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I don't consider myself very tactful, so I apologize in advance if this comes off as disrespectful. I just want to provoke some discussion on the topic and perhaps have some light shed on certain things.

 

Right off the bat, when I heard about there being a writing team I thought it was a little odd for a community. Not because it can't bring anything to the table, but more so because I'd imagine it's not enough to warrant having an entire team for. From what I've gathered, their one and only responsibility that they consistently need to tend to is newsletters. It seems there hasn't been one in many months and that prior to that they were getting bunched together. So it seems they only had one point of reference for their work within a 3 month time span at certain points. The other responsibility outlined in the thread that Trigger made is that they do writing requests, but it seems they're very infrequent and that doesn't exactly benefit the community in any way.

 

In no way is it harmful to keep the team around if it's deemed necessary, but from an outsider looking in it seems useless as it stands. Perhaps they handle other things that are not visible to the public. If so, it'd probably be best to be more transparent about it because people applying for Writer really only foresee writing a newsletter occasionally and maybe grabbing a writing request if one ever comes up. This could also explain how seemingly hard it is to get members for the team. This forum seems to be covered in people that can write quite well, but with such a small responsibility set it probably seems pointless to join up. This is from my perspective of course, and one of the goals of this thread is to see other perspectives and maybe have some facts thrown at me that will change mine.

 

So I guess the suggestion here is really just to evaluate the team; what they do, how beneficial it is, etc. The other goal of this thread was to possibly get some clarity on why the team exists though.

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You can read more about the Writing Team here --> https://gflclan.com/forums/topic/48338-writing-team-information/

 

 

Anyways the Writing Team is, in my opinion, very beneficial to GFL. Not only do they complete a monthly newsletter read by hundreds of people, they also complete requests made by the players and staff. Some of those requests include proof-reading announcements, writing up MOTDs, etc. And as for why the team exists, well, let's just say there is a role that needs to be filled.

 

Of course I no longer lead the Writing Team so some of this could change.


֍ Trigger ֍

 

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I'm not entirely sure if I'm convinced the team is necessary. From what I can gather it seems that right now it's not in the best state it can be in if a more detailed and specific list of responsibilities can't be given immediately. If someone asks what a team does, I think you should have at least 3, preferably more, solid responsibilities that you can list off immediately. Even now, it seems like the team is very dependent on other people. For example, they need writing requests to be made, they need things to happen to be able to proofread announcements, they need managers to request for them to write up MOTDs (I can't imagine that happens very often), so on and so forth. In the case of an event coordinator, they depend on themselves to fulfill their responsibilities by creating events and helping out with others' events. In the case of a server manager, they depends on themselves to fulfill their responsibilities by improving their server, communicating with their players, etc.  It seems as though for the very large part, the writing team sort of needs to be fed to be able to operate properly. This means that for a majority of their time, a writing team member can hold the rank while sitting AFK and still pretty much be fulfilling their duties, because it's very possible that they can go for a very long time without having any. A newsletter every 3 months being the only consistent responsibility (which really only requires 1 person) doesn't convince me that an entire team / rank needed to be formed to do it.

 

Quite frankly, I highly doubt the Directors that write announcements need proofreaders. I also feel as though if a manager who can't write very well needed someone to write an MOTD, a fellow manager or an admin looking for a promotion or just trying to be useful would be more than willing to help. This isn't me denying that perhaps the writing team does get used for this stuff (would appreciate the actual facts for this though) but I am saying that it just doesn't feel like a team should be formed if they don't have things they can constantly be working on. A server manager can log on and do something multiple times a week, if not virtually everyday. But like I said, it seems like that isn't the case with writers at all. Is that a bad thing? That's really up to the higherups to decide. Like I've mentioned, there's no harm in having the team around, but in my opinion there's no sense in a part of the community either sitting dormant or wasting people's energy. One immediate thing you could do to improve the team is actually get a list of what they can do (like proofreading posts or even writing them) and then go on to encourage people like server managers to utilize them. Even in the revised writing team expectations thread, there's no list of responsibilities that would attract new writers. (imo, of course)

 

So to reiterate: absolutely no harm in the team being a thing whatsoever (besides maybe wasting some time better spent elsewhere?), personally think it's worth an evaluation because I think there can be improvements, but overall it seems like minuscule responsibilities that can easily be passed off to other people as they come up.

