I bet many of you still wonder how our ex community manager is doing. On his internet page he noted :
I cannot describe how I’ve felt these past few months as I’ve continued to look for work. Sure I had a job, when many can’t find one. I liked where I worked and the people I worked with. And yes the ending of a nearly 2 year relationship in the middle of all that didn’t help. But I still felt like something else was missing from me.
Enter the new job. On Monday, I start working with BioWare working with the Community around Star Wars: The Old Republic.
I get to work with BioWare… BIOWARE!
I get to work on a Star Wars game… STAR WARS!
And I once again get to be a part of a fanatical, fantastic and fascinating community.
Nostalgia for a bygone ‘era’ hits him and starts to tell the story of ‘his Acclaim’. We found out how he got hired at Acclaim and the fact that Acclaim Communities didn’t want him there :
… as proof of my competency I contacted David Perry, who directed me to David Jun in Acclaim’s Marketing. He brought me onboard as one of the first volunteer moderators for 2Moons, with 2 other people. One really never made an effort and the other worked out well for some time, but eventually was let go.
I continued to grow the team adding those that I thought really helped the community. I will eventually write about some of them but for now I will only mention Jill Sullivan. Jill was my “wonder twin”… Between the two of us we could do just about any project Acclaim threw at us, in record time and above expectations. It was her video creation for 2Moons that led to David Perry hiring her to work for him, and her encouragement with him and Howard Marks that helped Acclaim hire me. I cannot ever thank her enough for that. She is currently looking for work in the Gaming Industry and I would highly recommend her to any company.
And that brings us right up to the point of me being hired at Acclaim.
Next up, my first few weeks at Acclaim and the challenges of taking on Communities that really didn’t want me there.
In his second post about Acclaim we find about the management system implemented by Historian in Acclaim communities : a hierarchy that consisted of a “Lead” or “Head” that reported to him, and “Second” or “Assistant” that reported to the Lead and filled in when they could not be available and a team of moderators.The ‘head’ had autonomy and power to do what she/he wants, so no wonder that in 9dragons community the head of moderators had tyrannical behavior and was not oriented towards communication and freedom of speech. We shown in many articles this type of behavior. I believe many of you still remember this : ” I am a bitch and I will make your life a hell !” We also find out that the powers to moderate were given to people of 16 years old ( in some exceptions even below). And then we wonder why they behaved so childish.
With 9 communities to manage there was really no way for me to do it all myself so I began to structure them in a hierarchy that consisted of a “Lead” or “Head” that reported to me, a “Second” or “Assistant” that reported to the Lead and filled in when they could not be available and a team of moderators for them. I tried to give them enough autonomy to select moderators themselves but always attempted to checkout anyone they wished to bring on. On a few occasions I would add those who I felt would benefit the community, but tried to respect the wishes of the Lead Moderators.
I did have a particularly hard time with one community; one that I never really got control over. It was based around a game that appealed to a young male, “tween” demographic and the moderators of the community were quite young as well. They greatly resented me coming into the community and setting down rules that were a little more stringent than they were used to. Though I didn’t remove any of the moderators they were all younger than the base limit I wanted set of sixteen years old. For the most part I left them this community alone, only entering it when things got out of hand. This unfortunately gave them the impression that I was only an enforcer and bit of a tyrant. I think that if I had just stepped in and set a new team in place the initial disruption to the community would have saved me a fair bit of grief in the long run.
In the end, Historian learned one thing :
Your loudest and most obnoxious critics are ultimately on your side. They want things to be better, but they just can’t always communicate this in a way that is constructive. As a Community Manager you have to set aside any emotional response and see what it is that is getting them so riled up.