Observations

General discussion about tracking, help and support.
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kfaraday
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Re: Observations

Postby kfaraday » Sun Aug 02, 2015 7:50 am

the original/cover sections of the forum aren't zones for criticism and never have been, or should be; they're just places to show people your work

if you want to dispense insight/help others improve then you first need musicians to tell you what they want to achieve, so that you can then help them with a path towards that goal. otherwise you're just applying your vague personal standards unevenly for no reason and the music becomes exactly what you get; bland and unfocused

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Potentialing
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Re: Observations

Postby Potentialing » Sun Aug 02, 2015 8:31 am

kfaraday wrote:the original/cover sections of the forum aren't zones for criticism and never have been, or should be; they're just places to show people your work

if you want to dispense insight/help others improve then you first need musicians to tell you what they want to achieve, so that you can then help them with a path towards that goal. otherwise you're just applying your vague personal standards unevenly for no reason and the music becomes exactly what you get; bland and unfocused

Also very good points. However, if the Originals/Covers sections are just places to post work and most of the people are leaving because of newcomers posting stuff and ending up getting more noticed than stuff like whole soundtracks, then isn't it rather counterintuitive? It sounds more like the Original/Covers section exists for people to see, without commenting.

If that is the case, it feels like there's a gray line in situations whether or not people want feedback for improvement without saying so. If we split the forums into criticism/showoff sections, I can only imagine that getting messy/confusing.

What if there was some kind of forum feature for topic posters (because I wonder how many newcomers will actually read the rules), where they can mark their threads whether or not they want to hear criticism on their work? Otherwise we'd have to ask for each thread poster manually within the thread, which I think would get messy (bumping, waste of time) and potentially put the thread creator in an awkward position where the person says he/she doesn't want criticism.

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Re: Observations

Postby 8BitZtunerYT » Sun Aug 02, 2015 8:36 am

^ I agree with that.
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Threxx
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Re: Observations

Postby Threxx » Sun Aug 02, 2015 1:11 pm

My post was not necessarily meant as an order to the boards, but as a catalyst for discussion. I see that has been accomplished, which shows people are aware of the problems in our current state of affairs.

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Dr. Merio
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Re: Observations

Postby Dr. Merio » Sun Aug 02, 2015 3:18 pm

Potentialing wrote:What if there was some kind of forum feature for topic posters (because I wonder how many newcomers will actually read the rules), where they can mark their threads whether or not they want to hear criticism on their work? Otherwise we'd have to ask for each thread poster manually within the thread, which I think would get messy (bumping, waste of time) and potentially put the thread creator in an awkward position where the person says he/she doesn't want criticism.

I don't think this is necessary at all, since practically everyone would want to receive comments on their music (otherwise why are we posting?). I agree that the way it is now, where people barely comment on others' work, is a big problem here. Not knowing whether you're going to receive meaningful comments on your tracks is something that is really discouraging.

The right thing to do would be encouraging more meaningful comments, but seeing as people can't even be bothered to read the rules anymore, I doubt this would work at all.


Gamma wrote:To do more than simply criticize the state of affairs, I think something that may help the community grow would be more events in general. Run a monthly compo or something, it'll drum up peoples' interest in composing, and the voting process will dramatically increase the likelihood of people engaging with the works presented. There may even be room for critique and encouragement after the fact!

I agree 100%. We already have one dead compo up, which hasn't been updated for almost two months though. I myself would host another one when that other compo is officially over, but I don't see that happening anytime soon.

Otherwise, I think it would be cool to host a monthly compo. Those are fun, and it'll likely encourage people to improve, and engage with the community.


Gamma wrote:There's also been multiple occasions where I found something via search and I really wanted to comment on it (usually a module), but the weird rules surrounding "necro" posting which more often than not resulted in locked threads prevented me from doing so. It gave me the feeling that there's a very short window of time where you're allowed to appreciate something, and this led to me commenting on topics even less than I did before.

Yeah, it can be a problem. Necroposting is harmful when, for example, the person who posted the song you're commenting on is gone. The comment you're posting will not be received by the person you intended, which is a waste. For cases where people are still active in the forums, I don't see it as much of a problem since they'll still read your comment, most likely, although you still have to consider that the newer threads are getting pushed down in favor of something old.
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Potentialing
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Re: Observations

Postby Potentialing » Sun Aug 02, 2015 4:30 pm

Dr. Merio wrote:
Potentialing wrote:What if there was some kind of forum feature for topic posters (because I wonder how many newcomers will actually read the rules), where they can mark their threads whether or not they want to hear criticism on their work? Otherwise we'd have to ask for each thread poster manually within the thread, which I think would get messy (bumping, waste of time) and potentially put the thread creator in an awkward position where the person says he/she doesn't want criticism.

I don't think this is necessary at all, since practically everyone would want to receive comments on their music (otherwise why are we posting?). I agree that the way it is now, where people barely comment on others' work, is a big problem here. Not knowing whether you're going to receive meaningful comments on your tracks is something that is really discouraging.

The right thing to do would be encouraging more meaningful comments, but seeing as people can't even be bothered to read the rules anymore, I doubt this would work at all.

