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Suggestion/Request Vision, Goals, and Objectives for the Stratics Forums

Stinky Pete

Sage
Supporter
UNLEASHED
To be honest if we hired new moderators at this point they'd be too bored to stay and very difficult to train due to the severely decreased amount of reports. There were more reports in my first month as a mod than in the last year combined. Hard to train a moderator when there aren't any good examples to let them practice on and not much drama left to deal with.
If you need more reports.....

holiday.gif
 
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Victim of Siege

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Governor
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They all used to be active. Which is a continuous problem on the staff. We hire people, have a good solid amount of active staff for a year, then they all disappear and we end up back at 1-2 people moderating everything with nobody else signing up. When Arch was hired, I was training 4 other moderators too. When Riyana was hired, again I was training 3 other people too. Now they're each the only ones left from their hiring groups. I'm the only one left from my hiring group when Nexus and Zuckuss hired me. Nexus and Lestat are the only active ones left from the entire 1997-2014 era. They're volunteers so we can't make them keep showing up, and it seems counterproductive to remove their staff abilities for inactivity when they do sometimes reappear for a month or so, but we have removed a lot of inactive staff who hadn't logged in for years over time.

To be honest if we hired new moderators at this point they'd be too bored to stay and very difficult to train due to the severely decreased amount of reports. There were more reports in my first month as a mod than in the last year combined. Hard to train a moderator when there aren't any good examples to let them practice on and not much drama left to deal with. Content creation is a much more needed area for staff at the moment, since we have like one person making new content, news articles etc. after hiring more than 10 reporters/editors a few years ago.
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Lord Nabin

High Council Sage - Greater Sosaria
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Glorious Lord
It is great seeing all the open and honest comments about the Stratics Community Vision.

I especially appreciate the openness that is being provided by the board leadership. A lot of boards would just focus on the status quo and see conversations like this as a threat. Well done team.

Maintaining a space for conversation without stupid drama and endless conspiracies that can never be proven one way or another is important I think moving forward and I like the unleashed area that provides a place for those people who like the drama and conspiracies.

While in the decade past a major push was made to become the "official forums" for UO created a tightening of rules, guidelines, and processes, I think it is fine to go back and open up some of the doors which closed in the effort to align tighter and refocus on the Stratics Community. Building the community in turn supports and grows the game.

Opening the platform to what the community is interested in discussing and talking about is a key part of that. I don't feel we should let fear of what might happen get in the way of that. Basic guidelines for the mods to guide how people interact in a conversation is fine.

Scripting - notice I am not using the word cheating here. Open the discussion and let it happen. Doesn't mean you have to have a data base or wiki created about it.

Scammer alerts - Sure you might get a false accusation here and there. The community seems to sort that out pretty quickly itself. Don't make it Stratics job to vet the information. Just provide the space for the discussion and the guidelines on how to have it respectfully. The rating systems seem to work pretty well as people engage in them. Maybe recognize a good trader every now and then with a special tag or label to encourage participation.

Community events - maybe be a little more intentional about recognizing community efforts. I know this can be staff driven or volunteer driven. There are some fun members out there that like to post about positive news events and happenings. They just get tired of the stupid drama. Over time the crew will grow.

RMT - This existed for a very long time on Stratics with little to no problems. Regardless of anyone's personal feelings about RMT, it is part of the community daily activities. If you want to set a guideline to keep it just between players and they have to use the rating system that's fine. I could see making a limit to keep out the RMT websites. That is who the fight against RMT is really all about. You already know who those people are anyway. The average player looking to cover their monthly subscription cost or securing that PS they need for their new pet isn't.

Freeshards - I think a lot of interesting ideas come out of these. Explore everything UO.

A good place where people can go to engage in all things related to UO really doesn't exist.

Stratics can be the place where you can go as far down the rabbit hole as you would like. Plenty of community to talk with and learn from. Provides the player with all the information so that they can decide on what works for them.

The question is, what are the next steps to opening some doors and which doors are the next to open.
 

Stinky Pete

Sage
Supporter
UNLEASHED
How about getting rid of this ****ing language filter? We're all adults here. Obviously I can't call @Archnight a *****, but I should be able to say he's *****ing about something.
 

