FR's atmosphere currently.

All announcements, suggestions and questions about the community forum.
Locked
User avatar
philosophyfox
Member
Member
Posts: 3702
Joined: Fri Aug 11, 2006 6:05 pm
Location: Hull, United Kingdom
Contact:

FR's atmosphere currently.

Post by philosophyfox » Mon Apr 04, 2011 5:54 pm

I've noticed a huge change in Fancy-Rats' atmosphere recently, and it's been troubling me for some time. I know sometimes I can be argumentative from time to time, and I forget that it's a person behind a keyboard, but I am more aware that a lot of people are feeling unhappy with the atmosphere. It's rubbing off on me as I find myself snapping from time to time and having to apologise a few posts later.

We all come here for one thing: rats. It's their care, their health and talking about them (especially if our families and friends are fed up of us yacking their ears off) that, at the end of the day, we all end up here. Some of us have made good friends with other forum members. Some of us have found our rats through this forum. Some of us enjoy sharing our crafts or ratty finds. Some of us enjoy mixing rat foods, showing off our new litters, discussing genetics or discussing showing.

However I've noticed recently the absence or discomfort of some people as they have found it is a place they are no longer happy to be. I don't like that some of the people I respect or admire or care about don't feel comfortable taking part in an internet forum they obviously once loved and cared about, or that they feel they can't use this place for help regarding their rats.

It's sad, and one of the reasons I think the atmosphere has become so different is that there is minimal moderation. I am in no way having 'a go' at the moderators, I know they have lives away from the keyboard, and possibly are feeling a drain from FR themselves etc. However, I feel if the forum is going to continue to be the best forum for rat care (which I sincerely do believe it is) then we need a more visible moderation process. And I feel the rest of us need to moderate ourselves a little more (as I say myself included!) whilst FR gets over this blip, like any other families have.

For me FR is a kind of family, one who I care about and don't want to see being pushed apart for reasons that seem simple to fix. Let us all talk more and judge less.
Moth :dumbo: Slug :dunce: Bug :smileyrat: Grub :smileyrat:
Missing: Ziggy Tribble Fiver Gumbo Rowdy Hige Toboe Tate Lyle Steven Daisy Crunchie Gaelan

User avatar
Rat@2E
Member
Member
Posts: 876
Joined: Tue Apr 27, 2010 7:27 pm

Re: FR's atmosphere currently.

Post by Rat@2E » Mon Apr 04, 2011 6:53 pm

I’ve only been around here for a short while and can’t say that I’ve noticed a huge difference in the majority of subject areas. I suppose that I am a bit more hesitant to post on contentious issues, but I’d put that down to being busy. I know my own opinions, I’m happy with them and can’t be bothered to argue for days with someone who is perfectly entitled to disagree with me.

I agree that the moderators need to have a life outside of the forum. However, the best form of moderation is self-moderation. That’s moderation in the language and tone that we use and collective moderation to ensure that people making offensive posts or launching personal attacks are reminded by other forum members that their behavior is not acceptable. If a person continues to behave in a manner that appears unreasonable, they should be reported to the ‘formal’ moderators.

There will always be issues that cause contention on any forum. For example, on this forum, using the words ‘pet, shop’ and ‘rescue’ in the same post is guaranteed to trigger a mass excursion on the Outrage Express. However, debating different views is healthy and informative, as long as it’s done in a constructive and respectful way. This forum has a very mixed audience, so perhaps needs a bit more thought than other forums before pressing ‘Submit’.
"Like a coiled string !"

Residing in the Explorer: Bella, Babs, Molly, Maisie and Husky.
RIP: Tosca, Spud, Pinky, Tilly, Beech Boy, Littlest Rat, Fay.

User avatar
Golgotha_tramp
Member
Member
Posts: 850
Joined: Sat Feb 20, 2010 1:40 pm
Location: Nottingham

Re: FR's atmosphere currently.

Post by Golgotha_tramp » Mon Apr 04, 2011 7:14 pm

I have found that recently I have been more and more reluctant to join in on conversations and tend to lurk more. It's sad, I still come everyday but I seem to be more and more worried of getting involved.

I think some people seem to now be on permanent alarm, defensive automatically and aggressive. Post seem to drag on and on saying the same point over and over with everyone just getting more and more het up.

I know that it wasn't perfect before but it does seem to be getting worse and I really don't know what to do as I feel like I have friends here but the negativity is really getting me down. :cry:
Alex & The boys - Cathode, Sammy, Romulus, Remus, Sherman, Bohater, Rube and Fenrir.
Gone but not forgotten - :halo: Anode :dumbohalo: Fred

User avatar
Betterstar
Member
Member
Posts: 3952
Joined: Fri May 18, 2007 4:01 pm
Location: N. Yorks

Re: FR's atmosphere currently.

