Changes in response to age related feedback
 
 

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Changes in response to age related feedback

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        05-29-2011, 09:16 PM
      #1
    Super Moderator
    Changes in response to age related feedback

    Hi everyone,

    While we make every effort to keep the Horse Forum family friendly, we have also always maintained that the community is for adults and young people who can conduct themselves maturely first and foremost. To that end, we have made several changes in response to members' recent feedback about the participation of younger members.

    In a recent poll, roughly 2/3 of respondents indicated that they would like to see the Horse Forum be a community for members ages 15 and up. Members' chief complaints seemed to be that they would often find trivial or even nonsensical replies from younger members in threads warranting just the opposite, as well as threads of that nature started by younger members in substantive forums. The 1/3 of the community that did not want to see the age limit raised did not want to see younger members miss out on the opportunity to learn from and otherwise benefit from the experience of older, more experienced members, or to lose access to the less substantive forums many younger members enjoy. After giving everyone's feedback a lot of thought, we have come up with a solution that we believe addresses everyone's concerns in the least restrictive way possible.

    1) Members who would like to see the Horse Forum be a community for members ages 15 and up can now effectively achieve just that by changing a setting in their User CP.

    Simply visit your User CP, select Edit Details from the lefthand column, and set "Show threads started by members under 15" to "No", and threads by members under 15 (13 and 14 year olds) will no longer appear in forum listings, New Post searches, or other search results. Of course, that alone would not address the issue of members under 15 making unsubstantive replies in other members' threads in substantive forums. Therefore,

    2) Members under 15 (13 and 14 year olds) can start threads in any forum (except the Saloon), and can add replies to their own threads as often as they like, but cannot reply to other members' threads in substantive forums.

    Members who ask non-superficial questions or begin non-superficial discussions want non-superficial replies, and that goes for members under 15 as well. The typical 13 or 14 year old simply lacks the experience to provide the types of substantive replies members start their threads in order to receive, and unfortunately often lack the maturity to recognize as much.


    In addition to being able to start a thread in any forum they want to and being able to reply in their own threads in substantive forums, members under 15 can reply to any thread in following forums:
    • Announcements
    • Horse Pictures
    • Horse Videos
    • Horse Artwork
    • Art Requests
    • Horse Contests
    • Horse Stories and Poems
    • Famous Horses
    • Meet the Community
    • Member Journals
    • Horse Memorials
    • Meet the Community
    • Off Topic Discussion
    • Hobbies
    • Jokes and Funnies
    • Teen Talk
    • Games
    • Music, Movies, and TV
    • Technology
    • Other Pets
    • Using the horse forum
    • Suggestions
    This compromise allows members who do not want to see threads or posts by members under 15 to avoid them completely, while at the same time addressing the chief concerns about raising the community's age requirement to 15; it allows members under 15 to continue to start threads in any forum they want to and receive the benefit of input from older, more experienced horseman who haven't chosen to opt out of seeing threads started by members under 15, and allows members under 15 to continue posting in any threads they want in less substantive areas of the site where members under 15 tend to participate the most.

    While members under 15 will undoubtedly be less than thrilled with being unable to reply to other members' threads in substantive areas of the site, we hope they will recognize the lengths we have gone to in order to address the concerns of the overwhelming majority of the community while at the same time ensuring they can continue to participate meaningfully. Again, if you are under 15 but believe you warrant an exemption because you are able to make substantive contributions to other members' threads on account of your experience and maturity, please start a thread in the Talk to the Team forum.

    3) Members can now specify which forums they want to see appear in their New Posts list and exclude the ones they don't.

    Members who want to exclude all threads from specific forums from appearing in their New posts lists can now do so by visiting Edit Options from their User CP and scrolling down to where it says 'Exclude forums from "Get New Posts"'. For example, if a member did not want their New Posts search to include threads and posts from the Teen Talk or Art Requests forum, they can now exclude those forums.

    Finally,

    4) Members now must be at least 13 years old to register, without exception.

    Our previous policy was to allow members we discovered to be under 13 to continue participating so long as we received a parent's consent, unless/until they proved too immature. However, by the time it became evident they were too immature, the proof was often scattered throughout the forum by way of a member's posts, and it likely had a deleterious impact on members' perceptions and/or enjoyment of the community. Children under 13 are more than welcome to read and learn from threads as guests, but they will have to wait until they are 13 to register.

