&D-tagged questions without indicating a significant increase in questions that really aren't about D&D.
It took five years for this question to get closed for reasons that likely would've been avoided with a system tag.
(And I would happily have taken bets on the system being a D&D-like.)
The pattern of saying "oh yes so system's not important here" for questions that were obviously about D&D and for which the author had decided system wasn't important on the belief that D&D was universal was easily the first serious problem pattern I began seriously tackling on the site with comments to the effect of "please tell us your system, yes it's actually probably relevant to informing the solution"
I'd also like to point out that a contest with prizes was held in 2013 to increase use of rare system tags, and its effect was... that the percentage of D&D questions went up by 1%, compared to the previous year's 6% and the following year's 9%.
especially since in lieu of system people would assume D&D universality applies anyway
2014 held a 5th edition contest and the percentage of D&D questions went up 7%, compared to the previous year's 9% and the following year's 4%.
In 2012 there was meta talk about how to make sure rpg.se would be a popular resource for 5th edition users.
1:22 AM
@BESW this is where the contest that happened in 2014 got suggested
(must sleep, ttfn!)
@BESW Misread the chart here; 2013 went up 1% (because of the contest), 2014 went up 9%; 2015 went up 7%.
yeah, I think D&D universality is a factor in why I struggled a bit early on on this site -- some people were having trouble grasping that systemless RP is a thing in some circles
oh, hey there btw @linksassin
@Shalvenay G'day how's things?
@linksassin doing OK here, all things considered, as for you?
Pretty good. Not much to complain about.
1:28 AM
@linksassin mind if we talk a bit on Discord even?
@Shalvenay You're welcome to message me there anytime. I'm not always the quickest to respond but happy to talk.
1:41 AM
"Get Your Cozy Games Here," article by Paul Beakley for The Indie Game Reading Club, about the Cozy TTRPGs Bundle.
2:11 AM
@Someone_Evil Could I get a private chat room for a second?
super minor but wanted to clarify
(or @V2Blast)
2 hours later…
4:01 AM
@ThomasMarkov Oh no, I've been surpassed XD
2 hours later…
6:04 AM
Q: How do dndbeyond.com's dice work?

StuperUserThe character sheets on www.dndbeyond.com have the option to roll checks and to roll specific dice on the web page. How do these 3D animated dice work? Do they generate a random number and the animation follows it, or does the simulated throw generate the number? Are the rolls guaranteed to be r...

2 hours later…
7:55 AM
The Variable Engine by BJ Games. The world is not real: It is but an Engine created by mathematicians in the 19th century. BJ also wrote a twitter thread "about my new game and some of the decisions I made in design."
8:15 AM
BTW, re: rpg.se's D&D focus. I think it's important to remember that the Stack is designed, from the ground up, to optimize SEO. Which means that there's a strong positive reinforcement cycle encouraging a site to specialize in whatever gets it the most engagement. Which is D&D for us.
@Shalvenay Or, for that matter, that RPGs can work significantly differently than DnD does
DnD answers on non-DnD system questions are a recurring issue, if not particularly common (owing in part to non-DnD itself being fairly rare). Especially if the system's name or terminology bears a DnD resemblance, eg. Dungeon World.
It's also the reason why I think voting is a bad metric on actual answer quality
I feel if we didn't have the relatively "woke" mob muscle of the chat, the situation'd be a lot worse
I'm finding myself having some difficulty putting it into words, but I'm concerned that for systems outside the mainstream, the most popular answers by votes would be the ones that get the best reaction of the site visitors at large, that data suggests is the heavily DnD-influenced group of whom many are unaware how significantly different other games work on very fundamental levels, not the ones featuring actual expert opinions on the system.
8:37 AM
@kviiri As someone who came here for non-D&D, and only took a dive into D&D later/more recently, my impression is that non-D&D questions, and especially answers barely get any votes in comparison on average.
@kviiri You're absolutely right, and I've seen it happen. a lot. The only mitigating factor is the reduced amount of traffic to those questions in the first place.
@vicky_molokh-unsilenceMonica That's a part of the problem. With very low vote totals, it's relatively easy to get a bad answer to the top
And it's not just (as many including myself have asserted in the past) that the average TRPG player probably thinks of D&D first and foremost; it's that the Stack's SEO makes sure the lion's share of people coming here are in that category, so we get an even more D&D-skewed population over time.
