What are the Theoryland ranks and raisings (promotions)?
Years ago we decided to reward dedicated users who consistently were involved with Theoryland. Most of the instant activity occurred within the Theoryland Message Board. Users developed unique personas, and created a role-playing atmosphere to interact with other members. Before we ever assigned names, older and well-known posters were doing it themselves. The title Youngling became a popular way to establish a distinction of new and inexperienced Wheel of Time enthusiast visitors to Theoryland. Playing off that title, we created a system of levels that would distinguish members by the quality of input, and quantity of time devoted to Theoryland and most especially the Message Board.
Below are the four ranking levels that we use on Theoryland along with an explanation as to what they signify. A typical question from every Youngling is, "how long until I get to move up?" So we have included an explanation of our raising system.
Note: These rules and explanations are descriptive of how the process works, but do not guarantee that any user will be raised. That final decision is left up to the discretion of our team, which means show some respect for those who rank above you.
Youngling (0 - 6 months): The title Youngling merely marks you as a new Theoryland member. You could be 65 or 14, no one knows or cares how old you are or what you have experienced in your life. You may have read the Wheel of Time books 30 times. Maybe you even memorized the whole thing and you have spent the last four years as a pillar of another Wheel of Time community. This title does not seek to diminish your sense of understanding, nor your sense of who you are as a person. But you will be referred to as a Youngling. Members will seek you out hoping you will join them in their faction, or nominate their latest theory for an award. We like new members and we appreciate Younglings who stick around and participate in the Theoryland experience.
Elder (6 - 12 months): The title of Elder marks you as a second level Theoryland member, someone who has spent a reasonable amount of time developing himself or herself as a serious contributor to our site in a variety of formats (submitting theories, joining factions, making predictions, and posting on the message boards). Becoming an elder brings with it some new privileges. Most importantly, you can now champion your own faction. This is important because championing factions is part of the qualifications of becoming an Ancient. An Elder is expected to continue to support Theoryland and help Younglings adjust to our unique style.
Ancient (12 - 24 months): Ancients are highly respected on Theoryland. They are well known posters, usually have developed creative theories, or constantly add new twists to old ideas. Ancients are users who have devoted so much time to Theoryland that they have practically become their own institution; so much so, if they decide to depart our ranks, it is noticed and mourned. Ancients have the pleasure of having their own "working space" within the Chronicles of Theoryland. Here they are allowed to store and develop new ideas and theories. Only a small percentage of Younglings make it this far.
Hero of the Horn (24 + months): Heroes are a select group of members that have been with Theoryland since its conception in early 1998. They are rarely seen around the boards, except to defend their theories or give "special" welcoming messages to first time posters. Their names and stories remembered fondly in prose written after the Wars of Theoryland. But there are new Heroes are on the horizon ready to write a their own chapter in this new Age, the Fourth Age, of Theoryland.
Explanation of Raisings:
Introduction: An important part of feeling that your contributions matter to us is our ability to reward it fairly. Raisings have caused many problems in the past. Some posters felt that since they had lived a long experienced life that the name of Youngling was demeaning and that they deserved special respect from other members. Some posters have written strangely hilarious pleas to not be overlooked. And in some cases we were at fault because raisings were not orderly and consistently handled. Attempting to resolve some, if not most, of these issues we have redesigned Theoryland, automating its features, in order to be able to fully track the individual input of each member. We will know when you started, what you have submitted, and the quality of your contributions. This enables us to more quickly and regularly make raisings. Raisings occur at the beginning of every month and are announced under News on the homepage. If you have any additional questions after reading the explanation of raisings below, please use the contact link in the left hand navigation bar to send us your comments.
Raising Younglings to Elders:
As you can see above, the normal period that a member will remain a Youngling is between 0-6 months. This may change depending on how often you sign-in and use Theoryland (for example: if you sign up and then do no visit the site for 6 months, you will NOT be automatically raised as an Elder).
If you are not raised after six months you may petition us for an explanation as to what requirement you lack and how you can fulfill it to be raised to Elder status. Content submitted by Elders is taken more seriously, and becoming an Elder enables you to champion factions, adding another level of control and interactivity to your Theoryland experience.
Raising Elders to Ancients:
The normal period of time that you will hold Elder status before you will be considered for raising is somewhere between 6 - 12 months. Like being raised to an Elder, the raising to Ancient status is a function of demonstrable participation, quality content, timed "knowledge" test, and one new qualification. You must champion a Faction, gain five members, and one of those must be an Ancient (NOTE: In order to champion a faction you must be a premium member. You need access to your personal administration site in order to run your faction. If you are not a premium member at this time, you may upgrade your account and receive instant access to your personal administration site and all other member benefits we offer). Unlike the raising from Youngling status, to be considered for raising, you must send us a petition for raising from the special contact form in your personal administration area labeled, "member contact." Please do not petition us if you do not meet the time requirements as stipulated above. You will be notified by email.
Raising Ancients to Heroes of the Horn:
If you have endured this long, then you truly are a special part of the Theoryland community. We value your input and hard work as an Ancient. Being raised to Hero status is somewhat less involved than the previous two levels. Heroes are those who commit at least 24 - 36 months at Theoryland. Most likely you became an Elder after 6 - 9 months, then an Ancient after 12 - 18 months, and now you are wondering what else there can be that you haven't experienced. Ancients must meet the previous requirements of dedication to Theoryland. Then they must receive a recommendation from two Heroes and the Lord of the Board, Tamyrlin. Those recommendations should be sent from each Hero to firstname.lastname@example.org. After receiving the recommendations, Tamyrlin will perform a review of your content, and make a decision. You will be notified by email. You may apply twice a year, in May and in November and Raisings for Heroes will occur in June and December.
As many of you know, these rules have evolved and will continue to evolve. We are not trying to make it extremely difficult, but we do want to challenge our users to be real participants in the site and not just part-time lurkers (although we appreciate you too). If you feel like you are being over-looked please contact us and let us know. We will be happy to review your status.
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