What would you want to tell the new Ingress Community Manager?
In this thread - https://community.ingress.com/en/discussion/comment/128056#Comment_128056 Brian mentions that Niantic are working to hire a new Community Manager.
As part of the Ingress community, what would you want them to know? If they checked this thread on their first day on the job, what things would you want them to put on their “to do list”?
Whoever will fill Krugs shoes must i hope will be just as passionate and caring as he was about the game and connecting to the community. I never met him sadly but i knew his reputation by both teams how much he did for ingress. He made the AMA a thing to look forward and getting info straight from niantic. I hope we can get back to those days. Also events and things to engage new and older players is something we need so the game can grow and not lose more players due to corona and other factors leading to people quitting the game. Perhaps the subscription is around the corner so that game can stand on its own feet hopefully and bring in some cash to niantic.
> 2. The game is all about community
This is perhaps the most important takeaway, especially as a community manager. The community is amazing and does crazy things you'd never have thought of. If the new CM does read through this thread, please make sure to really get to know the community :D
Also, just as a heads up, "working on finding a new community manager" doesn't mean we'll have one the next week. Don't go haunting Brian because he said we'll get one, give it some time.
Dear new CM,
First of all, Niantic has to improve the Wayfarer garbage and the spoofing/multiccounts problems and you should keep us informed about it.
Then, you have to think that the playerbase is from all around the world, situations may vary and demands will be different (specially with the COVID situation).
This also means different timezones, giving news based in US window frame only and just in English is not a good thing, specially with a playerbase eager to hear from you, as well as having contact with users or answering them only half-way through certain channels, like personal Twitter accounts or chat groups language restricted, where people from other countries have to be lurking in order to translate and make the news reach other non English speaking communities. You can set up an specific hour to deliver important news, so that everyone will know when to expect them, and instead of writing a post in a random thread of the forums you could communicate through the app that all of us use (make opt-out notifications for the comm's news tab!!!).
Many people quit and/or rate 1* due to lack of communication, not only in terms of news, but also because of random bans (iOS anyone?), lack of notifications when there is a scanner problem, some server/client update (that will make Ingress laggy or unplayable, and this is a game where you have to travel and move and sometimes spend money to play big!!!) or lack of help from support. If you translate the game to X languages, you should have people speaking X languages to be able to help the players. Otherwise, it seems that you speak X languages in Ingress only for the part that is good for you (aka gives money to you), while people using other Niantic apps have help and official translations of news reaching them through official websites.
You should translate the support and official Ingress websites. You could also make language specific subforums, where communities can get in touch using their own language, get translated news and help each other directly through means provided by you, instead of having agents being lost because they don't know how to get in touch with others or having them organizing themselves through other apps that many other players don't use. But add moderators that speak that languages, otherwise, it will be just another wasted opportunity.
Use the app/mailing system to make polls (or redirect people to a place where polls are held) so you can get more input about what you have done, what you are doing or what to do next, instead of just reading the more vocal current users of the forums that do not represent the whole community.
Read the ideas that people give and ANSWER to them, for God's sake. There are many good ideas lost in the forums (h e c k, even Kinectic capsules and Apex were ideas given here) and some of them are just pure logical things, but the people wasting time and making an effort trying to help you don't even get a simple response like "good idea, we'll think about that" or even if it is impossible or unaffordable, just say it. When people speaks directly to you, you should at least have the minimum manners and reply them. You have an ARMY of people trying to help you in Telegram (there are lots of Ingress news channels in lots of languages!!) and other messaging apps/platforms trying to spread the news about events, game changes and even ofer2 comments in the forums. And sometimes those complains/great ideas don't reach you cause people just don't even care to say it to you anymore, the general feeling after so many time is that we're talking to a wall.
Check what the communities are doing in order to get the best of these times we are living, we had starbust events, a Hackvent calendar and now there is a Couchomaly incoming. We have given you ideas for events to use the drone as it is, to make a Tess II with the drone while in lockdown and there is even people keeping track of the latest minievents stats because you seem to be unable to do a simple ranking (even if there is no medal/achievement involved). When it seems that you don't care for the playerbase, the playerbase starts not caring for you, and this road leads to a unhappy ending.
And finally, good luck, there is many resentment and toxicity awaiting for you, but you'll find also lots of love, support and good ideas from the community.