Captn Norrington

Stratics Forum Moderator
Moderator
Professional
Stratics Veteran
UNLEASHED
Campaign Supporter
How about getting rid of this ****ing language filter? We're all adults here.
As was mentioned in your thread about it in Unleashed, there's no way to selectively disable the filter in particular places, and even though we're all adults it has been observed over the years that unfiltered cursing etc. actually does bother a surprisingly high amount of posters. The language filter is in place for things like that, and also because some people read Stratics while their kids are nearby and don't want the kids to see the unfiltered language that could potentially be on their screen.

The Archnight stuff is getting a bit excessive too, since this is like the 6th time you've directly tagged him in this thread in an unflattering way, not doing that going forward would be appreciated.
 

Lord Nabin

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Glorious Lord
*looks up from his old dusty book in his chair by the fire*

"Wrong Answer" *raises a brow and gives his fingers a little twitch*

Dispiro Malas back to Unleashed with you.

I like that Archnight character have a little respect.

*settles back into his chair by the fire and waves off the smoke from Evils departure*
 

Nexus

Site Support
Administrator
Moderator
Professional
Stratics Veteran
Stratics Legend
Wiki Moderator
UNLEASHED
It is great seeing all the open and honest comments about the Stratics Community Vision.

I especially appreciate the openness that is being provided by the board leadership. A lot of boards would just focus on the status quo and see conversations like this as a threat. Well done team.

Maintaining a space for conversation without stupid drama and endless conspiracies that can never be proven one way or another is important I think moving forward and I like the unleashed area that provides a place for those people who like the drama and conspiracies.

While in the decade past a major push was made to become the "official forums" for UO created a tightening of rules, guidelines, and processes, I think it is fine to go back and open up some of the doors which closed in the effort to align tighter and refocus on the Stratics Community. Building the community in turn supports and grows the game.

Opening the platform to what the community is interested in discussing and talking about is a key part of that. I don't feel we should let fear of what might happen get in the way of that. Basic guidelines for the mods to guide how people interact in a conversation is fine.

Scripting - notice I am not using the word cheating here. Open the discussion and let it happen. Doesn't mean you have to have a data base or wiki created about it.

Scammer alerts - Sure you might get a false accusation here and there. The community seems to sort that out pretty quickly itself. Don't make it Stratics job to vet the information. Just provide the space for the discussion and the guidelines on how to have it respectfully. The rating systems seem to work pretty well as people engage in them. Maybe recognize a good trader every now and then with a special tag or label to encourage participation.

Community events - maybe be a little more intentional about recognizing community efforts. I know this can be staff driven or volunteer driven. There are some fun members out there that like to post about positive news events and happenings. They just get tired of the stupid drama. Over time the crew will grow.

RMT - This existed for a very long time on Stratics with little to no problems. Regardless of anyone's personal feelings about RMT, it is part of the community daily activities. If you want to set a guideline to keep it just between players and they have to use the rating system that's fine. I could see making a limit to keep out the RMT websites. That is who the fight against RMT is really all about. You already know who those people are anyway. The average player looking to cover their monthly subscription cost or securing that PS they need for their new pet isn't.

Freeshards - I think a lot of interesting ideas come out of these. Explore everything UO.

A good place where people can go to engage in all things related to UO really doesn't exist.

Stratics can be the place where you can go as far down the rabbit hole as you would like. Plenty of community to talk with and learn from. Provides the player with all the information so that they can decide on what works for them.

The question is, what are the next steps to opening some doors and which doors are the next to open.
I'm not going to speak for everyone, but I'm open to sharing my thoughts on some of the things you said here, others are just too complex for me to do a quick comment on.

I don't think any of us are against people making threads like this or the discussions they contain, as long as they are civil. That hasn't always been the case in the past, but it's been a process of reevaluation and baby steps as we try to evolve Stratics since the official forums launched.

Unleashed has been something we talked about on and off for a while, the major update to the site just seemed like the right time to add it. I do like that we can use it to feel out topics that have been traditionally taboo on the main forums.

Scripting as a topic has been something we've said before we're fine with people discussing but not in a way that promotes people doing it. Unleashed opens the door on this a bit more, as I mentioned its a great place for us to feel out how people will react to a topic.

Community Events: We'd love to see some, but finding someone with the time and creativity to continually work on them hasn't been easy.