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To be fair and to sort of go against my argument, I suppose the needing to be fed to operate properly thing also goes for the GFX team, same with not necessarily having solid responsibilities. However, it seems like they get requests more consistently and I'm sure it happens privately too, probably because graphics isn't something most people can do, whereas writing is. Proofreading posts for instance seems like an odd responsibility. Fixing a comma or correcting a word still doesn't seem useful or enough to justify a team, nor would I imagine someone would make a request for a proofreader when applications like Grammarly exist.

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Maybe you'd be interested in the writing team see if maybe you can come up with some ideas to help it ;)


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2 hours ago, Joshy said:

Maybe you'd be interested in the writing team see if maybe you can come up with some ideas to help it ;)

 

Honestly I wouldn't be opposed to helping from the inside, but I wanted to see how much help I could be without joining the team. Part of what sparked this thread was legitimately to get clarity on what the team does, because it seems interesting at first glance. But after looking around all I could really come up with for what they do is the newsletters, which prompted me to propose the criticisms above. 

 

I'm hoping some current writers or higherups chime in at some point. Trigger's post was useful, but it'd be interesting to see if other relevant parties agree with his sentiment or mine and if anything is being talked about behind the scenes to improve things already.

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It would be difficult to respond because the team is so small right now and they just got a new team leader.  What you can do by joining it is not only help it grow, but you could help shape it into a useful and create team.

 

I personally have an idea I think it would require a much larger team, but a small team could start on it or drive it.  There was a big change recently (mod team and introduction of PR) and so I am waiting for a few fires to burn out and settle down first before I start tossing idea grenades in.


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the purpose of a writing team is redundant you dont need to pretend to be nice about it haha 


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Almost all roles are redundant.  When you walk into a big store we'll just say Walmart for example I'm going to take a stab in the dark and say there's a Store Manager there.  Would it make sense on a regular basis to have them greet you at the entrance, do the sales pitch, offer you technical support, take you to check out, ring you up at the checkout, check your receipt at the exit, then put all the carts away and get back to restocking the merchandise and answer the phones if there are any calls?  I'm pretty sure they could do it.

 

I know I'm exaggerating, but the point is that any other employee is redundant, right?  Yes.  You have all of these redundant teams (like the writing team) so that not everything is relying on a small few to preserve the flow; it also helps with the cycle of leadership.  When our current leaders move away from their position someone else has to fill in their shoes...  definitely been behind the scenes myself both in GFL and even in real life opportunities and I've got to tell you that it is a really something great when someone has been doing these redundant roles and you're looking for the next leadership team member.

 

Another problem with this way of thinking is only thinking about what needs to be done.  It's not a great way to think.

 

A good hockey player plays where the puck is. A great hockey player plays where the puck is going to be.” ― Wayne Gretzky

 

 


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If the team really held a lot of weight I feel like this thread would have a lot more responses and / or would've been shut down very hard and fast. If someone criticized the GFX team, you'd shut them down by talking about how the community is literally covered in graphics; the forums, the Discord, the game servers, etc. If someone criticized the Social Media team, well you'd respond by saying they manage our social media which is multiple avenues that can potentially largely promote growth. With this, a couple lines were mustered up in its defense by one person, which really just boils down to them doing newsletters. Perhaps relevant parties just didn't see this thread or chose to ignore it and there is more to say in its defense, it just obviously doesn't look that way.

 

I'm not trying to get people up in arms about disbanding the writing team or anything, but I feel like there's a lot of room for growth here. Are staff members informed about the writing team and do they have an easy avenue to contact / utilize them? Perhaps the writing team can go around and try to fix up / reformat important threads to make them look better? Maybe those newsletters can be emailed to users that haven't visited the forums in a while to spark some interest in returning? I'm sure my quick ideas can be expanded on by others and lead to a more effective team, but my thoughts really remain the same about the team being unnecessary. I'd love to be shown I'm wrong though and see some very transparent, useful work being done by the writers.

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Posted  Edited by Joshy

With only 2 people on there (I think) I don't think it does hold a lot of weight; I also don't think the team requires heavy activity on the forums, and so they're probably not commenting on threads like these too often :(

 

I admit the current output isn't very transparent neither impressive.  I think in the very direct picture and current practice: You're right...  I feel like I'm not seeing much.

 

Personally: I have a couple of ideas.  Something I learned funny enough while in retail was to not "drop all your grenades at once" I'm treading carefully before I release new ideas.  I do have an idea for the writing team...  wouldn't sell it as the most epic idea it's probably been brought up before...  I think it's going to require a few writers hopefully acquiring a few new people from different servers and their game modes so it can be a little more diverse, but for now I think the announcement or two here or there is okay.

