Now this is a small rant of mine but since I'm a new user I'm guaranteed to get maybe -1 or -2 on this post but here I go.

now this is related to New User Experience: Why allow downvotes (esp. below 0) on already closed questions? so read that a bit if you want but on with the rant.

First question I put on RPG.SE I got a negative vote but I got good feedback: How do I deal with a DM who restricts my character options? However I got a -1 so I thought well since I got a good answer I will put [Answered] as to stop people coming and giving negative votes. Only to have the post title edited not even 2 minutes later to remove that.. and then to get another negative vote. That feels like people are setting the bar a bit high. And then there is a reputation system.. like having to get 15 rep in order to vote or 50 rep to comment. To new users like me this is quite a high bar to jump over. the Rep system in general is a good idea it just makes getting into the sites main features quite hard for a new user unless you post several question a day.

And onto the second part which gripes about the dreaded [On Hold] tag. The [On Hold] tag can mean your question may never be answered since no one can post answers. Maybe allowing for answer might be a good idea (since I have come across [On Hold] tag questions that I can easily answer) and add to that one of my other questions got [On Hold] when it was already answered: 5e Striker. What class should I be? [on hold]

so my questions are:

What would be the best way to allow new user to access the site easily ?

What can be done to improve the reputation system ?

What can be done to improve the [On Hold] tag ?

And: What can be done to stop General Shin kicking for new users ?

Disclaimer: This is a open ended discussion and will remain that way until a condition has been met [An Answers idea has been put into use]

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    \$\begingroup\$ Please join us in chat.stackexchange.com/rooms/11/rpg-general-chat if you want to discuss this in real time. \$\endgroup\$ – Joshua Aslan Smith Aug 10 '15 at 17:15
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    \$\begingroup\$ I'll say that the "this is how the site and SE works, this is by design" answers are just cowardice for "We do things our way, we've set SE to work this way, and we won't let it work another way." Other sites in the SE network are much more lax than this. Don't say "that this is How SE works, oh dear, nothing we can do about this." \$\endgroup\$ – Adriano Varoli Piazza Aug 11 '15 at 13:19
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Adriano Feel free to point out factual errors. It's not very useful to vaguely insinuate bad faith and deliberate errors, and much more useful to be specific. \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Aug 11 '15 at 15:32
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    \$\begingroup\$ Nah. I've given up on discussing this. If @SevenSidedDie can't read this thread and find the exact references I mention... I don't have the time. I'm not being vague. Just tired of the attitude. \$\endgroup\$ – Adriano Varoli Piazza Aug 11 '15 at 16:08
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    \$\begingroup\$ Sorry, I may give the impression that I’m all-seeing and never sleep, but I don’t in fact have mind-reading superpowers. \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Aug 11 '15 at 16:19
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    \$\begingroup\$ @SevenSidedDie so you now feel like how new user feel when the get negative votes on their question and no one says what is wrong or when a question gets put [On Hold] but you don't get anyone saying why. Anyway it's best to use the loop hole in the site if you want to ask questions(on RPG.SE only). \$\endgroup\$ – Pallas Aug 11 '15 at 16:32
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Pallas No, I don't really feel like that here. I'm actually gently dressing down Adriano for being passive-aggressive, assuming bad faith, and making vague accusations without the courage to say who and what. Besides, you didn't ask what is wrong with the question. You asked whether RPG.se could be changed. As for loopholes, if you mean asking question you know will be put on hold, hoping an answer sneaks in before holding, the system will actually block your account from asking more questions if you do that often enough, so it's not a loophole at all. Feel free to use the non-loophole. \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Aug 11 '15 at 17:22
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Pallas There's no rule against doing that to avoid reputation loss, because you also avoid reputation gain that way. There's literally no advantage to doing that, which is why there's no rule against sockpuppets. So long as they behave themselves like any other anon, we don't actually care. (When they misbehave, we have sockpuppet detection software to deal with such users and their socks.) So go ahead, but I don't see the point. \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Aug 11 '15 at 17:39
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    \$\begingroup\$ If you would focus on actually listening/watching how we do things here instead of just raging against the machine and trying to find workarounds, you'll probably have a better experience and get more of what you want out of the site. You are jumping to crazy stuff (now I want to sockpuppet!) without understanding at all how anything works here. \$\endgroup\$ – mxyzplk Aug 11 '15 at 18:47
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Pallas I don't know why you would think questions from anons won't get closed for the same reasons questions from full accounts do. And you also seem to believe that it's against the rules to answer your own question; it isn't (actually it's encouraged), so there's no need to pretend to be someone else when doing so. As mxyzplk says, time spent trying to cleverly exploit non-existent loopholes is probably better spent instead on levelling your site-using skill; either that, or find a site you don't hate? \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Aug 11 '15 at 19:13
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Pallas The reputation system doesn't do that, because it's asymmetrical: upvotes are worth more than downvotes. Even users with a record of poor answers go up in rep over time. And you are a long way from holding the record for worst question, never fear. Ironically then, your plan is solving a problem that doesn't exist, and will actually result in getting rep slower than just doing things like normal. We won't stop you from trying, but it doesn't make much sense. \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Aug 11 '15 at 20:12
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    \$\begingroup\$ Stupid questions aren't even a problem. We get questions someone might think are stupid all the time. Unclear or difficult isn't a problem either—they get fixed. You saw fixing attempted on that question. Normally it works—it only didn't in this case because the rules of a game that blends 3.5e and 5e are necessary to know to answer it, and unless you bring you DM here, those aren't available to help fix the question. It's not a personal or moral failure, it's just that we can't read your DM's mind from here. (Our mind-reading range is limited to 30 metres.) \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Aug 11 '15 at 20:42
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    \$\begingroup\$ Don't worry about the votes; votes on Meta don't count for anyone's rep. We generally don't delete posts on request. The thing to do is to just ignore it until it gets forgotten about. \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Aug 11 '15 at 20:45
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    \$\begingroup\$ That's not how site quality is achieved. Thanks for the concern, but it's not necessary or even desirable to delete questions with downvotes. \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Aug 11 '15 at 20:52
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    \$\begingroup\$ Most of your reputation was actually lost when you deleted your posts, since those had a few upvotes on them. Every upvote on an answer is worth five downvotes in terms of rep, so deleting those was a lot of rep erased very quickly. You'll earn more, just like you got it in the first place, by posting questions and answers that are upvoted by even just a few other users, even if they get downvotes too. \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Aug 11 '15 at 22:51

