MAA Report #9


MAA Report #9

Leave of Absence

Over the course of the next four weeks I have three out-of-town business trips, so I'll be taking a Leave of Absence for the bulk of that time. I will endeavor to reply to emails inquiries as necessary during the evenings during this time, just in case anyone needs to get in touch with me. Any MAA-related requests should still be sent to me and my current Magistrates, and one of them will likely be able to resolve the request.

All of the Twitters

The Dark Council has been discussing the experiment with awarding Twitter interaction, and feel that we need to perform a course correction to the current requirements.

The changes are as follows:

  1. A member earns 1 Scroll for every 12 original Tweets in a given month (up from 10). Tweets must include either @DarkJediFanClub or have any of the "Official DB hashtags"
  2. Retweets no longer count towards earning a Scroll.
  3. A member can earn a maximum of 4 Scrolls in a given month.
  4. We will be adjusting the prestige gained for this medal (since it is still easy the spam/farm the medal) to reflect diminishing returns similar to how the Cluster of Fire operates.

These changes are due to the fact that some members made use of a third-party service in order to retweet a large amount of content. This resulted in a high number of Scrolls being awarded to these members for very little effort on their part. While this may have helped with the more immediate goal of increasing awareness of the DB through Twitter, it goes against the reasoning for how we award our members: for their individual efforts. The level of effort involved in setting up this kind of automation is not something that should be rewarded, especially on a recurring basis.

Fair warning: Worthless old person bitching incoming...

You're going to devalue a medal that is awarded for multiple things (some that require actual effort and time) because of a failed attempt at making twitter matter? That doesn't seem right. What about the people who earned the medal just by recruiting or creating webpages or advertisements?

Just curious if the people in charge are actually aware of how twitter works? Twitter isn't for publicity or gathering attention (which I assume is the purpose since this came from the recruitment office), it's designed as a simple way for people to connect with others they have an existing relationship with. If we used the DB twitter to send news updates and stuff to other DB members, that would make sense, but DB hashtags and DB twitter accounts are only going to looked at by people already associated with the DB (or spam bots/porn actors). -->

Also, if you are going to award members for tweeting, it would be helpful if "original tweet" was actually defined or given examples for. It would take almost no effort to spam 48 tweets with random, useless DB "stuff" in about 5 minutes. And when it is defined, it should not just be in a news post, but somewhere more permanent... like the Scroll of Indoctrination wiki?

Aidan, fair points.

We're still in discussions on if an award is appropriate for Twitter activity, and what that award is. Good point on the definition of "original tweets". After posting this Kalen was in the process of updating the Wiki page, so if that hasn't already been taken care of it will be shortly.

Yes, Twitter is basically just a big email group and by re-Tweeting we're just forwarding the email over and over to each other. I'm not a huge Twitter fan personally.

What we wanted to do here is let folks know we're looking at this system. There were some gaps, people used programs to retweet and pick up easy awards with minimal work. We've closed those gaps. This isn't the "final" version of Twitter or the "final" statement on how the award works.

Recruiting Society and Scrolls of Sociality?

"We're still in discussions on if an award is appropriate for Twitter activity"

^ Umm...That seems silly. What is going to happen if its decided that an award isn't appropriate? Are all those who have had it awarded to them already going to have it removed? Or will they keep it and future members will have to jump through a different set of hoops to achieve the same award?

Would it not just be simpler to suspend awarding for this activity until a concrete solution is ironed out?

Raiju -

Existing awards for this were Scrolls of Indoctrination. Which I'm sure you realize have been around a long time and are awarded for more than just Twitter things. If an award isn't appropriate people won't get Scrolls of Indoctrination for Twitter anymore, there's still the pre-existing ways that members can earn them. I can't imagine people will have awards they earned removed from them, that seems silly. If a new award is created I'm sure the MAA staff and Coders will adjust the records to reflect where things belong (like the recent Scroll of Foundation / Scroll of the Master change).

Scrolls for Twitter activity are awarded at the end of the month. I'm confident there will be a solution well before the next 19 days pass. So there's no reason to "suspend" anything.

As Kalen said, this was an experiment. We still had things to learn about how Twitter works, and how to apply it to the membership's activities. We learned about how there are services to auto-reTweet. People (like me) who never used Twitter realized we're mostly just re-messaging each other. Now we adjust fire and move forward.

I don't think we should award twitter "content" with a medal previously for recruiting. We're just going to end up in a few months making a new scroll for recruiting, just like we now have a new scroll for mentoring to DJK.

