<edited for dumb mistakes using the quote tag, no content has changed>
Bob wrote:By what method are admins and/or the "eplaya task force" ranking the priority of proposed changes?
Well, first we are looking at mods, to see if they even exist. Then we would install and test on staging, and invite folks to play with it and see what they have to say. If we are sure it would work, and it's something controversial like plonking, then I was thinking we could post a poll and see how many folks really want it. I've mostly heard from folks who do, but silence doesn't always equal consent, so I want to see what others think. I know that we could do it the other way around, but I think it'll be more damaging to bait'n'switch - getting folks all excited about a mod that isn't going to happen.
Bob wrote:Are the negative effects of proposed changes (including those affecting access speed/server response) considered in the process? Or alternative solutions (including doing nothing)?
Bob wrote:Is it being considered that some solutions may fail in the absence of active moderators to explain the existence and appropriate use of features such as plonking (aka "Ignore User" or whatever)? Or that the presence of active moderators may make the need for controversial solutions moot?
It's the other way around - we are trying to enable features that reduce the need for moderation. Having moderators is far more controversial than any mod - deciding how active they can be, what the criteria is for assigning moderator privileges/duties, following up and making sure the moderators are doing a good job, and fielding feedback from the community about them - it's more than we are equipped to handle.
We will announce the changes as they come, and give some guidance/guidelines for how one may wish to use it, and how it could be used by others. We will leave it to the user to decide what is appropriate use. For plonking, the worse case "abuse" scenario I see would be for someone to plonk someone that they might have been able to be friends with had they stuck around. This is a personal choice. They'd know what they were getting into.
Is the desire for plonking related more to being a spectator, or a participant?
I don't see it as one or the other. The requests I've gotten for plonking came from active participants, but I see the choice to filter what you read as being just as valuable to lurkers.
Does the value of promoting plonking outweigh the value of promoting tolerance?
I understand where you are going with this, but do not recognize the choices we will be making as being what you state. Allowing plonking is vastly different from promoting it. I do not see the plonking option as spreading intolerance, as you seem to imply.
Bob wrote:Is there going to be a vetting process or live testing period for significant new features, outside the inner circle of those effecting changes?
Oh my yes. NOTHING is being changed without testing on staging & discussion with both the admins and any eplayans who want to participate.