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Forum threads should autoclose 6 months after the last reply!

  • vsrs_au
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    I agree with those who said that auto-closing threads is a bad idea, and that some old threads are still relevant. Old threads are locked too often, and this stifles discussion and makes the forums harder to use.
  • spartaxoxo
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    I don't support this, and I say this as someone who used to be a moderator on a different international game.

    While it is quite annoying when a thread needs to be locked because a necro would be inappropriate, there are threads where being open is very much appropriate.

    Threads that are guides should be able to be necro'ed as needed, threads with developer responses on pertinent issues as well (so that they can also be quoted), and lastly threads where there has been enough popularity over the years and are good for the forums that mods simply use their own discretion to keep around (a current example is the favorite npc one liners thread).

    Having them autoclose would remove clutter but it also removed a lot of moderation discretion that was good for the playerbase. And humans being able to use good judgment is a definite thing lost with automation.

    That being said the mod team knows best what they want to see, so they definitely should get a big voice in this. The one I did volunteer stuff for didn't have a lot of necro so it wasn't a big deal. But each mod team knows it's own issues which are individual to each forum
    Edited by spartaxoxo on November 15, 2021 11:45PM
  • phaneub17_ESO
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    How about letting the thread author be able to lock their own threads if they deem it has run its course instead of waiting for a moderator to do it? As long as they don't have the power to unlock it, I don't see how something like that can be abused.
  • VaranisArano
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    spartaxoxo wrote: »
    I don't support this, and I say this as someone who used to be a moderator on a different international game.

    While it is quite annoying when a thread needs to be locked because a necro would be inappropriate, there are threads where being open is very much appropriate.

    Threads that are guides should be able to be necro'ed as needed, threads with developer responses on pertinent issues as well (so that they can also be quoted), and lastly threads where there has been enough popularity over the years and are good for the forums that mods simply use their own discretion to keep around (a current example is the favorite npc one liners thread).

    Having them autoclose would remove clutter but it also removed a lot of moderation discretion that was good for the playerbase. And humans being able to use good judgment is a definite thing lost with automation.

    That being said the mod team knows best what they want to see, so they definitely should get a big voice in this. The one I did volunteer stuff for didn't have a lot of necro so it wasn't a big deal. But each mod team knows it's own issues which are individual to each forum

    That's a very good point that guides should be able to be updated.

    One of my guides is for what order players may want to play ESO's story arcs. I wrote it in 2018 and recently updated it now that the Deadlands has rounded out the Gates of Oblivion storyline. Whenever they'll be announcing next year's content, I'll update it again. Also, over the years I've had players ask questions and suggest other guides that work for them.
  • Ilsabet
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    In addition to guides, there are threads that serve as showcases for people's creative works, that they may post in sporadically but still want to keep open so that everything can stay in one place.

    I'm not necessarily in favor of an auto-close feature, but if something like that is ever implemented, then thread authors should have the ability (with minimal fuss) to get their threads unlocked if they want to add new posts. I guess you'd probably have to make that a job for moderators, so that people don't just circumvent locks willy-nilly.
    Ilsabet Menard - DC Breton Nightblade archer
    Katarin Auclair - DC Breton Warden healer & ice mage
    Lollygags-Where-She-Likes - EP Argonian Templar healer
    Gurtha gra-Margaz - DC Orc Sorcerer stormflailer
    My characters and their overly elaborate backstories
    Ilsabet's Headcanon
    PC NA
  • Olauron
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    Every forum has its peculiarities, so it is hard to use past experience as is (for example, on our forum it was not recommended to open new threads for every problem or idea), but some similarities may happen. There was also an anti-necro policy, but it was usually OK to continue an old thread, if that thread was used for ongoing questions, technical problems, discussions, if it was about some modification or another personal creation or any other thread that has specific purpose when creating a duplicate thread is counterproductive.

    That being said, the uniform locking a thread after some period of time (with tools preventing bumping) may not work well, as different forums even here have different types of threads. Threads in "Fiction & Roleplaying", "News & Website Article Discussions", "Community Creations" may be kept open. Threads in "Public Test Server", "Crown Store & ESO Plus", "Combat & Character Mechanics" and even "General ESO Discussion" are mostly for one-time use and can be closed after a while as they are not actual any more and a new discussion can be started if necessary. Threads in "Housing" are in between, as there are both community creations (houses) and discussions of current changes.
    The Three Storm Sharks, episode 7 released on september the 20th.
  • Fennwitty
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    Elephant in the room: The forum's search feature is far too eager to present old content high up on the results list, unless the user goes out of their way to filter them by date.

