1) Don't post in the forums that you are looking for a server to be admin on. Many good servers don't pick players from a forum and give you admin or mod. The servers that do this usually crash after a month or two, and disappear forever. You are better off joining a server and playing on it. This also shows that you are lazy usually, or that you are not able to find it anywhere else, likely because of inexperience or for reasons to which any owner would want to know beforehand.
2) Building Skills are not Admin Skills. A player's ability to build things do not make them admin material. If you say that you want to be an admin because you are a good builder, it is like saying you want to be a programmer because you are a good historian. They are not related at all, and usually admins and moderators don't do a lot of building unless the server is very new.
3) Join a server and earn it. You have a better chance of actually becoming a mod or admin by joining a server, playing on it, helping everyone, obeying rules, being respectful, and being a very good player. Joining a server and asking to be mod most likely will end up with you being kicked from the server. By joining a server and earning it, you get more respect from everyone and usually keep your position longer. And it means the others trust you more and you can do a lot more.
4) Be mature, act mature. Basically, act like an adult. Don't yell and scream at others. Don't use language that is not appropriate. Spell correctly and use proper english/language of the owner. If you do not sound mature, then you will be looked at as immature and not likely to get admin or mod. This does go for when you are not talking to them. Server owners can and will look at your past, see how you are. If you act different, then there is a chance that you are not telling the whole truth and you may likely end up not getting anywhere. Be careful, like a tatoo, posts are forever.
5) Be respectful to the owner and other admins. They control your fate on the server really. If you don't respect them , they can likely get you removed from your position of power, which would not be what you want.
So really, if you don't like something, say so in a calm way, once that shows maturity and respectfulness. As I say "Don't anger me, or you feel my wrath". That does go for players and staff by the way.
6) Be sure you know how to use plugins CORRECTLY. Many servers now need you to know how to use a lot of plugins, a few like Essentials, World Edit, Factions, Towny, World Guard, MultiVerse, iConomy, the list goes on. If you do not know how to use them, then you will probably not be able to become admin or mod on a server. If you don't know how to use them, try this: Download the latest CraftBukkit and make a Bukkit-enabled server.
Add a very basic suite of server tools/plugins: I recommend WorldEdit/WorldGuard/CommandBook to start with because they are really super simple. Get a friend to join your private server. Op them and ask them to test stuff. Until you are at ease doing this, and configuring everything to your liking, you will have a hard time being useful as an Admin. A major part of an Admin's work consists of troubleshooting game features or plugin features that don't work, or have mysteriously stopped working. If you don't understand the plugins, you can't fix the problem.
And yes being admin also means having excellent attention to detail. Don't want to comb 3 days of server logs looking for the key exception that explains why the server keeps crashing? Too bad. Don't want to take the time to fine-tune your group and permissions nodes skills? Too bad.
7) Do not nag about it. When you start nagging about it, it is just going to lower your chances of getting it. Ask once, then don't ask again until like a week later. Nagging will make it worse, and you might get muted by the staff. It is a waste of your time and does not help you in the slightest.
8) Don't expect payments. Honestly, being an admin or mod is NOT a paying job. You volunteer to do these things, and so don't expect payment. Some servers do not pay their staff while some only pay the veteran staff. Your job is to be a mod or admin, and being paid is not in the description for that unless the server owners decide they want to. Don't expect to make anything out of being a mod unless you are a very good one, in which case you should start your own server.
9) Multi-managing servers is NOT good. I don't care if you are a machine, if you are admin on 3 servers, you do not need to be admin on a fourth. The more you say you are admin on currently, you are saying you are an admin jumper, which means you are not reliable. Stay on one or two servers and stay with them until they die or you get replaced. THEN you can go out and find another server. The more you say you are currently, and the more you say you have been in the past, the more likely one might consider you a jumper, not reliable, and not one to place on staff.
10) Saying you are "good" is not good enough. What is good? If you can explain what the hell good is, then saying you are "good" is not it. Just saying good means you can't explain how little you know, and that you just think you know it. Never good. Saying "I am good, trust me", is like going up to a drug addict and him saying "I am clean, trust me". Do you believe it? No. So don't think it will work here. If you really want to say you are good, explain how you are good, what you are good at, why you are good, explain, elaborate, and you might stand a chance.
