Announcements Serious Discussion’s removal from Discord.

Dionysos

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A few of you may or may not have noticed but the Serious Discussion channel has now been hidden in Discord.

We want to promote a friendly atmosphere for Final Fantasy fans where people from all walks of life can feel welcome. After much discussion it has been decided that a community such as ours really does not benefit from this type of diversion.

Instead, if there are any ‘serious discussions’ (political issues and debates, and so on) you are very welcome to bring them here, to the forum, where they can be more easily monitored in threads. Please do not discuss political discussions anymore on discord.

Pandemonium is the appropriate section for such matters:
https://www.finalfantasyforums.net/forums/pandemonium.47/


If you have any queries, please let us know.
 
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Jake

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Upon giving this some more thought, I'm not sure I understand exactly why step one is to purge the discussion channel and not, at the very least, make it opt-in or out. Or yanno, just... moderate it? There are so many things that could be done in this situation, so from an outside perspective it's just bizarre that you've decided to just burn it all down instead. In addition to this, telling people to post their serious discussions here instead is honestly a bit insulting (also why would you even grant this concession if such discourse offers no benefits to the community?). I don't want to sound too negative, but this forum is hardly the hive of activity that it once was. It's not gonna foster any kind of real discussion about any topic, let alone serious issues, in any kind of timely manner whatsoever. The majority of people who remain have long since moved to Discord.

Really does just seem like you guys are trying to sweep everything under the rug here. But anyway that's just my opinion.
 
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Mitsuki

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I understand why some members might be upset over this news. It was a tough decision to make, and it wasn't something that was discussed in just one day. It took a few weeks before we even brought this up to the staff.

To make this clear, we didn't base the decision on any specific member, opinion, political stance, or topics. We simply cannot touch that for obvious reasons. One of the underlying issue here is that it did create toxicity in the discord atmosphere that some people just don't really want to see. It created conflict and negativity that destroys morale and productivity overall, particularly to the ones who has no choice but to moderate a live chat that can go on for hours. People don't often see the discussion behind-the-scenes, what steps we would need to take, etc. to bring balance to FFF's culture.

In this stage in our lives, we simply just don't have the time and energy to manage this site on top of a discord chat (in this case, serious discussion) that can quickly get heated, plus also work on other projects and correspond with people outside of FFF to bring something unique and fun to what we're doing here. We want to enjoy our time here too and despite people saying that the site isn't active anymore - it has never stopped a few of us from trying after all these years... but unfortunately the level of moderation that goes with political topics these days simply doesn't work with us anymore.

People are always free to create their own discord with FFF members to discuss politics there or set up a group DM, which will not be part of the site. This is not meant to be insulting to anyone in any way, but we do think that is the best course of action to take.

Thank you for your feedback, Ross. Despite your heavy opinion on it, it's important that you express your opinion too. We have already taken into consideration beforehand that there will be some backlash that can't be avoided, and we're fine with this.
 
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Dionysos

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Upon giving this some more thought, I'm not sure I understand exactly why step one is to purge the discussion channel and not, at the very least, make it opt-in or out.

I hear your concerns and this wasn't an easy decision to make. Just to let it be known, I actually proposed and spoke in favour of an opt-in idea but the counter-point was that it might be impractical to moderate and could create a closed secret club which would look a bit strange on a Final Fantasy server. So we did consider other options but at the end decided on this one.

We've had a number of complaints/concerns about how the channel looks sometimes and it has put some people off engaging with what is 90% of the time a friendly community. This is really why it was brought up again and we had to discuss it.

We’re trying to encourage new members to be as active as they’d like to be as we have a good number of new members and new activity is increasing, despite of Discord. Some people have put a lot of effort into the forum recently and we don’t want to give people the wrong impression about what this community is about.

For serious matters and debates why can't people just create threads like we always used to before Discord? Threads are a lot easier for staff to monitor than Discord discussions which flow like hasty rapids. Sometimes before moderators can catch up on what has happened people's brains have already been dashed against the rocks and everyone else is drowning. We're left with search and rescue. Debates may be much better off on the forum where it could contribute towards increasing that activity here in a more productive environment where site rules can be followed more closely.

While individuals on this forum may never agree on many topics, the thing which unites us and allows us to do good here is our passion for Final Fantasy (ranging from a rather cynical, sarcastic interest to effectively worshiping every detail of the franchise, etc). Our shared fandom and what we have in common with each other should be our primary focus here, and giving the friendships that have developed from this community a chance to thrive.
 
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Paddy McGee

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I'm on the same level as what Ross has stated above, honestly.

For serious matters and debates why can't people just create threads like we always used to before Discord? Threads are a lot easier for staff to monitor than Discord discussions which flow like hasty rapids. Sometimes before moderators can catch up on what has happened people's brains have already been dashed against the rocks and everyone else is drowning. We're left with search and rescue. Debates may be much better off on the forum where it could contribute towards increasing that activity here in a more productive environment where site rules can be followed more closely.

I'm not sure why moving the discussion here instead of discord will make it easier for new members to engage with the group without dealing with this sort of content - if we want movement and an increased interaction rate on both platforms, they're going to see the political discussions if they happen here instead. If the idea is to close threads which approach the level of debate we had in Serious before, which is something easier to do here than in Discord... Why allow people to even talk about those topics here in the first place?

What about discussing political aspects in Final Fantasy games? Is that allowed in general on Discord?

My avatar, from a FFF forum event itself, is political in nature. Are there consequences to me making it my avatar on the Discord channel?

Feels like there's gaps here. Just my opinion.
 

