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Discussion Starter #1
Just a heads up to new fishkeepers. Some 'experienced' fishkeepers may not do water changes at all, advocate not using conditioner properly or not using conditioner at all.
BUT BEWARE THAT NOT USING CONDITIONER PROPERLY IS RISKY!
As I think Byron pointed out, some municipalities use more chlorine/chloramine than others, sometimes rates increase dramatically under certain circumstances (broken pipe repairs) or times of the year. Some folks have water that isn't even chlorinated at all.
Some folks have just let water sit out and/or agitated because chlorine readily dissipates, however chloramine does not and more and more municipalities have switched (or are switching) to chloramine because it's more effective.

When in doubt, using a conditioner properly by following the manufacturers directions better ensures your fish will not suffer.
Interesting post you have here, does this 'experience' you speak of come with the 'super moderator status' or can everyone obtain it? My intent here is not to be rude, well actually, it is. Lately I have seen nothing but a one-way street when it comes to a majority of the moderators here and if you were regular members, we wouldn't be having this discussion. You are moderators, you are hired to moderate the community and most of all be open minded instead of bias. It is very rare that I see a moderator who will openly accept the advice of a regular member and promptly correct when necessary.

I see nothing but "my way is the right way" when it comes to a majority of these 'experienced' 'moderators' here and frankly it's why I have been less active, sure you don't care, but that's not what I'm aiming for. I have received relatively good advice from some members of the moderation team, don't get me wrong, I absolutely enjoy the company of a few members of that select group, some not so much.

I'm quite confident this post will be removed (actually I am 101% positive it will), but I know at least that it will be read by the removing moderator and I'm quite certain it will have no impact on how anything is done around here, but that's not what a rant is for, right?

See ya.
 

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Without naming names, this is not the way to discuss this..

Can you explain the issues that you feel required you to make this post. Has this been something you have noticed on several posts?

We are here to "help" the forum grow, not cause members to be irate which seems to be the case on certain things.
 

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Without naming names, this is not the way to discuss this..

Can you explain the issues that you feel required you to make this post. Has this been something you have noticed on several posts?

We are here to "help" the forum grow, not cause members to be irate which seems to be the case on certain things.
Would you prefer I name who I feel is incapable of posting in a non-bias manner? This is a private forum so I would like to hope my opinion here is not held against me in regards to posting in the public forums.

My issue here is quite simple Neil, I have observed on numerous occasions that a moderator will contradict the advice of a regular member even though the advice is pretty much the same, just done using a different method.

Let me explain how I see this. A moderator is the MOST influential person on the forum, this is a great thing and also a very very dangerous one. When you have new aquarium hobbyist jumping out of the gate, they come to forums such as this to obtain advice. Naturally the advice of a moderator is going to be upheld over the regular member since in most eyes it is conceived to be that the moderator was trusted enough to be a moderator, therefore the advice must be the golden egg hidden in the grass somewhere.

I'm not interested in have a pissing match with any moderator here, public, nor private. I have been here long enough that the community itself has grown on me and I enjoy being a part of it, but if I have to consistently watch moderators throw their community under the bus, I will have no problem looking elsewhere.

You have very experienced regular members that love to give advice, but when they are caught between a heated debate with a moderator (one of whom provokes it) they will be discouraged from giving advice again in the future, I've seen it happen on here several times.

I'm not going to go back and take notes on all of the times the moderation team has jumped the gun, it's not really something I need to spend my time doing. I know for a fact that some of the moderation team has experienced this on multiple occasions and some of you are well aware of what goes on, but you stand idly by and allow it.

Hope this sums it up.
 

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First, let me say I'm a member first and a moderator second. My primary role is to assist members in fishkeeping. I never throw any moderator weight around. I was not 'hired' and I receive no salary or benefits.

I stand by my post warning new hobbyists about conditioning water.
The OP uses Prime and has been using buckets for water changes and wants to switch to a Python like device, but is not sure when to add conditioner.
A few say before the refill, one says after and a couple suggest not using conditioner at all....with no regard or knowledge of the status of the OP's source water.

I believe it would be a shame, not to mention a terrible reflection on the forum if the OP followed the advice of a couple of members, didn't bother using conditioner and lost fish as a result.

