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Groups! What a great feature on deviantART. They kicked off last year and have been a huge success. Nothing but good has come from the groups system – or has it? I can tell you that right now – under the layer of hype lies a deep, dark problem that's slowly killing our communities, unknown artists, and our ART. I'm going to tell you my own story, then explain.

I'm the founder of a large photography group here on deviantART. We've been using the groups system since the very first day they officially released. At the time of this writing, we have almost 3600 members. We've grown rapidly to become one of the largest and most successful photography groups around. As a founder, it's always interesting to see how your group is doing. It's a lot of fun to look at statistics, new members, submissions, and comments. Until now.

We had an excellent discussion in our group chat debating the following issues. Together, we came up with these issues and decided to raise them to the community through this news article.

A strong indicator of member activity in our group has always been the participation rate in our polls. When we had around 600 members, the participation rate in our polls after about one week was at around 40% - a very high number. But where are we today? We created a normal poll about one week ago. Keep in mind, we now have almost 3600 members. Our participation rate this time around? Just under 3%. 3 PERCENT! Unbelievable. I couldn't believe my eyes.

So what does this information tell us? Active participation within the group has reached an all-time low, even though we have constantly been innovating with new projects, ideas, themes, and contests. Only 3% of our members bothered to participate in the poll. What is the cause for this terrible drop in participation? Read on for my theory.

:bulletpurple: THE ISSUE
Let's take a deeper look at the groups system. What happens when someone joins a group? And, most importantly, WHY does one join a group? I'm beginning to see a trend. The number one reason for joining a group is to get artwork noticed. The number two reason is to see other great artwork. Here is where the problem comes in: People submit artwork to groups carelessly and in great amounts. People join unreasonable amounts of groups.

:bulletpurple: DEVIANTS SUFFER
I have seen images that have been submitted to over 40 groups, if not more! This, quite frankly, is unbelievable. Before the groups system, the way to get your work noticed was through watchers, journal features, and most importantly, the QUALITY of the art. However, it has now come to a point where the popularity of a work of art is defined by the number of groups it has been submitted to! Artists that DON'T submit to an unbelievable amount of groups SUFFER because they can't get their artwork to shine simply through quality. If you don't submit submit submit, you have NO chance to get your art really out there.

In short, people are USING, SPAMMING,  and EXPLOITING the groups system to get their artwork noticed. And if they don't do so, they are at a HUGE disadvantage.

:bulletpurple: GROUPS SUFFER
So what about groups like us? Groups that don't just want millions of submissions, but rather member participation in projects, contests, chats, and more? We are about community, and frankly, our community feeling has died ever since the abuse started. It feels like people simply join our group to have another check-box to hit when it comes to submitting a deviation. Why don't people see our polls and blogs when they used to in the past? Because deviants join too many groups. If someone is in 200 groups, they can't keep track of all their deviantWATCH messages any more. There's simply no way. Their inboxes get floodes with blogs, polls, and thousands of deviations. So, how can a group possibly get important information seen? This brings me to the next issue.


:bulletpurple: MORE ISSUES
Groups must abuse in order to not be abused. The only way to get a reasonable amount of people to see polls and blogs is to post a LOT of both. It has come to the point where groups create multiple blogs and polls to deliver the SAME message to members. How else can they get noticed in inboxes of people that are in 200 groups? Right. They can't. There is simply NO way.

So now, we're at a point where users spam groups to get noticed, and groups spam users to get noticed. Wonderful.


:bulletpurple: THE SOLUTION
In order to battle these issues, we must get all 3 parties involved. Namely, these are deviants, groups, and deviantART.

:bulletblack: USERS
Do not exploit and use the groups system to get your artwork noticed. Group administrators spend an UNBELIEVABLE amount of time improving the group, responding to the community, and sorting through your thousands of submissions. Please respect this. Take the time to reconsider which groups you're in. Please do not blindly submit photos to groups when uploading a deviation without even paying attention to the submission guidelines.


:bulletblack: GROUPS
You are an important part in helping solve this problem. We must make this issue known. As groups, we have the power to reach thousands of deviants and get this message seen. Show this to your communities, chime in on the discussion, raise awareness. We can't do this without the help of our community. For our own protection, we need to get this message seen.


