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Thyme

Pending Applications

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I'm one of those people who actually loves apps, so it's not the app itself that I find kinda weird, but every once in a while I join (or lurk on) a site that pends literally 99.9% of applications. And I just don't understand. 

 

Maybe it's because I was a teacher and from a teaching perspective if all your kids are getting D's and F's (which is in essence what pending is, right?), then something is wrong with either your explanation or your expectations. Since most writers on roleplay sites -- especially not-beginner sites -- know how to write an app/character...

 

Anyway, it just seems like if everyone is getting pended, maybe its time to separate out more sections for your application or make more clear requirements to help guide people towards what you're looking for? I dunno.

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Either

 

1) The staff has advertised themselves in inappropriate places which has resulted in them getting members that they don't desire, or

 

2) Staff members enjoy the power high associated with pending applications.

 

That said, I guess I can see how some sites might function so that it's the expectation that all applications will be pended because they want to start dialogue about each character and figure out more about the members' intentions and goals.  But I don't think that's the case.  Plus it sucks for the member to have an application "pended" because it  makes you feel inadequate.  Like you said, Ds and Fs.

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37 minutes ago, Uaithne said:

Either

 

1) The staff has advertised themselves in inappropriate places which has resulted in them getting members that they don't desire, or

 

2) Staff members enjoy the power high associated with pending applications.

 

That said, I guess I can see how some sites might function so that it's the expectation that all applications will be pended because they want to start dialogue about each character and figure out more about the members' intentions and goals.  But I don't think that's the case.  Plus it sucks for the member to have an application "pended" because it  makes you feel inadequate.  Like you said, Ds and Fs.

 

All of the above and this is why I don't really do applications - The only way to get pended on my sites is if your face claim is taken. The only way to get denied is if you're someone I didn't want in the first place.


 

 

 

 

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I take "pending" en masse as a sign that Administration either isn't being clear about what they want, or are trying to run an Elite game where everything in the app has to be perfect down to the last speck of pollen. Kind of like....treating the Apps as the End-All-Be-All of encyclopedia of information on the character.  I personally like to keep SOME form of an App because it gives me an idea of the character we're working with and I can work on teasing them into the bigger plots (and make plots specifically inspired/around said characters) more effectively.

 

The only time I'd "pend" something is if there's something that breaks the worldlore or other serious issue. And even then, I let the member know what's up, and try to give suggestions on how to fix the issue without taking away from their character itself.

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It can definitely be a problem, but it's hard to say whether the problem is with the site itself, or with the users. Many users simply assume they know how to write an application, and therefore don't look at the requirements, which might be different on the site than what they're used to, resulting in them getting pended for things they wouldn't have been pended on if they had used the resources given.

 

 

Edited to add that I personally prefer being on a site where things are pended frequently to prevent contradictions within the narrative, but that's just me. I don't mind being told to correct things to fit in to a site, but I know some people dislike it and that's ok too.

Edited by Raven
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Wouldn't you get tired of pending them.and having people leave? Id say about 75% of first apps that require some revisions ragequit. (Which is another topic entirely.) But what the hell could be causing so many apps out on pause? 

 

I'd say another potential option is that they aren't explaining their lore right and so there's confusion between reading and writing.

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Honestly, I think I've only put a grand total of two applications to pending in the time my game's been running, and it's usually because the players just missed large chunks of the rules (more specifically just didn't read the rules, as the ones who don't think the rules apply to them usually get scared off when talking to me before their app and I won't budge). Anyone who pends (nearly) *every* application is absolutely doing something wrong. Like said above it's likely that the rules aren't clear, or their advertising efforts are just absolutely missing their mark. I mean, I suppose it's also possible that the admin team is just being micromanaging control freaks, and if that's the case, it's absolutely a blessing to all the people they alienate by pending all the apps.

 

Honestly, if I can get most applications on my game to be approved straight off, then there's no reason that most sites taking apps can't too. I have a bunch of finicky rules because of our setting, where people have to be mindful of lore and do a little bit of paying attention to existing action in the game when writing their app. By and large? Everyone gets their intel training in their history, everyone complies with the species limitations, and everyone picks their greek mythos based code name without problem. Their histories are fleshed out, and in line with both the setting's canon and the game canon. It's like people applying to join a *writing* game expect to do a little research and writing, so I generally trust my players mean well when there are hiccups and will approve an app with minor issues and a note asking for those revisions.

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on TNI most Pendings are pretty minor, and first apps that get them probably only 25% quit without fixing their app and continuing to the site? Some eventually drop in an AC after that, but they do stick around and fix their stuff. More major pendings that require serious rewriting the number is definitely higher, probably closer to the 75% you're talking about.

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There is a site I keep seeing that appears to have that issue of barely, if ever, accepting applications period. It seems everyone gets pended multiple times and just ducks. The admin appear to just want a very specific type of player or character to join. It sucks to be on the recieving end of not being "good enough" for the site, but in the long run it probably turns out to be a blessing. Chances are, they aren't a warm and welcoming community to new members behind that head canon plot gate unless they deem you worthy enough of their time. I get wanting to find people to play with that match your style and get your plot, but when I see a site posted like crazy everywhere and there are no new members passing the application, I'm going to bounce without even trying.

