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Forum Thread

Complaint Regarding Inappropriate Content

Forum-Index Bugs/Complaints Complaint Regarding Inappropriate Content
Amuu
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Trainerlevel: 53

Forum Posts: 838
Posted: Sun, 08/08/2021 15:59 (1 Year ago)
It has become evident that, over these last few months, this website has spiralled out of control when it comes to protecting our community and reinforcing the rules.

This complaint is here to explain what is going wrong and how things should be improved.


1. The use of language on the website.

Quote from Rules - PokéHeroes"1.1 PokéHeroes should be a friendly community-based browsergame for every age. To ensure this, it is forbidden to use offensive swear words or to make any statement that is inappropriate for any age"


Recently, there has been an influx of users who have been using inappropriate language which violates Pokéheroes rules. This can range from the f-word to racial slurs. Feeds have been known to be up for hours, sometimes stretching to ridiculous periods of time, such as full days. Whilst these feeds are reported, the fact that it takes this long for such things to be taken down is not good enough. Is this website is child friendly, we have to ensure that such rules are enforced to prevent children from using terms such as the examples above.

Furthermore, the recent frequent use of racial/homophobic slurs on this website has been appalling. This language is not appropriate for ANYONE. It's highly offensive and has affected a lot of my friends emotionally.

To combat this, I'd suggest recruiting more moderators, taking their timezones in consideration as some time gaps are not covered by current mods due to their schedules. Pokéheroes is usually unmoderated from 22:00 - 09:00 as there is a severe lack of moderators based in countries that cover said time ranges.

GERMANY: Riako, Bokuto.
BELGIUM: CatLady (same timezone as Germany).
USA: Jacharias, Ravenswing
???: Silverlugia456

In addition, I believe that a word filter should be implemented to ensure that users are prevented from posting inappropriate language that breach Pokéheroes rules, disallowing users to post messages that contain blocked words.



2. The use of inappropriate imagery, primarily on profiles.

Quote from Rules - PokéHeroes"1.1 [...] it is forbidden [...] to provide links to any material [e.g, images, videos, audio] that contains inappropriate content and/or language."


Over the course of my time on PokéHeroes, there have been a fair share of users who have had inappropriate images on their profiles, as well as links on feeds. Before, these images were swiftly taken down, with action being taken against the users.

Recently, there has been incidents where links and profile images containing nsfw have been up for long periods of time, much like my first point above. However, the most rattling incident of them all, was when a user was GRANTED THE PERMISSION to have a nsfw profile picture, just because it cropped out all nudity.

No matter what, a nsfw image is unsuitable for children, cropped or not. For example, if the image includes the face only, it's still a lewd expression, which implies that a not-so-appropriate act is being committed. NOT SAFE FOR WORK CONTENT CAN STILL OCCUR, EVEN IF THERE ARE CLOTHES! The content is still from 18+ work! 18+ does NOT mean under 18s. Therefore, it's not suitable for a family friendly website.

This does not just go for profile images, but for profile, signature, links and feeds. If you search up 'hentai' in the hashtag browser, there are users talking about their love for pornographic content, including one user posting a discord link to a server that apparently posts 18+ content. How is this feed even still up? How can you allow children to click on links like this?

More NEEDS to be done. We need more moderators and we need them to have more permissions. Currently, mods are unable to remove or edit profile pictures and pages, making both their and Riako's jobs harder (Mods see bad content > Cannot remove it > Has to ask said user > No reply? Ask Riako to remove it). The rules should be changed to abolish implied sexual content. Profiles and links should be moderated. A statement from the Admin on this situation is WELL overdue. There are children on this site waiting for clarity. They want this to stop. Adults on this site want this to stop. I want this to stop.

I'm sure I speak for a lot of users with this post. If you want to see a compilation of how we all feel about these situations, feel free to browse through here.

Thank you for taking the time to read this complaint.
dirtdude
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Trainerlevel: 40

Forum Posts: 596
Posted: Sun, 08/08/2021 18:01 (1 Year ago)
*huff*
i was in a conversation with someone with a profile pic that was implicitly 18+,but it was implicit. That person showed me the convo between that person and a mod. It was allowed because it was implicit

pls don’t make it a big deal
Help my boissssss down here
Amuu
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Trainerlevel: 53

Forum Posts: 838
Posted: Sun, 08/08/2021 19:12 (1 Year ago)
The fact that a mod would allow an implicit photo is wrong.
Like I said in my post above, whether it's cropped or not, it's a nsfw image. It's not allowed.
If I was to ask my parents, my cousins' parents, and parents of my younger sisters' friends, I can guarantee that none of them would want their child looking at it.