:bulletblack: deviantART:
This is where things get difficult. The groups system is a brilliant idea that needs adjustment. DeviantART, in order to help our community, you must make some unpopular decisions. Deviants will NOT like the coming ideas.

1. Limit the amount of groups deviants can join
Currently, there is no limit. The first step would be to limit user joining to a reasonable level. My suggestion would be somewhere between 10-20 groups. There is simply no time to keep track of any more groups than this. Anyone that claims to be actively participating in 20 groups is abusing the groups system. There NEEDS to be a limit to counter these problems. Humans need to be governed.

2. Set a global limit to group submissions
The only way to prevent users from exploiting the groups system to get artwork seen is to set a reasonable limit. Do works of art REALLY need to be submitted to 50 groups in order to get reasonable exposure?  Before the group system, there was a natural selection process to decide which works get seen and which don't: QUALITY. This has changed. Even „awful“ works (even though almost all submissions deserve some merit) can be seen by thousands, as long as they are submitted to thousands of groups. Deviants NEED some sort of limit. The playing field needs to be leveled.

3. Make group management easier on the user's end
As a group „veteran“, I tried to find out which groups I am in the other day. To my surprise, it was incredibly clunky to see which groups I am a member of! I need to first have the group widget installed in my profile, and then need to click on the icons to see the groups. Why isn't there a big „My Groups“ button in the profile or the navigation? Why can't there be an organized list of groups, complete with icons, short info, and some statistics? We have something like this for the people we watch, why not for groups we are in? Why is it so cumbersome to find out which group one is a member of?



These steps, or at least some variation of them, NEED to be taken by all 3 parties in order for us to bring back our communities. I realize that the decisions that I suggested will be unpopular ones. Please, feel free to chime in with your ideas in the comments. Whether or not my suggestions are the right ones, something clearly needs to be done. The only way to solve these problems is to get them known. Therefore, I ask you to help the cause by faving this article, making blogs, journals, polls, and deviations to get this out there. Only together can we battle the abuse of the groups system. And deviantART is, after all, a community of strong-willed artists, is it not?

- David Vogt
:icondavidvogt:
Add a Comment:
 
:iconagnosticdragon:
I think groups could deal with the problem by being more selective. Some groups are pretty good at this while others are not. I have seen several groups that expressly advertise that they accept all submissions, and there are probably a lot more of these groups that I have not come across. I stay clear of these groups. I watch and join groups that are dedicated to a specific type of content, with a few exceptions. Most of the groups I am members of are political groups because this is the kind of content I primarily submit. If the group is dedicated to a subject that I am interested in but is not something I produce content of, I watch the group. I am watching one general art group, DD-Catalogue I watch it because it contains high quality content. General art groups without quality control are the low hanging fruit for dealing with this problem. If I just wanted to see random art I could browse newest and see whatever people just submitted.
Reply
:iconelanory:
Elanory Featured By Owner May 8, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Your line of arguments doesn't make any sense o.ô

So you say deviantart was a community without groups. How do groups destroy it? It's an additional feature and those who use it, get even closer. Those who are inactive wouldn't be part of a better community, if they wouldn't "abuse groups". Either they do use it or not, but that has nothing to do with the amount of groups, but with their adjustment. So groups are only positive.

My reasons to join a group:
- community with a specific topic
- discovering new topic related artwork
- making my own art more known
Yes, I want my art to get noticed, but this doesn't mean, that I submit it to tons of groups carelessly. First of all I only join groups I'm interested in. Furthermore I read the rules of every group before submitting. Also I don't spam. There's artwork I want to be seen and kind of scraps. I do submit the better art to many groups, why not? Doesn't mean I'm a bad member.

"Before the groups system, the way to get your work noticed was through watchers, journal features, and most importantly, the QUALITY of the art." Do you mean low quality art isn't worth to get noticed? DeviantArt is about sharing your art with everyone. Everyones art. Not only the best.
By the way, if I submit art to a group many people see it. But it depends on the "quality", if they fave/share/coment it or not. Also good pictures become famous like before. Other deviations being submitted to a group don't influence that. Watchers, features and quality still are important and crucial for getting noticed.

