A weekly word from staff.

Discussion in 'Website Suggestions' started by Az', Mar 6, 2019.

  1. Az'

    Az' Guide Writer Registered

    May 4, 2018
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    Suggestion :

    Open a new category in the "Announcements" forum called "Weekly Gazette."
    This category will allow players to reply to a thread. The players will be allowed to ask questions to staff by replying to the thread, and those questions will be answered in the next weekly post.
    Each number of the Gazette will be posted on the friday evenings. It would include, in order :

    • The news staff want to highlight (for example, the creation of the "Philia" world).

    • The current server-wide projects (by players or by staff/teams), such as contests, open projects, events, Philia villages.

    • The list of events available on the server (the Event team Events) and the time they're bound to be played at.

    • A list of the upcoming projects such as catalog features, spawns, new events to come, new projects like the Philia world.

    • Announcement of secret projects with hints (in words or in cryptic screenshots) so people can prepare and get hyped for them, and know that something is in preparation rather than being uninformed altogether.

    • Announcement of every change in the staff teams (promotions, demotions, quitting).

    • Announcement of changes in the rules.

    • Announcement of future changes in the game, such as the reset of the End / the Nether.

    • The list of the issues that have been solved the week preceeding the post, and how each of them has been solved.

    • The list of issues that have been raised by players/seen by staff on the forums or ingame during the last week prior to the posting and their status, including :
    - updates on the long-lasting-problems such as : personnal worlds, player ranks, a new spawn, a proper event world where players can't fly, real lag-reduction, a correct despawn rate for items you lose when you die, server-wide projects, tweaking the Essentials plugin to disable losing /fly on disconnection so players don't die after reloads anymore.

    - updates on the last problems seen, caused by plugins (like : "the iron farms do not work for now because of X and you'll be refunded on X/X/X, we aim to fix that by next week/next month)

    - informations about the last plugins added, the problems we might encounter, the command lists on how to use them, if they work yet or not yet (like : bounty hunter plugin has been added, the commands are /mh bounty to display the list of bounties, /mh bounty (name) (price) to place a bounty on someone, /mh bounty (name) cancel to erase a bounty. Be aware that you won't get refunded for cancelling a bounty and that bounties do not work on the general survival server, this will be fixed on the X/X/X by X)

    - the list of previous issues that have not yet been tackled, with informations about when they will be fixed/if they will be fixed and when we can expect the fix to come up

    This list will give as much informations as possible, like when they are expected to be fixed, by whom, their status (priority or not), how many people have been affected by it, informations about how to handle the issues (like naming animals when they despawned could prevent them from despawning)

    This weekly Gazette could also include tips and tricks, like little tutorials about farms or decoration, player interviews, player builds, highlights of some player initiatives and articles about the community. This would need a writer, though, and is beyond the right-to-information it's supposed to defend.
    The purpose of this Gazette will be to keep players informed about their environnment and help create a real sense of community out of Corbacraft, breach the gap between players and staff, and help the forums strive. It will also ensure a feeling of being well-cared and well-informed for the players, and help them be sure to have an answer to their questions when they ask one, be it a "we don't know".
    Again, if the answer is "it would be too much work," I'll propose myself to keep track of things and then write this Gazette.
  2. Finn_The_Hobbit

    Finn_The_Hobbit Well-Known Member Registered

    Jun 20, 2017
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    Destroyer o' Diorite
    Middle Earth
    I love this idea! This would be a good step in the right direction for Staff, and would help to keep everyone informed. Here are a few ideas that came to mind with this though:

    -Every so often, chat could send out a message in game saying "Go Check out the Weekly Gazette here (The "here is linked)!". This would encourage Players to check up on Server news and to possibly join the Forums!

    -I propose that Ergo should write this when he can, and/or at least contribute to it and reply each week. This would help Ergo become more involved with the Playerbase, and become less distant.

    -Staff might need a place to document what goes on in the week, so they could create a private section on the Forums. Each time a Staff member makes a change to the Server, or simply wants something to be printed, they could make a post in this section. This section could server as a source for the Gazette's writer, making the collection of stories far simpler!
    FlashTurtle and Az' like this.
  3. Reg

    Reg Member Registered

    Dec 22, 2017
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    Hey Az,

    I absolutely love this idea! I understand that clear communication from the staff team can be difficult at times, and this would be a great way for them to get a bit of extra word out. Truth be told, even staff have a hard time understanding exactly what's going on with the server most times. Ergo makes a habit of being extremely cryptic and/or secretive about new things going on, even to his admins. A project like this would encourage him to come out of his hidey-hole more often and give staff and players a heads up with new changes big and small.

    The level of detail and thought put into this suggestion are wonderful, and I really hope that this suggestion can be taken into consideration by the staff. If not an official feature of the Corbacraft forums, perhaps at least a bit of fun for a few staff and players who enjoy typing out newsletters or are looking to involve themselves to get their feet wet with announcements to the community every now and then.

