Moderator Orientation: Level Four

Welcome to the orientation module for Level Three Moderator Privileges. This module will address privileges and what you can now do as a Level Three Moderator. Confused? Don't be. Just sit back and click through this module to learn more.

Here is a quick summary of what we will cover:

  • Orientation
  • Chapter Links
  • Voice Reminder
  • Moderator Role
  • Unsilenceable

  • Unboot
  • Mute vs Boot Recap
  • switchhost
  • gamekick
  • forcegame
  • muteday
  • bootday
  • Reasons for Day Privileges

While there are several privileges available to you to use as a Moderator, they are there purely for you to enrich your experience online in the manner you see fit. Should you decide that you do not want to use them, that’s fine. Likewise, if you choose to use them, that’s fine too. The Moderator program is here to help you find a richer, more fulfilling experience while online.

Please keep in mind though, should you choose to use the privileges available to you as a Moderator, it is best that you adhere to the suggested uses below. Any abuse of Moderator privileges may lead to the revocation of your Moderator status.

Abuse of Moderator privileges is defined as, but not limited to, unwarranted mutes or boots, flooding of /msgbox’es, removal of privileges that were not issued by you, or muting or booting another Moderator. Muting or booting another Moderator will result in immediate termination of your Moderator Status. The frequency of the use of privileges (i.e. multiple mutes or boots in a given amount of time) may be considered an abuse of tools and can result in eventual removal from the program.

Voice Reminder

Your Voice is the most important privilege available. Your Voice can help you mediate situations, help users, and make new friends! Voice is manifested by what you type on the screen while on Voobly.com. As people cannot hear the intonations of your actual voice, what you type online is very important, for that is what users will see. For example, short, curt, one word replies are often perceived as being rude, online. Likewise, typing in all CAPITAL LETTERS is considered rude, as that is the online equivalent to shouting. When interacting with users online, it is best to avoid behaviors that are considered rude – remember that you “Catch more flies with honey” :-)

Your Voice is how you present yourself to other Voobly players. Are you the chatty/friendly type or are you terse and gruff with your responses? Do you make others relaxed when you talk with them or are other users up tight and silent when you are around? These reactions by Voobly players are totally dependent on your Voice.

Another way of thinking about Voice is that it is a way of explaining to a user why a particular behavior is objectionable in attempt to stop that particular action. Often times, if a person realizes that a certain action is “bad” they will no longer continue that behavior. One thing to remember, try and be specific as to why a particular action is objectionable. For example, when trying to use your Voice with a flooder, you could explain that flooding is bad because it prevents other users from interacting with one another and also prevents them from finding others to play against in a certain game.

Not only will use of Voice be helpful in stopping objectionable behavior, by educating users as to why their actions are contrary to the Code of Conduct, you will be helping to prevent future infractions. This serves to “save the Voobly player” and it helps to make the overall experience on Voobly.com, better for all users.

When interacting with other users on Voobly.com, it is best that you be yourself. As you already know, it is often easy to distinguish between those users who are telling the truth and those feeding you a line. People will appreciate your honesty and openness with them. Of course, you should only engage other users as determined by your own comfort level and your personal willingness to interact. Set your own boundaries and others will respect them.

Remember that as a Moderator, if you so choose, you can assist other Voobly players with their inquiries and questions to the best of your ability. If you are uncomfortable with a particular situation, or unsure of how to respond to a user, do not hesitate to ask other Moderatores or the Voobly administrators since they are there to assist you and all Voobly.com users.

Respect

Along the same lines as your VOICE, it is important to have respect for everyone on Voobly.com, regardless of perceived age, race, religion, Moderator status, etc. While there are certainly many differences among all the Voobly players, we are all united by the passion for gaming. If users perceive disrespect from you, your experiences online will not be very pleasant. You can be guaranteed that they will tell one of their friends, who in turn tells one of their friends, and pretty soon, you have a whole group of people making your online experience difficult. Remember that respect leads to respect, and disrespect leads to disrespect. If you are trying to make the online gaming experience better for all Voobly.com users, treat everyone with equal respect, and in turn, you will experience the same.