    Many necros are because a player has an issue, and in an effort not to spam the forums they search for other people who have that issue. People see the 'matching' threads and go with it.

    .............

    The other key point I'm concerned with is how the current moderation guidelines work with BUGS.

    ESO is a great game, but it's got bugs. They're around for years sometimes. They get fixed ... and then come back again months or years later.

    Legitimate Question: Is it better for the game's health to make new threads about the same old bug, or to consolidate threads and also highlight just how long some issues have been going on?

    A lot of necro bug threads are only raised from the dead because ... the bugs also got necroed in a recent patch.
    Edited by Fennwitty on November 16, 2021 1:28PM
    PC NA
  • VaranisArano
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    Ilsabet wrote: »
    In addition to guides, there are threads that serve as showcases for people's creative works, that they may post in sporadically but still want to keep open so that everything can stay in one place.

    I'm not necessarily in favor of an auto-close feature, but if something like that is ever implemented, then thread authors should have the ability (with minimal fuss) to get their threads unlocked if they want to add new posts. I guess you'd probably have to make that a job for moderators, so that people don't just circumvent locks willy-nilly.

    Another good point! I've enjoyed reading your character's journey through ESO. I don't know if you've taken long breaks, though its still nice to be able to take long breaks and come back to work on a project later.

    My own 4 month case of writers block cleared up for NaNaWriMo, but add editing in there and it might be close to 6 months before I get to posting on Merry Misadventures of Mirri. Once I do, I should have Blackwood finished (fingers crossed).

    Other creative threads I can think of with long gaps: there's one player who does fantastic screenshots who updated their thread in batches rarely.
    Edited by VaranisArano on November 16, 2021 1:46PM
  • ZOS_Kevin
    ZOS_Kevin
    admin
    Thanks for the feedback here, all. Very insightful and additional food for thought for us at ZOS. And if others have feedback regarding this, feel free to add.

    Forum Manager for ZeniMax Online Studio and Elder Scrolls Online
    Staff Post
  • Destai
    Destai
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    ZOS_Kevin wrote: »
    Thanks for the feedback here, all. Very insightful and additional food for thought for us at ZOS. And if others have feedback regarding this, feel free to add.

    Can you please give us a straight answer as to when a thread gets closed for being out of date?
    Fennwitty wrote: »
    Elephant in the room: The forum's search feature is far too eager to present old content high up on the results list, unless the user goes out of their way to filter them by date.

    Many necros are because a player has an issue, and in an effort not to spam the forums they search for other people who have that issue. People see the 'matching' threads and go with it.

    .............

    The other key point I'm concerned with is how the current moderation guidelines work with BUGS.

    ESO is a great game, but it's got bugs. They're around for years sometimes. They get fixed ... and then come back again months or years later.

    Legitimate Question: Is it better for the game's health to make new threads about the same old bug, or to consolidate threads and also highlight just how long some issues have been going on?

    A lot of necro bug threads are only raised from the dead because ... the bugs also got necroed in a recent patch.

    It's important to have historical context on recurring issues, so I feel like necroing a thread is acceptable in that circumstance. There are circumstances where people can comment on an old issue that's since been fixed. In those cases, that fix needs to be conveyed rather than the low-effort interpretation of a rule resulting in copy-paste-close.
    Edited by Destai on November 16, 2021 4:26PM
  • amapola76
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    ZOS_Kevin wrote: »
    Hey @SimonThesis. Thanks for the feedback. We have been considering the pros and cons of potentially implementing something like this. Having feedback like this is helpful as we consider if a feature like this helpful to the community and our moderators. Appreciate you bringing this up and thoughts from others on whether players support this or not. We'll keep an eye on this thread for more feedback on this potential feature.

    Are you also considering the feedback of the majority of people in this thread who think it's a terrible idea? Many of us see the value of old threads.
  • Ilsabet
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    Ilsabet wrote: »
    In addition to guides, there are threads that serve as showcases for people's creative works, that they may post in sporadically but still want to keep open so that everything can stay in one place.

    I'm not necessarily in favor of an auto-close feature, but if something like that is ever implemented, then thread authors should have the ability (with minimal fuss) to get their threads unlocked if they want to add new posts. I guess you'd probably have to make that a job for moderators, so that people don't just circumvent locks willy-nilly.

