Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Tell us how we can improve the night ops forum. Your suggestions and complaints are welcome.
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Psychlonic
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Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Psychlonic » Fri Dec 30, 2011 1:01 am

NONET is slowing down to a crawl more and more each year and the &T clones - none of which have an active night ops thread anymore - are starting to crumble. I know there is still a lot of interest in this subject out there but nobody knows there's a home for this kind of discussion.

We need to come up with some ways to keep this alive and keep it fun for everyone. I'm not a huge forumite and so I don't socialize in very many places, especially not the big ones like Reddit, 4chan, and definitely don't touch social networking sites like Facebook or MySpace. So I don't know where good places to recruit would be.

Let's get some ideas flowing. What else can we do? Any changes we should make to our structure? The internet is changing but I think small enclaves like this still have a place since we are still very fringe and not accepted in the mainstream. We just need more roadsigns to get here.
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Xanatos » Fri Dec 30, 2011 9:56 am

Since my Location adequately describes my social life I don't know how to "outreach" to others about Night Ops. The trouble with this sort of activity is that it's not exactly something you can advertise in the street about. One of our newest members mentioned that they stumbled across our site on 4chan, and from what I can tell that place is... well, like this:

Image

Urban Exploration sites & forums would be a good place to start, if anyone knows of any. They seem like the kind of crowd that would be suitably interested in Night Ops.
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Absent » Sat Dec 31, 2011 2:15 am

I help moderate a similarly fringe site dealing with a different subject, but I've talked about some of this shit before. I'll go plug this site and see who's interested.

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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby fx1k » Wed Jan 04, 2012 8:22 am

This could be a bit difficult. As I see it, NONET isn't something to shout from the rooftops about, but it isn't going to get any more activity if the current situation continues. I don't have much input at the moment, but I wanted to show my interest in increasing site activity.

We have tons of members. Why not a mass e-mail? That may bring members who have strayed from NONET back into the community. It could also re-spark the interests of those who never got into night opping, but created an account. I don't know how effective this would be. Probably not very effective at all. I doubt that those who created accounts check the e-mails that they used for their accounts very often.

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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Xanatos » Wed Jan 04, 2012 10:43 am

Mass email sounds like a good idea. There have been a few members who've joined, posted in a few threads and seemed to show a genuine interest in the activity before disappearing into oblivion (hopefully not getting killed on their first op). They may have been caught up with other things at the time and forgot to check back to NOnet, so an email would remind everybody that we're still here.
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Illusion » Thu Jan 05, 2012 3:08 am

Psychlonic wrote:NONET is slowing down to a crawl more and more each year and the &T clones - none of which have an active night ops thread anymore - are starting to crumble. I know there is still a lot of interest in this subject out there but nobody knows there's a home for this kind of discussion.

We need to come up with some ways to keep this alive and keep it fun for everyone. I'm not a huge forumite and so I don't socialize in very many places, especially not the big ones like Reddit, 4chan, and definitely don't touch social networking sites like Facebook or MySpace. So I don't know where good places to recruit would be.

Let's get some ideas flowing. What else can we do? Any changes we should make to our structure? The internet is changing but I think small enclaves like this still have a place since we are still very fringe and not accepted in the mainstream. We just need more roadsigns to get here.


Possibly Infiltration?

I would be careful about Urbex communities though, as in my experience they can be very clicky - and despite working my way up a few, I've ditched them all now. Too many armchair explorers, and most of them are major wannabe photography critics.

4chan - No.
Reddit - Never really used, seen some good stuff on there at times though.
FB etc - Fuck Social Networking.

Word of mouth perhaps. I don't know. I mean we grew from &T for fucks sake - we could probably recruit from anywhere if you look at it that way!
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Secant » Thu Jan 05, 2012 4:29 am

So far, most of our members have come from night ops threads on &T (or its clones), or from word-of-mouth. I don't think there has ever been any sort of organized awareness campaign for the forum. It's a tough problem, because it's not clear if such a campaign would open us to attack from those who would silence us. I'm open to suggestions, though, as long as they don't involve social networking sites - it'll be a cold day in hell when nonet gets a facebook page.

Also, on a technical note, automated mass email doesn't work on this web host - the mailserver is configured to ignore bulk emails. In the past, this was worked around by one of the mods volunteering to send the emails manually, and it was a huge expenditure of time and energy. If we're going to use mass email, we had better come up with a really good message.

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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Illusion » Thu Jan 05, 2012 4:43 am

Secant wrote:So far, most of our members have come from night ops threads on &T (or its clones), or from word-of-mouth. I don't think there has ever been any sort of organized awareness campaign for the forum. It's a tough problem, because it's not clear if such a campaign would open us to attack from those who would silence us. I'm open to suggestions, though, as long as they don't involve social networking sites - it'll be a cold day in hell when nonet gets a facebook page.

Also, on a technical note, automated mass email doesn't work on this web host - the mailserver is configured to ignore bulk emails. In the past, this was worked around by one of the mods volunteering to send the emails manually, and it was a huge expenditure of time and energy. If we're going to use mass email, we had better come up with a really good message.


This is my worry. We need to target specific individuals really - and as such, I can only think of word of mouth. It's a very tricky thing; I think if the activity goes up that will solve the issue to be honest. Nothing puts *me* off a forum more than posting, then an hour later refreshing and seeing nothing changed. I mean, compared to some forums this is actually quite active.

I stick by the theory of increasing direct user-to-user interactions first, will lead to an increase in the forum as a whole.

Secant; I have a mahoosive web hosting package with 1and1, including all sorts of mail options - if I can help let me know. If we do mass mail, then please don't do a "We miss you one".

Wait a while, get some really good discussions going and do a "You're missing this..." one - even if it means a HTML formatted email with pictures featured in specific threads. I doubt I'm the only one who features pictures in most of my experiences, if not gear threads are always a source of cool looking things and good discussions!
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Absent » Thu Jan 05, 2012 7:53 am

I definitely agree with most of the suggestions here. I think one of the major problems we face is getting people to come back, not just for this website, but for every website. Getting people to look at a website is easy, getting people to actually come back and interact is more difficult. Especially since most people, in my experience, have never used online discussion forums before. Perhaps the site gets a lot of traffic, but people don't think to join the forums?

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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby fx1k » Thu Jan 05, 2012 8:25 am

Absent wrote: Perhaps the site gets a lot of traffic, but people don't think to join the forums?


I think this is possible based on what I've seen. There have been several occasions where I have been the only member on, but it has said that six guests were online. However, a number like that seems a little outrageous to me.

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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Illusion » Thu Jan 05, 2012 7:32 pm

fx1k wrote:
Absent wrote: Perhaps the site gets a lot of traffic, but people don't think to join the forums?


I think this is possible based on what I've seen. There have been several occasions where I have been the only member on, but it has said that six guests were online. However, a number like that seems a little outrageous to me.


I actually think some of these could be existing members to be honest. I doubt I'm the only one who can't keep away even if I'm not posting..!