11) Use a readable font and make it look good. This means to NOT use fonts that are above 3, even above 2 unless you use the 3 for titles and such. Also do not use stupid fonts and colors, as people don't want to waste their time trying to figure out what you are saying. Make it look clean, professional, and easy on the eyes. The default settings for posting are fine.
12) Applying for a lot of servers at once is NOT a good idea. That shows you are just being a shotgun admin, not really caring, just looking for power. Apply to one, play on it, see how you like it. If you like it, DON'T apply for another server. If you are rejected, or decided you do not want it, then tell the person you applied that you do not want the position, BUT BE RESPECTFUL! That can haunt you for some time.
13) Fill out applications correctly and with details. If you see an application, FILL IT OUT THE WAY THE OP WANTS IT. They made it that way for a reason, so follow it. That means those "copy/paste" applications are bull. They show no desire. They basically show desperation. Meaning you don't deserve it. Do what the OP wants, or don't do it at all. Simple as that. If you use a CTRL+V approach to applications, then this is what it says: "I don't care at all about what you want, here is this thing". It tells that you do not care. Do it, and it will not really work out well.
For starters, make sure you check out a player's story. Don't take everything they say at face value. People will lie and cheat to get into a position of power and will be glad to tear down everything that you worked hard to make with a few commands, a flick of a finger, and the press of the Enter key. If they say something, check out other posts they have made, try to make sure what they say is true. Using a player's post count is one way to help. If they have a very low post count, but said they held a lot of position, ran their own server, or even played for a long time, then I would investigate them and make sure what they said is true.
This does not mean all low-posted players are not reliable, it just means that you should make sure it is true. High-end posters are not exempt from this. If I was to apply for a mod position, then you should check my posts, see if I have said anything in the past that differs from the app I send you. Don't get fooled by what people say. You are the last line of defense. Make sure you make it count.
- Be prepared not to play. As much as you'll always want to, you'll find there are many more pressing issues to deal with as the owner, whether it's sorting out webspace, organising the next big event, preventing grief, preventing fights or adding new features and ideas to keep the game fresh. As as admin, you have to start enjoying preparing the game for somebody else.
You no longer have time to enjoy building things, but you'll learn to enjoy getting a good RP going with a quest you've written for them, or seeing people designing awesome stuff in the land you spend the last two days preparing and protecting.
You will also notice that people will expect you to do much more than you can, and get annoying when you don't deliver on their unreasonable requests. Remember, you are there to keep it running, but not deal with their every whim - there's a place for people like this, it's called a Ban List.
- Remember that it is your server. You own the server, not Joe Bloggs who just entered. While it's important to be nice, careful with what you say and listen to people - it's equally important to remember who makes the decisions.
If somebody is trying to tell you that you're doing it all wrong, it might not be the server for them - there's a place for people like this, it's a Ban List.
- Respect your players. If you respect the people who play well, and treat each other well, you will get respect in return. That does not mean that everybody deserves respect though, there are some people who will constantly push you and try to subvert the rules. There's a place for these people, it's called a Ban List.
- Admin is not a right. It is important to recognize people who are contributing and show good leadership characteristics; whether it's giving them a few extra commands, moderator status or even just a 'Thank you'.
There will also be people who try to ask for these things, or even demand it of you. People like that have a place in this world, it's called a Ban List.
- Don't be afraid. It's easy to get worried when you make a mistake, but we all do and we always learn from them. But sometimes, the mistake can be pointed out by other players; they will tell you how they are going to report you for it, or spread bad rumors about your server if you don't listen to them. There's a place for people like this, it's called a Ban list.
- Have pride. When running a server, it's easy to take shortcuts and let shoddy work get on the server. It's ok not to be perfect, but make sure to do your best and to be proud of what you do. This includes your Ban List - don't use community list or shared lists such as McBans - you should be proud of having your own list, that you made personally.
There are players out there that claim to be with forums and are there to review your server. There is a list of things you should do.
2) Tell them that they are not
3) Mute them
4) Make sure they don't have permissions to build
5) Laugh some more
These kind of people are liars, and are not there to review. Never listen to them, and do not give them any commands, including op or all perms. Just follow the steps above, and then ban them. There are the select few that are actually legit, but don't expect them often, or even at all. They likely give you weeks notice before anything. If someone claims to be a part of a forum, just go to that forum, type their name, and see what comes up. Usually you will get nothing. Then laugh, and ban.
