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SoylentNews is people

posted by NCommander on Tuesday April 01 2014, @05:00PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the this-feature-maybe-a-nag dept.
Assuming everything went well with our upgrade (and thus we're running the new and shiny slashcode 14.04), you might have noticed a new bar at the top of the page which looks like this: "SoylentNews is powered by your submissions, so send in your scoop. Only 13 submissions in the queue."

This is our cue to the community that the queue is running low, and acts as a request to "please submit your stories if you want to keep the flow of news coming." We've previously had to run stories asking for submissions, so this will prevent us from having to spam the index for help. A lot of you left good comments in the previous "need stories" post, so I'm going to take take a moment and address that.
In the comments on our last plea, two things were identified. First, too many moderators can limit community involvement due to moderate^post. I've gotten tons of good feedback already (and I ask you guys to keep it coming), and I'll have a writeup of what we're doing based on that feedback soon.

The second one was, in my opinion, a more serious failing on our part; specifically that we don't communicate on why a story is rejected. This is a side-effect of simply not having a way to send a notification to a submitter short of an editor going to a user's profile, getting their email, and sending them mail. That being said, I promised you guys transparency, and we're going to deliver. The other site often frequently worked in a void, and while Firehose let everyone see the submission queue, it didn't provide any insight on what does (or doesn't) make it onto the main page.

We don't have it now, but we will implement a way for editors to easily communicate about rejections to submitters via the messaging feature on the site. I've flagged this as critical for the 14.06 release, but I hope to get it backported and live before then. Until then, please bear with us. I've asked the editorial team to send messages to the email addresses included in submissions (or the email on a user's profile) so we can communicate why we're rejecting a story.

mrcoolbp adds: Please include an email in your submission if you'd like to receive feedback in the case that the submission is rejected until we can implement a better solution.

Related Stories

Soylent News Needs You 85 comments

All of the trend lines on this site are positive except one: story submissions. After an initial surge, they have been gradually declining despite users and page views climbing. Tonight the submission queue ran dry. Janrinok and I could go scrounging, as we sometimes do, but this needs to be addressed.

We have around four thousand registered users, and who knows how may AC's reading along. We can do better.

I challenge each of you to submit stories on a regular basis, at whatever frequency you find comfortable. Really, if even half of us submitted a story once a week, we would have more than we could ever use. Once a day, once a week, once a month, whatever you can handle, send it in.

Bookmark this link: http://soylentnews.org/submit.pl - use it. Give us so many stories that we can select the cream of the crop and stun you with how amazing our community is. Make it happen.

I'm going to leave this story on top for a while, and see what is waiting for us when I get to work in the morning. Wow me, please.

This is our news site. There are others like it, but this one is ours. Its success is in your hands.

[UPDATE: We have received, in less than 12 hours, more submissions than we had the whole rest of the weekend. THANK YOU SO MUCH, and please, keep them coming. Even one story a month matters. Let the party re-commence. :) ]

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  • (Score: 5, Funny) by VLM on Tuesday April 01 2014, @05:08PM

    by VLM (445) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday April 01 2014, @05:08PM (#24328)

    I had to read that title about three times to make sure it wasn't a joke along the lines of /. had its gnaa, SN has its gnaa

    If you don't know what the gnaa is/was and how its offensive/NSFW, well, probably too young to have unsupervised internet access.

    • (Score: -1, Flamebait) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 01 2014, @05:51PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 01 2014, @05:51PM (#24359)

      5 seconds, Mr. Marsh.

      Alright , I'd like to solve the puzzle. NIGGERS!!

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 01 2014, @10:35PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 01 2014, @10:35PM (#24510)

      Yeah, I was going to say "I don't like that word Humphrey..." :)

  • (Score: 2, Funny) by captaindynamo on Tuesday April 01 2014, @05:17PM

    by captaindynamo (261) on Tuesday April 01 2014, @05:17PM (#24338)

    ...Just bacon.

  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by dbe on Tuesday April 01 2014, @05:21PM

    by dbe (1422) on Tuesday April 01 2014, @05:21PM (#24340)

    Is it possible to vote for our favorite submission in the queue to make the interesting (to the readers) bubble up?
    Or the site has not enough submission for this feature to be useful...
    One benefit that I can see is to avoid multiple person submitting the same story and avoid the duplicates.
    -dbe

  • (Score: 5, Funny) by egcagrac0 on Tuesday April 01 2014, @05:28PM

    by egcagrac0 (2705) on Tuesday April 01 2014, @05:28PM (#24342)

    I, for one, am glad that the "this page was generated by a (random string)" line is gone from the top.

    Added no value, and caused moderate annoyance.

