How to register complaint against moderator

Discussion in 'Comments and Suggestions' started by un esprit d'acier, Jun 26, 2013.

  1. un esprit d'acier New Member


    I wish to register a complaint against a moderator's wrongful removal of a thread.

    Could somebody please indicate how I can accomplish this?

    Thank you
  2. jann

    jann co-mod'

    English - USA
    Running a quick search to find your posts, I see you have participated primarily in the French forums. Information about how to contact the French forum moderators is listed here.

    As it happens, I am one of the French forum moderators. I assure you we'll take a careful look at your complaint and get back to you with either a rectification or an explanation. :)
  3. slowlikemolasses Senior Member

    English - US
    I have the same question; would someone please answer it qua question? Thanks.
  4. JamesM

    JamesM à la Mod (English Only)

    Here's what it says in the FAQ, slowlikemolasses:

    Usually, the best thing is to contact the moderator who performed the action. That person can often explain the reasoning behind the action. It's not unusual for people to take a moderator action personally, but they are often not aware of the constraints placed on a moderator to edit or delete posts to fall into specific categories. Sometimes just knowing the category and the obligation on the moderator's part to remove such a post will go a long way to making sense of the action.

    If you are unsatisfied by the response, the next step would be to contact another moderator in that forum, or if there is only one moderator, contact any moderator you know.

    I hope that helps answer the question.
  5. slowlikemolasses Senior Member

    English - US
    It does, in part. The point on which the FAQ remains vague on, and, at least with regard to my own reason for asking, is whether or not there is an establish body within the moderators that deals with complaints against other moderators or if this duty is an inherent duty of all moderators, and whether or not this is the most effective way of handling these issues. I'd appreciate any clarification. Thanks.
  6. jann

    jann co-mod'

    English - USA
    No, there is no "council" or "appeals board" officially designated to deal with complaints. This is a shared duty for all moderators.

    If you have a complaint about how a specific moderator handled something, and if you are unable to resolve the matter through a cordial exchange of private messages with that moderator, then you should report the private message chain (or the thread in question, as you like) by clicking the red triangle. Use the report form to leave a message: explain why you are dissatisfied with the reponse you've received, and request that the team review the matter. We are not unprincipled: the moderator with whom you have a disagreement will generally provide any information requested and then withdraw from the discussion so that his or her teammates can come to their own conclusions. A member of the team responsible for the particular forum where the incident occurred will get back to you with the team's decision. If there is only one moderator responsible for the forum in question, that moderator will ask colleagues from other forums for help.

    You asked if this is an effective way of handling issues. We believe it to be so, or we would have changed the system. We moderators are volunteers, and we don't enjoy time-consuming, unpleasant exchanges any more than anyone else does!

    Does this help?

    (French forums moderator)
  7. slowlikemolasses Senior Member

    English - US
    What I asked was whether or not the established method of handling problems is the most effective way to do so. I don't expect the system to be the best, though I don't believe, nor do I believe that you believe, that you "would have changed the system" if it wasn't efficient, as though any gum in the works would inherently make itself apparent the moment it appears, prepared to be easily removed. The reason the system needs improvement is exactly because it is seen as self-regulating. Have any allowances been made for situations in which a user has made a valid argument as to why a moderators decision to remove content should be removed, but the moderators continue to disagree?
  8. Mauricet Senior Member

    near Grenoble
    French - France
    The end of this sentence remained closed to my understanding. As this is an important issue, I wish you would be kind enough to rephrase it if possible. Thanks.
  9. slowlikemolasses Senior Member

    English - US
    Ready to be taken out.
  10. ewie

    ewie Senior Member

    Another Country
    English English
    Do you mean "continue to disagree amongst themselves" or "continue to disagree with the appellant", SLM?

    In my experience, as a general rule, if you say "The Answer is A" and a panel of multiple fair-minded and disinterested people say "Nope, Sorry, the Answer is Actually B", there's a good chance that the answer may indeed be B.
    I'd appreciate it if you could rephrase the whole of post #7: I really have no idea what point you want to make:(
  11. JamesM

    JamesM à la Mod (English Only)

    I think I understand what you are asking. If the person who lodged the complaint is still not satisfied with the result after receiving a response from another moderator (or moderators), he or she can contact Mike Kellogg, the owner of the board. So, yes, there is the possibility of an appeal to a higher power. :)

    Internally, if there is a disagreement among the moderators about a particular issue or a general policy, they do the same thing.
  12. slowlikemolasses Senior Member

    English - US
    How does one most efficiently make him aware of the problem and the discussions with moderators?
  13. JamesM

    JamesM à la Mod (English Only)

    If you have gone through all the other steps that have been recommended you can use the Contact Us link at the bottom of any page and fill in the form to send a message to the board's Administrator. Please do not use it as your first option. You will simply be referred to the moderators if you haven't explored that option first.
  14. slowlikemolasses Senior Member

    English - US
    By "the board's Administrator" are you referring to Mike Kellogg?
  15. slowlikemolasses Senior Member

    English - US
    If so, I'm still unsure as to how to most effectively expose him to the full scope of the issue, as it includes more than one moderator's PM.
  16. Cagey post mod (English Only / Latin)

    English - US
    There is a 'Contact Us' link in the bar at the bottom of this page. Use that to reach the administrator.