    Another good point! I've enjoyed reading your character's journey through ESO. I don't know if you've taken long breaks, though its still nice to be able to take long breaks and come back to work on a project later.

    My own 4 month case of writers block cleared up for NaNaWriMo, but add editing in there and it might be close to 6 months before I get to posting on Merry Misadventures of Mirri. Once I do, I should have Blackwood finished (fingers crossed).

    Other creative threads I can think of with long gaps: there's one player who does fantastic screenshots who updated their thread in batches rarely.

    In my specific case, I try to keep to a fairly regular posting cadence of 2-3 weeks, and fortunately I've had enough material to work with that I can pace myself so I don't run out of stuff to post. The longest gap I've had was 2 months where I was trying to get a drawing done before I went on with the story. But in the event that I ever take a longer break from the game or something, I would absolutely need my thread to be available for me to continue when I got back to it.

    And there are lots of other writers and artists who don't post as often but it would be good to see their threads get new additions whenever they get so inspired.

    Someone mentioned excluding certain subforums from the auto-lock hammer, which could be a good compromise as long as people know to post their (appropriately themed) ongoing threads there.

    (I also hit up your Mirri thread once I finished Blackwood, and it was quite enjoyable. So if you do have more to post I'll be looking forward to it. I also may have once spent part of an afternoon stalking your tracker for your scattered Bastian and Mirri scenes, so if you ever feel like compiling those into one thread it would be a valuable resource. :D)
    Ilsabet Menard - DC Breton Nightblade archer
    Katarin Auclair - DC Breton Warden healer & ice mage
    Lollygags-Where-She-Likes - EP Argonian Templar healer
    Gurtha gra-Margaz - DC Orc Sorcerer stormflailer
    My characters and their overly elaborate backstories
    Ilsabet's Headcanon
    PC NA
  • Olauron
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    Destai wrote: »
    ZOS_Kevin wrote: »
    Thanks for the feedback here, all. Very insightful and additional food for thought for us at ZOS. And if others have feedback regarding this, feel free to add.

    Can you please give us a straight answer as to when a thread gets closed for being out of date?

    From my experience as a moderator I can say that you will unlikely get a straight answer. Experience shows that any strict border lines are counterproductive, as 90% of people would stop exactly 1e-200 mm before the border. Our life is based of fuzzy concepts and principles, so the rules have to be fuzzy too. There will always be some some ambiguity, there will always be human factor.
    The Three Storm Sharks, episode 7 released on september the 20th.
  • VaranisArano
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    Ilsabet wrote: »
    Ilsabet wrote: »
    In addition to guides, there are threads that serve as showcases for people's creative works, that they may post in sporadically but still want to keep open so that everything can stay in one place.

    I'm not necessarily in favor of an auto-close feature, but if something like that is ever implemented, then thread authors should have the ability (with minimal fuss) to get their threads unlocked if they want to add new posts. I guess you'd probably have to make that a job for moderators, so that people don't just circumvent locks willy-nilly.

    Another good point! I've enjoyed reading your character's journey through ESO. I don't know if you've taken long breaks, though its still nice to be able to take long breaks and come back to work on a project later.

    My own 4 month case of writers block cleared up for NaNaWriMo, but add editing in there and it might be close to 6 months before I get to posting on Merry Misadventures of Mirri. Once I do, I should have Blackwood finished (fingers crossed).

    Other creative threads I can think of with long gaps: there's one player who does fantastic screenshots who updated their thread in batches rarely.

    In my specific case, I try to keep to a fairly regular posting cadence of 2-3 weeks, and fortunately I've had enough material to work with that I can pace myself so I don't run out of stuff to post. The longest gap I've had was 2 months where I was trying to get a drawing done before I went on with the story. But in the event that I ever take a longer break from the game or something, I would absolutely need my thread to be available for me to continue when I got back to it.

    And there are lots of other writers and artists who don't post as often but it would be good to see their threads get new additions whenever they get so inspired.

    Someone mentioned excluding certain subforums from the auto-lock hammer, which could be a good compromise as long as people know to post their (appropriately themed) ongoing threads there.

    (I also hit up your Mirri thread once I finished Blackwood, and it was quite enjoyable. So if you do have more to post I'll be looking forward to it. I also may have once spent part of an afternoon stalking your tracker for your scattered Bastian and Mirri scenes, so if you ever feel like compiling those into one thread it would be a valuable resource. :D)

    Glad you enjoyed the excerpts! I had planned on including them in Misadventures once I finished Blackwood, but now that I'm thinking about it, this draft has grown lengthy enough that those might need their own thread so people don't have to wade through all of Blackwood first. Either that or I need a table of contents, I guess.