One thing that is sometimes overlooked as an owner is that even though you are an owner, you have to show respect to your players, your staff, and your potential staff. If you disrespect them, insult them, yell at them, or just just plain rude to them, then they might leave you, and then tell others that, which would not be good for you.
A server's rep is influenced by the owner's rep and their staff rep. A bad owner will drive players away the same as a bad staff rep's will too. A server who has the best setup will not do well if the owner and staff have a bad rep.
Reverse is also true, a poor server will not do well even if the owner and staff are well known. You have to keep you and your rep up, which means respect, commitment, willingness, and things that people expect from you. If you do not meet their expectations, you can suffer for it.
When banning people, it's not about who you like on the server. Not to ban people on whether or not you agree with their policies, interests, or views. If these things become a nuisance to overall community, then you should consider a ban, or some form of punishment. You shouldn't ban people depending on if you like them, because all that does is lose you players. It's if the community likes them. If the community would get mad about the ban, and it only happens because you disagree with them, then you make yourself look like the bad guy in that situation. Also, if they never broke any rules, people can rage about random bans. If they decide to get a few friends together, or have an alternate account, you could be the victim of some serious griefing. Also, they could go on some forums or websites (here, planet minecraft, minecraft server lists) and post bad things about your server, giving it bad rep.
When a player first joins the first impression is everything. The first few minutes often already decide whether a player is here to stay or not. To give your server a good impression can be as easy as spending some time on making a good-looking spawn point. When a new player joins, welcome him heartily, show him around on the server. Make him feel welcome, like a part of the family.
'Administrator' is your job, not your title. If you can find the time for it, play like other players. Throw all your spawned items in the lava and punch a tree. Build a house.
Of course you need to help a player when something is wrong. But why not help him as well when he is working on a large build project (with legit items of course, unless you own a free-build server).
You'll often be forced to make all kinds of decisions, like deciding how a player should be punished (this usually isn't the most fun thing to do), or whether you'll add a certain plugin or enable a certain feature for your players. First of all; you're the owner, so your decision is always final. On the other hand, you didn't create your server for yourself. You created it for the people who play on it. This means that, if the situation is appropriate, you can always ask the players about their thoughts on the subject. You could use a poll system, but when you ask them in-game or on a forum, hearing their reasoning behind their decisions may help you decide as well.
Another major issue that is seen is the applications for your staff. A good server does NOT do this:
Are you a good builder:
Y you want this:
If yours look like this, you are doing it very wrong, and expect a lot of applications that look like this...
Age: 25 (lying here)
Are you a good builder: Yes (again, lying)
Y you want this: Because I would make a good admin
That application is, to put it simply, crap. No info, no experience, and has no reason to even exist. If you have your apps set up like this, you will get trolled. Expect it.
Now, a good application requires details, time, effort, and covers alot of stuff. EX:
How long have you been on the server:
Reason for wanting this position (requires paragraph):
What you can bring:
Proof of work:
That application is much more detailed in that it requires the applicant to provide more information, and makes it easier to sort applications out and see who is more suitable for the position.
An example response that is not really acceptable can be:
Age: 21 (lying though)
How long have you been on the server: Few weeks
Reason for wanting the position: I am a fair player, i try to sort problems out while following all of the rules. I have not griefed or broken any rules. People on the server love me and so I decided to apply.
Experience: Owned my own server
Contact info: Skype - lordralex
Dedicated time: few hours a day
What you can bring: Love, dedication, help
Proof of work: None
Please accept me xD
Let's pick at this application, which is something you should ALWAYS do. A key to a good check is by going thru the player's past posts and see what they said before they applied here. If you see differences that are very noticeable, that is a very good sign that the player is lying, and who knows what else is wrong.
This does take time, but is a very good way to check a player out. For example, if I said in another app that I was 19, then you know I am lying, and you should reject this on the spot. For the time on the server, actually look at the logs. See when they log in and out of the server. See how long they play.
I could have joined 2 weeks ago, stayed for 5 minutes, left, and joined for 5 minutes every day. That is not a trait you want your admins to have. Reject. Reason for wanting this, this section unto itself is short. It is not descriptive, short, and very bland. A good application should be longer, more detailed, and be very good, you should say "Wow, that is good", not "Wtf?" Experience is another key factor.