"Why don't people see our polls and blogs when they used to in the past? Because deviants join too many groups." - That's not true. They don't, because they don't want to. If they really want to take part in the comunity, they do. No matter how many groups.
And if they don't, who cares? They don't avoid a good communication, they just don't take part. And if a group founder doesn't want inactive members, he can help hisself and test who's active. I've seen that often enough.
I also lead some groups and I also care for them. I accepted the fact, that there are people who are active and communicate with each other, people who submit their work there and people who just want to see the work, because they like the topic and it's okay for me. I think we need every type of them in a group, sothat it works.

Also I've seen some artists who just want to make their pictures famous and submit their deviations to simply every group, that don't even fit the topic. But these are so rare, that I can't include them in my arguments and I don't think these are the people you're catering to.
Reply
:iconoxfrostxo:
oXFrostXo Featured By Owner Jan 30, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I run two groups, am a contributor in one, and am a member in 31 more, but I don't actively submit to any of them. I much prefer viewing and commenting on the works others submit.
Reply
:iconbatmanwithbunnyears:
BatmanWithBunnyEars Featured By Owner Dec 9, 2011   General Artist
You can still get your art noticed through quality. I recently saw a picture of a rainbow camera, submitted by a relatively unknown deviant, get 1000's of favorites without group spamming. In fact, most of the stuff on the front page isn't submitted to that many groups. The groups just give the unknown a second chance to be seen. Personally, I think somebody with the dedication to submit to that many groups (very time-consuming!) deserves the extra recognition.
Reply
:iconoctober-knights:
October-Knights Featured By Owner Jul 5, 2011  Hobbyist General Artist
got it thanks for the info =)
Reply
:iconhelice93:
helice93 Featured By Owner Apr 12, 2011  Hobbyist General Artist
I just came upon a picture that was submitted to 121 groups. Now that's a bit too much...
Reply
:icondavidvogt:
DavidVogt Featured By Owner Apr 12, 2011  Professional Photographer
Yeah, I've seen even more. There you have it. :|
Reply
:iconmikomikisomi:
MikomiKisomi Featured By Owner Mar 16, 2011  Student Digital Artist
This is very good, and I agree with it. When I first joined dA, I joined a ton of groups- after that, I still join about 1 a week. I run three groups of my own (if I had a memebership, I would run more, since I've had many requests), but some of the other groups fall between the cracks. I always am active in the groups that come through my box (I now have 100+ stacks in my inbox every night, so I am unable to ckeck the group stacks; I only check the stacks for deviants I am watching), but alot of them I never hear from for months. It's frustrating; I've had to leave about 3 groups since Janurary, but I'm still flooded. I am active in most group, but, again, I can't in others......... I did it to myself, and its really a problem. I just checked my stats- I'm now watching 254 people, deviants and groups alike. It's too much....... Yesterday I joined 5 groups............. I just left 5 groups, and de-watched one........ But it still doesn't make up.............

~MP, MK, HSF1, and Liz
Reply
:iconkobayashihisa:
KobayashiHisa Featured By Owner Jan 27, 2011
I am not a member of many groups though I do run my own group. It is really frustrating to try to run a group that is intended and meant to have a huge community involvement, but even with 40 members, only myself and like 3 others are actually doing anything. Even with a screening process for membership. I actually stopped joining groups because they either spammed my inbox, or they allowed the members to submit so much stuff daily that I was being spammed by people I don't even know with artwork that has little to do with the group theme (which is what I joined for). Very frustrating. Some limits would be good.
Reply
:iconnoxfoxarts:
noxfoxArts Featured By Owner Jan 7, 2011  Professional Digital Artist
I completely agree with this article from A to Z. I got so much spam of low-quality deviations forcing the way out in my inbox that it got me really sick. I'm the kind of person who takes time to browse among groups to check the ones I want to join - sometimes joining several similar groups to test the ones I like the best before quitting the others, and so I've seen shocking things.
Like groups advertising about the fact they accepted all deviations automatically without quality check. These are spam groups.