To draw a comparison to another stack: BCG has (reportedly, I admit I don't browse it enough to have sufficient first-hand data) a similar situation with MTG dominating its Q&A feed, but at least they have the solace that MTG experts generally know their expertise is domain-specific and not applicable to, say, Candyland, Monopoly or Dominion.
@kviiri Well that's a bit of an 'if the government does not like its people, why would it not disband and elect a new people', eh?
People vote for answers which they find good based on their evaluations.
8:43 AM
@vicky_molokh-unsilenceMonica Yes, and that's the problem
If we want to provide expert answers for systems, we can't blindly trust non-expert opinion on what's an expert answer.
And the Stack's policies, like "pearls not sand," create a scenario where "expert" often means "expert in the Stack Exchange" as much or more than "expert in the subject of the Q&A."
Comparing to BCG, we shouldn't give MTG players the supreme authority of interpreting Monopoly rules just because there's more of them (on the site, at least).
Well, what would you consider a 'not-a-problem' state of affairs? Entrusting voting rights to a small group of experts (how do those get chosen?)? Some other state of things?
@kviiri Ah, that. Yeah, I remember suggesting a 'federalisation' back in the day, but that clearly has issues.
@vicky_molokh-unsilenceMonica I don't have a simple solution
Though we do have some good ideas floating around, like the citation requirements advanced by eg. @NautArch
(sorry if I'm misrepresenting your ideas @NautArch, feel free to correct me ^^)
@kviiri Oh I'm not even expecting people to know a solution that moves the situation towards a not-a-problem state. I'm just curious what the state is supposed to look like to not be seen as a problem.
8:49 AM
Well the ideal would be that every question gets a correct answer applicable to its own system, and that bad answers get either deleted or downvoted to oblivion consistently.
Personally I'd prefer if we could award increased reputation for rarer systems, but sadly no.
At least it's all just fake internet points anyway.
@kviiri Well we can, by bounties.
@kviiri yeah, I feel like there's no change to the existing system that would be drastic enough to root out the problems it's facing, they're baked in from the foundation up.
As for the problem of system-mismatching answers, like I implied before, I think we're fairly well-covered by the fact that we have a fairly large contingent of active users here in chat that have seen the "obviously DnD answer to completely different system" problem before, so we can kinda reliably do the "downvote to oblivion" thing
But targeted voting is already somewhat skirting the ideal of "just let the votes decide", some might consider it a dubious practice in general for answers that aren't clearly abusive, and it's dependent on us having this particular chatizen culture that happens to largely share the appreciation for non-mainstream content on the site.
There's certainly the other side of the coin that we are not representative of the target audience.
Neither are the voters.
9:03 AM
Well, depends on whether you perceive the target audience as 'federalised'.
I don't see any other sensible way to see that
Well, by design, a single stack is 'unitary', i.e. the whole audience is considered a single 'group'.
Yes, the design has a problem.
I've always played Counter Strike 1.6. So when I played newer call of duty games, it felt hard on my eyes. It is just because I was used to it, or newer games actually are very bright?
I think newer games are actually very bright
9:06 AM
Varies by game, I think.
I don't think there's any sense in considering, say, an Apocalypse World question's "target audience" to be anything else than people who play, or intend to play, or have other interest in Apocalypse World.
Certainly I wouldn't want to have any other group claim the authority to claim whether questions and answers were good.
@vicky_molokh-unsilenceMonica yes true, I do think they tend towards being a little brighter than say, 15-20 years ago
@kviiri While I do think 'federalising' the stack might have some benefits, I don't think it's necessarily a fair framework. Consider a creature which plays VtM and earned a kilorep. Then it sees a system-agnostic GM-technique question and answers that it finds helpful. Should it be denied voting rights on such questions, and go grind so SA and/or GMT rep before being able to vote? That seems unfair in practice.
@vicky_molokh-unsilenceMonica I played Call of Duty World at War. It looked very heavy on eyes. Maybe I wasn't used to it or what. I don't know.
@vicky_molokh-unsilenceMonica I'm not suggesting such
Certainly not a specific implementation
9:10 AM
@kviiri I may have trouble understanding what you mean by no other sensible way to see it then.
@vicky_molokh-unsilenceMonica What I mean is: whatever the site's technical functionalities may or may not be, the target audience for questions and answers concerning some game are people who have interest in that game, not site users at large.
Q: Is this homebrew version of Glassteel balanced?

