Indeed, but as usual maybe a bug, maybe not …
Hello! I’ve been following this topic for some time and have gone through every point of view. Now, I will express my point of view as well, and hope I don’t offend anyone… especially since I have “many projects”.
The main problem Viki should solve, is not the number of projects, but who has access to this role. For my community, a limit on the number of projects would be a tragedy. We are extremely few moderators who fully understand this role. Not to mention that we are a very small community with few moderators anyway.
Theoretically, I can also be placed in this category of moderators with many projects. Practically, I think that’s not fair. Why? Because projects are not abandoned (I translate only by deadline and must be respected), are not translated at a poor quality level, I translate side by side with the team - even translating more than the team on some projects, all responsible volunteers are welcomed in the team and I invest all my free time in Viki. I also translate for other responsible moderators. So it can’t be said that I only enjoy being a moderator. At the moment, the number of projects where I’m just a subtitler, is higher than those where I’m a moderator/co-moderator.
Yes, it is a real problem the number of projects, when you have 60 unfinished projects and you keep applying for new projects (real case).
From the position of channel manager, I pay attention to the number of lines per project, if the volunteers in question has a subbing academy badge or if they collaborate with subbing academy coordinators/graduates, if they present their work transparently (luckily Viki gives us this possibility) and many others things. The number of projects is the last aspect that interests me.
As presented in that ticket, more should be taken into account about projects. How many episodes a project has, what is the length of the episodes, what is the release pace to all languages, how many people translate that project into a particular language. Personally, I’m a moderator on several projects where the pace of release for all languages is infernally slow.
Strictly related to the situation of my community, it would be very important that Viki provides us locally with the necessary tools/ways to limit the activity of those who have serious problems with the language they translate into. Unfortunately, they are even elected channel managers, while other responsible volunteers are not considered no matter how many projects they apply to. Why? Because apparently, from what I’ve noticed, Viki prefers volunteers with few projects. Recently I noticed that volunteers who had been inactive for days were elected managers. And they would probably still be inactive if they hadn’t been elected managers. Personally, I was shocked to see that I managed to get my first project as a channel manager, having already a number of projects as a moderator.
In conclusion, I do not want to imply that the number of projects should not be taken into account, but there may be situations when it is less important. And this differs from one community to another. Therefore, this number of projects needs to be better explained, but under no circumstances can it be discussed as an obligation.
I apologize if I deviated a bit from the main topic of the discussion and I hope I haven’t upset anyone.
Um, what? Who thinks one should literally translate at all? In fact, you should do the opposite. Did they mean completely and accurately?
Hmm… I’ve mentioned this before. There are individuals who are well-networked and find out about new channels the second that they open. They get the position based on the fact that they are the only applicant within the 24 hours after the CM has been chosen.
Also, there are those who apply to be the CM just so that they could be notified that (another) CM has been chosen, so that they can immediately send the request to be the Mod of their language. This is tactics, nothing to do about it, fine.
But I think we would all agree that none of the two ways one finds out about the channel make this applicant a better candidate. They just applied fast, that’s all.
If a CM has some time to spare before the project starts, before the upload of the first video, it might be beneficial to the project to wait and gather some more applicants. If they don’t have the time, well, so be it, circumstances demanded a quick decision.
In fact I wrote the opposite of what I meant. I shouldn’t write comments during a Management lecture.
In fact I find out about most channels rather early as well. Simply by checking the New Releases/ Coming Soon section on a regular basis. When I started to moderate channels, I figured out rather early that the ‘good projects’ are often gone immediately if I don’t. Before people started to spend more time on choosing Moderators, this worked out for those who naturally want to do many projects at once.
However, if you wait longer, the outcome isn’t necessarily a better one.
Last time I waited for 3 days I think and there weren’t many applications after 24 hours. I think a majority usually reacts within a certain timeframe, some may only notice the project after release.
I usually have the “many projects” label as well, even though people may define “many” differently in the first place. The most I had were 7 Mod projects, which isn’t much compared to some others, but it’s a lot if half of the community’s moderators have about 3 projects. I guess, it doesn’t matter that much whether someone has 3 or 4, but once you are over 5 it feels like you have 20 more.
