Announcement: Recent Events

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Varka
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Announcement: Recent Events

Postby Varka » Mon Feb 06, 2012 4:21 pm

Hello everyone,

As many of you will be aware, there has been some pretty serious turmoil in the forums and elsewhere online regarding how forum moderation has been undertaken in the past few days. The result of this has been some unhappy situations between forumgoers and members of staff, as well as a whole pile of misconceptions and disinformation about what's going on, and about how we've been dealing with things.

This post (it's huge, I'm sorry) is a formal announcement, apology and roadmap for the future of the forums, and is an effort to turn recent events into a catalyst of positive change.

First of all, I believe I owe you all an explanation of what happened.
- The first event in this sequence was that Lady~ knowingly and intentionally infringed upon forum rules - most notably, the 'Do not post about problems with your order - please raise a ticket via the helpdesk' rule. This would (and should) have been handled via the regular channels, eg 'warn then ban' via moderation.
- Lady~ was - seperately from posting on the forums - excluded from Bad Dragon as a company (which means our forums, ordering from us as well as our chatroom) due to her continuing track record of poor conduct and verbal abuse of staff via tickets and other contact methods. Unfortunately, as we were unable to reach common ground with her regarding her order, we elected to refund her order in full and let her keep the toys she was raising concern with, and requested that she no longer did business with us as we were unable to accommodate her needs.
- The thread where Lady~ broke the 'Do not post about problems with your order' rule - the 'What is on your mind thread' - was, as a rushed reaction, moved to internal and no shadow topic or explanation of what was happening was left in place. This led to concerns and worries from other members of the community who thought they were about to be banned. This happened because of a breakdown in communication in moderation; policies for undertaking these kinds of actions were not followed. However, things were cleaned up shortly after.
- As a result of this breakdown in communication, another rushed reaction tooked place - namely the suspension of Nemekh and SemJay from forum duties.
- Due to the poor way in which the moderation actions handled, together with the stress and underlying unhappiness about how the Lady~ situation was handled, an outpouring of drama appeared - culminating in the 'where are the mods?' thread.
- As a rushed reaction to this flare-up of drama, two factually correct but poorly delivered statements were made by Kamo on behalf of BD about both the situation and the actions being taken to resolve it. These were written by members of BD staff, and presented by Kamo.
- As a rushed implementation of the actions being taken to resolve the issue (namely, enforcing rules regarding behaviour more stringiently), Tundara was banned under one of the newly implemented rules [which were actually implemented AFTER the post she was banned for was made]. This was, quite naturally, a mistake.
- A poor, but increasingly better job was done in follow-up of these issues, with other members of the BD management double checking and posting facts, explaining things further, and generally attempting to address things by giving details that were not available or not clear in the original statements.
- During this process, considerable effort was being expended behind the scenes in an effort to pick apart what went wrong and why, together with what we SHOULD have done and why.
- In light of the 'postmortem', a proper evaluation of everything was made, and a proper proposal for change going forward was put together.

So, what went wrong?

First and foremost, we as a company made a knee-jerk reaction to a number of issues, which was exascerbated by poor behavior exhibited in a number of posts, as well as the fact all of these things happened pretty much at the same time.

1. We failed to ensure the correct processes for handling out of control threads were followed. [What is on your mind thread move]
2. We suspended two members of our moderation team, and placed someone inexperienced with the outlook required to successfully maintain a forum in their place. [Nemekh and SemJay]
3. We poorly delivered two statements to the forums, and did not provide enough of a balanced emotional backing to them. ('It's not what you say, it's how you say it'). [Kamo's two stickied posts]
4. We rushed the implementation of new guidelines and rules. [Tundara's ban]
5. We did not follow established procedures for the issuing of warnings and subsequent bans [Tundara's ban]
6. We did not put sufficient time or attention into resolving these issues as quickly as possible [happened at 4pm workshop time, then over a weekend].
7. Prominent members who are accountable to the community for how the forums/company operate did not get involved from the outset. [for example, my first post on the issue was on Saturday afternoon, and other members of the board did not start posting until after Kamo's announcement].

In addition, some members of our community chose to undertake disruptive and in some cases obsessive behaviours, which further exascerbated stresses on our end, which contributed to the knee-jerk reactions. Of course, like any other non-rule topic on the forums the specifics of this are endlessly debatable, however it is clear to see what posts and by whom (as well as other off-site actions) contributed significantly to the problems that developed.