Rough Rooms

If you have been on Voobly.com for awhile, you are probably thinking, “Respect is all fine and good, but what about all those rough rooms where the users hate any sort of authority figure?” Indeed, that is a very good question, as there are certain groups of users who have it in for Moderatores. In situations such as this, it is important that you keep a calm head, thick skin, and treat everyone with respect as you would in another room. It may also be a good idea to ask another Moderator to come in and assist you when trying to reason with a rough room. Not only can another person serve as an effective backup, just having a different approach to the room could help calm things down. Remember that VOICE and RESPECT will be the best privileges available to you. Mutes should only be utilized in extreme cases, and boots should be used rarely, if ever. Lastly, remember that the Moderator program is to allow you to have fun and try and make Voobly.com a better place. If you are uncomfortable because of a certain room, by all means go to a different room, or take a break from the computer if you need to.

Moderator Role

Moderators only exist in the Help Room and Voobly Technical Chat rooms. The role of the moderator is to ensure that user questions and concerns are addressed in an orderly and timely fashion. As a Level Three Moderator, you will be able to assume the role of a moderator in either of these rooms. There will be dedicated moderators in these rooms at all times, so while your assistance in the moderator role would be appreciated, it is by no means required of you.

As a moderator, you will be able to move users around from one position to another, thus allowing them to ask a question to the room. You will be notified when a user wishes to ask a question, and that is the moderator's cue to move the user to the asking or waiting position. To move a user from one position to another, right click on their name, and a menu will pop-up with the option to move them into another position.

Unsilenceable

This particular privilege prevents you from becoming silenced in a room that has been silenced for moderation purposes.  When a room is silenced, like it is at the start of tournaments for example, you will be exempt from being silenced.  You will then be able to assist the host by informing users of the particular guidelines for that tournament.

Unboot (/unboot username reason)

Booting a user can be quite useful, however, it can also be too severe if situations change and the user realizes the cause for the boot in the first place. As a result, a privilege to “unboot” a person is also provided for your use. To unboot a user, use the same command format as you would for other commands.

e.g. /unboot Bill reason

This will now unboot the user named Bill, and he will be able to access Voobly.com again. Keep in mind, you should only unboot those users that you have booted firsthand. How would you like it if you booted a troublemaker only to find out that this user sweet-talked another Moderator into unbooting them? Unbooting users not booted by you is considered to be an abuse of your Moderator status and you will be removed from the program.

mute vs boot

From time to time there will be situations that require more than use of VOICE. While these should be few and far between, as VOICE is the most effective privilege on Voobly.com, there are some “Force” tools available to make Voobly.com a better place. These privileges are commonly referred to mute and boot.

A common question that the Voobly Community team fields is, “Which is better to use: A mute or a boot?” To be perfectly frank, one is not better than the other, however, boots should not be used unless all other privileges short of a boot have been tried and exhausted. The same can be said for mutes in that a mute should not be used unless VOICE is tried and exhausted. The reasoning behind this is to ensure consistency with one of the notion of respect for all Voobly players. Respect for an individual is manifested in VOICE – in taking time to explain to a user why certain behaviors are inappropriate for Voobly.com. Furthermore, having the progression from one privilege to another helps to ensure that all users are treated the same—that they are granted the same respect as someone else on Voobly.com, regardless of behavior. The Moderator program is designed to make Voobly.com a fun place for all users, and the only way that could occur is if there is a mutual respect across the board.

Switchhost (/switchost username # reason)

As the name implies, this will allow you to become host in a particular game room.

e.g. /switchost Bill 1 reason

By typing that in, you will force a user named Bill, who is currently not the host, to become host in a game room number 1.

This is especially useful for those moderators affiliated with the technical support committee. By having this privilege available, you can provide assistance to multiple Voobly players all at once, should you choose to do so. This does not mean, however, that you can take over game rooms in a lobby without the actual host's permission. As that action can prevent other users from playing a game, that is considered to be an abuse of this particular privilege. Any abuse of this privilege, or any privilege associated with the Moderator program can lead to the ultimate removal from the program.

Gamekick (/gamekick username # reason)

The gamekick command is a tournament tool only. It can be quite useful when dealing with users who are troublesome in game during a tournament. Sometimes situations warrant that a user should be kicked from a particular game if they are violating Voobly.com’s Code of Conduct or the Terms of Service. If your Voice, repeated warnings, and all other privileges are insufficient in handling a potential troublemaker, then you should use gamekick.

As expected, the format of this command is the same as all other commands. Just type the command followed by the username.

e.g. /gamekick Bill 1 reason

That command will kick a user named Bill from a particular game room (here game 1) and close the game, however Bill will still be logged into Voobly.com. While this privilege is very effective on Voobly players, this command must not be used outside of a tournament. Since we do not deal with any in game issues without an actual complaint at the forums, all players must be referred to the actual complaints forums on Voobly.com.