...Who wants to be in that group damn it!? I don't want to see the work I've spent several hours on aside a badly scanned notebook doodle. I've yet declined several groups wanting to add my works in their galleries while I was even not a member.

And the groups I liked the more are getting abused too, they were forced to accept non-related deviations in hope to get more audience because spam-groups overshines them with their trash.

We must resist all together to the abuse and make groups be home back again!
I wonder if it wouldn't be worth creating some sort of award for non-abusive groups focusing on quality and community. Members would have to offer it to the group like llama badges. They also could vote for it to be removed if the group's quality decreases.
Reply
:iconalliaxandromeda:
alliaxandromeda Featured By Owner Jan 26, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I'm a Contributor for a particular group, and that means that I supposedly have a say in what's allowed into the group's gallery, i.e. there was a vote system in place for the submissions. The rules however, very very lax; the only art we were allowed to reject was furry art, and Twilight related works.

The biggest annoyance was when I had in my inbox over 500 submissions from one person featuring either recoloured official Pokemon artwork, or pregnant cartoon characters. And we weren't allowed to reject it.
Reply
:iconnoxfoxarts:
noxfoxArts Featured By Owner Jan 26, 2011  Professional Digital Artist
Damn, I would just have rejected ALL the 500 deviations and told be member to think about everyone else in the group, from Admins to members. No one wants to see 500 pics at once, especially such things.
Also regarding anything using official material you can report it as art thievery (the faq is clear about it). If the person is nice I tend to suggest her to remove such material on her own but in abusive cases I report directly.

...May I ask what's the theme of this group though? I'm kinda puzzled by what can be accepted and especially what can be refused... (regarding furry I may understand if it's about furry fanarts of non-furry characters, but that and Twilight while Pokémon is ok???)
Reply
:iconalliaxandromeda:
alliaxandromeda Featured By Owner Jan 27, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
To be completely honest, the group itself doesn't actually have a theme. It's called 'Randomly-PIMPtastic'; I was asked by the founder to join, since we're sort of DA friends.

And yes, it doesn't really make sense, regarding the rules, I mean
Reply
:iconnoxfoxarts:
noxfoxArts Featured By Owner Jan 27, 2011  Professional Digital Artist
that sounds random indeed XD but I guess we need such things to balance... I don't know what exactly but to balance something... it relieves of some pressure when I think about it. not being serious all the time...
Reply
:iconmissmad-hatter:
MissMad-Hatter Featured By Owner Jan 1, 2011  Hobbyist Writer
I'll kinda unsure of how to respond to this, actually. I belong to about fifty groups, am the founder of four (two by adoption after a friend left DA, mind you), and help as a co-founder in another a friend just started. But, before I get slammed with spam saying I'm abusing the system, I belong to so many different groups because I belong to the South Park fandom and I joined groups based on pairings. A lot of the 'major' SP groups cater to the main pairings, but I support a lot of the minor ones, so to see and submit art about those pairings, I needed to join separate groups. I also joined based on my other interests. So, I don't belong to fifty groups of the exact same thing.

My problem, however, is in the assertion that people who belong to a lot of groups and submit their works a lot are trying to abuse the system. I am a writer. As such, barely anyone even sees my work, since DA carters to visual arts over written pieces. To add injury to insult, I also write in a dark vein of literature, which receives even less attention. Before the groups system, my writings received only a couple hundred views and maybe three favorites from friends I know in real life. Since I've been able to submit to a wide variety of groups, my novels, chapters, poems, and even fanfics are gotten a huge amount of attention. However, to even get up to ten favorites, I have to submit to mulitple groups.

So, I don't agree with you about limiting the amount of groups people are allowed to join and submit to. I don't think that's the problem. If I wasn't allowed to join fifty groups, I wouldn't be able to support or see minor fandoms I like or enjoy the attention my writing has gotten. Unlike with visual art, very few people look for writing, so its nice to have groups dedicated to the different genres I write for so I can get the attention I deserve.