However, this is our responsibility as a company that all of this happened. It's our job to ensure that our website and forums are kept well maintained and under control, and that's where we've failed to do what we're meant to.

I'd like to take this opportunity to apologise on behalf of Bad Dragon to all those affected, and to our wider customer base who have had to sit through this - not just on the site and forums, but through various forms of social media. I apologise to everyone who Kamo offended through his words and actions; in many ways he was the messenger who got shot as the actions he undertook were on behalf of Bad Dragon. We also apologise for the inappropriate comments Streak posted on Twitter in direct reaction to recent events, and for the misconstrued-but-still-offensive comments posted by SemJay. Frustrations were running high, and despite formalising a proper social media policy to prevent just this sort of thing happening, we failed to impress the importance and guidelines for the use of social media in a crisis upon our staff members. We also owe an apology to SemJay and Nemekh, who weren't given the time and permissions they needed to do their job and help resolve these issues themselves.

Naturally, we're looking to learn from our mistakes here and improve not only how BD responds to issues, but to improve how the forums operate and are maintained in order to try and avoid stuff like this happening in the first place - and when it does, to prevent it from escalating into issues it has no real right to be.

The job of the Board of Directors of Bad Dragon (of which I am a part) is to balance the needs and demands of the company and the people in it with everything else, both inside and outside of the company. It can be very difficult for us to make conflicting views match; my approach is to try and educate both parties about the other - a lot of the time there's a considerable amount of common ground, and I feel in this situation we created and then perpetuated a disconnect between the community and our staff (primarily through removing the people who acted as that bridge - SemJay and Nemekh).

I need you folks, the forums community, to work with us to try and help bridge this gap - much as the members of our staff will be doing in the coming months. We need to have less of this inflammatory behaviour and 'peanut gallery' mob justice and white knighting at all times, especially when things are changing or going on behind the scenes; in return, we vow we'll stick to our policies better, and provide more transparency and accountabiity for when things change. We're also going to be making an effort to give updates on relevant things which have changed behind the scenes. Bear in mind we're not a small company any more; decisions take time, particularly when they happen out of hours (as a lot of this did), and getting everyone in the same place at the same time to flesh out a decision can be tough.

In light of this, we've come up with a set of proposed changes for the forums, as well as to our internal policies and procedures on how things are dealt with. These include:

- Documenting and following procedures for all forum moderation duties, including the moving of topics, thread lockings, rule violations and so on. This is to ensure the situation being dealt with is handled fairly and consistently.
- No 'knee jerk' reactions in the company, and on the forums. Anything significant, like changing the rules in light of an issue, disciplinary action against staff and so on, will take at least 24hrs to go through the required people and processes (most commonly a formal staff meeting of departments involved and the board of directors).
- Formal announcements will be made by qualified and experienced staff only, and will be done so when they have the time to answer questions and address concerns. This is to ensure that things resolve in a positive, calm manner instead of just exascerbating the situation by providing inadaquate initial presentation and followthrough.
- 'Placeholder' announcements or statements will be made when a formal announcement is incoming, to ensure that people are not left in the dark, and so that things don't get out of hand before a formal announcement is made.
- Additional reminders will be made to all staff regarding acceptable conduct on social media like Twitter - particularly in relation to ongoing events.

As mentioned earlier, the goal of these changes is to make the BD forums a better place, as well as to close the door on a number of known avenues where drama has been known to spring up from [eg, procedural inconsistency].

We're also currently evaluating some of the following things, with a view of implementing some of them in the coming weeks. Note that these are ideas, not set-in-stone things we WILL be doing; no decision has been made on them yet.