We have a few members that advocate never, ever doing partial water changes. Some advocate "over filtering" with more powerful filter pumps as the path to water purity. One member claimed to be a biologist but argued that there was no beneficial biology in the substrate and it was all in the filter. One member once told another member s/he didn't need conditioner, then came back several posts later and apologized saying he forgot he had a non-chlorinated well?! We have a fairly new member that answers every other post like an expert when he's only had a tank for a month or two.

Whenever there is misleading or incorrect information, especially that may do harm, it is every members responsibility (including mine) to stand up and say something. Especially dangerous is the post the cuts against logic and/or conventional wisdom with the "I've been doing it this way successfully for years".

My post merely echoed EVERY expert in fishkeeping. Chlorine/chloramine kills bacteria and damages fish gills. If it's in your water, it should be neutralized.
I don't understand how anyone can disagree with this.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
First, let me say I'm a member first and a moderator second. My primary role is to assist members in fishkeeping. I never throw any moderator weight around.

I stand by my post warning new hobbyists about conditioning water.
The OP uses Prime and has been using buckets for water changes and wants to switch to a Python like device, but is not sure when to add conditioner.
A few say before the refill, one says after and a couple suggest not using conditioner at all....with no regard or knowledge of the status of the OP's source water.

I believe it would be a shame, not to mention a terrible reflection on the forum if the OP followed the advice of a couple of members, didn't bother using conditioner and lost fish as a result.

We have a few members that advocate never, ever doing partial water changes. Some advocate "over filtering" with more powerful filter pumps as the path to water purity. One member claimed to be a biologist but argued that there was no beneficial biology in the substrate and it was all in the filter. One member once told another member s/he didn't need conditioner, then came back several posts later and apologized saying he forgot he had a non-chlorinated well?! We have a fairly new member that answers every other post like an expert when he's only had a tank for a month or two.

Whenever there is misleading or incorrect information, especially that may do harm, it is every members responsibility (including mine) to stand up and say something. Especially dangerous is the post the cuts against logic and/or conventional wisdom with the "I've been doing it this way successfully for years".

My post merely echoed EVERY expert in fishkeeping. Chlorine/chloramine kills bacteria and damages fish gills. If it's in your water, it should be neutralized.
I don't understand how anyone can disagree with this.
I personally would have appreciated if I would have received a reply that actually recognized the entire reply that I made, which had absolutely nothing to do with the advice you gave, but the manner you gave it. My post mentions no where about the pros or cons to dechlor, so I'm not entirely sure why you dedicated your entire reply to it whilst ignoring the bigger picture that I spent my time laying out.

I in no part of any post made here, advocated the use or non-use of dechlor, so the issue behind that should be taken up elsewhere. I never said the advice you gave was wrong, I was referring to how you gave it. If I thought the advice you had given was 'bad advice' then I would have said so instead of typing out a reply that had absolutely nothing to do with your use of dechlor. Obviously my post was a violation of the rules and that is why it landed here, but that's what I wanted! I wanted to get your attention and hope you'll listen! Sometimes it takes an exploding car to get the attention of the desired party, in this case it simply took a violation of the rules to get your attention (which I personally didn't want your attention specifically, any moderator will suffice).

I feel obligated to [not] stand idly by and watch all of the experienced non-moderator members on this forum leave because they care not to post for the moderation team will be there soon after to disagree or share the same advice in a different manner, thus making them feel like a dirty peasant. I don't care if a moderator contradicts my advice, but if you intend to do so, then please do so without making the member feel like he/she is a moron. The attitude I have witnessed from some of the moderation team is quite nasty on some occasions and to watch a moderator (one of whom is supposed to set a good example!!) blindly belittle a member is quite unnecessary. You can disagree with my post, you can say as you please, but I know that some of you moderators have witnessed this and you will not say it, I don't blame you, why should you?

If you could acknowledge the actual issue here, hell, tell me that you don't care and nothing is going to change, I'll be happy. But don't ignore the big picture, I have dedicated a lot of thought and time in to my posts here and I was told it would be taken into consideration for the "better of the community", please do not mistake my posts as something that can be ignored, I have given the moderation team the utmost respect and you should feel obligated to do the same. Before ye say I am being disrespectful here now, please reconsider, as you all know that is not my intent.

Thanks for reading.
 