    Our hope is that these 4 changes result in even more of the intelligent horse related discussion the majority of members come here for, and enhance everyone's experience at the Horse Forum as a result.

    Sincerely,
    Mike
    The Horse Forum Team
         
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        05-29-2011, 09:30 PM
      #2
    Green Broke
    I have changed the settings, but still get a post by a member under 15 in "New Posts".
         
        05-29-2011, 09:32 PM
      #3
    Super Moderator
    The changes are not retroactive, VelvetsAB, so if any member under 15 replied to a thread before these changes were implemented, that post would show up in your New Posts list. Going forward, since members under 15 can no longer reply to other members' threads in substantive forums, you should not see any new posts by members under 15 in threads in substantive forums in your New Posts list or elsewhere.

    To be sure, you should no longer see any threads started by members under 15 appearing in your New Posts list, forum listings, or other search results. Can you please confirm that that is the case?
         
        05-29-2011, 09:36 PM
      #4
    Started
    Mike just wondering about not being able to reply to certain things when your under 15?

    I noticed a lot there that I usually reply too and I have had a lot of people say im rather mature for my age and I was wondering about that rule of not being able to reply to those forums. I find that unfair.
         
        05-29-2011, 09:48 PM
      #5
    Green Broke
    Just refreshed new posts list, and it was still there (of course until I clicked on it). It was a new thread started at 8:12 this evening.
         
        05-29-2011, 09:59 PM
      #6
    Super Moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by VelvetsAB
    Just refreshed new posts list, and it was still there (of course until I clicked on it). It was a new thread started at 8:12 this evening.
    Was the thread itself started by a member under 15? If so, and if you selected "No" for "Show threads started by members under 15" in your User CP, you should not be seeing it. In that case, please pm me a link to the thread.

    If you are talking about a thread that was started by a member who is 15 or older, though, which received a reply from a member under 15, that reply would show up in your New Posts lists because it was made before members under 15 were prevented from replying to other members' threads in substantive forums.

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Marlea Warlea
    mike just wondering about not being able to reply to certain things when your under 15?

    I noticed a lot there that I usually reply too and I have had a lot of people say im rather mature for my age and I was wondering about that rule of not being able to reply to those forums. I find that unfair.
    I'm sorry you find it unfair. 2/3 of the community that responded to the poll about raising the age limit for members voted to prohibit members under 15 from participating altogether, though, which I'm sure you can agree would be worse than not being able to reply to other members' threads in certain forums.

    It would arguably be unfair to ignore the concerns of the overwhelming majority of the community, and this is the least restrictive way we could think of to make as many members of all ages happy as possible. You can start and participate in as many threads as you like in any area of the forum, and reply to any threads you want to in the forums listed in the announcement.

    As for an exemption, as I said in the announcement,

    Quote:
    If you believe you warrant an exemption because you are able to make substantive replies to other members' threads by virtue of your experience and maturity, please start a thread requesting an exemption in the Talk to the Team forum and tell us why you think so.
         
        05-29-2011, 10:26 PM
      #7
    Started
    I also realised that I can not post responces in the natural horsemanship section. This has always been my favourite section and once again im sure I can contribute a lot to this (more so then critique) as I have trained my mare in natural horsemanship and I have been to clinics (and continue to go to them) and I know a lot about this subject (more then a lot of adults on here im sure)
         
        05-29-2011, 10:31 PM
      #8
    Green Broke
    Marlea, if you feel you warrant an exception then please do as Mike said in the original post (and again in his previous post) and start a thread in 'talk to the team' rather than attempting to hash it out publicly. That would be the mature thing to do. Great job, Mike.
    Posted via Mobile Device
         
        05-29-2011, 10:34 PM
      #9
    Started
    Ok, sorry, I guess I was a little upset :)
         
        05-29-2011, 10:36 PM
      #10
    Banned
    Marlea, sorry that you think it is unfair. I am pleased that you are still allowed to be here.

    I know you like the Natural Horsemanship section, and you can still read it. But most of the sections you like, the contests and the artwork sections are unaffected for you.

    Sorry you are not happy, maybe you could rethink it a little bit and be happy that you are still allowed here, and can post as much as you like in the other sections that you enjoy.
         

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