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I realize now you put this in two places, I'll give the longer answer to my thoughts here.

While I believe constructive criticism is important for making better guides, it isn't something everyone wants to deal with. This is the forums, not school. As a result, having a system with a rejection system built in place, even if all of the team members had best intentions giving their reviews, will scare people away. Even in my GAT reviews, I point out a lot of things I don't like and give a lot of criticism to the point I think I'm probably pickier than the other team members. However, I wouldn't be surprised if someone thought my reviews were too intimidating, especially since I rarely gave my approval despite never giving my disapproval except maybe once or twice if at all.

I feel like the GAT's review system seems to fail on the philosophy of get better and have a better guide because it prioritizes approval over anything else. In fact, I found it incredibly distasteful other people not only thought it would be easier to disapprove, but go looking for guides to disapprove them. Even if unpopular guides need to be removed, there shouldn't be parties of people who want nothing but to tear things down.

 

On my subconscious fear of tearing guides down, I believe that motivated my approval of an upvote only system, the other motivation being my lack of experience and desire to get a plan of action put forward. I don't have much experience with up vote and down vote systems, I assumed it was bad to establish downvotes because it could result in the same problem of people being scared away by criticism. I was also desperate to get things moving, at the time the GAT was dysfunctional and Matt's guide wasn't going to be addressed, much less have Cat's guide get a re-review for her updated version.

 



 
1 hour ago, Luminesce said:

And open-ended, no one has to vote with their post, or give particularly constructive criticism/praise.

 

The quality of the approval or disapproval is dependent on the quality of the review. If someone doesn't put a lot of effort into their review, maybe skimming the document to see if nothing horrible in their eyes jumps out of them and double checking its tulpa related, their review is as useful as an up or down vote. On the other hand, a guide review that was the product of hours worth of thorough trading, taking notes, and thought out responses will be much higher in quality. If there is no system demanding high quality reviews, then the reviews themselves will likely have tainted quality overall. Even I didn't put hours of effort into reviews before I joined the GAT, I didn't feel like it was worth the effort.

Even though up votes carry this flaw, they at least make it easier to filter guides, which was an element that was requested to be preserved. Comments in a thread can't easily be used to filter guides while up votes can, giving this system a leg up from comments alone.

 

While I appreciate the idea of a system where everyone reviews, the problem with this idea is it's not applicable. It's a time and incentive investment most people cannot provide. In addition, if you don't know who's reviewing when, you don't know what kind of feedback you will get. An imperfect GAT should at least be consistent. Unfortunately, a popular vote is easier to use, easier to understand, and makes sorting guides easier.

 

I would like to implement a different system to preserve some of the positive qualities of the GAT review system, but I disagree that this is the way to go about it. Even though it would be nice to have a system where everyone was motivated to give the best advice, it's just not possible.

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21 minutes ago, Ranger said:

While I believe constructive criticism is important for making better guides, it isn't something everyone wants to deal with.

  

Well too bad, that's literally how posting things on a forum works. Every single thing anyone says is open to criticism/discussion, especially something meant to be a resource for others to learn from. You can't just let people say whatever they want and then promote them for a ton of people to see, without any criticism allowed. Of course, that's what any approval or upvote system is meant to deal with, which isn't in question.

 

21 minutes ago, Ranger said:

The quality of the approval or disapproval is dependent on the quality of the review.

 

What kind of argument is this? Have you even thought about what you're saying here?

 

"We can't guarantee consistent high quality and depth of reviews and comments, so let's remove literally all forms of input other than +1 / -1"

 

My system has been replying to give advice on submissions for years now without ever once wanting to be on the GAT or have "say" in the submissions' approvals - we just want to help shape quality content. And I fully believe the dissolution of the GAT would actually encourage more people to do this. Guide approval isn't a contest, the singular goal is to help people with tulpamancy. There's no reason to remove what potential depth of reviews/criticisms we would have to make everything "even" through pure upvote culture. 

Just the tiniest weight of having to make any post whatsoever is all it takes to cancel out most of the harmful effects of upvote culture. Honestly that's the same concept behind using a forum rather than real-time chats like IRC or Discord, even if someone decides to make a tiny post, there was still a bare minimum of thought put into it before hitting Post.

