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ZakuConvoy

What are "exceptional circumstances" for validation/Would it just be easier to start from scratch?

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ZakuConvoy

This is kind of a two-fold question.  First, does anybody know what the "exceptional circumstances" actually are in this rule:

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  • DON’T ask the staff “when will I be validated?” other than in exceptional circumstances. We all act on a voluntary basis and have other commitments, but the admins try to consider accounts for validation at least once a month.

It's been about three months since I got up to 50 posts and I still haven't been validated.  To be fair, I have no idea if they just haven't gotten around to me or if I "failed" validation or what.  Do I need to write more stories?  How many more stories?  How much is "enough", anyway?

(And to be fair, I DID have a post that was "under discussion" by the Mods...two months ago.  They never got back to me about what they decided one way or another.  No idea if that would be the hold up or not.)

What would be a fair amount of time to wait to contact the staff?  6 months?  Longer?  Does time even factor into this?  I mean this isn't exactly a life or death thing, but I can't think of what "exceptional circumstances" would mean otherwise if not a long amount of time.  I would just ask the staff, but...it's against the rules to contact them about this stuff.

(I'm not even sure if posting this topic isn't hurting my chances for validation.  Please don't hold this against me, I'm sorry if this is the wrong way to do this.  The rules say I can't contact you about when I'm going to be validated, but I'd still like to know what I'm doing wrong.)

 

And then there's the OTHER thing I've been mulling over:  Would it actually be easier for me to get validated if I just had my account deleted entirely and started over from 0?

I know multiple accounts are against the rules, but I can't find anything about deleting one account to start another one.

My thought is that before I make another push to try and get validated on THIS account, it might just take less effort to start over again from scratch.  Just post nothing but stories to get up to the 50 posts so I don't have to worry if my posts are "meaty" enough to be considered for validation.  

Because, I've seen people on here that are over 200 posts in and still aren't validated.  There are probably some reasons for that, most of which aren't my business, but my impression is becoming that if you don't get validated within the 50-ish posts...you might not get validated at all.  And that commenting on other people's stuff doesn't count towards your validation at all.  And, in fact, it might actually hurt you if most of your posts are comments (like mine probably are).

I know the rules SAY you can get validated by posting in other people's topics and whatnot...

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  • DO make thoughtful posts in other people's topics.

...But, from what I've gathered from various topics on the subject, that might not be how it actually works.  Or maybe what *I* think of as "thoughtful", the admin doesn't .  There doesn't seem to be a hard-and-fast minimum number of words for posts to count towards validation, but...here let me give you an example (it's from a comment on a comic page):

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I really need to get this manga out of my backlog...

This is a very good drawing.  I especially like the expressions in panels 3, 7, and 10.

Now, would a comment like this count towards validation?  It's short, true, but I like to think it's a "positive contribution" to the forum.  It helps encourage the artist.  And I made a specific comment about what I liked about it.  Does something like this count towards validation or does it get thrown out?  Or does it hurt my chances of getting validated BECAUSE it's a throw-away comment?  I don't know.  And I'm not sure anyone does but the admin.

But stories (of decent length)  are almost universally agreed to "count" towards validation.

I figure that if I post 50 decent-ish stories...there really shouldn't be any reason I shouldn't get validated.  No commenting on other people's posts at all.  No participating in other people's discussions.  Nothing but stories.  (I would do Observations, too, but I'm not around a lot of other people a lot, so that really isn't a option for me).  Posting new content seems to be all that "counts" for validation.

I kind of wish that if you "failed" validation, the admin would send an e-mail telling you WHY you "failed" and what they wanted from you specifically.  Like, "Do 5 more stories and you can get in", but...I guess that would just be more work for them.  Or maybe they could just make the "points" system for content official so we unvalidated members could keep track of where we are ourselves and just "apply" for validation when we reach 50 points instead of 50 posts.  And, again, I have no idea if they just haven't gotten around to me since there's only the one admin and my username starts with a "Z"...which means I would be on the bottom of the list.  I have no idea what their backlog is like.  Or how they do this...or anything really.