There have been -old- members pop up at random too; TheTorch, Enfaded Serenity and I'm sure I saw another one when I was reading an old thread of mine last night. For these just to pop in after long periods of inactivity - it shows that they are still lurking around..
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Psychlonic » Fri Jan 06, 2012 4:41 am

My main concerns have pretty much been covered but just to recap,

- The main source of new members - the &T clones - have no link to us.
- Night ops obviously isn't something that can be advertised just anywhere given its nature.
- Given said nature plus the relative youth of the website, we have no reputation. Contacting individuals may work, but how to we create the incentive to take a look without seeming like spam?

As far as social networking goes, I wasn't even close to suggesting a page for this. Rather, messaging contacts anyone might have that could possibly be interested in this and nothing more. This is only if any of you have accounts and know people like that and aren't afraid to drop the URL to them. The gain on this is obviously minimal.

It's been stated elsewhere on here but the thing is that interest in this exists. Lots of people [think they] would enjoy night time exploration and testing one's self in the dark from all walks of life. While we pulled from fringe sites, that's not the entire target. Reddit specifically came to mind because I talk to several people unrelated to this website who post there but are similarly interested in such things.

The question is, how do we reach out to people like this without mainstream whoring ourselves out and do so in a convincing manner that entices people to not only sign up, but actually get involved?

Maybe we need to revamp the homepage somehow to help beginners along. You have "resources" on the side, sure, but when you come here does anyone else get the impression that this place is seemingly built around people who are already experienced in the matter? One of the appeals of the original &T threads on this was that the first page laid it all down. It described what infrared (the user, for those who don't know) did in simple terms and sparked immediate interest.

So maybe we need more of an "in your face" main page if that makes sense. Big links to random tutorials or an introduction featuring a cliffhanger night-op story that draws a new visitor in. I'm only brainstorming ideas here in hopes that it will jog thoughts for you guys too, hopefully you can tell what I'm wanting to accomplish with the front page at least. We need to really put the FUN into night ops.
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Xanatos » Fri Jan 06, 2012 8:00 am

Photos on the front page might help so people can actually see what it's all about. Although given the stealthy nature of NO it's rather hard to take photos of something you're not even meant to see. Perhaps some of the Dare pics.
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Illusion » Sat Jan 07, 2012 5:46 pm

Xanatos wrote:Photos on the front page might help so people can actually see what it's all about. Although given the stealthy nature of NO it's rather hard to take photos of something you're not even meant to see. Perhaps some of the Dare pics.


I offered a few times in the past to dump up some photos, I think we've even discussed what type of photos before - and had a few ideas.

Best wait a while for Secants input - as the site itself seems to be his baby!
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Absent » Sat Jan 07, 2012 7:03 pm

Speaking of which, I thought there was a site redesign underway?

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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Illusion » Sat Jan 07, 2012 9:52 pm

Absent wrote:Speaking of which, I thought there was a site redesign underway?


I wasn't sure if it was common knowledge; but obviously!

I had a chat with Secant the other day, and it is underway - and looks pretty much done. It's similar to the current one - simplistic, dark and does the job without having lots of pointless gunk.

Thinking of it again; it may be worth digging out some suitable photos. Perhaps a photo suggestion thread? Or a thread just to share op photos.
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Xanatos » Sun Jan 08, 2012 1:35 am

The N.S.E.F.I.O.T. thread is pretty much that, although if you want to have a separate photo thread I think we can do that.
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Secant » Sun Jan 08, 2012 3:33 am

Yes, the existing site is pretty horrid, it looks straight out of 1997. I'm sure it drives people away right off the bat. The redesign will feature pictures on the front page from oppers who have given permission for me to use their work. If any of you reading this have pictures you would consider allowing me to use, please PM me.

Psychlonic, I really like the idea of spicing up the main page with a night op story or something else to give new visitors a flavor of what night ops are about. The trick will be to do that without revealing anything untoward. Maybe an excerpt from Infrared's original post woudl be appropriate.

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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Illusion » Sun Jan 08, 2012 7:04 pm

What size images?
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Illusion » Mon Jan 09, 2012 3:05 am

Right, we need a two way approach:

1 - Word of mouth.

2 - Online.

Number 2 is the hardest as this developed from totse, a place where you could talk about chemistry, discuss classical literature, get relationship advice, talk about explosives, discuss films, programming... and so on in one huge forum. Here, we're rather more specific - but more broad than any similar forums.

We need to be harsh and critical on ourselves - without losing what we've got. If we want to get urban explorers - we need to realize the differences we have with other UE forums - UER, 28DL and so on... Then we need to let visitors see that those differences are good things - and can be a huge advantage. For example, I wrote this - http://night-ops.net/forum/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=1122

We need to perhaps do similar for each group we're targetting - and have them on display for people to see, so they can say 'well I think photography is a load of pants but UE has appealed to me before' or 'I think UE is stupid, but I do enjoy lockpicking and freerunning' or any of the other topics we discuss. We need people to understand - 'We are not an x forum, we have tried to define NO but it never works - we are an x, y, z forum. We have no label - we have techniques, discussion and collective experiences though'.

If we can get people to see beyond the differences of what their used too, and see the similarities - or the potential - then we can get them. If we can get them to see - 'Yeah, they discuss x - but I don't actually need to post on that; it doesn't interest me' - then we don't have to compromise who we are, our identity, yet we can let the community flourish.

This approach is workable. Look at UER and the forums you can subscribe too - there's lockpicking and so on on there. They have a similar outlook on gear too. We all remember that UE website that colour coded it's explorations and referred to them as missions too.. Definitely approaches similar to this website.

I've used UE as an example - because it's my background as such, but it goes for every community we're targetting. I don't want us to lose our identity; and I say this with one of Psy's reasons to resign as admin in mind we can't shun those who are here for different reasons. We all have one common reason; and that should be enough.

Psy's resignation said a lot more though; I was genuinely shocked when I saw that thread, and honestly - more than slightly worried about the forum. Psychlonic wanted a level of quality that I admire and also want, he put a hell of a lot of effort into this forum "carpet bombing" it with ideas and I am genuinely disappointed to see that we've lost him as admin, and his expectations that have gone with it. It raises a big question about the attitude of certain members too.

Which leads me on to the bitter part.. Basically the huge elephant in the room. It may sound harsh; but it must be said.

Come on guys, how can you not care about skills? Seriously, why are you even on this website if you don't want to have some quality about what you do? Psy appeared to feel guilty for wanting good quality and having high expectations, things that raise the community as a whole - bare this in mind when you read the claims below. I know personally when I started I was different than I am now, but I do read certain threads at times and ponder "what the fuck?". This is another thing; why would we aim to get more people to a website if there's even a *shred* of embarrassment about specific threads - I wouldn't be comfortable inviting people in with some of the discussions. Lets be brutally honest about this..

Would you honestly feel comfortable inviting people into a forum where supposedly someone plans on robbing a department store by CUTTING A HOLE IN THE BLOODY ROOF?

Where someone else that claims to have done a lot of dare ops but then concedes he had an asthma attack running to his car to shoplift, so he then decides to make $20,000 by counterfeiting banknotes?

Someone who supposedly burnt a pedos house down, his mates all managed to run 10KM in.. erm.. 2-3 minutes - and he has under 10 posts and never seemed to post again.. Oh! Also, as a precaution he deleted his friends MSN and Phone Numbers.. yet posted it on an internet forum. :roll:

These master criminals of course, are on a website where a few clicks away there are people asking how to sneak out of their house without their parents knowing. (Hell, we have guides on that kids..)