 

If anything, having it be purely upvote based takes away most of the motivation to post criticism/advice/praise in the first place. And it absolutely does not help people maximize the quality of their submission to just see a lack of upvotes - that really doesn't tell them anything.

Edited by Luminesce

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As of right now, there are not enough people interested in the GAT to move forward with any alternative solutions. The problem is it can't be done, there are not enough people who are interested in writing reviews. -Ranger

 

Not familiar with this forum and my extended response isn't being saved when I switch pages.

 

I'm not saying keep an optional GAT, but rather anyone can give feedback to guides looking for it in a section specifically for rough draft guides seeking feedback. If this was implemented, I'd be happy to contribute my experience reading and reviewing dozens of guides if people are looking to improve (as Cat saw when I reviewed their guide). 

 

2 hours ago, Luminesce said:

I think the only system I'm comfortable with here would be an upvote (and downvote) system that only allowed voting if you postedA post with a yay-or-nay (or neutral, for general criticism) attached.

 

At that rate, barely *anybody's* gonna vote. I've noticed a trend with both r/Tulpas and Tulpa.info and that a *large* majority of users are lurkers. Like, nothing's stopping you from leaving your criticisms on a guide, but I know a lot of people who want to support a guide, yet not only have to make an account, but also *post* on that guide just to express their support. (This is common on Tulpamancy/Plurality Discord servers, but a lot of people just can't think of anything to talk about and end up lurking anyway.) I can understand the accountability, but really, you seem to be quite paranoid about this system being abused when again, it hasn't been implemented yet. Reddit doesn't require you to post to upvote/downvote things and like I said, nobody's abused that for guides/resources, especially because of the archive system. At minimum, it requires you to have a Reddit account.

 

If the system proves to be problematic, what's preventing it from being altered? Just like how the GAT system was proven to be problematic, it was altered in hopes of finding a better solution. Things can change and it's okay for change to take place, but trying to get *everyone* who wants to support a guide to also leave their thoughts on it is just unrealistic, and this is coming from someone who has over 20,000 words-worth of guide reviews written down on sticky notes. It's not like the old system didn't encourage non-GAT members to write their own reviews since they wouldn't matter on the approval/disapproval...

 

At least with this system, everyone's criticisms stand on even footing.

 

18 minutes ago, Luminesce said:

Well too bad, that's literally how posting things on a forum works. Every single thing anyone says is open to criticism/discussion, especially something meant to be a resource for others to learn from.

 

This kind of behavior was a *major* reason why I stop interacting with these forums for over three years; this is a negative attitude to have that isn't respectful. If an author states that they are not looking for feedback, then just... don't comment? Respect their wishes? Why is that so hard to do? Unless a guide has something *seriously* wrong with it like legitimately dangerous advice, is written by a known bigot, or even just contains literal bigotry/violates the rules, there wouldn't be such a dire need to comment if they don't want feedback. If you're concerned about algorithms boosting controversial guides, then just don't participate in that feedback loop if the author isn't seeking feedback while also positively boosting non-controversial guides you think deserve more attention. If you do give feedback on a guide not looking for criticism, I'd say they have no obligation to heed it. You can take a horse to a watering hole, but you can't make it drink.

 

29 minutes ago, Luminesce said:

If anything, having it be purely upvote based takes away most of the motivation to post criticism/advice/praise in the first place.

 

From my experience on r/Tulpas, this is simply not true. I myself have reviewed guides and posted my own resources on there, and have received feedback that isn't nearly as harsh or discouraging as Tulpa.info. I personally have looked though literally every submission (in submissions) posted on this site and for the *mass* majority of submissions, the only people who reviewed were GAT members anyway, thus I doubt changing it to an upvote system would change much on that front, especially because this place is not that active anymore.

 

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8 hours ago, Luigi.exe said:

If an author states that they are not looking for feedback, then just... don't comment? Respect their wishes? Why is that so hard to do?

