Townhall Minutes; 06/07/2021


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Here are the minutes from tonight's event. If you prefer to listen @MadCast: Suixwas kind enough to record the meeting for us as well. You can find that here.

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Epic : Thanks everyone for coming, we're going to start off with the admins, and close out with Staff this evening. 

Qrow: Destiny is doing well, I'm going to let Lizzie and Stan speak more about the raids later on. 

KittyStark: Replacing some social Saturday weekends with events for Don’t Starve, Risk of Rain 2, and Jackbox Games (alternating weekends). I'll be looking for requested games for variety events.

Epic: Is there a forum post for active feedback?

KittyStark: Yes there’s a poll post, it will be up early tomorrow morning so people can vote on any games that catch their eye, or make suggestions.

Epic: Cool thanks so much for that.

Epic: Mike told me he wasn’t going to be here, so Horsedolphin3 you’ll have the opportunity to be the last of the SFM’s tonight.

Horsedolphin3: I don’t have much to add honestly, I’m just here to help out wherever things are needed, answer and ask questions, the usual. 

Epic: Nothing wrong with that there’s going to be a lot of questions to answer and ask in the months to come. That said we will take it over to Maday and I. There’s a question/open floor after. First order of business is what you guys have already read about, Red and Munsa have stepped down, they are currently LFM’s. It’s going to be Maday and I for a while. Maday is at a point where he can step up in his life. The direction we are headed isn’t a task anyone can do for themselves so I thank him for stepping up. We have a lot of stuff coming down the pipe that isn’t going to be fun or easy. There’s been a lot of things that have kind of been left negligent. It would be specific to say the last cycle, bluntly, it would be over the last year where we have not, (at least at my level), been able to address [issues] such as the website, or a couple of the more glaring issues in the community. We’re doing a top down and assessing whether if things are policy, or if it’s website, and we’re looking at hindrances. Whether it’s people joining our community, or us being accessible, and most importantly valuable to our membership. As I said earlier those are very high level, and it’s going to be buckling down and assessing MadCast as a whole. We’re very dedicated to it’s continuation. Maday do you have anything to add here before we start getting into the questions that might come up?

Maday: I will just kind of reiterate the website side of things, is yes I will resume the work on it, however there’s a slight hiccup we have run into unfortunately, and we are already in the process of evaluating our way around that. The proposed theme that Red was using and working on, as far as the update was going, one of the updates to the site software broke the theme. I cannot do different programed boxes in [unheard program], because the entire interface to input and move around those boxes does not exist due to the break. At this point the person that we purchased the theme from has not updated a thing, and from what I was looking around I don’t know if they’re even going to. Again Epic and I have been looking at similar things to get around that issue, from there I will resume the work.

Epic: Thanks for that. One of the things that I think has not been properly capitalized on, is the opportunity for feedback that you guys have been presented with. You’ve given your feedback and there hasn’t been a lot of action [in] the response ... how that feedback has been given back to you. Maday and I are going to be very frank and honest about how we’re evaluating; hey we’re targeting this; we’re talking about this. It serves as a small status update as to the efforts were taking at our level and it gives you the opportunity to share positives or negatives. It’s not going to be extremely communicative at all times, but I’m personally willing to share that endeavor with you. I don’t think that seven people should have just those seven persons input on the final decision that we will make for the community. Not asking for anything from you guys, but if you’re as passionate about this community as myself and Maday are I encourage you to share. I’m not sure if I’ll be doing it in the positive planning thread, or where I’ll start. I want to open the floor up for questions, comments, concerns, or anything else.

Mandalorian: Destiny, raid wise we have two raid teams that are fixed. We did a bit of cleanup in each raid team to reconstruct them. We were kind of getting to the point where each team had too many people, just people in individual chats. We’re not kicking you out if you were removed. We have people who don’t raid with one team, and usually raid with the other, for the streamline of communication it’s easiest that way. Day one raiding we didn’t complete, we had an early stop since a couple of us had life happen. We are looking to expand to three raid teams for the new raid on the next expansion. It’s a bit daunting as it’s difficult to juggle the calendars and people. As far as the season is concerned Lizzie do you have anything?

Lizziejay: Many thanks to Bungie for revealing this season the day after last months townhall. Season is strong with the new story, which will continue till Aug 24 due to push back of expansion to next March (?) ... so an extra six months of waiting. I feel that some people are feeling a little bit of raid burnout. It does mean people are around ready to do anything else for new players to come in. Now is a good time for new people to come in. I’m working on title guides for the new season, and the raid title which is time-gated behind challenges. When the next season drops, no one knows if it’s going to be for six months, or if they’re going to cram something in. Until then it’ll be the same old same old.

Chibiushi: (comment in Townhall chat) I think what you are saying is positive but I am going to be 100%... you are saying vaguely we are going to be really honest with everyone about everything. I think I follow what you are saying thou but at the same time I feel like it should be pointed out. (Chibiushi starts speaking after being asked for clarification) It’s exciting to see new faces. I don’t see behind the scenes, but as a member that does care about things. My take on it COVID happened, as part of that what I’ve seen in other gaming communities is a lot of growth, and we didn’t have that here. A lot of times, like Townhall from May, June, July of last year we could’ve recorded it and played it again because there wasn’t any difference. I've been wanting to get the information about the website, so I asked. “Last month you said there’d be info and there wasn’t any” and the response that I got was well ... COVID, and I get COVID, but that was a shitty way to respond to it. We have things in the pipelines, I’m excited about you saying that, but it doesn’t sound much different than what I’ve been hearing for a year. I’m not trying to sound like an asshole, but I care, you say that you’re going to get details, but we’re not getting any details at the same time.

