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Old May 28th, 2011 (2:09 PM). Edited May 28th, 2011 by Vrai.
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Vrai Vrai is offline
can you feel my heart?
Join Date: Jun 2008
Age: 24
Gender: Male
Nature: Adamant
Posts: 2,896
I'm going to lay it out here. Activity in S&M sucks. It's awful, and every "regular" here knows it.

ps. sorry for the wall of text. there's a tl;dr version at the end but read everything anyway

There's something intimidating about the place. Whether it's the fact that we spam competitive jargon or the reputation it earned way back when it was Flameland, no one is eager to post here unless they know the basics of battling anyway. I've been getting active in the PC IRC lately as well as looking at the DCC and just studying people in general and I see a lot of potential. There are actually surprisingly a lot of people who are at the very least interested in S&M and competitive battling. But why won't they post here? This is what we're going to figure out. We're going to make this forum alive like it was in 2007 (I wasn't here but hey, every oldhag here keeps talking about how awesome it was). It starts with us, the people who can consider themselves a "regular" of our PO server and our forum.

Anti made a thread on this before. You don't have to read through all of it, but the general gist of it was "Activity sucks. We'll fix it by being nicer and etc.!!" and sure, that's cool. Did we ever really get anything done by being nicer? Did we ever actually end up being nicer? Something about this thread in particular I wanted to point out: this post and this post. Do note that both of those people became a part of our tutoring program (the most recent one) and then they both ended up being inactive and not participating much. That might've been the fault of the program in general but still... People fear S&M. :/

We need to change that. We need people to see that "hey! people here aren't all complete jerks!" and "hey! you can actually get decent at battling by following the people's advice here!"

"We" refers to everyone, btw. All of you regulars. Yeah, I'll call all of you out: Karpman, Aero, Spinosaurus, Skip Shot, Opposite Day, dragonomega, Syndrome, Wolflare, everyone that comes on PO at all. Even TwilightBlade, Kaori and Luke; yeah, I know you guys don't battle much and/or are busy whatever but that's no reason why you can't at least help a little with S&M. The only reliable, recurring posters in ANY rate-my-team thread lately have been myself, Dark Azelf, and PlatinumDude. That really sucks. Do you want a comparison for how active this main forum of S&M is? How active our raters are?

In-Game Teams is more active than Strategies and Movesets' main forum.

Seriously. It is. Does anyone else realize how terrible that is? :/

Why don't our regulars rate? We can't rely on D_A and then two other people to rate people's teams and then expect our activity level to rise. Honestly! Why don't you rate? I really don't care at all how bad you think you are. The expectations of me and the rest of the forum of you "regulars" is now raised: I expect to start seeing rates and teams out of ALL of you. If your rate is bad, who cares? D_A or myself will come by and mention something politely about your rate and help nudge you in the right direction. This forum isn't just going to get active on its own, guys. You, the presiding regulars, have to actually post in the forum, lol. I expect to see your posts.

This is how we will make this forum active again: we will post in it.

Such a brilliant idea, huh? ;) Really, though, throw all of your bias and any fear of posting aside and please, please post. If you feel like you can say something or you notice anything about a team at all just say it! You don't have to make a complete rate or change everything in someone's team (read: You don't have to make tl;dr rates like this). If you have a suggestion post it and then we will go from there.

Really, the regulars posting is what's going to make this forum active again. I can't say it enough. Aero just brought up to me the difference between saying "oh I'll start posting" and actually doing it. The thing is, what's the big difference? It's not like you have to write an essay on everything. You are not obligated to point out every flaw in their team. If you do that, it feels like a chore and that certainly won't make you want to rate any more.

This thread is the very epitome of what I envision S&M becoming, but hopefully with more other people rating and posting and hopefully the OP updating their post more. A decent RMT thread at this point in time seems to go like this:

-- OP posts team
-- someone rates it, pointing out a flaw or two
-- D_A rates it
-- no one else rates it because it feels like D_A covered everything
-- OP posts again talking about changes
-- thread dies

-- OP posts team
-- someone rates it, pointing out a flaw or two
-- someone else rates it in-depth, tanking out exactly what's wrong with each moveset etc
-- OP posts again talking about changes
-- thread dies
Now, that sucks. It's like those OVP threads, where a topic is posted and everyone just says what they say and moves on. I want to think of a RMT thread more like a discussion thread, with everyone who rates kind of tinkering around with everyone else's ideas. A RMT thread should not have four or five posts - I'd much rather see a thread with 20+ posts that just have people making simple nitpicks on each other's rates and on the team, and with people actually responding to the changes. This of course requires that we have good, active RMT posters but it's not like the supply of RMTs will ever die out. There might be a dud or two but honestly I really want to see everyone discuss a team in a RMT thread rather than just take it and tear it apart. You are not obligated to rate an entire team, nor do I want you to do that because it limits the opportunities for other people to post.

The way for us to get S&M active is to have an inspired group of regulars who are willing to discuss teams with RMT posters on the main forum. It's not closed to one side or the other. If we maintain a kind, consistent amount of effort to post and keep the teams here flowing then we WILL see more activity, I can tell you that.

We've also got to make the most out of the upcoming tutor program. I expect to see all of you regulars there and available to help out because that's going to be the biggest draw for people to start coming here. If we can help people consciously realize that "Hey! I'm not going to get flamed for posting a team of Delibirds here!" then we WILL have more activity. If we can teach people how to battle competitively and we can gather interest through this class-tutoring program then the community will literally boom with activity. We just need to maintain a lot of active regulars in the forum to start with and we need to start now.

We don't flame here any more and we're going to encourage rating from everyone, good rates or bad because even bad rates can be corrected to make everyone better. That's all that it boils down to.

Ideas? Suggestions? Thoughts on what I've said? Please, fire away. We're going to make S&M active and awesome again.