 

Because the Guides section isn't a platform for anyone to just show up and say whatever they want on a loudspeaker ... without at least minor approval from the people they're talking to. I feel incredibly strongly that no one should be allowed to speak to so many people and not hear what they have to say in response. Not that that's strictly a problem here, since people will be able to post no matter what system we choose, but it's a principle I think needs to be endorsed.

 

They won't be forced to take any advice or criticism they're given, of course, but it has to be allowed to be present.

 

---

 

I'm not worried about the system being "abused", I'm worried about upvote culture biasing what gets upvoted. If people can just click once to upvote something without even slight thought put into it, that will bias what gets promoted. To retain any quality at all, I really feel people should at the bare minimum have to post "I like it" to vote. There's so much more that goes into even that short of a post compared to a one-click upvote.

 

I actually don't think we should have (pre-existing) post requirements or register date requirements, specifically so that lurkers are never limited from giving their opinions. Obviously if 10 new accounts registered on the same day all post their approval on a submission we can tell something's up, but I've seen tons of people's first posts be on guides that helped them, and often times they had just registered an account just to do so.

 

All we'd need is someone with a GAT/Staff-like role to count up the approvals in each thread and move them to the right section when they reach that point. I could do that, if need be, since I view all new posts on the forum every single day and always have. I don't want to be a mod, though. Also, existing staff can do it just as well, if they're willing to keep up with new replies

 

---

 

Don't really have strong feelings about anything else you said

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  • 4 months later...

Honestly I'm not even sure (and I was never sure) what the purpose of the GAT was.

Is it gatekeeping? Is it to give the guides section a "perceived" quality by filtering out "bad guides"?

What constitutes a bad guide in this heavily subjective phenomena?

 

If we want to argue about it, all guides essentially boil down to "you want to do X? just use this symbolism which worked for us" and more often than not I've seen newcomers just reading up everything in sight and making the wrong assumption that what is written in those guides is sacred and no other way is possible. Having the GAT there would enforce this even more, as it would give the feeling that the "selected" guides are even more sacred and "not up for debate".


Also I am notorious for being someone who heavily dislikes the "Reddit" system. Upvotes and Downvotes should only be given objectively and being objective as a human being / tulpa / did system / whatever is just not possible.
While the original idea for Reddit was to use an upvote/downvote to "evaluate" if a post has quality or if it is spam/troll etc, it is mostly used as a "I don't like you" button or "I like you" button, without real judgement.

There's also a "bandwagon" effect in which if a post is artificially upvoted it will be kept upvoted no matter the quality of the post, while if it starts by being downvoted massively (even artificially) it will be downvoted as well. I've done my fair amount of tests on this.

 

My honest advice is to just remove any sort of evaluation system and hire a trusted person in the community that can evaluate properly if a guide has potential to be useful or not.

This person would not deny that a guide is posted, but rather give his honest opinions and thoughts on it as a "first comment" so that newcomers are "forced" to read that first.
(and of course, if the guide is spam or obviously bad/harmful he has the power to delete it)
Having one person makes the voting system unnecessary, and stops people from ganging up on the person that writes the guide, rather than the content itself.

Yes yes yes, you would assume that the people who are in GAT are trustworthy and objective, and while some of them are (Sands, etc.) I've seen some sh** that was kinda fightening from some of them.

 

Having no "gatekeeping" would also mean more potential for a truly groundbreaking guide to pop up, which would be filtered out otherwise for being too controversial.

 

Edited by ohItsMatt

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The GAT was broken when they started picking apart every sentence and stripping content they didn't agree with. This is what I saw. My favorite guides were pre-2016. They had more variation and that's what you'd need in this very subjective subject.

 

When the voting community moved toward doctrinal whitewashing, the result would be a bland assortment of rehashed basics. In my opinion.

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By default, I want to say: The GAT is just to keep guides looking professional, and to help people polish up their submissions to read well - and that it shouldn't be moderating the content of the guides.

 

However, some people just have some truly awful ideas that do feel dangerous to endorse with official site approval. Literally nothing stops somebody from writing matter-of-factly "Tulpas represent your anima/animus" or, say, "You have to force your tulpa naked if you want to be able to change their clothes later". Or any other number of ridiculous ideas. Perhaps in an active forum ideas like this get roughed out by other takes, but a guide can be the very first - and only - thing a newbie to tulpamancy ever sees, and they can steer them seriously wrong.

