Why not have elections?

Discussion in 'SF Open Government' started by GeoffP, Jan 23, 2007.


Should we vote for Mods on SciForums?

  1. Yes, voting for Mods is a great idea

    7 vote(s)
  2. Yes, voting for Mods is a great idea for tearing down the system

    3 vote(s)
  3. No, I like the present system of contemptible unrepresentation

    9 vote(s)
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. GeoffP Caput gerat lupinum Valued Senior Member

    I was considering the issue of the flagrant moderator deficiency SciForums seems to be running - as well as the numerous and fascinating scandals involving Spurious, James and that cocker spaniel - and the following occurred to me:

    Why not have an election for mod positions? One could limit the voters to those people who actually post on SciForums, and with only a half-dozen or so voters most elections could be rounded up quite quickly. Or there could be vote-getting scandals, voter racketeering and sock puppeting - in short, that which makes democracy so great.

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  3. spidergoat Venued Serial Membership Valued Senior Member

    What sort of deficiencies are you talking about?
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  5. GeoffP Caput gerat lupinum Valued Senior Member

    Well the mod: poster ratio is dangerously close to falling below 4:1. Something should be done soon.
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  7. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

    sciforums is privately run, and I assume the administrators have a vision for the kind of site they want.

    Now, I can't speak for them, but I don't think that a pure democracy is part of that vision. A purely democratic site is one where the members effectively vote on everything, and in so doing determine the ethos and content of the site. Such a site requires a more or less hands-off approach by administrators, whose only role is to provide the forum software and server space. Suffice it to say: most sites on the internet are not of this type. They are set up by people who want to establish a particular kind of community with a particular focus or purpose.

    How a site is moderated is one of the factors which greatly determines its ethos and standards. Therefore, the choice of moderators is one of the most important powers that site administrators should retain if they want to be able to determine the direction a site takes.

    A site in which all moderators are popularly elected has the potential to lose sight of the overall aims and goals of the site, in favour of a kind of cronyism and popularism. This is not necessarily a bad thing - it just depends on what the administrators want. Take MySpace, for an example of a site largely driven by popularism, with no underlying, unifying ethos.

    My personal view is that sciforums is not currently, and has never been, a site driven primarily by popularity, and I don't think I'd like to see it go down that path.

    On the other hand, what would I know? I'm obviously biased, and my whole argument is just seeking to shore up my own tenuous and wildly unpopular position as a supermoderator.

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  8. Dr Lou Natic Unnecessary Surgeon Registered Senior Member

    Maybe we should have an election for "the people's moderator", one who ultimately has no power, but can express the concerns of the people to the real moderators and be taken ever so slightly more seriously than normal people.

    The main benefit of this would be the fun of an election, complete with smear campaigns and baby kissing.
  9. Bells Staff Member

    We used to have moderator elections. And the result was a plethora of sock puppets and "friends" suddenly discovering these forums to vote and then disappeared when their choice was made a moderator. Those were fun times.

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    .. And yes I was being sarcastic. I am sure those of us who remember those days, don't remember them that fondly, although they did make for some interesting times.

    As for the scandals, well I don't think I have actually seen a proper scandal on these forums for a long time, but when they do occur, they tend to add a bit of spice to the place, if not embarrassment and lots of *rolled eyes* at how silly some people can actually get. Gosh, the last sex scandal was quite a while ago. Then it all dies down again and we find ourselves returned back to the void and the normal postings continue.

    It is the vicious circle that is Sciforums.

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  10. Athelwulf Rest in peace Kurt... Registered Senior Member

    We had not one, but more than one sex scandal?

    Details, ma'am, I must know the details!

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  11. Plazma Inferno! Ding Ding Ding Ding Administrator

    Geez, I feel you all see me as a rampant emperor who's just waiting to cut heads for wrong interpreted glimpse or a joke.

    I take seriously each member of SciForums. Other moderators too. Each member could express concern and deliver complain or suggestion to me directly or to one of moderators.

    There's no need for tribunes or envoys.
  12. spuriousmonkey Banned Banned

    I elect myself.
  13. Baron Max Registered Senior Member

    I always like to think that sciforums is a private party to which I've been invited by the owner. If he wants to make rules, so be it. If I don't like the rules, I'm not forced to join the party. And if I violate those rules, then he has a perfect right to kick me out. I mean ...he owns the fuckin' house, right?

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    So? You've been hired as the bouncer at the party. No one who is prone to violating the rules likes the bouncer, do they?

    James, if I were the "supermoderator", this site would have only about three members ...maybe less!

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    Baron Max
  14. spuriousmonkey Banned Banned

    I like myself.
  15. Nickelodeon Banned Banned

    James R Rules.
  16. Athelwulf Rest in peace Kurt... Registered Senior Member

    I feel that this current system gives us more competent moderators than the democratic method. I feel that if we start using the democratic method, it will factionalize us and encourage an analog to political parties, pitting member against member, mod against mod.

    As much as I value democracy (duh, Democrat here

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    ), I don't think it would be detrimental to continue with the status quo, as long as members could always voice their concerns and have the confidence that they're not falling on deaf ears.
  17. Prince_James Plutarch (Mickey's Dog) Registered Senior Member

    An easy way to remedy the sockpuppet nonsense, is to enforce a 1000 post vote rule.

    No one under 1,000 posts can vote in any moderator decision.
  18. Killjoy Propelling The Farce!! Valued Senior Member

    You paraphrasing a Ted Kennedy Speech ?

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