Val: I know SoIs were awarded and are for more than just twitter, but to me it seems like more work to just throw any odd medal at the activity and then later change it (whether its removing it/changing the medal awarded/whatever). I liked the way Sarin & Mav proposed awards for those that help out the ACC beta launch and the feedback form; and seems like a good way to have done the twitter release or for future reference. No specific award was given, just that something was available and not even what activity was required to get it. I think its a great way to see who is properly interested in helping the club rather than medal collecting, see what kind of activity could come from the department, and lessen the MAA work in swapping medals or whatever.

Also, were there no AWOL stats? :( curious was happened with the check in January

We're still discussing how to handle awarding Twitter-related activity. It is a new area that we're trying to branch into, so there is going to be some trial-and-error as we explore how to do this and try to get it right for the club. A variety of suggestions have been made, from creating a new Scroll medal specifically for this purpose, to awarding an existing merit medal after a period of time (several months maybe?). But nothing has really stuck yet.

Raiju: If I remember correctly, just over 30 members were moved to the Rogue list as a result of the January AWOL check. Will make sure to include that info after future AWOL checks.

Perhaps it would've been wiser to put twitter through a test phase (like we do with everything...) before handing out awards for it?

Isn't the ACC going through a test phase and handing out double awards?

The ACC is not some new form of "activity" for the DB as one might describe Twitter to be (though I don't think twitter is really a platform of activity as the ACC is, but a means of getting us exposure...). The ACC has existed before and the relative amount of effort per award hasn't changed hugely. Indeed, what Raiju was referring to was us saying that depending on effort, we'd award some additional medals beyond the CI awarding, because we aren't sure exactly what to expect in the beta in terms of activity, but we figured some people would go beyond the call of just a bit of testing, and we wanted to make sure those people knew we'd be willing to compensate them. :)

Anyway: Why not go in the direction of the Wiki and the Forums and have the potential for a member to earn a scroll once a month for being exceptional in the area of tweeting DB stuff? Same way we have Featured Articles and Forum Members of the Month getting scrolls.

I was Forum Member of the Month for like 9 months, and I only got one DSS. :P

Just my input here, but having been part of the Twitter thing I've followed and been followed by maybe fifty new, out-of-DJB members and groups that have a thing for Star Wars, on top of tons who weren't but now have exposure to us.

On top of that, Twitter's been really useful for promoting the accomplishments of our members and others. Basically, we can use it to reach out to people looking for what we offer, build interest in others, and keep our people connected.

I suggest we keep Twitter awards and scale them back, as has already been done. It had merit, and though not everyone's into it or fully utilizing it yet, this kind of social media's going to be a great boon to us as the years go by.

"Scrolls of Sociality" ^^^ I like this idea. It would separate it from the Scroll of Indoctrination, but still give something for people that are active on twitter. Although for the most part I can't think of much to do original tweets with but retweeting things already on the feed (like the reports) could gain new members. If tags like #starwars #sith #jedi are added people looking through those "trends" could follow the link and join.

Twitter certainly can be a great boon, but it's not like working on quality wiki articles isn't very important for our future, as well. I still think it's frustrating that someone can get 10 awards that basically equate to "brought a living person into the DB" just for sending out tweets per month. Twitter DOES have value, but I think the value it has lies in realms other than direct recruitment (exposure can lead to recruitment, ofc, but it's also useful for other stuff).

A better approach might be to start looking at Twitter as a way to get news out, like Liam suggests. Do we give people spam medals for putting up news posts, or emailing their houses? Both of those things are covered by general activity. We do award people that are particularly helpful on the Forums or have written a very good Wiki article. By creating a monthly award for "Best Twitterer" or whatever, this also gives leadership flexibility to award particularly useful tweeting people, even if those people aren't making up the bulk of our communiques (e.g. if the intent is for people to put real effort in, this helps leadership have discretion there). Furthermore, if we work on top-level leadership recognizing the importance of Twitter for disseminating information and exposure, we might not need a medal to give away every X tweets, because it could be seen as an important part of the job. Furthermore, with prestige/credits/possessions in the future, merely having a ton of a medal may be less important than having one of a medal worth more.

I just don't think Twitter is really like a platform so I don't see it deserving some kind of spam medal, but I do see it's importance... so I think we should find ways to foster actually using it to get information out, rather than promoting a strategy of spam.

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