But it seems like the most likely reason I'm not validated is my posting history.  I don't know if just posting a bunch of stories NOW would be enough to get validated, or if my percentage-of-stories-to-comments ratio is basically too high to EVER reasonably get validated.  Would just pushing all my comments out of the first page of my comments history with stories work or do I basically have to balance out all my comments with stories, which means closer to 100 stories?

I realize this would be rather extreme...and potentially crazy.  But, I just don't know what else to do at this point.  There's no way to ask for guidance on this without breaking the rules and it seems like no one knows what the line is where you SHOULD be validated but the one admin at this point.

I don't know if I've posted too little a been labeled a "lurker".  I don't know if I've posted too much too quick at times and been labeled a "spammer".  I don't know if it's my Z-username perpetually placing me at the bottom of the list.  I don't know if I just need to write a bunch of stories, or how many stories, or if I'm writing the wrong kind of stories, or what.  I don't even know if the "validating period" of the month is coming up or has already passed or if I'm not even going to be considered for another couple of months for whatever reason. Maybe you guys just don't like me, I don't know.

And, yes, maybe I'm crazy...but I fear that the longer I take to get validated the less likely I am to GET validated.  If I just start over now, I'm not really losing anything of value, because I would basically be where I am now for all I know.  I have no idea if I've actually made any headway getting validated or if I'm basically in the red with the staff (and posts like these might be just digging a deeper hole...to mix my metaphors).  

 

I dunno...this whole thing is just making me paranoid, and...I just don't know what you want from me, I just don't.  A "positive contribution" to the forum is just so vague a guideline that it can be stretched to mean everything or nothing.  I have no way to tell where I stand right now.  Maybe just starting over from 0 posts would be for the best, maybe not, I don't know.

I'm just so tired of being watched, but constantly ignored.  This isn't any fun anymore.

*Sigh*  I just needed to get that off my chest, I guess.

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Anonymouse

I can't speak to the rest of this post but I don't think it's possible to delete your account.

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SneezyHolmes

I'm pretty sure validation is at the staff's discretion so regardless of what you post/how much, the staff ultimately decides if you'd be a good candidate for validation or not so if they feel that you aren't/wouldn't be a positive addition to the forum then you won't get it. Don't quote me on this though, I could be wrong.

Edited by SneezyHolmes

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Chanel_no5

I don't know exact circumstances either, but I think both of the above are correct. 

However, if I'm not mistaken, the admins, who are the ones that validate members, haven't been on the forum in a while, as they're very busy. So the delay isn't necessarily on you, it may simply be that no one has gone through the unvalidated members in a while. 

 

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facet

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Garblin

Yeah I think you’re way overthinking this. The forum is kind of a ghost town, these days, and admin have been far and few between.

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Shay

You can't delete your account yourself. Theoretically, it would be possible for the admin to delete your account, but I've heard it said that they almost never do that. Like it would have to be a pretty extreme circumstance for them to actually do it and wanting to start your account over from scratch probably isn't a good enough reason.

I can tell you that posting stories/artwork is not necessary to become validated. I think the example you posted of a comment would be considered a positive contribution since it gives specific feedback even if it's not that detailed. I think they just don't want to see people spam commenting with a ton of short things that just say "Nice story" or "I agree" on posts.

As others have said, the admins are very busy with stuff going on in their own lives and might not have much time for the forum, so it's probably much more about that than it is about what you are or aren't doing. Unfortunately I don't know what it would take to get some more active admins on the forum to process things more quickly. In the mean time, just keep making positive contributions to the forum whether they're stories or comments. There's no set post count, but it is about quality over quantity.

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Joal 555

As others have said, the most likely explanation is time pressures on the current admin(s), unless you happen to have received a warning, which would automatically exclude you until it expired. However, the tone and content of your post suggests this is not the case (as an aside, there is no need to respond to that specific point - warnings are not made known to other members and it is entirely your choice if you want to share on the forum whether or not you have received a warning).

