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NOTE: It was surprisingly a struggle for me to respond to Mak’s blogs (the improvement related ones), because even though I wanted to say something, I was having trouble coming up with what to say and how to say it. I know blogs like this tend to get bashed, and it would suck if it resulted in more drama, especially so close to the holidays. Nevertheless, I’m just trying to be honest. Is there a point where honesty can turn into harshness? Perhaps, but that wasn’t my intention. Special thanks to Churchpants (some kind of freaky genius) whose ideas helped formulate my opinion and indirectly served as inspiration for this blog. ;) Alright, I’m going to stop blabbing and get to my point. Now, without further 23 skidoo, my response to Mak’s blog.
Let me start by saying that I don’t hate the wiki, or anyone in it; that’s what made this so difficult. Yet, it would be a lie to say that we don’t have any issues, because we clearly do. The thing is, it wasn’t always this way.
When I first joined, the wiki was a wonderful, welcoming, colorful, creative, friendly environment, where we all bounced ideas off of each other and got into stimulating debates and discussions. Everyone was automatically welcomed and accepted. Being a socially awkward, unpopular writer, this place was like heaven for me, and I was instantly attracted and soon addicted to it. It wasn’t long before everyone here made me feel right at home, because you guys are amazing like that. ;D But yadda, yadda; you’ve heard all of this cheesy chiz from me before. (It’s true chiz, but it’s cheesy. :P) My point is, though we had our occasional disagreements, we all agreed that we loved iCarly and that made us a family.
However, nowadays, I feel like we are less of a family and more of…a high school.
Allow me to explain; the admins have become something like a student council, the chat is like a local hangout, we even have our very own awesome newspaper; but all this comes with a consequence. While popularity was always present to a certain degree, I feel like it’s a much more prominent aspect of the wiki now. Before chat came along, we all hung out together on the pages, and no one was ignored. Whenever someone commented, everyone almost automatically replied, no matter who they were. Ever since chat was added, certain people became closer to certain people and as a result, unofficial “cliques” were formed. This ultimately created a notion that you’re nobody unless you’re somebody around here. Newbies, in particular, always seem to be pushed to the side for more “popular” people; especially on chat, where everyone seems to be greeted except for them. All this makes for a more competitive environment for the users. In addition, the chat has shifted our focus from the actual show and made it more about…well, us.
(This next part is more of a rant, and if you’re xx, AJ, SLH or Slappy, you already sat through this and can skip this portion.)
When I first joined, the admins mainly consisted of grown men, and they were associated with boring, serious business, involving editing and cleaning up the wiki and keeping it safe and free of trolls. Most people thought nothing of being an admin and didn’t really care about being one. However, in recent months, the idea of being an admin has become glorified and glamorized; making it seem like it was just like being a normal user, but with a better title and a higher status, even though it is a job that needs to be taken seriously. On the other hand, I feel like regular users are severely underrated, underestimated and underappreciated. So many users do amazing things every day that go unnoticed. We all deserve to be praised and recognized for our achievements. I believe we all play an important role in the wiki, and being an admin is just one of those roles. We all have something to contribute. ;)
Lastly, going back to my high school metaphor, I'd like to address something that we have all become terribly familiar with and all too aware of....the DRAMA! This is something that has affected nearly everyone I'm close to on this wiki. Now, I can tell you right about when I started to see things go downhill, and I can tell you about several instances where tensions were high and drama broke out, but I, for the life of me, cannot put my finger on what caused this drama wave, in the first place; why this happened and how it started. Maybe after the Katydidit incident, we all became more paranoid of eachother. Perhaps we have become too close through chat and we started rubbing each other the wrong way. Either way, I think we can all agree that the drama has exposed an ugly, nasty side of all of us, and dare I say it, made us all a bit more...catty. I'm not saying that there weren't occasional complaints and that no one had issues before this, because I know for a fact that this isn't true, but things just seemed more peaceful back then, and the stress that the users were going through was far less evident. It was a completely different atmosphere from the way it is, today. Don't blame the admins, because they are doing the best they can to keep things in order. However, to see the way it has divided us in the past is truly sad and painful to watch.
All I know is that we need to find a way to bring us all back together as a family, where all ideas and opinions are listened to and respected. I simply want everyone who comes here to get the same warm welcome that I did when I first joined. :)
Now, this blog is obviously biased because I'm basing it off my own personal experience here, which is why I encourage you to talk about your own personal experience here in the comments, and how being here has affected you. I'm expecting some controversy coming out of this, but if you're going to hate on anyone for it, hate on me, because even though I was influenced by other people's opinions, this blog was made completely at my own discretion.