Scammer Alerts: We put a trader rating system in, no one is using it., the main reason is people want to be able to call out folks but do so anonymously and right now that isn't possible. Believe it or not, Stratics' trade forums are a lot like a high school, with various social cliques, we've seen it before where one group will target an individual by reporting posts, only for another group to target these people in turn in retaliation.

Freeshards: I'm not completely against bring them into the fold, it's more of a question of how. I'd rather not mix Freeshards with Official in the same threads, there's so many variations possible with freeshards that threads could get quite confusing. Stratics did support emulators many years ago, that was what UOX Stratics was about, maybe we'll see a return to that in the future, complete with its own set of forums.

There's more I could say on each of these but it's late and the brain is starting to object to rational coherent thought at the moment.
 

petemage

Certifiable
Stratics Veteran
UNLEASHED
I just found it yesterday. Go up to your screen name at top right and hit join user groups then join "unleashed"
Wow that's some serious **** talking going on there. I also had problems figuring how to join (given I didnt try too much), but since I found it now, I am happy to tell that leaving it again just works the same way :D
 

Corwyn

Lake Superior Tabloid Journalist
Alumni
UNLEASHED
I know I'm late to the discussion, but since I only saw this topic today, I'll go ahead and add to the discussion.

I think (and have always thought) that Stratics was a site dedicated to Ultima Online the game. I believe that goes beyond Broadsword or EA's version of Ultima Online, and should include all of the various free shards out there. I've played a few free shards, and it is my opinion that more than a few of them were doing things far better than Broadsword/EA ever did it. They are the ones that truly love the game, and it is a shame that they cannot be heard here just because they choose to attempt to make the game better than the official version, or for the players, choose to play a much better (to them if nothing else) version of the game we all love.

Also, since this is not an the official boards of official UO, I can't think of a reason why script discussion, RMT or any other topic about the game should not be discussed here.

Stratics should never feel restraint. It should be the goal to bring in as many people that love UO in whatever form to the best board for the game.

Just my opinion.
 

Lord Nabin

High Council Sage - Greater Sosaria
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I know I'm late to the discussion, but since I only saw this topic today, I'll go ahead and add to the discussion.

I think (and have always thought) that Stratics was a site dedicated to Ultima Online the game. I believe that goes beyond Broadsword or EA's version of Ultima Online, and should include all of the various free shards out there. I've played a few free shards, and it is my opinion that more than a few of them were doing things far better than Broadsword/EA ever did it. They are the ones that truly love the game, and it is a shame that they cannot be heard here just because they choose to attempt to make the game better than the official version, or for the players, choose to play a much better (to them if nothing else) version of the game we all love.

Also, since this is not an the official boards of official UO, I can't think of a reason why script discussion, RMT or any other topic about the game should not be discussed here.

Stratics should never feel restraint. It should be the goal to bring in as many people that love UO in whatever form to the best board for the game.

Just my opinion.
You are right on time friend. Not late in any.

You had a great piece of wisdom here which could evolve into part of the new vision for Stratics...

"Stratics should never feel restraint. It should be the goal to bring in as many people that love UO in whatever form to the best board for the game."

Alright everyone.

Let's take this line, the idea/concept and my challenge to you all is to bring this visions statement into a 9 word vision statement

Go!
 

DreadLord Lestat

Social Media Liaison / Forum Moderator
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Let's take this line, the idea/concept and my challenge to you all is to bring this visions statement into a 9 word vision statement
Maybe I am jaded from dealing with places and their mission statements but I believe all a mission statement does is tell people what they want to hear, not necessarily what the company or organization really believes in. I am up for some change in Stratics and have brought up many ideas with the other board members, I was the one that pushed for the unleashed section since No Holds Barred was removed years ago by a previous owner. Instead of a vision statement, why don't we go with ideas that have been posted here. Maybe a top 5 or top 10 list of things that have been discussed that you would like to see implemented. Of course, don't hold back ideas. Keep them coming. I cannot promise any change because it is a board, but there are some ideas that have been expressed here that I have also brought up for suggested changes.
 