Galadín

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I'm on the same level as what Ross has stated above, honestly.



I'm not sure why moving the discussion here instead of discord will make it easier for new members to engage with the group without dealing with this sort of content - if we want movement and an increased interaction rate on both platforms, they're going to see the political discussions if they happen here instead. If the idea is to close threads which approach the level of debate we had in Serious before, which is something easier to do here than in Discord... Why allow people to even talk about those topics here in the first place?

What about discussing political aspects in Final Fantasy games? Is that allowed in general on Discord?

My avatar, from a FFF forum event itself, is political in nature. Are there consequences to me making it my avatar on the Discord channel?

Feels like there's gaps here. Just my opinion.

There has always been a platform to discuss political aspects present in FF games which has also been permitted on the Discord channel. Since FF politics has not been the main thrust for the vast majority of the discussion present on the Serious Discussion channel, it is self evident that there is no correlation between the talking of fictitious politics and that pertaining to the real world.

Your avatar might be political in nature yet it's context is that of the Moogle Murder Mystery game, so again, there is no correlation.

In regards to your initial paragraph, that has been covered in Dionysos' previous post. To extrapolate on that point, the forum rules themselves help uphold a standard of conduct on this platform and put in place the need for respect, empathy and other such ethos and parameters within our community discussions. The reason this platform is given here to discuss more serious topics is because the forum provides the balanced environment needed to maintain forum debate.

I hope this clarifies any gaps in your understanding of this decision.
 
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Duhemsounds

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Hello there

I've been part of active members in discord and in some discussions. Most of the time I participated in the general channel but I've read a bit of the serious discussions.

This Final Fantasy community is beautiful and plenty of various profiles from everywhere in the world. The staff is working hard for the mogazine and other cool events are often made. That's what must put in the spotlight.

The thruth is on discord we've lost the main theme. We should be discussing a lot about the FF7 Remake rumors, about the future games and other FF topics. The discord server doesn't really looks like a FF place actually and I can understand that new members are disappointed about that.

More problematic, some of the political discussions / society debates that have taken place on the discord have harmed some people because some of these topics were very sensitive and we all know that there's no good answer. When it comes to politics, religion and other sensitive things each one has convictions and no matter what are ours we will always be harming someone. That's the problem of these topics. They are very interesting to discuss, each one can provide a different point of view and smart discussions can take place but that melting of opinions has a very high probability to be harmful for some people. As FFF is a friendly gaming community, one single people harmed is already too much.

I hope I haven't harmed anyone on the discord because this has never been my intention. I always try to step out of politics and debates, I've made sometimes an exception on this discord because discussions were looking smart and everyone was giving interesting points of views from different countries. Now I see it's harming people and I'm not ok with this.

I'm making music for people worldwide, I have instrumental covers which have the chance to be out of any debates as there are no lyrics, nothing that can be political or harmful for anyone. I agree with the staff, I think this is better to end the serious discussions topic and I think the forum topic about politics should also not be continued.

Sure many FF games are including politics and philosophical elements that can open debates. But this is in the FF topic.
For other debates about what's happening in our countries and in the world there are better places than FFF forums and discord to discuss about them.

FFF must stay friendly for all which means no politics, no harmful debates of any kind and no adult jokes or things like that because sometimes we are forgetting that younger people are reading even if they don't interact with other people.
 

blakstang98

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Once upon a time, before I joined this forum 10 years ago, I was part of another forum. This forum was run much more strictly than FFF. On this site, they did not allow any political discussion. Their theory on that was that it just induced too many flamewars. Squashing the discussion eliminates that. Now, that is a bit too strict, but I totally understand their logic. Keep in mind, this was over 10 years ago, and it was obvious that people had a hard time keeping their composure in political debates.

Being a looser forum, FFF has always allowed it, and serious discussion in general. And when this forum was busier, the serious discussion section was pretty happening overall. I used to moderate that forum, and it was never easy, there were always people too eager to force their political opinion on others and having a hissy fit if the other person(s) didn't see eye to eye with them. Hell, there was a religious discussion subsection, that had less love overall, but would provoke the bad in people from time to time when there was activity.

Now I think one important aspect is being lost, and when I was around a year ago, I mentioned it to Dan. The traffic on the forum is weak, while discord has more. And as I said, the forum should try to direct more traffic to the forum, because it's better for the forum. Discord is a nice little chat space and you can even attract outside people to the forum members (maybe they don't necessarily join the forum), but don't forget, they have to care more about their forum traffic than the traffic of a 3rd party entity. And be thankful, they are giving you an option to discuss serious topics, like politics, in their space. Personally, I can't fault a forum for wanting to direct some traffic to their space. And they can better apply their rules, whereas a grey area can be apparent in discord.

I don't envy the poor bastard(s) that have to moderate it. Like I said earlier, people's feeling are hurt when someone else doesn't agree with them. Look at today's political culture. If you disagree with someone, or an organization, you protest (sometimes riot), you get advertisers to boycott, some even go as far as doxxing. Unfortunately, people aren't mature enough to have a spirited debate about a serious topic and end a discussion agreeing to disagree. It's just another reason to eliminate, or in this case, possibly reduce the discussion (or make it more coherent than a chat space).

There are plenty of things I disagree with on this forum, enough to visit very infrequently, or not at all. But I totally agree with them on this decision. The right amount allowed discussion is somewhere between 4chan (if that's still a thing) and my old forum, not fully muted, but not a complete free-for-all. You can discuss on the forum and maybe you'll even increase the traffic enough that you can have a fairly fast-moving, running debate, without having to wait 3 days for a respond. You have that power.

Happy debating!
 
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