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Mod inaction and the future
#46
Quote:I think one thing that could help is a forum for sellers to ask for an opinion on the development of a piece from their consumer base, prior to actually releasing a product. There they could show their development and get positive input on how they could continue developing an item, and also how they could do it cost-effectively.

ALhamad trading post has done this a lot, and some of their final products are excellent re-productions now for their price. The old Market place was where this was done, but I don't think the new market stops venders from doing that.
Markus Aurelius Montanvs
What we do in life Echoes in Eternity

Roman Artifacts
[Image: websitepic.jpg]
#47
It doesn't, but maybe putting an area specifically for it could improve the number of people who do it, and also the number of people who give thier input.
#48
Couple points to note:
- On the preceding page David explained exactly how we expect people to behave here. It implies that even if you are positive you are factually right, you cannot presume it is fine to then proceed to lay out your position. Even on RAT, there is a time and place for everything. And tone always matters. Perception, the way your words are interpreted by others, is essential on a forum such as this where all meaning has to be conveyed in words and emoticons only. It is by definition impossible to decide for yourself how your words are going to come across, so err on the side of caution if you suspect the subject is sensitive.
- To avoid this particular problem, product reviews will be in its assigned marketplace sub forum.
- There is now also a dedicated product development forum where manufacturers are welcome to request feedback.
Greets!

Jasper Oorthuys
Webmaster & Editor, Ancient Warfare magazine
#49
I have offered to support development in the public domain, which I prefer over PM's as all benefit, AND my views/data may be challenged by others while giving opposing evidence, adding to my own knowledge. So yes, I think it is an excellent idea! It could also save much in development costs of items.

Fine, Jasper, point taken. I will limit my comments to those actually inviting them and will be particulary carefull to be constructive.
Salvete et Valete

Nil volentibus arduum


Robert P. Wimmers
Archeologie Beleven!
>http://www.ferrumantica.eu  (The NEW Fabrica of Vvlpivs!)
#50
Now Robert, I never meant to put the blame on you, you are a good guy and meant well, but it just came out wrong in this case is what I think happened.

EDIT:

Also, Jasper, I think it might be better if Marketplace has it's own subsection, with the original sub-forums underneath "Marketplace" and then a Product Reviews Forum and a Product Development Forum more readily visible.
#51
Folks,
I think Robin Brown nailed it on the head in what RAT should inspire to be and where it currently is at today.

The impression I get today is "B".

Seven years ago, this forum was overflowing with helpfulness. I had a hungry appitiete for Roman History and wanted to get involved in the reeanctment thing but I honestly had very little clue as to what the heck I was doing. Guys like Ade Wink, Matt Amt, Rusty Myers, Matt Lukes, Matt Lantaigne and Martin Moser to name just a few helped me out tremendously.

Today, I do not see that as much and I don't see a lot from the above mentioned gentlemen either. Why has that happened?

One place I would look at, is look at comments posted on the re-enactment and reconstruction page, especially over time on the showing off our impressions, as well as the smaller posts on specifically recreated items.

Are we trying to help everyone, or only folks we know personally in our own units and groups whihc could easily lead one to believe that elitism exists or a us vs. them perception.

Are we all doing what we can to be helpful and encouraging to all or are criticisms and choice of words/or lack of actually discouraging.

Jasper, I appreciate your intial post. Lack of action, responsiveness and intervention needs to be improved upon with the moderators.

Myself include, we also all need to be more encouraging and helpful.

As for Rusty, I don't expect to see him back really anytime soon, if ever.

R/
Mike Daniels
a.k.a

Titus Minicius Parthicus

Legio VI FFC.


If not me...who?

