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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2007 3:41 pm 
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Well, this is a good point. We should have the web forum address posted on the Guild Pub imager. Since there's no way to "sticky posts" on imagers, that means some people going in every day to repost it if necessary.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2007 5:31 pm 
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Belford, if you were responding to my post, you may have misunderstood my point.

I was not saying that players should be directed to forums to find out whether something might possibly be happening at any time.
I was saying that if specific votes are to be held, players can be easily notified of these events in many ways, including on the Pub imagers.

You're right - the imagers are not "owned" by anyone, and that's as it should be at this point. It does seem that the turnover of material on the Writers' imager has been quite slow as of late, especially since no one is coming in and arrogantly clearing the imager on an hourly basis, as was the case during episode 8.

Or maybe it's just because the Writers' Guild is on strike? :wink:

And if you're suggesting that votes should be centralized around the forums at guildofwriters.com, I will point out that, just like these forums, they are using phpBB, which permits players to register under as many aliases as one likes, and thereby to vote as many times as one likes. If you consider that to be a fair system, so be it, but I'd choose to have no part in it.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2007 8:08 pm 
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With the risk of this becoming a flame bait, I'm just gonna point out a few things.

1) Contrary to popular American belief, life isn't democratic.
The people I work for aren't chosen democratically.
The DRC isn't chosen democratically.
The persons holding shares of a company aren't chosen democratically.

And even in politics, the best you can get with voting isn't really democracy. It's in fact essentially an elected dictatorship with limited timespan.

Having [Elections, terms and majority voting], isn't the only legitimate or viable way to have a leadership. No amount of repeating that it is, will make it that way.
Don't be an "election fundamentalist" by (appearently) trying to force everyone onto your system of democracy.

(Note that I'm not providing an opinion on democracy, just on the view that one form of it should be the only way everything everywhere should be handled.)

2) We are currently forming guilds, as per Cyans request.
It's obvious they want them. It's obvious they want us to form them. That's what we're doing.
There's nothing explicitly unofficial or explicitly official about such groups.
Let me explain:
2a)"Unofficial" implies that it's a total fan initiative without ties to Cyan Since it is not, as the initiative was encouraged by Cyan, and they made it clear that they want us to form guilds, it's inappropriate to say you're the "unofficial guild of ...."
2b)As "official" implies that a particular group is already recognized by Cyan, it is also inappropriate to claim you're the "official guild of..."

3) It seems like people are constantly negatively criticizing whole efforts, based on assumptions about details.
Like e.g. the "official/unofficial" debacle, which is based on two assumptions: a)That there is a degree of officialness, and b) that this will matter when groups are recognized by Cyan.

It's important that we don't force assumptions like this through people's throats. One: they won't like it and lose the fun. Two: Your assumption may be wrong, just as much as it may be right.

I don't even pretend to understand what these people are afraid of, or why they appear to hammer down well-meant efforts on small details. But if they really want to have these guilds, and have fan efforts, they should keep things constructive, and not bicker on details.

4) To conclude about the guilds, and taking the Guild of Writers as an example:

It's a group of people who want to have fun writing ages. As long as they are constructive, and helpful, and getting an organized group, as cyan wants, they should be allowed to keep that fun.
Ultimately it doesn't matter if they claim to be official, or claim to be unofficial, or claim to be neither, or even if there is such a thing as "official or unofficial".
What matters is that they get together, write ages, do a good job of it, and have fun doing it.
They don't even have any power until Cyan grants it.
And when Cyan is ready to declare existance of officialness, and prepares to grant it to a group, only then do details like group organization, officialness, and other details even begin to matter/

The same goes for the Guild of Maintainers, the Guild of Messengers and the Guild of Cartographers:
It's important that there is a group ready to take up the job, and prepared to do it the way Cyan wants it. To achieve that they need to be able to have fun establishing themselves.

Ok, I've got my post out. If you read it this far, thanks for putting up with me. If you're one of the people offended by my words, please forgive me for offending you, but also please try to see my point(s). They really are meant to be constructive ;)

Edited for formatting.


