WIPs thread should not automatically close for the lack of new comments in two months

It seems to hurt the authors who have WIP by having their thread automatically close for inactivity in two months. It just discourages them to continue working on them when they are closed. And just because there is inactivity in two months doesn’t mean that there will be no new ones after that. I know people might say, “oh just tell the moderator to open it then” but do people really bother doing that? One might be prompted to make a comment on a thread but after finding out it’s closed, they most likey won’t bother asking moderators to open them. This is just kills further conversation and motivation of authors.

17 Likes

I’m pretty sure that if I were an author and I had a code/writing update, calling a mod or a leader would be one of my first action.
The two months (wich are a lot in terms of inactivity) policy is meant to avoid spam and extra work for moderators

15 Likes

Yes. Authors actually contact moderators to have their Thread open. The closing is automatic, so people don’t necro an old WIP that has been abandoned (I assume).

Regardless, this way it makes it neat and clean.

Because some peoples get busy with life, or social media (They update over there, but forget to update anyone over here. It can happen).

Shrug Don’t remember hearing anyone complain about this…

19 Likes

We do get plenty of requests to reopen threads from authors and are very happy to do it! It isn’t intended as any sort of punishment for anyone; more to keep things tidy, current, and avoid necroposting or “is this still active” comments.

26 Likes

Authors can be proactive with moderators dealing with their WiP threads as well.

Here are a few common things moderators can help an author with:

  • Asking to close the WiP thread when they know there will be inactivity for whatever reason
  • Talking to a mod when the system software goes bonkers and locks them out of editing their original posts
  • Asking for help when shipping wars or other disruptions occur

The moderator team actually likes helping authors succeed, so when there is something we can do to help, we are happy to do so.

20 Likes

Personally, I think the whole thing is dumb and arbitrary and seems to only affect WIPs as the other types of threads can be necro’d even years later.

And why is it two months and not, say, a year? Or one month? Seems random. :person_shrugging:

I think it would’ve made way more sense to let the authors themselves decide whether to close their threads or not instead of doing so automatically.

6 Likes

That’s not arbitrary (though whether it’s dumb is a matter of opinion).

WIP threads are just different to other threads. There are a lot more of them, and when they go dormant, 95% of the time it’s because that WIP is never going to go anywhere.

From a forum management perspective, letting people respond to non-WIP topics from a few years back keeps people in touch with what’s already been discussed. Especially on perennial issues like gender-variable NPCs, save games, beta testing, etc. that can save everyone some time and repetition.

Letting people necro dormant WIP threads (other than the author) just isn’t the same thing. It would add a lot of forum traffic focused on dead and incomplete projects, rather than inviting people to contribute to live ones.

Maybe the discussions around some dormant WIPs would still be worthwhile–you could argue that. Some beloved unfinished WIPs are rich enough in their incomplete state to still be worth talking about. But even if you think that, it’s wildly overstating your case to call the WIP-non WIP distinction “arbitrary.”

Edit: the two month cutoff is kind of arbitrary, in that six weeks or three months would have pretty much the same effect. If it were a year, we’d have a lot more forum energy spent on dead projects; I don’t think the difference between 2 mo and 1 yr is arbitrary, though reasonable people could disagree with the judgment involved.

4 Likes

It’s not a zero-sum game – people can be interested in both old and new projects alike.

I meant arbitrary in reference to the two-month deadline, though it can also be applied to the WIP threads specifically being targeted, though I would describe it as unnecessary rather than arbitrary.

What’s wrong with that?

People being able to share their views on a WIP is the whole point of those threads. Even if the project is abandoned, people may still read it and have thoughts on it that they would like to share. Where else would they go?

This is the crux of the issue – the main purpose of the WiP thread is to connect authors that want to publish under the Hosted Games label with a part of the audience of Hosted Games in a convenient and accessible manner.

I think we can agree on this; it is stated thus in Hosted Games publishing requirements after all.

When a person decides to spend their time on an abandoned project, that precludes the time being spent on an active author’s project.

This denies an author who is actively working towards publication, in favor of one that may or may not be working towards publication.

Feedback is a resource that is limited; often with diminishing returns.

The energy and effort expended on an active project will help an author make the goal of publishing. The same energy and effort expended on an abandoned, or even inactive project, may or may not.

Feedback does not have to be a zero-sum game to be a resource best directed to active authors.

12 Likes

That is a wild assumption to make. That abandoned project may be the only thing keeping that person on the forum so there is no guarantee that if the old thread is closed they will be interested in another project. (and let’s not forget that a project not being updated for two months does not necessarily mean it has been abandoned)

Also, things like tags and filters exist, helping people find projects they might be interested in. Most WIP threads also put the date of the most recent update in the title, indicating that they are still being worked on.

It’s the author’s job to make their project appealing to the readers, not the forum’s. And by that logic, you can make an argument that the threads belonging to the most popular WIPs take away potential readers from other, less popular projects.