Sam LacrumbI am not sure why the spell was not included in 5e. It's mostly used for flavor and cool factor. Glassteel Artificer, Wizard, Bard (Forge Cleric?) Transmutation Level: 3 Casting time: 1 minute Range: Touch Components: Glass to be transmuted Duration: 24 hours Saving Throw: none This spell give...

The distinction is somewhat important because of the chatizen mob muscle I mentioned earlier: we have some power to co-ordinate our behavior to better serve the true target audience of the question, not the audience the site provides naturally by its current design.
But with the caveats already mentioned earlier: (below)
24 mins ago, by kviiri
But targeted voting is already somewhat skirting the ideal of "just let the votes decide", some might consider it a dubious practice in general for answers that aren't clearly abusive, and it's dependent on us having this particular chatizen culture that happens to largely share the appreciation for non-mainstream content on the site.
I'm not sure what counts as a 'legitimate' interest in a game. If I, creature which neither played nor read Dungeon World, see an interesting title, read the question, see the answers, and think the answer has interesting insights that I read system-agnostically and think I might end up having a use for in my other games, is my interest valid enough for me to consider myself part of the audience of the question? (I suspect by your metric it is not.)
The whole discussion seems strangely parallel to the firstworlder saying that 'democracy is the worst form of government except all the others'.
9:40 AM
I get really strong devil's advocate vibes.
I've missed where we're getting 'legitimate' from
First of all, I have no idea where you're drawing the comparison to real-world democracy because we generally don't use real-world democracy to solve arbitrary problems.
If we had computer problems in my family, everyone'd ask me because I was the computer guy. We didn't collect to vote, because then everyone'd just have Ask toolbars all over the place.
Similarly, if I was the Apocalypse World guy in our family, I reckon everyone'd ask me if they wanted to know something in this game.
@kviiri something tells me the comparison is in the line of argument than the subject of the argument
"X is the worst of Y, except everything else in Y"
As for "what counts as legitimate interest", I think that's a red herring. The important thing is that we let people who are the actual experts in their respective topics answer the questions and that those answers are displayed the most prominently
When did we start talking about 'legitimate'? I couldn't see the progenitor comment
9:47 AM
Because again, the fact that currently DnD experts have the edge is nothing but a technical quirk of the site's design that doesn't reflect any practical purpose and that, if unmoderated, lets people claim other system expertise willy-nilly.
I suppose there might be some similarity. It's more of an 'I had a similar idea before, I even posted it on meta once, but in retrospect it probably was not as great as I first thought'. To a degree I am siding with the 'democratic' stack structure.

Stack seems to be built around 'who is an expert' being answered by asking 'who gets the most upvotes for Q&A found helpful by the audience of the stack'. Which is certainly imperfect, but seems to avoid some of the other ways in which expertise-assignment can get monopolised by special interest groups that do not care as much about actual expe
@AncientSwordRage Largely as a way to point out that while on one hand most people have interest in topics they read, there seems to be an implication that such interest may not be deemed sufficient as a criterion for being the actual intended audience of the question.
@kviiri There is some issue with that, and I certainly even spoke out against such issues. But I think it's a bigger issue with moderatory benefits like question-closing than with voting.
@vicky_molokh-unsilenceMonica We don't need clear lines. It's the pattern that matters, not whether individual users are "legitimate" or not.
And people can have interest in things while being massively misguided: see for example all the maths professors who answered wrong to the Monty Hall problem.
@vicky_molokh-unsilenceMonica One of the highest rep users on Sci-Fi has a large eBook collection and is good at finding information, I wouldn't say they aren't a legitimate X fan
Either I'm seeing a dilemma where there isn't one, or I'm having trouble reconciling the above three posts.
We all want 'good' answers, at least in patterns, but patterns are an emergent property. They emerge from whatever metrics the system uses to measure goodness of an answer. Yet there seems to also be a lot of fuzziness around what objectively measurable traits define a good answer.
(Same about metrics of expertise.)
1) Good answers are good, no matter how legitimate the answer is perceived to be
2) Users perceived as 'legitimate' do no necessarily give 'good answers'
3) Good answers from people perceieved as non-legitimate are still good
that is how I read those three posts
10:01 AM
@doppelgreener are we on track to match overall numbers of q%as?