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2007 12:10 am 
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Belford, if you were responding to my post, you may have misunderstood my point.


I was responding to darkling27's comment: "...Give up because there are no obvious leads in game saying, 'hey, we have communities on the web, come visit some of us, here n here or here.'"

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And if you're suggesting that votes should be centralized around the forums at guildofwriters.com...


I'm not (here) suggesting that we need votes at all. However, that site is where most of the Writers discussion is happening. You certainly can't take part in the outcome if you don't know it exists.

The problems facing the Guilds today are not sock puppets or rigged elections. Those problems *could* happen; but the *current* problems are communication, organization, and focus. Let's do that stuff first, and worry about where it breaks down when it *does* break down.

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2007 12:15 am 
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And to that end, if you're interested in participating in this whole Guild development structure, you're more than welcome to come to the monthly Guild communication meetings held by JFT in Kirel. Next one is December 1st.

Among the things we discussed today was the need for better communication with explorers. To that end, the various Guilds will (hopefully) be putting together a KI-based newsletter for distribution via the Cavern Criers. Still not an ideal solution, and it'd be nice if those newsletters also found their way onto the pub imagers, but it's a start. The idea was also floated of having Cyan send out a global KI message with Guild information in it. That's something I'd definitely be interested in pursuing, but it should perhaps wait until the individual Guild newsletters are ready for distribution.

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2007 10:55 am 
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Next one is December 1st.

Ill try my best to be there, I would of come along to the meeting yesterday, but RL and birthday parties got in the way :P

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a KI-based newsletter for distribution via the Cavern Criers

That is a good start. One of the best ways to get people interested in the guilds are to let them know what is happening and what projects are under development at the moment!

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The idea was also floated of having Cyan send out a global KI message with Guild information in it

That would be a lot better, then it can be assumed that everyone will get the news and read it. But a more personal newsletter made by the guilds, but then distributed by Cyan would be even better.

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.Give up because there are no obvious leads in game saying, 'hey, we have communities on the web, come visit some of us, here n here or here.

I think this is a definite must have. Even if its just a link to a page here on this site with the guilds links on it. At least it gives the explorer choice to look into it if they choose too.

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2007 3:36 pm 
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Wow. Good post trylon. Well said.

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2007 5:48 pm 
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I agree 110% with every word of Trylon's post


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 12, 2007 7:57 am 
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trylon wrote:
With the risk of this becoming a flame bait, I'm just gonna point out a few things.

If you consider discussing any disagreement to be a flame, then this will be a flame, because I disagree almost 100% with nearly everything you’ve written. However, I do hope we can have a reasoned discussion about what I consider to be a very crucial topic.
trylon wrote:
1) Contrary to popular American belief, life isn't democratic.
The people I work for aren't chosen democratically.
The DRC isn't chosen democratically.
The persons holding shares of a company aren't chosen democratically.

Trylon, the examples you’ve chosen are ALL from the corporate world: of course they’re not going to be examples of democracy! And the snide comment about “American popular belief” was unnecessary.
trylon wrote:
And even in politics, the best you can get with voting isn't really democracy. It's in fact essentially an elected dictatorship with limited timespan.

In contemporary worldwide politics, corporate rules seem to prevail. However, as you get to more and more localized forms of government, I’ve seen some outstanding examples of democracy in action (City Councils, community groups). And historically, at the level of clubs – which certainly is about the level we’re at – democracy and use of Robert’s Rules are more the rule than the exception: because they work!
trylon wrote:
Having [Elections, terms and majority voting], isn't the only legitimate or viable way to have a leadership. No amount of repeating that it is, will make it that way.

There have been a few examples in history of benevolent dictatorships. Are those what what you’re referring to? Because you haven’t given any examples of the other legitimate and viable means of establishing the “leadership” that you mention, and that so many here seem to crave.
trylon wrote:
Don't be an "election fundamentalist" by (appearently) trying to force everyone onto your system of democracy.

