My 2 Cents 5 Important Tips To Moderate Your Forums

cheezcarls

It's Game Time!

Hello to all WMS community!

I am sure that you have enjoyed learning and contributing here in this wonderful forum. But this topic is going to be even more interesting that you ever thought, even for myself. You know why? It is because I have been in this position before. It is not easy though, and quite challenging. But in the end, it is how you are going to respond to these challenges when you are in this position. Let's talk about how to manage your forums very well.

I have been a forum moderator years ago when I was hired by a client who owned a forum (in which the forum was now gone and out). When I applied for a forum moderator back then, I don't have experiences yet but it is quite simple. I was paid a fixed $100/month as a part-time forum moderator, and it is not easy, especially that some members are abusing the forum by spamming and with low quality posts. I only work at least two hours a day on top of my main job back then as a full time virtual assistant. I have so many things to learn in terms of being a forum moderator. Because of that, I gained experience when the client decided to stop the project due to financial issues. Even though that I have lost the job as forum moderator, but I have gained experience and learning as well. I have finally figured it out on how to moderate your respective forums very well, and I'm going to share it right here. But I do have a question for you right now.

Are you ready to learn what it takes to be a forum moderator of your own forum?

Without further ado, here are some five most important tips that you can count on as a forum moderator:


1. Take control of spammers

To be honest with you guys, this is the most tedious part of my experience as forum moderator. If you are owning a forum, it is important that we should make it look appropriate and clean to the active community. I know we hate spam, and so do I. We should take control of those spammers by simply giving them warnings on what they do. I have dealt with several accounts who posted spam threads and replies, and I admit that it's a lot of headache for me to remove them. Worse, there are lots of them and it keeps coming. We give them warnings first. If they will do that again, remove and ban their IP address immediately.

2. Carefully choose your staff in forums

Every forum doesn't need only one person to fully manage it. You need some staff who can take care of other tasks as well. But in order for you to make it happen, make sure that you choose your forum staff very carefully. Try taking your time to interview them and revealing their own credentials before hiring them. Remember, as forum owners, we took 100% responsibility of what's happening around the forum, especially when your staff isn't doing something right.

3. Just be professional towards others

One of the most important tips that you should know as forum moderator is to become professional to the members. Don't act like one, just be one. You may have a good personality in their own eyes, but it doesn't mean that you aren't doing anything to make the forum a great place to discuss. In terms of being professional, you should write well in decent English and minimize your grammar, spelling and capitalization mistakes once and for all.

4. Some forum staff can give you trouble

I have experienced this when one of the forum staff is doing something wrong like marking infractions or penalties on unnecessary ones. The best way for you to do that is to educate and remind your forum staff about the rules and regulations of being here in this forum. One good suggestion is that before they are going to mark it as infraction which they're not really sure, they need to consult to the higher forum moderator or owner.

5. Take immediate action when someone abusing others

When dealing with someone who is abusing other members, don't do the same. Just be professional, and say it in a nice way for them to acknowledge it. At least, they may respect you a bit and will not abuse other members again. Again, just handle abusers in a nice way, in case they are doing it to others.

I hope this article helps you out in terms of managing your own or others' forums. Even for me, I finally learned on what it takes to become the best forum moderator that I can be if I wanna own one. If you're one of the forum owners, this article is the best for you to read on.

To your forum management success!
 

networld

Well-Known Member
I agree with your points. Spam control is the most important task for survival of a forum. But it is not an easy task as you cannot check each and every post in a forum when the traffic grew after a certain limit. But I have seen in almost all forums there is an option for the members to report any spam messages. That is quite a good idea and it can be effective as members are omnipresent in a forum. Any attempt from members to moderate other's posts should be discouraged to avoid unnecessary clashes. They can just click on the report button if they wish to.
 

pwarbi

Well-Known Member
The tips in the OP in regards to good forum moderation I agree with, and I think a lot of it is also just common sense. At the end of the day you've been given a position of power on that forum, so it's up to you not to abuse it.
 

rayone

Well-Known Member
I agree moderation is not limited about knowing the rules but knowing the rules is only one part of his duty. Besides you are as much as a member of the community as other members, if I was ever appointed a moderator anywhere I will treat them as my brothers and sisters. However, staying within rules is something where there will be no compromise.
 

networld

Well-Known Member
I agree moderation is not limited about knowing the rules but knowing the rules is only one part of his duty. Besides you are as much as a member of the community as other members, if I was ever appointed a moderator anywhere I will treat them as my brothers and sisters. However, staying within rules is something where there will be no compromise.
So an the prime objective of anybody in a forum should be to encourage forum participation and that is applicable for a forum moderator too. But it is quite difficult to strike a balance between being friendly and instilling discipline. After all you need to draw a line some where.

I think that is why most of the forums have a system of warning. If anything that violates forum ToS is found member responsible for that would be given a warning. That is an opportunity to realize the mistake and not to repeat it in future. But if the member still keeps on violating the rules,there is no other option but to ban him.
 

Alexandoy

Well-Known Member
Our primary concern in our office forum is #2 - getting qualified and able staff. There are people who are easily peeved with a negative post and the reaction is to block or delete the account of the poster. One policy of our office website's forum is to be friendly. We emphasize the role of a moderator like a friendly cop who is on the lookout for criminals but tame on offenders. Take note, criminal is different from an offender. With spamming, we have a board where we move all spam posts. We never delete spam posts.
 

rayone

Well-Known Member
So an the prime objective of anybody in a forum should be to encourage forum participation and that is applicable for a forum moderator too. But it is quite difficult to strike a balance between being friendly and instilling discipline. After all you need to draw a line some where.

I think that is why most of the forums have a system of warning. If anything that violates forum ToS is found member responsible for that would be given a warning. That is an opportunity to realize the mistake and not to repeat it in future. But if the member still keeps on violating the rules,there is no other option but to ban him.
To be very frank, that's what I have been doing for last four years as a moderator on couple of Indian site. Some times I warn them posing as a comedian sending my warnings in a funny manner but if they still go on with their ways I see no option but to ban them. I am considered a good and friendly member on all sites I work for.
 
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