Nobody believes you guys who post as though you're in oceans eleven - you're not. By posting stuff that is obviously made up you're making yourself a joke and further dragging the community down. It's only laughable when you post like that and have a disclaimer in your signature, because then I actually do believe 110% that its all a figment of your imagination.

Similarly, wording a thread about, essentially, sneaking out your parents house and going for a walk in the middle of the night - as though you've managed to beat The Great Escape and trek across the border. If it's the first few times - awesome - you're getting out there, it's difficult, and I honestly applaud you for making the leap; but still..!

The worst bit is, sometimes I feel I have to post photos in an experience to demonstrate I actually did do it. I'm hardly getting into fort knox - I'm proud of what I have done (towers, locked down filming locations, a landmark or two.. then the usual shit) - but I still feel like; "I dont want people to read this and feel how I feel reading some of these things..".

Don't get me wrong, there are a fair few of you who get out there and do stuff - no matter how big or how small; and I truly salute you. Well done for doing anything, resisting the urge to make up a huge lie and enjoy your e-pen0r growing in size. You guys, please stay - please post more, and tell people more like yourselves; we need you and we can make this into something good.

Perhaps though, if we want to make this into something to be proud of - something active and exciting... perhaps we need to be honest with ourselves 110%, possibly make things worse by setting down some "bullshit detecting" measures and calling people out where necessarily (then dealing with them appropriately) and then building up from there?

I only post this as I like it here. It's the only place I always come back, and even when I go I always make sure I keep reading - yet these are the only reasons I know of that I go in the first place.
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby V-- » Mon Jan 09, 2012 10:09 pm

To person above, replying in order:

1: Leave the "supposedly" out, please.
2: Sorry, I thought everyone with two functioning braincells could understand it when somethings exaggerated a little, never counted on you reading it.
3: Don't like posting, prefer reading.
4: Nothing interesting to post. Not everyone has such an adventurous life as you.
5: I quote: "precaution".
6: I can't post things because some random guy I never heard of and I'll never see/meet/speak with might think it's fake. I don't believe your posts, now you can't post anything anymore either. We'll both shut up, deal?


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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Illusion » Mon Jan 09, 2012 10:31 pm

V-- wrote:To person above, replying in order:

1: Leave the "supposedly" out, please.
2: Sorry, I thought everyone with two functioning braincells could understand it when somethings exaggerated a little, never counted on you reading it.
Yeah, but just how much did you exaggerate - the whole thing?

It's this attitude that my rant is also directed at, do you really feel the requirement to exaggerate to a bunch of strangers who you'll never meet? This goes for everyone - just post what you've done. No Shakespearean works of fiction, nothing worded like you've just read the latest Tom Clancy book and think "this guy doesn't have SHIT on me.".

3: Don't like posting, prefer reading.

4: Nothing interesting to post. Not everyone has such an adventurous life as you.
heh, I detect a bit of sarcasm there.. I don't feel the need to post everything I've ever done, on the contrary I generally only post if there's something to be learnt from what I've done.
5: I quote: "precaution".
I fail to see the workings of a mind that feels it appropriate to delete two trustworthy (must be trustworthy right? You just all went out and burnt down a house together...) friends from their phone and msn - then post it on a forum that is publicly accessible and easy to sign up. Perhaps I'm over-thinking this as I've been in situations where I've had my computer confiscated and what not; but if you felt the need to remove evidence from your PC (in the case of an MSN contact) - why did you feel the need to contaminate the PC with evidence in the form of forum postings?

In fact - I don't even see how an MSN contact is evidence compared with posting a thread detailing everything you did.

6: I can't post things because some random guy I never heard of and I'll never see/meet/speak with might think it's fake. I don't believe your posts, now you can't post anything anymore either. We'll both shut up, deal?
If I wanted to be particularly anal I'd say that an arson attack/attempted murder would most likely make the local press and that combined with any dates it would be easy to pinpoint; but in reality - it would be a fruitless search as I sincerely doubt it happened and I wouldn't ruin your false sense of anonymity either.

V--


Look, I'm not going to get into a pathetic argument with you - I'm merely saying your claims are dubious at best.I've discussed this with people off this thread and it seems to be generally accepted that a lot of the idiocy on here does make us look a laughing stock. I was semi-expecting someone who I'd highlighted in that rant come on to this thread and try and start a petty flame; but you're not going to get the reaction you wanted I'm afraid. I'll leave it as.

However, surprisingly you've kept this thread 100% on topic; you've just proven my point. This is exactly the type of immature bullshit that is stopping half the decent and respected members from coming back. They haven't gone anywhere. They're still on MSN, they haven't fallen off the face of the earth - they just don't like what this place has become.

I'm all for improvements and getting this place back to where it belongs, and where it started, but I'll reiterate a paragraph I said before..

Perhaps though, if we want to make this into something to be proud of - something active and exciting... perhaps we need to be honest with ourselves 110%, possibly make things worse by setting down some "bullshit detecting" measures and calling people out where necessarily (then dealing with them appropriately) and then building up from there?


Psy, please step back up and enforce those expectations again. To any old members reading - get back, get posting and get blunt. Secant is busy sorting out the website, and possibly a forum upgrade - and I refuse to see that wasted, this forum wasted and all the resources that have been put into it.

At the moment some people are posting dubious threads that seem to wreak of an elementary school creative writing lesson, whilst others are circle jerking to these stories. Yet you've got the same old people posting up resources, the same old people actually contributing anything of worth.

Yet astoundingly, it just happens.. there appears to be no response as we're all too scared that the forum will lose another member when we're running a bit low. Perhaps if we responded, perhaps if we got the standards back to where they were, and then got some of the old blood back in - we could nurture those that are serious as well as progressing collectively. However, until something happens we're not going to get back previous members.

There are new members here that post and actually give off good vibes. It's only fair to them too. The fact of the matter is, generally I pop in for a flying visit and disappear for a while; this time is different because I can see that there is a feeling here between some members - and the chat room has demonstrated this. There's an excitement for a new site, an eagerness to get new members and a curiousity that was always here... however, talking to members (both old and new) has also demonstrated that there's a tiredness and frustration also present. We need to combat that before we can reap the rewards.
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Psychlonic » Tue Jan 10, 2012 12:57 am

I would LOVE to see the days again where everyone was about personal improvement and progression, but let's not forget that we need to bring in new faces too and they're only going to be coming in with dreams of glory and not as much knowledge, so to speak. Again, we don't want to scare people away from looking like a tight-knit group opposed to outsiders. Tight-knit of course, but not Children of the Corn tight-knit. We also have to set a careful balance when doing that. Yes, rampant bullshit should be clamped down on but we also don't want to be too elitist and force people to fabricate even worse crap to "join the fraternity".

I look at RogueSci as a failure to meet this balance. The administration was too iron fisted and close-minded and let a lot of potential knowledgeable users slip through their grasp because of it. At the same time, they had a lot of completely incorrect information because they had banned the guys who would tell them it didn't work. Ideas not too long before the place closed down included shooting out motion sensors, using bubbles to block all signatures to the sensor, or even using gigantic plastic screws to bore holes through concrete...