This is a big deal. This is a kids website. The picture is from an 18+ manga. The character in the profile picture is having some sort of sexual act done to them. It's not appropriate.
Tsuko
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Trainerlevel: 80

Forum Posts: 427
Posted: Sun, 08/08/2021 19:47 (1 Year ago)
Full support♥️ This site might not be just for children, but it should be safe and friendly for all ages

dirtdude
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Trainerlevel: 40

Forum Posts: 596
Posted: Sun, 08/08/2021 20:17 (1 Year ago)
the only thing that matters is the mods definition of inappropriate, and that cropped image did not catch their radar of inappropriate

pls this drama just would be resolved if we ignored it
Help my boissssss down here
Amuu
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Trainerlevel: 53

Forum Posts: 838
Posted: Sun, 08/08/2021 20:21 (1 Year ago)
I appreciate your feelings towards the complaint I posted, but I'm not trying to start any kind of drama!
This is a complaint that both me, and many other people on this site agree with. We wanted mods to have more control, more mods, word filters and more to be implemented to make this site a friendlier and better environment for everyone! Not only this, but exposing children to pornography is illegal.

Furthermore, the matter that you are bringing up is not the focus of this complaint. This complaint is regarding the use of language and images, not a 'drama' that has occurred on the site. <3
Finhawk
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Trainerlevel: 86

Forum Posts: 1,561
Posted: Sun, 08/08/2021 21:07 (1 Year ago)
I'm guessing there's been just a very clear cut "nothing explicit" ruling on images that has the loop holes of cropping or strategic covering up of parts that have been exploited by users. Or there hasn't been clear guidelines provided to the mods on what's allowed and what's not and individual mods have made their own calls.

But whatever the case may be, I fairly optimistically think that the discourse has reached the staff's ears by now and they're currently busy discussing any reform of old guidelines or setting new ones. This is probably not something you should rush on first instinct and it is possible the number of mods may or may not be sufficient.

As for the language issues along with discussions and links of inappropriate subjects, that does indeed further point to a lack of manpower combating it as far we on the outside can see. But we can't really know what's going on in the inner-workings of PH.

So in light of the current outcry and some past happenings, I'm starting to see two kind of glaring issues with PH's moderation that seem to align with other users' views:

1. Lack of quick and decisive action with serious issues that sorely need it. Which may or may not stem from a lack of clear guidelines provided for mods, lack of a clear and easy communication system between mods and Riako, lack of tools to handle the issue for the mods and/or simply a lack of mods. If a past very unfortunate issue did not inspire Riako to set up clear guidelines and tools for dealing with inappropriate content efficiently, I really hope this does. This is a bit concerning.

2. PH seems to need a Public Relations person of some sort. Whenever issues crop up, Riako and the mods don't tend to speak on it much before they reach a verdict, which leaves the userbase to guess and fuel whatever is happening. Just a simple "We have heard your concerns and Riako and the mod team are currently discussing it." would be an excellent start to calm things down a bit whenever problems arise.

But that's just my subjective take on it. I have no inside scoops of how the management of PH truly works so I can't be sure of how right or wrong I am.

However, I'm sure Riako and the mod team ultimately have the best interests of PH in mind and they're only a handful of busy people with lives doing a payless and sometimes thankless job. But PH having another outcry like this is evidence enough that the modding policies need a refreshing look and it wouldn't hurt to improve their communication.
Quote from Commander ShepardI'm Commander Shepard and this is my favorite post on PokeHeroes.
Sandara
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Forum Posts: 175
Posted: Sun, 08/08/2021 23:35 (1 Year ago)
I know part of my comment is not really related to the post, but about what Finhawk wrote, I think what we need right now is 2 new types of Staff Members the don't necessarily need authority in the game, more like they will be like "watchers" that analyses whats going on in the game:

1. Problem miners: someone who is active in forums/feeds and knows a lot of players, can decide what is important and what is not, directly contact the Mods, and give feedback to the players. This will reduce most of the unnecessary problems/questions/complaints that the mods receive and will help the Mods focus on the real problems, plus it will calm down most mass complaints like this one.