- More moderation staff, to ease the load on existing moderators and to ensure better coverage for day-to-day issues.
- More prominent display of the forum rules, possibly as a 'I agree and have read the rules' page to click through in order to log in
- A revisitation of our current forum rules, and a firming up of numerous sections to make them more proactive against behaviour which has a track record of causing or exascerbating issues of all kinds.
- Current plans for rules include:
- Posts must not needlessly perpetuate drama (aka, raise or complain about the same issue over and over again).
- Posts must not be inflammatory, abusive or contain personal attacks.
- All criticism posted must be constructive.
- A tiered 'timed exclusion' system for ban escalation; 24hr exclusion, 72hr exclusion, permanent exclusion.
- A 'hide flaming posts' system, which would give the opportunity for people to downvote disruptive or offensive comments so people can choose not to see them (possibly by default, with a 'this post was hidden because...' message with a link to show it).
- A continuation of our moderation staff proactively telling users 'You shouldn't be doing this' before things get out of hand, and correcting disruptive behaviour before handing out bans. This is to ensure that people are given a fair chance to self-correct, while ensuring those who knowingly or repeatedly flaunt the rules either correct their behaviour or are excluded.
- A permanent record for each and every forum user, to improve the tracking of past violations and warnings. This will make warnings and bans fairer and more consistent, as other mods will be able to see past infractions instead of it happening via memory.
- A 3-5 question multiple-choice test, which users will need to pass in order to have their account reactivated after a ban
- When a thread is locked due to a rule violation, a moderator will post an explanation of why the thread was locked and details of the specific rule violated in a final post before it's locked.
- A new 'order feedback' forum, where people can post (positively and negatively) about their experiences ordering from BD. Threads will be limited to posts from the original poster and BD representatives only, and is intended to work a lot like GetSatisfaction.com. The focus will remain on sharing ordering experiences, as opposed to resolving issues - so ongoing or new issues will still be handled via the correct channels (ie, tickets).


So once again, we're sorry this happened - but are committed to turning this into a positive experience for the betterment of everyone.

We welcome all comments and feedback and I'll be answering questions posted in this thread, but would like to ask people to try and keep things succinct and directly related to the topic at hand, to make it easier to manage, and for others to read through this thread.

Thank you all <3

Varka
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Re: Announcement: Recent Events

Postby Nemekh » Mon Feb 06, 2012 4:30 pm

Hey everyone,

I wanted to start with thanking members of our community with your messages of support over the sudden changes that arose. In a time that felt stressful they brought me comfort and helped center me as the days went by.

The last few days has been I hope an eye opening experience for staff and I; the means of which the initial resolutions unfurled made me feel both saddened and disappointed in the way BD's management chose to intervene, almost blindly and too suddenly. Mistakes were made that could have been prevented with stepping back, prudence and patience, but I feel that in many ways they were almost a necessity to learn from them.

I am very glad however that we are treating this as a constructive learning experience - particularly with helping everyone to grow their own understanding and appreciation of the importance of constructively and maturely handling issues that arise. So with that, I would like our community of customers, users and staff (official and voluntary) to work together to make things count; to not return to 'how things were' many years ago, or even recently, but to bring our forums to heights that we have still yet to reach. Only through mutual guidance, understanding and cooperation can that be done.

Thanks all <3

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Re: Announcement: Recent Events

Postby SemJay » Mon Feb 06, 2012 4:33 pm

I just wanted to write you guys a little something about what's been going on in my world.

In late October of 2011 I quietly resigned from my role of Forums Manager, leaving the job to Nemekh. I didn't want to make a big deal out of it because I didn't want you guys to think their was anything wrong with me (especially considering what happened earlier in the month).

The decision to step aside was based on several factors, but mainly because running my department (Customer Service) left no time to efficiently moderate the forums. In the time that I have taken over both roles (Forums and Customer Service) have grown tremendously.

When I first took over tickets I had about as many tickets in a one to two week period that we now get in a day or two. The job became too much for one person and that is why Zin moved from the Shipping Department to Customer Service and why Mohr was hired on. I also went from working from home to coming into the shop every single weekday (and trust me when I say it's a really long drive!!). That combined the help of my awesome staff have allowed us to really get a handle on tickets and other customer service issues.

The Customer Service Department has also absorbed the Returns Department, which was originally just run by Kamo alone, and we're hoping that the changes we've made will allow issues to resolved in a more timely matter. So yes, a lot has happened since October, and I believe that it is all of it is for the best.

The decision on Friday to deactivate my account while all this was going on was completely voluntary. I hold no hard feelings against my fellow managers or the board for choosing to do this. I feel like there is much to be desired when it comes to how this whole situation went down and that we should all learn from our mistakes (both the company and the forum goers). I hope that in the future you will allow us to all grow together. I have an AWESOME Customer Service team (Seriously, Zin, Mohr and myself are some the nicest, and most fun people you'll ever meet!) that work their butts off to give you the best experience Bad Dragon has to offer.

I ask that you treat us all with kindness and I promise you will receive nothing but the same in return. We want to resolve any issues you may have with an order in a timely matter because we care about your satisfaction and because we love the company we work for.

