Phew, this is going to be a long one.
Admin isn't necessarily all that special of a role. It is quite literally just a moderator that is trusted more. The only difference between moderator and admin is a the title, a few commands, and the ability to permanent ban. Nothing else. I can see why it may mean a lot to others, there really is no reason to feel disappointed for not being admin in my opinion, it's only a title.
The probationary moderator role is used for users who we are overall unsure of giving full moderator, usually because we don't know how they'll handle the position or if they can use their powers properly. Probationary moderator is a way for a user to get their foot in the door, but also allows us to see how they are as a staff member. While I usually dislike giving previous staff members probationary moderator, certain actions a user has done in the past can lead to us speculating if they're still able to handle powers as well, which is why they may be put into probationary moderator. The only difference between probationary moderator and normal moderator is just a few "fun" commands, they still get access to kick, ban, gag, silence, mute, and slay. Probationary moderators are still treated as full moderators, and usually go to full within 1-2 promo/demos.
When it comes to mod/admin, it usually is just a majority for those promotions, unless one of us is very strongly against a user getting promoted for whatever reason. When it comes to DM+ promotions I believe everyone has to agree, as it is a user we will be working with for a while. We do take the word of other staff members into account, if we got a lot of people saying "hey, this user should be promoted" we'll take a look and see if they should.
I cannot agree with this. Personal opinions and bias against a user should be kept to ones self as it can lead to some pretty bad decision making. Personally when I make a decision on staff members, I keep my personal bias from interfering with if I think they're a good staff member or not. While I do believe some opinions do belong in making decisions on who should be staff, like a persons past experiences with a user, it should only be taken with a small grain of salt.
I myself have tried to stray away from this kind of decision making, but unfortunately if I do not know a person I cannot make a good decision on them. Hardly ever do I see a user trying to contact me or other users trying to contact me about someone else. The most I see anymore is someone mentioning in the promo/demo that "Oh someone suggested that a user should be promoted" which is fine and all, but I cannot personally give a good opinion on who that user is if I have no experience with them. While I can blame some of this on myself, since there are just some servers I do not personally like playing on, I do wish people would make more of an effort to come talk to me.
When it comes to recording evidence, it takes a pretty keen eye to know when the right time is. Usually if I'm suspicious against a user or if the user had said one thing out of line already, I go ahead and start recording. While it isn't necessarily the most concrete way of gathering evidence, it works most of the time. The reason why we cannot take the words of others is because of a "bandwagony mentality". All it takes is one user to take something completely out of context, tell their friends, and the next thing you know its a mess. While I've learned from past mistakes as to why you simply should not simply take someones word on a matter, I can see why it may look silly from the outside looking in. Also if someone did say something on the servers that you feel was pretty bad, please remember we do have the rank website which is a great place for gathering evidence.
There should be none of this happening in my opinion. I usually try to step back from a situation of another staff member is already handling it, but if its obviously a situation they cannot handle like if there's a group of people causing the problem, I do try to help the staff member out. As for "rubbing ranks in their face" I've not experienced this personally but if I do see it I will talk to the staff member in question. There should be no reason why some staff should be treated differently than any other staff and to do so is just going to make us look bad as a whole, lets try to treat everyone as our equal.
When it comes to adding stuff to the servers, I usually only add maps without asking people as seeing peoples first hand experience with a map lets me better see if it should stay or not. When it comes to plugins I do ask around a bit as those can have a bigger effect on game play. While I do believe that peoples personal interests should be taken into account, I also do believe people should realize that everyone has differentiating opinions on maps/plugins/ect. That's why we make forum polls to remove maps/make huge changes to a server, so we can see how everyone feels about those.
While I do believe it make seem like we're being unfair or biased at times, I can assure you we try not to be. We're only human, not every decision we make is perfect. There's no way we'll know how some decisions will effect others until it's already made. Sorry you didn't get the promotion you wanted and that you felt treated unfairly but please keep in mind, we try to give everyone a fair chance. I hope I worded this in a way that does not seem aggressive or mean, I'm not the best at choosing the right words sometimes. I do hope you did not blame your fellow staff for any of this, it's not their fault. The only people you should blame is us, the higher ups, for anything you've felt as unfair.