(For those who don't know, shooting the sensor opens the circuit and using bubbles to block all signatures would change what the sensor sees - it takes into account existing heat signatures - and open the circuit, sounding the alarm. Thus endeth the tangent.)

Moddy, I know you've brought up a different form of elitism on some UE forums where if you don't have countless threads loaded with pictures to PROVE IT, you're not 1337 enough. I don't want this here, either. Maybe it's asking a bit much but guys, this isn't a race and it's not a dick measuring contest. It's about having fun on your own terms and realizing that nobody is perfect. Each of us takes something different from night ops than the others. When you come across as close-minded and perfect, it's easy to see through the bullshit and you look ridiculous. We don't care if you were in Delta Force, SAS, GSG-6, are an exclusive pupil to a rare ninjutsu lineage, etc. Honestly a lot of the higher guys are past that anyways so you won't be placed on a pedestal.

But even that "high tier" isn't perfect, hell I'm still learning something new everyday. I haven't been everywhere and done anything. We should be growing and learning together. If anyone is behind, SAY SOMETHING. A lot of us would love to help you out. Don't be ashamed about being behind. We have myths that continue to exist, like lock picking being super hard. Guys, we have members who can pick locks so fast it would make your head spin. Don't cheat yourself by acting like you're already an expert if you're not.

We're not going to laugh and ignore you if you ask for tips. We need this philosophy to be within everyone in the community if it's to succeed and move forward strong. Admittedly, I gave up on it and figured it would never happen. We'll see. We have members still in contact that have all the knowledge this place could ever need to be the definitive #1 site on the internet as far as infiltration and sneaky tricks go, that introduction I wrote in the Greetings forum isn't bullshit.

Until we have the right attitude though, none of that means a thing. If you're looking for a forum that is the best of all "generations", being high in knowledge, honest, and open to new users and different philosophies then all you need to do is just let the bullshit go and be yourself. This is that forum and we have those people. All those old guys come here every now and then and they look at what you are writing. New guys come in and they want to know what this place is all about.

"Be the change you wish to see in the world"

If enough people are in agreement to step towards that goal, I would be glad to help out however I can. Of course, Secant holds the ultimate decision here as this is his forum and honestly he's done a lot to keep this place alive and we all need to be appreciative of that as well.
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Illusion » Tue Jan 10, 2012 1:08 am

Psychlonic - I agree with everything you're saying. A clarification though, you've wrote a guide for the absolute beginner - and I wrote a much shorter one but one that I figured would provide a quick path in and get all the skills they would require - so it's clear neither of us want to cut new members out. In fact I say the opposite - we need to nurture them; but at the same time, we need to clear up the fact that there is some real obstacles to climb over (excuse the pun) at the moment.

I don't believe every thread should require a picture, I'm just saying we have a large amount of things that are.. well.. "dubious at best". Like the guy above..

We need to regulate some of the crap on here, and step the maturity up a notch - that's all I'm saying.

If anyone does say I'm elitist and want to get rid of newbies - go through my posts, go on the NONET website and read my guide.. and so on. If anyone says that generally I don't want to be reading through some rather subtle lies, not so subtle lies and getting paranoid over whats true and whats not - then yes, that is true.

I think the main thing that gets my goat to be frank, is some of the BI discussions. Thats the bulk of my problem. A stupid question (if there is such a thing) here and there can be dealt with easily and softly, by providing assistance. However, the volume of things that aren't only questionable quality, but questionable honesty - and especially in BI is astounding. Unfortunately, I don't want to be the only one to call people out and look like I'm asking for an argument, because I'm not - thats counter-productive to my overall goal; getting this forum back.

I'm also not suggesting to remove BI - that would be a Bad Idea in itself. I just think the "decent member":"kewl" ratio could do with adjusting!
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Psychlonic » Tue Jan 10, 2012 1:17 am

Right, and just to clarify on my end a lot of that was general statements about the forum status in general, not just towards you or anyone else in this thread. I see where you're coming from and like we talked about in chat, Biohazard is exactly the same. Teck-9 is like that as well, he'll call BS when he sees it. Some people look at that and think it's some guy looking to troll and start fights like you said, but... it needs to be said.

Perhaps clamping down harder on that sort of thing would make a statement that we don't stand for that shit here and work to not drive potential members away. Everyone is a lurker first, and they'll know what's going on before making their first post. No excuses.
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Illusion » Tue Jan 10, 2012 1:40 am

Psychlonic wrote:Right, and just to clarify on my end a lot of that was general statements about the forum status in general, not just towards you or anyone else in this thread. I see where you're coming from and like we talked about in chat, Biohazard is exactly the same. Teck-9 is like that as well, he'll call BS when he sees it. Some people look at that and think it's some guy looking to troll and start fights like you said, but... it needs to be said.

Perhaps clamping down harder on that sort of thing would make a statement that we don't stand for that shit here and work to not drive potential members away. Everyone is a lurker first, and they'll know what's going on before making their first post. No excuses.


haha, you've said exactly what I said in about a third of the words.. AND NO RED WRITING! :P

Yeah, Biohazard, Teck-9 et al are the ones I want - ones that have something to contribute, yet are prepared to state facts and call BS. Personally, my biggest problem is "I don't want to call bullshit in case I look like a shit stirring wanker"; hence why I've generally unleashed some anger and frustration in this thread, but kept it here.

I do think clamping down on it would be a massive way forward. Thats one action that will immediately drag the forum up - then some new discussions (happening all ready), some new guides (been spoken about, I have a few ideas), a new website (in the pipeline)... it's all looking up. It's just about hitting the main problem, which we've outlined above.

I fear that if Biohazard & Teck-9 came back, along with perhaps some moderation of those threads - the problem would be short lived.
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Ghost » Thu Jan 19, 2012 2:41 am

I've talked about this with a few members here already, but it seems worth posting here as well. In short, I looked at the failings of our current recruiting plan, made changes, and simplified things down into two basic ideas. Then i formulated a new recruiting plan based on those two parts. The ideas, and plan, are as follows:

1. Go where the people are. -

In order to successfully recruit, you need to appeal to the largest audience possible, within reason. Obviously this also needs to be an appropriate audience, as i doubt spamming night ops advertisements at Gaia Online would net us many followers... or anything at all, except unwanted attention.

2. When all else fails, go back to your roots. -

I understand the appeal to recruiting on UE sites - UEers are very similar to us. But most of those people are already ingrained in their ways, just like we are with ours. I have never joined a UE forum that was posted on here, so i'd have to imagine that most UEers are the same way. They're already doing what they want to be doing. So think back to our roots. The first night ops thread wasn't posted on a forum about UE, or parkour, or ninjutsu... It was posted on a forum about everything. And not just any forum, but the oldest and most respected forums on the internet, one of the largest online communities of its time, Totse.

The plan. -

Before you jump to conclusions, i am not suggesting we begin spamming all of the totse clones. Even the most active one is but a mere shadow of what Totse was, back in the day. We need to find a modern day equivalent to what Totse was... a site with a huge member base, where almost anything can be posted. A site where people don't mind if things posted aren't expressly legal. A site where free speech and creative, interesting content is encouraged.