Fortunately URU is structured such that none of us can force any of the others of us to do anything in-game! Stating one's opinion about something on these forums is a far cry from forcing anyone to do anything! It sure sounds like you have quite the opposition to the voting process, though.
trylon wrote:
(Note that I'm not providing an opinion on democracy, just on the view that one form of it should be the only way everything everywhere should be handled.)

You had me fooled there with your statements on democracy above. I’d truly appreciate your outlining the other forms of democracy that you see as viable. Or if you see a non-democratic organizational structure as preferable, then that should be a point of discussion.
trylon wrote:
3) It seems like people are constantly negatively criticizing whole efforts, based on assumptions about details.

Though you might consider it to be a mistake, people do that when they learn that they have no say in the group to which they belong (sometimes it’s even worse when they belong by choice rather than force). Even the most benevolent of dictators has had uprisings simply because they were not elected to their positions.
trylon wrote:
I don't even pretend to understand what these people are afraid of, or why they appear to hammer down well-meant efforts on small details. But if they really want to have these guilds, and have fan efforts, they should keep things constructive, and not bicker on details.
Ultimately it doesn't matter if they claim to be official, or claim to be unofficial, or claim to be neither, or even if there is such a thing as "official or unofficial".

I hope you don’t consider it to be a mere detail when a group claims to be the “official” Guild of this-or-that. The term implies Cyan sanction. Newcomers take these things pretty seriously and it matters a great deal if a group claims such a distinction – especially if Cyan later chooses otherwise. And if it doesn’t matter, why then there can be as many Guilds of Maintainers as people want to form, right?
trylon wrote:
4) To conclude about the guilds, and taking the Guild of Writers as an example:
It's a group of people who want to have fun writing ages. As long as they are constructive, and helpful, and getting an organized group, as cyan wants, they should be allowed to keep that fun.

Nobody, IC or OOC, can possibly take that constructive, creative fun away from any of us (except for Cyan perhaps)
trylon wrote:
The same goes for the Guild of Maintainers, the Guild of Messengers and the Guild of Cartographers: It's important that there is a group ready to take up the job, and prepared to do it the way Cyan wants it.

And here we are back at the crux of the matter: we have no idea whatsoever of what way Cyan might want the job done. Therefore there is no possible way to prepare for the unknown eventuality that Cyan might one day define the rules of the Guild game. And repeating “we’re prepared” won’t make it so. For the foreseeable future, we’re on our own.

It’s my hope that we can have reasonable discussions about how to form organizations that will endure. Many of us have hoped to see URU develop for several years now, and would prefer to work toward consensual resolutions rather than be rushed into groups in which we have little or no influence.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 12, 2007 3:21 pm 
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"I hope you don’t consider it to be a mere detail when a group claims to be the “official” Guild of this-or-that."

I consider it to be a straw man. No Guild has done that. (I just looked at the five big Guild pages, just to be sure.) Until one does, this is a non-issue.

"The term implies Cyan sanction."

Does it? Every argument I've seen over the term "official" has jumped straight to the accusations of hubris and lying. None of them have discussed what "official" might mean.

"And if it doesn’t matter, why then there can be as many Guilds of Maintainers as people want to form, right?"

That's correct. Multiple Guilds of Maintainers (or Writers, etc) would make Uru stronger.

I know that statement looks stupid, so I will unpack it further:

Uru will be stronger if each Guild is set up to see "competing" groups on its turf as allies rather than imposters. If a bunch of people start writing Ages without using the current Guild of Writers web site, our[*] response should be "Awesome! Let us know if we can help."

If, in the long term, they write *better* Ages -- and maintain a better web site, run better forums, provide better help to newcomers -- then momentum will eventually shift to their community as being "the" Guild of Writers community. And people will shift over to that structure too. This happens all the time in Internet communities.

What *shouldn't* happen is for that process to get snarled up in accusations that "You aren't official!" or "You aren't the *real* Guild of Writers!" People crash, burn, and stomp away in that kind of argument; it weakens both groups and Uru as a whole.

