So you are interested in moderating a writing stream? Excellent, you’re in the right place!
Our volunteer moderators are essential in making sure our events run smoothly and well for everyone. They support our streamers, keep the streams safe for everyone, report the statistics back for the event, and coordinate stream changeovers.
What You Are Signing Up For
What’s required of everyone who signs up to moderate:
- Moderate your assigned writing stream for 2 hours
- Connect with your streamer on Discord at least 15 minutes before your assigned stream is due to start
- Stick to the schedule and let the admins know ASAP if you can’t make your moderation slot for any reason
- Interact in the Twitch stream chat
- Abide by:
- OHHOW Code of Conduct
- Twitch’s Community Guidelines
- NaNoWriMo Code of Conduct (for NaNo-adjacent events only)
- Coordinate the hand-offs between streamers on either side of your slot
- Coordinate with OHHOW admins and other mods to help things run smoothly
- Take emergency measures when required
Each stream has 2 moderator slots available: Word Count Mod and Chat Engagement Mod. Their specific duties are listed below. This is to ensure that the tasks are covered easily, though mods are welcome to help each other out!
Word Count Mods must:
- Record writing statistics for your assigned stream
- Report statistics for sprints in the Twitch chat
- Check Discord for viewers unable to report word counts on Twitch and include their statistics
Chat Engagement Mods must:
- Enforce the applicable codes of conduct and community guidelines in the chat
- Remove inappropriate posts
- Ban bots
- Engage in the chat with the streamer and other viewers
- Actively encourage positive participation
See also the Essentials sections:
- Getting Started covers what you must do in advance of the event
- Moderation in Action covers how to do the mod tasks
You don’t have to:
- Stream anything yourself
How to Sign Up
To sign up for a moderator slot, look for when the volunteer signups are open for the next event! Our schedule shows when the signups are open, and keep an eye on the announcements in the OHHOW Discord server for the link.
You will also be able to pick which streaming slot (or slots!) you want. Once we have all the volunteers signed up, the schedule is opened up for everyone to select a slot that suits their time zone and schedule. Keep an eye out on our Discord server for notifications so you know when to jump in and grab your slot.
Stream Timing and Requirements
Before the event, you need to:
- Find out who your streamers are and follow them on Twitch (don’t worry, you can remove them after the event is over if you wish!)
- Make sure your streamers have added you as a mod
- Find out who is streaming directly before and after your slot, and who is moderating those slots. You will need this to coordinate the hand-offs (raids) at the start and end of your slot.
Here’s how it runs on the day:
- 15 minutes before your moderation slot starts, in the #green-room channel on Discord:
- Make contact with your streamer
- Make contact with the mod of the current stream (directly before your slot)
- 10 minutes before your moderation slot starts:
- Hop into your streamer’s Twitch channel and confirm with them that they are ready to go. They should be streaming at this point. If they are not streaming, they are not ready.
- Confirm with the mod of the current stream when your streamer is ready for raid
- If we have not heard from you on Discord at least 10 minutes before your stream, the admins will assume you have decided not to fulfil your mod duties
- Stream start time: the previous streamer will raid everyone over into your streamer’s channel. Welcome them and get rolling!
- During stream:
- Record writing statistics for sprints
- Moderate and support chat
- 15 minutes before your moderation slot ends: make contact with the mod of the next stream in the #green-room channel on Discord
- 10 minutes before your moderation slot ends:
- Coordinate with the mod of the next stream to establish when the next streamer is ready to be raided to (via Discord)
- Update your streamer
- Stream end time: (Word Count Mod) ensure the spreadsheet is complete with the totals for the stream you moderated
Also check what you signed up for, so you know what’s expected of you.
Getting Started: Essentials
Never moderated a Twitch stream as part of an OHHOW event before? Here’s what you need to do to get yourself set up:
Ensure you are familiar with:
- OHHOW Code of Conduct
- NaNoWriMo Code of Conduct for events adjacent to NaNoWriMo challenges
- Twitch Community Guidelines
- Who you are moderating for
- The schedule of streams, particularly who is streaming and moderating directly before and after your slot
To be ready to moderate for the event, ensure you have a Twitch account set up, if you don't already.