    • (Score: 5, Informative) by Foobar Bazbot on Tuesday April 01 2014, @05:41PM

      by Foobar Bazbot (37) on Tuesday April 01 2014, @05:41PM (#24352) Journal

      Personally, I didn't find it very annoying, but I believe the original purpose of that was to distinguish dynamically-generated pages (generated for logged-in users) from static pages (for ACs). AIUI, there are no static pages any more (everything is dynamic, though varnish caches them for 5 minutes for ACs), so it doesn't add any value now. (Of course the random $group of $modifier $type was always whimsy.)

    • (Score: 1) by paulej72 on Tuesday April 01 2014, @05:44PM

      by paulej72 (58) on Tuesday April 01 2014, @05:44PM (#24355) Journal

      We are planning on putting it back in. When the nagger does not need to nag, it will display the "this page was generated" message. I think I'll add some new items to the two lists though to make it more interesting.

      In the new version it will not disrupt the layout of the three main elements below the header.

      --
      Team Leader for SN Development
      • (Score: 2, Insightful) by ticho on Tuesday April 01 2014, @06:04PM

        by ticho (89) on Tuesday April 01 2014, @06:04PM (#24371) Homepage Journal

        Maybe make it configurable, so that those of us who think it is stupid can disable it? :)

      • (Score: 2, Insightful) by spxero on Tuesday April 01 2014, @06:34PM

        by spxero (3061) on Tuesday April 01 2014, @06:34PM (#24395)

        Honestly I found it kind of funny in a grass roots kind of way. That kind of thing would never show up on a major news site and made the site feel more like a community than just a news roll.

      • (Score: 1) by Buck Feta on Tuesday April 01 2014, @06:59PM

        by Buck Feta (958) on Tuesday April 01 2014, @06:59PM (#24409) Journal

        > I think I'll add some new items to the two lists though to make it more interesting

        Oh boy, Mad-libs!

        Adjectives: tasty, fatty, savory, spattering porcine, scrumptious, delectable, heavenly, toothsome.

        Nouns: bacon, pigs, hogs, breakfast meats, rashers, porkbellies, swine, boars, porkers.

        --
        - fractious political commentary goes here -
      • (Score: 1) by Yog-Yogguth on Wednesday April 02 2014, @02:35AM

        by Yog-Yogguth (1862) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday April 02 2014, @02:35AM (#24576) Journal

        It needs a kitchen sink, please add one :)

        E.g.: "this page was generated for $user by a kitchen sink full of bacon".

        --
        Bite harder Ouroboros, bite! tails.boum.org/ linux USB CD secure desktop IRC *crypt tor (not endorsements (XKeyScore))
  • (Score: 1) by Ken_g6 on Tuesday April 01 2014, @05:38PM

    by Ken_g6 (3706) on Tuesday April 01 2014, @05:38PM (#24348)

    I don't know if it's the combination of bacon and muffins...or something else. ;)

    • (Score: 2, Insightful) by paulej72 on Tuesday April 01 2014, @05:41PM

      by paulej72 (58) on Tuesday April 01 2014, @05:41PM (#24353) Journal

      I would say it is due to a month and a half of hard work fixing bugs and adding small features. Check out the code at https://github.com/SoylentNews/slashcode [github.com], if you want to see all of the updated code.

      --
      Team Leader for SN Development
  • (Score: -1) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 01 2014, @05:39PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 01 2014, @05:39PM (#24349)

    Nagger, please.

  • (Score: 2) by skullz on Tuesday April 01 2014, @05:56PM

    by skullz (2532) on Tuesday April 01 2014, @05:56PM (#24364)

    I get this at home from my wife, now I have to get it from Soylent while I'm supposed to be working?

    • (Score: 5, Funny) by TheGratefulNet on Tuesday April 01 2014, @06:25PM

      by TheGratefulNet (659) on Tuesday April 01 2014, @06:25PM (#24388)


      I get this at home from my wife, now I have to get it from Soylent while I'm supposed to be working?

      when you're at work, working, we're getting it at home from your wife...

      --
      "It is now safe to switch off your computer."
      • (Score: 1) by slackcity on Tuesday April 01 2014, @09:22PM

        by slackcity (1240) on Tuesday April 01 2014, @09:22PM (#24468)

        Undoing mods...
        'cos I don't have time to work out how to report this from my phone...
        "Internal SAN check blew up checking moderation rights. Please let the powers that be know how and where you recieved this error
        +1 (Funny) Re:Seriously? (991-24388, 8 points left)
        "

        Recieved?! Fck.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 02 2014, @04:11AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 02 2014, @04:11AM (#24606)

        OMGepicwin

  • (Score: 2) by lhsi on Tuesday April 01 2014, @06:27PM

    by lhsi (711) on Tuesday April 01 2014, @06:27PM (#24392) Journal

    Think I figured out the magic number is 20. I had been wondering. It was under 10 this morning so I submitted a story to see if it would change the message (I thought the "only" might disappear at least over 10). Then just logged on now and saw it at 19. Submitted another story and the message disappeared...

    As a side note, thanks for reformatting story preview. I could never tell if I had formatted my em tags correctly as everything was in italics.