Sound like any websites you know of? i'll keep going.

We need a website with many different forums, or boards if you will, for discussing different topics. Of course, a site on which we could post anonymously would be even better.

It seems to me that the OBVIOUS answer is 4chan. It's a modern day parallel to what Totse was back in it's prime. Sure, there's a lot of retarded stuff that goes on there, but was that not the same for Totse? We need to appeal to a large, young audience on a not-entirely mainstream website. The chans are a perfect opportunity to reach a huge number of people, and in turn give them the opportunity to discover night ops the same way some of us found it, way back in the beginning. Before the term "night ops" was even coined, when Infrared posted his original story about sneaking around in the night, there were tons of people who replied "Hey! i do that too!". Why would this be any different today? I have no doubts that there are plenty of people out there sneaking around, but without even realizing that there is a community dedicated to that very idea. I would also be willing to bet a large sum of money that a lot of them lurk/post on alternative websites. And let's face it - when talking about alternative websites, 4chan is certainly first among them in terms of membership. they get over 1 million unique viewers EVERY DAY.

Now, with those ideas firmly established, let me continue by saying that i DO NOT think we should simply spam advertisements there. The Night Ops tradition started with people sharing stories about their exploits, and finding common ground there. Lots of people enjoy going out at night and stealthily exploring. So like i said above - let's give them the opportunity to find night ops the same way i was privileged enough to find it - in a thread full of stories posted by people who did something i thought i was alone in doing.

It would be simple enough to organize a time for us to all get online, and head over to 4chan. Those of you who lurk there already know of certain boards who would be receptive to the idea... /x/, /k/, perhaps even /r9k/ and /b/ if we post at the right time. I've read stories about people sneaking around on ALL of those boards over the past few years. So why not bring the night ops tradition back the way it started? we'll all get on, and create a thread. Collectively we have tons of interesting stories here, so we share them, filling the thread with tales of our exploits, all unheard of on 4chan. Interested people would chime in, just as they did back on totse. we would hear comments like "i've been doing this for years, i just never had a name for it. i thought i was the only one who did stuff like this." just like we heard so many times in those first threads on Totse.

From there, weekly threads posted in receptive boards would continue to spark new interest in night ops. It would be a simple matter of dropping a link to our site here at the end of each of those threads, suggesting it to people who are interested but unsure how to start up, ect. The Night OPs tradition on Totse spawned enough interest to create this site and keep it going for years. Imagine how many members we might find by starting a new Night Ops tradition on 4chan. I'm sure there are many people there would look at those threads EXACTLY the same way we all once looked at a thread called "nighttime ops: new guy", posted back on Totse in 2003.
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Absent » Thu Jan 19, 2012 10:05 pm

Actually, I think that's a good idea. Check this thread out: http://4chanarchive.org/brchive/dspl_th ... 586702&x=f

I read that a while back and I'm pretty sure that's the first time I ever heard the term "night ops"... That's from 4chan's /r9k/ board. Unfortunately I'm banned from 4chan, but when I get the time I'll get my I.P changed.

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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Illusion » Sun Jan 22, 2012 11:55 pm

That post has given me more than a little confidence in the idea regarding 4chan; but all I would ask is that we carry out a few tasks first.

Firstly, the upgraded forum structure. Secondly, some higher standards for the forum - as have been discussed elsewhere; bullshit detecting etc.

Perhaps also an upgrade of the forum may be a good idea, without adding to Secant's schedule - this must be from 2007? I'm not sure how comfortable I am with bringing *lots* of potential users here when the software isn't too new; I haven't looked up vulnerability reports or exploits - but I assume there's a few gaps in the security here.
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Secant » Tue Jan 24, 2012 4:25 am

Sorry for the long absence, I've been out of town for the last two weeks.

Regarding advertising and drawing in new users:
Like I said before, I have no problem with forum members advertising NONET on other sites. Just be sure that it makes sense contextually! That 4chan thread would be a perfect place to drop a link, a mix of trolls and genuinely interested potential people would follow it. The trolls would (hopefully) get bored shortly after, but the interested ones might stay. You all know how addicting it can be to read about others' ops, and our archive of ops goes back quite a way.

The key to getting the interested visitors to stay will be allowing them to read about actual night ops, just like in the TOTSE threads. That's what drew me in all those years ago. I didn't care about gear or technique, I wanted to see how it's done! Then, following that, I wanted to do it myself, and gear and technique became important. It is the experience of seeing (even vicariously) what night ops are like that gets people interested. That's why I'm proposing that we open up the "Experiences" forum to public viewing. This would encourage visitors to stay for a little while, since they can read interesting stories about other users' ops. It would also discourage those who only register to see the Experiences forum from registering in the first place, but I see that as a positive since those who choose to actually register will probably have something real to say, and our ratio of quality posters will rise.

The issue with this proposal is that I don't know how comfortable the people who posted those op stories will be with public viewing. It would be bad policy to expose anyone who posted an op story with the understanding that it would not be publicly viewable. How do you all feel about this?

I'm also thinking of splitting the dare thread off into its own forum, since it has been successful so far. That might give dare posters a better incentive to write an interesting story around their op, in addition to the pictures.

Regarding drawing back old users:
If we want our old guard back, we need to increase the quality of the forum. Any community with more than one member will have at least one bullshitter, but that's really a symptom of a bigger problem. We don't do much to reward quality posts, and we don't do anything at all to discourage bullshit. There is an unspoken (and sometimes outspoken) regard for quality posters, and I used to think that was enough of a reward. But maybe not, since the group that the respect is meaningful to is so small. Also, reputation isn't visible to new members. We can't do this the simple way (by post count), either, since a spammer is not a quality poster. Maybe some kind of karma system? Or perhaps Zoklet's "It is so good to hear it" system could work? How can we discourage people from posting bullshit without being confrontational about it?

Or, maybe, some kind of policy like "exceptional claims require exceptional evidence", where a BSer could only get away with posting mundane stories (and therefore wouldn't get the attention they are looking for). This is all conjecture, though, I don't know what the right thing to do is any better than you all.

Regarding the forum upgrade
I don't like the idea of attempting to popularize the forum in its current state either. I would much prefer to finish the upgrade before starting with the recruiting. In fact, it will pretty much be required, since the existing site is such rubbish. But I do have a job - have to pay the bills somehow, eh? So, I am constrained to my free time, and even that is sparse enough. The most time-consuming part of the work that needs to be done is finishing the new forum theme. Is anyone who knows HTML/CSS willing to volunteer their time to help with it?

In terms of security, the site itself is too simple to be vulnerable to much. The forum software itself has been kept up to date. I have a whole bunch of plans to move the site to an encrypted, SSL-enabled VPS once the software upgrade is complete. But, I fear that is a long way off right now.

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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Illusion » Tue Jan 24, 2012 4:43 am

Secant wrote:Sorry for the long absence, I've been out of town for the last two weeks.

