I wanted to address some things that I think have been progressing unhealthily in the last few months.
Let me first get this out of the way: Preferring one company over another, liking one service over another, supporting one developer over another, or just having an opinion that is different from your fellows is common, natural, and not an issue. N4G is what it is, but at its core, it's an amalgamation of people with opinions that are not required to line up behind one opinion or where people are required to be ruled by the majority or loudest voice on a topic.
What isn't natural, though, is how we learn to defend these opinions. Rather than learn to agree to disagree, we hold our opinions in such high regard that we begin to support an opinion with tangential data not specific to said opinion ("most consoles sold this generation say what?"), utilize various logical fallacies ("Review scores say otherwise"), or hold onto facts that we don't understand and often misuse ("custom RDNA 2" in general).
Regardless of these faults in our arguments, though, the general use of them isn't necessarily purposeful or ill-intent. It's how we've evolved to defend our opinions. It's how we've evolved to respond to attacks.
As moderators, it's our task to not just restrict or ban people for having opinions or for just being wrong, but for purposefully antagonizing, eliciting negative responses, and playing a game aimed at a person or group of people and not their arguments. It's also our job to determine when someone deserves a restriction or ban, not when a part of the community believes they deserve it. A task itself seeped in perception bias from every party involved. A task the moderation team wishes they honestly didn't have to partake in, but we do and that is that.
So what is all this about?
We've seen a progression in the use of submissions and reports as fuel for these opinions.
This is troubling because the purpose of submissions is to allow the community to submit gaming news and not to antagonize specific N4G users. And, the purpose of reports is to ensure that the submissions follow our guidelines.
We understand there's a lot of opinion on the upcoming hardware. We understand, as briefly explained above, how people learn to defend these opinions. It's a heated time in the community. There is a lot of missing information, many rumors, many opinions from industry professionals, and just so many things changing as companies start to define who they are in the upcoming generation and what this means for gamers.
Regardless of this, we would like to reiterate a few things as well as add an amendment to a guideline regarding submission relevance.
SUBMISSIONS HAVE GUIDELINES FOR A REASON
Our guidelines exist to keep submissions honest and to make sure they all stand equally based on those guidelines. When people submit things that don't abide by those guidelines, and when people approve those same submissions without regard to our guidelines, they are not working under good faith.
You can disagree with our guidelines, that is your right. But, you still have to follow them. And failure to do so regularly, let alone to do so to push specific news, will likely result in restrictions or outright bans.
Ignorance is not an acceptable defense, especially after months of repeated issues.
LAME REPORTS ACT TO OPPOSE APPROVALS
There exists no system in place that allows a person to disapprove of a submission. This is why lame reports exist. Lame reports represent the opinion of the user that the content is not appropriate for or of good enough quality for N4G.
But, this opinion doesn't apply to actual news. News is news. It can't just be disregarded because you don't want it to be seen. The guidelines regarding the quality and sourcing of news already exist in our guidelines. For the validity of whether a submission is allowed, per our guidelines, users should use the other submission report options, including 'Other' for those items not covered by the other report options. You can also submit a ticket to the mod team from https://n4g.com/tickets/add... about submission issues.
If you start to use the lame report to try and stifle actual news, and nothing else, it will likely result in restrictions or outright bans.
UPDATED GUIDELINES ON SUBMISSIONS
As of today, we have updated the guidelines regarding industry professional (developers or publishers) opinions on topics related to hardware and not their game.
You can see the update to these guidelines at https://n4g.com/user/blogpo...
Specifically, we have updated our guidelines as follows:
"c) a generic tweet or single response interview item from an industry professional may not be relevant if it provides no new information, is an opinion and not news on hardware, or is a generic response without any specifications as to how something may or may not be handled;"
This update is to further clarify relevance as well as to plug what we find to be a loophole that people, especially journalists, have utilized to sell headlines rather than actual news that is relevant rather than just the opinion of one person among many.