Sorry if I wasn't clear, but I was specifically referring to feedback for improvement. As for why we're posting... That's actually the question I wondered in my post, after the poster before me emphasized the purpose of the sections being mainly for showing off work. Then, I elaborated on my thoughts briefly considering (then dismissing) splitting the forums into showoff and criticism sections. So, I still think marking threads could create a solution to remedy the gray line for the criticism issue.

Positive feedback does feel lazy often, though, so I definitely agree with you there.

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Dr. Merio
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Re: Observations

Postby Dr. Merio » Sun Aug 02, 2015 5:29 pm

The problem is that encouraging (or even worse, forcing) everyone to post helpful comments is not viable. The old Show Off Your Work section wasn't just intended as a place to post stuff and be done with it. Even the section's description says that it's a place to post music and receive feedback, so saying it was just to post stuff is not right, because that wasn't its purpose. The same applies to the new music sharing sections.

Marking threads would probably help, but I'm pretty sure that almost everyone would mark theirs, because who posts stuff here just for the sake of posting it? Besides, if someone doesn't want criticism, then why are they posting here in the first place?


Anyway, I understand how giving the same constructive feedback to every new person who comes here gets boring really quickly, which is why a lot of us resort to the kind of "yes good m8" comments. It would be great if people would look at the wiki, and if they also listened to other people's works and learned from them more often, but it's something that rarely happens. Also, new people usually come here and post their music hoping to get comments and quickly learn from the more skilled people, but that seems to be turning into a thing from the past now that a lot of us aren't commenting anymore.

We also have the selected few assholes who join to troll the boards and/or leave sarcastic comments, which seems to be an increasing trend as of lately, but I guess that happens everywhere else too.

Let's see what the future holds for these forums. I'd like to encourage everyone to be a little more constructive towards others if possible, because that way we'll build a healthier community.
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sirocyl
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Re: Observations

Postby sirocyl » Mon Aug 03, 2015 8:49 am

Just a random idea, but what if we allowed anonymous posting of FTM/NSF's?

I had a bit of a lightbulb go off, and I might work on more implementation-level stuff, but I was thinking of setting up a SOYW-only messageboard, which allows anonymous posting, gives you the option to post a file with no comment section, and integrates NES music formats into itself and allows on-site previewing.

First off, I'd use an anonymous/semianon discussion platform. Something that works like 4chan or 8chan, but with the option of verified/login accounts.
I'd set up the file uploader to accept .NSF, .FTM, .FTI, .DMC and a couple other necessary filetypes.
For NSF's, it would then render a preview, playable in-browser, and for FTM's, it would use a stripped-down Famiplayer server-side to output an NSF.
I'm not sure if we would have the audio preview rendering be done server-side, which will potentially take up a lot of space and CPU time, or client-side in JS, which may not work 100%... but the original file will be available to download.
The OP of the thread containing their file can specify with a checkbox whether they want to receive public criticism or not - i.e., whether or not the thread is closed on posting. Admins and mods will be able to respond, but users will see a locked thread.

I'm somewhat thinking of the function and format of mmltalks.appspot.com (which appears to be down at the moment...)

It's just a brainstorm, but if anyone wants it, I could light a fire on it and get working.

Livoh773
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Re: Observations

Postby Livoh773 » Thu Aug 06, 2015 1:55 am

I am thinking that with monthly compos just good things could happen. For newcomers ( I am one ) then there would be a constant - high quality - source to learn neat tricks. I guess that most of the time, tracks posted in the Original section are not that awesome, and most of the time are from newcomers looking for helpful feedback while they learn ( I did it with my first post, I am still planning on doing it, heck but not in a mediocre way! ) am I right? Having an event to bring the best from the already good composers can just be good. Newcomers learn, everyone enjoy good music, and good artist may gain new followers.

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LarryLarington
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Re: Observations

Postby LarryLarington » Tue Aug 11, 2015 2:33 pm

Wow a lot of great perspectives here! Really love that we can talk about this kind of stuff.

Obviously, in an ideal world everyone on this forum would post tracks, write constructive crticism, participate in events, etc but obviously that's not the case. Many newcomers might feel intimidated and no one has the time to respond to three pages of unanswered threads. Is there a problem with how people view this community or with the setup of the community itself? I'm not sure.

I joined this forum because I wanted to be a part of a group that shares the same passions that I have. Seeing other people working hard and contributing makes ME want to work hard and contribute, so setting a good example for others in the community is one of the most realistic things we can do in my opinion. Posting, writing and participating encourages others to do the same and contribute respectfully and meaningfully.

Sure, not everyone will catch on, but the people who do are more likely to become permanent members of the community. I think I'd prefer that to a constantly revolving door of new members who don't find a reason to stay here.

Another point I'd like to make is that writing criticism isn't always about helping the person you're criticizing -- it can also be about helping yourself. I've learned a lot from the mistakes/methods of others and I don't think that will ever stop no matter how good I get. So be selfish once in a while, write some (constructive) criticism for your own sake.

It's the small efforts of many people that can bring about long-lasting change, and this is definitely a start. I'll see if I can chip away at that three pages of unanswered threads. ;)
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