More communication was promised and then we got nothing.

How can we rely on Wayfarer team to keep their word?

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  • MargariteDVille-INGMargariteDVille-ING Posts: 2,662 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Agreed! Here's are some communication-related promises Niantic has made.

    August 2022

    We’ll post the results in the community on August 30, 2022 and add it to the existing Criteria page as well. 

    April 2022

    7. Communication Improvement.

    We feel you on this. We see a great conflation of feedback to Wayfarer between followers of Niantic (as a company), Pokémon GO, Ingress and Wayfarer communities; for example, we receive a lot of feedback and community expects us to respond to questions around gameboard decisions, or game items, or gameplay design but that is not for Wayfarer team to fix or respond to. Please let your fellow community members know that there are actually different teams with specific communication goals across games, Wayfarer, and the Niantic company communication channels. We definitely try to align ourselves across our general outreach strategies where possible, but we (Wayfarer) don’t call the final shots on anything other than our official Wayfarer channels. We've been trying to increase our presence and differentiate our identity as a specific product/program/team, to reduce the conflation and confusion. Our twitter account is a specific response and strategy toward doing so. It’s our way of differentiating ourselves. We also have more IRL engagements lined up that we’re super excited about (announcement coming soon). On cut and paste responses, while we do our best to not do so, the reality is that it’s common practice across all companies that have millions of users across multiple products. You’ll always see some level of similar responses. If we added a personal flare or specific details to each response, you’ll start to see a massively slower response rate. If, however, you feel like our Twitter or Community Forum have too much cut and paste responses please share so we can make improvements. 

    Dec 2021

    Q2. Centralized Criteria Please - Can we please get a centralized repository of feedback, clarifications, and overall criteria judgements, so that researching eligibility is easier for everyone?

    A2: Thanks for asking this. This topic is one that I hope to tackle in the new year. I myself have been looking and thinking about better ways of communicating this on the Wayfarer website but also in the Wayfarer Community. For the main central repository, that will be in the Wayfarer review portal, under the tab called Criteria. As we add, change, remove, etc it’ll be updated and also communicated in the community. There’s definitely some work to be done to make it all easier for everyone. When it comes to the Wayfarer Community, I’ve thought of ways of reconfiguring the Community Forum so that feedback, clarifications, etc. have a respective place to live but also be visible and easy to find. We will continue to flesh this out and this will be a part of our next year's work.

    Q4: What is being done about existing nominators/reviewers not keeping up with criteria? - How is Niantic trying to find a way for existing nominators and reviewers to actually look at and follow criteria instead of these popular but now ineligible wayspots?

    A4: This is something that we’ve also been thinking about and will continue to work on. I’m excited to put my educator hat on and think critically about better ways of creating opportunities for Explorers (new and experienced) to touch up on their knowledge of the criteria. One way you’ve seen this is with the new onboarding flow, rejection reasons in the emails, etc. 

    Sept 2021 AMA

    13 Q. What is being done to address the number of low-quality Wayspots and Wayspots that do not meet the acceptance criteria (for both old and newly approved ones)?

    13 A. Along the same lines as the other questions and what’s been shared in the community, we are looking at improving the onboarding process which we hope will improve the quality of each nomination. (rest of answer truncated)

    Nov 2020

    Q: How are you surfacing the revised criteria for Explorers who aren’t as active in the forum? 

    A: We’re working on a number of initiatives aimed at clarifying the new criteria, including the second part of this AMA, linking the criteria directly in the Wayfarer interface and adding contextual help to make sure information gets to reviewers when and where they need it. The idea of proactively notifying Explorers that the criteria has been relaunched is a good idea as well and is something that we’re working on currently.

    July 2020 AMA

    Has the wayfarer team ever considered a "submitter's test" or other ways to help educate new submitters?

    We are always working on initiatives to monitor submitter quality and take proactive action on low quality nominations. The quality of the Wayspots are one of our top concerns at all times. We are currently working on a backend system to improve how submitter quality is assessed and possibly even add benefits to Wayfarers who consistently submit high quality nominations, and punishments to those who don’t. For now, the best option to address low quality nominations is to use the one-star option to reject and report low quality nominations. For reporting bad edits, use the form available in the Help Center to report these cases. Reported nominations are reviewed by the Wayfarer team and the submitters may receive a warning or a suspension based on the severity of the offense.

    June/July 2019

    Q118: while I always find most if not all NIA developers and community communicators friendly and helpful, sometimes things didn't go so well. Do you feel it has something to you're understaffed, and does it limit your potential to fully deploy ideas and features?

    A118: Ingress players are not shy about sharing their opinions. I don’t think you need to directly communicate with a Niantic employee to ensure your position is heard. Even if we don’t comment on everything, we read the majority of the posts on the forums, Reddit, and social media.

