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  #1  
Old 28th April 2021, 05:32 PM
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Forum Announcement: Critique Threads

Hello everyone! I've not really made an announcement in this part of the forum before, but with the forum activity being as it is, I thought it would be best for visibility.

Recently there has been a discussion on critique/feedback on AHS, and I've been reading each response and considering the wide variety of opinions we have here. In summary, people feel no matter if they come here to post support for Ayu, or if they come here to critique Ayu, that their posts are unwelcome. People equally feel that AHS is only a place for fans, and isn't a place for fans at all.

Obviously, numerous people aren't lying - it's just that at the moment, there is usually only one place to discuss a release, and it leads to those opinions all being posted together. For a long time this has just been the way it is, and the reason for this that I've seen some still say recently is "If you don't like it, don't reply. Just ignore them."

I feel if it was that easy, we wouldn't see this discussion pop back up over the years, and I wouldn't get so much feedback from people admitting they're worried to post or that they no longer feel comfortable on the forum at all.

So, what we'll be trialling out is critique threads. A new one will be made for new releases and concerts, and it will be a place for more critical feedback and discussion. It's something we have tried out on the AHS Discord and it has worked really well so far, something that makes me hopeful for the forum as well.

Does this mean any critical feedback in news threads will be inappropriate?
No. We'll go case by case, but people have always been welcome to say they don't like a release and why in the main threads. If you're wanting to dig deeper into that as a discussion and compare to older releases though, I think a critique thread will be a good place to do that. On that note - this specific point will work on feedback, and we'll be looking at how this works best (if at all) over time.

Can anyone make a critique thread?
Yes. If you'd like to make one for previous music releases, concerts, etc please feel free to do so.

Will this need more moderation to keep on top of?
We've needed more moderators for a while - due to the complications behind the previous mods and admins disappearing, I only managed to get the admin access I need to give appropriate mod powers to new ones late last year. So on that note, if you're interested... let me know.

Why are you separating critique and not compliments?
I feel the main thing that bonds us all together is our support for Ayu, whether it is for her old work, new work, or just her as an artist. I don't think it's a bad thing for encouraging and supportive comments to be alongside people's opinions in news threads, and let the more in-depth critical commentary be still easily accessible, but separate.

I think a really key thing I read in the recent discussion of this is that AHS is one of the few places where people can go to celebrate Ayu, and they want to be able to do that freely. On the flip side, it means it's the only place people can go to vent, critique, and speak their minds about Ayu too - and I do want to give people a place to do that. I just feel people should be able to avoid one or the other easily as over time, it has become clear that both sides are unhappy with being in the same discussion threads.

This is a trial. Feedback is welcome. It also won't work unless the community works with it, so please do report posts, DM me with thoughts, or comment here. As always, a community is a work in progress that is created by the efforts of everyone in it.

Here is the first critique thread, which will be for 23rd Monster. I hope those with critique will feel encouraged to give it a try.
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Old 28th April 2021, 05:47 PM
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I think it’s a great idea to separate more focused critique or discussion in a different thread. A few years back, there was an effort made to create discussion threads for each album. I enjoyed discussing and reading those more focused thoughts a lot.
Similarly, I assume those critique threads will make it easier to discuss aspects of a release in a more targeted way.
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Old 28th April 2021, 06:06 PM
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Thank you for initiating this discussion.

I agree. Having a separate critique thread is recommended, so people feel encouraged to dive deeper into the things they don't like, and explore and compare at ease. A critique thread may also provide people with a way of discussing and debating constructively.

My hope is that even if a critique thread exists, we all remember that communication and social norms are important for a forum to function, no matter what thread you are in and with whom you are talking to.

We are a lot of people here now, so it must be really difficult to moderate. Seeing initiatives like this one, it gives me hope that this community that's still evolving can be a healthy one.
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Old 28th April 2021, 06:21 PM
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Thank you very much again for taking your time to handle all this and trying to make everyone welcomed and happy on AHS.
Can't wait to try the new formula. Hope it will make people more appeased on both side.
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Old 28th April 2021, 10:45 PM
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Thanks mori! This is more than welcome as I believe news threads should be about the news and people celebrating the releases and concerts of their favorite artist ��
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Old 29th April 2021, 12:51 AM
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I appreciate the effort koumori, trying to keep the forum sane, but I'm sorry, to me this is getting ridiculous lol

Man, i haven't been here for a few weeks, thought, maybe there's something about the new video, and i see this instead...lol

Well, i hope you folks on mod team are ready to have double the work lol Might just want to lock the news threads all together (the whole section of the forum) then and move the convos to a separate one... Cuz you guys are gonna go blue having to filter critique from phrase.....