That's why "official" shouldn't be a big deal, or any kind of flash point.

[* I am speaking as a current participant in the GoW forums.]

Same logic applies to the goals of the Maintainers.

[EDIT-ADD: Of course, I post this and then go on to read the "Joe Q. Explorer" thread, where onslaughtq *does* examine what the term "official" does or might mean. My view is, unsurprisingly, much in accord with his.]

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 12, 2007 4:02 pm 
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Interesting enough, I've spent time looking for what some might see as "Competative" groups.

So far, I can not find any other group calling themselves Maintainers in any shape and form.

Nor for the Cartographers or Greeters.

As for the Writers, it seems that many of the people out there that were either soloing or had groups seemed to have banded together. But at the same time, I've failed to find any other group out there calling themselves GoW, or Pre-GoW, etc.

Messengers, well theirs can be a rather confusing group in that there are so many different groups out there making reports, giving news, documentaries, Relaying, etc, etc. But at the same time it is starting to look as though some of these groups are trying very hard to get together for a Messengers guild.

Competition is great! But so far I'm not seeing a lot of this. My main thought on why is that like minded people tend to gravitate together in the first place.

As for the arguments on the words "official" etc, I won't touch that subject as it's just fuel for the trolls out there. You either feel strongly one way or another, but I do have to agree with one thing: Arguing about it is simply a waste of time and energy that can be spent better else where.

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 12, 2007 4:50 pm 
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Cully Barger wrote:
trylon wrote:
With the risk of this becoming a flame bait, I'm just gonna point out a few things.

If you consider discussing any disagreement to be a flame, then this will be a flame, because I disagree almost 100% with nearly everything you’ve written. However, I do hope we can have a reasoned discussion about what I consider to be a very crucial topic.


Well, reading your post, it seems you agree with me very much, perhaps you just misunderstood what I was trying to say.
(And in my experience, pointing our that you know people may react fiery on your posts, tends to cool things down beforehand)

Quote:
trylon wrote:
1) Contrary to popular American belief, life isn't democratic.
The people I work for aren't chosen democratically.
The DRC isn't chosen democratically.
The persons holding shares of a company aren't chosen democratically.

Trylon, the examples you’ve chosen are ALL from the corporate world: of course they’re not going to be examples of democracy!

Exellent. You agree with me on that. My point was simply that not every group is by default democratic, and that appearently not every group needs to be an electoriate to be organized.
(And, I did say, "life", right? not "politics" of "groups". Most of my life I actually have to deal with people working according to the examples I mentioned.)

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And the snide comment about “American popular belief” was unnecessary.

Perhaps it was. It was not meant as a snide comment however.
It was basically a reflection on how from an outsider perspective, American democracy seems to be centered around elections and campaining.

Quote:
trylon wrote:
And even in politics, the best you can get with voting isn't really democracy. It's in fact essentially an elected dictatorship with limited timespan.

In contemporary worldwide politics, corporate rules seem to prevail. However, as you get to more and more localized forms of government, I’ve seen some outstanding examples of democracy in action (City Councils, community groups). And historically, at the level of clubs – which certainly is about the level we’re at – democracy and use of Robert’s Rules are more the rule than the exception: because they work!

And, in fact you agree with me :)
It kind of depends on the definition of democracy you use.
In my post I used "democratic", where I probably should have used "electorial".

Often these words are taken as synonymously, while the term "democracy" can in fact be used to describe anything where the group "governed" has a major influence. I was however, specific in the direction of election and campaigning.

Quote:
trylon wrote:
Having [Elections, terms and majority voting], isn't the only legitimate or viable way to have a leadership. No amount of repeating that it is, will make it that way.

There have been a few examples in history of benevolent dictatorships. Are those what what you’re referring to? Because you haven’t given any examples of the other legitimate and viable means of establishing the “leadership” that you mention, and that so many here seem to crave.