Personally, I believe the problem is with the groups themselves. I think there should be a limit set by DA about how much a group is allowed to accept at one given time. As a founder, I don't allow for more then forty pictures to be submitted any one day. I even have strict policies in my largest group about how much a member is allowed to submit. The problem is the groups that submit 200 or more deviations every single day. I belong to several and its so frustrating. I have no time to go through them all. Those groups as tend to be the ones that spam me with dozens of journals and polls daily. I think that the moderators should limit submissions to twenty a day. To make sure they do, DA should step in with some sort of control feature. Its not fair that people get slammed with thousands of thumbs they can't possibly go through in a day.

However, as for group participation, it doesn't matter if there's a limit on how many groups people can join, how much they can submit, etc. People are still going to join groups simply to get their art out there. I think that's pretty much why clubs were created before groups and why groups were then created. And who can blame them? Thousands of fabulous artists and writers go unnoticed simply because the 'search' function yields too many results to actually go through. With groups, its easy to submit to an audience who already wants to see your work. But punishing people who want to get noticed by limiting the amount of groups they can join and submit to isn't fair.

Groups need to be harsher in what and how much they accept. That's the bottom line. At least to me.

But I think posting this article will hopefully prompt DA to start noticing that something needs to give. I just hope I don't have to go back to being an unnoticed writer scanning search results for minor pairing art again. The groups system is really one of the only reasons I stayed on DA.
Reply
:iconmukart:
MukArt Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2010  Professional Digital Artist
i think a good way would also be to stop letting people make thousands of groups for the same thing mebbe, or to merge them into 1. i joined a few cuz there are so many but honestly there is a god awful amount of repeat clubs. :O do we really need over 100 fantasy related clubs or video game clubs? i get a lot of messages too, mostly deviations. luckily i can delete all the deviations at once (most arent worth looking at cuz thier either stolen or half assed) but i usually read the journals. the polls though, sometimes they dont have an option i agree with or they're something stupid like "what color is your socks" and so im like "meh" and dont reply. the group spam is annoying tho i agree. i see the same image pop up like 15 times in my inbox :O
Reply
:iconladyofgaerdon:
LadyofGaerdon Featured By Owner Oct 29, 2010  Professional Writer
Well, I've read this and thought about it and I am really not convinced. Sorry, I'm just not. So group abuse is bad because people just submit to groups and don't participate in them, and therefore participation is low. Um, okay. Obviously people who don't want to participate aren't going to, no matter what restrictions are put on them. Plus, if you limit the amount of groups people can be in, THAT could possibly kill the group system, because everyone will want to join the biggest groups they can so that their art is seen by the most people, and then not only will our inboxes be even more flooded, but new, smaller groups won't even have a chance!

Especially for people who write literature, groups are the best way to get noticed. At least with visual art, it only takes a second or two to decide whether you like something - it takes much longer than that for liuterature and it is harder to figure out WHAT you are reading. So we need grouops for fantasy, for romance, for nonfiction, for realistic, sc-fi, ect.

Group limitation is wrong. Say that I'm a writer (because I am) and that I write poetry, essays and books. I COULD choose one group for all of those, but targeted groups seem to work better, so I'd need three separate groups just for that. Then let's say I could also draw (I can't, but let's pretend), so I need some place to submit those. Then say I like to draw couples sometimes. I'd like the option to submit to the couple's groups. That's at least five right there. Then, since I love photomanipulations, lets say a join a photomanip group as a contributer. That's six. Then say I have a Harry Potter obsession so I join a Harry Potter group. That's seven right there, and thats if I only do ONE group for each KIND of art! What if I want to be in a group that helps noobs. Or a group of people from California? Groups like that will die off quickly.

And yes, this community is about the art. But because of that it is very much about getting the art we make as much exposure as possible. And that means joining groups. So what if I don't vote in every poll in every group I'm in. I try to when I visit the group, at least. But you know what I do? I reply to every. single. comment, fave and devwatch I get. And I look at those people's galleries and comment. So even though I am a "group abuser" I feel I am contributing possitively to the community.

What it all comes down to is people want their art noticed and are willing to track down groups and spend time submitting in order to get it. Is this really so bad? To care passionately about our art and try hard to give it exposure? I agree that this energy should also be channeled into improving yourself, so perhaps more groups should offer critiques and help. Honestly thats one of the main reasons I'm in so many groups - for the critiques, Because I WANT to improve, but I need feedback in order to do so!

