Good day everyone,
Brief intro before we get started, this was brought to our attention several days ago by long-time blog reader and console player Firehawk894 after he sought some answers regarding the duties of certain staff members at WarGaming. After seeing the screenshots he provided, and knowing this isn’t the first case of WarGaming moderators abusing their own strike system to get rid of people quicker, we asked if he would like to speak up on the matter. Without further ado:
Hello everyone. So recently I logged onto the World of Tank console forums, just to see what the community had been up to lately, another thread complaining about Arty, someone complaining about Gold Ammo and so on. Surprisingly, I had a red flag next to my notifications, when I click on it, what do I find? “Your account has received its third strike”. I thought that was quite strange, given that I have never had a first or second strike during my years on the forums, only minor “educational warnings”. (The system on the WoT Console forums is a five strike system. Strikes are permanently attached to your account with the fifth being a permanent ban from the forums)
It turned out that one of the moderators didn’t take very kindly to me expressing the opinion that the game is being run down by heavy handed moderation, developers that ignore their wider community and job titles that sound like jokes but are actually serious roles.
As a previous article mentions, a certain member of the WGCB staff is on record (and photographical proof) calling the WT E-100 a balanced tank and generally saying it fits the game fine, even Serb himself has said that the WT E-100 needed to be removed. But WGCB decided to ignore the experience of the longer-running PC platform, ignore the opinions of their veteran players and just change the game in to what THEY want, as opposed to what the community wants.
Lately, concerns have been sprouting up in the community that the forum moderators are only there to smack-down any dissenting voices and uplift voices that are praising their game design, there have also been concerns that the gameplay experience is coming from a single viewpoint, rather then the collected viewpoints of the playerbase at large.
When I tried to raise this issue with the forum moderation staff, as we have been told to do if we have an issue, I was met with a very stand-offish response which eventually devolved into the forum staff becoming hostile and taking very strong measures to ensure my silence aka the third strike. The staff member I questioned merely tried to deflect my question and refused to give a simple answer, then added two other moderators to the chat and left, leaving his two fellow moderators to dish out punishment without context.
These actions only seem to compound the opinion that the forum moderators are very picky in their moderator actions, censoring people left and right for the ‘wrong opinions’ while openly ignoring more serious offenses such as death threats, from users who routinely defend bad WG decisions or actions. The general attitude of the forum moderators seems to be one of a superiority complex, or power going to people’s heads.
I would want to say that I’m disappointed or surprised by the actions of the moderation team, the secrecy about what is going on behind the scenes and the general uncaring nature towards the community, but this comes from the same office that stole work from a player and only ‘remembered’ to credit them when multiple people had already complained of their theft, so don’t put too much faith in their ability to make sound decisions. One forum moderator even had the gall to say that the actions of the moderators are the concern of internal supervisors, and nothing that the staff do or say should be the concern of the community at large, but quite frankly, when you have players scared to offer criticism of a game they only want to see improve, it IS the concern of the community.
As mentioned in an earlier article, the heavy-handed approach to forum moderation is the reason that a group of players banded together and made an alternate forum, where opinions could be freely shared without having to be constantly looking over your shoulder for the banhammer about to assassinate you.
This is being written 26/02/2018. I checked into my WoT profile on the Console Forums, to find that I have been permanently banned from the forums for violating the rule “Misc”, given the nature of my account being permanently suspended, that means I cannot log into my messages or notifications to receive actual details on what led to this unprovoked ban, in other words, it is a case of WGCB’s moderation staff abusing their power and then hiding the evidence behind broad terms that could mean anything. It is rather interesting and also suspicious that this very defensive nature occured after I posted a link to the RSR Discord and invited people to talk about the game there (that thread can be viewed here), and that my PM conversations with one of the moderators appears to have been edited by a third party.