Absent mods... how long before you demote?

Discussion in 'Member and Staff Management' started by Soliloquy, Jul 5, 2009.

  1. Soliloquy

    Soliloquy Regular Member

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    Occasionally a staff member will either get bored with their duties, or possibly suffer a sudden illness, and simply stop showing up. When that happens, how long before you try to contact them? How long before you figure they won't be back and take the privileges away from the account? Days, weeks, or months?
     
  2. Chris

    Chris Regular Member

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    I'll generally make attempts to contact them after a few days of complete and total absence from the community - many of my moderators (in the past) have made me aware of their absences beforehand, however.
     
  3. FullMetalBabe

    FullMetalBabe Zealot

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    Depends on how many attempts I've made to contact the user with no luck. After certain attempts I'll demod.
     
  4. tryfuhl

    tryfuhl Champion

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    .

    Same exact method as Chris here. Most of us will create a thread in the mod forum letting everyone know of our absenses. We've had a few mods not signed on since the 2nd; it would've been nice had they created a thread, but it's the weekend of the 4th so it's nothing that I'm going to hang over their heads or even make an issue out of.
     
  5. 3Phase

    3Phase Champion

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    I think I'm deciding 90 days with no information from them. I know things come up, mods are volunteers and I want to keep the good ones. And give some latitude. Meaning there have to be enough mods that the absence of one doesn't undo things. But at some point, yeah, for whatever reason it isn't working out and everyone has to move on.

    For me this is another reason not to have friends as mods. If the friend isn't responding ... and especially if I do see/hear from them in other settings. Gets awkward.
     
  6. kev

    kev Regular Member

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    I usually give it about 1 year. I had a super moderator disappear, no good bye, no nothing. Here one day and the next day gone.

    I am more worried about their passwords being saved, and that computer being given away or sold. And then some unknown person suddenly has super moderator access to my forum. That is what worried me more that anything else.
     
  7. tryfuhl

    tryfuhl Champion

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    it would be a good idea to limit their account indeed
     
  8. Chris

    Chris Regular Member

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    You're quite lenient, Kevin. Unless a moderator or staff team member gave me a viable reason (of course), I don't think I'd give them a "free" year before demoting him/her/them.
     
  9. Soliloquy

    Soliloquy Regular Member

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    A year seems too long to give someone the benefit of the doubt. I wouldn't worry about a few days or even a week, but I'd probably start thinking they weren't coming back after a month.
     
  10. Bundy

    Bundy Admin Talk Staff

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    I would give them a week or two, maybe three depending how active they were before hand.
     
  11. 3Phase

    3Phase Champion

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    Actually I have one in this category right now - moved out of boyfriend's apartment, changed jobs ... she got the sympathetic period, but at this point I think she's moved on from modding. Two more may also not be visiting the mod forum any longer. They are both holdovers from the last regime. Modding has changed and I don't think they have.

    It's hard to tell if they are lurking and not posting in the management forum ... but it doesn't really matter. They aren't modding unless they are active in management. I think sticking to 90 days to demotion is the thing to do ... I will know if I need to find someone else.

    Maybe the real question isn't just when to demote, it's how long before finding someone else to do the job. Assuming that MIA mods are being missed ... how long before their absence starts impacting the forum and the other mods.
     
  12. 3Phase

    3Phase Champion

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    Oh I take it back ... one missing mod has just re-appeared in management. Moving threads, everything. The new job must be working out.

    Her last post previously was in March ... had I stuck to the 90 days she would be out of management now. OK, maybe 5-6 months?
     
  13. Soliloquy

    Soliloquy Regular Member

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    I'm glad she's reappeared, but I hope you delicately suggest that next time, a note would be appreciated :)
     
  14. 3Phase

    3Phase Champion

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    It's been tried. :D Might be an argument to have stuck to the 90 days ... if she were out, she couldn't disappear again. Right.


    When you all demote ... do you send a note? What does it say?