    I suggest that you use that link only after you have first tried contacting moderators as was suggested above.
  17. slowlikemolasses Senior Member

    English - US
    When you say "administrator" are you referring to the owner of the board?
  18. Cagey post mod (English Only / Latin)

    English - US
    Yes, we are. He will see any message sent through the 'contact us' link. :)
  19. slowlikemolasses Senior Member

    English - US
    Consider me very well informed that I should first contact moderators.
  20. slowlikemolasses Senior Member

    English - US
    Thanks. Shouldn't this information be added to the appropriate section in the FAQ?
  21. JamesM

    JamesM à la Mod (English Only)

    No, because:

    1) It isn't a Frequently Asked Question; it is rarely asked. (We rarely have serious unresolved problems here, despite the number of participants.)
    2) All moderators will eventually refer the person to Mike Kellogg if the issue is unresolved.
    3) Many people will jump to step 3 if step 3 is spelled out rather than following steps 1 and 2 first.
    4) Anyone who asks specifically will get the specific response, as you have.
  22. slowlikemolasses Senior Member

    English - US
    1) How can you tease apart exactly which of the frequently asked questions about dealing with moderators are asking about a moderator question versus a Mike-Kellog-level question when they are purposely not made aware of this level in the FAQ?

    2) I'm troubled by your use of the word eventually. How long must a user bang on the door before it will open?

    3) Then why is Step 2 in the rules? Can't a user already skip steps as the rules are now? Why can't an equally strongly worded admonition against using Step 2 before Step 1 be used with the addition of this third step?

    4) Again, how is a user to even know that a third step lurks somewhere in the shadows?
  23. Cagey post mod (English Only / Latin)

    English - US
    I suggest that you take whatever steps seem appropriate to you and stop worrying so much about what other people may do.
  24. slowlikemolasses Senior Member

    English - US
    4) Again, how is a user to even know that a third step lurks somewhere in the shadows when any discussion of the issue send the user into a storm of FAQ restatements, as can be see in this very thread?
  25. JamesM

    JamesM à la Mod (English Only)

    1) So you're asking how the people responsible for maintaining order on the forum will tell whether they should kick a problem upstairs if it becomes too much for them? Since we are all volunteers we have a limited amount of time to devote to the board. When a good portion of that time is being eaten up by one problem, that's a good indication to a) involve other moderators and b) send it to Mike if we can't resolve it. That's the way it works.

    2) How long to bang on the door? The Contact Us form is the most common way for anyone to register a complaint about a website anyhere, anytime. It's freely available to anyone. No one is holding a secret URL that is only revealed after you "bang on the door" until your knuckles are bleeding. This is a silly question, in my opinion.

    3) Step 2 is in the rules for people who like to know what the rules are. Mike is available when needed but not actively moderating on the board most of the time. Therefore, it's the moderators' job to deal with day-to-day issues. Also, 99% of problems are resolved by Step 2.

    4) See my response to 2.

    I honestly don't know what you trying to accomplish here. You have asked what the procedure is and you have been told, in private and in public. You have exercised every option you have. If it is simply to agitate for change then your questions are disingenuous.
  26. slowlikemolasses Senior Member

    English - US
    Cagey: Is attempting to help fellow user through an extremely difficult process frowned upon here?
  27. slowlikemolasses Senior Member

    English - US
    That's precisely what I'm attempting to do. What do I have to do to make it evident that I am being nothing but truthful about this topic?
  28. JamesM

    JamesM à la Mod (English Only)

    Make statements rather than ask questions, such as "I don't like the way problems are handled here." I'm not saying that you'll get a different response but you will at least be more straightforward about your goal.

    You asked us to answer it qua question but then moved on to stating your disagreement, still couched as questions. We are answering your questions as questions, and then you are arguing with our answers because you don't like the way things work. That is talking at cross purposes.

    This could have been a short thread:

    slowlikemolasses: I don't like the way complaints are handled here.
    moderator: policy questions are handled by Mike Kellogg, the board owner. Please contact him via the Contact Us form.

    End of thread.

    Instead, you asked us to answer it as a genuine question, to which we gave genuine and detailed answers.
  29. slowlikemolasses Senior Member

    English - US
    Oh, if only things worked that efficiently here. A post like that would not have lasted long before deletion.

    What does it matter if they are statements or questions? Are you calling the Socratic method null and void?
  30. JamesM

    JamesM à la Mod (English Only)

    Like other moderators before me, I believe I've reached the amount of time I'm willing to go round the mulberry bush on this matter. Unfounded accusations and vague generalities about how this board is seen and predictions about what would happen to a suggestion posted on the Comments and Suggestions board are pointless. The very fact that this thread is here and multiple moderators have attempted to answer your questions gives the lie to your prediction.

    At this point the conversation has descended into baiting and trolling, in my opinion. Feel free to exercise the options you have been given.

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