 

Just like a magician wont reveal all their secrets... might not show anyone how to levitate... but I'll spill a card or a coin trick.  I think something that would be a good idea for a writing team member is to start writing a weekly journal thread kind of like a blog within GFL.  They could blog about the community and general updates they've noticed...  have something like an opinions column...  maybe do something fun like try a new game mode every other week and write their thoughts on it.  I think that would be a lot of fun, and it wouldn't have to be anything official (quite honestly you wouldn't need writer to do it, but it would be a good excuse kind of like journalism).

 

Something I think our leadership should do is they should start having writer team do the community announcements more often.  This is actually not unusual at all anywhere you go.  A lot of places they will have very specific people who do the announcements instead of the CEO, Presidents or VPs doing it, and same thing for when the news talks to them.  I know at NASA the Flight Director does not talk to the astronauts; it's CAPCOM.  What's very common too is when people are in kind of high ranking positions and see what's going on behind the scenes... when they communicate... everything comes together perfectly in their head and everything is inferred when they make the announcements, but in reality people who are just members or VIP they read the announcements a lot of things seem to come out the blue or doesn't really make sense.  I think if a writer were to write and make the announcements they might actually communicate like a person so that the audience understands it a little bit better; they'll probably make it more personable compared to have some robotic-like person just making some dull announcement.

 

I think the quote I posted earlier really hits the spot on this topic.  I personally see the puck going somewhere where having a team like this will be very useful.

Edited by Joshy

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9 hours ago, Dominic said:

If someone criticized the GFX team, you'd shut them down by talking about how the community is literally covered in graphics; the forums, the Discord, the game servers, etc. If someone criticized the Social Media team, well you'd respond by saying they manage our social media which is multiple avenues that can potentially largely promote growth.

Personally, I do not believe every team has to have the same weight or value. Bue said something in one of our conversations that hit it right on the head. "As it’s beneficial in a few different aspects, then that’s completely fine." Some teams are going to have more responsibility and more things to do than others and that's completely fine. 

 

9 hours ago, Dominic said:

If the team really held a lot of weight I feel like this thread would have a lot more responses and / or would've been shut down very hard and fast.

 

9 hours ago, Joshy said:

With only 2 people on there (I think) I don't think it does hold a lot of weight; I also don't think the team requires heavy activity on the forums, and so they're probably not commenting on threads like these too often :(

 

Regarding these two statements. When this thread was made the Writing Team was going through a transition of power, so there wasn't much to be said at the time. We now have a new Team Leader who has quite a few ideas they want to implement and will do within time. I apologize for not responding to this thread until now, but we are very excited about the next steps for the Writing Team and will continue to keep you updated in future! 

 

10 hours ago, Dominic said:

Perhaps the writing team can go around and try to fix up / reformat important threads to make them look better?

 

I like this idea and we are currently working on it now to see if there are any MOTD's or old threads that need a visual facelift. 

 

9 hours ago, Joshy said:

Just like a magician wont reveal all their secrets... might not show anyone how to levitate... but I'll spill a card or a coin trick.  I think something that would be a good idea for a writing team member is to start writing a weekly journal thread kind of like a blog within GFL.  They could blog about the community and general updates they've noticed...

 

This idea doesn't look bad at first glance, but when you think about our newsletters you realize it's kind of just the same thing but would be posted every week instead of every month. It's just not necessary and wouldn't have any benefit that the newsletter doesn't already have. But that being said, I do agree with doing newsletters more frequently. There has been a trend of the Writing Team posting a newsletter every three months or so and a lot of important things happen within that time period. I believe that newsletters should be put out monthly to make it less jumbled up and confusing. I plan to talk with Bue and see what she thinks of this, but I don't see why she would be against it. 

 

9 hours ago, Joshy said:

have something like an opinions column...  maybe do something fun like try a new game mode every other week and write their thoughts on it.

 

In theory the "opinion column" idea could work, but it could go downhill very fast due to some topics being pretty controversial. I like the idea because it would give everyone an open forum to express their opinions on certain topics, but I feel that there would need to be a lot of discussion behind the scenes before this is implemented. The scope of teams does not need to be massive. Pressuring such a small team to do so much could cause people to burn out, we can grow but it is just going to take some time.

 

To finish this all out, the Writing Team plans on making a post very soon to try and recruit some new members, to give us the extra help we need to do some of the bigger ideas people have suggested. 

 

If you know anyone or if you yourselves would like to apply for the Writing Team you can here: https://gflclan.com/forms/171-writer-application-form/;) 

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1 hour ago, Auralanity said:

Hot take: the writing team doesn't post threads for the community since the higher ups just want to farm likes. :kappa:

 

Don't tell them my secret!

