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SOLICITING FEEDBACK : NEW MEMBER EXPERIENCE - Page 6

post #76 of 341
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by enga View Post
 

Heath I just want you to know I have tried to be encouraging to new members when I was also "new". I was told by several other members that nobody wants rainbows,unicorns or puppies.What is SO wrong about being nice to people? I was attacked for trying to be considerate of others and asking people to do the same. It's not fair that so many members should be afraid to post or ask questions that have been on here for years.

 

There is a thinly veiled gang like mentality on CC and I'm so tired of members pretending that is doesn't not exist. They are rude and condescending with their replies and they know it but when you've got 3 or more fellow members agreeing that the reply wasn't mean or condescending. What can the OP do about it?  If they defend themselves they are attacked or sarcastically made fun of. It's not fair that they should continually be able to get away with this outright bullying of new members or new posters.

 

I sure you have noticed that attendance has declined on CC. This is a big problem and it needs to be stopped. It's not ALL about pricing and repetitive questions that make them reply rudely because of their "impatience" or "annoyance". Most of it seems like it's about having fun humiliating  and attacking people for their own twisted pleasure IMHO.

 

Personally it sounds like the site needs more rainbows, unicorns and puppies.  Maybe that should be the next inspiration challenge :D

 

Attendance is not down, though maybe the lurking has increased.

 

There is certainly no place here for a gang mentality, bullying, etc.  But more people need to speak up when it is happening.  More people need to come to me or a moderator and raise concern about specific members who are engaging in rude behavior.

 

There was a time at CC when we used to ban a LOT of people in order to keep things super positive.  We backed off that approach at some point and decided to let the community tell us what was acceptable by way of the report post function.

 

Clearly this has not worked as it seems that some group of members have decided to take a gang like approach. (I am not referring to anyone specifically, just reflecting the feedback I am getting from people in response to this thread, I don't know who those members are or how many of them there are).

 

Well I can tell you we are about to take matters back into our hands of making sure this community has the tone it started with and was meant to have.  People can get on board and be positive and supportive or they will be shown the door.

 

Again, lets leave the pricing debate out of this thread, it is obvious that it is its own topic to be addressed separately.

 

This thread is about what we as the Admins and moderators of CC need to create or organize in order to bring new people more smoothly into the community and reduce the friction of getting up to speed and being welcomed as a new member to the club of cake enthusiasts.  This should also improve the experience for existing members and expand your pool of cake buddies.

post #77 of 341
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by shanter View Post
 

 

This ^^^^^^^^^

 

[Going back to stealth mode.]

How does this help us improve the experience?  Saying you don't find value is one thing, but this thread is not a survey of why you stop using CC, it is a survey of how to make it better so you and others would find value in it.

post #78 of 341
Is there something going on with this thread? Or am I just having issues with my iPad? I keep seeing new posts and then they disappear. (Sorry this is off topic, but I'm just wondering if I'm having a stroke or something.)
post #79 of 341
Quote:
Originally Posted by Heath View Post
 

I think you greatly underestimate the difficulty in finding people with the time, temperament and desire to do this.  We did attempt to ramp up the moderator pool because the mods we had were getting burned out.  It is just difficult to find people who want to stick with that kind of volunteer effort, especially when community members give them a hard time about their moderating decisions.

 

Also there are so many new posts a day it is not reasonable to ask moderators to read everything.  This is why we have the REPORT POST function, so that the community can bring problem conversations to the attention of the moderators.

 

But also remember that it is not always so black and white and can be incredibly time consuming to have to go through a conversation that quickly escalates into multiple pages of rudeness, to have to figure out who all got out of line, delete posts, deal with the members, etc.  Just one bad conversation can end up taking hours of moderator time to clean up, issue infractions, deal with members who are upset about infractions, etc.

 

There are members who share a lot of valuable information, but sometimes get impatient and don't always keep it polite during their annoyance.  Changing behavior in adults is a difficult if not impossible thing, so trying to make the community work for everyone requires solutions that approach it from both sides.

 

Anyway, this thread is not about moderators and it is not about pricing, it is about ideas to smooth out the new member experience.  Cake Central is all about empowering people to get started in cake and to develop as artists.  If we scare off new people in the first moments, how are we fulfilling that mission..  That is the purpose of this thread.  


I wrote what I did from experience. I was a moderator of the Pastry & Baking Forum at eGullet.com. They had a system and it worked quite well. People are not able to 'police' themselves, if so- society wouldn't have any police. Also there are people who volunteer to moderate for free (I did) and I'm sure there are quite a few people who would love to moderate here. It's far easier to change a few people than to change everyone's natural newbie behavior. Yes, trying to work on solutions for both sides makes great sense!

 

A website with this much activity needs at least a 15 to 20 moderators and 3 or 4 supervisors of the moderators. The website owners need to have a structure just like any other business.

 

"~~There are members who share a lot of valuable information, but sometimes get impatient and don't always keep it polite during their annoyance. Changing behavior in adults is a difficult if not impossible thing, so trying to make the community work for everyone requires solutions that approach it from both sides." When adults know the rules and the rules are ALWAYS enforced Equally with an non partial hand, the vast majority of people comply. There are always a small bunch of people who don't respond who need  constant reminders to calm down and some do need to be exiled from the community. It's all about structure and consistency.