That statement sounds pretty concerning coming from a moderator. I don’t agree with the idea of “directing” where the readers’ feedback goes. That should be for them to decide, not for you.

3 Likes

The forum beta tests are directed by Hosted Games under the publishing rules.

and

Inactive and abandoned projects are not completing their public beta test. After 2 months, Hosted Games considers these beta tests to be suspended until there is further clarity given by the author.

I agree, they do.

This is a problem that those not receiving the feedback they need will need to try to overcome.

This is a discussion for another topic and maybe one I will address in a future Writer’s Support Thread

Perhaps, you, as an experienced author can help others succeed by starting a thread that gives such pointers and advise.

You are correct, that the responsibility is on the author to succeed; Hosted Game’s responsibility is to try to make the public beta tests as successful as they can, so the author meets their responsibility.

Part of Hosted Games meeting that responsibility is to separate the inactive/lapsed/abandoned projects from the active and currently beta testing projects.

Time and resources being finite for testing is not an assumption. It is a quantifiable fact that leads to resources going one place vs another.

Getting feedback is a complicated affair. This thread is not the place to discuss this, unfortunately.

There are no guarantees with a testing pool. That is something most, if not all, creators learn quite fast.

11 Likes

Geez, relax will you.

no it is not.

Some peoples can be interested in only certain genre. You ever heard of that before?

‘I only like Horror games, I only like Romance games, I only like RPG…etc etc’.

Guarantee? of course there is none. But you can help the situation by creating guidelines to curb the behavior toward what one wants.

Think of it like this: You as an author, you really don’t need to interact with your fans. Do you? based on what and how you think, technically all you have to do is open a WIP thread and work on it. Do nothing more, and success should happen on it’s own. Roll the dice and all that.

Yet, you do more. You open social medias, you open ASK and so on. Why? because you want to capitalize on the fans who are reading your WIP. You want them to come back, ask you questions, test your demo, tell you they found an error…

All of that? Helpful to you. You don’t even pay for it.

Yet, you don’t need it. You could do it all by yourself, since when you host your game? those fans? They don’t get a cut. They only get to BUY your product and nothing more.

Yes and no. They work hand in hand.

Yes its an author job to make their work appealing, but the forum exist also to help the author and fans to connect.

Sad but it has been proven to exist.

You are aware that is how the world work, right?

Fair enough, but that is really how the world work.

1 Like

I’m aware, and I disagree with that publishing requirement.

Plus, it does not justify closing old threads. Otherwise, one can argue that any non-WIP thread is a distraction for potential beta testers and therefore should be closed.

That’s why tags exist, therefore there’s no need for closing old threads.

I haven’t done any of that, personally. Not sure how that’s relevant.

The forum readers don’t need “guidelines” or to have their behavior “curbed”. This isn’t a kindergarten.

Old WIP threads being open does not prevent that.

Moderators are not some sort of force of nature and things don’t have to be this way at all.

1 Like

yeah, sure. Give them more work…lol

Actually, they do.

And since this is a Private Business, when you registered an account, you agreed to the rules. Therefore, as a Private Business, they can do whatever they want.

They can lock, or ban anyone they want.

I don’t know why you are blaming the moderators for. They didn’t create the rules.

They are Enforcer of said rules, but they didn’t create them.

If you are not happy, you are welcome to send a complain to COG. I’m pretty sure their e-mail is floating somewhere.

But don’t take it on the Moderator or Eiwynn.

5 Likes

It does, and this is where we may have to agree to disagree.

@ everyone – let us all keep the focus on the 2 month closure timer issue and let all the other stuff go by.

We don’t need to turn anything personal here :revolving_hearts:

8 Likes

Tags are chosen by the authors, not moderators.

Why?

Yes, and I can express my disagreement with their policies.

Ah, so they’re just “following orders”? Gotcha.

I’m not targeting anyone in particular. I simply disagree with the policy of closing WIP threads after merely two months of inactivity.

This discussion feels like it’s escalated quickly. I promise the moderators don’t have an agenda about this other than keeping the forum up to date and tidy.

From author perspective, I would urge authors with auto closed threads who want them reopened to contact us. You don’t have to have updated your game to do that, just send a message.

From player perspective, if you have comments for authors about a WIP that’s auto closed, you can message the author to let them know or ask them to have the thread reopened.

I don’t personally think the 60 days restriction is excessive but I understand disagreeing about it. Still, I hope that it’s clear what to do if there’s an issue.

7 Likes

About 3 to 6 months (slightly longer than the 60 day limit at the low end) with no word from the author (exception: once it’s submitted for the HG queue) is when I lose interest in a WIP anyway, or at least don’t think that it will ever reach completion no matter how stellar the extant WIP is (and therefore I turn my feedback and support to things that I’ll get to see completed). And as I spend more time on the forum, nothing’s really occurred that would push me to reconsider, so I’m inclined to agree with the current thread-closure policy.

6 Likes