I'm going to add a second answer that gets to the real problem you have. You think your problem is that everyone's being mean and closing your question. The real problem is that your question is incoherent and not able to be answered.

I agree that at its heart your question is a "type 2" charop question, so it has the capacity to be valid. If your question really was "What's a good direction for a 5e build that has high dps and uses halberds" we could probably answer that well.

However, the experienced users of the site picked up on the context cues that you don't really know what you're asking. This isn't necessarily all your fault, but it's clearly the case.

  1. 5e! (and now maybe using 3.5e in it?) But asked using a mishmash of 5e, 4e, and 3e terminology. This was a warning sign that either you were super confused or that y'all are playing an undefined variant of all these versions- turns out the latter is the case. If you guys are playing Calvinball D&D it's really hard for anyone to make constructive suggestions - God only knows what actual rules your group is using, and how the question's developed makes us think you're not totally sure either.

  2. "I want to take on something CR20 at level 8" "but I don't want to be overpowered, like by being able to hit something of my CR + 5" - Besides not being correct for 5e, as SSD pointed out this is mathematically impossible. You keep changing the wording on this clause (now it's hp of damage! now it's something else!), but not in a way that makes us think you really know what you're asking, it seems pretty random.

  3. We don't know what rules you are using. We don't know what kind of threats your DM uses really because "CR20 werespider vs level 8!" doesn't pass the sniff test; no one that level survives against a real CR20. Which means the information we're getting is wrong or the DM is playing Calvinball too (seems likely).

  4. You don't want to outshine the other party members - which we know nothing about, or their general optimization level. So we really can't help you there. Are these guys waving around Blackrazor playing 3.5e Uber Optimized Pounce Barbarians, or are they just rolling 5e default?

It seems to us that:

  1. The DM may not even be sure what rules they're using, and/or rules may not matter a lot in that game.
  2. You are therefore not sure either, I think. You are also not communicating very clearly.
  3. As a result we don't know enough to answer. Maybe we will if the communication issue gets cleared up, but it's seeming unlikely.

This isn't necessarily bad. People don't have to play a "real version" - my first D&D game I was in was in the back of a car going to Scout camp and we didn't even use dice, the DM just made up whatever was fun and kept us engaged. There's nothing wrong with that playstyle. But, it does make it very difficult for us to help with a question about it that is kinda a rules question but then the rules are unclear. Also, you need to practice taking a step back, thinking about your problem and how someone who does not live in your brain might need context information to answer effectively, and try to do that when composing questions.

