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When moderators lose it

damage control

3:56 am on May 18, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Just tonight, on my forum, I had a Moderator totally lose it, without any warning. In the Moderators forum I have a set of rules:

#7 As moderators, you represent this website.

Please keep your conduct professional and courteous. If you do not have a thick skin...then moderating is not for you. I should never have to get an email/sticky-mail because of a rude remark or post or edit from a moderator. One warning is all that will be given. You may disagree with a post, but if it does not break our TOS, please keep your opinion to yourself.

Well...I just gave out a warning and since I noted that many people had viewed his post I snipped it and said "<please see the Moderators forum>". Now, since he moderates more than one forum, I removed his moderating ability from this one forum. We'll have a little chat in the private area, but I intend to leave the <snipped-please see the Moderators forum> visible, including the totally reasonable response from a flabbergasted member. I feel this transparency is crucial to credibility.

Too harsh?

4:42 am on May 18, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Not too harsh at all. Rules that apply for the members should apply doubly for the moderators, IMHO.

If a moderator goes over the deep end, then a visible slap on the wrists is definitely in order. Everyone has a bad day, so you might be able to let it go at that.

2:42 pm on May 18, 2004 (gmt 0)


WebmasterWorld Administrator rogerd is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

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"When Mods Attack", coming soon on the Discovery Channel... ;)

Your response seems balanced. Some forums might move the whole exchange out of view to avoid any hint of public nasty behavior.

This is a good reason to limit mod powers - you don't want someone going bonkers who has supermod or admin rights for your whole forum.

One thing I've seen happen is relatively well-balanced mods being goaded into losing their temper by a particular member. Sometimes, you'll have a member who knows what buttons to push to produce that kind of reaction. Afterwards, the mod may well apologize to you and admit he had a momentary lapse.

3:01 pm on May 18, 2004 (gmt 0)

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WebmasterWorld Senior Member lorax is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

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Scott I think the transparency is very important. Your membership will hear of the incident and I think for them to see it dealt with professionally and evenly will go a long way with establishin your forums' credibility and reputation for fairness.
12:09 am on May 19, 2004 (gmt 0)

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I would entirely agree, Scott. It's extremely important to the sense of COMMUNITY that your members NOT be left even partially in the dark. At least a few people saw the poor-spirited post; you simply cannot at that point sweep the debris under the rug and continue as if it never occurred. You don't WANT to add to the dreck-and-dree, but you also want to let everyone, including the offender, know that damage control is a priority.

I think you did exactly right! And that's not only from the POV of a forum-master, but the POV of a member and frequent poster on a great number and variety of forums as well.

2:06 am on June 4, 2004 (gmt 0)

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When that happens, its good to contact the moderator with a PM or email and explain to them that they are in a position of leadership, and one thing that people respect in a leader is the abilily to admit wrong. People respect someone in a position of power or leadership that is humble enough to know when theyve made a mistake and can admit it.