Regarding advertising and drawing in new users:
Like I said before, I have no problem with forum members advertising NONET on other sites. Just be sure that it makes sense contextually! That 4chan thread would be a perfect place to drop a link, a mix of trolls and genuinely interested potential people would follow it. The trolls would (hopefully) get bored shortly after, but the interested ones might stay. You all know how addicting it can be to read about others' ops, and our archive of ops goes back quite a way.

The key to getting the interested visitors to stay will be allowing them to read about actual night ops, just like in the TOTSE threads. That's what drew me in all those years ago. I didn't care about gear or technique, I wanted to see how it's done! Then, following that, I wanted to do it myself, and gear and technique became important. It is the experience of seeing (even vicariously) what night ops are like that gets people interested. That's why I'm proposing that we open up the "Experiences" forum to public viewing. This would encourage visitors to stay for a little while, since they can read interesting stories about other users' ops. It would also discourage those who only register to see the Experiences forum from registering in the first place, but I see that as a positive since those who choose to actually register will probably have something real to say, and our ratio of quality posters will rise.

The issue with this proposal is that I don't know how comfortable the people who posted those op stories will be with public viewing. It would be bad policy to expose anyone who posted an op story with the understanding that it would not be publicly viewable. How do you all feel about this?

I'm also thinking of splitting the dare thread off into its own forum, since it has been successful so far. That might give dare posters a better incentive to write an interesting story around their op, in addition to the pictures.


Regarding drawing back old users:
If we want our old guard back, we need to increase the quality of the forum. Any community with more than one member will have at least one bullshitter, but that's really a symptom of a bigger problem. We don't do much to reward quality posts, and we don't do anything at all to discourage bullshit. There is an unspoken (and sometimes outspoken) regard for quality posters, and I used to think that was enough of a reward. But maybe not, since the group that the respect is meaningful to is so small. Also, reputation isn't visible to new members. We can't do this the simple way (by post count), either, since a spammer is not a quality poster. Maybe some kind of karma system? Or perhaps Zoklet's "It is so good to hear it" system could work? How can we discourage people from posting bullshit without being confrontational about it?

Or, maybe, some kind of policy like "exceptional claims require exceptional evidence", where a BSer could only get away with posting mundane stories (and therefore wouldn't get the attention they are looking for). This is all conjecture, though, I don't know what the right thing to do is any better than you all.

Regarding the forum upgrade
I don't like the idea of attempting to popularize the forum in its current state either. I would much prefer to finish the upgrade before starting with the recruiting. In fact, it will pretty much be required, since the existing site is such rubbish. But I do have a job - have to pay the bills somehow, eh? So, I am constrained to my free time, and even that is sparse enough. The most time-consuming part of the work that needs to be done is finishing the new forum theme. Is anyone who knows HTML/CSS willing to volunteer their time to help with it?

In terms of security, the site itself is too simple to be vulnerable to much. The forum software itself has been kept up to date. I have a whole bunch of plans to move the site to an encrypted, SSL-enabled VPS once the software upgrade is complete. But, I fear that is a long way off right now.


How about giving the dare thread it's own forum then, and making -that- one public? No worries about public experiences, means the most active segment will also be the public one, additionally means that there is a big source of pictures for visitors to see!

Personally I think the karma system could be good, not only to stop levels of bullshit - but also to advance the posts as a whole. Furthermore, the whole "exceptional claims require exceptional evidence" could work perfectly well in the public eye, with the exception of Bad Ideas; in which the main source of the problem is. Psychlonic, Therin, Biohazard (!!!) and I have discussed it in chat and have figured a good way is to just call them out - simple.. Not the cleanest way, but so far there's been no drama.

I have discussed lending a hand before, and think I gave you my email addy too - will only be too glad to help further things along!
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Xanatos » Tue Jan 24, 2012 8:34 am

I'm in agreement with Secant here, although I think I prefer a more direct approach as Moddy suggested when it comes to calling people out on their bullshit. But in regards to the 'pics or it didn't happen' approach, what sort of evidence do we expect from them anyway? And what about (hypothetical) posts that're just proposing/planning an op, such as the Frisky Dingo one?

I wish I could help out with site development too, but I've got the programming skills of a pilchard.
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Absent » Tue Jan 24, 2012 10:01 am

Firstly, I've been messing about with creating, redesigning, and basically operating websites for quite some time now. I'd be willing to help out if you'd like. I'm decent enough at CSS/html and that sort of thing. Php is a bit of a weak point for me, but I manage well enough if I have to.

Also, to be perfectly honest, I'm not really worried about going down just because the forums are made public. If the authorities were really intent on busting us, they'd have no problems registering to see the content. I guess if they're public, search engines would be able to index the posts, but I'm really not worried about it. People shouldn't be posting things on here that are serious enough to warrant a full blown investigation that would actually have enough heat behind it to get a warrant and requrie that the hosting services turn over that users I.P, or whatever they might do. I say go for it.

As for the b.s'ing. I guess just generally getting everyone in the habit of snapping pics/taking quick videos/whatever on Ops to prove themselves is generally a good idea. Security wise, it could be a problem though. I wouldn't want someone to accidentally stumble upon a pic of their business/house/whatever being infiltrated. Eh, again, I'm not too worried about it though. A reputation system could definitely help. I've seen voting systems on other sites where people can vote a post up or vote it down... Kind of like facebook. I'm sure there's an addon for it.

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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Psychlonic » Tue Jan 24, 2012 8:14 pm

I'm going to categorize the best ideas I've heard so far in relation to overhauling the forum real fast, just to make them simple to see and understand.

- More appealing front page. We need to look fun, but also "professional", so to speak.

- Shorten the amount of forums to create the illusion of activity and make it easier to see newer posts. One version of this is to combine technique, assistance, and resources, leaving us with Experiences, Gear, Technique, and Mind & Body. My suggestion to this was to go even further and combine all of them except for Resources and Experiences, giving us something like Experiences, Training and Resources. Either way is an improvement.

- Reputation system. My big concern with this is that the forum becomes a giant circle jerk of dick measuring and using one's own reputation as a trump card during a debate. This could work with forum maturity, but it needs to be well thought out.

- Badge system. I'm starting to rethink my position on the "badges" proposal. They don't need to just be limited to dares, but they can also apply to more as well. Users would be allowed to add badges into their signature on their own with the rule that the badge must link to the operation where they earned it so people aren't just throwing badges on and there's no drama over the whole system.

- Clamp down on bullshit. This wouldn't just draw old users back in, but it would help prevent many new users from turning away. Simple as calling them out when it's really obvious, but again, with the caution of preventing it from becoming an e-dick contest.

- Revamp of Bad Ideas and moderator system to follow suit. I thought it would be a fun idea to "split" the forum between Bad Ideas and everything else. No global moderators anymore, moderators are either of Bad Ideas or for the rest of the website but cannot moderate BI. The idea would be to create a friendly, artificial rivalry between those who steal and those who don't on their night ops. This would allow us to clearly present a legit "sport" for the main purpose of the website with BI being "those other guys" that law abiding people are free to hate on without having to see spread across the rest of the forum. There could be some fun jabs in topics but it would be up to the moderators to cooperate and make sure no major flaming happens with one side attacking the other with seriousness. Since I've always been the thieving shitface of the older bunch anyways, I volunteer for the position of the BI moderator.
Last edited by Psychlonic on Fri Jan 27, 2012 5:55 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Illusion » Wed Jan 25, 2012 5:10 am

There are some phpBB reputation mods, one example is here. I think reputation is definitely the way forward, along with confronting bullshit when and where it happens.