Probably we all agree that numbers are not an indicator that defines determination. I could give examples for moderators with many projects who are doing well and examples for moderators who have 3 projects and neglect their job in my personal opinion. But a CM doesn’t know how the whole moderation thing is organized in the first place. When it took me an hour to do an episode’s precheck to figure out all new terms, formality levels and new characters, I felt like I did a lot. However, I sometimes wonder if this even has any effect on the way you’re judged by someone. Maybe it does, but sometimes I’m doubtful about it. However, we may all agree that this doesn’t really matter to a CM. They only have a profile page, an application and may think “oh, it looks good” or “oh, there’s nothing on it” or “why did you bother sending me two sentences”. However, you can’t judge the quality of translations from it.
One of my past rejections contained a sentence like “I chose XY because they have the least amount of projects, so they commit more time”. Unfortunately, this is rather wishful thinking (though I think it was not a bad choice in the mentioned case). I think it might be more important how involved someone is in the community and what they learned.
So, I’m even more concerned about people who translate alone. Maybe you can indeed state that they “are in theory rather able to guarantee a certain translation level”, but a lot of Single Translators don’t. They do it because they don’t have the courage or feel like it might be too demanding to set up a team. Maybe some feel pressured, maybe some enjoy “freedom” like this. Of course, in some languages it might be the case because there is no community, and you’re unable to trust fellow volunteers (which are good reasons), but in mediocre to large communities there might sometimes be less “convincing” reasons for this decision.
On the other hand, of course, there might be sometimes volunteers that translate too literally or even weirdly to some extent. Especially in demanding or “smaller” projects.
I’m not exactly against having many projects, I never was. However, I can understand that it’s annoying if you have 5 people providing a very similar quality, and then you’re rejected for someone who has 3 times more projects. Just like you may thing “I have many projects, but I do a good job and this person with 1 project doesn’t” (which is understandable) you may as well think “I have no projects, and they chose someone with 20 projects though they are not better in terms of quality”. This is some sort of dilemma I have no good solution for, but it’s the reason for many arguments. Sometimes this assumption in regard to quality might not be true, but they think it’s well-deserved.
What’s truly just? I have no answer to that question after considering all sorts of reasons and arguments provided.
As usual with things in life, there is no simple quantifiable solution. Because we are dealing with people. And people and their work can’t be summed up in a few numbers (of projects, contributions, etc). Those numbers are just starting guidelines.
Oopsie! Let me join in too.
I am somewhat taken aback, some of us, me included, still have some left questions when Viki “decided” to ghost us here at Discussions.
Now you come back with some simple questions, and we are supposed to jump on them? I am sorry, I will take my time answering.
How about the questions Viki is taking its time to answer? And yes, sorry for going off-topic.
I am at the point, where I don’t want to read “we are on it” anymore, when over the months not even the “we are on it” is mentioned.
So, is this something still in the making? Or did it “fall” from the desk?
What is your subtitling/segmenting setup?
Hey everyone, thanks for raising the discrepancy of the number of permitted channels for moderators across various FAQs. I have caught up on the recent discussions in this thread and I see very valid points being brought up, e.g. a movie vs. web drama vs. 50-ep period drama is vastly different.
The numbers must be calibrated, no doubt. Like some of you have understood, too, there is no magic number, and many factors must be considered prior.
With the official editor role being introduced earlier, the role of both the moderator and editor might have blurred and become unclear. When these are not defined, it would lead to haphazard calibration or uninformed decisions.
There are problems with how the number is being defined today. We need a lot of insights and this thread has been helpful. But I thought I’ll get more perspective from you as an experienced contributor. How do you think a fair limit would look like? With the addition of the editor role, in your opinion, is it expected of a moderator to be involved in edits?
Lastly, I hope to be able to convey that the team is building the community with you, and your input are actively considered. Many of you are frustrated because development or changes are slow to take place, especially on the hoarding problem front. We acknowledge this and want to break the cycle by carrying forward your sentiments to respective stakeholders in the rest of the organization.
We look forward to your constructive input, wherever relevant.
I think, and that is just my opinion, before Viki is trying to solve this problem on the long run, it would be good to match the two threads at the Help Center, even if for now it would mean to take the higher number at least this controversy would be off the table for the time being until Viki finally agrees on a fixed number for good.