    I really like your idea of creators being able to unlock their own threads or ask the mods to unlock it.
  • quadraxis666
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    2 years ago I entered into a pact with some random guys to necro a thread in 3 years time for reasons I cant remember. So please just hold off auto closing threads for 9 more months lol.
  • kargen27
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    amapola76 wrote: »
    ZOS_Kevin wrote: »
    Hey @SimonThesis. Thanks for the feedback. We have been considering the pros and cons of potentially implementing something like this. Having feedback like this is helpful as we consider if a feature like this helpful to the community and our moderators. Appreciate you bringing this up and thoughts from others on whether players support this or not. We'll keep an eye on this thread for more feedback on this potential feature.

    Are you also considering the feedback of the majority of people in this thread who think it's a terrible idea? Many of us see the value of old threads.

    The old threads would still be there. If you had something to add you could create a new thread and provide a link back to the old one for people interested in seeing the history of the topic. Those just wanting more recent discussion would read your opening comment and all that followed.
    Sometimes purple is just a color.
  • FeedbackOnly
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    Stanx wrote: »
    But then how will I practice my necromancy skills?

    We got the class now.
  • FeedbackOnly
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    Uhm, no. Especially if the topic is relevant, they should be open for posting for as long as these forums will last IMHO.
    I could see some mods closing 'old' threads but then again they try to group similarly opened thread into a single one?!? Makes no sense.

    By keeping them open & allowing replies keeps things tidier and acts as a knowledge base. Useful for that search function too.

    Just make a new topic after 6 months from last reply
  • Destai
    Destai
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    Olauron wrote: »
    Destai wrote: »
    ZOS_Kevin wrote: »
    Thanks for the feedback here, all. Very insightful and additional food for thought for us at ZOS. And if others have feedback regarding this, feel free to add.

    Can you please give us a straight answer as to when a thread gets closed for being out of date?

    From my experience as a moderator I can say that you will unlikely get a straight answer. Experience shows that any strict border lines are counterproductive, as 90% of people would stop exactly 1e-200 mm before the border. Our life is based of fuzzy concepts and principles, so the rules have to be fuzzy too. There will always be some some ambiguity, there will always be human factor.

    Sure, that's fine, but if there's going to a rule visibly enforced, I think it's good for us to know the guidelines. Like 6-9 months, 9 months+, etc. It's a simple question that Kevin should be able to answer.
  • ZOS_Kevin
    ZOS_Kevin
    admin
    Hey @Destai. I think that is a fair question.

    Currently, we are not specifically going through and closing threads by a certain date. Hence the thought behind an auto-close function. Rather, closing a thread currently depends on the thread topic's benefit to the community and the time between activity, when determining if it should be closed. (There are exceptions to this and are addressed individually.) But for a rough estimate number, about a year of inactivity would warrant a thread to be closed. Again, we want to stress that this is not a strict rule, as many of these situations could change depending on context of the conversation.


    @amapola76 Yes, we are considering everyone's feedback here. To be clear, no decisions have been made. It's just something that has been on the idea board, hence why your feedback is important here. Plus, there are a few other items that need to be addressed first. Just wanted to chime in with thoughts since someone brought up the topic.
    Forum Manager for ZeniMax Online Studio and Elder Scrolls Online
    Staff Post
  • TequilaFire
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    If a thread hasn't had a reply in 6 months it does no harm to lock that thread as it is still available for reference and linkage.
    It will not get locked if still an on going creative or otherwise type of thread that gets active posts.
    Actually this is the first forum I have been a part of that wasn't worried about a bloated database causing poor performance.
    Most forums I have been part of the management of archived off posts past a certain age.

    PSN: Tequilafire
    PC: @Tequilafire

  • Sylvermynx
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    I can see reasoning behind keeping archives of guides, threads still relevant for whatever reason, and threads regarding bugs/issues that are still currently a problem even if the original post was years ago. Those cases could be moved to an "Archives" section; and those who feel a thread they posted is still relevant could request it remain open in the archives, giving their reasoning for the request.

    But the times someone drags a non-relevant, jokey, snarky, or just plain mean thread up happen pretty frequently, and those seem to me to be the ones that should have auto-closure handled backend.
  • k9mouse
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    Jaimeh wrote: »
    A few draugr threads roaming the front pages is a small price to pay for that QOL feature.