Does SE/SO reward good answers with upvotes all the time? No
Currently, the metric of a good answer is 'one that gets lots of upvotes from people interested in the Q/A' and the metric of an expert is 'one who got lots of Internet Points from upvotes'.
that's not my metric
The site's metric. Currently.
true, but I think this is the point @kviiri and I are making
10:03 AM
But I suppose it's possible to envision a different metric.
I'm rejecting the site's metric, and substituting my own
E.g. 'upvotes from people who are experts in a specific tag' (though I don't think this is an appropriate metric, as it has some serious issues with grouping).
@AncientSwordRage /me nods its cephalothorax. 'What is that metric?'
@vicky_molokh-unsilenceMonica my entirely subjective opinion
10:20 AM
I'm baffled why an hour of conversation is being dedicated to repeatedly and clearly refuting a claim that was never made.
Currently the metric is votes, and currently the metric isn't all bad because we have a social layer built atop it (chat and to a lesser extent, meta) that nudges the results when someone makes a strong enough claim the voting isn't doing it's job right.
With the same caveats as mentioned above.
1 hour later…
11:23 AM
@Akixkisu if all quarters will be equal this year, we're on track to receive about 4,100 questions, 3,750 of them D&D, and 350 non-D&D
they won't be equal, but that's our current trajectory
@doppelgreener thanks
this is a finger-in-the-air estimate at best. if i wanted to make a more exact estimate, i'd break down each past year by quarter and see how we're performing compared to Q1 each previous year, for example.
the site does have yearly activity cycles
I took a look at our site anlaytics: full year (Jan 1 to Dec 31) with weekly averages. Typically Q1 and Q2 are the busiest, with a drop-off in August and another in November-December. This means Q3 is slower, and Q4 the slowest, with things picking back up again in January.
However, no surprise, 2020 was an exception to this pattern: it's got our normal January spike but from there activity just declines in a straight line with an exceptional spike in July.
(Seems to be a swell over May-August, which peaked in July, which seems to coincide with USA midyear break.)
11:39 AM
How much of the traffic is non-us centric?
I don't have any regional breakdown unfortunately.
I just see number of posts (questions, answers, and total), votes (up, down, both, accept), and traffic.
Traffic went in a straight line downhill over 2020 regardless of Q&A activity.
12:37 PM
@Medix2 It has happened.
@doppelgreener Was that a network wide phenomenon?
12:53 PM
@NautArch I see the same slide downward on board & card games, but it's not as pronounced. Meta.SE doesn't have appreciable difference. That's all the sites I have analytics for.
We have 86 unclosed game rec questions left.
@vicky_molokh-unsilenceMonica This is absolutely true. The voting consensus on my meta concluded that yes, a high score does in fact excuse a lack of support.
@Akixkisu I've been slacking on my 1 per day.
@ThomasMarkov we are approaching anumber where we can just close them all in a day without anyone getting angry.
@ThomasMarkov it did not conclude that as straightforwardly as you say:
A: Does a high score on an answer excuse the requirement to back up the answer?

Upper_CaseNo, it doesn't eliminate standards I'll start with a direct answer to the question as asked: no, a high score doesn't remove the need to adhere to community standards. The particular answer linked is not a good one, and your assessment of it as a comment (which would also not meet community stand...

@Akixkisu You underestimate my anger.
12:59 PM
@NautArch if we go by a rate of 1/day as we have been, then we can do the last 20 while you are in bed ;)
@Akixkisu Darnit!
@NautArch the real issue is that we have to somehow coordinate your sleep time with all of the other people that have an issue with closing off-topic questions in a batch.
@doppelgreener Idk, the theme I got from that answer (which I upvoted) was something like, "yeah, it should never have gotten that high in the first place, we generally do a good job now of dealing with answers like that, but we can let this one slide."
@ThomasMarkov same, if people decided, then it is that way.
You summarising the stance as that a high score excuses a lack of support is not appropriate, and it's disingenuous.
1:02 PM
@doppelgreener It seems pretty appropriate to KRyan's response, not Upper_Case's.
You opened that question that either everything's fine with this answer, or it's not fine and must be deleted, and therefore if we don't delete it we're saying it's fine. KRyan says that deleting it isn't the acceptable remedy, Upper_Case is pointing out every avenue you appeared to not consider.
Including the possibility that we don't like it and it's not acceptable, but also that doesn't mean we're obliged to delete it nor will be deleting it.
Either way, if KRyan's answer be representative of community opinion, then our guidance on supporting answers is incomplete.
Neither answer is saying "therefore everything's fine and yes, upvotes mean you don't have to source anything."