 

If you really mean that you want to make things better; just like us old timers here suggest to newbies to talk to others in similar situations or to other people who have already mastered what your trying to master, have you tried talking to other websites and asking them how they solved the same issues? CC is not the first nor the only website to have these issues.

post #80 of 341
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by as you wish View Post

Is there something going on with this thread? Or am I just having issues with my iPad? I keep seeing new posts and then they disappear. (Sorry this is off topic, but I'm just wondering if I'm having a stroke or something.)

I deleted some off-topic posts.

post #81 of 341
Quote:
Originally Posted by as you wish View Post

Is there something going on with this thread? Or am I just having issues with my iPad? I keep seeing new posts and then they disappear. (Sorry this is off topic, but I'm just wondering if I'm having a stroke or something.)

No it's happening to me too
post #82 of 341
Quote:
Originally Posted by Heath View Post

I deleted some off-topic posts.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cakealicious7 View Post

No it's happening to me too
Oh, okay! Thanks! icon_smile.gif
post #83 of 341

Oh goodness...can we please address the Rainbow Unicorns vs. the Mean Ogres.

 

This usually comes up when someone posts a wreck of a cake that they plan on selling someone or on a post about a cake disaster asking if they should refund.

 

While I will agree with the Unicorns that there is a nice way of saying things, I also agree with the Dream Crushers that sometimes give honest criticism serves EVERYONE better than turning a blind eye.

 

I really do think there is room for everyone here.  That is what makes not only the world but also the CC community go 'round.

 

We ALL need to stop making a mountain out of a mole hill, stop looking for snarky, and start being an honest community whose goal is to encourage but not blindly.

www.VeryDeliciousDesserts.com

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Delicious-Desserts/207874222593145

 

It's never "just cake!"

 

You may get a cake for $way to little but you won't get this cake!

Animal
(4 photos)
 
Reply

www.VeryDeliciousDesserts.com

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Delicious-Desserts/207874222593145

 

It's never "just cake!"

 

You may get a cake for $way to little but you won't get this cake!

Animal
(4 photos)
 
Reply
post #84 of 341
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stitches View Post
 


I wrote what I did from experience. I was a moderator of the Pastry & Baking Forum at eGullet.com. They had a system and it worked quite well. People are not able to 'police' themselves, if so- society wouldn't have any police. Also there are people who volunteer to moderate for free (I did) and I'm sure there are quite a few people who would love to moderate here. It's far easier to change a few people than to change everyone's natural newbie behavior. Yes, trying to work on solutions for both sides makes great sense!

 

A website with this much activity needs at least a 15 to 20 moderators and 3 or 4 supervisors of the moderators. The website owners need to have a structure just like any other business.

 

"~~There are members who share a lot of valuable information, but sometimes get impatient and don't always keep it polite during their annoyance. Changing behavior in adults is a difficult if not impossible thing, so trying to make the community work for everyone requires solutions that approach it from both sides." When adults know the rules and the rules are ALWAYS enforced Equally with an non partial hand, the vast majority of people comply. There are always a small bunch of people who don't respond who need  constant reminders to calm down and some do need to be exiled from the community. It's all about structure and consistency.

 

If you really mean that you want to make things better; just like us old timers here suggest to newbies to talk to others in similar situations or to other people who have already mastered what your trying to master, have you tried talking to other websites and asking them how they solved the same issues? CC is not the first nor the only website to have these issues.

I do understand what you are saying and I have a lot of experience in online community management plus a network of other forum owners we collaborate with.

 

We have attempted to grow the moderator base here, and as I mentioned our moderators are unpaid volunteers.  The problem is that we have not have enough volunteers to be moderators.  Moderators burn out, so you get turnover and it is hard to find people how have the time, knowledge and temperament to do the job.  Being a good moderator is hard and the community rarely shows appreciation for the work the moderators do, so it can often be unrewarding.  Getting 15-20 moderators would be awesome, but we have never come close to that kind of interest from qualified community members.

post #85 of 341

Being a moderator is a very difficult and challenging job.  It is also usually a thankless one.  I know.  I've done it.

 

A GOOD moderator will apply the guidelines fairly, judge impartially, and be as unemotional as is humanly possible.

 

A GOOD member will be thoughtful, encouraging, helpful, and tell the truth even when it hurts. 

 

Then, there's Godot....our comic relief and google search guru.

 

Personalities are going to clash.  People are going to ruffle feathers and disagree.  

 

As I'm writing all of this and thinking of all I have read today, I almost want to give up.  Almost any words can be twisted and turned to mean the opposite of the meaning.  There must be a happy medium that allows us to be ourselves without everyone getting so easily offended.

 

I DO think we need a navigation for new members.  I really do.  

 

I also think new members need to take some accountability.  Whenever joining a new forum, the first thing anyone should do is hang out and see how things work.

 

Oh I have a headache!

www.VeryDeliciousDesserts.com

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Delicious-Desserts/207874222593145

 

It's never "just cake!"