One thing about that reputation mod is that you can edit a users ability to use the reputation system - i.e members with >x posts can use it. This would stop the whole "He gave me negative rep.. I'll just do it back." - which could make a mockery of both our attempts at cleaning the situation up, in addition to ruining the reputation system as a whole. (Psychlonic touches upon this issue, which is why it needs to be addressed sensitively - but I firmly think this could be the best idea to implement)

Xanatos does bring up the main issues with this - planning an op, and what evidence can we expect. Well - for planning an op; I think we just need to bear in mind..

a)This is a public forum, would someone of the mindset to commit such an action really post about it on such a forum?

b)If so, does someone with such an intellect have any realistic chance of conducting such an action? Do they appear to have any realistic qualities or skills which would allow them to conduct the action?

c)What have the previous contributions from this user been?

As for an actual experience that has been posted - this is tough, but it comes down to the above 3 questions again. Picking on an experience is easier though - you can generally tell when something doesn't sound right, then a bit of critical thinking can often lead to flaws in their supposed version of events.

I would mainly be concerned about search engine's indexing results; I think we need to make a decision ASAP - then allow people to remedy any situations that may arise from their lack of PERSEC; same usernames, email addresses etc.

When Psychlonic mentioned doing a forum overhaul that merged the forums even more dramatically I agreed. I think we need an incubation period so to speak, where we can go back to the foundations - even if it means we end up gaining activity and restoring the current layout. This not only casts an illusion of added activity; but also solves some of the forum overlaps.

I think Psy has underlined the primary issue of an ensuing circle jerk - be it through a reputation system, or a toughened policy on bullshit. We need to tread a very fine line, but one that is possible.

If you see bullshit - call it; but say why you think it's bullshit (unless it falls into the "glaringly obvious" category) - and leave it there. If an admin/mod wishes to take action, then do it swiftly; underline the reasons why and be done with it. After a day or two delete the thread to stop it looking like we get to many of them.

Reputation - have a general rough idea on what consitutes a legitimate use of rep. Ensure it's only used by members who are going to use it as such (limiting it to >x posts etc; but this may create a risk of people posting just to reach x...) and wipe the rep of those who abuse the system. No silly "Thanks for the rep, have some yourself! :)"; you get rep for making a valid contribution and have it taken away for the opposite..

As for the BI idea; I don't concern myself with BI - as when I do post there my head often hurts from the threads I see.. making it competitive could be incredibly good!
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Secant » Thu Jan 26, 2012 2:41 am

OK, so here's the "NONET Manifesto", a compilation of changes that seem to be generally agreed upon.

- Updated frontpage/site design is required and needs to be finished ASAP
- Condense forums according to one of two strategies:
1) Experiences, Gear, Technique, Mind & Body
2) Experiences, Training, Resources
- Reputation system to reward quality posters (careful with this one!)
- Badge system so people can show off a bit and be more engaged. Signatures will most likely be used.
- New policy: call out bullshitters. Don't be rude, just tell it like it is - be mature about it. Mods will play a large role in giving legitimacy to this stance in the minds of regular members. Eventually, an attitude of skepticism will prevail in the general population.
- No global moderators - "general" mods and "BI" mods. Neither may touch the other's domain.
- Corollary to the previous item: Psychlonic will be the first BI mod, and at least one general mod position will be opened.
- The Dare ops thread will become either a full-blown forum or a subforum of Experiences.
- Experiences and Dare threads will be made viewable to the public. New/popular ops will be linked to on the site's front page.
- Before Experiences is opened, users will be given a chance to remove their posts if they want to.
- Threads will be allowed to expire in all forums, to encourage fresh discussion of topics. An archive may be created for excellent threads.
- "Plugging" the forum on other sites is allowed where it is contextually appropriate.
- A mass email will be sent out once the revamped site and forum has been released. Moddy has given us the use of his host's mailserver - thanks!


Am I missing anything?

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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Illusion » Thu Jan 26, 2012 3:48 am

I think that's absolutely perfect.
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Xanatos » Thu Jan 26, 2012 8:57 am

Sounds good to me. I'll stick to the 'General' mod position, but will inform Psych & others if I spot anything that needs fixing in BI.
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Ghost » Sat Jan 28, 2012 1:05 am

Looks excellent. The only thing i think we could improve upon would be the way in which we condense the forums, which is a relatively minor issue. I've been putting a fair amount of thought into it, and i'd like to suggest this as a possible forum layout:

Code: Select all
Night Ops
--------------------
Experiences (with a dare ops subforum)
Gear
"skills" (a combination of Technique, Assistance, and Mind and Body. needs better name.)

General
--------------------
Discussion
Bad Ideas
Greetings

Forum Management
--------------------
Announcements and Suggestions
Links


I think the main thing to keep in mind when combining forums is that we should do it in the most logical way possible. I tried to combine things based both on similar content and number of posts; when you look at the Gear forum, it has almost as many posts as Technique, Assistance, and Mind and Body combined. Since it's one of our more active forums, it can probably stand alone. Those other three all deal with different aspects of the same thing - the practice and mastery of certain skills.

Announcements and Suggestions both naturally get a small number of posts, and likewise deal with similar stuff, forum issues. Instead of having a separate section for Links, why not condense them into a single "forum" instead of three, and group them down with forum management stuff.

It's just a rough idea, but it's neat, clean, and logical. thoughts?
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Secant » Sat Jan 28, 2012 2:37 am

Therin, I like it. I think we could definitely move forward with that arrangement. However, I am against merging Announcements and Suggestions - Announcements is supposed to be pretty much read-only, but participation is encouraged in Suggestions. It's all peripheral to night opping anyway, so it doen't matter if they don't appear to get very much traffic. Does anyone else have another counterproposal, or anything else to discuss regarding the merging? There may be a case for merging Gear into the "skills" forum along with the other smaller forums.

What about "Preparation" for the Technique/Assistance/M&B merged forum? Boring, but practical - just a starting point. Can anyone think of a more imaginative name than "Skills" or "Preparation"?

Also, we won't need to keep the links section around after the site redesign is finished. All of those links will appear at the top of the page no matter where you are in the site.

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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Ghost » Sat Jan 28, 2012 12:38 pm

That makes sense with Announcements and Suggestions. The only reason i would argue against moving gear in with another forum is because it's usually pretty active by itself, and ideally all of the forums in that section will get equal amounts of posting/traffic. I suppose we could just call the "skills" forum Techniques, or perhaps "Techniques and Assistance", or even "Training and Techniques. Essentially just something to let people figure out Experiences = what we do, "skills" = how we do it, and gear = what we do it with. I'd certainly take Preparation over Skills, though, as "skills" was really only meant as a concept name.

I'm definitely a fan of the links appearing at the top of the page, especially a link to the chat up there. Any idea on what the main page layout will end up looking like? Just out of curiosity.
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Secant » Mon Jan 30, 2012 5:38 am

OK, so that's one vote for a separate Gear forum. Anyone else agree or disagree?

