For our first installment of the Featured User Group, we're taking a look at The Spanish Inquisition. With only 72 members as of writing, they have nonetheless carved out a place for themselves as a tight group of members that care for the forums and the quality of the posts therein.
I asked several of their admins several questions about the group:
- Why was The Spanish Inquisition founded?
TSI was founded because users were concerned with the large and growing amount of unacceptable (according to the official forum guidelines) comments on the forums, and that they could not do enough on their own to remedy this. We decided to create a place where we could discuss community content and whether we, as users, found it suitable for the forums, and then use the report button with more efficiency.
Well, I think the main reason TSI was set up in the first place was because Lord Captain Sevre (he makes us call him that, otherwise we get beaten) wanted to try and help The Escapist in some way. The plan is that TSI members post links in the group chat, or the IRC channel we have (#comfychairs) and everyone else in the group reports them, thus hopefully making it easier for the mods and staff to bring the troublemakers to righteous justice!
- What was the reasoning behind the name?
Heh, the name was mostly chosen for its comedic value. Of course, it also alludes to the fact that we can be reading the forums at any given time, which lowers the chances of someone getting away with behaviour that is unacceptable as per the forum guidelines.
I'd by lying if I said the name has absolutely nothing to do with Monty Python whatsoever, so I won't say it. Or type it.
- What do you think other users could gain from the group?
The main purpose of TSI is to discuss community content, getting such off-topic discussion off the forums and [discouraging people] from creating even more content that doesn't belong there. As such, I think the discussion revolving around this is one of the most rewarding parts of being in TSI. You also get to work toward a good cause and make friends. Our atmosphere is rather friendly.
You mean, apart from the feel-good feeling of helping the community? The adrenaline rush of catching a troll? The sexy red coats and hats? Well, we have a bunch of great members, any newcomers to the group would make a bunch of new friends in the community really easily, which I feel is really important for being part of an internet forum.
- What sets you apart from other user groups?
I couldn't say our intent is it, but I think the atmosphere we've achieved by now is rather unique. People are very open with discussion on the platform TSI offers, and we always reach a good general consensus on questions. It might be a more serious user group than many other ones, but it's at the same time a place that cheers you up.
The Sexy Red Coats And Hats.
- If you could improve one aspect of the User Group area, what would you improve?
The number of members, no doubt. Activity is sporadic in TSI, and some of our users work pretty hard to keep the forums cleaner, but more members are always a good thing and something to strive for. I've managed to teach a lot not only about The Escapist, but about forums and internet behaviour at large, and I love discussing it with motivated individuals.
Personally, I would allow for levels of control for the admins of the group. So certain admins could do certain things, and others could do slightly more, or less.
- Anything else you would like to add?
Something I think is important to understand is that TSI is by no means a vigilante group or anything like that. It's easy to assume such, but we're really only a platform for discussion about community content. Yes, we have been arrogant about our role in the past, but a new era was brought on not long ago by motivated members such as myself and Zombie_Fish, and the TSI you see today is completely different. It's a place where we strive for open-mindedness and reflection, and where, indeed, philosophic questions sometimes become relevant.
I like your shades.
Thanks Neosage, they're Calvin Klein.
If you would like to nominate a user group for an upcoming Featured User Group, feel free to let me (that is, Kuliani) know through a PM!