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Old 07-12-2007, 02:21 PM   #1
ShadowPenguin
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Administration problems

Heres a question for you all, What does everyone else do when there is a problem between two members of the Administration of a mud, and it gets trickled down to the players. Where now the players are fighting because they are teaming up with their friends in the administration. How does one keep the administration crap inside the administration. Or does the realm have a right to know of everything that is happening?
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Old 07-12-2007, 02:38 PM   #2
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Re: Administration problems

I expect some disagreement on this, but my personal opinion is there needs to be a single person who is clearly "in charge" of the MUD that handles this quickly.

If the administration members cannot learn to work together regardless of their disagreement, one of them (or both) moves on. Not that imms can't disagree, or even disagree publicly, but it should be in the spirit of open discussion towards improving the MUD and respectful.

There will be exceptions, but look at the MUDs that have been the largest and the most stable over a long period of time - they tend to have a single leader. Not that the leader has to be constantly involved in every detail, but when things flare up between admins there has to be an authority that can jump in and resolve it.
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Old 07-12-2007, 02:50 PM   #3
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Re: Administration problems

Couldn't agree more Lasher with the caveat that there can also be a formalized process for a group to make a decision. For instance, the US Senate manages to occasionally make decisions despite having 100 "leaders" (I use that term almost tongue-in-cheek given whom we're talking about in this case...) because they have a formal process for doing so.

The ultimately untenable situation is when there is no single person in charge and no defined procedure that all parties buy into by which disagreement can be resolved.

--matt
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Old 07-12-2007, 02:51 PM   #4
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Re: Administration problems

But in the end, you're right about the largest MUDs having a single leader. (Simutronics games, Iron Realms games, Aardwolf, etc). I think one exception might be Batmud as I get the idea they're run by a non-profit that has a group of directors, but it's a rare exception.
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Old 07-12-2007, 03:01 PM   #5
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Re: Administration problems

Gotta concur with Lasher and the_logos. Have one person as the final arbiter and deal with the problem (preferably before it turns into a factionalized situation).

I don't think it's a matter of whether players have the right to know everything about drama going on behind the scenes. The simple fact, in my opinion, is they shouldn't. If drama is filtering down into the playerbase, it's effectively poisoning your game. Deal with poison problems as quickly as you can and move on to other business. Hold a special event for morale boosting. Give people something else to focus their attention on instead of idle gossip and drama.
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Old 07-12-2007, 03:24 PM   #6
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Re: Administration problems

Thanks for all the quick responses. Now as a different scenario, What if the issue involves the "leader" and a different imm? Sorry for all the questions, I am start to work my way up the ladder on a newer mud, and just want
to start doing research on problems before they start, if that makes any sense
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Old 07-12-2007, 03:39 PM   #7
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Re: Administration problems

Quote:
Originally Posted by ShadowPenguin View Post
Thanks for all the quick responses. Now as a different scenario, What if the issue involves the "leader" and a different imm? Sorry for all the questions, I am start to work my way up the ladder on a newer mud, and just want
to start doing research on problems before they start, if that makes any sense
I think this is where Thunderdome comes into play: Two men enter, one man leaves.

Ultimately, the leader probably isn't going anywhere. The other imm needs to roll over and show his belly or get gone. It might hurt in the short-term, especially if the staff's not that huge to begin with, but a dysfunctional larger staff can do much more long-term damage to a game than a functional minimalized staff would suffer in the short-term.
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Old 07-12-2007, 03:47 PM   #8
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Re: Administration problems

The Thunderdome, nice analogy!

This is also often the point at which you see MUDs splinter off into two - I've played several MUDs in the past where this happened and generally neither of the two smaller MUDs does that well going forward (again, always exceptions of course).
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Old 07-12-2007, 03:51 PM   #9
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Re: Administration problems

Quote:
Originally Posted by ShadowPenguin View Post
Thanks for all the quick responses. Now as a different scenario, What if the issue involves the "leader" and a different imm? Sorry for all the questions, I am start to work my way up the ladder on a newer mud, and just want
to start doing research on problems before they start, if that makes any sense
You need to specify the "issues". Many issues can be handled in different ways. Some "issues" like different views between staff members about how some feature should work can be good for a game as long as they don't fight about it :-). Sometimes people see issues where there is none .
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Old 07-12-2007, 08:53 PM   #10
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Re: Administration problems

From a player's perspective, I wouldn't want to see my Staff bickering openly. If there is a problem between two Immortals, they should deal with it behind the scenes. Otherwise, as you say, the playerbase is going to split into 'My Favorite Imm Is xxx" factions and effectively poison the game.
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Old 07-12-2007, 09:08 PM   #11
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Re: Administration problems

The two parties need to talk and work things out. Ultimately, the person who owns the MUD's word is law, but hopefully both people can come to a common ground. If not, the best thing for the owner to do would be to kick this disagreeing administrator and move on. Moderators bickering with the players is one of the easiest ways to make a game feel unprofessional and hence not worth playing. Encourage the staff to discuss issues among each other openly, but once people start asking the players to pick sides, you have a big problem.
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