    Our Community Managers are also human beings. They are going to have good days and they are going to have bad days. Ingress players are also human beings and are very passionate about Ingress. As a result, most of the feedback our Community Managers receive on a daily basis comes from a well intentioned place. But the feedback is often more negative in tone then positive. All of the Community Managers are also players. So they understand the frustrations Agents experience -- they experience it too.

    Communication is a tricky thing that can be further complicated by people using a common language that is not either person’s native language (usually English). So, it doesn’t surprise me that things don't always go well. To expect that it would is just not reasonable. I don’t think things not going well is a common experience. I also don’t think players or community managers generally express themselves with the intention to hurt or offend the other person.

    Also, where things tend to break down is when people come to a conversation with predetermined expectations of an output or result. That also isn’t reasonable. Provide constructive feedback. But don’t expect that every time you do, that change will occur as a result or a specific set of outcomes will happen. We all want the same thing and that is to make Ingress better. Keeping that in mind is important to successful communication. I don’t think the level of staffing is an issue for what we are trying.

    Dec 13, 2019 Blog

    We know it’s important to equip Wayfinders with real-time clarifications and empower conversations on what is and is not a high-quality Wayspot. We will be focusing on consolidating this information, making it more universally accessible, and easier to digest.

    August 2019 

    Q56: Is there any chance the OPR stats can be updated with what we had agreements/disagreements on? maybe add in what we helped approve/deny to.

    A56: At this time there are no plans to do this but the OPR team said they will look at doing something around this idea.

    March 2019

    Q8: Will there be a game designer doing an AMA or a longer post explaining the design visions and ideas behind some changes in Ingress and also the prime client?

    A8: We don’t have one specifically planned. But we do want to do more insights, blog posts, and continue to have more transparency with our communication. Once we get the new community tool online we’ll have a place for all of that content and can start to execute on some of those things.

    June 2018

    Q93: Can we get a disagreement stat in OPR? Maybe even show recent ones so we know where we went wrong?

    A93: I’ll pass this feedback along.

    November 27th 2017

    Q55: There was a recent article where the players of a videogame had concerns about how the game worked, communicated those concerns back to the developer of the game, and the developer made changes to the game based on those concerns. The entire process took a relatively short amount of time, from concern to resolution. Okay, to be honest, this scenario has actually happened a lot. Bungie made changes to the XP system in Destiny 2 after the community voiced complaints. EA made changes to Loot Boxes in Star Wars Battlefront 2. Turn 10 made changes to it's VIP system for Forza Motorsport 7. It's a remarkably common experience. Game developer makes a mistake, community responds, developer improves the game, everyone is happy. Why does this evade Niantic? OPR complaints have been coming in since before the AMA's began.

    A55: This is fair criticism. All I can say is that the companies you cite are huuuuuge compared to us. As we grow and expand I think you'll see a lot of these growing pains disappear. Things have gotten better we all know there is room for growth.

  • Gendgi-PGOGendgi-PGO Posts: 3,423 Ambassador

    You missed a few:

    • Quiz Updates: As you’ve already noticed, we’ve consolidated and refreshed our Wayspot criteria in a more streamlined and accessible way. We’re now pushing updates to the training experience and quiz with updated videos and quiz questions that align with the revised criteria. If you’ve already taken and passed the quiz, you won’t have to take it again. This update will only impact new Wayfarers, but we thought you should know anyway.

    Would the Wayfarer team consider doing a live or recorded video of them reviewing nominations to help better educate the community?

    • This is a great idea, and something that we’re already working with our marketing partners to develop and roll out! More details to come.

    Can more photos and examples be added to the Wayfarer criteria to better illustrate what Niantic considers high quality candidates?

    • This is in progress! Not only are we re-evaluating the criteria itself, but also how and where it is displayed. Our goal is to empower you as best as we can so you can make the best decisions on what is a high quality Wayspot.

    I also know that I have made promises about education in the past on behalf of the Wayfarer team, which have not materialized and I massively apologize for that.

    The Wayfarer team is working on an educational campaign (an old tune, I know but I have seen them! This is coming!) to not only raise awareness of how to participate in Wayfarer but also details about what great places for exploration, exercise or to be social means. I'm hoping that the team will also build this information into Wayfarer as well as surfacing on social channels.

  • MargariteDVille-INGMargariteDVille-ING Posts: 2,662 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Gendgi-PGO Thanks! There are probably others. Niantic needs to see that this is a problem, and it's a CHRONIC problem. We explorers deserve to be treated better than this.

  • The26thDoctor-PGOThe26thDoctor-PGO Posts: 4,210 ✭✭✭✭✭

    The list is so long, goes back years and covers a multitude of topics from unfinished or not even started claims of updates and new features, improvements to communication/lack of communication, generally ignoring all sections of the community, bug fixes, criteria improvements, web/app features, dumping of horrible poi while expecting us to maintain their database and it's 'quality etc etc etc

    It's hardly even worth thinking about never mind actually tackling that long list.

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