2. Opines: just like the Newbie Mentors, 4-5 people that meet certain requirements can express their opinion, and just like the Mentoring they will receive a request to send an opinion, they can either accept and send their opinion or reject and the system will select another player. Preferably, people who are already involved with the problem can randomly be chosen to directly express their opinion to one of the mods.

Also, I do not and never will agree that pictures that contain no nudity are appropriate for children, it's actually my first time someone told me that it's only inappropriate if there is nudity, then I question myself if you are doing a thousand-piece puzzle of an animal in which nobody showed you the whole puzzle, wouldn't you be able to tell at least which animal species it was and have some idea of the whole picture just by completing some of the pieces?
It's like the cropped pictures, we can't see the whole image, but everybody knows what it was and for me no matter what, if it leads people to think about inappropriate things (in a bad way), then the thing is inappropriate on its own...

Well, it is just my opinion by the way, I think I just had the need to express myself here since I shared the hashtag.
English is not my first language, please understand
Drachiron
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Trainerlevel: 17

Forum Posts: 18
Posted: Mon, 09/08/2021 01:47 (1 Year ago)
full support on this, the fact that the inappropriate profile was brushed over just because it was "implicit" when everyone clearly knows what it is and how minors obviously shouldn't know about is...concerning.
and no, just because its "safer" than most "kids/all ages" website doesn't mean we can ignore the safety of children.

while i do agree with the word filter, people can easily find a loophole with it by spacing out the words, so inappopriate language, while still needing to be monitored, will be hard to make sure people don't casually curse 24/7 doubt anyone will do that but just incase.
i really do hope the mods and riako do find a way to avoid situations like this in the future, and hope that we don't need to do something similar just to get their attention
-Prajju
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Trainerlevel: 48

Forum Posts: 582
Posted: Mon, 09/08/2021 02:01 (1 Year ago)
I agree with all what said, but there’s another problem regarding with the rule 1.1;
Quote from Rules - PokéHeroes"1.1 PokéHeroes should be a friendly community-based browsergame for every age. To ensure this, it is forbidden to use offensive swear words or to make any statement that is inappropriate for any age"

As you said about the time gaps between where there is a lack of moderation just because of time-zones of moderators, just like that there had been a language issue where the slurs and those inappropriate words have been used too much BUT in other languages too. Just because of the linguistic barriers, Staff had not been able to identify those words in time. As far as I know, in a case, it had been over 2 weeks to identify those words and remove them from the profile of that user, even it was reported again and again in those 2 weeks.
I’m not talking about adding moderators who all know all the languages of the world (‘cuz adding 6,500 moderators isn’t a nice idea). I’m talking about hiring those users for moderation with having the mother-tongue of that language which is used hugely by the users on this site. This can be considered by checking any web traffic site or by the most IP address visits of countries on this site. If there already are mods to cover timezone and have same mother-tongues, then there should be added other mods having different mother-tongues not that of the same one.
By having this, the cases and issues of the slur and inappropriate words can be resolved asap, not that long where translators are even helpless.
Thanks.
Immortes
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Trainerlevel: 35

Forum Posts: 635
Posted: Mon, 09/08/2021 02:36 (1 Year ago)
Mass support.
I've seen things on the forum that are DEFINITELY too explicit for PH.
Windblown_Knight
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Trainerlevel: 64

Forum Posts: 192
Posted: Mon, 09/08/2021 02:55 (1 Year ago)
Agreed, we need to stop this
starfall_
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Trainerlevel: 33

Forum Posts: 474
Posted: Mon, 09/08/2021 14:19 (1 Year ago)
with the word filter-

Show hidden content
the site is mainly javascript, so it should work like the hangman helper with extra steps, i.e.
npm install bad-words --save


i used this on my school project to help with chat programs :p


and with mods-

tw!! s^xual stuff

Show hidden content
if B is going to a-okay ahegao/hentai, but not allow a —rn ⭐️ fully clothed and no k^nky stuff, why allow ahegao in the first place??? /vu /srs

