Community Manager Q&A

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This thread is for discussion and questions for the Community Manager candidates. Candidate applications can be found here.

Please keep discussion on topic and related to the Community Manager position and candidates. Any off topic posts will be removed to keep discussion on track.

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I have several questions for @Penguin_

"...increase transparency..."
could you, please, give a few details on what that is supposed to cover and what teams are being included in this area?
will you be talking to the lead only or will you pick up some of the active members in the interogations as well (assuming that this is all about teams activity)?

"...get popular changes that would be good for FAF implemented..."
What defines "popular changes"? are some community ideas measured in quantity considered popular and how is the "good" aspect gonna be tracked?

"...Organize community events ..."
do those also include tournaments or are you reffering to some new forms of community engagement?

overall,i like both applications and would like to dive into both of them 🙂

queuing with a newbie to show him the beauty of tmm and meeting tagada be like:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yLcRpdZ0Xb0&ab_channel=Tomoko

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Both candidates talk about using the Discord as some sort of feedback tool, both have failed to talk in any capacity about how to address the fact the Discord is a gigantically biased sample both in terms of rating and in terms of player game preferences compared to the norm on FAF. So how is that data going to be massaged to actually be a decent metric for player preferences?

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I'd like to hear each candidate's opinions and suggestions, if they have any, on new player experience, retention and training. Is FaF doing better now than it was before on this front? Is there something that you think could be improved further? If there are issues, who is in a position to address them?

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@rezy-noob said in Community Manager Q&A:

I have several questions for @Penguin_
"...increase transparency..."
could you, please, give a few details on what that is supposed to cover and what teams are being included in this area?
will you be talking to the lead only or will you pick up some of the active members

I would talk with some active members and team leads about their processes with the goal of creating more explanatory resources and or appropriate discussion spaces that foster community engagement and transparency. I'd like to work with every team that is open to this idea.

"...get popular changes that would be good for FAF implemented..."
What defines "popular changes"? are some community ideas measured in quantity considered popular and how is the "good" aspect gonna be tracked?

Popular changes are those that would be widely liked and appreciated. Things can be considered good for FAF if they do things like increase FAF's active user count, increase enjoyment from FAF, increase player retention, etc. I do plan on doing polls and surveys as well.

"...Organize community events ..."
do those also include tournaments or are you reffering to some new forms of community engagement?

I am referring to new forms of community engagement. For example, I will start with doing some scheduled casual game nights, like Jip suggested. Other new events depend on what people want to do. Some potential examples would be things like scheduled discussions on different topics (ie: a discussion on streaming/casting and what people like/dislike/etc, or a discussion on different approaches to mapping, or a discussion on how the map generator works, etc).

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Both candidates talk about using the Discord as some sort of feedback tool, both have failed to talk in any capacity about how to address the fact the Discord is a gigantically biased sample both in terms of rating and in terms of player game preferences compared to the norm on FAF. So how is that data going to be massaged to actually be a decent metric for player preferences?

  • I would like to use the in-client polling system to get some of the data, as that would be a more representative sampling, but I would keep usage of that to a reasonable level to avoid spamming people.

  • I would also like to further investigate the possibility of having a polling/survey section on the in-client news page.

  • I would also link to the FAF Discord's polling/survey section from a variety of different FAF-related communities in the hopes of reaching a larger and more diverse audience.

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@penguin_ said in Community Manager Q&A:

  • I would like to use the in-client polling system to get some of the data, as that would be a more representative sampling, but I would keep usage of that to a reasonable level to avoid spamming people.

As a note there is no in-client polling at the moment that has not been added to the client yet.

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@penguin_ said in Community Manager Q&A:

I would also like to further investigate the possibility of having a polling/survey section on the in-client news page.

This would not work due to how the News page Operates and would require a redesign on how the Newshub works as all that is in the client is an embedded webpage. The promo team currently has no desire to change the news hub while were working on the website changes

"The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few" - Spock

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@sheikah said in Community Manager Q&A:

As a note there is no in-client polling at the moment that has not been added to the client yet.

