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  • Crappy administrators

    The gripe for today is administrators who don't respond to email questions. I was just told of someone who was thinking of joining a Y haplogroup project and asked the admin a question that was not posted anywhere on the site. The administrator replied back only with a form letter advert inviting the person to join the project. So far the biggest complaints i've gotten from people is about administrators of Y haplogroup projects, who seem to be the worst offenders.

    What if ftda had a user rating system for adminstrators like is done for uber, 3rd party amazon merchants, and so on? If you're crappy, the "world" should know - and the inverse true as well of course. i'll put it in suggestion thread maybe.

  • #2
    rating system?

    How about letting project members vote on how good the administrator is overall on a 1 - 5 scale? This would help prospective members know if they want to join or not and could also be used when reviewing new applications to be an administrator on another project. If one were doing it even more thoroughly, one should review each project once a year along with ratings and give warnings, or worse, when needed. Alot of work, but his is no longer child's play and someone has to be minding the store.

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    • #3
      Volunteers

      You DO realize that the admins are unpaid volunteers, not employees of FTDNA right? They take a lot of kicking around as it is when most do the best they can with the tools and systems that exist.

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      • #4
        Volunteer admins

        The project admins are unpaid volunteers doing this in their spare time because it is something they believe in.

        It gets rough out there sometimes trying to make everyone happy when answers aren't always available to admins either. Delayed results, confused participants, unclear processes, account or order errors, buttons that don't work like they should, test results that are not as expected, the list goes on... It's not always clear what someone is asking or what they think the admin can do to assist.

        I've come across a few admins who were less helpful than others, but to "rank" them? Based on what measure? Without the admins who have a passion for what they do, the project itself might just be left hanging in limbo or even go away. Not everyone is blessed with a friendly or easy going online persona. That does not make them ineffective.

        If there's a real gripe about a specific project or admin, then it should be dealt with. Please don't lump everyone into one pot or create additional layers of red tape when FTDNA seems to be struggling with the basics of their business already.

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        • #5
          Volunteer to help. Some projects are huge (and growing).

          W.

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          • #6
            It might be useful to be able to identify admins who don't respond at all (because that could indicate a project that might need a new admin), but I don't think it would be useful to rank them on the quality of their response - for all the reasons already given.

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            • #7
              Are you an admin yourself Penguin? Or perhaps planning to volunteer to help out on one of the projects that you feel is not living up to expectations? If not, then I think you have little grounds to complain unless an admin has done something in direct contravention of the guidelines.

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              • #8
                Project Administrators

                One of my projects was established long before I joined, and has several hundred members but only one administrator. The administrator has taken on more projects, and refuses the assistance of any co-administrators. They are now dealing with several thousand participants. I believe they have met the requirements for their personal quests, have lost their objectivity, have assumed a position of understanding DNA with out the assistance of others, and have lost the ability to collaborate effectively. I wish FTDNA could understand the impact of ineffective administrators. A bad administrator can suck the fun right out of genetic genealogy.

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                • #9
                  Why not start your own project?

                  I understand FTDNA to provide the hosting space for many projects, but I cannot think of a reason that would preclude anyone from starting their own project elsewhere? It's (I think) much like documenting a family tree: one can use ancestry to host your tree, track it on your local PC, draw it on parchment, throw it in the street, whatever! I see the point about inactive projects needing to be understood as such, as one would hate to start a new project when there was a solid extant alternative.

                  I've done a ton of charity work throughout my life and I find volunteering to help most people markedly unrewarding as they always feel the one doing the giving hasn't done quite enough for them. As my Grandmother used to say, some people are so rude that they "can't even be bothered to tell me to go to h*ll."

                  Rating the performance of someone giving you a handout is tacky.

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                  • #10
                    Basic Contract Law

                    Administrators don't owe you anything. You have no agreement. A legal contract means mutual consideration (generally money) where one party pays for something and the other gets something, be it a product or service. You aren't paying for anything so you aren't entitled to anything.

                    What is the worst that happens... you join and it's not for you? You could always say that you don't think you are getting your money's worth and demand a full refund of your free, every imaginary penny of it.

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                    • #11
                      There appear to be several threads addressing this issue. Perhaps time for a moderator to step in and consolidate or close some.

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                      • #12
                        What's wrong with volunteers getting rated? who said a rating system is just for paid people? are you afraid your ratings will not be so good? Yes, i administer a project. yes, everyone is trying hard- some people are good at it and some people are not. what's wrong with keeping those who are good at it and warning or replacing those who are not (for whatever reason) if there are other willing volunteers? Being a volunteer is not an excuse for poor performance, nor should "effort" be used as the standard of success. Volunteers will be compared to other volunteers- level playing field. Is keeping a volunteer who is not doing well like social promotion for adults?

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by penguin View Post
                          warning or replacing those who are not (for whatever reason) if there are other willing volunteers?
                          Good luck with that.

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                          • #14
                            Standards

                            What should be the standards and expectations for administrators? The administrator for my surname project sounded excited about my interest in testing and arranged for one test to be paid through the project general fund (I donated to the fund). I haven't heard anything since and haven't expected to. As yet there are no results to talk about anyways.

                            Would somebody else be upset at this non-communication? Would somebody else be expecting their administrator to be burning up the internet complaining about how long results take? A rating depends on the level of attention and service expected. With no standards, it's simply up to the individual what they think the administrator should be doing for them.

                            I will likely join other projects once I have enough information to go on. What should the role be for these others once that happens? Should it be different for a surname project than a haplogroup project or a geographic project? These are issues I find with just throwing out the concept "rating". There's no context.

                            And no ... I am not an administrator ...
                            Last edited by MikeP; 26 January 2015, 11:40 AM. Reason: addition

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                            • #15
                              Deal with the issue

                              What's wrong with dealing with the few problems there are as they arise rather than creating more red tape for everyone? It's just not that simple.

                              Make too many hoops to jump through and people will simply leave... no matter how passionate or effective they are.

                              A rating system if not carefully considered and implemented (and sorry, but I don't have a lot of faith it would be) could introduce competition and animosity into the community that is not there now. It could even negatively impact cooperation between related projects.

                              So, if some admin is not responding, not helping, Not updating the data, violating some rule, hiding results behind paywalls, etc... wouldn't it be better to have a sound process for addressing those specific deficits?

                              If reporting such failures to FTDNA isn't getting any resolution, then maybe that's the step that needs to be fixed.

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