If you ever have an issue that you feel was not handled accordingly, please feel free to contact me directly ([email protected]) with as much information as possible and I will make sure the issue is resolved properly.

So I will continue my "Forum Sabbatical" so I can continue to manage and grow the Customer Service Department. It's bittersweet since the Forums were where I first started within the company, but I know it's for the best. If you need to get a hold of me, please feel free to email me :)

Much Love,

SemJay
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Re: Announcement: Recent Events

Postby TwinArmageddons » Mon Feb 06, 2012 4:35 pm

So are Tundara and Lady~ getting unbanned or not?

I didn't see anything to the effect of that happening which is the thing on which a lot of people's hopes are lying on. I can almost guarantee you guys'll be losing business if it doesn't happen.


I can't post anything else other than that main number-one concern right now because I'm about to go to class but when I get home I promise my comments will be more than just the loud request of them to come back ( especially since requesting someone to leave YOU guys because YOU could not reach things to a standard which shouldn't be fought for but expected; the bar at which you guys should aspire to reach ).

I'll post more when I get home aughkdfjghfkjbedbfb :psyduck:


Edit: I'm also going to mention that Lady is NOT the only person who posts on the forums about mishaps with their orders. She is one of MANY who have mentioned things about botched orders in the past; she's just the only one you guys have noticed.

You should still give her the option to come back, especially with these new policies in place ( warn, temp ban temp ban full ban ). I don't even know if she got a warning that this would happen ( from what I've heard she didn't ).

okay leaving now for realsies.
Last edited by TwinArmageddons on Mon Feb 06, 2012 4:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Announcement: Recent Events

Postby aurora » Mon Feb 06, 2012 4:38 pm

seems fine. As someone who has helped run a forum / website with more then 400 people on at any given time, and half of those people don't even speak english, i know first hand that deleting topics / moving them out of sight is never good. i like the idea of just posting before locking why its being locked so everyone can see, and this is how its done in very large forums (ubuntuforums.org comes to mind)


as for additional moderators, you guys do have like 5 people who are 'moderators' for irc who pretty much sit around doing nothing all day, since irc rarely has any problems. hint hint~
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Re: Announcement: Recent Events

Postby Shandrel » Mon Feb 06, 2012 4:38 pm

I am still unsure of how, this Mod situation is dealt with, Will Nem be returning in a capacity? I understand Sema has voluntarily moved on to solely customer service and tickets...

And really, what is being done about Tundara? and Lady? Obviously, there will be no budging on Lady. But Tundara was banned for a rule she knew nothing about... that no one, knew anything about.
Last edited by Shandrel on Mon Feb 06, 2012 4:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Announcement: Recent Events

Postby Saultion » Mon Feb 06, 2012 4:44 pm

I see where its going an I do see where some are going to have issues with some of the possible changes such as the 3-5 question test to have their account reactivated which I see as fair in my opinion because if you cannot answer a few questions honestly an without getting hostile there is no need to have the account reactivated.

I do agree on the more moderators to relieve some of the strain on the current members of the moderator team to make it more flexible.

The tierd level of displinary action is also good to have so not to have another issue like recent events with the instant bans, but I also see where people are also going to have problems with the perma record due to the fact people will start to complain that it will seem more like a prison where everything they say an do will be under scrutiny and will have to walk on egg shells, this will need to be thought out alittle more in my opinion to avoid further flames from being rekindled.
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Re: Announcement: Recent Events

Postby bladejtr » Mon Feb 06, 2012 4:49 pm

One thing regarding the permanent record deal, while I personally like the idea, some sort of forgiveness if you go long enough without causing problems might be beneficial.

Aside from that, I like to see that this is being handled and I hope that this forum continues improving and will be a great place for everyone to hand out on that wants to do so.
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Re: Announcement: Recent Events

Postby SilentRaven » Mon Feb 06, 2012 4:49 pm

Saultion wrote:The tierd level of displinary action is also good to have so not to have another issue like recent events with the instant bans, but I also see where people are also going to have problems with the perma record due to the fact people will start to complain that it will seem more like a prison where everything they say an do will be under scrutiny and will have to walk on egg shells, this will need to be thought out alittle more in my opinion to avoid further flames from being rekindled.