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4 hours ago, Uaithne said:

 I can see how some sites might function so that it's the expectation that all applications will be pended because they want to start dialogue about each character and figure out more about the members' intentions and goals.  

 

This is how I see it, not Ds and Fs. Because no character is ever rejected if the writer is willing to go through the dialogue and to make the needed changes, in order to get a stronger character, better adapted to the ongoing story and which would have a better experience in the setting.

 

 I think the same like @Raven - do NOT ask me why her name does not appear above the quote :(

 I personally prefer being on a site where things are pended frequently to prevent contradictions within the narrative, but that's just me. I don't mind being told to correct things to fit in to a site, but I know some people dislike it and that's ok too.

Edited by Elena
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16 minutes ago, Elena said:

 

This is how I see it, not Ds and Fs. Because no character is ever rejected if the writer is willing to go through the dialogue and to make the needed changes, in order to get a stronger character, better adapted to the ongoing story and which would have a better experience in the setting.

Well, there is certainly a difference between making the pending status a part of the process in order to make sure the admin team and the players are on the same page as well as making sure the character can jump right into the fun by having hooks and a well developed background, and when everyone's getting pended without any explanation or warning up front to set the expectations.

 

If this is part of your game's process, it should be established clearly before the player submits their first app. It sounded like Thyme was talking about sites that give no warning before the person apps. Establishing expectations up front if this is part of your process absolutely makes the difference here.

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You gave me an idea, @Death Kitten! I hadn't thought that I had to "give a warning" in my documentation. I will, for the upcoming site! :)

 

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On one of my sites we discuss every single app before approval. The setting is very lore-heavy and despite all the guides a lot of people ignore some essential aspect (or argue they want to use their interpretation, which would contradict everyone else's story).

 

I admit there were other debatable choices that were made (we ended up exploring and double-checking everyone's history and psychology, which in the end is quite time consuming for the mods as well), but the part on lore consistency is one that I believe it's valid.

 

On other sites I wouldn't ever follow the same standard because it takes too much time, but then I wouldn't rely again on lore that extensive.

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One of the things I worry about is whether or not people understand what I want them to do on the app, so I revised the original one I made in the hope that it will be more clear to people. Sometimes what you think makes sense to you, espeaically if you are a lone admin, doesn't make sense to others and folks shouldn't be afraid to let admins know if something is confusing them - doing so will probably help other people out too if they are having the same problem.

 

One of the problems I've had with new members is that they don't appear to have a lot of knowledge of the fandom lore - (I don't expect people to know absolutely everything from the Silmarillion, Unfinished Tales and the History of Middle-Earth, but I do want them to have a knowledge that goes beyond the superficial stuff that are in the movies, for instance.)

 

Having looked on various forums that I'd like to join, from a potential members perspective, (going beyond knowledge of the lore of a fandom, or reading the important documentation of an original setting), I would say that the simpler an application, the better.

 

Do applications really need complicated, html, or dothml templates? This is one thing I find that is a big problem on jcink sites. Do apps get pended because the code is broken? I've known some sites that reject adverts if the code is broken, so I assume that the same is true for applications. The easiest thing the admin can do so an app won't be rejected on that basis is to do away with the complicated coded app, and just have a simple bbcode one. (When my board was on proboards, I really liked the idea of a coded app template, but I assumed that all members would understand it but they didn't, so I decided to scrap it. I wouldn't have pended an app for broken code, but at the same time it's intimidating for potential members who want to join and a lot of people will just assume that the app would be pended if the code wasn't perfect. (A lot of the boards I've looked at don't make it clear if the template is optional, or not, so if a board does use them, it would be a good idea to just make it optional. It may also be a good idea to have a sample app with the template so that members can see what it should look like - but my preference would be to do away with it entirely.)

 

Another thing I've found is that sometimes restrictions on the type of characters which can be played on the board aren't made clear enough, or there is a restriction that is hidden somewhere which a potential member misses but which becomes an issue when they've finished their app. That's not their fault - restrictions should be made clear and it's unfair if a person has gone through all the trouble of making a character, fleshing out the background, make it compatible with the site lore, only to have it rejected for something they didn't come across and which could have been put more prominently in the main rules.

 

From experience, opening too early can cause potential misunderstandings. Make sure that all of your important documentation is written before opening. (Sometimes things come up which the admin hasn't thought of and that's no one's fault.)

 

I would only pend an app if:

 

- it was incomplete,

- needed changes made to correct formatting, or background inconsistencies,

 

I would reject an app if:

 

- plagiarized,

- the character type is banned,

- there are lots of errors in it, instead of a few that are easily fixable,

- the writer refuses to make changes,

 

Potential members should take their time to get to know the lore of a site, and the rules of the site before they make their application if they don't want to get it pended. Don't rush!

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I have seen admins confess that they purposely pend most applications as a test. Ever since I read that, my already low tolerance for being pended was at the lowest state possible. If I’m pended, I leave. I don’t have time for that shit. 

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