SoulStar
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Trainerlevel: 44

Forum Posts: 347
Posted: Mon, 09/08/2021 14:59 (1 Year ago)
Maybe every time something in the word filter is posted, mods will receive notifications so they can remove those posts?
Avatar by HisuianZorua
Amuu
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Trainerlevel: 53

Forum Posts: 838
Posted: Mon, 09/08/2021 16:09 (1 Year ago)
Quote from Finhawk"I'm guessing there's been just a very clear cut "nothing explicit" ruling on images that has the loop holes of cropping or strategic covering up of parts that have been exploited by users. Or there hasn't been clear guidelines provided to the mods on what's allowed and what's not and individual mods have made their own calls."


This I agree with. It's clear that mods have had to make their own judgement about things like this, with loopholes such as cropping and censorship causing split decisions! As I said in my post, I think the rule against inappropriate content definitely needs a revamp to outline things that are and are not okay. Honestly? Rather than a small page with the rules, I think there should be a sectioned forum post that goes into greater detail about the rules. A good example of this is the Chicken Smoothie rules. This forum thread delves into subjects such as what things are considered personal information (as personal information is not allowed to be shared on the site) and what isn't, giving moderators a clear guide on what to look for. It's easy to navigate with links to each sections, and has bolded sections to help outline the key points of each point.

Quote from Finhawk"[...] lack of tools to handle the issue for the mods and/or simply a lack of mods."


This, I also agree with. As ex mods have stated that moderators do not have the permission to edit profile pictures and other things revolving around profiles, it does make taking down content violating the rules a lot harder, as they either:

a. Have to ask the user, who may not reply or comply with the request.
b. Ask Riako to remove it himself, and, judging by his schedule, he's often very busy to do so.

Quote from Finhawk"Whenever issues crop up, Riako and the mods don't tend to speak on it much before they reach a verdict, which leaves the userbase to guess and fuel whatever is happening. Just a simple "We have heard your concerns and Riako and the mod team are currently discussing it." would be an excellent start to calm things down a bit whenever problems arise."


Like the situation with an ex wiki manager! People believed that nothing was being done and was being kept under wraps, which led to a mass spreading of a hashtag.

Furthermore, when I reported a user for some... not so savoury actions they had done, the mods were silent for multiple days, only having them view their profile. I ended up taking this to Riako, who brushed it off and told me to report it.
I already had.
I ended up having to message a mod directly, the same one who viewed the users' profile, and finally perma banned them. This took such a long time, when it all could have been sorted out through the report itself. It's not very comforting when you and multiple others feel like you've been ignored for reporting the same thing.

Quote from Sandara"[...] I think what we need right now is 2 new types of Staff Members the don't necessarily need authority in the game, more like they will be like "watchers" that analyses whats going on in the game"


Honestly? I disagree. You see, moderators are given different places in the forums to moderate, so I do not see why they can't have this same responsibility when it comes to other things. If anything, I think we need to have forum and general moderators.

- Forum Moderators: Responsible for scanning over forums. For example, CatLady is in charge of the Complaint/Suggestions forums, Bokuto is responsible for the Roleplay forums, etc. (Obviously with mod numbers, moderators may have more sections to look over due to the amount of sections and moderators).

- General Moderators: Responsible for looking at user profiles, feeds, general activities on the site (like trade messages, PMs, etc.) these users would have the perms to change profile content if it breaches any Pokéheroes rules.

Splitting mods between these two brackets would not only allow a good spread of moderators from the same time zones doing different things (such as Jacharias on General and Ravenswing on Forum, as they share time zones), but it also opens up more mod positions AND cuts the jobs of the moderators by a considerable margin, as they do not need to handle both things at once.

Quote from Sandara"Also, I do not and never will agree that pictures that contain no nudity are appropriate for children, it's actually my first time someone told me that it's only inappropriate if there is nudity, then I question myself if you are doing a thousand-piece puzzle of an animal in which nobody showed you the whole puzzle, wouldn't you be able to tell at least which animal species it was and have some idea of the whole picture just by completing some of the pieces?"


This is a perfect analogy. It explains everything perfectly! Sums everything up well in an easy to understand statement.

