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It's Your Community! Blog: Classified Crackdown

Posted 06-15-2011 at 07:42 PM by Agent Spencer
Updated 06-19-2011 at 02:40 PM by Agent Spencer

Friends and Forumgoers, I’d like to start off the It’s Your Community! Blog Series by giving you a little rundown of its purpose. I’ve started this blog in order to better serve the AO community by creating an open forum for the community to see the rationale behind the decisions I make as a moderator. Some are popular, some are unpopular, and I think that everyone deserves to give their opinion on the changes that are being made to their community.


Without further ado, this Blog is titled “Classifieds Crackdown” for a reason: I’d like to discuss the new rules in place regarding the classified section. The rule, for all classified sections is:

If you are bumping for the OP directly or indirectly, you will receive an infraction, for each violation.

This includes:

- You Got PM Bumping.
- Free Bumping.
- Asking for Pics Bumping.
- Asking for FPS.
- Any other bumping which involves you posting in the sale thread for no reason.

Trade/money offers can be dealt with via PM. This keeps clutter in the forum down.

The rationale behind this rule is to reduce and eliminate clutter in the Classified Section. If we have people posting up every time a PM is sent, old threads are sent to the top of the page, and new sale threads become quickly buried. The idea is that the Classifieds could be clean and orderly, like a newspaper classified section. Users can list their items without fear of getting buried or sent to the next page immediately due to errant posting and Buyers can peruse the classifieds to easily find out what’s new for sale and which things they wish to purchase, then initiate and complete the deal via PM. This way, things are kept clean and private. And everyone loves clean privates, right?

Jokes aside, the rule is not meant to offend or dissuade buyers or sellers, it’s meant to make sure the forums are less cluttered and useful to both parties. I’m not going to infract you if your post is contributory. If, as a buyer, you post that more information is necessary, then you aren’t going to suddenly be infracted, but if you post up “PM inbound” or “all your base are belong to us” you are going to get infracted, and sellers, if you make useless posts and bump within the 72 hour window, you will get infracted.

But, if you have been infracted, or if you get infracted, in no way is it a personal attack, it’s simply an infraction which lasts a month to serve as a reminder that the new rule is in place and we wish to avoid Bumping threads to the top (BTT Violations).

Please post your opinions, comments, or concerns about this new rule, so that we can all discuss it and I can explain my reasoning and answer any questions or issues that users may have with it.


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  1. Old
    M0nk3y's Avatar
    Can we give infractions for people using AO to host for sale pictures? That annoys me the most
    Posted 06-15-2011 at 08:49 PM by M0nk3y M0nk3y is offline
  2. Old
    Carnival's Avatar
    Thanks for doing this.
    Instead of locking their thread I think you should just delete it, that way people can't view it.
    Posted 06-16-2011 at 11:39 AM by Carnival Carnival is offline
  3. Old
    Texx's Avatar
    I guess I didn't realize this kind of posting caused that much clutter.
    Posted 06-16-2011 at 12:32 PM by Texx Texx is offline
  4. Old
    Italian's Avatar
    Dito what Monkey said. Its not people haven't seen/heard about the many image hosting websites. Its a waste of space, too.
    Posted 06-16-2011 at 02:38 PM by Italian Italian is offline
  5. Old
    Agent Spencer's Avatar
    Texx, the clutter aspect is secondary. It's the fact that sale threads can get buried in minutes/hours due to people saying "Cool Gun" or "YGPM".
    Posted 06-16-2011 at 09:11 PM by Agent Spencer Agent Spencer is offline
  6. Old
    Texx's Avatar
    Why not simply enforce the current rule set, instead of introducing stricter measures?

    You can make rules as strict or lax as you want, but if they are not actively enforced, as was partially the case in the past, they have no real meaning and only further contribute to clutter.

    It not just the lion roar that people fear, but the pokey claws and massive pointed teeth. If the worst they fear is the roar, eventually you can tune out noise. But its pretty difficult to tune out a claw smacking you upside the head or the jaws snapping down on your neck.