PS: Many people still think that Niantic created Prime just for the sake of it, they don' t know about the robovm issue or the decision they had to make regarding new servers, etc. So this lack of communication was already there even when we had a CM.
Whenever the time comes to be moving on, don't compare anyone in the player base to "rhetorical terrorists". It shows a lack of thought towards all of us.
I would like to see in this post a comment from @RedSoloCup
I don't recall ever reading this goodbye post, https://community.ingress.com/en/discussion/10812/goodbye-of-a-vanguard/p1
But 90% of what that person went over, is exactly how I'm feeling now. Here we are a year later and some things haven't changed, at all. And while a few people with one opinion doesn't mean things should change, I think some of these are pretty important, especially coming from a past vanguard.
Anyways, I'd want them to read that post.....
My fear is that Niantic is just hiring a middle man. I'm hopeful that part of hiring this person, is re-evaluating the culture that agents perceive. At least I do. It's time to evolve a little, the game, the way you work with your community and the way you communicate in general. It's obvious that the top secret thing you have been using for the past 8 years isn't working too well. If you want us to love this game, let us feel like we're part of it, beyond just playing it. Let us feel like we have a voice in the way the game is shaped moving into the future. I promise you that working with your community will give you a return like you've never seen. You want us to give you better ratings and invite our friends to play, yet you sweep issues under the rug and more or less ignore us. Give me a break. To me, a 5* rating is more than the game working without bugs.
I wish you the best in finding this person (you should do it sooner than later) and giving them the power to actually be helpful to the future of the game, not just a talking head giving us the same non-answers you've been supplying more or less the entire time I've been playing...
"Hi Andrew. Please never leave us again."
They need to recognise that agents submitting missions put a lot of time and effort into them and they deserve better than a cursory rejection email with no proper guidance on what the reviewer has an issue with.
Their rejection reasons appear totally random, eg banner mission set of a historic university building with all portals being on campus rejected for ‘image having no relevance to portals’.
If they continue to expect agents to contribute free content then they should show a bit more respect for those of us who want to do so.
To the new Community Manager,
Please create an independent evaluation system of Ingress community groups wherein its members can give feedback on its community and the community leaders’ performances. The evaluation process can be done through the use of Surveymonkey or other similar survey app/tool. The feedback process encourages accountability and improvement of areas which will strengthen the local community and Ingress Prime.
1. If you are here to basically copy and paste things like support does, please quit, that'd not what anyone wants, its insulting
2. Engage with the community, dont justbsay "i hear you" properly engage, even if its just to give hints to stuff down the line, or if feedback is given fromt eh community, say how niantic reacted to thst feedback
3. Run polls for things people actually want in the game (and try to get agents who are playing to know about them too through the news feed) so that when features are being discussed by niantic, the people playing its opinions are also put into the mix
1. Do the exact opposite of what the last community manager did.
2. Let Biff touch your beard.
I feel like these are the same thing.
Why would you ask Niantic to evaluate your local community? Can't you do that yourself? And let your local community leaders know if there's something you think should be addressed? Niantic isn't responsible for how your local community chooses to run itself. That's really up to you guys, don't you think?
I would tell: back in the days, 05Feb'21, was the best day ever, 2 great features were released/announced and you got hired too late to promote&celebrate this miracle... Now you need to wait 6 years for a similar event.
@Rostwold from the monetization thread you linked to, you're correct that we didn't do all the things, but I disagree that, "Niantic did precisely nothing with any of these ideas." Here are a few specific suggestions from Agents in the thread you linked to, which we've worked on:
We may not have addressed these in exactly the way every Agent expected, but from this list of suggestions by Agents, we then did the following:
There are still more ideas in the thread you linked to, and other threads in the forum, and we'll continue working to ship new features and iterate on existing ones. We do listen and act on these suggestions and feature requests.
We want archive medals why they come so rarely?
Experimented with Niantic Archive medals
Out of interest, why did they stop? I'm certain that there are a good bunch of agents who would still buy them.
@NianticBrian i need archive medals and media capsules
Could you bring back Archive medals? Latest packs were really nice, I would love one each 2/3 months to support Ingress with the CMU I'm already accumulating since I don't really use boosts daily and they take space.
Susanna Moyer when? 👀
My personal advice to our eventual new hire is that we do an awful lot of listening, but we don't do a lot of talking. Agents want to know they're not shouting into the ether, but they really are being heard. We need a visible presence in the community, in the Forum, that Agents can get to know better as our official conduit or connector.
