UtaForum Code of Conduct

Hi all,

This post has been a long time coming. As forum admin, I must apologize for how lax things have gotten here over the past couple of years. Rather than making excuses, I am here to address the underlying problems and explain the steps the moderation team and I have taken to fix our rules-enforcement system.

Over the past couple of months, I assisted Lystrialle in creating a new vocalsynth-themed community on Mastodon. During this process, we both learned quite a bit about community moderation, and realized the core problems with UF:
  1. Turning a blind eye to offsite actions, as though they have no effect on the forum community, is a huge mistake.

  2. A three-strike warning system is much too lax.

  3. The combination of these two issues allowed for a handful of people to circumvent the rules by barely toeing the line, but not ENOUGH to garner anything but slaps on the wrist for their repeated and persistent bad behavior.

  4. This creates a situation in which other members of the forum feel unsafe and neglect to report problematic users with the belief that nothing will happen.

In short, the core problems with UtaForum could never be solved by simply taking on more moderators, as the underlying system they were following was ineffective.

Therefore, the mods and I have worked together to rewrite the UtaForum rules into the UtaForum Code of Conduct, and our users will be henceforth expected to adhere to this code. The rules themselves have not changed much (though the language has been reworked to be less reminiscent of the early 00s) but one aspect of our policy that HAS changed is our recognition of offsite activities.

While our own moderation ability only extends to the boundaries of the forum, we can make sure it remains a safe environment for everyone by taking note of problematic users’ actions offsite and forthwith removing their privileges to take part in this community.

Also, in dropping the three-strike policy, rule infractions will be dealt with on a per-instance basis. Barring Zero-Tolerance, the moderation team will take into account users’ past behavior and the severity of the infraction to decide upon the appropriate consequences.

Once again, I apologize, and I hope this is a step forward in the right direction to make UtaForum a much more warm and welcoming community.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding the new Code of Conduct, its language or the repercussions of infractions, please feel free to contact any admins or mods.

(As a side note, we will be upgrading to Xenforo 4.1 sometime in the coming months. While this upgrade is expected to be mostly seamless, our themes are currently being rebuilt to work with the new framework. More news on that to come later.)