If not now...when?
:wink: <img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/icon_wink.gif" alt=":wink:" title="Wink" />:wink:
#52
Here is a text by a British guy writing about Germans.
Quote:14. SAY WHAT YOU MEAN

English is not about what you say, but how you say it. German is both, but more the former. Since what Germans say tends to be direct and prepared with minimal ambiguity. Ruthlessly efficient, if you will. In English, for example, if you want something to do something for you, you do not merely go up to that person and ask them to do something for you. Oh no. That would be a large faux pas of the social variety. Instead you must first enquire about their health, their families health, their children’s health, the weather, the activities of the previous weekend, the plans of the upcoming weekend, the joy or ecstasy related to the outcome of the most recent televised football match, then, finally, you can say "by the way", after which you begin the actual point of the conversation, before reinforcing that you feel guilty for having to ask, and only if it's no trouble, but would they be so kind as to possibly do this little thing for you. You will be eternally grateful.

Germans do not dance around the point in such elaborate, transparent displays of faux-friendship, they just say "I need this, do it, by this date. Alles klar”? Then walk off. Once you've practiced regularly getting to the point, you may find the way to be short but very enjoyable.
As for saying what you mean, Germans have rightly realised that sugar coating is best reserved for cakes. If I'm having one of my momentary delusions of grandeur I know I can rely on my German girlfriend to bring me swiftly back down to reality by saying something like "get over yourself, we're all born naked and shit in the toilet".
It is from here, in case you want to read the whole thing:
http://venturevillage.eu/how-to-be-german-part-1
(For Robert, as from my prey-Bavarian (Beute-Bayer) point of view he as a D(e)utchman is of course more "German" than I am... :evil: :woot: )

This is within Europe. I think in regard of all this the last sentence of rule #1 is the most important for all users. For many it is completely unclear, as it probably was here for Robert, that he might come over as unfriendly or so.

On the other hand: I think the old marketplace was structured so that a negative product review in a vendors section was basically a no-go, (apparently not for deepeeka, though, but they only post about / for their products and nothing else anyway) since you wrote in "someones" section, and naturally would behave differently, i.e. nicer. Also, I think everybody kept to this. I was glad to see the old marketplace go, though. But a solution where vendors are the ones to need to "invite" critique might not be ideal, I think. Then I´d rather favor NO advertising on the board and see a discussion about any item allowed. I could still find shops and retailers via google. The flow of information for all is the sense of this forum, as far as I thought. I don´t think RAT was meant to be a place where commercial interests of vendors are more important than the discourse about the Roman Army and its material culture. One also could simply allow only "authentic" producers in the style of the EXARC site to advertise, and keep the retailers out. Mostly retail-business does not further the discussion, rather simply "sucks" information from it. The current situation with Rusty and Robert seems to have been discussion vs. business. I think, i.e. my opinion is, RAT should value the discussion more.

In case someone wonders about me posting in the dioskouri helmet thread recently: I wrote in advance to moderators, that this thread actually should be in marketplace (at least as to the forum rules). Moderators said (after a while): "No, it´s OK as it is." As anyone can see in the thread, before I started my critique I also asked there "Shouldn´t this be in marketplace?" Since it stayed, I assumed critique and discussion would be appropriate. Had it been moved, I hadn´t posted what I did. And I think it was absolutely right to post what I posted where I posted it.

Maybe it would make sense to think about how important this advertising in the marketplace actually is. A product development section: sure. A review section sure. But in comparison to these two, how important is the advertising section? Isn´t the benefit from discussion more important for this forum? I think a " signature banner only" policy for advertising could be enough, if at all.

As you can see I am also involved with a retailing business. But I judge the discussion factor / knowledge factor to be of more importance, personally. But then, I don´t have to live of selling the stuff.
Christian K.

No reconstruendum => No reconstruction.

Ut desint vires, tamen est laudanda voluntas.

LEGIO XIII GEMINA

[Image: BannerAER-1-1.jpg]
#53
"Friends... Roman's and Countrymen... lend me your ears!"

Can I throw in a "Newbie" perspective?

I am an American, and a Christian, and on top of that a Full-Time Pastor of a small church. (Not that any of that really means anything here...)

I am not a part of a reenactment group because there are none in my area. I have high regards for everything and EVERYBODY on RAT. I don't care if you are American or European... I know many people here from Canada and India as well.

I came to RAT for help... in finding Historical Facts, Pictures, diagrams, drawings, leads to information and where I could locate it etc. I have made purchases from American, European and Indian manufacturers and distributers. I have also purchased on Ebay. Ugh... Yes... I have made that mistake too!

