It is Time To Make A Decision, Drivetribe!
Unfavorable (Adult) Content - Not in Our Face, Please!
I hate writing, but I decided to stay home and not go to a car show because I love the idea of Drivetribe. This is written with the purpose of trying to convey the Drivetribe public’s point of view per what’s been seen from everyone’s discussions on slack and live chat. I even discuss why I believe Drivetribe responds the way they do.
Just so everyone knows, I also decided to close off the ability for the Drivetribe public to post on Small Tribes Rule. This is to protect new members from seeing what I would like to call unfavorable content. No incident has occurred here yet, because I am taking action before something does happen. However, there was one incident elsewhere that ended up with the threatening of physical violence. Hence, instead of being reactionary and waiting for something bad to happen with no real control or action within STR, I decided to block the ability for others to post - in protest.
Some are leaving Drivetribe or threatening to do so, and for the rest that choose to stay you may soon be over run – even big tribes. I am going to broaden this topic to a wider base audience. I have what I feel are simple solutions to many of Drivetribe’s controversial problems at the end. Just remember, your viewpoint is not the only one. And neither is mine.
Why are people in an uproar?
It is because there are some tribes posting adult content (one form of unfavorable content) in their tribes. Some particular ones post more than others. A few have gotten popular, by means that may or may not be ethically correct, but the end result is the same. This content has been filtering into everyone’s news feed, and getting the posters to the top of Most Influential. It is an endless cycle that doesn’t break, causing the news feeds to be filled with it and not cars. If you block a tribe and they make a new tribe, your feed is filled again. This maybe great for those tribes and for people that love to see that content, but what about the rest that are looking for --- I don’t know – CARS? Consider this - What about that parent that signs on with their child and see nothing but unfavorable content?
It should be noted this has been a growing concern amongst many in the community. Here is one example going all the way back to right after launch: post from 7 months ago.
The question remains - Why is this on Drivetribe, and why is it even allowed in the first place? From what I understand, as we were told, the amount of staff involved to police and enforce all of this checking would be astronomical. There is also some sort of legal reasoning behind it that they have to be hands-on on all of it or none of it. This leaves it to the users to report it. Unfortunately, many feel that not enough has been done in a response. We don’t want adult content in our face. Blocking or muting a tribe is apparently, and proven, not enough. How do you access this feature on the desktop/browser? There might be a way I don’t know how.
I have some suggestions below and it may not be what everyone wants, but I think it may be enough to lead us to where we want to be. I am fully aware I am risking being hated by the community and the staff at Drivetribe. But I have had enough of hearing about it from all sides. Bottom-line, I just want to read about CARS and look at them! Isn’t that what Drivetribe is supposed to be about?
How can you help?
You can repost this to your tribe. You can take action like others. You can comment and tag people. Maybe tag the big 3! If you have posted or made a post put a link to it in the comments. Use this STR article as the hub!
Recently, you may have seen a post that Kids In Karts is planning to sign off and we all will miss him if he goes. Even if you don’t know Ben he has fought for each and every one of you one way or another behind closed doors.
I worked with him and a few others (I will update their names, if they want me to – you know who you all are) to try and build a better way for the small guys with decent content, but this issue will affect the big guys, eventually.
Call to Action
There are a few other issues to address first.
The biggest problem and benefit of Drivetribe has been their ability to change with community needs. On this topic though, only the tribe mute button has been implemented, yet the problem has been growing. A discussion was started with NSFW (short for Not Suitable For Work – meaning any content you wouldn’t want your boss to see you looking at), but as you can see it has been a month since the post:
The second problem is the lack of communication. It seems Drivetribe reaches out to talk to the community to get our ideas & suggestions, but then we don’t always hear what happens to them or get feedback. Did things get shelved and forgotten, or are they making decisions - we don’t know. We do understand they are busy, but more communication with updates would maybe ease some of the tension on both sides.
The third problem is I don’t believe NSFW is the total answer to the issue and doesn’t reach the needs of everyone in the community. Never mind that it hasn’t been implemented yet. There is no way to draw a line of what is acceptable and not unless through a majority (vote). If you want the majority to rule then this line has to be able to move as the population of Drivetribe may change overtime. This is why I am against this.
So let’s look at all sides in general terms because what one person may think is bad content, another may not.
There are 3 parts: the people that want the unfavorable content, the people that don’t want the unfavorable content, and Drivetribe that wants the traffic. All three are very important for the survival of our community and we can’t address one or two without consequences. Or can we? But first more issues… Why, because these are all tied together.
Drivetribe states you can report someone for bad content. But if you do, nothing really seems to happen. The Most Influential, Trending, Niche etc. don’t seem to work that well either in many people’s view.
So, is Drivetribe a social media site or a place for specific content? This is where Drivetribe is ignoring the question.
If you want to be a content driven site then you need to clamp down on everything. Pay a lawyer and get new TOS up and implement the change. Notify people the change is coming and tell people on a regular basis what is happening, going to happen and may happen. Of course, you can’t tell everyone everything, but if you want us to help, you have to help us. Lock the stuff up and basically start over admitting you messed up opening the doors too fast, to too many. I think this is a bad idea and would probably kill Drivetribe.
My proposed solution is:
If you want to be a social media site then you need to put in the tools for the user to have more control. This seems to be what you want, but you have ignored the ability of the user to view what they want. Most Social Media gives you the ability to block a person (this usually includes their content posts and everything about them). There is unfavorable content on FB and other social media sites. But if you choose not to see it you can block it and for the most part it works. There will always be the one that tests the limits. This will also help the staff concentrate on things like code instead of enforcing and policing. This also helps traffic because the unfavorable content is still there for the people who want to see it. It keeps users happy seeing what they want and in the future advertisers too. The user will have the ability to instantly make their environment more pleasurable, if they choose to.
Now the harder parts of the solution ... The front-page and discover sections. It is a mess and has been since the start of it. I am going to go in order from left to right on the page if you click the D_TRB square at the top left and then after “Tribes” just left of your user name at the top.
“Tribes Recommended for you”: The same 6 tribes have been recommended for as long as I can recall. For me it is useless - I say get rid of it or change how it works.
“Popular Posts”: This actually seems to work well, yet I always seem to miss it. Make this stand out, or allow more than 3 posts to be featured, possibly using some of the Recommended Tribes space.
“Most Influential”: Well this is just a joke and should be taken out. It was a GREAT idea, but too many people cheat the system. Also Clarkson, May and Hammond should have a place on the front page that is separate from the others and has a quick link to their last post. This doesn’t need to be huge, but maybe along the top of the whole strip, or something to that effect. The community will find them. If you have them included in Most Influential and they are not in it then it looks sad, pathetic even, in my opinion.
Tribes Section – Your Tribes: OK.
Discover Section: These don’t seem to update or update enough. If a tribe is shown in one section maybe it shouldn’t be shown in another section. If you “blocked” someone his or her tribes shouldn’t show up in your list. The ability to mute a tribe on desktop is not available or I couldn’t find it. Blocking a person should mute all their tribes automatically.
People/Tribes that have been blocked a lot should have their account reviewed, and if NSFW is implemented those people should be put on the block list so new users don’t see their content in their face when they sign on as a new user.
These all need to be addressed because they contribute to the exposure of unfavorable content in view of people who don’t want it. There will be an increase of good, long standing members leaving if it continues. Down the road, advertisers/investors may want to avoid this site. Without any changes to the current issue of (adult) unfavorable content, I fear Drivetribe will be called such names as Porntribe or Sexdrive.
Please share, repost, comment and take action. We need something to effect change one way or another! As a community, we can agree and disagree, but we must be able to co-exist.