As for finding out what groups you're in, If you go to your profile, click "edit profile" and add the group widget, then once you're back on your profile, there will be a "groups" section near your devwatch list, and if you click "see all groups" a list comes up. No descriptions or anything, but still a list. Hope this can help you.
Reply
:iconladyofgaerdon:
LadyofGaerdon Featured By Owner Oct 29, 2010  Professional Writer
Btw, I'm not trying to be confrontational, I just really truly don't get why it's so bad. And I don't like that people like me are seen as killing the community when I love this community and try hard to participate positively in it.
Reply
:iconlion-feathers:
lion-feathers Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2010  Student Writer
I see your points. I don't participate in all the polls, either, but I do reply to comments, visit galleries, and make friends. However, I still tend to agree with Voigt's article. Since I started joining groups, I have certainly discovered some great artists and made contact with cool people I would otherwise never have met, but I've also logged on to find over 1000 Deviations in my Inbox, most of them literature. There are never enough hours in the day to give each work a truly respectful view, and I end up feeling guilty because I have to delete so many items without reading them.

While I like the idea of exposing my work to thousands of Deviants at a time--in theory--I suspect that those thousands are experiencing the same overload that I am. In the end, I doubt my poems are read by any more people than they would be in a much smaller group, and to that end, I'm probably going to rearrange my Groups to give priority to small ones and back away from the mega-groups.
Reply
:iconladyofgaerdon:
LadyofGaerdon Featured By Owner Nov 16, 2010  Professional Writer
Thank you very much for replying to me, and not flaming me. :) You make a good point about the advantages of small groups. But again, if you join small groups, it's nice to be able to participate in several. And I still think that limitations would lead to the death of many super-specialized or just for fun groups. At the very least, groups for things like "Central California", "Ron & Hermione lovers" and "DAMentor" should not have a limitation, or at least should have a higher limit.

I suppose I use my deviant-watch incorrectly. When I first joined DA I did so to look at photomanipulations and to be able to fav them. Any artist I really liked was added to my devwatch so that I would be able to find them again and, at my leisure, explore their galleries. Now I tend to just remember to frequently check certain artists I'm friends with, or certain groups I'm very active with, while everything stays in my devwatch until I can get to it. I think it's okay that different people use DA, and the group system, differently. I also don't think you can really force people to behave the way you want to on the internet.
Reply
:iconlion-feathers:
lion-feathers Featured By Owner Nov 19, 2010  Student Writer
I don't, as a rule, flame people.
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:iconladyofgaerdon:
LadyofGaerdon Featured By Owner Nov 24, 2010  Professional Writer
Oh, I wasn't suggesting you did or would! I was just glad that I got a response to my comment that wasn't rude or mean or hateful. That's all.
Reply
:iconno-soap-was-harmed:
no-soap-was-harmed Featured By Owner Oct 28, 2010
What a sorely needed, well communicated news article.
Well done mate :)
Reply
:icondarkwolf127:
darkwolf127 Featured By Owner Oct 25, 2010  Hobbyist Writer
i agree all the way, expecilly about people submitting stuff to like a hundred groups
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:iconshade-the-echidna911:
wow just wow.
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:iconkiwipikachu:
KiwiPikachu Featured By Owner Oct 21, 2010  Student Digital Artist
Agreed I must admit that I've been joining groups just because I can and because of the fact its mostly the things I enjoy darwing the most may it be Pokemon to wolves it dosn't matter but what your saying is ture DA needs to put a limit not only does it help people understand the fact that they need to lrean slef contorl but it get's them sickting to at least a view gruops that they would most likly commute to.

Me being one of them I must sadly say.
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:iconmidoriiblue:
MidoriiBlue Featured By Owner Oct 20, 2010  Hobbyist Writer
In general I agree with this article...however, concluding that the poll participation equals the group participation is not founded. Personally I ignore all polls at this point as so many DA members abuse this feature as well.
I myself do not participate in all the groups I am part of and would not mind eliminating many of them as all they do is crowd my message box and motivate me to hit "delete all."
Thank you for writing this article!!
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:iconlion-feathers:
lion-feathers Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2010  Student Writer
Is there currently a way to resign from a group? (Without offending anyone??)
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:iconmidoriiblue:
MidoriiBlue Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2010  Hobbyist Writer
To truly leave a group you can do so from their front page. As far as offending anyone, the admins can see when you leave, but I don't think it is too big of a deal myself. There are many factors that could be going on for any one person to leave a group.