Set up your Mod View in Twitch, so you have the moderating tools easily at hand.
Alternatively, you can turn on Mod Icons in chat. These enable you to quickly delete a message if you don't want to use the full Mod View.
Make sure your streamers have set you as a mod in good time before the event. To do this:
- Ensure you are following your streamers:
- Go to their Twitch link (you can find it in the #twitch-follows channel on the Discord server or on the Schedule)
- Click the Follow button
- Go to the mod check page.
- If a streamer doesn’t appear in the list, contact them and ask them to add you. Make sure you give them your Twitch account name.
Moderation in Action: Essentials
Here’s what you need to know about being a moderator for your slot:
Things can happen to trip up a smooth streaming experience, and our moderators are there to help keep things running when something goes wrong.
If your streamer has trouble at any point during their time slot, you are expected to provide emergency support to help the streamer and the viewers. This means:
- Contacting the on-duty admin to let them know what’s going on.
- Communicating with the streamer to establish the situation and how soon the stream can get up and running.
- Stepping in to the Twitch chat and engaging with the viewers. Get some conversation going to fill the gap and give the streamer some space to fix the issue.
- Running a sprint to keep things moving while the streamer fixes the issue. This is really helpful if it may be more than a couple of minutes before the stream can get back online.
In extreme cases, we may need to ask a backup streamer to step into the gap. Work with the on-duty admin to coordinate this and smooth things along as much as possible.
For each event, we keep a record of how much writing was done. This can vary between events, so check the spreadsheets provided for the event so you know what and how to track. The word count moderator for the stream tracks the statistics for each sprint.
Each streaming slot has its own spreadsheet, so check your slot number on the schedule. You find the link to your slot’s spreadsheet in the #tracker-links channel on Discord or on the Moderating Schedule.
Each time your streamer finishes a sprint, the streamer and viewers will post/say how much they have written. You may need to nudge people to report their progress.
Record this information in the tracking spreadsheet:
- Enter individual word counts or editing times in the columns on the right. The totals for the sprint are calculated for you in Column E (#3 on the diagram below).
- Put the totals for the sprint in the columns on the left (B and C) when everyone has reported their progress.
- The totals section in the middle auto-updates (Columns D and E); do not change these.
At the end of the stream, ensure your spreadsheet has all of the totals for the stream in columns B and C.
Access the Mod View in Twitch by clicking on the sword icon.
If you see something inappropriate or violating the Code of Conduct:
- First instance: remove the comment and give the person a gentle warning in the chat
- Second instance: remove the comment, give warning, and mute the person for 10 mins
- Third instance: remove the comment and ban the user
If you see an obvious bot in the chat, remove its comment and ban it immediately.
If you’re unsure about something someone has posted, check with the on-duty Admin via Discord in the #green-room channel.
Being a moderator isn’t only about making sure the chat is appropriate; you also help to keep the chat moving and encourage people to be engaged.
Things you can do to support the chat:
- Be involved as a writer! Answer questions, get involved in the discussion.
- Welcome newcomers to the stream when they join.
- Ask questions to help the chat keep flowing.
- Respond to others in the chat!
Tips and Suggestions
- Check the schedule often and stay connected in case there are changes
- Get your spreadsheet set up early, so you’re ready to go on the day
- Set an alarm for when you need to put your mod hat on! (15 minutes before your mod slot starts)
- Have a list of questions to help keep things moving
Moderation in Action: Extras
Here are some optional extras you can also do:
You are there to help the stream run smoothly, so keep an eye on your streamer to make sure they’re okay. They are probably too busy to look at private messages (and it’s often best not to distract them if you don’t have to), so try to watch and judge for yourself.
Things to look out for:
- Problems getting set up and running. Work with the streamer to get the stream running smoothly as best you can. You may need to do some emergency measures to keep things moving.
- Quiet moments in the stream (that are not sprints!). Some writers run out of things to say, or struggle at times, particularly if they are new to streaming. Think about asking questions to help get them chatting again.