Post by Betterstar » Mon Apr 04, 2011 7:19 pm

Rat@2E wrote:people making offensive posts or launching personal attacks are reminded by other forum members that their behavior is not acceptable.
Unfortunately the problem with this is that it can often come across as bullying, especially if multiple members get involved. I can see what you're saying and in theory I completely agree, but I don't think the internet can be entirely self moderated. It's so easy to get opinionated and forget that you're potentially hurting someone's feelings. I would like to see admin around FR a little more again too, someone (can't remember who!) recently said that the admin here are becoming like dictators which really made me laugh since I've seen very little moderation of late and we appear to be falling apart!

I'd be very interested to read what people think of this, it's certainly something I've been feeling recently - reluctant to post on threads asking for opinions and offer advice for fear of things descending into argument, and feeling [a word inbetween picked on and bullied] by some members on and off the forum. Not the forum I love :(
Sian & Boojum, Minnow, Poot, Esme, Oak, Burdock, Ptarmigan, Blunder and Jacques.
Missing Hugo, Krindle, Dandelion, Baron, Winder, Snark, Snapcase, Snufkin, Twirl, Somer, Musket, Hodgkins, Urs.

User avatar
Marianimal
Member
Member
Posts: 1790
Joined: Tue May 27, 2008 12:21 pm
Location: Box, Wiltshire

Re: FR's atmosphere currently.

Post by Marianimal » Mon Apr 04, 2011 7:26 pm

I know I tend to lurk a lot more than I post, but I'm reluctant to post a lot of the time because of the unpleasantness that tends to happen - especially recently! I have been genuinely shocked at how rude and unkind people have been. Another thing that I find really irritating is when people have asked for specific advice and then the thread degenerates into members going completely off topic and attacking each other / making personal comments, which are completely unnecessary.
FP Girls, Oldies, Pink Wrinklies and Wrinkle Men II.
Sleep tight everyone else.

kit
Member
Member
Posts: 40
Joined: Wed Feb 02, 2011 8:53 pm
Location: Southend-on-Sea, Essex, UK

Re: FR's atmosphere currently.

Post by kit » Mon Apr 04, 2011 8:39 pm

I haven't been on here very long at all, and as a 'new' member I am finding it difficult to really get involved and chat to people/give my opinions/ask questions.. because I'm either scared of people being unpleasant, or of being lynched because I am a new rat owner and am still getting to grips with things. Obviously, not everyone is like that, and I don't necessarily mean directed towards me, I mean that it's what I've seen other new members suffering from more experienced owners. I really would like to chat to people more and really learn things in order to become the best owner I can be and give my rattys the best lives possible, it'd just be nice if the atmosphere was a bit more welcoming! :) As I said, not everyone is like that, and most people are lovely.. just a few ruining it for the majority I think.
The rits:Tilly, Ivy, Pippa, Peachy, Willow and Bruiser :)
Volunteer at Essex Guinea Pig, Rat and Rabbit Resuce :)

User avatar
Golgotha_tramp
Member
Member
Posts: 850
Joined: Sat Feb 20, 2010 1:40 pm
Location: Nottingham

Re: FR's atmosphere currently.

Post by Golgotha_tramp » Mon Apr 04, 2011 8:45 pm

kit wrote: I mean that it's what I've seen other new members suffering from more experienced owners.
I would agree with this statement which is really sad as the longest running members should be setting the example, especially if they are not just long standing members but also prominent and respected in the fancy.

I do think that some members would maybe benefit from a gentle (private) reminder from the moderators of how to treat people (especially new members).
Alex & The boys - Cathode, Sammy, Romulus, Remus, Sherman, Bohater, Rube and Fenrir.
Gone but not forgotten - :halo: Anode :dumbohalo: Fred

User avatar
Tammyrat
Member
Member
Posts: 638
Joined: Tue Sep 22, 2009 7:36 am
Location: Cambridge
Contact:

Re: FR's atmosphere currently.

Post by Tammyrat » Mon Apr 04, 2011 8:50 pm

Its so sad that people feel that way! This is such a fantastic community and its a shame that people dont feel welcome.

There has been so much trouble with trolls lately that i think it just really upsets people and its the most frustrating thing in the world, because you never know whats truth and what is being made up! When it comes to an animal in need i have never known people to pull together like people here do i.e, the Park Rats and the Norwhich Hut Rats!

All i can say is that if you are a new member and you are finding things tricky and you feel unwelcome, please please please pleaaaaassssse bare with us, we are the greatest group of people, never worry about askign questions we would all rather be asked. No question is too silly, or too small, we all started somewhere and sometimes people just need to be reminded. If someone is wrongfully "having a go" someone will always step up and say so, so dont worry at all!

