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Requests for Comments (RFC)
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Thread: Requests for Comments (RFC)

  1. #1
    Administrator Advisor peter's Avatar
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    Requests for Comments (RFC)

    Based on the suggestions of the msforums.org thread. I have given the RFC proposal a lot of thought and would like to propose the following:

    Requirement:

    To create a Request for Comment (RFC) process so that the entire membership can become more active in influencing the direction of the forums.

    Proposal:

    There are a number of components:

    RFC proposals

    1. Any member can request a change to the forums in the form of an RFC thread.
    2. The RFC must have a poll.
    3. The poll should be in the form of a question and the only two options should be:
      • Yes - This is a major point, the entire forum should be informed of a formal vote
      • No - This is a minor point. A formal vote is unnecessary. The administrator's decision is sufficient.
    4. Voting will be open for only 2 weeks.
    5. The RFC poll question must be submitted to the administrator in the form of a Private Message. This is so that the wording can be refined prior to release.
    6. The administrator will post the RFCs, to ensure he/she is aware of the motion and that the two week limit is enforced.
    7. Formal RFC voting will be initiated when there is a majority "yes" vote and over 50 members (a quorum) have voted. This will help to ensure that the RFCs have a following by a broad based portion of the membership.
    8. RFCs proposed by the administrator that fail to meet the quorum numbers will be implemented by default. This is will be assumed to be an indication of the RFC being a minor point.
    9. RFCs proposed by members that fail to meet the quorum numbers will result in the status quo being maintained. In other words, a minor point.
    10. Unsuccessful RFC submissions can be resubmitted only after a 6 month hiatus.


    Formal RFC Voting

    1. Formal voting on RFCs will take place monthly if qualifying RFCs exist.
    2. All members will be eligible to vote
    3. The formal RFC will be posted on the forums for voting on a monthly basis.
    4. Voting will be open for 2 weeks.


    Administrator's Role

    The administrator has RFC veto powers on implementing all recommendations related to:

    1. Breaching the forum guidelines;
    2. Features that would be detrimental to the stability of the forum's software applications;
    3. The forum's marketing promotions;
    4. Changes that would jeopardize the vitality of the forums.



    Question:

    There is one question I was wondering about:

    1. Should emails be sent to alert the membership to the voting?


    This should be a good starting point for discussion.

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  2. #2
    Senior Member RickDev's Avatar
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    Yes, I believe an email noticed should be sent to allow members to know that a vote that effects the forum is going on. This will make sure that all voices that want to be heard are heard.

    I would also make sure that it is stated very clearly in each vote what the yes and no are defined as. That way there is not any confusing on people voting no, thinking that they are voting not to have the change put into effect when really they could be voting that it is a minor point.

    On votes that are minor points, I would propose that the forum staff (moderators and admins) discuss the change in a private forum to allow one more chance for the change to be bounced around before taking place. That way if the 50 member quota is not reached it can still be discussed by members you have entrusted with moderator and admin rights to give their final opinion on. I think the same should work is something is in the veto stage. Again, this is just my thoughts.
    RickDev
    "Nobody knows what I do until I stop doing it."


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  3. #3
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    To answer you, yes. Emails probably are a good idea.

    One question: What do you mean by "The forum's marketing promotions"?

    If you mean that you would reject an RFC on "Ban all the Google AdSense ads", then I would agree. You need to pay the billsof the site. But if it is not, please enlighten.

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  4. #4
    Administrator Advisor peter's Avatar
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    Yes Schotty, it was to ensure that I can pay the bills. Other things could come up, like sharing a small booth at LinuxWorld San Francisco, where I live; or making small donations to varying OpenSource projects.

    RickDev, do you have experience with moderator forums? I was concerned that they could be viewed with suspicion by the broader community. I could see how it could be useful in this scenario, the RFC should be presented to the broader community once it has been tuned, if not, broader discussion could start prematurely and influence the vote.

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  5. #5
    Senior Member RickDev's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by peter View Post
    RickDev, do you have experience with moderator forums? I was concerned that they could be viewed with suspicion by the broader community. I could see how it could be useful in this scenario, the RFC should be presented to the broader community once it has been tuned, if not, broader discussion could start prematurely and influence the vote.

    I don't think it is seen as suspicious, I know I have never seen a staff area as such as a member of a forum. It makes it easier for the moderators and admins to talk about changes, or like you said, fine tune them before presenting them out to the membership for their vote. More eyes on it before it is suggested might catch things that might have been viewed negatively to the membership. As long as it is not a closed door meeting where all changes are being made without a public vote, I don't see harm in it.
    RickDev
    "Nobody knows what I do until I stop doing it."


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  6. #6
    When do you plan to start doing this?

  7. #7
    Administrator Advisor peter's Avatar
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    I'll wait for another week till I get further comments. I'm also investigating how to do a private moderator forum.

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  8. #8
    Moderator
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    Quote Originally Posted by peter View Post
    I'll wait for another week till I get further comments. I'm also investigating how to do a private moderator forum.
    I am not sure what is needed (been a long long time since I actually ran a forum rather than moderated), but the Linspire folks do this at this time. The system builders and moderators each have their own forums.

    And with regards to this same topic, the Alliance I am part of in EVE Online, the leading corps forum is set so that public/unauthorized viewers cannot see the alliance business. I would presume that this is what Linspire is doing and what has been requested here.

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  9. #9
    Administrator Advisor peter's Avatar
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    Thanks everyone. I have created the moderator private forum.

    I guess for this to work, all moderators will have to be notified of updates to the moderator forum. What do you think?
    Last edited by peter; 01-18-2007 at 06:51 AM.

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  10. #10
    Senior Member RickDev's Avatar
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    To me the moderators should try and check the forum at least once a week to see if there are any issues. But I am sure you can setup the software to email the group on new topics or something.
    RickDev
    "Nobody knows what I do until I stop doing it."


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