Don't some sites remove the disciplinary actions after a certain period of time? Example: If someone got a 24 hour "time-out", but everything was fine for, say, 3 months (just an example span), that record would be removed? In effect, it gives a fresh start. After all, sometimes people do loose control when they don't intend to.
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Re: Announcement: Recent Events

Postby River » Mon Feb 06, 2012 4:49 pm

A lot of this seems like band-aid measures to me. Most of the time people take to the forums after the ticketing system has failed them. Are you going to do anything about that side of the issue?

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Re: Announcement: Recent Events

Postby Alara » Mon Feb 06, 2012 4:53 pm

So, with all that said, I have a question: Will Tundara be unbanned? That person didn't do anything wrong and there were no rules stating that "I'm leaving bad dragon" posts were against the rules. she broke a rule that hadn't been made yet and therefore should be taken back.

Also, I read the 'offending' posts by lady and am a friend of hers, and I can assure you she did no such thing as "continually harass" BD staff or start drama. Every previous time she got a wrong order (it's happened more than once) she went through the proper channels as requested, and her issues were not handled properly (in the eyes of a passerby.) furthermore, the post in which she broke the rules wasn't inflamatory at all. IT was basically: "They dun goof'd, I am not happy because this has happened before." She even ended it saying she wasn't looking to cause drama, she was venting because she was upset and she'd already gone through the proper channels to get it fixed.

Regardless of bad Dragon assuming she was flaming, she was doing what ANY customer would do in her position, and regardless of her demeanour towards this one issue, she still is a repeat customer who praises BD's quality work at every opportunity. By cutting her off, it's not only a PR blunder but a stupid, stupid move financially as she'd likely buy more from you in the future. If this is how BD treats its customers it's no wonder drama like this flares up so easily.

Also, from what I Gathered from the "What happened" section of the statement, Semjay messed up (I don't think she did this time), Nemekh messed up (He didn't do anything wrong either), Kamo messed up (even just as the messenger delivering BD's news), Bagheera messed up by flaming people and being condescending....and all that's okay becuase you're 'still learning'. Meanwhile Tundara remains banned even though she wasn't flaming anyone and broke rule she couldn't have known existed due to the fact that it didn't exist at the time.

You need to do two things:

1 - Un ban Tundara. Seriously. She did nothing wrong.
2 - While I can understand banning Lady from the FORUMS (I don't agree, but I understand), unban her from ordering from you guys becuase seriously, that's stupid from both a PR perspective and a financial perspective. If you start banning people for complaining about you guys fucking up their orders, well...I have nothing more to say on the matter. She wasn't abrasive, she wasn't rude, she wasn't inflammatory, she was venting. She broke a rule, sure, but she's not "a continuing source of drama" or anything like that. If you think she was, then you're flat out wrong.
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Re: Announcement: Recent Events

Postby Saultion » Mon Feb 06, 2012 4:53 pm

SilentRaven wrote:
Saultion wrote:The tierd level of displinary action is also good to have so not to have another issue like recent events with the instant bans, but I also see where people are also going to have problems with the perma record due to the fact people will start to complain that it will seem more like a prison where everything they say an do will be under scrutiny and will have to walk on egg shells, this will need to be thought out alittle more in my opinion to avoid further flames from being rekindled.



Don't some sites remove the disciplinary actions after a certain period of time? Example: If someone got a 24 hour "time-out", but everything was fine for, say, 3 months (just an example span), that record would be removed? In effect, it gives a fresh start. After all, sometimes people do loose control when they don't intend to.


Yes some do remove them from their record if they are good for a specific period of time, but with the possibility of the perma record here it maybe different such as it may take a year to remove one of your infractions but I cannot make that type of answer since I am not on the staff this will be left up to them.
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Re: Announcement: Recent Events

Postby Saultion » Mon Feb 06, 2012 5:02 pm

Alara wrote:So, with all that said, I have a question: Will Tundara be unbanned? That person didn't do anything wrong and there were no rules stating that "I'm leaving bad dragon" posts were against the rules. she broke a rule that hadn't been made yet and therefore should be taken back.

Also, I read the 'offending' posts by lady and am a friend of hers, and I can assure you she did no such thing as "continually harass" BD staff or start drama. Every previous time she got a wrong order (it's happened more than once) she went through the proper channels as requested, and her issues were not handled properly (in the eyes of a passerby.) furthermore, the post in which she broke the rules wasn't inflamatory at all. IT was basically: "They dun goof'd, I am not happy because this has happened before." She even ended it saying she wasn't looking to cause drama, she was venting because she was upset and she'd already gone through the proper channels to get it fixed.