I think this problem is different, if it is about the English editing or the other language editing. I can’t say how it is with En editors at the moment, but many other language moderators do not have editors, they are pretty rare, the editing is in the responsibility of the moderator, but I do not think the moderator will “switch hats” and add the editor’s role to themselves even if editing is done by her/him.
Well, well … Maybe the younger ones, or the ones new to Viki, however if you have been with Viki for a while, the frustration does not come about the pace of development, or not all, but the up and downs in communication. One time there is even video communication and then there is almost zero communication. It’s that inconsistent approach that is most demotivating to keep giving any feed back sometimes.
I might repeat myself years ago there was a planning map for volunteer issues, where you could look up if the problem was registered, if it was planned to be taken care of, when it was actively in the making and when it was solved. That was by far the best instrument in my opinion Viki ever had done, sometimes they even added when they needed feedback of users of special devices and yes, we gave a helping hand. This schedule table, or however I should call it, did one thing fairly well, it reduced the number of incoming requests and brought the right people together, if you could come up with something like that and it would become known and a reliable instrument, how great could this be, instead of copy and paste replies to numerous tickets or none at all to volunteers and keep them hanging on.
Especially this problem with the number of positions for moderators goes on for months, and we already have been told it is forwarded and in discussion … No, I won’t jump into this rabbit hole, I will just hope we will finally see the light of day.
P.S. There was a 2nd point we were asking about, it might not be a big thing to Viki organization, but still there was the silent change from Viki Volunteer Community to Viki Contributor Community. We won’t get a statement on that, or will we?
Expected hours of content in a given week could be a way.
For instance, you have right now a film (roughly 2 hours), a web drama (1/2 hour X 2 =1 hour), three normal Korean ones (2 hours per week each = 6 hours) and a long Chinese one (1,5 hours).
But that’s not to easy to implement, because there should be someone monitoring and doing the math.
If all of us worked on all sorts of content, it would be easy to even out. Give or take. But there are some of us who only like Chinese long dramas and others who never touch them.
What is sure in my opinion is that so-callled “library titles” should also be included. If you don’t count them, people will never get to finishing them.
You mean from Taiwan?
First of all I think it would make people refrain from touching those “ungrateful” long dramas if they were considered a “huge investment”. Often it takes “ages” to finish them since less, people would like to help out, they are very long and the editing is often rather slow. E.g. in case of Court Lady or New Horizon, my friend is working on them for at least 6 months. They’re half to 3/4 released for OL translation. At least in regard to our medium-sized community, I doubt that many would accept those if they expect a long time to invest while doing nothing, since there’s at most 1 episode per week released. Generally speaking, the releases differ a lot based on the editor, so I’d rather establish some sort of “time rule” for English editors. There’re teams that release 3-4 45min episodes per week and teams where the CE does nothing for 2 months while some CMs just ignore it. The rule in that regard is rather vague, claiming it should be done in a timely manner. However, over the past months, I’ve wasted lots of time discussing appropriate releases. I’d rather avoid these.
Nowadays, many moderators just avoid accepting projects from English teams they expect to be rather slow. I think it’s important to work on all projects at the same time and finish them accordingly. That might be rather difficult with 30 projects at once if you count in the editing. However, editing is not always the mod’s job. While I think a mod should be able to edit, at least the medium to large-sized communities often have separate editors.
Therefore, it’s rather impossible to really find an answer for this question that applies to all communities. Furthermore, people should rather be rewarded for accepting abandoned projects or long projects others avoid. On Viki it’s easiest to only do popular short dramas. You’re not encouraged to do something else unless you’re absolutely passionate about Chinese history dramas in the first place.
So I’d rather go for a contribution minimum (commit as much as XY per project per week after OL release, e.g. 1 episode or 4 parts or something). Furthermore, the audiences refrain from contacting us about translation issues etc. since the reports are rather hidden, or it’s inconvenient to report.
I would like to say something about the topic as well. I belong to the moderators who have many projects, but also use older projects to train newbies.
I had forwarded a suggestion to Viki some time ago on how to solve the problem of “hoarding” and having too many projects which cannot be completed in a timely manner.
I think a set number should just be a guideline, as I was also told by various Viki staff at the current values.
There are people who are overwhelmed with one project and they don’t finish it and others have the opportunity to take care of many projects and finish them all in a timely manner.