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    \$\begingroup\$ -1 I don't care if the question closes. since i got an answer before it happened. second i said halberds and other under used weapons in similar words. and also I'm closing all of my questions. sticking to answering what I can to get rep. And so I don't have to talk too much to the community. it feels as toxic as some MOBA community. All of this closing will happen when I wake up. also if i could double negative for being patronizing. \$\endgroup\$ – Pallas Aug 11 '15 at 3:39
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    \$\begingroup\$ Posting in your sleep might be part of the coherence problem. Asking people to "use their words" is not elitist, it's how you enable people to effectively help you. \$\endgroup\$ – mxyzplk Aug 11 '15 at 3:44
  • \$\begingroup\$ again don't care about that. got feed back I got constructive criticism. so all in all its just I have gotten to the point where the "meh" part of my brain kicks in so effect I have gotten what I have wanted learned some new stuff so that ends in a neutral other than other things but as I said meh. \$\endgroup\$ – Pallas Aug 11 '15 at 3:48
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Pallas The thing is, you didn't get a very good answer. Knowing 5e, and 3.5e, and now knowing just a bit about the game this will be used in... that answer isn't going to help you. If it could have been a clear question, you'd have gotten more answers, and one of them would have certainly been better than the single one there. Yeah, you got feedback, but your party of 3.5e classes will vastly outclass your 5e barbarian, so don't be too comfy just because you got an answer. Consulting with your friend in the group should find something that will actually keep up with them. \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Aug 11 '15 at 19:32

First thing, I have to say right off that none of these things are under our power to change. The software is designed that way, and RPG.se doesn't have control over the software. I will attempt to explain why they work the way they do, though.

So there will be no answer that is put into use, because RPG.se can't change the things you've brought up. (The place to propose change to SE network software is Meta.StackExchange.com, but as will become clear, these three things aren't up for negotiation anyway.)

Reputation is functioning as intended

The reputation system is a gatekeeper: only users who have learned how to contribute to the main purpose of the site earn access to things that are not the main purpose of the site. Anyone can ask questions and post answers, even anonymous users. Users have to figure out how to do those two things according to RPG.se's goals before they get access to any other abilities, and that's very deliberate. The Stack Exchange model strongly emphasises asking and answering questions, so only users who have figured out how to do that in the way SE needs can unlock more privileges.

Held questions are functioning as intended

The point of a question being on hold is to prevent answers. That's 100% the point of it. There will never be an option to answer questions that are on hold.

Holding (and closing) questions exists because Stack Exchange specialises in only certain kinds of questions. Any question that is looking for discussion or opinions is off topic, because the point of Stack Exchange is to handle questions that have solutions, not discussion or argument. SE was invented to do what discussion forums do poorly (solve problems), and will never be altered to try to handle what discussion forums already do very well already (general discussion, brainstorming, and opinion sharing). When people submit questions that don't fit they get put on hold permanently.

The question you mention, https://rpg.stackexchange.com/questions/66908/5e-striker-what-class-should-i-be, is on hold because it's asking for ideas. It will stay held, and in four more days it will graduate to [closed] instead of [on hold].

However, it will remain votable. The purpose of votes is to sort questions, and held questions still need sorting. Votes give or take away reputation for the post owner, because that's part of the point of the reputation system: useful questions are rewarded with positive reputation, and the kinds of questions that RPG.se doesn't want people to ask more of are rewarded with negative reputation.

General shin kicking either gets better or worse, depending on the user's choices

The shin kicking isn't actually kicking. It's more like someone walking into a thorny bush and suffering the scratches that naturally causes. Getting ripped by thorn bushes stops happening when users notice there are signs marking the path, and stop walking off the path into the thorn bushes. The thorn bushes exist to protect the sensitive parts of the site, which if walked on, would eventually destroy the site's usefulness and reason for existence.

New users generally don't already know that walking over there causes damage. Also, because most other places on the internet let people walk there, new users here often assume they can walk there here too. We have a tour and help centre that says “don't walk over there, please stay on the paths, thank you,” but there are always 10 people who don't read that for every one who does, and of those who do read them, full understanding of their implications is rarely automatic. The negative reinforcement of the reputation system is to enforce the rules and protect the site, whether people have read the rules or not, and in general to teach the practical application of the rules.