@ThomasMarkov .... It really isn't, to both those things
Please don't be disingenuous like this. Literally nobody is supporting "oh yeah also you can just ignore all this."
KRyan states: "being highly-upvoted doesn’t mean an answer is immune to our expectations—it means that, in the consensus opinion of the site, it meets them." Yet any reasonable reading of our guidance on supporting answers would conclude that that particular answer wasnt even close to meeting our expectations.
Not even KRyan's answer supports that.
1:08 PM
So the guidance needs to be updated so that anyone can read the guidance, read that answer, and say "yes, this meets our expectations".
.... That's not how it works.
I agree, that is definitely not how it works.
That's not even how KRyan is saying it works in the quote you provided.
If KRyan is correct, however, it is how it works.
KRyan is not engaging on the terms you're engaging with this.
You: "votes excuse meeting requirements." KRyan: "all answers need to meet requirements. Votes indicate people believe they have been met."
You: "lack of meeting requirements means this must be deleted." KRyan: "you don't have permission to make that call."
I disagree with KRyan on the second part.
1:11 PM
@doppelgreener And my response to that is that meta guidance needs to be updated to clearly cover that sort of answer, if it does indeed meet our expectations.
I very much disagree that votes indicate people believe requirements have been met.
I think he's only half right on the first part, and overall downvoted his answer.
@ThomasMarkov well, that doesn't mean it does actually such that there's is anything to update. This is why Uppercase is exploring all the different aspects of this situation.
If one gets away with not supporting an answer and mods decline to use the banner, you can open a meta about the specific question (something you didn't do, you asked about practice instead). If the meta-question results in an answer such that the specific answer stays, then it stays whether in conflict with other guidance or not.
Votes indicate people like an answer. It could be because the requirements are met, that the answer is correct, or that they simply 'like' it because it was amusing, funny, or relatable(but not necessarily correct or supported.)
@AncientSwordRage good reference
1:12 PM
This is, safe to say, a complex and difficult kind of scenario for the stack to handle, and being this reductive of people's responses to "obviously the answer is fine, community said so" is not appropriate or helpful.
@NautArch for sure
Okay but KRyan literally said "the consensus here seems to be that you are wrong, it does meet our expectations."
So maybe the question is: Should we handle answers that are exceptions to our norm exceptionally? Or do we just let them slide because the community liked them.
@NautArch Could not agree more
Argh. Planting apple trees this spring and we bought two of the same variety. That's not gonna pollinate.
Guess we're planting a third.
@Medix2 It's such an oddly specific motivation to assign to people who have likely never even read our citation expectations.
1:19 PM
@NautArch it is time to get that orchard going.
There's certainly more than one reason I downvoted that Meta answer
I might have put this in the q to tease someone rpg.stackexchange.com/questions/9871/…
Hey, at least some of the people whose views I most respect agreed with me in downvoting it.
The answer is problematic. UPC's is great.
@Akixkisu That feels like game identification
1:25 PM
@ThomasMarkov You appear to be viewing the citation expectations as some kind of hard and fast rule or policy. That isn't how things work around here, they are really more like guidelines. Answers that follow those guidelines are more likely to be well received. It doesn't mean that answers that don't follow them are automatically bad or worthy of deletion.
@Medix2 yup.
I'm just gonna retag it then and not close it
@Medix2 Robbing me of the experience to look at a certain meta to feel it validated, rude ;)
Wait isn't that like.... the whole reason game-rec and design intent were removed @linksassin
Because unsupported / incorrect answers were receiving upvotes when they should have been downvoted and deleted?
@Medix2 there's a big difference between this and "almost every answer to every one of these questions is systemically failing to meet our basic expectations"
1:28 PM
Also, I'd like those stars removed if anonymice would be so kind, thats not the sort of thing that makes sense in the side bar
@Medix2 That's a somewhat related but different issue. Those questions showed a pattern of attracting poor answers over a period of time.
the latter indicates the category of question is not working well here
that and we attempted things to try to resolve game rec that in hindsight made the situation worse
Oh that, yeah that's an excellent point. But I do think it shows that we do, at least sometimes want supported answers
of course
@Medix2 We always want supported answers. That doesn't immediately correlate to all unsupported answers should be deleted regardless of context.
