This is a post I’ve been meaning to create for a long time now, and something I shared in private with my fellow moderators.
I wanted to write a few words about what the current state of the forum is and where we’d possibly be able to go from here.
So, first of all let me say that I’ve been using the forum the wrong way for the first 3-4 years. It took me a bit of growth as a person and as a professional to be able to shift my POV just enough so I can change my worldview and challenge my core beliefs.
So anything I am going to say now, I wish someone was there to tell myself back when I needed it the most.
Our forum is not perfect. Far from it.
In fact I am now convinced it’s not going to change a whole lot in the near future, even with the upcoming platform overhaul.
This is a place where people from all walks of life, different countries and cultures meet and talk about the one thing they have in common:
Their dreams, hopes and efforts whilst chasing that dream of leading a different life.
A freelancer’s life. No 9-5, no boss, the modern cowboy.
That being said, not everyone’s views, work ethics, opinions will align with everyone else’s.
It is impossible.
I’ve noticed that a vast majority of fellow forum members are quick to judge, and are often pointing their finger at others.
Others who either have done something clearly wrong or may not know what we do.
I’d personally like for that to change moving forward. I’m not advocating for a “friendlier more welcoming place”. I am talking about making a conscious effort to think before we reply.
•“Can I help this person?”
•“Is what I am about to say something I’d like for people to tell myself?”
•“Does this person really want help?”
Sometimes we get caught up in a struggle to be right.
Or we because we were once treated unfairly, harshly, we seek for people who break the rules to be immediately punished for what they did.
For whatever reason, we end up playing a round of “emotional boxing” with people we’ve never met, over the Internet.
That’s not what I want this forum to be about.
As someone who has had some success on this platform, I want to help as many people as possible.
But I have reached the conclusion that not all people want to be helped. Not everyone is ready to view things differently.
And there will always be people who will be here to just try to game the system, cheat, copy others, be online 24/7 and post on the forum because some guru told them that will make them rich.
So what I suggest we do?
As a moderator, I will try my best to lead by example.
I try my best to remain calm no matter what the situation is, and I refrain from judging other members, regardless of what they say.
If I can’t help them, I do not engage, I simply move on.
If they are breaking forum rules, I moderate as needed.
In order for the forum to be elevated, we need everybody’s help.
It starts with us. The moderators and the regulars. (both those that carry that badge, and those who just participate every day on the forum)
We should lead by example.
Let’s try to not flag people’s posts strictly because they don’t know better.
Let’s try to be less dismissive, and try to help each other.
I think that we collectively as a community can elevate the forum, if we all just try to me a bit more empathetic when we read someone’s’ post.
90% of the time I see a “weird” post, or someone asking about something that’s clearly a violation, is because of despair. Fear. Someone’s probably in a really bad place.
We don’t know them, or their story. Nor do we have to.
All I am asking is for us to try to not be so quick to judge.
Let’s lead by example. And hope that others will follow.
I am here to discuss and talk about specific cases if you want with examples.
This is a topic I wanted to write, to inform everyone of where I am at personally and see if we as a collective want to change direction and try to elevate the forum.
This post was initially only shared in the lounge, but after a discussion with the mods team, we decided it should be shared in public.
I am sharing this with everyone, on hopes we can openly discuss about how we can elevate the forum, and therefore maybe spark the change we want to see in the platform as well.
Thank you for reading this. Hopefully this will spark a wonderful discussion.
P.S. Please keep replies relevant. For this particular topic I will heavily moderate the discussion.