 

I do hope to see the team grow.  I think it has a lot of potential.  Great responses and thanks for sparking the dialogue!  Sometimes all of this is just sitting in peoples heads and they have good intentions, but someone sometimes has to say something to get things rolling.


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I think we'll just have to sit back and wait for these ideas that are apparently brewing to hopefully come to fruition then. Honestly, it just seems like people are afraid to be blunt about the fact that the team isn't really doing anything.. understandably so (sort of) if you're an incumbent. Having the team should be easily justifiable, transition of power or not, different value from other teams or not, a thread like this should be shut down quite simply in my opinion. I'm glad that at the very least these ideas that have been given were acknowledged and hopefully the team starts reaching to the public for help more. I think there's plenty more people with the best interest of the community in mind, which includes helping this team succeed. There's clearly a lot of room for improvement, this thread has a lot of great ideas after bouncing off of 2-3 people so I'm sure there's more possibilities beyond just this too. 

 

Looking forward to seeing what comes next.

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Hello!

I took the time to read through the responses ever since this thread first came out. I was a little reluctant to comment my own thoughts because I wanted to wait for you guys to see the changes that are drawing near, yourself. Seeing that this discussion is still in the negotiation/argumental state, I thought that I might drop a few words myself.

 

 

On 11/16/2020 at 2:23 PM, Dominic said:

it seems like the team is very dependent on other people. For example, they need writing requests to be made, they need things to happen to be able to proofread announcements, they need managers to request for them to write up MOTDs

You're not wrong with stating this. This is how the writing team used to be for the last two years, despite some of the independent work that was given. Though, you guys brought up one of the ideas that we are adding into the Team's objectives. It's still in the making but I plan on implementing the idea of us updating any of the Division's or Team's announcements as soon as I can get that official.

On top of that, we still will be accepting writing requests... more than we already have. Dominic, you said that you can't imagine us getting a lot of requests but we for sure do. We get a lot more than I could ever imagine, lol. Though, they usually come VIA Dms rather than the specified channel ...  -.- 

 

On 11/16/2020 at 2:23 PM, Dominic said:

One immediate thing you could do to improve the team is actually get a list of what they can do (like proofreading posts or even writing them)

Trigger happened to already refer you to the thread that already has this information. I do plan on updating it after all or most of the newest inclusions are final and official.

 

 

On 11/16/2020 at 2:44 PM, Dominic said:

Proofreading posts for instance seems like an odd responsibility. Fixing a comma or correcting a word still doesn't seem useful or enough to justify a team, nor would I imagine someone would make a request for a proofreader when applications like Grammarly exist.

Trying to stay straight-forward as much as I possibly can.. but Grammarly is certainly a scam, nor would it ever be a reliable source to fix any or all of the issues that may need to be revised within a message. Speaking from experience of course. I've ordered the best version of Grammarly and it doesn't do much what-so-ever. A lot of the programmed processes specifically made for proofreading are in no way of being reliable either.

In addition, I don't find this an odd responsibility at all. GFL is an ever-growing community that will need to stay sophisticated as much as possible to stay essential. The last thing that we would need is a Server Manager+ having grammatical errors written all across any important announcement. Also, it's no where near "odd" if all the Writing Team is doing is using their strengths to improve any salient statements. I do see where you are coming from to where it may be a little unnecessary for us to do so when it's simple as is to get anyone else to read over it and get input from there, but have it be more ideal and beneficial when running it through the people that pursue that specific strength.

I would consider this feature of the Writing Team to be one of the many accessories that we can offer, rather than having other main obligations as is and more also in the making.

 

 

16 hours ago, Dominic said:

I'm not trying to get people up in arms about disbanding the writing team or anything, but I feel like there's a lot of room for growth here

Yes! There's a lot of room for growth here and that's exactly the idea that I'm trying to chase. Despite the addition that I mentioned above, I was also really interested into the idea of making short-stories dedicated to every holiday that has it's own little twist tied into GFL. Giving an example of what @Salad did for GFL, celebrating Halloween and making horror it's theme...

This won't be exactly "beneficial" for GFL's well-being but more of it's enjoyment and entertainment. This will allow the team to gather more of a friendly "face" for GFL, if that makes sense. 

