How to Be a Good Moderator

Welcome to content creation! As a new streamer, moderation is an important part of your job. Moderators, also known as mods, are key in keeping the chat positive and engaging for your viewers. This guide will cover the basics of moderation, its importance, and give you technical tips to become an effective moderator.

Course Goals:
1. Learn the basics of moderation and its importance.

2. Learn how to use commands and chat modes to manage chat.

3. Learn how to deal with chat and harassment. 

The Importance of Moderators for Streamers

A moderator is someone chosen by the streamer to make sure the chat is friendly and safe. They connect the chat community with the streamer and help maintain peace by addressing problems before they get worse.

Moderators do more than just answer questions and create commands. They also serve as security guards for the community and the streamer’s business. They use different tools like commands, chat modes, and moderation tools to prevent harmful activities, enforce rules, and keep a positive environment.

Using Commands

As a moderator, it’s important to learn basic commands for effective chat management. While platforms like Twitch have mod views to help with moderation, it’s crucial to know how to use commands even without relying solely on these tools, especially when moderating from a mobile device..

Here are some commonly used Twitch commands:

  • /timeout ‘username’ [Time in seconds]: Temporarily restricts a user from chat for a specific duration. Useful for addressing spoilers, rude statements, or chat spam. Example: /timeout StreamerSquare 600 – User named ‘StreamerSquare’ will be timed out for 600 seconds.
  • /ban ‘username’ or /unban ‘username’: Bans or unbans a user from the chat. This command is useful when dealing with users who consistently violate chat rules or spread harmful content.

Additionally, you can add a reason for a ban or timeout by providing additional information with the command, which can help track unban requests and review ban history.

Specialized bots like Nightbot, Moobot, Streamlabs, or StreamElements let streamers and moderators make custom commands for their channels. These commands can guide users to certain websites or give useful reminders. Each bot has its own commands and format, so it’s important to get to know the commands specific to the bot your streamer uses.

Mod View for Twitch: A Beginner’s Guide

Twitch provides a built-in tool called ‘Mod View,’ which simplifies the moderation process, especially for busy channels. Mod View allows moderators to execute commands like timeouts and bans with a single click. It offers layout customization, blocked word lists, and an AutoMod queue.

To access Mod View, follow these steps:

  1. Visit your Twitch channel.
  2. Click the sword icon located under the chat dialog box.
  3. This will open Mod View and display various dialog boxes where moderators can perform their tasks.

In Mod View, you can do things like slow down the chat, block certain words, see the AutoMod queue, and keep an eye on recent timeouts or raids from other streamers. You can also adjust the AutoMod level to filter out offensive comments and remarks based on severity.

Remember that enabling AutoMod and setting up appropriate moderation tools within Mod View can enhance chat safety and protect your community.

Dealing with Chat and Harassment

Moderators deal with different types of chat participants, like active chatters, trolls, attention seekers, and lurkers. It’s important to know that context is key when moderating and deciding if a message needs attention.

Here are some levels of moderation to address different situations:

First Level Moderation

  1. De-escalation: Defusing potential conflicts is essential for maintaining a peaceful chat environment. Moderators can explain why a statement is inappropriate and help users understand different perspectives. For example, you can say, “We appreciate your perspective on ‘x’ game, but not everyone feels the same way.” Sometimes privately chatting with a viewer in a bad mood can prevent further issues.
  2. Counter-Trolling: Harmless trolls may occasionally appear in chat. Instead of engaging in a hostile manner, moderators can respond with light-hearted comments that turn the tables. For example, saying, “Good for you. Would you like a cookie?” can defuse tension and even amuse viewers. However, it is crucial to ensure the counter-troll remains harmless and does not cross any boundaries.
  3. Deleting Messages: Moderators can remove potentially offensive comments to make it clear that certain behavior is not acceptable. This can initiate discussions about appropriate conduct and educate users on why certain statements are harmful. Be prepared for potential pushback from users whose comments are deleted and might become hostile.

Second Level Moderation

  1. Emote-Only Mode: Enabling emote-only mode allows users to express themselves through emotes only, which can help prevent direct harmful comments. This mode is particularly effective against hate raids or spam bots. However, be cautious as certain emotes can still be used negatively.
  2. Slow Mode: When chat becomes overwhelming, enabling slow mode can be helpful. It limits the frequency of messages and reduces spam, making it easier for moderators to manage. Slow mode is especially beneficial for larger channels with a high volume of viewers.
  3. Follower/Subscriber-Only Mode: In extreme cases where slow mode is insufficient, follower or subscriber-only mode can provide additional chat restrictions. Follower-only mode requires users to follow for a certain period before being allowed to chat, while subscriber-only mode restricts chat to subscribed users. These modes help combat spam, hostility, and harassment by limiting participation to trusted individuals.
  4. Timeouts: If users persist with unwarranted behavior, issuing timeouts can be necessary. Progressive timeouts starting from a few minutes to longer durations may be employed, depending on the severity and persistence of the violations. If all previous moderation levels fail, a ban might be necessary.

Third Level of Moderation

  1. Bans: When all other measures prove ineffective, banning a user becomes necessary to protect the streamer and the community from persistent spammers, harassers, or extremely hostile individuals. While banning is not foolproof, it helps reduce harmful behavior within the chat.
  2. Reporting: If users engage in severe harassment or hate speech, moderators should report them to the platform, such as Twitch. Ban evasion, death threats, or violent comments warrant reporting, and providing chat logs as evidence can support appropriate actions. Reporting such incidents is essential for maintaining a safe and welcoming streaming environment.

Important Tips About Moderation

Here are some important tips to consider as a moderator:

Tip 1: Respect privacy and confidentiality. Moderators often have access to sensitive information, and it is crucial to keep such information private. If any inappropriate sharing occurs among moderators, address it and reconsider their role.

Tip 2: Uphold community safety and report violations. Moderators should promptly report users who break the platform’s Terms of Service, including harassment, racism, sexism, or hate speech. Taking action against bad behavior is crucial, and inaction can perpetuate a harmful environment.

Tip 3: Be mindful of mental health concerns. Moderators may come across users in need of professional help. While moderators are not qualified to provide counseling, they can de-escalate situations and provide information on resources like www.takethis.org or helplines. Remember to report serious self-harm or violence threats to Twitch.

Tip 4: Take care of yourself. Moderating can be demanding, so prioritize self-care. Remember to move around, stay hydrated, and manage real-world responsibilities. Don’t hesitate to seek support from other moderators when necessary. It is essential to maintain a healthy balance.

Conclusion

  1. Moderators are responsible for keeping the chat positive and engaging for viewers.
  2. Moderators need to be familiar with different levels of moderation to address different situations.
  3. Moderators should also be mindful of mental health concerns and take care of themselves

By following these courses and continuously learning and adapting, you will become a valuable asset to the streamer’s community as a moderator. Good luck on your moderating journey!