Its great to have new members :D

Im sure everything will pick up soon :) Things can only get better!!
Tammy xx
In love with 8 Ratties - Winnie, Nelly, Crumble, Doola, Spot, Sherbert, Dolly and Fizz.
Night night sweet Possum, Dini, Custard :dumbogirly:
A proud member of the Savic Royal club :D

User avatar
Lillyland
Member
Member
Posts: 3437
Joined: Sun Apr 23, 2006 5:37 pm
Location: Sheffield

Re: FR's atmosphere currently.

Post by Lillyland » Mon Apr 04, 2011 8:56 pm

I have to come in and disagree a little.. it is some of the longest standing members who are most upset about the way things are going on here (although i am not best pleased with FR at the moment - i am actually referring to someone who has been here since the day FR opened)
And i have to say that the people i have noticed causing the issues haven't been here for *that* long. (some of them have racked up massive post counts... but)

I don't know what it is exactly that is 'wrong' - but there is definitely something. People seem to be unable to post anything without someone telling them they are doing it wrong. It is ok to be acting in the best interests of the rats.. but sometimes people need to realise that they come across like the gestapo, not concerned rat owners.

User avatar
Jemma
Member
Member
Posts: 5537
Joined: Mon Jul 29, 2002 9:56 am
Location: Ulverston - Cumbria
Contact:

Re: FR's atmosphere currently.

Post by Jemma » Mon Apr 04, 2011 8:58 pm

I'm umming and ahhring about what to really say to this. I've noticed things seem very hard on FR at the moment, to be honest it makes it really hard to post. I find that again and again I see things seem aimed more and more at the individual and less and less at helping the rats. I honestly don't think that this is the admins fault and completely emphasise with the loss I'm pretty sure they must be feeling. I've had several points lately where I've honestly been very tempted to just give up and stop spending the hours I spend on this forum to try and help folk, and it would be a shame as the majority of people are fine. It's also hard to see the admins blamed for most things again and again when i know these people and the time it takes them to try and keep the forum running as it is at the moment. I do think that people often turn towards blaming them rather than taking a hard look at themselves and questioning there own behaviour.

I don't know the answers at the moment, but one thing that does strike me is that those people that used to post a lot and act as a voice of reason seem to have lost much of there energy to post, if they even post at all now (and some of the admins fall in to this catagory too). I would love to see them post more and try and get back into things but don't know how i can help to make them want to any more.

I also don't know if I'm one of those long term posters thats causing all the trouble either. :wink:

Maybe this thread would be more useful if it was about how we could help improve the atmosphere of FR, rather than what's wrong with it?
Jemma
Muse rattery
North of England Rat Society - next show Preston 25th June

Pirate
Member
Member
Posts: 1049
Joined: Fri Aug 15, 2008 5:56 pm
Location: East London

Re: FR's atmosphere currently.

Post by Pirate » Mon Apr 04, 2011 9:43 pm

I'm not really the best person at picking up on atmosphere, but I have been on forums where people are just plain nasty to each other, and even if it can get a bit heavy handed here, for such a popular and busy forum, it's actually amazingly nice. No one ever makes personal digs at other people, for example. Sometimes it can get personal when animal care is involved, but that at least that's ultimately coming from a caring place (caring for the animal if not the person posting). So I'm surprised that people are finding it less pleasant than usual to be here. I'm not suggesting that anyone is wrong for feeling that way, of course.
Benjamin [Autistic & Proud]
The rat lads:Diego, Tristan, Noah, Isaac, Ace, Spooky.
Rat lads at the bridge: Bebop, Rocksteady, Charlie, Fudge, Icarus, Tobias, Bacchus, Zeke, Hugo.

User avatar
philosophyfox
Member
Member
Posts: 3702
Joined: Fri Aug 11, 2006 6:05 pm
Location: Hull, United Kingdom
Contact:

Re: FR's atmosphere currently.

Post by philosophyfox » Mon Apr 04, 2011 9:51 pm

Pirate wrote: So I'm surprised that people are finding it less pleasant than usual to be here. I'm not suggesting that anyone is wrong for feeling that way, of course.
I think it's really positive that you feel that way. It means the place isn't beyond all hope!

I'm going to have a think about a reply, as I'm rather tired! I think Jemma's made a good point about seeing how we can go forward rather than focussing on what's wrong, and I think the thread 'What's FR done for you?' that was started the other week really showed that people are still positive about FR and happy being members. I know I wouldn't be comfortable going to any other 'open' (I'm not talking about club forums here) forum for advice like I am on FR.
Moth :dumbo: Slug :dunce: Bug :smileyrat: Grub :smileyrat:
Missing: Ziggy Tribble Fiver Gumbo Rowdy Hige Toboe Tate Lyle Steven Daisy Crunchie Gaelan

User avatar
Anthony
Member
Member
Posts: 690
Joined: Mon Sep 13, 2010 11:19 pm
Location: Newcastle / Hatfield, Herts

Re: FR's atmosphere currently.