Last edited by BlackSilence; 29th April 2021 at 12:58 AM.
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Old 29th April 2021, 01:14 AM
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I do appreciate the willingness to try and make a space where everyone can be happy here, and I know that you, Koumori, do everything with intention and fairness. But, if I'm going to be honest, I think "over-modding" (not sure what's the best word to use) can hinder a lot of what can be fruitful discussion, as many can feel like it's just policing, even if it isn't.

A lot of comments from members during yesterday's arguments on the forum were out of line and definitely needed to be deleted or reprimanded. But passion for ayu's work (whether it be negative or positive) is what this place is all about, and I think as fans, there's something in us that likes those kind of heated discussions where we can have a chance to defend or critique something we're passionate about.

Those who critique and those who defend have more in common than it seems: we're coming to a place where Ayumi's music, J-Pop, Japanese culture, etc. is not something we can readily talk about in our day to day lives. Coming here and having a meeting of the minds, even if it gets heated, is why we come here, even if it's on a subconscious level, I think.

So suffice all that to say, I'm here for trying the new idea and seeing how it goes, but I also feel that dividing the forum, putting more rules on posts/comments, and going further to mod where and how opinions can be stated is only going to be a further detriment to the forum. And I think that's part of the reason why many parts of the forum aren't as active as they used to be compared to years past.
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Old 29th April 2021, 01:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jean-baptiste View Post
A lot of comments from members during yesterday's arguments on the forum were out of line and definitely needed to be deleted or reprimanded. But passion for ayu's work (whether it be negative or positive) is what this place is all about, and I think as fans, there's something in us that likes those kind of heated discussions where we can have a chance to defend or critique something we're passionate about.
There will still be a place to do that, and honestly I'm hoping to see more of it be done constructively since people who are wanting to discuss to that level have somewhere to go. However, I do keep in mind that just because it worked in one place (the discord) doesn't mean it will work on the forum, so this is just a trial run. I appreciate the honesty.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jean-baptiste View Post
And I think that's part of the reason why many parts of the forum aren't as active as they used to be compared to years past.
I actually feel I haven't really modded that much in the last few years, so this is an interesting insight into how some people might feel. I also hear of people saying I haven't done enough, so... well, you win some, you lose some... we'll see how it goes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BlackSilence View Post
Well, i hope you folks on mod team are ready to have double the work lol Might just want to lock the news threads all together (the whole section of the forum) then and move the convos to a separate one... Cuz you guys are gonna go blue having to filter critique from phrase.....
The main post outlines that critique is still allowed in the news threads to some degree, but full-on discussions and what-not are best had in specified threads. It separates people wanting to compare releases over a few posts (which is fair) from people who want to hype and discuss the release itself, which I think could work out... if people want it to. But again, it's a trial, and I'm hopeful that those who have posted recently about feeling uncomfortable posting here feel seen about us trying new things.

As for the work... I'd hope that ultimately people see that this could work largely in their own favour, since who doesn't want their post to be interacted with positively, whether it's critique or not? But if the idea is disagreed with on the onset, then this community just isn't the place for it and that'll be that.
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Old 29th April 2021, 01:55 AM
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Originally Posted by koumori View Post
I actually feel I haven't really modded that much in the last few years, so this is an interesting insight into how some people might feel. I also hear of people saying I haven't done enough, so... well, you win some, you lose some... we'll see how it goes.
I think your work definitely doesn't go unnoticed! Whether some think you're doing too little or too much, the fact that you're essentially the face of the AHS powers-that-be across the board says a lot about your effort and presence on the forum. Like I mentioned before, I support the trial-run but also wanted to state an opinion that may or may not be an outlier but that I think should be thrown in the mix nonetheless.
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Old 29th April 2021, 02:28 AM
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Originally Posted by jean-baptiste View Post
I think your work definitely doesn't go unnoticed! Whether some think you're doing too little or too much, the fact that you're essentially the face of the AHS powers-that-be across the board says a lot about your effort and presence on the forum. Like I mentioned before, I support the trial-run but also wanted to state an opinion that may or may not be an outlier but that I think should be thrown in the mix nonetheless.
Yeah, I have no doubt some people really do think that and it's good to hear it bluntly. If this does turn out to just make people more annoyed or confused about where to post, or it's too much work to keep up, then the idea will be dropped. Since Ayu is between releases (as far as we know-) right now, this might give us a little while to trial it out, see what sticks. I'm not interested in policing people more than I have to, I just want people to feel comfortable posting their thoughts to interested people.
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Old 30th April 2021, 06:32 PM
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I think this is a great idea.

