Room Owner's Perspective

By Blitzamirin and Zodiax. Art by Bummer.
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Noctowl and several birds on a high wire


What are Room Owners? Room Owners are these people with a huge responsibility. They are the top room-specific rank on PS!, and you can find them by looking for users at the top of the list represented by a number sign, or, if you want a more current name, a hashtag (#). So what do Room Owners do? They need to make important decisions regarding their rooms, and they always have the final say when it comes to these decisions. Room Owners take their rooms seriously and respect everyone's opinions when it comes to changes, so if you have an idea, feel free to message one of them!

Userbase of the Room

The userbase is one of the more important parts of all rooms on PS!, as every room needs one. They may not be familiar with what Room Owners do for their rooms and they may be confused at first glance, but with time and dedication to the room, they will realize why the Room Owners have their position.

The first thing that Room Owners need to have is a clear understanding of the users who are involved in their community, as they should present themselves in a positive light. These involved users range from the room regulars who chat every day, to the spammers; this is why chat activity is an important detail that Room Owners must use to their advantage. The ability to set modchat to any rank up to Room Owner is useful, as the ROs may post important announcements pertaining to the room, or they may simply use it when the chat becomes hectic. Room Owners also show their knowledge and commitment to the room by hosting events and scripted tours, or by utilizing features that involve a bot coded specifically for the room. They may also support their room by drawing activity to a subforum on Smogon. Room Owners also serve as very efficient mentors, as they know the ins and outs of their rooms and can update the room intro, which serves as a general help hub, in order to keep users informed.

As previously mentioned, the room intro, which is the first thing that users will see in the room, serves as a general FAQ that will guide them through the community and is kept up to date by the Room Owners. For example, a room intro that looks like this will draw people in. Why? It has everything that it needs to succeed: the name and description of the room, captivating art to catch the users' eyes, and helpful links for getting settled in the chat.

As time passes, Room Owners will also focus on improving the general purpose of the room, and what better way to do it than to have everyone take part in it?

Behind the Scenes

For starters, the first thing that Room Owners do is to make sure that their rooms are being run effectively and to the best of their and their staff's abilities. They know how to control their rooms well; if they didn't, they wouldn't be where they are.

How a Room Owner chooses to run their room is important. All Room Owners run their rooms in multiple ways. Some like to portray a more relaxed style when it comes to running the room, casually participating in the chat and making that sure users are in a comfortable environment. Some like to get more involved with the room behind the scenes by discussing policy; the users will see the effects of this reflected in changes in the room's structure.

They also have a set of responsibilities that the normal user may not see, as all Room Owners are involved with policy decisions. For users, promotions and demotions involve heavy discussion that takes into account the nominee's chat quality, general attitude, and other factors (such as behavior in other rooms and, in the case of staff, policy input). Room Owners may also create a website specifically tailored for the room, which can serve as a more detailed room intro, provide a staff list, and give particulars on room events. Room Owners will also always ask their users' and staff's opinions when it comes to decisions, as feedback is greatly appreciated for the betterment of the room.


ROs also maintain contact outside of the rooms that they own and even PS! itself. Some Room Owners keep in touch with Skype or staff conversations on the Smogon Forums, and this helps to keep a unified staff team.

Skype can be used as a quick means of establishing communication and easily discussing anything urgent that crops up. Planning big events to keep the room fresh usually takes place there. Staff meetings may also be held there, and ROs can call upon staff to watch their room if they need to leave. As Skype is a real-time chat application, it has various advantages over other methods of communication: everyone who's active can weigh in at once, problems can be solved within minutes, and efficient solutions to a problem can be offered from multiple perspectives. Smogon conversations can be used to make sure that everyone is up to date and that everyone can check or provide input at their own pace.

At the end of the day, the Room Owners are the ones who have the final call and get to decide what is done in the room. Through communication, ROs have enough input from the community to ensure that things go well with everyone, and even though there might be some controversial decisions, they are looking out for the best in each of their rooms.


Despite the different mentalities and ways of approaching their rooms, the Room Owners still work to stay in touch with their rooms, putting huge emphasis on the community's thoughts in order to achieve success for their rooms and for themselves. For those who have not been a Room Owner before, it's a hard but rewarding job. If you do become a Room Owner in the future, good luck, and may the odds be ever in your favor.

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