 

 

15 hours ago, Joshy said:

With only 2 people on there (I think) I don't think it does hold a lot of weight; I also don't think the team requires heavy activity on the forums, and so they're probably not commenting on threads like these too often :(

Oh, haha. I'm kinda surprised that you would jump to this dismissive claim honestly. @Serenity and @Dragoon are both extremely active when it comes to the GFL forums. I can guarantee that every time you click on their forums profile, the "last visited" forum time would be within the hours. Including myself. I'm sure they had their own reasons to why they hadn't responded beforehand... maybe waiting for all the converses to fly in before jumping in themselves? For me, I saw this forum thread within minutes of it being submitted. Not only was I relatively new to being the leader, but this also relates to the first sentence I implied on this response.

 

 

1 hour ago, Dominic said:

Looking forward to seeing what comes next.

:)

 

 

On 11/9/2020 at 3:10 PM, Trigger said:

very beneficial to GFL. Not only do they complete a monthly newsletter read by hundreds of people, they also complete requests made by the players and staff. Some of those requests include proof-reading announcements, writing up MOTDs, etc.

^^

 

 

Lastly, I wanted to say thank you to @Dominic & @Joshy for leaving very ethical and relevant suggestions and/or opinions to the table for the Writing Team, and especially taking the time to do so. I appreciate the honest and blatant statements; I enjoyed hearing your takes on the whole team's purpose. A lot of the suggestions that you guys left will be taken into consideration. Thank you again!

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3 hours ago, Bue. said:
19 hours ago, Joshy said:

With only 2 people on there (I think) I don't think it does hold a lot of weight; I also don't think the team requires heavy activity on the forums, and so they're probably not commenting on threads like these too often :(

 

Oh, haha. I'm kinda surprised that you would jump to this dismissive claim honestly. @Serenity and @Dragoon are both extremely active when it comes to the GFL forums. I can guarantee that every time you click on their forums profile, the "last visited" forum time would be within the hours. Including myself. I'm sure they had their own reasons to why they hadn't responded beforehand... maybe waiting for all the converses to fly in before jumping in themselves? For me, I saw this forum thread within minutes of it being submitted. Not only was I relatively new to being the leader, but this also relates to the first sentence I implied on this response.

 

 

 

Thanks!  Great discussion!  While we're making suggestions for the writer team...  did you want to add a forum requirement?  I was talking about the requirement and not the persons.  I think the people on the team are great.  I personally don't think we need a forum requirement for the team, but felt like I must have misunderstood something from the requirements when I made my dismissive claim?  It might also help address dominics concerns about the activity of the team?  What do you guys think?

 

https://gflclan.com/forums/topic/65662-all-gfl-writers-requirements-and-expectancies/

 

Quote

1.  - Be nothing but a positive influence towards the other members in the community. Absolutely no toxicity or insulting remark releasing on anyone, regardless of the circumstance.  

 

2.  - Be more than willing to help us build up to any future Newspaper submissions. This is more than expected due to this being the main labor when being a Writer. Just wanted to make this very clear and an option to refer to if it ever became an issue. But of course, If you are asked to pick an announcement topic to write about, I await for you to do so. 

 

3. - I expect you be willing to participate in any writing requests that may be pitched our way. Don't fret if someone happens to claim the request before you, but just remember that it should always be prominent for you to be amenable about helping others when they seek for help in regards to writing. :))

 

4.  - Be interactive with the writing discussion channels. I & we want all the opportunities to get to know you more and better. Any severe lack of activity in the writing chats and/or being unresponsive to pings after a reasonable amount of time may result into a DM from me or a demotion. We want you to stay active and keep us as a prime concern.

 

5.  - Be completely professional, leave all drama-related issues apart from our society. We want nothing but sophisticated and good moral objectives when it comes to your occupation with us. For example, if you have "beef" with another work-member, we suggest that you refrain from causing arguments in any internal or global chat and leave all passive-aggressive remarks out of context. If you have a personal issue that you need to sort out, DMs are always an option. :))

 

6. - You are not to bring any sort of bias intentions into our community. You should have a complete open-mind and be ready to fluctuate your communication style to the different personalities that you'll come across when interacting with the channels- but mostly focus on being honest and courteous when replying to people's applications. Overall, bias personalities are strictly forbidden in any way, shape, or form. :DD 

 

7. - You must find the time to drop a your vote but also followed by a valid reason on why you selected that vote.(-1 or +1 ) on every application that's up for discussion. 

 


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13 hours ago, Joshy said:

It might also help address dominics concerns about the activity of the team?  What do you guys think?

 

I appreciate the concern, but I already added that on the application-rules-list a day or two ago. I must have just forgot to add that to the Rules & Expectancies list, but considered that fixed.

 

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