Thursday, October 17, 2013

Data Analysis 1: Rules, Rules, Rules

For my data analysis, I would like to present this bluntly titled thread: Rules of FGD (Fighting Game Discussion): Read Me First Or Be Banned IRL  This thread basically presents its own Ten Commandments for how one should regulate his or her activity within the forum.  You'll see the modal "should" appearing frequently in the moderator's posts, which of course reflects the normative purpose of such a thread.  One important thing to notice: this is a locked thread--which means no one in the community may contribute, except for those with the password authority to do so.  I feel that such a highly prescriptive, monological (single-voiced) thread represents anti-discussion; it establishes a system of rules, while negating the democratic function of group participation through the thread's lock function.  There is also a heavily penal dimension to the moderator's comments, what with all the punitive signifiers: the verbs "infracted" and "banned" being the most conspicuous.
Also, check out rule number 4.  I think such an obliging attitude toward machismo clearly indicates the gendered nature of this forum.

Here is the URL in case the link doesn't work:

1 comment:

  1. I think this is a fascinating piece of data that you have chosen Ken. What do you make of the tone of this data piece? What does this mean, especially for those who are newbies? Do you think this document would push away potential players because they feel that they might make a mistake and be banned? While I was reading your piece of data I was personally put off by the tone. It was very concrete and absolute. There were no if's, and's, or but's about it. If someone posted something incorrectly they would be penalized in some way and if the transgression was severe enough then the player would be banned. I don't think that I would be willing to risk that as a new player. It seemed so severe to me! The new player really has to watch what they are doing and proceed with extreme caution it seems.

    Is there any way that you could look into the penalties that are given to those who break these "Ten Commandments" of the site you are researching? I think some concrete consequences would be wonderful to look at from a researcher's perspective and they could help explain the tone of the data piece.

    Gook luck!