Now if I saw a flux of people leaving the group I would wonder how the group was not living up to the members' expectations; being offended is not even in the formula.

As a group founder, I would not mind a note sharing any comments a leaving member may have so I could take those things into consideration for the future of the group.
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:iconlion-feathers:
lion-feathers Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2010  Student Writer
Good to know.
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:iconalecwolfe:
AlecWolfe Featured By Owner Oct 19, 2010
I think you have said this very well. A while ago a founder for an affiliate group of mine sent me a note suggesting something rather similar - and pointing out that people do in fact exploit groups. We limited the number of groups a piece could be in at the time of submission to us because of this.

I have just send a remind blog to my group about this, linking to this news article. And it is also linked on our main page as an explanation why we 'reserve the right to reject deviations found in more than a dozen other groups'. Thank you!
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:iconravisk:
Ravisk Featured By Owner Oct 19, 2010  Student Photographer
Why the fuck I'm not surprised, meh, it's the same with Facebook putting a cap of groups that you can join.
deviantART muro drawingComment Drawing
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:iconshellshe:
Shellshe Featured By Owner Oct 19, 2010  Student General Artist
DeviantArt has become crowded and unruley.
I'm in...I don't know, maybe six groups. Most of them though, maybe two, hardly ever have anything submitted to it because the rules are so strict it's almost not worth being a part of the group.
And the other four...Well geez.
I check my mail when I log in first thing because there's ALWAYS over a thousand entries being added to it. And as soon as I get through reading all of it, which I never really can, I have 40 more entries to go through. About ten minutes later and I'm back to a hundred. I'm drowning and I've gone from being a writer and a reader to being a publisher, who can only read the first few sentences. GOOD art, not to say that all art isn't good, but the really good stuff never get's the attention that it deserves because everything is so cluttered. There's to much to read and not enough time.

----Cluttered Author
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:iconlion-feathers:
lion-feathers Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2010  Student Writer
I was thinking the same thing a few minutes ago, that I feel much more like an editor than a writer when I log on these days. There's this huge slush pile in my Inbox, and I've gone and committed to at least token participation in these groups, so I wind up scanning the first few lines of each Deviation and, if it fails to "catch" me by the end of the thumbnail, I hit Delete. I don't like to have to do this, but as you say, giving the other writers the attention they deserve would mean neglecting my own work--which completely defeats the purpose of being on DA.

I see that you're a member of GetWatchers. How has that worked out? Is it worthwhile, do you think, or just more clutter?
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:iconshellshe:
Shellshe Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2010  Student General Artist
Exactly! I've still cut down my groups though and I try to read everything before deleting it, but it just seems impossible.

GetWatchers? I love that place. I've met so many people and read so many things.
It's not really that your watching them. Your put into a group and then when you go on the page and click to view a random peice of art, someone else is sent to see your art.
You don't get any clutter. Just page views, favorites, watchers. One of my favorite stories was written by someone I found on Get Watchers.
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:iconlion-feathers:
lion-feathers Featured By Owner Nov 9, 2010  Student Writer
So it's really a completely different way of having a group. Sounds interesting.
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:iconshellshe:
Shellshe Featured By Owner Nov 10, 2010  Student General Artist
It is. I love it.
Because you can look at art on your own time and fill a checklist out for what you really want to read of view so you don't just get a load of stuff you probably won't even look at.
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:iconlion-feathers:
lion-feathers Featured By Owner Nov 14, 2010  Student Writer
Good to know. Thanks.
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:iconrecklessmurder:
RecklessMurder Featured By Owner Oct 19, 2010
Maybe you can be the admin of the entire deviantART.