Lord Nabin

High Council Sage - Greater Sosaria
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Glorious Lord
Maybe I am jaded from dealing with places and their mission statements but I believe all a mission statement does is tell people what they want to hear, not necessarily what the company or organization really believes in. I am up for some change in Stratics and have brought up many ideas with the other board members, I was the one that pushed for the unleashed section since No Holds Barred was removed years ago by a previous owner. Instead of a vision statement, why don't we go with ideas that have been posted here. Maybe a top 5 or top 10 list of things that have been discussed that you would like to see implemented. Of course, don't hold back ideas. Keep them coming. I cannot promise any change because it is a board, but there are some ideas that have been expressed here that I have also brought up for suggested changes.
Well, You start with a vision, Set some Goals, Then some objectives to accomplish those goals. All executed with a strategic plan. I get it that a lot of companies talk about a mission but do not execute.

Your challenge as a board with the guidance of the community is to see a Vision and execute it as follows. Every move should be compared against the strategic plan and VGO's while moving forward. If it is in alignment you go. If it is not you pass.
 

DreadLord Lestat

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That sounds all great but as I said, I think it would be better to get ideas in place to see what the members want before making any mission statements and goals. Before a company is started and a mission statement is created, they have already gone through all of what they want to do and set things into motion. Lets try walking before running and jumping. Lets just start with 5 items that have been discussed that people would like to see changed and possible suggestions on ways to implement them. Sometimes people have a great idea without any idea of how it will work.
 

Lord Nabin

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That sounds all great but as I said, I think it would be better to get ideas in place to see what the members want before making any mission statements and goals. Before a company is started and a mission statement is created, they have already gone through all of what they want to do and set things into motion. Lets try walking before running and jumping. Lets just start with 5 items that have been discussed that people would like to see changed and possible suggestions on ways to implement them. Sometimes people have a great idea without any idea of how it will work.
I am good with that Friend. Outline the 5
 

Corwyn

Lake Superior Tabloid Journalist
Alumni
UNLEASHED
Let's take this line, the idea/concept and my challenge to you all is to bring this visions statement into a 9 word vision statement

Go!

First: The Mission Statement (in exactly nine words, I might add).

"Stratics is to unite everyone that loves Ultima Online."

In my mind, this is exactly what Stratics should try and do. As I said before, it goes beyond EA/Broadsword's version. It should be for anyone that does play or has ever played UO in any of the hundreds of forms it has taken over the past twenty plus years.

That sounds all great but as I said, I think it would be better to get ideas in place to see what the members want before making any mission statements and goals. Before a company is started and a mission statement is created, they have already gone through all of what they want to do and set things into motion. Lets try walking before running and jumping. Lets just start with 5 items that have been discussed that people would like to see changed and possible suggestions on ways to implement them. Sometimes people have a great idea without any idea of how it will work.
I'm not sure it would be prudent for me to post five things that I'd like to see changed if I'm also supposed to add suggestions on ways to implement them, so for now, I'll start with one that I think probably needs to be addressed first and foremost.

I'm not sure if I'm the only one, but I still go to uo2.stratics.com to get to the message boards, and every time I do it, I cringe. The information on those pages is so outdated. If I was a new player and happened upon this first, I'd swear the game was dead. The news section was last updated in 2015 I think. The guides are outdated. It shows the age of the game better than the game does. It needs a face lift. I understand UOGuide is typically used for information. However, that information isn't even 100% accurate. Besides, I personally don't want to have to go back and forth to find information and discuss things on the boards. It should all be in one place. I'm sure I'm not alone in this.

I believe there is an effort to update the information. However, I'm not sure how far along it is. I also realize UO is a complex game, with so many different sub-systems, it's not even funny. There may not be enough people to do it or maintain it. But it should be done.

There's something to start a discussion at least.
 

Corwyn

Lake Superior Tabloid Journalist
Alumni
UNLEASHED
No sooner did I hit "Post Reply," I decided that since the mind is running, I'll go ahead and post something else.

I think it would be a positive move for Stratics to allow freeshards to have their own message boards within Stratics. I'm not sure the logistics of it all, since I don't know exactly how these boards are structured, or if these boards are on their own dedicated server, if the server is owned by Stratics, etc. However, I think it would go a long way towards bringing other UO fans to the boards for discussions on the various parts of UO that make the game great to play. Perhaps Stratics could attach a fee for a sub-board for freeshards to utilize, and perhaps even have a place to advertise these free-shards for other fans.