The gamekick privilege is used for in-game violations of Voobly.com’s Code of Conduct or Terms of Service during tournaments only. Use of the gamekick privilege outside of tournaments or when no violation of Voobly.com’s of Conduct or Terms of Use is present or when playing the affected game, will be considered an unwarranted use of this privilege, and thus considered to be an abuse of Moderator privileges. Any abuse of this privilege, or any others associated with the Moderator program, is grounds for the revocation of your Moderator status.

Forcegame (/forcegame username # reason)

As the name implies, this will allow you to enter a game table or force someone to enter a table in a particular game lobby.

e.g. /forcegame Bill 15 reason

By typing that in, you will force a user named Bill into game 15.

This is especially useful for those moderators affiliated with the technical support committee and community committee. By having this privilege available, you can provide assistance to multiple Voobly players all at once, should you choose to do so. This does not mean, however, that you can hold multiple rooms in a lobby for your friends or using the premium reserved game tables. As that action can prevent other users from playing a game, that is considered to be an abuse of this particular privilege. Any abuse of this privilege, or any privilege associated with the moderator program can lead to the ultimate removal from the program.

Muteday (/muteday username reason)

The other disciplinary command Level 3 Moderatores posses is the /muteday command. The /muteday command works much like the other mute and boot commands in that you need to enter a username after typing the command, but you will also need to provide a reason.

e.g. /muteday Bill reason

By typing that in, you will have muted a user named Bill for a day because of repeated flooding. This will still allow Bill to play games on Voobly.com, and he will still be allowed to send Voobly messages via Voobly Friends, however he will not be able to say anything in any lobby on Voobly.com for one day.

As for entering in the command line the reason why Bill was muted for a day, this is purely to ensure that people who are muted for a day deserved to be and to further ensure that this privilege is not abused. As you recall, any abuse of Moderator privileges is grounds for the revocation of your Moderator status.

As indicated by the example, situations that would warrant the /muteday command would be for excessive flooding, excessive use of profanities, abuse, and excessive language in violation of Voobly.com’s Code of Conduct. For more information on day command reasons, refer to that section of the orientation materials.

The /muteday privilege should only be used when previous options such as your Voice and /mute5 have been exhausted. Remember -- try to "Save the Voobly player" with your Voice before utilizing any other privileges. Use of the muteday privilege when no violation of the Voobly.com’s Code of Conduct or Terms of Use is present, will be considered an unwarranted use of this privilege, and thus considered to be an abuse of Moderator privileges. Any abuse of this privilege, or any others associated with the Moderator program, is grounds for the revocation of your Moderator status.

Bootday (/bootday username reason)

As with the /boot60 command, bootday requires that you enter in a reason for a daylong boot for a particular user.

e.g. /bootday Bill reason

Issuing that command will exclude user Bill from Voobly.com for a period of one day. The reason why he was booted is because he was abusive-as you recall, abuse on Voobly.com is grounds for removal from the site.

Specific incidents of using a /bootday command vary on a case-by-case basis, though a general rule of thumb is to save this command for the most extreme circumstances of violation of Voobly.com’s Code of Conduct or Terms of Service. For more information on day command reasons, refer to that section of the orientation materials.

Remember that your first tactic is to calm the Voobly player with your Voice before utilizing any other privileges when faced with a Voobly.com Code of Conduct violation. Use of the bootday privilege when no violation of Voobly.com’s Code of Conduct or Terms of Use is present, will be considered an unwarranted use of this privilege, and thus considered to be an abuse of Moderator privileges. Any abuse of this privilege, or any others associated with the Moderator program, is grounds for the revocation of your Moderator status.

Reasons for Day Privileges

When using day commands such as /muteday or /bootday, a reason needs to be entered in before the command will work. In order to create a uniform approach to use of day commands, here are sample reasons for issuing a day command.

  • Abuse of either the Moderator Help Room or Tech Help Room
  • If a day command is applied in either help room, and the initial inquiry was specific to a particular lobby, it is encouraged that the day command is also issued from the lobby in question by the user
  • Impersonation of a Moderator or Voobly representative
  • Chat invasion--hack
  • Abuse of a user
  • Note that PMs cannot be used in consideration of alleged abuse unless a flood of PMs is used to freeze up a computer
  • Profanity flood
  • All other floods
  • Bad profiles
  • Advertisements
  • Bad nickname -- only in cases where it is causing a disruption within a lobby

Failure to state a valid reason for use of a day command can be considered abuse of Moderator privileges and can result in removal from the program.