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No, you are not being disrespectful here, just this stuff on the open forum is bad, here is the place.
Hmmm, I didn't find this too rude but, since people are complaining I'll look into this.
So is it the big bold, or is it the "experienced" in quotes?
I suppose this could be taken the wrong way,
Yes, well, I don't really know what to say here.
You are right, moderators are definitely the highest influence on the forum, and we can get ourselves into trouble really easily. I feel like the mere presence of a moderator can be quite imposing, why I do my best not to argue in those threads that are prone to it. That's why mods should always remember they are moderators and represent the forum.
I do notice a lot of members, moderators included, do state their thoughts and closed case after. Maybe it's cause they're sick of arguing, maybe they're well read and truly can give proper support when asked, or maybe they are stubborn. It is frustrating to see this, yes. And you are right that mods will usually be listened to over others! Sometimes this is useful other times not. I HIGHLY agree that moderators posting CAN keep people out of a thread (not saying it always happens but it sure is possible). I've certainly felt that way before I was a moderator.
Anyways I'm beating around the bush here, basically yes I do agree with you. We are also discussing this more in private.
I think the thread will be left on it's own for now, but hopefully a lesson learned comes from this..
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I think a person's experience should speak for itself whether they have moderator status under their name or not. If members think they should take a mods advice and posts as the end all or the only correct answer, that's unfortunate.

We happen to have mods with tons of experience here and I'm pretty sure that their advice would be the same whether they have a mod. status or new member status. Having said that, we have to follow the same rules of civility and respectfulness as any other member of this forum. Maybe even more so.

If there are examples of mods being rude that you think we've purposely ignored, then we haven't done our job. But keep in mind that we're also members here and we have just as much of a right to disagree as anyone else. Our posts should be read and given the same consideration as any other member of this forum.

Honestly, we're just people who love this hobby and agreed to help keep this forum as civil and friendly a place as possible.
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
I think a person's experience should speak for itself whether they have moderator status under their name or not. If members think they should take a mods advice and posts as the end all or the only correct answer, that's unfortunate.

We happen to have mods with tons of experience here and I'm pretty sure that their advice would be the same whether they have a mod. status or new member status. Having said that, we have to follow the same rules of civility and respectfulness as any other member of this forum. Maybe even more so.

If there are examples of mods being rude that you think we've purposely ignored, then we haven't done our job. But keep in mind that we're also members here and we have just as much of a right to disagree as anyone else. Our posts should be read and given the same consideration as any other member of this forum.

Honestly, we're just people who love this hobby and agreed to help keep this forum as civil and friendly a place as possible.
I'm not disputing the fact that a moderator has the right to disagree or agree with a subject, I am stating that moderators should realize they have a much higher influence than regular members and thus should represent themselves in a more appropriate manner, if you disagree then that's entirely on you, if you feel a moderator should be allowed to "cowboy it up" instead of taking a better approach then that's something you should discuss with the Administrator of the board and not me. Moderators have the most influence when giving advice, like it or not, you are not seen as "regular members" giving advice on the forums, therefore your advice should be open to interpretation by regular members and should be debatable. I have seen too many moderators give half ass advice and leave without another word, if you are not going to give proper advice then why give it at all? I will not say anyone specifically, but I will say that AbbeysDad and Byron both give VERY knowledgeable advice, but their downfall is the fact they have nothing but "Tunnel Vision" on their views and do not like for other people to disagree/open a debate on their views, that's very poor moderation material in my opinion, you are hired to make decisions but yet you only believe your way is the good way? Disagree if you please, but both know they have very strict views and often give misleading advice because it's "their" way of doing so.

I am not saying that the moderators that are here are [not] knowledgeable, I am saying that they have a belittling method of providing/contradicting advice, which is wrong to do as a moderator, the moderation group is supposed to make unbias decisions for the entire board in regards to how moderation is done, they should be held to the same level when posting advice.

I have seen posts that are a blatant violation of the rules and it goes ignored due to the fact it did not upset any moderator that was posting in the thread, but if you contradict some of the smurky uptight portions of the moderation team then it's almost guaranteed that your post is going to get removed, I have been flat out rude to people on here before (although I try not too) and I've had moderators like the post instead of removing it. While I couldn't care less about how you moderate, it's what you choose to moderate. I believe a discussion board like this where all advice given is experience based should be less heavily moderated due to the fact it's all really open to interpretation, but that's another story that has no relation to what I'm posting about today.