Quote from Drachiron"while i do agree with the word filter, people can easily find a loophole with it by spacing out the words, so inappopriate language, while still needing to be monitored, will be hard to make sure people don't casually curse 24/7"


I understand completely where you're coming from with the bypass. However, you can easily add word bypasses to the script to block words, too! Say for example... Pikachu! Pikachu is a super rude word, and you shouldn't use it! People may bypass by spelling it as P1k4chu! That word can be added to the block list as well.

Quote from Sparks"As you said about the time gaps between where there is a lack of moderation just because of time-zones of moderators, just like that there had been a language issue where the slurs and those inappropriate words have been used too much BUT in other languages too. Just because of the linguistic barriers, Staff had not been able to identify those words in time."


This is also a great stance, I did not even THINK about different languages! I know that some websites have rules against using other languages in public feeds. PH almost achieves this, with the following rule:

Quote from Pokéheroes Rules"3.1 You may only speak English in our forums (with the exception of the Country Clan section)."


However, this only covers forum threads, and not general feeds. I mean, who knows if the Country Clan forums have any swearing in different languages too?
Whilst it can be easy to slap feeds into translators, it does take up time and some online translators can sometimes not be very accurate! We definitely need more moderators who know different languages, as well as mods based in different timezones.

Quote from PokeStar01"Maybe every time something in the word filter is posted, mods will receive notifications so they can remove those posts?"


I do not personally see a point in this when you could just have a pop up that comes up on the screen that tells you that you cannot post a feed as it contains inappropriate language; it would just cause more work for the mod team, who have a lot on their plates already, I'm sure!

Thank you everyone for your support, I'm happy to keep this discussion up - I hope I have made sense in my response!
HeartOfAWizard
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Trainerlevel: 36

Forum Posts: 140
Posted: Mon, 09/08/2021 16:21 (1 Year ago)
You have my support~

I like the idea of Forum & General moderators. To me, it feels like the forums and the feeds are separate parts of PH. And honestly, I'm surprised there aren't more moderators because there's more of a need for them.
I am a human, yes. A wizard, in fact. But still a human.

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*You now feel obligated to visit my art shop Trade shop* XDDD

Ooo is that a horsea?

Amuu
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Trainerlevel: 53

Forum Posts: 838
Posted: Mon, 09/08/2021 16:31 (1 Year ago)
Quote from HeartOfAWizard"And honestly, I'm surprised there aren't more moderators because there's more of a need for them."


We recently had a few moderators resign, and one MiT did not pass to become a mod! I'd love to be a mod myself, I've always wanted to be an advocate for keeping the site safe, but, I'd be part of the problem with time zones as I'm from the UK.

Hopefully more are recruited soon!
SoulStar
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Trainerlevel: 44

Forum Posts: 347
Posted: Mon, 09/08/2021 18:43 (1 Year ago)
@Amuu I guess that's true, I didn't think of that XD
Avatar by HisuianZorua
Sandara
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Forum Posts: 175
Posted: Mon, 09/08/2021 21:20 (1 Year ago)
I said "don't necessarily need authority in the game" because I have noticed that they really take time choosing who can be a Staff member, I agree that it would be awesome if we had some more Mods with authority, but I think they will take their time choosing wisely, plus as you can see in the PokeHeroes Panel they are currently in process of choosing some more Mods (4-6 as stated), but nobody can apply anymore: "We are sorry, but you didn't apply for Round #1 in time! Round #2 has already started".

Not that it's a bad thing that they choose wisely and don't trust any player, but I think we need something that can be done more immediately, that's where I gave the idea of "watchers".

But I will be really happy if they do accept new Mods, I think it will be easier for us and for them too.
English is not my first language, please understand
Amuu
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Trainerlevel: 53

Forum Posts: 838
Posted: Mon, 09/08/2021 21:33 (1 Year ago)
Quote from Sandara"[...] plus as you can see in the PokeHeroes Panel they are currently in process of choosing some more Mods (4-6 as stated), but nobody can apply anymore: "We are sorry, but you didn't apply for Round #1 in time! Round #2 has already started"."


The panel has not been updated for multiple months now, it's been like that for a very long time!
Mod applications have not been open for a long while - the recent 3 MiTs were all recruited behind the scenes due to their help around the site.