I came into the whole Roman Empire from a totally different perspective and may never become a Reenactor. I have had a vision of owning my own Roman Armor since about 1987. I am 50 years old now. For someone like me... I have had a TOTAL misconception of what Roman Armor was really like. I have had to "De-program" my mind and my thinking, because most of what I was exposed to was "Hollywood's" impression. In fact... I didn't know that Chain-mail existed before King Arthur! (By the way... when you are done reading this... forward it to 10 other people and your wish will come true.) Kidding.

I never heard of Hamata, Segmentata, Squamata... etc. I visit this forum 2-3 times a day, sort of an addiction. But I come here for many different reasons. I want and desire to know the History of the Roman Army... I want to know the intricacies of "What we now know" to the best of our abilities.

To me... Re-enacting is "living human history." Then there are museums... Book writers... Archeologists, and manufacturers. All play a vital role of intriguing and salting other's interest in the Roman Army and culture.

In what I am doing, with the armor I am slowly purchasing... I would never want to offend a Historian, or a Re-enactor with equipment that was portrayed wrong. Like a legionnaire only wore his sword on his Left side right? No I mean it was left on his right side... I get it, I get it... Legionnaire on his right hip Centurion on his left... I am learning. But I am learning because of the wealth of knowledge that is being shared and offered here. (Not to many other places I can go that will help direct me to the right answers.) I have been ripped off in buying things that say... "New" "Never Used" "Authentic" "Museum Quality" (And honestly the last helmet I purchased was heavily dented, rusted, and deeply scratched and that was before it was shipped since there was absolutely no damage to the shipping box.) I have bought things that were actually covered in mildew and mold.

Buyer Beware!

I have posted pictures of things I was going to purchase and people here have been able to tell me... Don't waste your money! and I have avoided some of those mistakes. I have bought "Junk" for the same price I could have purchased something more authentic and accurate. I have asked for opinions. And believe that "Everyone is entitled to their own opinion... as long as it is my own!" "Kidding."

I also have to look at it from the perspective of... If you cannot tell from 15 feet away that the two rosettes on the side of my helmet are 2.5 millimeters to far apart... but that bugs you... then while you are looking and measuring them I have the opportunity to thrust you through with my sword... ( I mean seriously... because there isn't a lot of totally intact historical finds... and the manufacturing process wasn't automated like it is today... isn't it possible that the craftsman was off on #3 Gallic "G" and #5 Was good and #6 But then #7 was too close?)

I recall that there was a Forum... somewhere.. in Rome, where you were thrown into the middle and then... you had to fight for your life! Smile I think I just jumped in both feet!

When you read something in writing... "It can really only mean... what the writer meant it to mean." So what do I mean? What am I saying?

Don't ruin what you have here! PLEASE!

Don't let opinions inflict wounds that will not heal. And don't take an offense to an opinion that has been made. We are all out to achieve some similar goals... Bringing to life History, a history that not one of use can give a "First hand account" but we are trying our best to bring to light what it "May" have been like.

Once again... PLEASE. Don't ruin what you have. I for one need your experiences to help me make the best "IMPRESSION" that I can, with the resources and talents that I have available at this time.

Keep the Peace!
In His Service and Yours...
Patrick
#54
Hahahahahaha! OK Christian, I will admit to being one of the Germanic school of thought and ways. My German however is at this moment not good enough to pass as one, except when speaking German to a non German Tongue .

Still, even cultural differences do not excuse personal attacks, trolling, unsupported claims or (not so) veiled allegations. In my many years posting on this forum I have not had any posts deleted and have received one warning, which was when I clashed with Hibernicus of Leg Hispania and made a very unfriendly comment about how I viewed his organization of the Leg Hispania in chapters. That intervention was fully justified and I edited that post. So I do try to “not be a German” :wink:

@Patrick You are very correct in assuming there were variations in the making of items. As a blacksmith, I have studied swords, knives, slave shackles, trying to understand how they were made and there are no two exactly alike. They can be classed into types, however, so a replica is often a model of a certain type. A reproduction will conform to a certain find, so has provenance. These are also more difficult to make, as that does require near mm accuracy. I think there are very few people on this forum who will challenge the placements of your rossetes on your helmet.
Salvete et Valete

Nil volentibus arduum


Robert P. Wimmers
Archeologie Beleven!
>http://www.ferrumantica.eu  (The NEW Fabrica of Vvlpivs!)
#55
Quote:Here, on this forum, the consensus of opinion of the Staff and Moderators is that criticism is fine, but rudeness is not.