Making a new account is definitely a non-starter, because that will automatically gain you a warning and accounts are virtually never deleted, because the staff will want to keep a record of your previous contributions for future reference.

As far as "exceptional circumstances" are concerned, these can't be defined as such, because (by definition) they are exceptional, or because nobody was able to foresee a certain set of very unusual circumstances. It certainly wouldn't include frustration at having cleared 50 posts and not yet having been validated (even though it is perfectly understandable to feel that way).

My advice would be to keep posting (both starting topics and commenting on other people's threads in a meaningful way) and there is every chance that the next time the admin(s) consider accounts for validation, you will be successful.

Caveat - my comments above are based on how things worked when I was on the staff and it is possible that there have been changes since then, although I believe the principles are probably the same in general).

I hope you carry on being active and enjoying those areas of the forum that you currently have access to and good luck for future validation!

:joal:

 

 

 

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PuddinPop

Staff is in a bit of a predicament at the moment. 

To put it bluntly, there are no active admins. None. I stepped back in after resigning in July, but found I don't have the time to commit to the duties, so will be stepping back down shortly. 

@Enkidom and @High on Lullabies are the only other people capable of permitting validation, and neither of them are active anymore, and from what I've seen, aren't around either. 

So basically, I would just say that it isn't a personal thing. Unless you have any active warnings, there is no reason why your account isn't validated other than the simple reason that there aren't the staff around to approve the validation. It's as simple as that. 

Whether new staff will be appointed in the future or not is anyone's guess. That lies with the owner, and I can't say if that will be something that will happen soon. It depends if HoL or Dom find the time to come back. 

Unfortunately, it will just be a waiting game now. But I doubt it will be for any personal reason. 

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facet

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Sneezeonme

I’ve been pretty active posting things and have been wondering why I haven’t at least been ranked as poster if anything. I want to have the same access as other users on here. But I guess I know why now. I hope I don’t have to wait to much longer 

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jejune

The forum has been circling the drain for quite some time now. If you're unvalidated I wouldn't hold your breath, honestly. No new accounts are getting approved either, so it's just going to be all of us here with no new members until/if/when the old admins return (which seems unlikely at this point given their long period of inactivity).

Online communities wax and wane and and it looks like the sun is setting on this one. People have moved to other locales (like tumblr or discord). The end of an era is sad, but at this point it might be time to roll out and head on to greener pastures. Make a new forum, etc. There isn't enough staff on this one to moderate it correctly and that's the kiss of death for a place like this.

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Sneezeonme

That not good to hear I recently joined this forum adter lurking for years. I wanted to meet people with the same interim sneezing as me but now everyone is probably going inactive. I think a new forum would be good but idk if as many people on here are going to join a the new forum. I’ve tried to join another forum (sneezyme.com) but it’s invitational membership only and I have not been invited, also idk how active it is. Personally I didn’t like the layout of tumblr and I’ve never tried discord

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Shay

I'd prefer another forum(hopefully similar in format to this one) as well if this place really does die. I like tumblr for other things, but for fetish stuff I'd find it next to useless for what I'm looking for. Discord is great for just chatting as a replacement for the chatroom that used to be on this site, but it's not really ideal to archive fics, art, etc. It will definitely be sad for me if this place closes down. I've been a member since this place started up which is nearly half of my life.

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Travel

As someone who joined in September, I can't deny that it's disappointing to hear that these might be the twilight years of this forum. I'm all for moving somewhere else like a Discord or even another forum. The problem is that due to the rules here, it's hard to know what would be a good Discord channel to join for something like this since that kind of information is out of place for folks like me who are not validated. Yeah, sure, I could just Google it but I have to say that one thing I like about this forum or at least the impression I get is that its members are very protective of each other, so I know that if someone recommends a place or something, not only is it good but also safe to use. I've peeked into a couple of other communities like this and don't feel the same level of welcome or safety. The irony is that perhaps is the validation system the one that keeps everyone and everything safe, while it's also the thing that could keep someone from knowing of something like a good Discord channel. 