1:30 PM
@linksassin :thumb-up:
@Medix2 uh, we could do the fun thing to argue about making game rec on topic again since we don't have any policy that goes against that - and our guidelines are just guidelines, and there is no power there whatsoever, wouldn't that be productive? :insert emoji with a pensive face:
@linksassin On the flipside, an unsupported and highly upvoted answer becomes a signpost that says "These answers are okay"
Which then leads to others having precedence and confirmation on answering like that, which most likely leads to sand and not pearls.
@NautArch You have NO idea how much I worry about that idea, but I've been repeatedly told my worrying is not needed
@NautArch And a post notice can help to mitigate that.
@ThomasMarkov It's something, yes.
1:32 PM
@Akixkisu I know you are joking, but those have actually been incorporated into the site "on-topic" definition which is one of the few rules the site does actually have.
Although taking it one more step, a notice that isn't acted on isn't very strong motivation.
@AncientSwordRage :I_got_that_reference:
Like I worry that having open questions that should be closed will become a signpost to somebody going "Oh, so I saw this question and it's open, and I have this similar question so here it is". But that... doesn't end up dealing much harm in the end other than the new asker possibly getting annoyed that they didn't know / it wasn't clear
@NautArch This is something I took action against fairly often when I had a diamond, but do it enough and community members start calling for your head. It's not fun.
@doppelgreener I feel you - whenever I try and do it the same response happens. HOwever, is that response the approach that we we want to dominate the site?
1:35 PM
@NautArch No, and it doesn't
At some point, like-minded users and mods may need to work together and ignore the cries.
But there will be some % of these we can't resolve
And the one time I saw somebody ask a game-rec question, citing an open game-rec question after theirs was closed as evidence that theirs should be open. Nothing much came from it after we explained that it too, should be closed
@Medix2 did that user return?
@Medix2 well, yes, that does happen, but it has us re-assess both and often close both
1:36 PM
Yup @NautArch
@ThomasMarkov The moderators have debated the value of adding a post notice to the answer we are discussing. Ultimately I decided that would adding the post notice would have a very low chance of getting the post changed. And would just serve as motivation for users who wanted us to action the deletion. Which I don't agree with.
Yeah so as much as there's the idea "We have X that doesn't match our standards, will people conclude X is okay?" is a worry. I think it will happen rarely enough, and people (on both sides) will generally be understanding enough, that nothing really happens from it. And so I have tried to stop worrying. Note: tried XD
@linksassin That transparency on this is a nice change. I appreciate the explanation.
@ThomasMarkov Big agree
1:38 PM
Post notices are useful where the poster sees them and then edits to rectify the issue. Or when we are happy to delete the answer in its current form.
That is a really difficult decision process. Not applying notices because we know they won't be acted on seems like a dangerous path to take.
@linksassin Seems like it leaves a weird void there in the middle.
If we know a user won't act, and that they should act, we really shouldn't let them keep on keepin' on.
@ThomasMarkov There is a limit to how transparent we can be. We aren't allowed/going to discuss disciplinary actions or other moderation activities that involve other users. Which was the cause of some of the radio silence on this issue.
In fact, those cases do seem like exceptions that need handling, not exceptions that don't need handling.
1:41 PM
@NautArch And we don't, but post notices aren't the tool for that situation. The mods monitor those situations and discuss the appropriate actions.
@linksassin My beef with the answer was entirely user-agnostic, but I get that my beef coincided with other issues that were being dealt with.
@linksassin What other appropriate actions are there? That level of transparency and understanding would go a long way in these situations.
@NautArch Well... I assume you've seen their reputation
@Medix2 I don't know if that's tied to the answer or something else. ANd I understand that it can't be discussed :) But a suspension seems like an odd decision for this situation.
But if that punishment was for something that happened while discussing this situation, that would be appropriate - but it isn't related to the actual situation.
That's a user situation. This is an answer situation.
@Medix2 the initial interactions went down before that happened.
1:44 PM
@NautArch In cases where we feel a Post notice will be ignored or fail to communicate the extent of the issue we can use private messaging to contact the user. We typically use this method when we are dealing with a pattern of behaviour rather than a single instance.
I always forget the search operator that excludes locked questions.
@linksassin Okay, I don't really understand how you expect that communication to go. If you know they aren't going to change it, what does communicating do?
Don't ask for a roll if the outcome is obvious :)
@Medix2 nah, it is just locked:0
@NautArch Basically it's an "official warning". We aren't allowed to make threats or ultimatums, but we can lay out our expectations and our problems with their current patterns of behaviour.