Yes, I should've worded that better. I meant that I would like to occasionally use the in-client pop-up system that was previously used to get a more representative/greater sample of FAF players to respond to a poll.

@rowey said in Community Manager Q&A:

@penguin_ said in Community Manager Q&A:

I would also like to further investigate the possibility of having a polling/survey section on the in-client news page.

This would not work due to how the News page Operates and would require a redesign on how the Newshub works as all that is in the client is an embedded webpage. The promo team currently has no desire to change the news hub while were working on the website changes

It should be easy to have a polling/survey section that basically functions as an informative link to the actual polls/surveys (ie: it could be like a news post or like one of the other links presently on the news page). If you don't want to have one, that's okay, but I do think it would be worth investigating and should be quite doable.

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@penguin_ said in Community Manager Q&A:

It should be easy to have a polling/survey section that basically functions as an informative link to the actual polls/surveys (ie: it could be like a news post or like one of the other links presently on the news page). If you don't want to have one, that's okay, but I do think it would be worth investigating and should be quite doable.

Adding Sidelinks is Fine that's easy todo but a polling system into the news hub would be another tasks itself

"The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few" - Spock

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What am I electing the community manager for - to represent my interests in whatever

Both candidates say nothing about what interests they intend to represent going forward and instead just say they will poll and listen, so there is nothing to determine for who represents my interests better. Instead all I can do is read platforms for what people intend to do and theoretically hope my interests get represented in those intentions.

Penguin made several concrete proposals on how to actually do anything, Deribus has made nothing because I have no idea what his history is supposed to show me when it isn't showcased to lead to anything new. Like why do I care that you trained people, you aren't applying for a trainer role. Likewise what is making a Discord channel supposed to show me about anything. Are you going to make some poll channel ran like #cute-animals or are you going to make more #cute-animal tier channels or are you just going to add random channels and see if people use them? Why don't you talk about the survey you ran before and ways to optimize your process of data collection or something? Did it lead to anything? If it didn't, why didn't it. How can you fix that in the future.

Like what issues are you going to survey? Who are you going to contact both on contributor and user side? Any issues that are currently pressing that you intend to investigate? How would you decide the correct sample pool for data collection? Did the poll you ran prior teach you anything about data pruning/massaging/analysis? Hiding behind "we'll see later" when you also haven't taken a definitive stance on anything means there is nothing for me to even review nor any promises to uphold you to nor any milestones to look forward to. I'd be electing a moderator that sometimes trains and talks to dudes to (maybe) do more of the same. (depending on board convos could even do less!)

I mean I hate to beat a dead horse but seriously the 1 new thing you proposed you'd do, a rehash of This Week in Slack, you then immediately walked back and said you might not do it because it could be a lot of reading.

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@ftxcommando said in Community Manager Q&A:

Both candidates talk about using the Discord as some sort of feedback tool

I did not, all of the feedback sources in my post were from the forum.

So how is data going to be massaged to actually be a decent metric for player preferences?

This is a good question. Ultimately the problem is the vast majority of the community is uninterested in giving feedback and never will be. While I can work with the promo team to advertise and encourage opportunities for feedback, I must also keep track of what subgroups of the community are actually responding. The Naval Balance poll I did a while back (which was a great learning experience) at the very least asked for the ratings of players.

At this point my ideal solution would be cooperation with the dev team to allow polls in the website, so it can automatically pull information like rating and game preferences that I can use to interpret the feedback but also reach out to groups that I feel are under-represented.

@phong said in Community Manager Q&A:

I'd like to hear each candidate's opinions and suggestions, if they have any, on new player experience, retention and training. Is FaF doing better now than it was before on this front? Is there something that you think could be improved further? If there are issues, who is in a position to address them?

It's very difficult to get an accurate impression because it's been so long since I've gone through that myself. I've trained a handful of complete newbies over the past year so I do hear their troubles, but that represents the tiny subgroup of new people that come out seek training.