At any rate, I do not feel that my posts here are going to change anything, so I will refrain from replying again unless necessary. I have made my views very clear and it's going to be impossible to change someones ways and I do not intend to do so, I just want you to be aware that people have been watching, and they are not happy. I didn't even want to get involved until numerous people were complaining about it in the IRC, which made me feel like I should get involved and express how I feel.

TFK is going to lose a lot of experienced and long standing members due to some of the moderators inability to play well when contradicted.

See ya.

No, you are not being disrespectful here, just this stuff on the open forum is bad, here is the place.
Hmmm, I didn't find this too rude but, since people are complaining I'll look into this.
So is it the big bold, or is it the "experienced" in quotes?
I suppose this could be taken the wrong way,
Yes, well, I don't really know what to say here.
You are right, moderators are definitely the highest influence on the forum, and we can get ourselves into trouble really easily. I feel like the mere presence of a moderator can be quite imposing, why I do my best not to argue in those threads that are prone to it. That's why mods should always remember they are moderators and represent the forum.
I do notice a lot of members, moderators included, do state their thoughts and closed case after. Maybe it's cause they're sick of arguing, maybe they're well read and truly can give proper support when asked, or maybe they are stubborn. It is frustrating to see this, yes. And you are right that mods will usually be listened to over others! Sometimes this is useful other times not. I HIGHLY agree that moderators posting CAN keep people out of a thread (not saying it always happens but it sure is possible). I've certainly felt that way before I was a moderator.
Anyways I'm beating around the bush here, basically yes I do agree with you. We are also discussing this more in private.
I think the thread will be left on it's own for now, but hopefully a lesson learned comes from this..
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Thank you, at least the entirety of my posts has not been a waste of time. I really appreciate it.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Is there anything else anyone would like to add? I'd really like to see some feedback on this, I've spent a lot of time on TFK and I just feel that the current route of things is a means to an end. Some of you are great people, really, but honestly with an absentee admin, you are the the blind leading the blind here, not necessarily your fault but I can only assume atleast some of you have a desire to ensure this forum gets the activity it so rightfully deserves?

Thanks.
 

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Is there anything else anyone would like to add? I'd really like to see some feedback on this, I've spent a lot of time on TFK and I just feel that the current route of things is a means to an end. Some of you are great people, really, but honestly with an absentee admin, you are the the blind leading the blind here, not necessarily your fault but I can only assume atleast some of you have a desire to ensure this forum gets the activity it so rightfully deserves?

Thanks.
Only that we are taking this very seriously and working on it. Thanks Andrew.
 

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but honestly with an absentee admin, you are the the blind leading the blind here

Hello AndrewM21. I don't think we've crossed paths here before. I'm wake.

First and foremost, we appreciate every member here and I would like to thank you for sticking around. I only glanced over the thread in question (although I did post when I noticed a member posted about Saltwater) and am not concerned with debating it here.

I know that it appears as if we have an "absentee admin" since he has not been very active on the public forum. Let me reassure you that he is in fact active as a part of the team and does have the final say on everything we do.

As moderators, we are given the responsibility of handling day-to-day affairs of the forum and discussing what improvements/changes need to be made in order to help the community grow. We have some duties, such as squashing arguments, removing posts/threads that are detrimental to the topic or forum altogether and enforcing rules. Without going into too much detail, any large decisions that affect long-standing members or the website in whole have to go through administration. The problem here is that so much of this goes on behind the scenes, and altough we put a lot of thought and discussion into something, it appears that these issues are not addressed. Believe me, they are.

I want you to know that we will do anything we can to keep you here as a member. We appreciate our membership because they are the lifeblood of this community. Let me know what we can do to help you in any way.

-wake49
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
Hello AndrewM21. I don't think we've crossed paths here before. I'm wake.

First and foremost, we appreciate every member here and I would like to thank you for sticking around. I only glanced over the thread in question (although I did post when I noticed a member posted about Saltwater) and am not concerned with debating it here.

I know that it appears as if we have an "absentee admin" since he has not been very active on the public forum. Let me reassure you that he is in fact active as a part of the team and does have the final say on everything we do.