A new user who keeps on running into the negative reputation effects (walking into the thorn bushes) is causing a problem for the site: they're not following the rules or purpose of the site. Rather than suffer the problem though, the site makes that user responsible for solving the problem: it lets the user decide when they've had enough thorns. When a user decides they've had enough thorns, they do one of two things:

  1. Leave

    The site is okay with this, because what the site is doing is very specific and is not what everyone is looking for. If someone personally doesn't work well with both negative and positive feedback, they won't like it here and leaving is the right choice. Similarly, if someone has mistaken RPG.se for a discussion site, they should go elsewhere, because discussion sites are elsewhere.

  2. Adjust

    The site is okay with this too. A user to adjusts how they use the site until they start getting positive feedback has started using the site for what it was designed for. That's an improvement in the site's goals and purpose.

It's like learning to skateboard: when you fall it hurts, and when something hurts you learn to stop doing it. To stop falling, you either by giving up learning to skateboard entirely, or get better enough at skateboarding so you don't fall very often anymore.

In conclusion

The held status and reputation system are functioning exactly as intended. They worked to make you do something different: post here! You decided to adjust a little bit, instead of leaving.

That means that you have another chance of learning how the site works and what it expects from users. You also know more now that RPG.se isn't designed to make everyone happy or be used for everything related to RPGs; it's designed to attract people who want to work with its system, and be unattractive to those who aren't interested in doing what it aims to do. It's not the only place for RPG stuff online and purposefully doesn't try to be.

Now you have some context for understanding why holds, negative reputation, and a bumpy ride for new users exist, and if those goals sound worthy to you, you'll adjust a bit more to accept them as a necessary evil outweighed by the good they do. If not, you might be closer to deciding that what RPG.se really is about isn't what you were actually looking for, now that you know a bit more about what RPG.se is for. Either way, the site moves that tiny bit closer to being in harmony with its purpose and the users who help it get there.

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    \$\begingroup\$ So just reading this answer sounds like the typical "suck it up, eat a spoonful of cement, Deal with it!" sort of answer that well doesn't do anything. Also my question: 5e Striker. What class should I be? on hold whilst to others is may seem like a discussion or vague it isn't. lets put it this way if some one answered with "be a cleric" they would be down voted. to sum that question up it's a "What is suitable for this role?" question. For a better answer look at Joshua's answer. \$\endgroup\$ – Pallas Aug 10 '15 at 19:01
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Pallas There is some truth to that. If this sounds like "eat some cement and learn to like it" to someone, then that someone is never going to enjoy skateboarding. If you can't be at peace with the bedrock of how the site works, the site may not be for you. As for the question: the community has judged that question to have an unclear problem. To fix it, heed that: clarify what is causing you difficulty in answering the question yourself, so that the community knows what problem they're supposed to solve. \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Aug 10 '15 at 19:17
  • \$\begingroup\$ and as a parry and riposte: whilst you have put "heed that: clarify what is causing you difficulty in answering the question yourself, so that the community knows what problem they're supposed to solve." some will not know since the question might be perfectly clear to them but others may view it as vague: "Yes, can the folks closing as unclear clarify what they want clarified? In general it's the "general direction" type of on topic charop question per meta.rpg.stackexchange.com/questions/1639/… " like my question. To me it was clear. to some others it was clear. to 5 people it was vague. \$\endgroup\$ – Pallas Aug 10 '15 at 19:46
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Pallas That kind of clarification should go into the question. It doesn't do much good here. Editing the question is often necessary to get voters with close/reopen vote privileges to consider using their votes. \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Aug 10 '15 at 20:55
  • \$\begingroup\$ as soon as I posted that comment I edit the question. So if I wake up tomorrow and its deleted I will be mythed that no one put "This is what needs to be clarified" (although as long as its before 3am GMT I will do it whilst I'm awake) \$\endgroup\$ – Pallas Aug 10 '15 at 21:00
  • \$\begingroup\$ Oh to add to that the whole talk about quality of users and answers. 5e Striker the 5 users who voted on hold probably did not look into meta questions to do with the subject like Are character optimization questions on topic? Whilst I did and was aiming for the second type of question in the first answer. \$\endgroup\$ – Pallas Aug 10 '15 at 21:09
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Pallas I really urge you to read how the site works in the help centre. Saying the hold voters (which requires 3000 rep) don't know what they're doing is not going to be taken seriously while showing a lack of grasp of the system. Sometimes people just disagree. Here: five voters can hold a question, and they have no responsibility to justify it. Equally, five more can vote to un-hold it (and lack of justification from the first five can make that more likely to happen). Here is the help centre panel about disagreeing with a hold vote. \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Aug 10 '15 at 21:15
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    \$\begingroup\$ True talking about it here gets nowhere so most likely in the morning in going to delete both questions my self (I don't know if it will effect the +tive rep I have gained but oh well) \$\endgroup\$ – Pallas Aug 10 '15 at 21:33