Epic: It’s my job as a staff member to critically assess and progress, a big part of my job is to put myself in your shoes. How would I feel about getting this information after wanting to see change, and not getting it? The only agency that you have to keeping me accountable is talking to me like you are now. Given the adversity you guys have experienced in getting results over the last year, you’re not being an asshole. We missed a big opportunity over the last year, and I think that there’s no single person that contributed to that, but I can definitely own that it could’ve been handled at a Staff level a lot better. I’m not going to make excuses for Red or Munsa, nor myself, as what happened has happened. Right now until I get my ass in a chair and start writing things out with Maday in a way that is quantifiable and readable, that isn’t a garbled mass of sentiment, it’s not making it’s way to you guys. I can talk about things that we’re going to touch on at least initially. Some of the things Maday and I are working on, I want there to be opportunity for us to be online and talking about it. I want to make sure you guys aren’t left out of the discussion. There has not been perfect transparency to you guys, while I can’t guarantee it, I’m going to try where I can. It’s going to be exhausting but I think it’s owed to you guys.

Suix: One of the things that I’ve been thinking about, I do think it’s tough for those of us that are full members who want to contribute and maybe have ideas, and maybe that’s why that thread that Stan put up is good ... is not really knowing where help is needed. I’ve been approached a couple of times over the last year and a half, I know we’re looking for RFM’s but I can’t commit to that. I think that that transparency can really commit to that. Even when nothing really seems like it’s going on, I think everyone is really invested in this. That sort of bidirectional communication, not just what you’re thinking about what you’re doing with the community, but where you need a little bit of help is a great way to engage.

Epic: If there’s one sentiment that I want to leave you with is words aren’t worth shit. I can appreciate what you said there Suix that you hang around during off hours from an already time consuming career. It’s a big commitment. I think we can shorten or lower the obstacles for full members to contribute. We can all take on a little work in the sense that it might be good to idle in Discord for new people to come in and converse, for some of the two-hundred plus associates we have in this Discord. These are all things that we can talk about in our own way. That would take a huge bit off of staff as we are concerned about the what’s stopping people from joining MadCast. Did I answer your question Chibi? 

Chibiushi: Yeah, just knowing the faces, personally if you’re asking me, knowing the faces that are attached to the admin team now. I’m really excited to see ... I know what you’re capable of, I’m excited to see where the community goes from here. In all my time here I can’t think of a better representation of a great person than Joe. The fact that he’s going to be in that position again, I’m really excited to see what happens. 

Epic: I don’t think I could do it without Maday, honestly. It was a commitment to take on Staff, and a commitment to remain Staff. Maday stepping up has been an incredible boost to the community. We’re going to keep on keeping on in a more positive sense.

Maday: Just to clue people in as to what we’re kind of looking at, even on the basic initial process of us going over things, you’ve gotta consider we used to have two-hundred and fifty members at one point. The concept is we have tailored rules and structures based around that size of community and growth. Unfortunately as things have kind of degraded down to a meager fifty-five now ... so suddenly the rules and structures built to maintain the multi-hundred count, isn’t very conducive into bringing in new people when the community numbers are so low. One of the primary pushing points is to try to do all we can to vastly simplify all the rules we can. Do we have rules where multiple paragraphs can be summed up into a simple statement. For someone to be able to quickly look at us, right now it’s "oh you want to know our expectations, go read our multiparagrahs". You’ve probably lost sixty to seventy percent of the people you hand that multiparter to. We may not get to that simplification very easily, we’ve dialed things up for a larger community, but never had any means in place to dial things down. It’s part of a learning experience unfortunately it’s a taste of what we’re kind of looking at. When we say there's all this stuff in the pipelines, there’s a lot to look over. The more we can simplify the better it is going to be moving forward.

Epic: I’m going to take it a step further, if any of you in chat would like to be a part of, brainstorming sessions, talking on the health of the community. That I’m hoping to put into a form of something very constructive and not a time waster for anyone involved, shoot me a DM on Discord. I’ll keep you guys tucked into a pocket. 

Doublestufforeo: Why not make it an event like Townhall so that people who may not have ideas, or be a sounding board, can at least be there to be a part of the discussion to know what's going on and be in the know how?

Epic: This will be in the full members forums. This is meant to be accessible for anyone, anyone who has tags can feel like they can hop in and have input on it. It would probably be done in more of a public space, not in a locked room where associates can’t be a part of and listen in. I don’t want to shut the door on anyone that’s interested. Like I said this is all fresh, this is all stuff that Maday and I didn’t have the opportunity to start discussing until last week. That’s all of it on the table guys. 

Mandalorian: So you’re going to have a mini-session, a Q&A after townhall? 

Epic: This isn’t today, as much as we want to talk about important things to you and me. This is going to be in the future when Maday and I get to talk about where we’re going to be attacking first. It’s aggravating to not be specific as I like to deal in details but Maday and I need to talk about it first so we can get a firm direction. Unless you have something to add to that Maday? 

Maday: I don’t think there’s anything really more to add. I’ve already got plans to kind of assemble basically a checklist of attacks. It’ll be a checklist that I’m not going to consider done until they’re all crossed off and tackled. I will add a final bit as far as the reason for the gating that happened in the prior years. The gating was simply a byproduct of our structural system is what is it. Especially when you get up into Staff and SFM ranks. When you’re trying to discuss policy for the community it’s impressively difficult to just community gather input from hundreds of members to filter it to the few that actually need to discuss what to do with it. Since our numbers are lower now it’s far easier to reopen that door of “this is fine we can handle getting the input”. I think we’ve gotten to a point in size where it’s far more easier and accessible to be open to the members at large. That would be my explanation as to why the whole gating and things, past years, was likely to have happened. 

Epic: I think that's succinctly put, we’ll call Townhall at that. I apologize for going 20 minutes over, thanks for everyone waiting on my late ass. 
 

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