deviantART muro drawingComment Drawing
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:iconsings4life:
sings4life Featured By Owner Oct 19, 2010
I'm only part of one group, but my inbox gets an average of 50 deviations per DAY from this one group. People seem to be submitting their whole galleries to the group, so I think there should be a limit on how many deviations can be submitted by any one person to any one group
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:iconinuyashagirl82:
inuyashagirl82 Featured By Owner Oct 16, 2010  Hobbyist Digital Artist
you could have your group be smaller and kick out the people participate in polls blogs and such. basically keep the people tha you feel really care about the group.
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:iconinuyashagirl82:
inuyashagirl82 Featured By Owner Oct 16, 2010  Hobbyist Digital Artist
i meant kick out the people who dont participate in polls, blogs, projects and such.
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:iconmirz123:
Mirz123 Featured By Owner Oct 11, 2010
My problem with groups is that I feel that there is not enough "filtering." Groups should have a theme and it should be narrow...and adhered to. So many group leaders want their groups to be popular and don't want to hurt a deviant's feelings by rejecting their work, so everything and anything ends up in there. As a result, in most communities you have 10 groups with the same focus and same deviations being submitted.

Of course, a huge subset of this whole thing is the willy-nilly formation of groups by deviants. It has helped breed many of the problems you outline in your article. But, that's another problem in itself.
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:iconlion-feathers:
lion-feathers Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2010  Student Writer
Good point. How many dozens of general literature groups are out there? How can I decide which one(s) may be worth joining? Narrower themes would be helpful. It would be great to know that my work is going out to an audience that might really be interested, and it would also be great to have my Inbox filled with works I might really want to see or read.
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:iconmirz123:
Mirz123 Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2010
We have a problem with that in the emoticonist community. There have to be a dozen, non-descript groups. They have nothing to offer specifically, so you have no idea which to watch. Sadly, because of the glut, some of the more dedicated groups don't get watchers because people are afraid they are more of the same.
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:icondazza1008:
dazza1008 Featured By Owner Oct 8, 2010
Overall, I do agree with this tone. It's a pain to have to see the same image over and over again in my inbox.

But I want to qualify some things - groups existed before the groups system came in. They were a pain to run, they were run as individual accounts, and so many died. What you are talking about - group spamming - is probably a function of the fact that it's much easier to submit to and maintain groups, therefore there are more groups alive and more groups to which we can submit.

I don't believe that deviants should be limited in the number of groups they join, because if they can't submit to that group, it doesn't matter if they've joined or not. Plus the more members a group has, the higher ranking it is (the deviant group search function can search according to numbers of members) -----> limiting the number of groups a particular deviation can be submitted to is an interesting idea, but again, I think the smaller groups would suffer. But maybe that's a good thing if we don't want tons of groups that serve the same purpose! :lol: (I don't know - sometimes bigger groups = bigger inbox flow)

And if you go to your "My friends" page (click the down arrow next to the deviantart logo, then it's under "my account" ) then you can scroll down and any groups you've joined will have a hash mark # at the beginning of the name.
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:iconlion-feathers:
lion-feathers Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2010  Student Writer
Maybe it's part of the problem that DA sees bigger as better.
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:iconzabuka-art:
zabuka-art Featured By Owner Oct 7, 2010  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I think the rule does not account for all the people that is only by contemplating the art of others, which are many. Besides the attempted manipulation 3% exaggerating the numbers can not be taken as a real value applies to all out from a single polls. But overall I am in tune with article
deviantART muro drawingComment Drawing
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:iconfall-llen:
fall-llen Featured By Owner Oct 7, 2010   Photographer
deviant is going to facebook direction ^^
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:iconroderich:
Roderich Featured By Owner Oct 6, 2010  Professional Photographer
Honestly. Is it not for some part about ART here? (for this part about photography)
Yes and Art can be much, but I do not think that everylike picture or shot that is taken, and as some new members do, pulling one after one into dA is that good and that you could tell that this would be Art. For me Art requires some sort of quality (Vision, Originality, Technique, Impact, Creativity).
And yes we have a community here. But I think we should remember that it is also about Art. And nobody can seriously be of the opinion that every snapshot you do is Art (and as some do upload here). With that i do not require a top level of quality, but to some minimum level. And that would too would solve some of the problems here!
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