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Shay

As for my Discord, I try to keep it a safe space by piggybacking on the validation system here, and even if I didn't feel the need to do that, it's not possible for me to share a link with unvalidated members. I'm not willing to publicly post a link on Tumblr because someone with another server did that and it was shortly invaded by an army of trolls. If this place goes away and there's no reasonably equivalent forum put in place, then maybe I'll try to come up with some other ways to safely share the link with people, but it would still raise the burden of moderation for myself and Bondi who mods it with me.

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Chanel_no5

IF this place goes away. Don't take out anything in advance. It could simply be a down period, there have been those in the past as well, and it depends on the members, how many are willing and able to help reverse that. Also, I don't think we should sell our current staff short either. They're doing a great job. This is a pretty damn big thing to run and the fewer the staff, the harder the work for each individual. And the other way around; the more members of staff, the less job for each person. 

 

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Reader

In addition to Chanel’s statement, it is true that the owner hasn’t been on here in a long time but he is still faithfully paying the monthly bill for this forum. So we definitely shouldn’t throw the towel in. I’m sure changes will be made in the next coming months. It does depend on us. 

And just a little lesson. The reason why nobody wants all this responsibility on their shoulders is because it’s a thankless job with different members giving staff the stink eye and making life difficult. Even off the forum. So, make sure you start thanking those who are still staff members and helping to run this place. And treat those that have forum authority or will have forum authority better even if you don’t like some decision. Essentially, think twice. 

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doggo

Yeah it does feel a bit like a ghost town which is sad. Yet what can one do. Staffing here is really hard work, the forum is huge and there are so many different kinds of people and interests and things to consider. And with time, everything has gotten more and more complicated. Rules get more complicated. You can't really trust "good faith" because there are always people who just want to break anything they can. I used to do modding for a while back in the day and I can tell you even if by then there was several active staff members, it was too much for me in the long run.

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Guy

I think it's a bit extreme to say that the forum is dying at this point. 

I don't post often, but I've seen dead forums, and this is far from a dead forum. Dead forums lack posts up to weeks, months, years at a time, and are often overrun by spambots. I think as long as the sneezing fetish continues to exist, and this continues to be on the front page of Google, the forum isn't going anywhere (unless there is a failure to pay for it, of course). There are other sneezing forums out there (some are linked on the front page here), and those are far less active than this site, if you want to use those as a comparison for how well this forum is doing.

As for validation, I must say that, like many others, I am unsatisfied with the system. I'm not blaming PuddinPop or any of the other admins, but I feel it's a dated system and things should be reevaluated given the current situation. I don't have a particular suggestion on how to retool it, myself, but there comes a point that, as a long time member that's exceeded the 50 post threshold and has only contributed positively to the forum, that one starts to wonder "Why am I not suitable for validation?". 

Like I said, the system could use a good retooling. Especially when an unvalidated member lacks extremely basic features such as being able to view their own page. I hope things get better, and I sincerely hope the owner doesn't pull the plug on this site, as it contains a mass of stories, obs, and art that have accumulated over the years and, in addition to being a good chunk of fetish material, also serves as a time capsule of sorts for how things have evolved within the community.

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Kaze Wo Hiku
2 hours ago, Reader said:

In addition 

And just a little lesson. The reason why nobody wants all this responsibility on their shoulders is because it’s a thankless job with different members giving staff the stink eye and making life difficult. Even off the forum. So, make sure you start thanking those who are still staff members and helping to run this place. And treat those that have forum authority or will have forum authority better even if you don’t like some decision. Essentially, think twice. 

Thank you for this :heart:

 

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Travel

I hope that nothing I said came off as dismissive of the admins and the like. I greatly admire and respect their work here. I've only been in the forum for a rather short time but it's one of the most respectful and well-mannered communities I've ever been on, especially for something so fetish-oriented. That I'm sure is the result not only of a great community of members but also a great mod team. 