    However, while I am in full support of the original idea, I can imagine a few problems that may crop up, especially if this begins to go on for a while:
    • Archiving old copies: While not often, the forums do occasionally experience major updates and overhauls that will completely wipe boards. If this were to happen, we would lose history of all the older editions. While editions maybe a year or so back wouldn't be important there are still players who may have taken a few months away from the game and were interested in reading all the hot gossip that may be old news, but still greatly impactful on the server.
    • Running out of material/low involvement: New ideas can be brewed up all the time, but how long will it be until things start to feel stale? Everyone has their own little twist on how they communicate through text, so if the same person writes every single edition, will players start to get sick of it? What if players do not participate in the threads where they can comment, ask questions, suggest ideas, or answer polls?
    • Staff burning out: When you're taking on a major project, at first a lot of people who feel passionate about it will feel like they'll never get sick of it, however take it from the ex-staff member who tried to archive every single warning, mute, jail, and ban by hand back when the server had hundreds of players a day: You will get burned out and lose all motivation to keep up with the project. Having a large number of staff who are willing to pitch in and take the load off each other is important. If not, the entire project will crumble.
    • Just remembering to do it: Again, take it from the guy who had Ergo (aka the guy who rarely pms anyone), pming him reminders to do weekly tasks to promote the server. Maybe that's just me, heck I didn't know it was Tuesday today until about 4 pm; but if it isn't, having people remember to post on a regular deadline can be a challenge. Especially so when you combine the fact that they may be burning out, have other priorities in life, or simply realize that their involvement in staff is exclusively based on their willingness to volunteer their time and energy.
    • Who writes it + their grammar: While practice makes perfect, not everyone is 100% with their grammar. A large portion of the community and staff are not native English speakers, and even those who are may not be confident enough with their grasp to make big announcements (I certainly am guilty of teasing Ergo about his grammar). It will take some work to encourage folks who are more shy to come forward and help write the weekly newsletters. Of course, having someone give things the once-over ties back into the idea of burning out as well as having one prominent voice in every post; not to mention the fact that having someone to look it over will add into production time.
    • It's going to take a lot of time: Newsletters are a lot of work. School newspapers typically are put together by quite a few people over the span of the entire week. My mom's one-page parent newsletters for her kindergarten class takes her the better part of her whole Sunday off to write. Whoever gets into this project will need to understand that a quality product cannot be made in an hour or two every Friday after school/work. Community involvement, editing, planning, formatting, and even just writing it are all different steps that will take time.
    Keep in mind these aren't guarantees of what can and/or will happen/be expected. Some of these scenarios have simple answers, while some don't. I would love to see how you may brainstorm ways to address it, however do not take what I've said as a surefire way to get this entire idea thrown down the drain, or feel as though I'm pressuring you to address everything here. Seeing both the pros and cons of an idea can help address problems before they happen, and collaborating on solutions is an extremely strong method of bulking up a project to make it more successful, so I like to play devil's advocate where I can.

    Alongside this, having that big stamp of approval doesn't mean the community can't get together and stew up something to summarize the week for those who need a refresher, either. While it isn't quite your original suggestion, I believe players alone could implement elements of this into their own project as well. Given a situation where this project is denied, or staff feel skeptical, a player-created weekly article could serve as a great example as to it's potential, and ease staff into the idea of providing staff-exclusive information and announcements, or taking the idea in stride and making your posts official. You could perhaps set up a thread in the General Discussion board and have players reply with any big news they know of, and create weekly posts to kickstart your suggestion.

    As an example, perhaps you could announce player-accessible information that not everybody hears about right away (or players frequently keep talking about) such as:
    • The 3 Balance Top players as of Friday morning
    • Fun/interesting Minecraft/Corbacraft tips
    • Small plugins becoming accessible to players like /disguise and /marry
    • Cool builds submitted by players
    • Advertisements for shops
    • Small polls or Q&A's you create for players
    • Staff promotions/hirings

    @Finn_The_Hobbit, in response to your point about getting Ergo involved, I wholeheartedly believe it would be greatly beneficial for him to get involved that way, however from how I've seen Ergo act, I feel like he's just burnt out on Minecraft. Corbacraft has been up for years, and he's one of the only guys writing code for plugins, waking up at 2 am to reset the server after he gets a flood of angry messages from staff, making the executive financial decisions, and being absolutely bombarded by everybody who sees him online both in and out of the server. He puts a lot of love into this server, but there's only so much love a guy his age can put into it before school, work, friends, and hobbies all get in the way. I simply worry that people will feel disappointed if there's an expectation for him to be involved frequently and he emotionally or physically doesn't have the energy to do so. Of course, keep in mind what I've said is simply speculation. He could totally jump in after this and debunk what I've said.

    Otherwise Finn, I also agree with what you've stated. All of your ideas would greatly benefit the promotion and production of the newsletter, and I was even going to suggest your other two points before I read your reply. I'm super glad to see there are others in support of Az's idea!

    Good luck,
    Finn_The_Hobbit likes this.

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