I had forwarded the following suggestion to Viki, which certainly still has room for revision and improvement.
My suggestion would be the following, but I don’t know if this is technically feasible, although in this time this should not be a problem.
There is no fixed number of projects (a possible guideline is helpful though). Everyone can take on as many projects as they can responsibly manage.
The system should give every CM in the channel the possibility to release the episodes for the other languages.
Not just an e-mail or something like that, but this has to be stored properly in the system. In addition, the moderators could be informed about this entry immediately, that the translation can be started.
Because there is a starting point in the system, when an episode can be translated, it is also possible to record the processing according to a traffic light principle.
An episode must be translated within a given time. Here one should not orient on the fast languages, because most languages do not finish within one day. The German teams have between 5-10 days, depending on the drama, but languages with less subber would not make it either. Maybe 2 weeks are realistic? If the translation is done in the given time, there is a green signal for the episode, if you get into a transition period there is a yellow signal and if you don’t work on the episode, then a red signal. These signals are either only visible to Viki Staff and they know when to intervene or everyone can see it. There is then a fixed guideline that people with for example 5 red signals are not allowed to take any further task until the episodes have been translated. And there is an automatic information to the CM’s with the hint that they have to take care or maybe look for another moderator to support.
This is all just a rough idea, but it could be reasonably expanded and planned.
Strictly my point of view.
The word limit should not exist in a community based on volunteerism. The quality of those who are part of the community, yes, here there must be monitoring and provision of the necessary tools to eliminate those who do not understand that they must be responsible.
At the risk of repeating myself and based on the situation in my community, a limit on the number of projects would be to the disadvantage of those who are waiting for the projects to be translated, but also those who have the time to be involved even 2-3 times more than the rest. However, I agree that it is a big problem when a volunteer has 30-40-50 etc. projects and keeps applying for others (these are real situations in my community). I think the current way, reporting to Viki, is a very good one, but it has one big shortcoming: extremely long response time. It takes forever for Viki to respond; sometimes they don’t even respond at all, with tickets remaining open for months with absolutely no reply.
In the hope of considering not applying a limit, I think an automatically generated system summary on each volunteer’s profile would be welcome. This would be of great help to channel managers and should contain:
- total number of lines as subtitler/editor/moderator - for each role;
- the number of projects per role and divided by their status, active or inactive, as well as other important details regarding the number of episodes, the length of an episode, the size of the team, the pace of work - both for the English team and for the other languages (of course, the criteria for classifying a project as active or inactive should be established);
- time spent on Viki, divided into several important categories (last 14 days, last month, last 3 months, 6 months, 1 year - with the number of contributions for each period).
In the case of my community, yes, the moderator will also have to do the editing. Why? Because most are just subtitlers and those who are only willing to edit are almost non-existent. Also, there are very few who would have the skills to edit, and most want to be moderators on that project as well.
Personally, I don’t adhere in any way to railing against those who have many projects and limiting their activity - basically, Viki will have to say: “Sorry, we know you’re willing to get as involved as you can, but we want to limit your activity.” (the issue of the number of projects arises in the above situation). The situation of co-moderators should also be discussed - while for some this strictly means a better chance of getting a project, from my own experience I can tell you that there are other advantages that can only be beneficial and to the advantage of those waiting for our translations - it is a very important aspect when it comes to the number of projects and should be highlighted on the profile in as accessible a way as possible.
It would be useful for everyone to talk about how to identify the necessary tools to combat the irresponsible and to display on our profile much more details about our work (I did this, taking advantage of the ‘about me’ section), rather than setting mass limitations and restrictions. Personally, I’m not bothered if someone has several projects, unless that volunteer has other problems (poor translation quality, translates alone or in a small group, has over 30 projects and keeps applying for others, etc). I have seen situations where volunteers with far fewer projects, provided much poorer quality than a volunteer with more projects. So it pretty much rules out the idea that those with fewer projects do a better job.
Therefore, as can be deduced from my point of view presented here, there is one variable that rules out limiting the number of projects in any way, and that is the situation of each individual community. If for a certain community this would be a solution, for another it might mean a harmful thing.
We need to encourage activity, not discourage it.
I have a few questions if anyone would be so kind: What does a Mod do? Would one need to know Korean? Also, could a Mod set ground rules that others would be compelled to follow, you know, in the sole interest of the Community?