While you should always consider those that do not have experience, don't believe a lot here as well. Check their posts. If they said they ran a server, but have 10 posts, then something is probably fishy. Also, the default answer I will guarantee you is going to be "I ran my own server". Now, why do you not? Why did you stop? Ask questions, the more you ask them, the better applications you get. A player who is lying will give crappy answers, which you can notice. A player who actually did can prove it.
Dedicated time is also a good factor. If they can dedicate a few hours a day is good. You want an active admin, one who says on for a bit of time. What you can bring is more opinionated, but can reveal a lot.
A long answer with reasons is good, not that. That is bull. Proof, make them show what they said is true. If they cannot, then they should not be accepted. Simple as that.
This is what you should be looking for:
How long have you been on the server: Started playing with the server about 2 weeks ago
Reason for wanting this position (requires paragraph): I have played on the server for some time now and I have done my best to help new players learn about the server while also enjoying playing. I have been active in the server forum asking and answering questions while also not breaking any rules. I have been told by a few people that I should apply, so I have some players support as well.
Experience (details): I have been the admin of a few servers that stopped because the owner stopped paying the hosters so they shut it down. I have worked with the Multicraft cp alot and have used Filezilla very well along with Notepad++. I have created multiple servers and can help debug plugins with my limited knowledge of Java. I have used a fair bit of plugins and know how to find plugins.
Contact info: Skype: lordralex, email: [email protected]
Dedicated time: 3 hours each day, probably 2 times a day
What you can bring: I can bring a few ideas that I had from other servers that I have been in, a new set of eyes on the current setup, and the experience of running a few servers and helping others solve their problems with servers, as well as my plugin development experience and debugging.
Proof of work: Worked with 2 servers, IPs can be sent in a PM if requested
While this is still lacking, it shows time and thought, which is something you should be looking for in any application. Although I can still lying in this app, you should still verify everything. Notice how I said I can send IPs in a PM, that is good. It means that I am not just saying "I am on this server" which can be seen as placing ads. PMs are just you and him (her if it is a her) and you can easily jump on the server at any time without warning to verify this. Always put details and facts in it, someone who is on more but fills a small app out is not as useful as one who is not on as long, but has alot of experience and time to fill something out well.
Now, we know that you can just create an thread and say you are looking for people. That is easy. But that is all not that needs to be done. Once you get an applicant, you have to research them, read into their past, see what they were. That is the challenge. You need to know how to effectively find what someone has done in the past and determine if they are worth dealing with. There are many ways to do this, however I will cover my ways of handling it.
Step 1: Check their previous bans
This is actually a very simple step. A moderator operates a site that you can use to get a person's ban history from the most popular of global ban list sites. This site is located here: http://fishbans.com/search.php This is a very nice tool to have. All you do is enter someone's name, or even a group of people, hit Submit, and see what you get.
I will point out now that the system is a bit flawed, the bans it gets do not show whether they are local or global. However, this site lets you see what they were banned, and you can determine if you should allow them.
Step 2: Check their post history
Now, this one is a bit trickier, as you cannot see everything they have posted. However, this does not mean you cannot try. Let's do this.
Now, the most simple way is to just go to their profile, and click "Find Content" and read their stuff. Yes, sucks, doesn't it? Get used to it. You will have to get used to things that you do not like. Now, you can read their posts. If they seem like a immature person but try to act differently in the app, that should be a flag to you.
Step 3: Talk with them
Just plain old have a conversation. Ask them questions. Test them. I cannot tell you how many people this will drive away. Any good staff should be prepared for this. They should be able to explain their stuff they claim. For example, if they said they worked with plugins, ask them questions about which ones, how to do x and y, what does z do. This is a good way to find liars.
1: Credit to every thread I saw to inspire me to write this
2: Credit to Crunkatog for the experiment information
3: Credit to Amazing_Kid for the nagging
4: Credit to Bilkokuya for the list
5: Credit to baggerboot for the section added to the Server owners
6: Credit to Teqx for the suggestion on the format of the thread
7. Thanks to zak561 for the ban paragraph
* These results are not typical and most players do not become a mod or admin. These are only tips on increasing those chances.
* Any information in this thread can be used on any other thread located within Minecraftforum and Curse-affiliated sites, as long as any information that is used is quoted and the maker of the thread is given credit for any and all parts of this thread that are used. This information cannot be used on any other site unless given written permission by the maker of this thread and/or the maker of the information that is being used.