Ah, you're right I didn't give an example. I felt the post would become too big if I did. First, please note that I put [Elections, terms and majority voting] in brackets, in an attempt to imply boolean AND. (In fact, I sould have included "campaining" in that set as well.)

Since we're working at "club" level, as you quite nicely pointed out above, I was referring to the system of "Election and campaigning" that seems to be the first thing considered and stressed when leadership in the guilds is discussed. It also appears that some people desperately want that system, and try to force the issue sometimes. However, at club level this is probably not the best way to handle, and in fact can produce some very strange results.

One way that I proposed in the GoW, was to have the current interim leadership inquire who would be willing to accept certain posts, and would be able to do it, based on history, or other references.
Based on this this a proposal would be made, which would be accepted or denied by the Guild. If the proposal was denied, a new proposal would be made.

The work of the new council would be mostly negotiating in problem situations and perhaps later on with Cyan, and ofcourse other things.
Any major decision would then be submitted as a proposal needed to be accepted by the Guild members.
Should furthermore Guild members want to put forth their own proposal, e.g. even a motion of distrust against the current council, they could do so if they are with three of more persons backing the proposal.

A system like this could prevent some manifestation of elected dictatorship, in which someone, after being elected breaks most campain promises, and goes their own way for the duration of the term.
It'd also give the Guild members more the feeling that their voice is heard.

Quote:
trylon wrote:
Don't be an "election fundamentalist" by (appearently) trying to force everyone onto your system of democracy.

Fortunately URU is structured such that none of us can force any of the others of us to do anything in-game! Stating one's opinion about something on these forums is a far cry from forcing anyone to do anything! It sure sounds like you have quite the opposition to the voting process, though.


It was more of a warning than a direct response to something happening.

Ofcouse, I probably used the the term "fundamentalist" incorrectly.
Since the term is often used for fanatics, who want to force their beliefs on people, even through acts of terrorism. I used the term to point out that one should be careful with their opinions, and that over stressing any opinion - also about elections - can be felt as oppressing.

Quote:
trylon wrote:
3) It seems like people are constantly negatively criticizing whole efforts, based on assumptions about details.

Though you might consider it to be a mistake, people do that when they learn that they have no say in the group to which they belong (sometimes it’s even worse when they belong by choice rather than force). Even the most benevolent of dictators has had uprisings simply because they were not elected to their positions.


Most negative criticism I've heard (and I'm inolved with both maintainer and writers) seem to be from outside the groups forming the guild.


Quote:
trylon wrote:
I don't even pretend to understand what these people are afraid of, or why they appear to hammer down well-meant efforts on small details. But if they really want to have these guilds, and have fan efforts, they should keep things constructive, and not bicker on details.
Ultimately it doesn't matter if they claim to be official, or claim to be unofficial, or claim to be neither, or even if there is such a thing as "official or unofficial".

I hope you don’t consider it to be a mere detail when a group claims to be the “official” Guild of this-or-that. The term implies Cyan sanction. Newcomers take these things pretty seriously and it matters a great deal if a group claims such a distinction – especially if Cyan later chooses otherwise. And if it doesn’t matter, why then there can be as many Guilds of Maintainers as people want to form, right?

True. There shouldn't be any guild presenting themselves as official at this point. I hope I made that clear as well. However, presenting yourself as the "unofficial guild of", can give a wrong impression to newcomers as well.

However, I wouldn't mind if currently there would be two Guilds of maintainers, or writers and Cyan'd choose one of them eventually.
(But yeah, it could be confusing for newcomers.)

Quote:
trylon wrote:
4) To conclude about the guilds, and taking the Guild of Writers as an example:
It's a group of people who want to have fun writing ages. As long as they are constructive, and helpful, and getting an organized group, as cyan wants, they should be allowed to keep that fun.

Nobody, IC or OOC, can possibly take that constructive, creative fun away from any of us (except for Cyan perhaps)

I'm glad you can take criticism so well. I hope I can too. Many can.