There are a lot of ideas kicking around in my head, and I'm at work so I don't necessarily have the time to type them all. And again, I'm not sure if the above idea is even possible, so I'll stop there.
 
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Nexus

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I believe there is an effort to update the information. However, I'm not sure how far along it is. I also realize UO is a complex game, with so many different sub-systems, it's not even funny. There may not be enough people to do it or maintain it. But it should be done.

There's something to start a discussion at least.
That effort would be the Wiki. You’re right all the subsystems of UO are complex, so much so that we haven’t staff members with knowledge of all of them. The Wiki is a place those of you who are knowledgeable of them can share that information with everyone else.
 

Taylor

Former Stratics CEO (2011-2014)
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The vision and mission back in 2014, much of which seems to endure:

Vision

Our vision is to become a pillar of strength and support for games that we represent by creating valuable resources, developing strong communities, inspiring professionalized team members, and amplifying the voices of players and developers.

Mission

We are a diverse community of gamers united by a shared passion to serve the players, assist the developers, and promote the games that we support by: publishing news, strategy, and statistics; strengthening player communities; and creating positive communication between players and developers.

Values
  1. People – Stratics affirms the instrinsic worth of every person and seeks to create opportunities for talented gamers to build careers in the gaming industry.
  2. Community – Stratics is committed to pursuing its mission in a way that is community-led, community-driven, and community-focused.
  3. Integrity – Stratics resolves to conduct its operations to the best of its ability with honesty, fairness, and transparency.
  4. Communication – Stratics seeks to facilitate open and honest communication within the communities that it serves between readers, players, developers, and publishers.
  5. Passion – Stratics is devoted to creating an environment that unites diverse team members through a shared passion for gaming, because we believe that working hard and playing hard go hand in hand.
 

Lord Nabin

High Council Sage - Greater Sosaria
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The vision and mission back in 2014, much of which seems to endure:

Vision

Our vision is to become a pillar of strength and support for games that we represent by creating valuable resources, developing strong communities, inspiring professionalized team members, and amplifying the voices of players and developers.

Mission

We are a diverse community of gamers united by a shared passion to serve the players, assist the developers, and promote the games that we support by: publishing news, strategy, and statistics; strengthening player communities; and creating positive communication between players and developers.

Values
  1. People – Stratics affirms the instrinsic worth of every person and seeks to create opportunities for talented gamers to build careers in the gaming industry.
  2. Community – Stratics is committed to pursuing its mission in a way that is community-led, community-driven, and community-focused.
  3. Integrity – Stratics resolves to conduct its operations to the best of its ability with honesty, fairness, and transparency.
  4. Communication – Stratics seeks to facilitate open and honest communication within the communities that it serves between readers, players, developers, and publishers.
  5. Passion – Stratics is devoted to creating an environment that unites diverse team members through a shared passion for gaming, because we believe that working hard and playing hard go hand in hand.
I remember reviewing these in detail back then my friend they were very well done. One of the things that gave me good hope for the community and future of Stratics. On point and built with purpose.

There could be a few adjustments to reflect the needs of the current community here.
 

petemage

Certifiable
Stratics Veteran
UNLEASHED
The vision and mission back in 2014, much of which seems to endure:

Vision

Our vision is to become a pillar of strength and support for games that we represent by creating valuable resources, developing strong communities, inspiring professionalized team members, and amplifying the voices of players and developers.

Mission

We are a diverse community of gamers united by a shared passion to serve the players, assist the developers, and promote the games that we support by: publishing news, strategy, and statistics; strengthening player communities; and creating positive communication between players and developers.

Values
  1. People – Stratics affirms the instrinsic worth of every person and seeks to create opportunities for talented gamers to build careers in the gaming industry.
  2. Community – Stratics is committed to pursuing its mission in a way that is community-led, community-driven, and community-focused.
  3. Integrity – Stratics resolves to conduct its operations to the best of its ability with honesty, fairness, and transparency.
  4. Communication – Stratics seeks to facilitate open and honest communication within the communities that it serves between readers, players, developers, and publishers.
  5. Passion – Stratics is devoted to creating an environment that unites diverse team members through a shared passion for gaming, because we believe that working hard and playing hard go hand in hand.
All those positive thinking just to have the developers stab Stratics in the back, opening their own wiki, opening their own forum and prohibiting developers to post here.