All this talk about subs and channels, but the word Community never comes up. That should be a requirement.
That’s true. The recent report is open for 9 days and others (about obvious plagiarism, Translator usage) from a known offender took a month or something. In fact, it was only fast when I reported someone subbing “.” only.
The amount of projects holds no information unless they were all dropped unfinished. There are people with 1-2 projects doing near to nothing, but they get the projects due to a small amount of projects in general. There’s people with more projects who do a lot more as well. The project limitation debate leads to pointless reports. At the same time, there are people focussed on certain genres: Like BL or Korean histories. Of course, if you do one type of genre, it’s easier to get most of the projects in said genre - and the job done isn’t necessarily a better or worse one (but a CM won’t be able to determine that, of course).
Generally, no one should be blamed for accepting what they like, I’m just afraid that there are some genres with fewer fans that would moderate those.
Recently, there are as well some (inexperienced) single translators emerging who don’t look for a team since they have no experience with teams, dislike building them or just prefer doing it on their own. Sometimes this works out, but not necessarily. Certainly, a project could be left untranslated. But then there’s the risk that it either never receives a translation or only half a translation, or even a bad translation. Unfortunately, there won’t be a good solution here, I guess.
Mods don’t have to know Korean. For GEs(the last/second-to-last English editors), it totally depends on the CM - some make them mods while others just give them the English Editor role.
Not sure what you mean about the community thing, but one person can’t impose any rules on the community - it’s too big and vast and things don’t suit everybody. The OL Moderator and CM are usually the ones who set the rules for the team to follow. The Chief English Moderator may set exclusive rules for the English Team, since no OL team can work before the episodes are released in English, and most OL translators translate from English to their own language. That’s why we have three ranks of editors - a mistake in English carries on to all the other language teams.
In that case, I would rather count the segments than the hours. A 2-hour action movie, full of action, but usually limited in the amount of dialogue, is less work than a 90-minute episode of a reality show with non-stop dialogue and text on screen.
Furthermore, the difficulty level should be taken into consideration, as well as the quality of potential presubs.
I second that.
There is no one-size-fits-all solution here, and the reasons for potential problems are beyond what basic rules could prevent. We have people here from all over the world, of different ages, different backgrounds, and with different expectations. Being a moderator for a rare language is a totally different experience than being a moderator for a popular language.
So we might end up working with people without being aware of their exact needs or expectations. We also may come across people who will actively discourage us, just because they don’t know or understand our side of the story. Misunderstandings and working with the wrong people pose a far greater risk toward the finishing of a project in a “timely manner” than the amount of projects ever could.
Basic rules won’t change this. Part of it is just a matter of experience and knowing the pitfalls the second time around. Apart from that, good agreements with each CM, based on the situation for that particular show and that particular team, are key.
In the smaller languages, the moderator may fulfill all roles, including that of subber, while for the bigger languages, a moderator might have the option to do nothing but recruiting and coordinating the team. English editors are still often added as moderator and for the CE this is a must, given the fact that an editor cannot even send out a message to the team with the message form.
And then there are also segmenters (and not always just the CS) who are added as moderator.
So it’s hard to tell someone’s exact role just by looking at their profile.
We also cannot possibly check the amount of time and energy a volunteer may have to work on a project, nor could we know whatever unexpected situation may occur in their life in the meantime. So the limit of projects should never be more than a suggestion that the CM has to consider in an attempt to make a wise decision. And it should certainly not be the only thing they take into consideration. The quality of someone’s work is far more important.
Since the entire website is solely based on volunteering, that should be very first thing you ask someone: “How much time do you actually have? I see, only 2 hours/day, then No, I’m not going to let you work on 9 channels at once.”
Anyway, this feels like a free-for-all type of situation to me. With no one in charge of all the channels, all the volunteers, all the work, you can expect this sort of “little corruption” as I like to call it to rear its ugly head.
It is what it is. But I think all the responsible adults here need to reconsider whether or not it’s worth investing your precious time in this flawed system.
Actually, nowadays the Project Finder has a form that people who apply through Project Finder need to fill in and there is a question about the available time there. But of course, we have no way to check the answer and even the volunteer him-/herself cannot always give an accurate estimation of that.