    Do you leave the door open for them to say "I need more time but would like to return?" How would you respond if they did?
     
  15. Soliloquy

    Soliloquy Regular Member

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    I'd say something along the lines of "Hi X, I noticed you haven't been active in 90 days and reset your usergroup back to that of regular user for security reasons (to prevent your account from being targeted by hackers). Hope everything is ok and you'll be back with us again soon!"
     
  16. lordtopcat

    lordtopcat Adept

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    When dealing with Absent Mods I make note of the fact that they are volunteers. If I haven't heard or seen anything from them for two weeks, I'll send them an e-mail, asking them if they are still interested in supporting the community and if I don't hear anything from them within the month, I'll let them go.
     
  17. Shelley

    Shelley Regular Member

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    5 years ago I wrote a staff agreement that they had to agree on. It's a little outdated nowadays but this ensured that the staff knew what expectations and limits as soon as they accepted a staff position (below was our staff agreement).

     
  18. 3Phase

    3Phase Champion

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    Shelley that is a great idea. I'm going to do something similar. Not sure everyone is on the same page in their expectations of what it is to be a mod ... especially how often they visit, and what they do while there.


    Yet another question ... what if mods are visiting the forum and even posting in management ... but there is abundant evidence they are not modding? Same thing as not present at all as far as getting mod stuff done. Same questions - what's up? need some time? future intentions?

    vB has an admin panel function that tracks mod/admin activity, who did what & when. I've used that to see who is really moving threads, etc. Some aren't.

    So now the vanished mod has returned (without a word about being away so long,) not sure her head is back into modding (yet,) new thought ...

    60 days of no mod activity ... move to a "mod" usergroup that includes access to the management panel, but pulls mod powers. They have to make a statement they intend to fulfill their mod duties to return to full power. They have 90 days in the alternate mod usergroup to opt back in as a mod, otherwise they are then demoted to member.

    The criteria will not be whether or not they are visiting the forum, but whether they are modding. That will catch both the disappeared and those that retire on the job. It's really about doing the task of modding, as I see it, present or no.

    I think alot of this is communicating expectations up front. I think some mods don't take it seriously if they just take off for awhile ... they may really not realize the impact on overall forum administration.
     
  19. Shelley

    Shelley Regular Member

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    I think in some cases you have to give a little rope. If a mod is contributing but not actually modding then this tells you the person is more of a developer/contributing type of person who doesn't wish to get involved with the politics. As long as you have a member of staff that is modding the members then this should create a somewhat perfect balance. And, on the offchance you notice that modding duties aren't being enforced enough then I think it wouldn't be too much for an admin to take on what wouldn't be a time consuming duty. It all depends, the activity of your forum and if there's an area that is showing signs of holes forming enough for the owner to be concerned about.

    The above agreement worked very well for me and I never had any problem with staff not knowing what is expected from them. The only downside is implementing such an agreement while you have staff as they may take this as an insult. Then again, if you have a good staffing order then they will see the positive side of a staff agreement and know it will help you when you bring new staff to your ranks.


    edit: If a moderator is only posting in the staff room then I would say he/she needs to go. It's all fine that a mod likes to talk in the staff room but a moderators duty primarily falls in the community/public area. I would let this go on for a month or two (probably a month) and then alert him/her of my concerns and then after 2 weeks if it persists then demote.

    Edit again: Ask yourself this. Why did you recruit this person? Chances are because he/she contributed as a member helping the community. Helped in bettering the site he/she is now staff at. Everyone has a life outside of the internet but you can easily make your mind by comparing the contributions they made as a member and what they are contributing as a staff member. In most cases the choice is easy it's only whether the staff member takes this as an insult after demotion and the person demoting has the balls.
     
  20. Soliloquy

    Soliloquy Regular Member

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    whenever I've had to impose new rules on existing mods, I've always told them it was because we needed to be better organized as the forum expands and more people join the team. So far I haven't heard any grumbling.
     

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