I know you moderators very carefully consider your actions, and you should be lauded for that, but hopefully you have thought through what you are saying. If you come out and proclaim you will now moderate “rudeness,” people will expect you to do so. Do you really want to deal with the “Gaius was mean to me!” complaints? Is it best for us members to expect you to monitor our niceness?

The culture on RAT is for a very active moderation team, but sometimes less is more. To be perfectly honest, I think you guys sometimes try to do too much. I have always volunteered whenever I have seen Jasper ask for help – but not to be a moderator. I believe a lighter touch might be more beneficial than even tighter and more intrusive interventions.

To be clear, I think you guys do an excellent job for what you have listed as your goals. Laudes, kudos, and thank you. So this isn’t a complaint, simply an opposing view, a different idea on reaching the same goal of a happy and healthy forum, and something to consider.
David J. Cord
http://www.davidcord.com
#56
I chose my signature because, as a retired lawyer, I know what it means and thought it appropriate for this forum. Robust debate is fine and, if someone disagrees with you, don't take it personally.
Michael King Macdona

And do as adversaries do in law, -
Strive mightily, but eat and drink as friends.
(The Taming of the Shrew: Act 1, Scene 2)
#57
Aquilifer wrote:
Interesting, I've been on RAT for over a year and have kept track of the Overwhelming majority of the threads, and haven't noticed even slight trolling against anyone really.


Then may I suggest you read my posting, especially the one titled “The Roman Legion and the Cosmos.” This is a good example of how some members on this group employ ridicule as a means of discussion. However, it does not stop there. Years ago I also received an email from someone pretending to be a RAT moderator telling me to delete my postings. Being new to the group I complied not knowing any better, but all I could do was delete my dialogue and not those of the responders. This made me wonder why the RAT administrators couldn’t just delete the whole discussion if it was upsetting to them.

I’ve had personal insults hurled my way which were not warranted at the time. I have one member who whenever I post likes to make indirect comments about trolling. I know he is referring to me and I do not like it as I do not troll. Another member, who posting has been deleted, stated RAT was a good forum until I came along. This personal attack occurred after I refused his offline email to share my research with him. RAT’s claims it is about “open minded discussions” but so far what I have experienced when I offer evidence it is that it is not even acknowledge and is replaced by ridicule or putting words into my mouth then twisting it in some poor attempt to discredit me.


Steven
#58
I am sure that every one will agree when I say that the vast majority of discussions/topics in RAT are conducted with earnest civility and willingness to assist/respond/educate/exchange or present ideas/further insight etc. Of course, once in a while, there is, thank God(s) quite rarely, the occasional incivility, sometimes a product of (bad) humor, at other times a product of frustration, misunderstanding or even, in a few cases, outright scorn. I think that very few of us have never acted in an unseemly manner and I am sure that most of us know when we do so. I know I have deleted or edited some of my posts after my good sense had taken over my momentary frustration. We are all educated adults and since it all has become a major issue these days, maybe we should decide on exactly how strict mod control we want? Until now, mod intervention has been, as I see it, quite light, I personally thought it worked, but after reading some of the posts I fear that a number of members would disagree and at times have felt offended and unprotected. Would we like mods to intervene more often? Would we like them to intervene when no one has issued a complaint more often and not just in really blatant cases of rules abuse? Would we like them to edit or delete posts whenever they personally judge that irony or incivility is in play? If mods do so, would the "offended party" be satisfied or would they then complain that disciplinary measures (like bans) should also be taken? Do we want mods to act freely and trust their common sense or do we need stricter and better defined rules? Maybe a poll should be held to better understand how members feel about all this? I know I am generally happy with the freedom I feel even if some times I have been (for good or no good reason) angered by certain posts or posters but I would not object to stricter mod intervention also.