1:48 PM
You'd think one could put operators in their custom filters.
Do any of you use custom filters at all?
If they continue to ignore that, then we can take more direct disciplinary action. Thankfully in most cases, the problem stops at the contact stage. It's amazing how often users simply don't recognise there is an issue with what they are doing.
@linksassin the recognition - pointing out issue is also two-way.
@NautArch Focusing on the answer itself. I personally do not think it is worthy of deletion. I have neither upvoted or downvoted it. Could it be more complete? Yes, of course. However it does quote the official rulebook (citation was added later) and makes a logical, though thinly supported deduction from that quote. Is it conjecture? Maybe, however that question won't get a definite answer as it isn't covered by official rules. Therefore educated conjecture is kind of the best thing available
@Akixkisu I'm not certain I fully understand your meaning. If you are saying it gives an opportunity for the user to explain their side of the issue yes. If you are saying issues need to be pointed out to us, that is what flags are for. If user's feel they need more space than that, they can request a private chat room to explain their concerns.
@linksassin isn’t “here’s what I did in my game and here’s how it went” the best thing available (and also exactly what our guidance calls for)?
@ThomasMarkov Yes that is true, however it's a fairly niche issue that I doubt many, if any, users have had experience handling at their table. This is why we can't have that expectation be a hard requirement. Personally I believe it is better that users get answers from experience DMs who can make informed guesses with how a solution will work out, than to delete all answers until someone with that each niche experience comes along.
1:59 PM
@NautArch I planted a trio a few years back and every spring I have the same thought: "oh, I guess I forgot to learn how to prune for another year...."
@linksassin I'm sure that you do not understand the full meaning as it a complex and personal issue to which you have little insight, and you probably have no interest in dealing with, so I'll spare you that. But the gist of it is that communication is at least two way - one is recognising, but the other is expressing an issue in a way that communicates the issue to a person in a way such that they empathise with the one/group who tries to convey the issue.
@linksassin This is the kind of thing I think is missing from our guidance. You make a good point - some measure of experience with related things equips you to make an educated guess, so to speak, and that sort of answer may be valuable. But our guidance does not carve out a space for that kind of answer.
@linksassin I very much disagree. Their original answer was clearly supposed to be more of a joke. The link was added because of our demands, but it supports the joke and not an actual answer.
@Akixkisu Ok sure. I'd like to think that our private messages give us the forum to do that. Often the mod team will work together to craft messages to make our communication as clear as possible to limit the risk of misinterpretation on the recipients part.
@ThomasMarkov The citation guidelines I wrote are not an allowlist. They are there to guide people to succeed on our sites, as well as to do the explaining people have to do regularly so they can just point to it instead.
They are Just Guidance.
2:06 PM
@NautArch That's fine. I do understand that viewpoint. However I don't agree with it strongly enough to think it warrants the use of mod powers to curate.
@doppelgreener And linksassin makes a valid point about a kind of answer that may prove valuable, so there should be guidance toward that sort of answer.
@linksassin yup, and failing to craft a message in a way such that a specific user will receive it well is part of the course. In some cases, that failure will create bad blood for years to come.
@ThomasMarkov Are we talking about the citation guidance?
@doppelgreener I was, yes
@ThomasMarkov This comes back to the point I was trying to make earlier. The guidelines should be viewed more as "If I want to make a well cited answer, what should I do?" than "Any answer that doesn't do this is bad"
2:10 PM
@linksassin And Im saying that if there is a space of good answers not covered by our guidance, it should be covered.
That's guidance on how to provide citation, which the answer was revised to do. I can't advise on "how to make answers that are good".
@doppelgreener Apologies. I have corrected my statement. I meant to only imply it was advice on how to cite an answer well.
@linksassin Why are we adding notices and deleting things based on a failure to follow advice?
What needs to be cited and the degree of citation is left as an exercise for community judgement, also. Thin-on-the-ground citation can be an issue. Sometimes it's literally all we can manage because there simply isn't much we can cite.
If we delete answers based on failing to follow that guidance, that guidance is much more than just advice.
2:15 PM
(such issues usually fall back to "what tends to work well" and sometimes we need to cite actual experience, or sometimes it's something so basic and common nobody expects citation for it.)
I ... really can't deal with how non-accommodating you're being for nuance here
@ThomasMarkov There is a varying standard. Some posts are so poorly supported and just generally bad that they fail to actually address the question, therefore qualifying as "not an answer" and grounds for removal. Some are borderline and just need a nudge, which is where comments or a post-notice can help.