 

So I think the GAT was also meant to keep basically misinformation, as determined by the community discussion and ever-revolving members of the team, from being presented matter-of-factly to newbies. 

 

I can't help but realize whenever people talk about theoretical "GAT censorship of new ideas", they actually mean new techniques. From however well we've kept up with submission activity, we don't really see censorship of techniques, since those are the main value of a creation guide. There might be censorship of aforementioned misinformation/unfounded claims, though I can't remember such instances and would have to go look over a bunch of submissions.

 

Do you guys really think techniques are censored by the GAT? Or just people's baseless claims about the nature of tulpamancy? I don't personally believe people should be allowed to skip the community discussion process of places like General Discussion and go straight to saying how they think things are to impressionable newbies. In my eyes, what would be optimal is letting people who've had plenty of discussion elsewhere write "guides" about how tulpamancy works or discussing core ideas, while letting anyone (with the typical GAT quality approval, just to make sure things read well) write guides on how to do tulpamancy, since everyone is an authority on what worked for them.

 

But I kind of think the forum is past its prime where any real system like this would've been relevant. At this point we should just let people submit guides and have a handful of members say whether they think it's a good addition to the Guides section or not. I would say let it be any old normal members, but without a "Guide Approval Team" - AKA a group of regulars who are required to pay attention to new submissions - I can see a lot of submissions ending up stuck never getting approved because nobody comments on them.

 

 

So to this, I think something like an opt-in Discord role that will be pinged whenever a new submission is posted is a good idea, with a semi-official "GAT" concept still existing so people are inclined to opt-in, but otherwise still allowing literally anyone to comment on submissions. (The role would simply be to help make sure someone is commenting on each new submission)

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Also on a side note, Invision was a mistake

Too buggy and the css on mobile is still broken - something else to think about while reworking GAT.

Edited by ohItsMatt

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I know what I saw and what submitters told me in PMs. I don't pm anymore though and have nothing to do with the GAT and don't care anymore, but I'm just laying it out there. I also think it's possible that the GAT members didn't even know they were doing it. It's automatic to some possibly.

 

I also agree that the new forum format ruined everything and became a lesser service. Perhaps the old format was untenable but this one is a poor shadow of the old one, or convesely, the old format was exemplary here.

Edited by Bear
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On 8/12/2021 at 9:22 AM, ohItsMatt said:

My honest advice is to just remove any sort of evaluation system and hire a trusted person in the community that can evaluate properly if a guide has potential to be useful or not.

 

This is exactly the kind of thing I think should be avoided. Having a single person be an authority on something so inherently subjective is bound to have issues, and this is coming from a system who's the only system that vets resources for a Plural resource server. Such a shame the 5-star system doesn't work with Invision. Also, may I add as a guide author that's been working on a single guide for almost three years and as a person who's scoured the internet for guides to read: I think a major issue in general is the lack of desire to make new resources, let alone review them, even when you don't factor in the issues with the old GAT and Tulpa.info.

 

And just... this place is much less active in general, likely due to forums in general not being very popular anymore in favor of live chats like Discord. People have grown complacent with what we have now instead of deciding to further refine and improve those ideas. The feeling of the old 2012-2013 guides is far more adventurous than a lot of what we have now; people back then had much more motivation and  ideas to share. A lot of modern guides now just feel like working on in-system relationships or just basic things like narration prompts, very few guides that come out now really go in-depth on things.

 

Also, the whole reason I'm here is to ask: what is going to happen to all the pinned GAT posts or the GAT forum section? It's... been about five months since the GAT was officially dissolved and I haven't seen any changes to the submissions section, implementation of the upvote system or anything of the like. Do note: we're not a part of the .info Discord and it's likely we're not going to have any intention of joining anytime soon if those changes were applied to the Discord and not here.

 

I mean, I heard the forum move has been causing a lot of problems (looking at the images being purged from JD's visualization guide) lately, so maybe that has something to do with it, I don't know.

 

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