    Sorry, was watching this show about lions...
    Posted 06-17-2011 at 09:22 AM by Texx Texx is offline
  7. Old
    Carnival's Avatar
    So you want to be a lion tamer?

    Yeah but in all honesty if you get bit by a lion once your probably going to be more careful in the future. If you don't choose to be careful after that than natural selection will take care of you.
    Posted 06-17-2011 at 03:32 PM by Carnival Carnival is offline
  8. Old
    Texx's Avatar
    My point is, existing rules were not being actively enforced, so there was no incentive for anyone to follow them.

    Introducing stricter rules will not make any difference if they aren't going to be actively enforced.

    All it does is punish the people who do follow the rules by now placing more restrictions upon them, while ignoring the actual issues at hand.
    Posted 06-18-2011 at 01:45 PM by Texx Texx is offline
  9. Old
    Carnival's Avatar
    Okay. When put that way Texx, I agree with you.
    Posted 06-18-2011 at 03:36 PM by Carnival Carnival is offline
  10. Old
    Torque's Avatar

    I agree with all your infraction rules except for one: posting PM inbound. I have done that in the past on sales threads for one reason and one reason only -- some sellers either forget or refuse to log in to read their own damn PMs.

    These types of sellers I'm referring to will go to AO and anonymously check their sales threads first. If they don't see any activity on their threads, they don't see a reason to log in and view their PMs. I call them the "lazy sellers".

    Although I've been guilty of it in the past, I try not to just post "PM inbound..." but something more descriptive like "PM'ing you about the tac belt" or something like that. It let's them know that I'm personally interested in an item, and may have inquired about it first before another interested buyer, or at the very least let's them know the exact date I asked about it.

    PMs by default are ordered by most recent date descending, and when the "lazy seller" finally logs in they will often look at most recent inquirer's PMs first before going down the list. Which is unfair to those buyers that actually inquired about an item first or before someone else. Especially if the seller hasn't logged in for a week or two, or even longer. I know one seller replied to one of my PMs like 3 months after I had sent an inquiry.

    Again, if they would just log in to read their PM's starting with the older ones first then this would all be moot, but some won't do that.

    Just my 2c.
    Posted 06-19-2011 at 12:38 PM by Torque Torque is offline
    Updated 06-19-2011 at 01:12 PM by Torque
  11. Old
    Agent Spencer's Avatar
    Texx, I understand your point, and agree. Technically, this is only a description of the BTT Violation Rule which was not being enforced in the first place.

    Torque, you bring up a good point, however, don't the boards auto-notify if you get PM'ed just as they do if your thread gets posted in? (I think they do, but I honestly don't know, which is why I ask.)
    Posted 06-19-2011 at 02:44 PM by Agent Spencer Agent Spencer is offline
  12. Old
    Carnival's Avatar
    Yeah it pops up first thing if you log in, as well as sending an email to you. Posts on your threads generally do not pop up or email to you.
    Posted 06-19-2011 at 04:02 PM by Carnival Carnival is offline
  13. Old
    Torque's Avatar
    Spencer, yeah they should. When someone PM's me, I get an email notification that someone PM'ed me so I know to go look at it.

    I suspect for some sellers, the problem is that they are using someone else's email address (mommies or daddies?), or a separate email address that they just don't look at that often. Or they just ignore the email reminders. Either way I probably shouldn't be doing business with them if they are that lax, but I usually don't find out how "on top of it" they are until the PM exchanges start going back and forth (or lack thereof, untimely/intermittent exchanges, etc.).

    I guess that's probably a different issue altogether.
    Posted 06-19-2011 at 04:22 PM by Torque Torque is offline
  14. Old
    Italian's Avatar
    Posting "PM inbound" is also a type of security in the event that something goes wrong an the seller never gets your PM. Its happened to me before.
    Posted 06-19-2011 at 09:13 PM by Italian Italian is offline

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