Hi. I'm moozooh, sometimes known as Vladimir Sergeyev, a technical writer/editor/translator/language specialist by trade. Most of you have likely seen me around as I've been with TASVideos for ~18 years on and off at this point, most of which I spent as a forum moderator, wiki editor, and, for the past four or so years, Discord moderator as well. Right now I'm one of the oldest still-active staff members around, probably only second to adelikat. Basically a living cryptid, borderline undead.
In the light of this announcement, I'd like to share an amusing anecdote. In late 2015 I was appointed starman. Yes, that was a thing back in the day; nothing to do with the David Bowie song
or the John Carpenter movie
. During my short and otherwise uneventful tenure, I sent a message entitled "The TASVideos takeover plan
" (in Russian) to feos, who lived an hour-something away by train at the time. That's the subject line I came up with to lure him out to have a meeting and discuss
our evil plans
a revision to the starring and recommendations policy and related things. It was a great and memorable meeting, by the way! I did pretty much nothing else useful as a starman.
Wait, what do you mean by "that wasn't useful, either"?
Fast-forward some eight years, and both feos and I are senior staff. What a... coincidence, h-huh? Certainly
not in any way related to that message, trust me!
But frankly, all things considered, this shouldn't come as a surprise. This community is very dear to me, and I'm thankful to the staff and other members with whom I've communicated over the years for treating me well and willing to forgive my sudden and often prolonged disappearances. No matter what happens, I always come back here, and I always receive a warm welcome. I want to share this experience with other members and give back to one of the few places on the internet that actually feels like home.
Hence, as of today, I've taken on the role of a senior moderator. No, not because it's an honorary role to recognize the elderly among us. This is a new role that was branched out from activities previously performed by admins, most notably Memory. (Thank you very much for doing this until now!) For me specifically, this promotion means at least three relatively new things that will become my duties on a consistent basis.
- I'll have much deeper involvement in matters concerning moderation policy (and by extent, advise other seniors on PR, general communication, and crisis management when necessary) and the general senior-only discussions to which I had not been privy until now.
- I'll be managing the moderator team. This, in turn, means both that the moderators can now turn to me for advice and final say in moderation matters, and that regular users can complain to me about other moderators' conduct or decisions. And I'll be the main person hiring moderators and letting them go. I'll still be performing my usual moderator duties myself, too, of course.
- You can yell at me directly if there's some long-standing problem with moderation and nothing is seemingly being done about it or is being done backwards, and I'll prioritize it. Keep in mind that moderators and site staff are people and they can't always operate at the best of their ability or be on the same page for every question, so not every problem can be solved quickly or efficiently. But we will try to find any improvements we can implement at the time—as is The TASVideos Way™.
I will conveniently ignore the fact that breaking things is also The TASVideos Way™.
As usual, everyone is also free to DM me for any other concerns—both personal and regarding other users. I can't promise I'll be able to resolve all of them, or that it will be quick, but I will listen and provide an outside-observer take on a situation, a guidance, or an explanation on how a given situation or behavior is seen through the lens of the moderation policy.
On topic of DMs and guidance, time for another anecdote: just last month a well-known TASVideos member (name undisclosed in the interest of privacy) DM'd me with a question about pooping—and I gave them an earnest answer to the best of my ability. Un-bowel-ievable, right? Can you imagine the level to which I'm willing to dirty my hands (figuratively, for now) to deal with your concerns?
...Alright, I think it's out of my system now. That fulfills the toilet humor quota. Still with me? Amazing persistence. I guess I'll take the opportunity to announce some of the near-term plans regarding moderation. You didn't think I'd take this position willy-nilly without at least some
planning ahead, eh? Did you, now?
- First—and this should hopefully be ready very very soon—we will implement ModMail in the Discord server. This should streamline the reporting process and enable the moderator team to efficiently take on the more delicate cases that require minimizing personal exposure for the reporter.
- A report feature for the forum will also follow at some point afterwards. Crazy that we've spent all this time without one!
- There are some things that I have in mind but will not make public until I understand how to best implement them. These mainly concern internal processes.
- In terms of policy and response quality, I'd like to aim for incremental but noticeable improvements. Just like feos and his movie rules meta-meta-play, I'll be playing the 5D chess of moderating the moderation practice. Specifically, tightening up the bottom end (going for faster and more efficient responses, more proactive involvement when necessary) and cooling down the top end (hopefully fewer knee-jerk bans and generally more professional behavior when delivering severe punishment)..
Finally, if you've spent some time with the community, have a solid understanding of how it operates, are able to react to conflict situations and bad behavior in a calm and level-headed manner, and would like to help out with moderation, DM me on TASVideos Discord @moozooh. The more moderators we have, the easier the burden on any one in particular. Almost like a Ponzi scheme!
I totally could've come up with a less unpleasant comparison!
Now go register in DTC11
. It's more important than reading pathetic attempts at comedy in a staff announcement thread, of all places.