To my knowledge new players have the following problems:

  • Getting kicked from custom lobbies
  • Long queue times in matchmaking, and very imbalanced matches for the first 10 or so
  • Very steep learning curve
  • Few similarly ranked players willing to play anything but dual gap and astro

One idea I have is to put AI into low rated matchmaking games, to bulk up the player count while also providing a "smoother" learning experience for these new players. As with everything, not committing to this just yet.

@ftxcommando said in Community Manager Q&A:

I mean I hate to beat a dead horse but seriously the 1 new thing you proposed you'd do, a rehash of This Week in Slack, you then immediately walked back and said you might not do it because it could be a lot of reading.

I understand your concern, and it comes from my desire to remain flexible, especially this is a brand-new position. We're all familiar with politicians' willingness to make promises that they never end up keeping, and I'm trying to avoid putting myself in that position.

My plan for the position is generally:

  1. Collect feedback
  2. Discuss with community and team leads how to address said feedback
  3. Execute improvements after discussion phase

We're pre-step 1 right now, so skipping to what step 3 would be seems premature.

That said, I agree that my stance is too nebulous at the moment, and I'll add an appendix to my application of ideas I'd like to implement.

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I'd like to hear both candidates view on how they intend to deal with 'no' from the contributors side.

The presence of significant feedback that supports a given feature doesn't mean that it will happen. Other work may take priority - even if that can take up to months to finish. Or the feature in question may not be technically possible. Or - we're volunteers after all - the contributors in question are just not interested in helping to create, finalize and maintain the feature in question.

A work of art is never finished, merely abandoned

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@jip said in Community Manager Q&A:

I'd like to hear both candidates view on how they intend to deal with 'no' from the contributors side.

I'd like to get a reason for why they aren't interested in implementing this feature, and depending on the reason I'll see if I can get someone else to. Other than that I don't see it as an issue. You, Shiekah, and Brutus can all attest that I've made many feature requests in the past and I'm fairly used to getting a "no".

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It tends to be more related to what the developer is interested in working on, if they're not interested their not going to spend their free time working on it. at the end of the day, the developers for faf are spending their time at home working on faf because they enjoy it. one example of this is the FAF client we have gone from Python to Java not just because python is bad but the developer we have now is more used to java than python so the jave client gets more development time and the python client got deprecated it just the cycle on how thing goes and people come and go.

"The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few" - Spock

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I am also interested in the approach when the tables are turned. Say the community indicates via some polls or other ways that they would want thing X. Now it might be that this thing X would actually be bad for the community, just because it gains popularity doesn't mean it should be implemented for the overall good and success of the community.

Can you say no and filter out bad apples like that, instead of just straight piping all good and bad ideas forwards just because they get popular?

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@jip said in Community Manager Q&A:

I'd like to hear both candidates view on how they intend to deal with 'no' from the contributors side.

It depends on the details of the situation. If it's just that a particular contributor does not want to make it, I'd accept that. However, I might ask a different contributor to make it, or I might even make it myself, depending on what it is. However, if the desired feature is technically impossible, I would of course accept that. Depending on the details of the situation, I might explore alternative ideas that would be technically possible, or I might just move on to other ideas.

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@giebmasse said in Community Manager Q&A:

I am also interested in the approach when the tables are turned. Say the community indicates via some polls or other ways that they would want thing X. Now it might be that this thing X would actually be bad for the community, just because it gains popularity doesn't mean it should be implemented for the overall good and success of the community.

Can you say no and filter out bad apples like that, instead of just straight piping all good and bad ideas forwards just because they get popular?

Yes; I want to avoid things that would be bad for the community. I certainly can say 'no' and filter out bad apples.

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@penguin_ said in Community Manager Q&A:

Yes; I want to avoid things that would be bad for the community. I certainly can say 'no' and filter out bad apples.

Examples applicable to FAF?

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Here are some examples of ideas that would be bad for the community that I would reject:

  • Removing global rating without a sufficient replacement

  • Removing the most recent section on the vault

  • Removing all adjacency bonuses from the game

  • Disallowing all icon mods

  • Unrating Dual Gap

  • etc