On the other hand, there should also be pointed out that everyone is entitled to one's own opinion and way of thinking. Being an "elitist", a "traditionalist", a "denier" etc is within one's rights and such diversity actually makes the lives of many of us here more interesting. If no one or very few agree with one's point of view, one should not feel offended or threatened, which often happens, as long as replies are posted in a civil manner. So what if some or all are very picky about their gear? If one is not, then good for him... And of course, in order for any comment to be deemed offensive it has to be directed at members of this forum in a personal or impersonal manner. Of course attacking nationalities or races may offend members of this forum and should be avoided as much as personal attacks. But saying that General A was a stupid sob or that a certain item is crap can by no means be considered offensive. At worst, such comments can be accused of discouraging constructive discussion. Do we want to guard against such comments too? I personally hate such "humor" but others may not.

As far as promoting merchandise is concerned, we have to first decide whether RAT should function as a window display or as the forum it is. Criticism can be bad for the manufacturer, sometimes it might even sound vicious, and then as members, they naturally feel offended although they have actually sustained no personal attack. No one likes to hear that what they produce/sell is bad/not authentic/crap, but on the other hand they are always happy when they receive favorable reviews... Although my opinion might be met with disagreement on that matter, I think that if manufacturers/resellers want to promote their ware in RAT they should take any bad criticism directed at them as they would any positive criticism. RAT is a forum, not a mall. If someone asks my opinion on sword A, I sure as hell have the right to give it to him without fear that I might offend the manufacturer. If the stuff is good, then no amount of "malevolent" criticism will harm its chances to sell.
Macedon
MODERATOR
Forum rules
George C. K.
῾Ηρακλῆος γὰρ ἀνικήτου γένος ἐστέ
#59
Quote:Aquilifer wrote:
Interesting, I've been on RAT for over a year and have kept track of the Overwhelming majority of the threads, and haven't noticed even slight trolling against anyone really.


Then may I suggest you read my posting, especially the one titled “The Roman Legion and the Cosmos.” This is a good example of how some members on this group employ ridicule as a means of discussion. However, it does not stop there. Years ago I also received an email from someone pretending to be a RAT moderator telling me to delete my postings. Being new to the group I complied not knowing any better, but all I could do was delete my dialogue and not those of the responders. This made me wonder why the RAT administrators couldn’t just delete the whole discussion if it was upsetting to them.

I’ve had personal insults hurled my way which were not warranted at the time. I have one member who whenever I post likes to make indirect comments about trolling. I know he is referring to me and I do not like it as I do not troll. Another member, who posting has been deleted, stated RAT was a good forum until I came along. This personal attack occurred after I refused his offline email to share my research with him. RAT’s claims it is about “open minded discussions” but so far what I have experienced when I offer evidence it is that it is not even acknowledge and is replaced by ridicule or putting words into my mouth then twisting it in some poor attempt to discredit me.
Steven
Actually, I said that... you quoted his quote my friend. I'm sorry to hear this, I will certainly search for and read that thread.

EDIT: @Macedon

Agreed, it's like the government. Too little control and there is anarchy, too much and it's an autocracy. Mod interaction is good, but too much is bad. If you always give the offended what they want, things will just get worse. Sometimes people have to "deal with it." In the case of the Marketplace though, Bad Reviews means lost profit. So things I think do have to work a little differently there. Money is what makes the world go round after all. Y'know, besides Inertia and all that.
#60
What's the point of a review if it isn't honest? If someone sells a product that does not do what they say it does then I'd like to know before I waste my money. When buying online that is even more important because you never physically see the product beforehand. If the Marketplace is only going to allow positive comments then there is no point having the Marketplace at all since it can't be trusted.

I have no problem with cheap reconstructions suitable for budget kits or display purposes so long as that is how they are represented when they are advertised.
Author: Bronze Age Military Equipment, Pen & Sword Books


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