Also, we still need name suggestions for the other merged forum. So far, the candidates are:
Skills
Preparation
Techniques and Assistance
Training and Techniques

None of them are especially catchy. Please suggest more!

I'll upload an example screenshot of what the forum update looks like now with this post.
Attachments
2012-01-29-232747_1920x1200_scrot.png
An example of the new site and forum style. Taken 2012-01-29.

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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Xanatos » Mon Jan 30, 2012 10:38 am

How about just 'Gear, Body and Mind'? Encompasses everything that needs to be dealt with.
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Psychlonic » Mon Jan 30, 2012 7:42 pm

We could always go for more elaborate names as well besides our current bare bones field manual style ones. I'm not even necessarily agreeing with my own idea here but it's an option. For example:

Myths from the Shadows - Share stories of your exploits with fellow operatives.
Operative's Gear - Equipment needed to get the job done.
Art of Night Ops - Exchange skills required to succeed.

Also, couple of things. One, I'm going to be really busy for the next month. I'm juggling my normal job, a couple odd jobs, some personal small business pursuits, and I'm going to be moving in a week. Whenever we get to a point where I can contribute something I'll do what I can but not at the capacity I'd normally be able to. Second, not much has happened over the last month aside from some ideas, work behind the scenes, and a couple old guys coming back. I'm wanting to hold back on recruiting personally or contacting old members until something noticeable changes. Right now, I think pulling in new members would hurt because as is the forum would turn them away and we'd exhaust potential pools needlessly. Plus, despite promise and showing that we intend to move in a positive direction, a lot of old members are still not biting. This has been a concern for me since the beginning and is why while I'm all for cleaning up a lot, we shouldn't cater to oldies while alienating new members. The old crowd is, to be brutally honest, a bunch of flakes.
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Illusion » Tue Jan 31, 2012 2:30 am

Psychlonic wrote:We could always go for more elaborate names as well besides our current bare bones field manual style ones. I'm not even necessarily agreeing with my own idea here but it's an option. For example:

Myths from the Shadows - Share stories of your exploits with fellow operatives.
Operative's Gear - Equipment needed to get the job done.
Art of Night Ops - Exchange skills required to succeed.

Also, couple of things. One, I'm going to be really busy for the next month. I'm juggling my normal job, a couple odd jobs, some personal small business pursuits, and I'm going to be moving in a week. Whenever we get to a point where I can contribute something I'll do what I can but not at the capacity I'd normally be able to. Second, not much has happened over the last month aside from some ideas, work behind the scenes, and a couple old guys coming back. I'm wanting to hold back on recruiting personally or contacting old members until something noticeable changes. Right now, I think pulling in new members would hurt because as is the forum would turn them away and we'd exhaust potential pools needlessly. Plus, despite promise and showing that we intend to move in a positive direction, a lot of old members are still not biting. This has been a concern for me since the beginning and is why while I'm all for cleaning up a lot, we shouldn't cater to oldies while alienating new members. The old crowd is, to be brutally honest, a bunch of flakes.


Agreed. I think all the improvements are our top priority right now. Also, regarding catering to oldies - I think we should strive to have new blood with old attitudes; not necessarily the same people - but similar ones with similar views.

We perhaps do romanticise the old bunch (I'm guilty more than anyone) to a degree, essentially there was just a community spirit with a huge reduction of bullshit; things that any group can do. I've just seen someone in chat who is brand new, yet is one of the most sensible members I've seen on here - the same goes for 1 or 2 others in the forum. There are good quality members with potential coming through, it's about nurturing those members and ensuring that they have a reason to stay; i.e easy access to the relevant knowledge, a friendly community and somewhere to share tips. We have those 3 things: we just have a few others that need adjusting.
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Secant » Wed Feb 01, 2012 4:27 am

Add this one to the manifesto:

Thread archival: exceptional threads will be archived by converting the information they contain into the form of an informational PDF which can be put in the Resources section.


The rationale for this is that any thread which cannot be easily converted to an informational PDF guide is probably discussion, and should end up being pruned eventually so as to encourage new discussion. An archived discussion thread discourages active participation, so for that reason no Archive forum will be present in the new layout. Nobody used the last one, anyway.

I would also propose a change to the Manifesto: global mods remain globally-capable, but have standing orders not to touch BI unless a BI mod is not available. This in is case of spammers and things of that nature.

I rather like Psychlonic's names, do we want to use something more evocative rather than descriptive?

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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Secant » Wed Feb 01, 2012 5:04 am

For clarity's sake, here is an updated Manifesto:

Code: Select all
- Updated frontpage/site design is required and needs to be finished ASAP
- Condense forums so that three main night ops forums exist (their names may change):
    - Experiences (with Dare Ops subforum)
    - Gear
    - Technique
- Reputation system to reward quality posters (careful with this one!)
- Badge system so people can show off a bit and be more engaged. Signatures will most likely be used.
- New policy: call out bullshitters. Don't be rude, just tell it like it is - be mature about it. Mods will play a large role in giving legitimacy to this stance in the minds of regular members. Eventually, an attitude of skepticism will prevail in the general population.
- Specialized "Bad Ideas" mod class opened. These moderators are responsible for the Bad Ideas forum only.
    - Global moderators have standing orders not to touch BI unless a BI mod is not available (e.g. in case of a spam attack).
    - Psychlonic will be the first BI mod, Moddy will be a new general mod.
- Experiences and Dare threads will be made viewable to the public. New/popular ops will be linked to on the site's front page.
    - Before Experiences is opened, users will be given a chance to remove their posts if they want to.
- Threads will NOT be pruned from any forum. However, linking to these threads instead of actually discussing a topic will be discouraged.
- Thread archival: exceptional threads will be archived by converting the information they contain into the form of an informational PDF which can be put in the Resources section. Threads will not be archived.
- "Plugging" the forum on other sites is allowed where it is contextually appropriate.
- A mass email will be sent out once the revamped site and forum has been released. Moddy has given us the use of his host's mailserver - thanks!

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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Illusion » Mon Feb 13, 2012 2:28 pm

I'd just like to make a few observations regarding this topi, a week or two later... We appear to be recovering somewhat!

The last few nights chat has averaged at about 6 members for a really lively discussion - Awesome.
Discussion has increased a bit - although primarily in the Gear forum, and some more Dare Ops.. Progress!

Also, the forum changes are really beginning to take pace - with a new forum structure already, and other things taking shape. Pretty exciting, huh? :D
"I'm not worried about this because I am too strong, too good, too intelligent, but I want to say to the others 'don't follow the stupid'."

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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Xanatos » Mon Feb 13, 2012 2:59 pm

Indeed, can't wait to see some more ops happening around the world.

If things go south we can always revert back to my 'free hookers' proposal. :lol:
We are all books containing thousands of pages and within each lies an irreparable truth.
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Re: Time to Consider Recruiting Options

Postby Ghost » Tue Feb 14, 2012 11:19 pm

Xanatos wrote:If things go south we can always revert back to my 'free hookers' proposal. :lol:


Wait... so you mean that they are currently not free?

Shit.
"A man's greatest treasures are his illusions."

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