    Moreover, there's been a few of those threads where it's players adding solutions or adding information to a long-standing bug that ZOS hasn't fixed. While it's tempting to say "Just start a new thread" the truth is that most players find those old threads through Google's search algorithm as they hunt for a solution to their problem. The best place for them to put their solutiom/problem is that thread because that's where Google will direct future players looking for answers. And if ZOS doesn't like that type of draugr thread, then maybe they should fix the glitched quests before they accrue years of players asking for solutions.

    Agreed, and also, old threads are part of the forum's, and the game's history, and checking up on a date of something only takes a second, so I don't see why they should be removed.

    I feel the same way.
  • runa_gate
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    If the search function was worth a damn all the information stored herein would be invaluable
  • newtinmpls
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    I've seen a few active threads arbitrarily closed because some forum peep thought they were "too old" (yes, "Thread for PC users", I will never forget you) so I do not have confidence that the actual content of the thread and usefulness to the community/discussion has been/would be taken into consideration.

    That being said an "autoclose" function implies that old information is somehow magically never useful...

    I think it was @Fennwitty who noted: "A lot of necro bug threads are only raised from the dead because ... the bugs also got necroed in a recent patch"
    Tenesi Faryon of Telvanni - Dunmer Sorceress who deliberately sought sacrifice into Cold Harbor to rescue her beloved.
    Hisa Ni Caemaire - Altmer Sorceress, member of the Order Draconis and Adept of the House of Dibella.
    Broken Branch Toothmaul - goblin (for my goblin characters, I use either orsimer or bosmer templates) Templar, member of the Order Draconis and persistently unskilled pickpocket
    Mol gro Durga - Orsimer Socerer/Battlemage who died the first time when the Nibenay Valley chapterhouse of the Order Draconis was destroyed, then went back to Cold Harbor to rescue his second/partner who was still captive. He overestimated his resistance to the hopelessness of Oblivion, about to give up, and looked up to see the golden glow of atherius surrounding a beautiful young woman who extended her hand to him and said "I can help you". He carried Fianna Kingsley out of Cold Harbor on his shoulder. He carried Alvard Stower under one arm. He also irritated the Prophet who had intended the portal for only Mol and Lyris.
    ***
    Order Draconis - well c'mon there has to be some explanation for all those dragon tattoos.
    House of Dibella - If you have ever seen or read "Memoirs of a Geisha" that's just the beginning...
    Nibenay Valley Chapterhouse - Where now stands only desolate ground and a dolmen there once was a thriving community supporting one of the major chapterhouses of the Order Draconis
  • HertoginJanneke
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    Why dig up the lead for ancient forum topic if it does not improve your Scrying and Excavation skill ?

    Please (automaticly) close all topics older than 3 months. Most of the times, they are from a previous patch.
  • Destai
    Destai
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    ZOS_Kevin wrote: »
    Hey @Destai. I think that is a fair question.

    Currently, we are not specifically going through and closing threads by a certain date. Hence the thought behind an auto-close function. Rather, closing a thread currently depends on the thread topic's benefit to the community and the time between activity, when determining if it should be closed. (There are exceptions to this and are addressed individually.) But for a rough estimate number, about a year of inactivity would warrant a thread to be closed. Again, we want to stress that this is not a strict rule, as many of these situations could change depending on context of the conversation.


    @amapola76 Yes, we are considering everyone's feedback here. To be clear, no decisions have been made. It's just something that has been on the idea board, hence why your feedback is important here. Plus, there are a few other items that need to be addressed first. Just wanted to chime in with thoughts since someone brought up the topic.

    Thanks, I appreciate the estimate. I think there's some room for improvement on some folks' discretion. Case in point:

    https://forums.elderscrollsonline.com/en/discussion/527985/fashion-experts-of-eso-got-any-advice-for-a-good-out-for-a-vampire/p3

    We discussed this one and it's still closed. I think if it's that important to you guys to enforce this rule, then automate it. If it's a CYA issue that necessitates the closing of cosmetic threads, then why not automate it?

    I think the frustration comes from a resurrected thread having a renewed conversation and then that conversation is shut down. So rather than have conversations get shut down, I think we should establish convos types that don't get closed. The rest can get closed automatically. If the goal truly is to benefit the community, than the moderation style is in direct conflict with that and I feel needs to be adjusted.
    Edited by Destai on November 17, 2021 5:24PM
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