Regardless of bad Dragon assuming she was flaming, she was doing what ANY customer would do in her position, and regardless of her demeanour towards this one issue, she still is a repeat customer who praises BD's quality work at every opportunity. By cutting her off, it's not only a PR blunder but a stupid, stupid move financially as she'd likely buy more from you in the future. If this is how BD treats its customers it's no wonder drama like this flares up so easily.

Also, from what I Gathered from the "What happened" section of the statement, Semjay messed up (I don't think she did this time), Nemekh messed up (He didn't do anything wrong either), Kamo messed up (even just as the messenger delivering BD's news), Bagheera messed up by flaming people and being condescending....and all that's okay becuase you're 'still learning'. Meanwhile Tundara remains banned even though she wasn't flaming anyone and broke rule she couldn't have known existed due to the fact that it didn't exist at the time.

You need to do two things:

1 - Un ban Tundara. Seriously. She did nothing wrong.
2 - While I can understand banning Lady from the FORUMS (I don't agree, but I understand), unban her from ordering from you guys becuase seriously, that's stupid from both a PR perspective and a financial perspective. If you start banning people for complaining about you guys fucking up their orders, well...I have nothing more to say on the matter. She wasn't abrasive, she wasn't rude, she wasn't inflammatory, she was venting. She broke a rule, sure, but she's not "a continuing source of drama" or anything like that. If you think she was, then you're flat out wrong.


No offense, but I do not think you have seen every part of the conversation that went on between the staff an Lady regarding her order, I am not saying Lady is wrong or the staff since I am not privied to either side of the story and is none of my business. Yes some if not most have had a hiccup in our orders an it does make us mad but we still have to abide by the forum rules an follow the proper channels to get things straightened out not just go an vent in the forums which in turns detours new members to the forum and customers.
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Re: Announcement: Recent Events

Postby Alara » Mon Feb 06, 2012 5:05 pm

Saultion wrote:
Alara wrote:So, with all that said, I have a question: Will Tundara be unbanned? That person didn't do anything wrong and there were no rules stating that "I'm leaving bad dragon" posts were against the rules. she broke a rule that hadn't been made yet and therefore should be taken back.

Also, I read the 'offending' posts by lady and am a friend of hers, and I can assure you she did no such thing as "continually harass" BD staff or start drama. Every previous time she got a wrong order (it's happened more than once) she went through the proper channels as requested, and her issues were not handled properly (in the eyes of a passerby.) furthermore, the post in which she broke the rules wasn't inflamatory at all. IT was basically: "They dun goof'd, I am not happy because this has happened before." She even ended it saying she wasn't looking to cause drama, she was venting because she was upset and she'd already gone through the proper channels to get it fixed.

Regardless of bad Dragon assuming she was flaming, she was doing what ANY customer would do in her position, and regardless of her demeanour towards this one issue, she still is a repeat customer who praises BD's quality work at every opportunity. By cutting her off, it's not only a PR blunder but a stupid, stupid move financially as she'd likely buy more from you in the future. If this is how BD treats its customers it's no wonder drama like this flares up so easily.

Also, from what I Gathered from the "What happened" section of the statement, Semjay messed up (I don't think she did this time), Nemekh messed up (He didn't do anything wrong either), Kamo messed up (even just as the messenger delivering BD's news), Bagheera messed up by flaming people and being condescending....and all that's okay becuase you're 'still learning'. Meanwhile Tundara remains banned even though she wasn't flaming anyone and broke rule she couldn't have known existed due to the fact that it didn't exist at the time.

You need to do two things:

1 - Un ban Tundara. Seriously. She did nothing wrong.
2 - While I can understand banning Lady from the FORUMS (I don't agree, but I understand), unban her from ordering from you guys becuase seriously, that's stupid from both a PR perspective and a financial perspective. If you start banning people for complaining about you guys fucking up their orders, well...I have nothing more to say on the matter. She wasn't abrasive, she wasn't rude, she wasn't inflammatory, she was venting. She broke a rule, sure, but she's not "a continuing source of drama" or anything like that. If you think she was, then you're flat out wrong.


No offense, but I do not think you have seen every part of the conversation that went on between the staff an Lady regarding her order, I am not saying Lady is wrong or the staff since I am not privied to either side of the story and is none of my business. Yes some if not most have had a hiccup in our orders an it does make us mad but we still have to abide by the forum rules an follow the proper channels to get things straightened out not just go an vent in the forums which in turns detours new members to the forum and customers.


yes I have, pages and pages of emails back and forth, Ticket screenshots, screenshots of the thread before it was taken down. if there's anything I haven't seen, I'd be amazed.