As moderators, we are given the responsibility of handling day-to-day affairs of the forum and discussing what improvements/changes need to be made in order to help the community grow. We have some duties, such as squashing arguments, removing posts/threads that are detrimental to the topic or forum altogether and enforcing rules. Without going into too much detail, any large decisions that affect long-standing members or the website in whole have to go through administration. The problem here is that so much of this goes on behind the scenes, and altough we put a lot of thought and discussion into something, it appears that these issues are not addressed. Believe me, they are.

I want you to know that we will do anything we can to keep you here as a member. We appreciate our membership because they are the lifeblood of this community. Let me know what we can do to help you in any way.

-wake49
I appreciate you replying Wake, and no we have never had contact prior to this. My main concern (which I have expressed in detail throughout this thread) should be enough to show you have much time I have invested in this ordeal prior to even posting.

You already know what my concerns are but have you (as in the entire moderation team) as well as the Administrator even been considering what can be done to get this community back on track? There is a huge lack of moderation involvement in general and I honestly feel it's nothing more than a detached community at this point. Sure, the moderators actively give advice throughout the forum, but that's not what I am talking about. I feel that the moderation team should be more active in the community by throwing a variety of different events, this will be what gets the community back on track, the current way things are is very very detached and I feel no sense of community when I come to TFK anymore (originally when I joined, I absolutely loved this place, and I've seen forums go down the toilet before, I'd like to not see that here).

Perhaps the moderation team should be more actively involved in the community? I don't recall ever seeing any "Forum Suggestions? Let's hear them!" based threads as to where the community gives YOU advice, the moderation team is basically a useless group without support from the forums member base, this forum will gradually decrease in activity if the voices of the members are not taken into consideration and their concerns addressed.

With that I will say good luck with everything and I do hope you get everything back on track.
 

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Title from Discuss with Moderators - "Something on your mind? Do you have a suggestion or a concern? Start a thread here to discuss it with moderators, where only you and moderators can see and reply to your posts"

This is the whole point of this area.
 

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Title from Discuss with Moderators - "Something on your mind? Do you have a suggestion or a concern? Start a thread here to discuss it with moderators, where only you and moderators can see and reply to your posts"

This is the whole point of this area.
With all due respect, this forum is only useful if you NEED the discussion to be kept private. You should be holding open and PUBLIC threads requesting user advice, that way everyone can gather as a community and see what each others ideas are.

I personally would never have opened a thread in this forum to express my concerns or suggestions, because it defeats the entire purpose of being a community.

I'm sorry Neil, you seem very open minded and kind, but your reply was very off balance. Do not mistake my reply as brass, as it's not my intent.
 

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Andrew, in the past there have been suggestion threads. There have been several on bettafish.com, TFK's sister site and a lot of what has been said there has carried over to TFK.

There are various reasons why we don't often have suggestion threads on the open forum. Not because we don't want to hear suggestions but because having threads like that in such a way has often only resulted in idle chat. If you want your suggestions heard, bringing them to us directly is the better course of action. Posting it on an open forum may mean your voice is lost among many.

We've heard a lot about what you think is wrong with the forum. Now I'm offering you a chance to tell us what you personally would do if you were in our place to solve the perceived problems.
 

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I'm sorry to hear you feel this way, Andrew. We are taking your words into consideration, be assured of that.

I feel you may be slightly off in your view of our community, though such a thing is defined, to some extent, by individual perceptions. In truth. . . we get many suggestions from the community in this forum, on a wide range of topics! We always do our best to incorporate the suggestions and views of our members into everything we do. Some things happen quickly, others take more time, none are ignored.

It saddens me to hear you say that we are not actively involved here. All of us devote a lot of time and care to TFK, and we do it because of the sense of community we feel. We don't just give suggestions and advice, we are actively involved with the members, to the point of having strong friendships with many of the people here!

As often as we see suggestions come through, we see words of praise and thanks for our help in making TFK what it is. The majority of the threads that members post in this area of the forum are positive. To me this shows that on the whole, the users here at TFK feel that we are doing a good job.

We're still working on the technical side of things, this site is currently undergoing many changes, and as things shift and settle we will be able to do a bit more with the new options available to us. Hopefully this will better enable us to make TFK a bit more as you would like to see it, and host fun events for all!

Until then, I beg you to be patient. Know your suggestions have been taken into account, and we will do our very best to ensure you remain happy here, along with all of our other members.
 
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