 

You may get a cake for $way to little but you won't get this cake!

Animal
(4 photos)
 
Reply

www.VeryDeliciousDesserts.com

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Delicious-Desserts/207874222593145

 

It's never "just cake!"

 

You may get a cake for $way to little but you won't get this cake!

Animal
(4 photos)
 
Reply
post #86 of 341
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by DeliciousDesserts View Post
 

Oh goodness...can we please address the Rainbow Unicorns vs. the Mean Ogres.

 

This usually comes up when someone posts a wreck of a cake that they plan on selling someone or on a post about a cake disaster asking if they should refund.

 

While I will agree with the Unicorns that there is a nice way of saying things, I also agree with the Dream Crushers that sometimes give honest criticism serves EVERYONE better than turning a blind eye.

 

I really do think there is room for everyone here.  That is what makes not only the world but also the CC community go 'round.

 

We ALL need to stop making a mountain out of a mole hill, stop looking for snarky, and start being an honest community whose goal is to encourage but not blindly.

 

 

I don't fully agree with this.. as a person who actually sees the reported posts, there are plenty of times where rudeness, pettiness and ganging up take place in totally unnecessary ways.  

 

And I disagree with the idea that there is room for everyone here.  There is room for everyone who wants to be polite, respectful, and welcoming here.  For people who do not want to interact that way there are other forums to go to.  

 

This is not an issue of honest critic, it is an issue of unnecessary blantent rudeness.

 

This thread  is about what the Admins and Moderators can put in place to make it an easier on-boarding experience for new members to integrate positively to the community.

post #87 of 341
Quote:
Originally Posted by Heath View Post
 

 

 

 there are plenty of times where rudeness, pettiness and ganging up take place in totally unnecessary ways.  

 

 

 

 

Happens from both Unicorns and Dream Crushers alike.  It absolutely happens.  It shouldn't happen.

 

However, there are MANY times that someone tries to give honest advice or criticism and someone rushes right in to call someone else a big Meanie!

www.VeryDeliciousDesserts.com

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Delicious-Desserts/207874222593145

 

It's never "just cake!"

 

You may get a cake for $way to little but you won't get this cake!

Animal
(4 photos)
 
Reply

www.VeryDeliciousDesserts.com

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Delicious-Desserts/207874222593145

 

It's never "just cake!"

 

You may get a cake for $way to little but you won't get this cake!

Animal
(4 photos)
 
Reply
post #88 of 341
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by DeliciousDesserts View Post
 

 

 

Happens from both Unicorns and Dream Crushers alike.  It absolutely happens.  It shouldn't happen.

 

However, there are MANY times that someone tries to give honest advice or criticism and someone rushes right in to call someone else a big Meanie!

 

Sure I don't doubt that either.  There are always going to be people overly sensitive in both directions.  It will never all go away, but we can all make it a goal to minimize the unnecessary conflicts, just remember why everyone is here to begin with, focus on common goals and interest and get along.

 

The growth of the cake community is good for everyone in it.  More participants means more support and inspiration.  It also means more incentive for manufacturers to invest in new and interesting tools as the customer base grows.. It means more tv shows, more events, more everything cake.

 

Existing cake makers should be excited when they see new people interested in cake as we all benefit from the continued growth and vitality of the cake community.

post #89 of 341
I suppose that it is like the old saying. "a joke is only funny if everyone laughs" miscommunication is easy with JUST the written word. The trick is being able to make the right move or say the right thing to clear the misunderstanding.
Striving for perfection causes disappointment while doing all things to the best of your ability ensures satisfaction.
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Striving for perfection causes disappointment while doing all things to the best of your ability ensures satisfaction.
Reply
post #90 of 341
Quote:
Originally Posted by Heath View Post

We have attempted to grow the moderator base here, and as I mentioned our moderators are unpaid volunteers.  The problem is that we have not have enough volunteers to be moderators.  Moderators burn out, so you get turnover and it is hard to find people how have the time, knowledge and temperament to do the job.  Being a good moderator is hard and the community rarely shows appreciation for the work the moderators do, so it can often be unrewarding.  Getting 15-20 moderators would be awesome, but we have never come close to that kind of interest from qualified community members.

Other sites aren't paying their moderators either. It's up to the website owners to show their appreciation for their work. Make it a badge of honor for people to become moderators/hosts. At eGullet they asked people they thought would be good moderators- to be them, they didn't wait for someone to volunteer. Heck, I never would have thought to just volunteer to be a moderator. Do you have a post somewhere on the site asking people to volunteer?

 

What about dividing the work into two groups. Some people just moderate the behavior (by pm to problem posters) and some volunteers act as hosts (to newbies). If you've been warned x number of times and you behavior doesn't improve your membership is revoked. Than it's not a guessing game for members, they know one more time and they are out. 

 

Yes moderators get burnt out. But giving them too much work with-out enough co-workers to help/support them, speeds up the burn out!! It's not unusual to have 2 to 3 moderators for every 3 or 4 threads, so each moderator only has to read a few threads everyday. No moderator can read more than that daily and still enjoy participating and involving members in the site.

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