I wouldn't make such a claim lightly. Don't make assumptions.

Also, as it turns out Tundara was unbanned, so I rescind that part of my comment, even though Varka mentioned nothing about rectifying mistakes such as that.
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Re: Announcement: Recent Events

Postby bladejtr » Mon Feb 06, 2012 5:06 pm

Saultion wrote:
No offense, but I do not think you have seen every part of the conversation that went on between the staff an Lady regarding her order, I am not saying Lady is wrong or the staff since I am not privied to either side of the story and is none of my business. Yes some if not most have had a hiccup in our orders an it does make us mad but we still have to abide by the forum rules an follow the proper channels to get things straightened out not just go an vent in the forums which in turns detours new members to the forum and customers.

I would recommend avoiding these type of posts, disagreeing with others is fine, but posting it invites arguments to start.
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Re: Announcement: Recent Events

Postby Shandrel » Mon Feb 06, 2012 5:07 pm

As for Lady, and my veiwpoint.
I read nothing. All i know, is that in My eyes, and given the new rules.. she should be given one more chance. We are starting a new system.. so lets start a new system. Have everyone at zero... and go from there. Obviously if she is abusive to staff, well, then she will be judged according to the new rules. If not, then there is no reason she should be shut out of one of her favorite places...

But that is my personal viewpoint.

I still want to know what is to be done about the Mods, and Tundara, as well as When, will we get these new rules?
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Re: Announcement: Recent Events

Postby dappled » Mon Feb 06, 2012 5:08 pm

Questions I have:
1. Nemekh, I can't tell from your comment whether or not you will be returning to the forums, even as a part time mod. Will you be? Or are you now strictly behind-the-scenes work only?
2. Will the procedures given be followed now? Will Tundara's and Lady's accounts be reinstated- given that it has probably been well over 72 hours since they were banned- and will there be a note made of what level they are at? (I realise that this may apply more to Tundara than Lady~) (And also realise at this point that Tundara's account has been unbanned)
3. I would like to ask as well- Varka, have you actually read the exchange between Lady~ and Kamo? It may seem like an odd question, but I would like to know your personal thoughts on it. Surely you guys deal with irate customers that are upset over wrong orders every day? What makes her case so different? As a side note, I read the exchange between them, and found myself aghast at the way you refused to help a customer who had so obviously gotten a wrong order- when Sema had already offered help!
4. Is it too much to ask for a public apology from Streak over his comments? Surely everyone saw how offensive it was.

My personal thoughts on this:
Unfortunately, whilst most of this announcement takes the lighter we're-striding-forwards tone, there are some points at which I feel you may be scapegoating those customers on the forums. This is a personal opinion though. However, I do thank you for this announcement. Whilst I acknowledge that the tendency of the forums is to jump on drama, it is also prudent to realise that it is not always unwarranted. Especially with the removal of Nemekh and Semjay from the moderation team so quickly, and an inflammatory announcement made- which fully placed the blame on Lady~ for everything. Which obviously, left her friends feeling that this was unfair and wanted to make the truth heard. This is why there was so much drama- Lady~ did not ask for the threads and posts to be made about her, despite other suggestions. It's these untrue suggestions that people were combatting.

I apologise if my comment has come across as attacking you guys, just please realise that your version of things is not always correct and assumptions should not be made. On this note, if I can be provided evidence to say that Lady~ liked to abuse the staff, then I will quite happily about turn on my dim view of her ban from involvement with the company.

Thank you for taking the time to read this, should you read it.
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Re: Announcement: Recent Events

Postby Tooki » Mon Feb 06, 2012 5:08 pm

Alara wrote:Stuff.


They removed you from the company and banned you from the forums for a reason, Runa.

Your changes sound good Varka. I hope the Tundara and Lady issue is resolved to satisfaction shortly.
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Re: Announcement: Recent Events

Postby JustSomeGuy » Mon Feb 06, 2012 5:09 pm

My 2 cents: you are a company that makes a product, that product is not forums. delete the forum and focus on the product. use your resources for production and customer service.
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Re: Announcement: Recent Events

Postby Varka » Mon Feb 06, 2012 5:10 pm

TwinArmageddons wrote:So are Tundara and Lady~ getting unbanned or not?


