Got a little bit of news about an update that Wikia put into effect about a week ago. The new style Forums and Message Walls share a lot of functionality. Now that I think about it, Article Comments do, too, but they are not included in the update.
One of the problems those have had is that pretty much anyone could interfere or muck about with messages left by other people. Typically, it was someone removing a message that another person left, either because they didn't like that message, or it was a vandal trying to remove a report about the problems they were causing. Occasionally, removing a message was done legitimately, such as one person removing vandalism or profanity by other user.
New topics in the Forums and new messages to people in the Message Walls are called threads. The change Wikia put into place is that users now can only remove and restore threads and replies they posted. They can't do either to what other people post.
Admins still have full control to do maintenance, but Wikia added a new level of user called a Moderator that can do some of the maintenance. We don't have the new Forums here yet, but having some Moderators that can clean up problems on our Message Walls would help so that people don't always have to get an administrator involved if they see a problem.
An easy way of doing this would be to grant everyone that has Rollback rights Moderator rights. It's the same concept: they're trusted to mark that they've reviewed an edit on a regular article and didn't find any problems (or they did and they fixed them) and their own edits are automatically counted as trustworthy. We would be trusting them to exercise good judgment with Message Wall messages.
Starting next issue, we will have some new reviews. We've taken a break from doing episode reviews. Now it's time to bring them back.
First up will be I Know That Voice. I'm in a class for work right now. When I was scheduled for this, I thought, "Great. There's a little bit of reading and questions to be done each night, but otherwise, I'll have time away from my normal routine. I'll get I Know That Voice, be able to watch it undisturbed and have a great review for the newsletter."
Well, I will, but it will be next issue. I didn't factor in having to be in a hotel room where every time the compressor in the heater kicks in, the rumble overpowers the audio, which isn't very loud to begin with on the built-in speakers of the laptop. Or the lowest speed of the heater fan being fairly loud. I can't really hear what's being said, and since this is a documentary that is mostly talking, I've had to give up until I can get back home.
This documentary is a great look into what it takes to be a voice actor and I want to adjust my review so it can be put on a few different wikis, customized for those wikis. I need to be able to concentrate in order to do this right and I can't do it where I'm currently at.
After that, I may branch off into song reviews. While driving a few days ago, I found myself singing songs from both Phineas and Ferb and My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic. This is what can happen when the radio gets stolen out of your truck and you haven't gotten around to replacing it. Luckily I didn't have any passengers or else I'm certain they would have broke the door trying to get away from my off-key singing. And I gotta admit that "Find the Music in You" can be one of the most circular songs I've heard in a long time that is difficult to break out of and stop singing.
Both series have their share of songs which convey something fun or positive. But with more songs than episodes, there are many themes to explore in Phineas and Ferb. If someone else is willing to pick up episode reviews again, maybe we can run one of each in each issue.
Coming in two weeks:
Hands On With The New Merchandise: I Know That Voice