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LeapYearKisses

I do hope this is just a "down" period in the life cycle of the forum.  Tumblr's not a great place for meeting people, since the messaging system sucks.  And they just banned NSFW content, which I know has made some people a bit leery of posting fetish content, even if ours is generally non-sexual visually.  I've had a good time contributing to the forum.  I've been here for almost 9 years, which is CRAZY.  It's hard to contribute a lot when I'm low on creative juice and also not in any shared fandoms, though, and popping in once a week or so as a lurker isn't helping the ghost town problem.

I hope anyone who hasn't been validated doesn't see this as a fault in the community, just as a technical one.  The people who are still here really are some of the nicest people and I've always felt super safe.  I wish I was better friends with almost everyone I've met here, but I'm too awkward. My point is that you can still meet people here with shared interests!

@Kaze wo Hiku @PuddinPopThanks also from me for hanging in there as staff!  It really does take determination and we never see what goes into running the forum.  It's like plumbing: if you don't have to think about it and it's invisible, it's working as intended, but that doesn't mean that there's not a lot going on.

 

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ZakuConvoy
18 hours ago, PuddinPop said:

Staff is in a bit of a predicament at the moment. 

To put it bluntly, there are no active admins. None. I stepped back in after resigning in July, but found I don't have the time to commit to the duties, so will be stepping back down shortly. 

@Enkidom and @High on Lullabies are the only other people capable of permitting validation, and neither of them are active anymore, and from what I've seen, aren't around either. 

So basically, I would just say that it isn't a personal thing. Unless you have any active warnings, there is no reason why your account isn't validated other than the simple reason that there aren't the staff around to approve the validation. It's as simple as that. 

Whether new staff will be appointed in the future or not is anyone's guess. That lies with the owner, and I can't say if that will be something that will happen soon. It depends if HoL or Dom find the time to come back. 

Unfortunately, it will just be a waiting game now. But I doubt it will be for any personal reason. 

Okay...well, I guess it's a good thing I asked.

This probably wouldn't work, but...is there any way you could "deputize" the current Moderators with Admin powers until new Admins are appointed?   I realize that wouldn't be normal, but...exceptional circumstances and all.  As I understand it, only Admins can create more Admins and...you're it. It might help keep the lights on.  (Not sure the Mods would even WANT the power, but...it's the only thing that springs to mind...assuming we even have enough moderators (I can't see the staff page)...)

15 hours ago, Jejune said:

The forum has been circling the drain for quite some time now. If you're unvalidated I wouldn't hold your breath, honestly. No new accounts are getting approved either, so it's just going to be all of us here with no new members until/if/when the old admins return (which seems unlikely at this point given their long period of inactivity).

Online communities wax and wane and and it looks like the sun is setting on this one. People have moved to other locales (like tumblr or discord). The end of an era is sad, but at this point it might be time to roll out and head on to greener pastures. Make a new forum, etc. There isn't enough staff on this one to moderate it correctly and that's the kiss of death for a place like this.

Well...that's incredibly depressing.

If that's actually true, then...is there any argument against just letting anyone in who wants in (and who passed the 50 post mark, since I guess that's probably part of the software?), forget about validation.  If there really is that little time left...

 

And, yeah, I'll thank the hard work of everyone on staff here.  It's a thankless, invisible job.

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Shay
2 minutes ago, ZakuConvoy said:

Well...that's incredibly depressing.

If that's actually true, then...is there any argument against just letting anyone in who wants in (and who passed the 50 post mark, since I guess that's probably part of the software?), forget about validation.  If there really is that little time left...

 

And, yeah, I'll thank the hard work of everyone on staff here.  It's a thankless, invisible job.

Even if this place is on it's way out, and we don't know for sure that it is, we still want it to be a safe environment up until the end rather than undo recent progress.

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