Emily is Now an Admin

Started by Luca, January 10, 2020, 02:49:08 PM

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Emily had the misfortune to arrive on this site in a time of a lot of uncomfortable conflict and community uncertainty. She registered just in time to get hit with a sack of bricks in terms of responsibilities and cultural obligations she knew nothing about. Similarly, CalRef wasn't much more ready to receive a new person in times of crisis than she was to be in one.

During the turbulent period of 2017, a lot of people shifted positions and took on roles that they weren't ready for because the times demanded it. That includes myself. There is nothing that we can do about anything that's already happened, having done the best we could, and it makes no sense to hold onto insecurities of the past when you could move forward instead.

Emily has been through a nauseating amount of old messages, RP posts and chat logs. She's listened to me recount CalRef history in far more excruciating detail than should be remembered, and grown substantially in character over the last few years. It's my opinion that she's become an embodiment of the site and of the community, with care and interest to carry it on for the years to come.

Emily is now an administrator.


To sort of re-emphasise what you were saying earlier, I was in no way ready to be a CalRef admin when I was first made one. I had a lot of personal issues I needed to work out, and an intense lack of self-confidence that I was sometimes good at hiding. I had run a few sites in the past, but the pet project I had poured my entire heart into had died only a month or two prior and I was still feeling the loss of that; I'm still feeling the loss of that to a lesser extent. I had some very specific leadership skills, but not the ones that this type of site needed.

What I'm trying to get at is that I made a lot of mistakes the last time around. I would lose my temper, or get baited into arguments, or go too far when trying to help someone else. I desperately wanted CalRef to work, but it wasn't so much out of a love of the community and what it stood for at that time as it was a need to fill the hole that had been left in me with the death of my place. Unfortunately, if you go into something with the wrong motivations, it's very easy to fail at it. Between failing to make Shrine a safe place for literally anyone who was on it and the Sins debaucle, I felt like a massive failure. I felt like I had let the team down, and worse that I had hurt people I cared very much about.

The last year has been good for me. I worked with more limitations, and that allowed me to stretch out and experiment with what my role within the site could be, not just what it had to be by the simplest definition of a station. I was good at making people feel welcome, and making people feel like they had someone who cared about them. And I have always loved writing more than any other hobby, so the RP section was a given. I really enjoyed taking projects and running with them, but it took a long time for me to think up projects that weren't Sinking Lure-adjacent. Not everything could be fixed with a new fictional plot of a new NPC jumping into the mix. We had to expand and start getting creative about how we acted, so that more people would be interested in sticking around.

Which brings us to this. It makes me really happy to be trusted with this again. I'm happy that I can trust myself with this position now. Last time I was given this position, I was afraid of letting everyone else down. This time, I don't feel that same level of anxiety. I know CalRef. I'm a Refugi, which took some time and some education but did eventually happen. And I have ideas about how I can contribute toward making this association of people an actual community. I've really come around to liking you all and wanting you to be here. Even though so much has been lost, we have a lot left to mine out of what we've found. That's not to say we're at the break of some new dawn; community is a tricky thing to bring about. It requires everyone to be on board. If a site or group has forty people, but only three of them post, that looks bad to anyone else who might be thinking of joining. It's a ruin, not a home. And very few of the people in this group really care about it in the way that old online communities cared about one another.

The internet is in a dark place at the moment. There's so little empathy or comraderie. Everyone seems so detached from everything around them. But I'm an optimist; I look at this problem and I see an opportunity to teach people about being friends with one another, to bring people together as a community and make people feel like the old people among us felt when we first found a forum of like-minded people we would eventually become friends with. I want us to be a group that is always talking to one another, a group who likes one another and trusts each other with our problems. If there's something that's bothering us in our real lives, I want us to all feel like we have this safe place to come and talk about those things, where we'll work through it together. I want us to be friends. And I think we can do it.

Thanks for listening to my TED Talk friendos, let's make the internet a better place~