Do I really have to explain that we have quality expectations and I am simply trying to provide guidance on them and that my post is not the quality expectations themselves?
@doppelgreener Then why is the title of the question "What are the citation expectations of answers on RPG Stack Exchange?"
Because that's the question?
So your answer doesnt answer the question?
2:18 PM
There is a lot of judgement and context information that goes into how we respond to flags on answer. It's not something that I can easily put into words, but after you review enough of them you get a feeling for the posts where a banner will be beneficial, the ones that should just be straight up deleted. And the ones that should be left alone or left for the community to review.
... I'm going to step away. I can't deal with this.
The answer is not exhaustive.
And yes, we should add to it.
@Akixkisu Right, and I'm failing to understand why Im getting pushback for suggesting the answer could be made to cover more ground.
@ThomasMarkov Doppelgreener's answer does not present an official answer on what those expectations are, no answer on meta can really do that, simply due to the nature of how stack exchange works.
@ThomasMarkov If you have meaningful improvements to make to the answer, you have the rights to edit that post to improve it. Or post your own answer to the question with the missing view points if you feel you would need to change too much of the answer.
@ThomasMarkov You are doing so by employing a rhetoric strategy that comes with an unstainable emotional cost and thus is not suited to the task.
2:22 PM
Is there an official answer anywhere?
Because the emotional cost is unsustainable, you receive pushback.
@ThomasMarkov No. The closest thing is the help centre advice on answering.
No one has the authority to provide an official answer. Not even the mods. Because we aren't a dictatorship or even a democracy, we are a community that is run and curated by it's users. Those users together decided the norms and expectations of the site.
2:39 PM
I want to play NathanS Four Elements Monk some day. But there is only so much game time.
@KorvinStarmast Dont bet on NathanS updating that answer: Last seen Oct 13 '20 at 22:33
@ThomasMarkov We've had longer absences come back to be active users.
@NautArch Rough! I really want to put in pear trees, but the two-variety need makes it annoying. And I'm just too slightly far North for my favorite kind of pear to grow in my yard
@Upper_Case the tangible issue of planting pear trees is that you tempt by walkers to commit the heinous sin of pear theft.
@Akixkisu And they would, too. I live near a popular walking route, and I certainly struggle to resist a D'Anjou pear just sitting there, undefended
2:56 PM
:57574584 one knows it is foul, and they love it - one loves their undoing.
I prefer stealing apples, tbh.
But there are more of those around to steal, I suppose.
@Akixkisu When I was 2.5 years old, my family moved into a new house and the next door neighbor grew apples in his back yard. Apparently the first thing I did when we arrived there (like, within three minutes) was wander into his yard and steal as many apples as I could hold
@Upper_Case I did the same but with carrots that one of the neighbours had in a little decorative plot at the end of the street. As my father likes to tell me, I bragged about how many carrots I gathered in the wild.
@Upper_Case Not super happy about buying a third, but it is what it is.
@Akixkisu Maybe there is an... acquisitiveness towards produce which is correlated with interest in TTRPGs
@NautArch At least you'll have lots of apples! What varieties are you growing?
@Upper_Case honey crisp and pink lady
3:07 PM
@Upper_Case A niche market for produce heist TTRPGs marketed for children, whether young or old?
@Upper_Case Well, I must be the outlier then, since I hate most food that grown on trees
@NautArch Delicious! I've always loved honey crisps, nice for eating and maybe for cider, too
@Akixkisu Like Honey Heist, but for apples
@Akixkisu We'll be rich! Or at least we would be, if one of the organizing traits for the group is a penchant for theft
@Upper_Case Yeah, they're delicious! My son (pre-invisalign) was eating 5-6 apples/day. Getting tired of buying apples.
3:09 PM
@BaconyRevanant But of the tree-grown produce you do like, would you steal some without getting all hung up on ideas about "property" and "ethics"?
@NautArch Lol, I guess "an apple a day" only works with non-orthodontic doctors
@Upper_Case No, because the few that I do like I still don't like enough to commit petty theft for
Now, if I could walk onto a ranch and just steal a porterhouse out of a cow...
@BaconyRevanant Hm. Well, TTRPGs are a big tent. Big enough for people who aren't reflexive produce thieves, I guess...
@Upper_Case Glad to know you'll still put up with me :p
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