First let me say welcome to RPG.SE. In general a lot of the issues you've brought up have to do not only with RPG.SE's guidelines but overall guidelines followed by just about every site on stackexchange. I'll try to address each issue individually, but as a holistic approach I would simply say that Stackexchange expects a user to learn about how the site works and adjust their behavior to fit in and handles that by the privilege system and distributed user rights allowing the community to self-police its actions and users.

On Hold is less a tag for users and applied after the fact when a question is put on hold by a vote of 5 users (with the rights) or a diamond mod. Questions are put on hold because they do not meet the quality and content guidelines for the site. When a question is on hold no new answers can be given for it until it is reopened. On hold is used to help improve questions without low quality answers coming in until the question itself is high quality. It also is the state a question will be in if it is deemed not an appropriate fit for the site and will remain so until deleted by the user or a moderator.

Downvotes are not a judgement on you personally but on the quality of the question itself. Downvotes are a tool for the community to encourage you to improve or delete the question as a way of maintaining and improving the overall quality of the site.

In general if you are looking for information both the tour page and the help page contain a wealth of information to help new users. Hitting those low rep privileges is actually easier than you think since a question upvote is worth 5 points and an answer upvote worth 10.


See Can we improve the way we treat newcomers? for a discussion about putting questions on hold, and the tag for previous discussions of all your points. The short form is that:

  1. The rep system is working as designed - you earn rep by knowing how to do things in our way, and then you get to do more things. These boundaries exist because new users don't know how we do things, and won't learn without some guidance.

  2. Closing questions is working as designed - we have specifically decided (we here and SE in general) that putting questions on hold while they are fixed up, rather than dealing with the resulting bad/confusing answer storm from leaving them open, is the right way to do it.

  3. Everyone can do a better job of being more welcoming to new users - welcome them, point out what they could do to improve, link them to the help center/relevant meta/whatever. It's easier to learn the rules and be happy if someone helps you.

However, in general this isn't a "do what you want" forum. To maintain our super-high quality we have rules so that we don't turn into the other things out there. If you want to blabber aimlessly go to Reddit, if you want hugs and personal validation go to Tumblr, if you want well curated clear answers to clear on topic questions, come here. So we should help new users learn the rules, but we are not interested in scrapping the rules.

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    \$\begingroup\$ I will say this I am not for scrapping the rules. I'm saying somethings can be improved like [On Hold] which be improved with one of the voters or the admin saying why it was unclear and what could be improved. \$\endgroup\$ – Pallas Aug 10 '15 at 20:01
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    \$\begingroup\$ Yeah that's what I said too. \$\endgroup\$ – mxyzplk Aug 10 '15 at 20:14

The "Shin Kicking" Happens To Induce Us To Ask Good Questions

Pallas, I am a fairly new user and had to do a bit of work (trial and error) to figure out how to ask a good question and how to draft a decent answer. (Even so, an answer I wrote last week was deleted by the mods ... so it goes). If we have 'forum' habits from years of interacting on forums, there's bit of cultural adaptation to get the most out of this site.

The question you have on hold looks like a character optimization question. A good optimization question needs to meet certain criteria. The quote below is from the best answer to a meta question on character optimization. It got 18 votes: no other answer got even close, so there's some good guidance there.

Please open the links in that question for each case, 1, 2, 3. This should help you see what a good optimization question looks like. If you can reshape your question to get into a better form, it may get taken off of hold and get more than one answer.

There are 3 types of char-op questions that fall into the "good" category:

  1. I'm 90% complete and I need help making the final selection or two.

  2. I need some general advice on direction for a build.

  3. The last kind of question that I see as useful is the challenge question. These are the most borderline Op questions IMO, but they can also be the most fun.

Have you ever heard the adage "there are no bad questions?" I've heard that in the work place, in safety meetings, at church, many places.

Well, there are bad questions here.