Post by Anthony » Mon Apr 04, 2011 10:07 pm

Hi.
Sorry in advance for typos - on phone!

Since I joined FR I have felt like i have been under constant attack and in some cases would even go as far as bullied. I know i am not the easiest person to get on with but i am by no means here for any argument. Like someone else has stated, i find that it is nearly always the older members who are doing the attacking. I mentioned my feelings in a thread a few days about and i was pleasantly surprised to find that i wasn't the only member who found this forum to be extremely hostile towards the 'newer' members.

I think we all have to remember that we are typing, the person on the receiving end has no idea of the tone the person is posting... For example, my thread earlier about my university has turned into a race debate in which i have continually been misinterpreted - perhaps because i am not too good at explaining what I mean? Im not sure. But regardless, i felt attacked by he members in that thread for instance.

I have found since day 1 that this forum is hostile but ts kind of grown a part of my life that i check it constinantly, and if i am honest i dont know why... I don't enjoy being here and whenever i make a post or thread this weird nervousness comes over me that I am almost scared of replies...

Although i disagree that it is older members who are under attack. I get the impression that the older members are scared of change almost and they don't like the variety of beliefs here, if you know what i mean. There are several members who continually posts rule, cold posts and I defended the people in a thread a while back about petshop animals and I WAS ATTACKED?! When this other member paosted a very cruel and cold post that upset several members, but all of the oldies attacked me?!?!

I disagree with moderation a it actually, i find the moderation to be too strict here and sometimes i find the rules here to be extremely stupid...
:luck:
Ollie :dumbo:, Oskar :dumbo:, Riley :smileyrat:, Joey :smileyrat:, Rupert :smileyrat: Eska :teen: , Erik :teen: and The baby :dumboteen:, Miles :baby:, Axel :baby:

RIP Louis, Minnie & Ginger <3

mirandamouse
Member
Member
Posts: 332
Joined: Mon Oct 04, 2010 3:53 pm
Location: Reading

Re: FR's atmosphere currently.

Post by mirandamouse » Mon Apr 04, 2011 10:21 pm

I haven't found any hostility to myself but I haven't posted anything that warrants a hostile reply.

I do find it a bit clicky between older members sometimes. Apart from my job hunting thread, I find my posts are largely ignored and I'm lucky if I get 2 replies but this doesn't seem to happen with older member's posts.

In terms of moving forward, my suggestion would be that everyone reads the posts carefully and considers your replies as there are to many threads that have gone off topic. Sometimes if you don't agree with something it may be better to not reply at the time rather than reply when your not in the best of moods. Also remembering that the way you come across is not always clear when writing in forums, so the tone is not always known and sensitive people may take offence when none is meant.

I think jumping on new members with the whole, why you shouldn't buy from pet shops thing also may discourage new newbies. People are able to find out info for themselves.

I generally enjoy being and would like to be more involved so I hope we can all move forward with this :D
Twyla :love: Cyborg :love: Persephone :love:

User avatar
ErnieG!
Member
Member
Posts: 2470
Joined: Sat Mar 13, 2010 8:28 pm
Location: Runcorn, Cheshire.

Re: FR's atmosphere currently.

Post by ErnieG! » Mon Apr 04, 2011 10:23 pm

Jemma wrote:
Maybe this thread would be more useful if it was about how we could help improve the atmosphere of FR, rather than what's wrong with it?

I agree with this.
But I want to put my two cents in ;)
I do think the people are lovely on here, I get friendly advice, not only for my rats, but for myself. If it wasn't for this forum, my rats would still be in a "hamster" cage (thats not even suitable for a mite :roll: ) on shavings fed nuggets. I owe them my rats lives really, but I think with the trolls, the little comments here and there, the personal attacks, the topics going off topic, it feels like a ticking bomb thats going to end in a very personal attack.
Or maybe when someone does make a personal attack, that person should maybe PM the poster to discuss further, without going off topic?

I think we all need to keep our chins up and remember how lovely everyone is and how well everyone works as a team, and how many rats lives everyone has changed for the better, and remember that what people are saying in their head might not come across the same when typed on a keyboard.
Emma and the rodents, Meryl, Esmeralda and the 3 unnamed girls.
Kuzco, waiting for some friends.

Waiting for me at the bridge Jasmine, Francesca, Francis and Ebony :rainbow:

Locked

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest