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August 2001 - June 2017

The School Survival Forums are permanently retired. If you need help with quitting school, unsupportive parents or anything else, there is a list of resources on the Help Page.

To everyone who joined these forums at some point, and got discouraged by the negativity and left after a while (or even got literally scared off): I'm sorry.

I wasn't good enough at encouraging people to be kinder, and removing people who refuse to be kind. Encouraging people is hard, and removing people creates conflict, and I hate conflict... so that's why I wasn't better at it.

I was a very, very sensitive teen. The atmosphere of this forum as it is now, if it had existed in 1996, would probably have upset me far more than it would have helped.

I can handle quite a lot of negativity and even abuse now, but that isn't the point. I want to help people. I want to help the people who need it the most, and I want to help people like the 1996 version of me.

I'm still figuring out the best way to do that, but as it is now, these forums are doing more harm than good, and I can't keep running them.

Thank you to the few people who have tried to understand my point of view so far. I really, really appreciate you guys. You are beautiful people.

Everyone else: If after everything I've said so far, you still don't understand my motivations, I think it's unlikely that you will. We're just too different. Maybe someday in the future it might make sense, but until then, there's no point in arguing about it. I don't have the time or the energy for arguing anymore. I will focus my time and energy on people who support me, and those who need help.

-SoulRiser

The forums are mostly read-only and are in a maintenance/testing phase, before being permanently archived. Please use this time to get the contact details of people you'd like to keep in touch with. Send me a message if you'd like to keep in touch with me & Steve.

Please do not make a mirror copy of the forums in their current state - things will still change, and some people have requested to be able to edit or delete some of their personal info.


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School Survival's Future - Discussion Thread
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Ky Offline
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Post: #1
School Survival's Future - Discussion Thread

Greetings, readers, visitors, and users of School Survival.

We're not like other forums. Not by a long shot. We're a place where people of any gender, race, religion, sexuality, and age can curse, chat, and constructively criticize to their hearts' content, and a forum dedicated to supporting those who can't find help anywhere else.

There are some who disagree, for one reason or another.

Some blame the "edgy" users for corrupting School Survival so that we can't be supportive anymore. They insist that we've been infiltrated by sadistic malcontents, and believe that the forums are devolving into low-effort, low-quality posts because of this corruption. They are fearful for our future reputation and all we stand for.

Other users take offense to this, and insist that they are adhering not only to the forum's guidelines, but also to its spirit of free speech. They believe that those who have taken offense to them are too uptight and are violating what these forums stand for, and some believe that the moderators were poorly chosen. They are fearful for our past reputation, and of the means by which we are achieving our ends.

I can't say either side is right. We should promote support, but not at the expense of the people we call "edgy". We should speak our minds freely, but not to insult others or scare potential users away.

We need middle ground, mediation - that is why I'm calling a meeting that everyone is invited to. Please, discuss the following:

Some have said that older users can get away with things newer users can't - that moderators are faster to warn/ban new people for perceived slights while established users get off scott-free. How should this be handled?

By the same token, many established users are no longer contributing to discussions and, indeed, are taking more time to create low-effort, low-quality posts, some of which are even outside The Basement. What should be done about this?

How can we improve our reputation and help more people without sacrificing the freedoms our forums stand for? How can we ensure that people aren't targeted for "saying the wrong thing" about others without defeating the purpose of a support forum?

These are not easy questions to ask, and I don't think the answers will be any easier. There is one thing I want you all to keep in mind: We're a team. We're not equals in every sense, and we're certainly a motley crew of unlike individuals, but we do bring out quite a bit in each other. I, personally, just want that bit to be nothing short of the best, and think that this discussion might help us all come to an understanding.

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06-28-2014 09:18 AM
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brainiac3397 Offline
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Post: #2
School Survival's Future - Discussion Thread

Adding a cool-off post time before making another post doth not help.

Seriously. I'm not liking it. I hope it's temporary cause it's making me RRRAAAGGGEEE!

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06-28-2014 11:22 AM
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zerostyle Offline
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School Survival's Future - Discussion Thread

I know im new but I have some advice:

make a better system of warnings. like standardized and has appeals.
dont tolerate these trolls posting sick pornography
get rid of the random forum its too crazy
allow criticism of the weak minded because it doesnt help them to be babied
06-28-2014 11:26 AM
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Gwedin Offline
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Post: #4
School Survival's Future - Discussion Thread

(06-28-2014 11:26 AM)zerostyle Wrote:  I know im new but I have some advice:

make a better system of warnings. like standardized and has appeals.

+1

(06-28-2014 11:26 AM)zerostyle Wrote:  I know im new but I have some advice:

dont tolerate these trolls posting sick pornography

Kinda hard considering VPNs and proxies and shit. :|

(06-28-2014 11:26 AM)zerostyle Wrote:  I know im new but I have some advice:

get rid of the random forum its too crazy

Leave the Basement if you don't like it. It's called Random for a reason. :3

(06-28-2014 11:26 AM)zerostyle Wrote:  I know im new but I have some advice:

allow criticism of the weak minded because it doesnt help them to be babied

Weak minded?

EDIT: Will maybe possibly post own suggestions later.
(This post was last modified: 06-28-2014 11:33 AM by Gwedin.)
06-28-2014 11:32 AM
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Ky Offline
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Post: #5
School Survival's Future - Discussion Thread

It's not a cooldown, brainy - if you double-post, the forum merges your second post into your first and adds an annoying line break. I hate that feature.

Zero, you bring up a number of good points. Here's my personal plans on this matter:
- Standardizing the warning system is a must. I've just convinced the other mods to use it more often, and we'll eventually be able to gauge exactly how we should handle posts that break our guidelines.
- That's only one troll - his original username was Duelix. He's ban-on-sight, but sometimes we can't see him fast enough. In any case, he doesn't have a shadow of a hope for an appeal of any kind, so he won't be bothering you for very long before we make him disappear.
- I'm worried about what some of the users here will do if we take away their last refuge for low-quality posts.
- Constructive criticism is allowed (and, in the case of some people, encouraged), but please keep it constructive. These forums don't run on insults.

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06-28-2014 11:34 AM
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zerostyle Offline
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RE: School Survival's Future - Discussion Thread

Quote:
(06-28-2014 11:26 AM)zerostyle Wrote:  I know im new but I have some advice:

allow criticism of the weak minded because it doesnt help them to be babied

Weak minded?
impresionable people with obvious delusions.
06-28-2014 11:37 AM
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Ky Offline
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Post: #7
School Survival's Future - Discussion Thread

Wait, there is a cooldown for some users. That doesn't help - I once left a forum just because they had one!

Public Service Announcement: First world problems are still problems.
06-28-2014 11:37 AM
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Chanku Offline
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Post: #8
School Survival's Future - Discussion Thread

(06-28-2014 11:26 AM)zerostyle Wrote:  make a better system of warnings. like standardized and has appeals.
It's up to soul on that one. I don't think we should standardize it to have appeals, but that's my opinion
Quote:dont tolerate these trolls posting sick pornography
We only have one of those, and as has been explained he always returns
Quote:get rid of the random forum its too crazy
Just leave the Basement group then
Quote:allow criticism of the weak minded because it doesnt help them to be babied
We allow constructive criticism, keyword CONSTRUCTIVE. Also keep in mind that we are SUPPORT FORUM.

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06-28-2014 11:45 AM
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Post: #9
RE: School Survival's Future - Discussion Thread

(06-28-2014 11:26 AM)zerostyle Wrote:  I know im new but I have some advice:

make a better system of warnings. like standardized and has appeals.
dont tolerate these trolls posting sick pornography
get rid of the random forum its too crazy
allow criticism of the weak minded because it doesnt help them to be babied

1. Yes.
2. He always has a new proxy.
3. No.
4. Yes, I agree because I'm starting to feel most of the oldfafs that got banned (well, all of them except Potato) really didn't deserve it. It doesn't help them.

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06-28-2014 12:06 PM
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Chanku Offline
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School Survival's Future - Discussion Thread

Also I state that the reason we shouldn't have appeals is because we only have 5 people working on the moderation team(Including SoulRiser), we don't have the resources at the moment.

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06-28-2014 12:25 PM
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Sharpie Offline
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Post: #11
School Survival's Future - Discussion Thread

how difficult is it to moderate a forum and irc lol 5 people is quite enough, provided at least one of them is on at all times. If that isn't the case then make it the case.
06-28-2014 12:32 PM
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Chanku Offline
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School Survival's Future - Discussion Thread

Keep in mind only about 2 people actually overlap with IRC moderation and not all Forum Mods are online in fact me and DoA are online a lot followed by xcrit and night(I'm not sure about SoulRiser though) and this is just my perception

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06-28-2014 12:34 PM
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Sharpie Offline
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School Survival's Future - Discussion Thread

Well, then something clearly needs to be done about that: more mods, specifically ones that stay up late. No, i'm not referring to myself. Neue is a perfect fit, is trustworthy, and is more than capable.
(This post was last modified: 06-28-2014 12:48 PM by Sharpie.)
06-28-2014 12:47 PM
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thewake Offline
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School Survival's Future - Discussion Thread

/ss/ is obviously attempting to revert back to its former personality. This was inevitable. The forum already had an established culture and norms of almost unlimited free speech for years. I've been here 7 years and the new so-called "hugbox" has been around for 2 years max, and has only been in full "hugbox" mode for part of that time. You're not going to fundamentally change the nature of this forum unless a lot more is done.

And it's about fundamentally changing the community here, isn't it? Let's not pretend it's not. Go take a look at old threads, the forums used to very much "run on insults." The kind of behavior that used to dominate these forums is now largely frowned upon and punished. Soul was obviously disgusted by the culture here and has attempted to change it for a long time, but you don't accomplish that with these half-measures. Go take a look at how most forums are run. They don't tolerate stuff they don't want in their midst.

The middle ground is conflict. People who used to be prominent members with thousands of posts have been banned because they behaved exactly how they had always behaved. But now it's against the rules. Some of the mods are more recent users, and honestly their inexperience has left them largely ineffective. Don't think that doesn't cause conflict or resentment? There's a reason seniority is an important factor in considering promotions in large organizations. Aside from the obvious problem of trolls, the main source of conflict is the generation gap. That's the problem. /ss/ has had generational divides before but never like this. This is categorically different.

You all are obviously trying to change the forums, so actually do it. No more half measures. This forum is as full of trolls as ever so the current rules obviously aren't enough. Oh free speech, but oh constructive criticism. Oh old members, but oh new members' feelings. Do something. Crack down on the errant behavior. Delete all the ancient posts. Stop with the half measures.

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06-28-2014 01:21 PM
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brainiac3397 Offline
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Post: #15
School Survival's Future - Discussion Thread

Did Soul give any announcement about this post cool off thing? I'm curious...

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06-28-2014 01:31 PM
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Efs Offline
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Post: #16
School Survival's Future - Discussion Thread

I vote for a mutiny.
The Glorious King Efs is clearly the only suitable person for the job.
It's time to end the feeble leadership that currently stands. If you people want glory, then I will lead you to glory.

(01-10-2012 02:15 PM)Maelstrom Wrote:  Efs, your nihilism is beautiful.
06-28-2014 03:37 PM
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SwiftEscudo Offline
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RE: School Survival's Future - Discussion Thread

(06-28-2014 01:21 PM)W Kuts Wrote:  /ss/ is obviously attempting to revert back to its former personality. This was inevitable. The forum already had an established culture and norms of almost unlimited free speech for years. I've been here 7 years and the new so-called "hugbox" has been around for 2 years max, and has only been in full "hugbox" mode for part of that time. You're not going to fundamentally change the nature of this forum unless a lot more is done.

And it's about fundamentally changing the community here, isn't it? Let's not pretend it's not. Go take a look at old threads, the forums used to very much "run on insults." The kind of behavior that used to dominate these forums is now largely frowned upon and punished. Soul was obviously disgusted by the culture here and has attempted to change it for a long time, but you don't accomplish that with these half-measures. Go take a look at how most forums are run. They don't tolerate stuff they don't want in their midst.

The middle ground is conflict. People who used to be prominent members with thousands of posts have been banned because they behaved exactly how they had always behaved. But now it's against the rules. Some of the mods are more recent users, and honestly their inexperience has left them largely ineffective. Don't think that doesn't cause conflict or resentment? There's a reason seniority is an important factor in considering promotions in large organizations. Aside from the obvious problem of trolls, the main source of conflict is the generation gap. That's the problem. /ss/ has had generational divides before but never like this. This is categorically different.

You all are obviously trying to change the forums, so actually do it. No more half measures. This forum is as full of trolls as ever so the current rules obviously aren't enough. Oh free speech, but oh constructive criticism. Oh old members, but oh new members' feelings. Do something. Crack down on the errant behavior. Delete all the ancient posts. Stop with the half measures.

I agree. Most of the new SSers and Soul want this website to be something different and have for a long time.

Change things. Yes, we'll be critical. I'd even expect some of the newer people to respond negatively. If it's the change that Soul, the mods and many of the post-DnE users want, then it's the change to be done.

Most of the oldfags have either left these forums behind or are expecting to at some point, this isn't 'our' place any more. Make it yours, you're gonna have to bring on some big changes to do that but it's better than awkwardly compromising or trying to find a middle ground.

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06-28-2014 08:26 PM
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Post: #18
School Survival's Future - Discussion Thread

I want SS to go back to how it was in 2006-2007, with that kind of atmosphere. We have the right people for it now, but also some of the wrong ones. Easiest "solution" is just get rid of the wrong ones... but I don't like that. They also deserve our support... and maybe they can change. It's happened before.

We can keep them in the basement until they learn how to post better? Not that the basement is a wonderful place or anything... maybe we need a new 'learning how to post' section in there... or something. Shrug

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06-28-2014 09:20 PM
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RE: School Survival's Future - Discussion Thread

(06-28-2014 09:20 PM)SoulRiser Wrote:  I want SS to go back to how it was in 2006-2007, with that kind of atmosphere. We have the right people for it now, but also some of the wrong ones. Easiest "solution" is just get rid of the wrong ones... but I don't like that. They also deserve our support... and maybe they can change. It's happened before.

We can keep them in the basement until they learn how to post better? Not that the basement is a wonderful place or anything... maybe we need a new 'learning how to post' section in there... or something. Shrug

The basement should just go. It's a messy hive of crap and always has been, utterly pointless and non-constructive. And certainly not something that should stay if SS is to move towards what I think you guys want it to be.

In place of dwelling, people could receive temporary bans.

I also think it's important to discuss the end goal along with the means. As Trotsky said, "The end may justify the means as long as there is something that justifies the end."

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06-28-2014 09:29 PM
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Ky Offline
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Post: #20
School Survival's Future - Discussion Thread

I appreciate the advice, W Kuts and SwiftEscudo, but I believe we have more alternatives than the extreme plan you've laid out.

First of all, the established culture is compatible with the present culture; we know this because of users like xcriteria and NiteRaidah, just to name a couple. For every older user who detests the concept of a hugbox, there is another who is at least willing to give it a chance. I believe that many of these users can be encouraged to participate in constructive discussions without sacrificing their autonomy or personalities; we don't run like our enemies, the schools, do.

Second of all, the community has already changed. Yes, a reversion is possible considering the poor example many of the older users have set, but I believe that there are more still who are capable of creating a positive atmosphere here. This change is neither innately negative nor positive; it's the progression of time, and I'm counting on the users who are new today to set a good example for the new users of the future. Perhaps School Survival will not always be a "hugbox", but I hope it does not return to its former status as the battlefield on which flame wars take place.

Thirdly, tolerance is an important tool, but it can only be handled with proper discernment. Some of us lack this discernment, it's true - we put up with users who may truly be stuck in their ways and unwilling to accept change. Our ability to put up with people who may never get accustomed to settling things in a non-destructive manner is not a weakness on our part, but a strength; while it may have been in Duelix's, Potato's, or Aya's best interests not to suffer fools lightly, that's not a sign of strength, and it's not who we are anymore. Believe me, we're doing our best to determine whether there is hope for many of the individual users here, new and old - forgive me if I'm extremely uncomfortable with judging people as though I'm giving them a grade.

Another point I'd like to bring up is that of seniority - you say seniority, but all I hear is tenure. Perhaps Sharpie is right; perhaps we are quicker to blame newer users for ignoring our guidelines than we are to accuse established users of breaking the rules. I can think of at least three such users that deserve punishment for "behaving as they always have" that very few others would have considered. To act against them now would be foolish, considering I should have done something about it long ago.

This website is both different and the same - our focus, as ever, is to help people survive school. School is our common enemy, and that's not our only one. The generations of SS have a lot in common; the newer folks are trying to do their part to preserve the best aspects of historic SS culture, but we only ask in turn that the older folks accept the changes we have in mind, and perhaps guide us in making those changes. We are determined to move these forums forward, but we don't want to do so without first turning back and building at least one bridge over this generation gap. Just because some of the "oldfafs" give us trouble doesn't mean we necessarily have to leave them behind.

2006 and 2007 aren't coming back. This doesn't mean the past doesn't stand for anything - for many older users, this can and should be their place. Yeah, so we've done some remodeling; this doesn't mean we're kicking the old tenants out (unless, of course, they resort to property damage).

I've considered convincing Soul to get rid of the Basement, but it's the septic tank of SS; regular people can't see it, I'd prefer to keep our crap in there rather than on our floors, and it gives a lot of us a form of relief.

What might be most important to address, however, is our end goal. Here is my last point:

The end goal is to become a reputable (if not authoritative) opponent of compulsory education and the current factory-model school system, to provide support to all who have been wronged by said system, and to promote positive and constructive discussion on this and other topics. I know that this is a lot to ask for, and I know that this is a lofty goal, but I believe it is attainable, and we can do it without sacrificing every part of our old identity. There are a lot of parts of this forum I'd like to comb through and possibly purge, but far be it from me to include benign established users among those parts. Some measures we take may be stringent, and some may not be heavy-handed enough, but each is a (sometimes painful) step forward.

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06-29-2014 01:38 AM
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Alucard483 Offline
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Post: #21
RE: School Survival's Future - Discussion Thread

Soul, if only we could go back to '07. But that would require rebelnerd and wolfeh to reappear from off the grid.

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06-29-2014 03:10 AM
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thewake Offline
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Post: #22
School Survival's Future - Discussion Thread

Not to mention Kirby.

Anyway, 2007 had very, very few of the sorts of rules that are now commonly enforced on the forums. I don't see how any of this will foster a similar environment to what existed.

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06-29-2014 04:05 AM
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SoulRiser Offline
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Post: #23
School Survival's Future - Discussion Thread

I don't mean the old people from then have to come back, I mean I want the atmosphere to be like how it was back then. We're actually doing reasonably well now,... well, before the recent troll incidents.

Quote:perhaps we are quicker to blame newer users for ignoring our guidelines than we are to accuse established users of breaking the rules
Possibly because we're paranoid and think everyone might be Duelix?

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06-29-2014 05:34 AM
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Shadow

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Post: #24
School Survival's Future - Discussion Thread

That might be true, Soul. I hope your countermeasures work.

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06-29-2014 09:22 AM
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