I think we all agree that the forum should be place where people aren't afraid of contributing and giving their opinion, whether positive or negative, about a release.

So creating a place where people can more openly share their negative opinion and discuss it is a good thing.
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Old 30th April 2021, 11:35 PM
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The exhausting nastiness* coming from some of the forum regulars is a big part of why I stopped posting and only lurked occasionally for basically a decade. So I appreciate this effort and hope it works out.

*I understand nastiness and critique are not at all the same thing, but some of what happens here is very obviously bad-faith provocation and not thoughtful analysis. If the more intense criticism is given a specific place on the forum, maybe it'll discourage people from erupting...
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Old 2nd May 2021, 04:02 AM
MKAyu MKAyu is offline
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Great idea!

I want to celebrate Ayu without having someone reply to everything I write with how unhappy they are . . . but if I were unhappy, I'd hate to be told not to write that, because I'd need to vent and want to discuss it.

This way, we can do both without trodding on each other or insulting each other. ^_^
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Old 3rd May 2021, 08:51 AM
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This thread is an awesome Idea. But over all, isn’t it a bit unrealistic to even wish for an ayu world where nothing but “ ayu is awesome and all is great” exists. Isn’t that what life is all about, accepting the good and the bad? Exchanging different points of view and engaging in adult conversations?. Isn’t filtering out the bad to a certain extent damage the essence of honesty?. I don’t mean to sound rude or condescending. So I apologize in advance.
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Old 3rd May 2021, 05:11 PM
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This thread is an awesome Idea. But over all, isnít it a bit unrealistic to even wish for an ayu world where nothing but ď ayu is awesome and all is greatĒ exists. Isnít that what life is all about, accepting the good and the bad? Exchanging different points of view and engaging in adult conversations?. Isnít filtering out the bad to a certain extent damage the essence of honesty?. I donít mean to sound rude or condescending. So I apologize in advance.
Some fans live in the their own little world and come out nasty when someone has an opinion if itís not liking some of her music.

I like your post and agree with you completely too.
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Old 3rd May 2021, 05:27 PM
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Originally Posted by melissalove View Post
But over all, isnít it a bit unrealistic to even wish for an ayu world where nothing but ď ayu is awesome and all is greatĒ exists. Isnít that what life is all about, accepting the good and the bad? Exchanging different points of view and engaging in adult conversations?. Isnít filtering out the bad to a certain extent damage the essence of honesty?
I think it'll still be important for people to be able to say they don't like a release and why in the news threads, which is why I've said that sort of post will still be fine in the main ones. I have just seen a lot of news threads get derailed over time with people with critique going into a more extended discussion over why something is objectively bad (occasionally veering into just calling people who like it wrong), or those that like the new song/concert/etc getting tired of over a page of people criticising Ayu's vocals when they want a space to see people who are hyping up her recent work. Conversation doesn't move as fast as in irl or even on an instant chat program like Discord, so I feel people need to engage in them differently too and the rules that are applied aren't the same.

I appreciate the honest feedback and if people feel like they aren't getting valuable responses in critique threads and preferred the conversations how they were in the news threads originally, we'll drop the trial. A forum should be structured around how it is used by the members and I'll be keeping that in mind.

However, I hope that those who both agree and disagree with this initiative look at the posts in this thread and see the varied, valid points people are bringing up - both from those who have left the forum for reasons connected to this subject, or those worried that it'll affect quality discourse. Neither side is wrong and I'm hoping we can give both a space to feel like the forum has a place for their opinions.
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Old 4th May 2021, 03:10 AM
MKAyu MKAyu is offline
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Some fans live in the their own little world and come out nasty when someone has an opinion if it’s not liking some of her music.

I like your post and agree with you completely too.
I hear both of you, melissalove and Scorbunny. Honesty is important and it sucks when anyone is nasty to anyone else in the real world for a fandom opinion.

To answer melissalove, though, I don't live in a world where only my ideas exist. I work in a highly contentious workplace where I'm surrounded by and aware of opinions of a personal and insulting nature every day at all times. Every day I am made aware of opinions, not about how good Ayu's singing is, but about how my co-workers want people I respect and love dead, and about how my own deeply-held values are worthless and I am worthless for holding them. I am VERY aware that other people feel differently than I do about everything.

