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5-24-2010 @ 2:39PM
One thing that struck me was who is paying for the chat server and who has admin rights to it. I agree that, at this time, shutting it down is tantamount to breaking up your guild. But the fact that it exists is troubling to me. I run the Vent server and I have admin rights to it. I've sent up a number of rooms where people can go including a few that are password protected. Last year, when my guild went through a very rocky patch, I noticed some people going to one particular room. When asked if there was something wrong, they said, "No, they just wanted to talk with their friends and not in the lobby." While they weren't doing anything subversive, their unwillingness to join in general conversation isolated them and made them seem like an exclusive group. Eventually, they would log onto Vent and immediately go into what was turning into "their" chat channel. Other people felt unwelcome in that channel even if they were running with this group. I finally told them I was going to have to shut it down because it was dividing the guild. They decided they wanted something different than what we offered and left. The only private chat rooms my Vent server has are one for officers and one for 18 and older chat. Everyone knows this and this cuts down on "private" chats. I think the key is to make sure everyone in the guild knows they can come to you about anything, whether it's your leadership or someone's bad play or ideas they have for raids, and you'll listen to them and consider what they say. It seems to me you have done a great job of being sensitive to concerns and that's made you a better guild. If you make it clear your ear is always open to guild members those people with an axe to grind won't find too many interested in listening to them and there's no reason to be chatting in a private chat room.
5-24-2010 @ 2:57PM
The channel they're talking about isn't a room in a Vent server. They're talking about private chat channels created within the WoW client.
5-24-2010 @ 4:23PM
When I created my vent server, I've excluded personal private channels to avoid this very issue of clique-ishness. It's worked wonderfully well, and I take pride in knowing I've helped cultivate an atmosphere where everyone would be welcome in all channels. You can peek at our vent channel setup on latecrew.net
5-24-2010 @ 4:29PM
@Docrev. I completely missed that it was about private chat channels using the in-game client. My ultimate point about a guild leader being open to all comments still stands. If the GL indicates they will listen to someone, even if it is criticism about them, there is no need of a private channel. @Freedom. Since I control who is allowed to set up chat channels in Vent, there are no private channels save for the one for officers and the one for 18-years old an up. Other than when we really are dealing with guild business, we rarely use the officer channel. If people want to talk to me privately, I will take them there. Since that one group left, we've not had a problem with people talking privately to the exclusion of others. I won't say that people don't gripe and complain, it's a human quality. But I hope everyone feels that they can come to me with an issue, even if it's "You suck" and know they will be heard.
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