Stratics should care about the players that keep that game running. Be it by keeping UO alive through developing freeshards and even new clients, or those that rather throw their money into Bonnie and her gold seller friends' retirement fund.

It's all designed to split the UO community even further. Bonnie and Petra must be laughing her asses off seeing how Stratics still abides to their rules without getting any benefits out of it.

Feels like betting on official UO was the wrong horse. Easy to say in retrospect. Freeshards unfortunately were never welcome here but nowadays they seem to put way more resources into UO development than BS, make more marketing and in general keep the game alive.

While official UO has become a cash grab for a few dozen friends of the producer.
 
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Dan(Tasanar)

Visitor
Professional
UNLEASHED
Open source free shards and all these new open source, community driven, clients are the future.

Easy to use, easy to play with, professionally developed. Big Discord and forum communities backing them.

We'd be happy to discuss with Stratics a way to better draw focus to these UO communities.

Stratics has always been a strong anchor for UO. If someone has heard of UO, there is a good chance they know Stratics.
 

Stinky Pete

Sage
Supporter
UNLEASHED
I know that we have only had unleashed for a little while, but it is becoming more apparent to me that some of the rules need to be modified a bit just from reading the conversation there. I think 3rd party programs, no matter how we feel about them, are part of this game no matter what. To not be able to mention the name of one or post a screenshot where one is being used is ridiculous. Same goes for freeshards, I don't want to see Stratics become the "advertise your freeshard here" website because there are 10 other sites where you can do that, but to not be able to mention the name of one because it could be considered advertising it is dumb. It should be obvious when a post is made that is blatantly advertising freeshards or 3rd party programs and with a bit of moderation those posts can be removed and the accounts actioned. Same with outing scripters and RMT people, there is no good reason we can't have a section on the regular boards where people can tell their stories of who these people are and what they do or did where the rules against trolling and whatever are still enforced.

I don't like the idea of allowing all freeshards to be freely available for discussion, besides the fact that it always turns into, "oh, that shard sucks, this one is so much better," is that they all have their own forums to discuss that shard and that shard alone. Not to mention it would be an organizational nightmare and the average user may have difficulty figuring out where to post regarding shard specific issues and may often post in the wrong section causing even bigger issues. I believe that we need to keep stratics focused on "official UO," mainly because without stratics, all we have is the "official" one.... and we all know what that is like. It's just dumb that we can't say, "Oh, you find fishing to be one-dimensional and lame? (Name of freeshard) does this, this, and this and it's very interesting. Maybe try it out sometime."
 

Lord Nabin

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While I see your point about the Freeshards, Stratics is more than just a forum that discusses UO related games. I could see an area open for freeshards to be discussed, maybe have a section. Like you said most have their own forums anyway. They probably do not need a section for each one unless they would like their own. Kind of like how Guilds can have their own area.

Maybe a relationship could be established to just link to their forum page along with a link from their to Stratics.

I think it's ok for people to enjoy UO with whatever level of pay to play RMT, 3rd part programs, etc as they want for their experience. Some of it is provided by Broadsword, some of it is player run. Personally I dislike the RMT websites, seen to many friends taken advantage of there. I would prefer not to see them marketed here on Stratics. Player to player I think is fine. It is happening anyway.

While I have a bunch of fun across the shards I truly enjoy the hard work and time it takes to work my character up on Siege. It's a good vacation place for me as I walk around picking up reagents in the forest. I swear those mongbats are everywhere out there and they are tough! When was the last time you ran through the forest looking for some Ash so you could cast a fire arrow spell to defend yourself? It's that good!
 

Captn Norrington

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Maybe a relationship could be established to just link to their forum page along with a link from their to Stratics.
This is something I've talked about a little with Tasanar. He mentioned that the free shard communities don't really have an unbiased site to act as a statistics/linking page because each site benefits by skewing the data to make themselves look the best. He said they'd be interested in collaborating with Stratics to set that up if we wanted to, that way there could be an unbiased section of the site like the Hunters Guide and Wiki which displays things like links to all the free shards, how many players they have, special things each one of them has, developer contact information for each of them etc.

I think it's a cool idea personally.
 
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