But I've learned there's no point in arguing with other viewpoints. I'm not going to convince someone who doesn't agree with me that I'm right. I may, however, aggravate them into nastiness, without ever making a dent in what they think. That's true whether we're talking about Ayu or politics.

Honesty is great. You should totally say what you think without being bitched at. I support your right to think and speak, and I'm glad there will be a place for you to say it, because that's part of fandom too! But after spending the day hearing some of my less savory co-workers fight about things that make me sick, including animal cruelty and murder, I don't want to spend my leisure time arguing to no purpose, and I don't consider myself delusional or censorious for looking for less conflict when having fun.

Last edited by MKAyu; 4th May 2021 at 03:22 AM.
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Old 4th May 2021, 12:14 PM
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At least this isn’t Popjustice where fans are pretentious and act victimized when their fav releases material they don’t like. It makes me happy to browse here realizing that lol
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Old 24th May 2021, 05:15 AM
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Originally Posted by MKAyu View Post
I hear both of you, melissalove and Scorbunny. Honesty is important and it sucks when anyone is nasty to anyone else in the real world for a fandom opinion.

To answer melissalove, though, I don't live in a world where only my ideas exist. I work in a highly contentious workplace where I'm surrounded by and aware of opinions of a personal and insulting nature every day at all times. Every day I am made aware of opinions, not about how good Ayu's singing is, but about how my co-workers want people I respect and love dead, and about how my own deeply-held values are worthless and I am worthless for holding them. I am VERY aware that other people feel differently than I do about everything.

But I've learned there's no point in arguing with other viewpoints. I'm not going to convince someone who doesn't agree with me that I'm right. I may, however, aggravate them into nastiness, without ever making a dent in what they think. That's true whether we're talking about Ayu or politics.

Honesty is great. You should totally say what you think without being bitched at. I support your right to think and speak, and I'm glad there will be a place for you to say it, because that's part of fandom too! But after spending the day hearing some of my less savory co-workers fight about things that make me sick, including animal cruelty and murder, I don't want to spend my leisure time arguing to no purpose, and I don't consider myself delusional or censorious for looking for less conflict when having fun.
I’m sorry that you seem to be surrounded by such negativity. But it kinda sounds like you’re projecting. You stated “ and about how my own deeply-held values are worthless and I am worthless for holding them”. But you essentially wanting other point of views to be silenced or filtered out which Inevitably makes them worthless. Doesn’t that make you as Complicit as those people you mentioned. Aren’t you kinda doing the same thing to anyone here who holds different standards, views and values. Whatever your irony. I hope that regardless of differences we can all unite in our love for Ayu, that being positive or negative. That we can enter in adult conversations that leads to cohesive views and interesting dialogue.
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Old 26th May 2021, 04:23 AM
MKAyu MKAyu is offline
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Originally Posted by melissalove View Post
I’m sorry that you seem to be surrounded by such negativity. But it kinda sounds like you’re projecting. You stated “ and about how my own deeply-held values are worthless and I am worthless for holding them”. But you essentially wanting other point of views to be silenced or filtered out which Inevitably makes them worthless. Doesn’t that make you as Complicit as those people you mentioned.
No. The people around me call people who have the beliefs I do all manner of names, they say they find people who believe as I do worthless, and they make fun of us. I'm not projecting, they openly say so.

And I'm not silencing you or saying you shouldn't have the right to speak or that your views are worthless. If that were true, why would I be reading what you say and trying to explain myself? I'm saying I look for positivity in my leisure time because that's what helps me relax and heal and face the next day, and so I'm not going to go places that depress me when I'm trying to have fun. I also turn off the TV when something is on that I don't like for any reason, which doesn't stop anyone else from watching.

You say, "we can enter in adult conversations that leads to cohesive views and interesting dialogue." If a dialogue is interesting to you, then you're enjoying it, and you and I both will enter a dialogue we enjoy. But are you say that if you aren't enjoying a dialogue, that if it's not interesting to you, you will stay involved anyway? If so, why? And what do you gain by doing that?

Our views won't be cohesive however much we talk if you say, "This song sucks," and I say, "I love this song!" We can talk about why, but our views aren't going to change. They're both valid views based on what we personally enjoy, so the only reason to talk about it is if you find it fun to talk about it. If you do, then by all means have fun, you should be enjoying yourself! Your views are valid and if that's how you have fun with them, there are many others that enjoy it too and you can find them here. I hope you do.

Last edited by MKAyu; 26th May 2021 at 05:00 AM.
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