Shandrel wrote:And really, what is being done about Tundara? and Lady? Obviously, there will be no budging on Lady. But Tundara was banned for a rule she knew nothing about... that no one, knew anything about.


Alara wrote:So, with all that said, I have a question: Will Tundara be unbanned?


I've just unbanned Tundara; Lady~ is unfortunately not going to be unbanned.


TwinArmageddons wrote:Edit: I'm also going to mention that Lady is NOT the only person who posts on the forums about mishaps with their orders. She is one of MANY who have mentioned things about botched orders in the past; she's just the only one you guys have noticed.

Yes; I tend to wind up hearing about a lot of the botched orders (as I need to make sure it's not the system I wrote causing them, and to try and find ways of avoiding them in future), and she's by far not the only one we botch up orders for. The real issue was her conduct; it had nothing to do with us botching up her order.

TwinArmageddons wrote:You should still give her the option to come back, especially with these new policies in place ( warn, temp ban temp ban full ban ). I don't even know if she got a warning that this would happen ( from what I've heard she didn't ).

Our policies regarding abuse of staff via tickets and emails have not changed; as such it's important to remember she's banned from Bad Dragon as a whole, not just the forums. That decision transcends the specifics of the forum rules; which is why we're not taking action against her because of her breaking the forum rules.


Shandrel wrote:I am still unsure of how, this Mod situation is dealt with, Will Nem be returning in a capacity? I understand Sema has voluntarily moved on to solely customer service and tickets...

It is expected that, once we've had a chance to re-evaluate our forums policy and how we run things, together with the internal situation which led to this, that Nemekh will be returning to moderation. This is however not decided for sure; we still have yet to meet about this (one 3-hour meeting a day is enough for me :psyduck:)

bladejtr wrote:One thing regarding the permanent record deal, while I personally like the idea, some sort of forgiveness if you go long enough without causing problems might be beneficial.


SilentRaven wrote:Don't some sites remove the disciplinary actions after a certain period of time? Example: If someone got a 24 hour "time-out", but everything was fine for, say, 3 months (just an example span), that record would be removed? In effect, it gives a fresh start. After all, sometimes people do loose control when they don't intend to.


River wrote:A lot of this seems like band-aid measures to me. Most of the time people take to the forums after the ticketing system has failed them. Are you going to do anything about that side of the issue?

- Faster responses
- Not copy-pasting the same response twice to the same person <-- this one happens a lot and is infuriating.


We've done a lot to improve customer service via the ticketing system in recent months, however yes we will be keeping a closer eye on customer service goals (time to answer ticket, actually reading the ticket history / attention to detail, etc).
I anticipate that they'll be a 'expiration' on issues, whereby after a certain period of time we don't count those previous strikes against you when doing judgements. Obviously it'd need to be a sensible time period (like a year, for example) in order to work, but that's a refinement of the idea which we'll be taking on board. :D

Alara wrote:Also, I read the 'offending' posts by lady and am a friend of hers, and I can assure you she did no such thing as "continually harass" BD staff or start drama. Every previous time she got a wrong order (it's happened more than once) she went through the proper channels as requested, and her issues were not handled properly (in the eyes of a passerby.) furthermore, the post in which she broke the rules wasn't inflamatory at all. IT was basically: "They dun goof'd, I am not happy because this has happened before." She even ended it saying she wasn't looking to cause drama, she was venting because she was upset and she'd already gone through the proper channels to get it fixed.

Regardless of bad Dragon assuming she was flaming, she was doing what ANY customer would do in her position, and regardless of her demeanour towards this one issue, she still is a repeat customer who praises BD's quality work at every opportunity. By cutting her off, it's not only a PR blunder but a stupid, stupid move financially as she'd likely buy more from you in the future. If this is how BD treats its customers it's no wonder drama like this flares up so easily.

Your views have been noted, however please also understand that while we would really like to lay out the full details of all the conduct (via tickets, emails and other methods - not just the forums) which led to her exclusion from Bad Dragon, due to customer confidentiality we are unfortunately not able to - and that having seen all of these emails and tickets, my personal opinion differs substantially to yours. This decision was, however, not up to me - it was up to the board of directors of which I am a member, and it was decided that for the good of the company and for all our customers we needed to put up our hands, and say 'Sorry, we can't fulfill your needs'. This has nothing to do with the forum rules; it has to do with acceptable conduct as a customer contacting our employees.
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