However, I've seen quite a few examples of people who can't. And we should take them in account as well.
One example, is Almlys, the one who wrote the first version of the Blender plugin to write ages. Without this effort, it's possible we wouldn't even have guilds, as there was no group already involved in writing ages.
However, due to repeating hard negative criticism from people who cared, and feared, and made negative assumptions - that turned out to be untrue - he went away. Unfortunately, some smart people like that which are needed, are often not able to handle negative criticism so well.
That's why criticism needs to be carefully applied in order to be effective.

Quote:
trylon wrote:
The same goes for the Guild of Maintainers, the Guild of Messengers and the Guild of Cartographers: It's important that there is a group ready to take up the job, and prepared to do it the way Cyan wants it.

And here we are back at the crux of the matter: we have no idea whatsoever of what way Cyan might want the job done. Therefore there is no possible way to prepare for the unknown eventuality that Cyan might one day define the rules of the Guild game. And repeating “we’re prepared” won’t make it so. For the foreseeable future, we’re on our own.


I fully agree. Repeating "we're prepared" won't make it so. Working based on (pseudo-random) assumptions won't make it either. And indeed we are on our own. We need to assess our borders, and work within those borders.

With "prepared" I meant in this case that they were at least willing to do things the way Cyan wants it, once there are Guidelines from Cyan. And that they would be willing to make the changes Cyan would require.

What this will be will only be known once Cyan tells us what to do, so there's no way any assumptions about how Cyan wants us to work will help. This even includes the assumption that they want only one group of each guild to form :)

While all of this forms things will go wrong. Small things will go wrong - they may have smaller or larger implications, they might need to be addressed sooner rather than later.
But it is important to always be respectful when pointing such things out, and it's important to acknowledge the good work that people do, before pointing out smaller or bigger flaws.

Unfortunately, many people in the guilds feel that the people pointing out flaws in their designs aren't repecting the work they are doing well. This is experienced as "hammering down the entire effort", and should be avoided at all costs.

Quote:
It’s my hope that we can have reasonable discussions about how to form organizations that will endure. Many of us have hoped to see URU develop for several years now, and would prefer to work toward consensual resolutions rather than be rushed into groups in which we have little or no influence.


I hope the same as you.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 12, 2007 5:23 pm 
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However, I wouldn't mind if currently there would be two Guilds of maintainers, or writers and Cyan'd choose one of them eventually.


You know the fact that there are not multiple branches of each supporter group has been seriously creepy when ever I think about it. It's also been rather cool to, groups of people stepping forward out of their own current group to form new ones.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2007 11:37 am 
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*Sigh* Okay, I read this in the hope that I would get some leads on the progress of the Guilds and just how I may help the guilds. However, with so much back and forth going on, debating semantics and bickering - yes, I said bickering I seem to have lost the thread along the way.

Now, I have used 3DMax before. I have done animation before. I can illustrate - not on a professional level, but to a degree that works. I can write (and not just "My momma really likes my stories about Benjy my dog" write). I mean I have written for competitions and enjoy writing short stories for online communities. I love Myst, Riven, and the rest of the Myst series. I have played URU (unexpanded) to completion and once my broadband issues are solved I would love to join back into the community.

Now, while the "Book of Commentary" project seems wonderful I have not been able to find much structure or even many guidelines to it. (It appears to be a wiki and not much more.)

As for the guild of writers, the forums appear to either be broken or dead. The same seems to apply to the other Guilds as well, to a greater or lesser degree.

I would like to help, but need to know how.

Help me to help you, guys. Then we can help each other to help the rest, okay?


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2007 3:46 pm 
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Here is a list of the working guild websites that I know of.

Greeters- http://www.guildofgreeters.com/

Messengers - http://messengers.sixpencemedia.com/

Maintainers - http://www.guildofmaintainers.org/conte ... _intro.php

Cartographers - http://cates-associates.net/uru/conversion.asp

Writers - http://www.guildofwriters.com/#

Unfortunately, this Guild of Writers web site didn't seem to hold much. If anyone knows of others, please post them. I hope this helps.

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