However, I'm still hesitant about sharing roadmaps publicly because 1) it's very hard, especially during the pandemic, to predict what the world will look like in 3 months time; 2) I've seen player expectations grow considerably the longer the span of time between announcement and release, and my development style is MVPs and 2-week sprints, where we launch then iterate; 3) I want the flexibility to be able to pivot and react if we need to, rather that overpromise and then miss deadlines or renege altogether.
Also, always remember that whatever Agents say and however they phrase it, they love Ingress and they're passionate about the game and community. And we do, too.
I think there are times when playing it safe is the right thing to do, but there are other times when it behooves you to not at least chime in on a forum thread and say something like, this is something we’re working on. The portal indicators was a perfect example. There were a number of threads that came up, people arguing over how feasible it was and just a couple of weeks later, surprise, it’s a feature. At a time when 45 seconds of your time would do so much for the “community” and do a little hype work for the ingress team, I’m surprised you didn’t take advantage of it. That 45 seconds would have spread like wildfire in the ingress community. Hype!! Then, a few weeks later, it gets hyped all over again! 🤷🏼♂️
I also don’t see the harm in sharing some details with a disclaimer. I’m not sure what that would look like. For example, the current discussion about tasks being something we might see in Ingress someday. Engaging with some follow up questions to some of the ideas proposed, acknowledging it’s been discussed (but not something being worked on or even an idea we’re moving forward with) or even just saying it’s not something we’re wanting to pursue currently 🤷🏼♂️🤷🏼♂️
I get we’re all passionate about the game, I’m glad you realize that. I know I’ve been very vocal in these forums, but I do enjoy it and hope to play it for the foreseeable future!
You are right, @NianticBrian, I was overstepping the mark on that one, and I apologise. I would edit my post if I was still able to - in fact I was planning to do just that after seeing the subscription package, but the forum won't let me.
Doesn't Need to be a road map, but, you could say " we have these ideas, what do you guys think" or "this is in the pipeline for the next couple of months, assuming all goes well"
Getting feedback from community directly on something u plan or want do and u would get majority that says this doesnt seem like fun would give an idea back to the team that maybe wasting resources on something that community wont like can save you valuable time and resources on doing something that in the long run wont be worth it. Things like that would be good to do, even do polls or something on things and ideas you got but dont know how community responds, why not ask the community and players directly then ?
Why waste something on idea A when community rather want idea B or even C.. ?
Have not just a brain for the game, but also the passion. Somebody who currently or has played before should jump to the front of the hiring line. The worst thing would be to hire an outsider who is all about PR and doesn't really care much for the game and can't relate to the players.
Listen to us and communicate with us. If you spend all your time trying to reinvent the wheel, it will fail. Evolutionary changes are important but a lot of our requests are quite fundamental things that once made Ingress great but that Niantic has departed from, such as events events events! Obviously being in a pandemic right now, some of these events aren't possible, but when it is safe to do so, these events are crucial to community building and the success of Ingress. Even before the pandemic, Niantic was heading in the wrong direction.
The vast reduction and infrequency of anomalies was devastating to the game. Unless I'm lucky enough to get into a recharge room, it's hard to be invested in the outcome of an anomaly if there is only one event happening on our continent thousands of miles away; or in the case of the last canceled series, only one event on the other side of the world. When anomalies happen locally, players who haven't been active in months or years resurface. Some even stick around for a while after the event. It also helps with retention of new players.
The other great thing about having more anomalies is also having more Mission Days. In many ways, I enjoy MDs even more than anomalies. Standalone MDs separate from anomalies should also be brought back. I was cruising along with the badge and then these events pretty much stopped happening, aside from being paired with less frequent anomalies. I was at 11 in November 2018 and have only been to one since then.
First Saturdays have been the one shining light in the last year or two. But in a post-pandemic world, we should go back to having a robust schedule of anomalies and MDs.
Play the game!
Understand what makes the community great and unique.
Andrew had experience in the game (from organising anomalies to field ops,...), The new GCM should have that too.
That would be my main 3 things I'd wait for a new GCM, playing the game would imply understanding the community, which could have been a 4th point.
Also I'd want to say good luck, we're a very demanding community, and we have high expectations, but we also know when to thanks people and recognize their efforts (or at least I hope we do), so be sure any step toward more communication will be appreciated.