  • \$\begingroup\$ I understand that and by the way my question is the second type since I am new to 5e and I am looking for general direction to fitting into the striker role. \$\endgroup\$ – Pallas Aug 10 '15 at 22:37
  • \$\begingroup\$ @pallas OK, hopefully, with the further comments and assistance, you can see how the question gets the arrow which reads (when you mouse over it) "this question does not show any research effort, is unclear, or is not useful." That is what the down votes indicate: any of those three things, or a combination. (Best of luck in that game in any case). \$\endgroup\$ – KorvinStarmast Aug 11 '15 at 3:29

I'm really new to this, but I've seen several issues with the implementation. I tend to agree with @Pallas, even though I understand where the established users are coming from (in most cases).

  1. Human beings are not interchangeable cogs, and many human beings do not understand this reality. The way I think, the way I process things, the ways in which I formulate my thoughts, is not the same as other people. In fact, it helps me immensely to kind of talk out my thoughts, and it's especially helpful if I can debate them with someone else. When I do this, I'm not debating to prove you wrong, I'm trying to figure out if I'm right. In your personal way of doing things, this might be viewed as argumentative, or pushy, or arrogant, but if you were truly unbiased, you'd realize I'm posting a concept, and then trying to get others to poke holes in it so I can correct the errors. I'm sure gaps exist, but I need outside help to fill them.
  2. There is definitely a certain kind of personality type that is attracted to a moderator role on a Q&A group such as this one. That personality type is diametrically opposed to mine. If the local regulars are already saturated with that type, I'm probably going to drop out after a very short time. Thus, the entire system is a self-licking ice cream cone. You only get more of your own kind. Some of you sit back and think to yourself, Good. I don't like you people anyway. That's fine by me, except you've advertised yourself as something else, when what you really are is an echo chamber.
  3. In terms of the On Hold system, I've run into several (5 in 2 days) instances of a question that's On Hold that I thought I could resolve quite quickly. I read the question and thought, Sure, there's a relatively simple solution to this. But I couldn't answer, because the user(s) who put it on hold couldn't think outside of that particular type of box.

Frankly, this is why I left Reddit after just a few weeks. The dogpiling, the downvoting to hide unpopular ideas, the forum sliding. Maybe this is where the internet naturally goes for people like me. Emotionally, it's tough. I feel like I have a lot to contribute. I don't mind conforming to most of the rules, even the ones I think are a knee-jerk reaction to something stupid. It's the rest of the community that's my problem. Your biases are doubleplus good, and mine are wrongthink, Comrades. Yours don't really exist, because they're shared by your like-minded friends who have accumulated the larger amounts of rep, just like you. My biases are unacceptable, because they grate on you, not necessarily because they actually violate a rule or have hurt another user.

This isn't a diatribe. It's my experience. I'm not angry about anything. Honestly, it's disappointing and disheartening more than anything. As I'm typing this I'm pretty sure I'm going to end up out of another online community again. Every time I feel like I've found a cool community where I might share some ideas and get some good ones in return, I find out that the personality differences make me incompatible with the community, and I might as well leave now instead of trying to change the culture, because it's firmly entrenched.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Actually, your ideas and biases are perfectly fine. The conflict isn't a community one—it's actually that this site is designed to eliminate discussion and dialogue. That's because discussion & dialogue is abundantly served online already, by various discussion forums. SE was created explicitly to eliminate discussion, so that it could do something that discussion forums were poor at—surfacing the best answer(s) to clear questions. The design goal was to enable future readers to quickly find the existing solutions to their problems—something discussion forums do really, really poorly. \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Mar 30 '18 at 21:39
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    \$\begingroup\$ So no, your biases are fine. It's just that this site is a very specific tool that appears to not be what you're looking for. This site might be a calibrated torque wrench, when what you're looking for is a burr grinder. It's perfectly OK to be interested in something this site can't do for you. It's not surprising if it's disappointing, for not being what you hoped it was. There's no community self-reinforcement here—the causality goes the other way, with the site's design enforcing certain community activity. \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Mar 30 '18 at 21:42
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    \$\begingroup\$ If you were hoping this was a discussion forum, instead of a specialised no-dialogue Q&A site, there are lots of RPG discussion forums. We've curated a list of them, since people mistaking this for a discussion site happens frequently. You might take a look at our list to see how many existing discussion sites are available. (One of them is our own chat room, since our chat rules don't prohibit discussion, unlike the main site's rules.) \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Mar 30 '18 at 21:45

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