    As another note, does the submit new story page show ALL my previously submitted stories at the top?

  • (Score: 1) by moondoctor on Tuesday April 01 2014, @06:33PM

    by moondoctor (2963) on Tuesday April 01 2014, @06:33PM (#24394)

    "This is a side-effect of simply not having a way to send a notification to a submitter short of an editor going to a user's profile, getting their email, and sending them mail."

    For a tech site - that's appalling/very hard to believe. Maybe set up a macro/script/whatever so it's easier to pop some feedback in to the submitters inbox?

    In all the years I spent there, I *never* submitted a single story to slashdot. I think soy is off to an ok start and want to help. Feedback on how to better do so would be to everyone's benefit.

    In an effort to contribute I have added a submission to the queue. If it is rejected, I would be very interested to find out why so that I can make better submissions in the future.

  • (Score: 1) by cmn32480 on Tuesday April 01 2014, @06:43PM

    by cmn32480 (443) <reversethis-{gro ... {ta} {08423nmc}> on Tuesday April 01 2014, @06:43PM (#24401) Journal

    I actually think leaving it up all the time is a good thing so that people can see how full the story queue is.

    IMHO, it is a good addition.

    --
    "It's a dog eat dog world, and I'm wearing Milkbone underwear" - Norm Peterson
    • (Score: 2) by egcagrac0 on Tuesday April 01 2014, @07:37PM

      by egcagrac0 (2705) on Tuesday April 01 2014, @07:37PM (#24432)

      Yes indeedy.

      Knowing how desperate we are for submissions is a good thing.

      In practicality, just up the threshold to a comfortable 3 digit number - "Only 147 submissions in the queue." is a fine message to display.

  • (Score: 2, Interesting) by scruffybeard on Tuesday April 01 2014, @06:47PM

    by scruffybeard (533) on Tuesday April 01 2014, @06:47PM (#24402)

    Feedback might also help the editors. If too many stories are rejected for being "off topic", then perhaps the editors will want to re-evaluate the subjects that they accept. Also, if stories are rejected because there are too many other better submissions that day, then the editors could give them a second look on slower news days.

    • (Score: 2) by egcagrac0 on Tuesday April 01 2014, @07:40PM

      by egcagrac0 (2705) on Tuesday April 01 2014, @07:40PM (#24433)

      Brilliant. Multi-tiered... "Yes", "No", "Not now"... a dozen or so "Not now"s push it off to "No" land.

      Not sure if users ever get selected to vote on submissions for greenlight, but that would be a pretty good thing for a news community to do.

  • (Score: 2, Funny) by tempest on Tuesday April 01 2014, @07:08PM

    by tempest (3050) on Tuesday April 01 2014, @07:08PM (#24414)

    Might I suggest a large graphic of a sad looking Jimmy Wales asking you to donate submissions. You could also add a graph bar at the bottom to show how much progress we've made towards the goal.

  • (Score: 2) by Angry Jesus on Tuesday April 01 2014, @08:23PM

    by Angry Jesus (182) on Tuesday April 01 2014, @08:23PM (#24452)

    It would be nice if the part of the nagger that says "Only X submissions in the queue" linked directly to the queue. Also "So send in your scoop" should link to the submission page. These are the sort of trivial things that make for an intuitive and discoverable user interface.

    • (Score: 1) by paulej72 on Wednesday April 02 2014, @02:10AM

      by paulej72 (58) on Wednesday April 02 2014, @02:10AM (#24567) Journal

      I had this same idea earlier today. Consider it part of the next release.

      --
      Team Leader for SN Development
      • (Score: 1) by lhsi on Wednesday April 02 2014, @01:38PM

        by lhsi (711) on Wednesday April 02 2014, @01:38PM (#24759) Journal

        It says there are 15 submissions in the queue right now and I looked and 5 (so a third of the total) are from me. Why am I still getting nagged? ;-)

  • (Score: 1) by computersareevil on Tuesday April 01 2014, @08:46PM

    by computersareevil (749) on Tuesday April 01 2014, @08:46PM (#24461)

    Fuck Bacon!

    What? Too soon?

  • (Score: 1) by kbahey on Tuesday April 01 2014, @09:43PM

    by kbahey (1147) on Tuesday April 01 2014, @09:43PM (#24478) Homepage

    If a submission makes it to the front page, then no feedback is needed, obviously.

    If a submission does not make it to the front page, then it is easiest to edit the submission, and add at the very bottom the reason for it being rejected. This is a transparent way, for all to see. Also, it does not need additional code for the site.

    • (Score: 2) by Foobar Bazbot on Tuesday April 01 2014, @10:09PM

      by Foobar Bazbot (37) on Tuesday April 01 2014, @10:09PM (#24492) Journal

      I do like the idea of making the reject reasons public, as it can help others (thus meaning less rejections on their submissions)

      It's my understanding that submissions *poof* into the aether on being rejected, and otherwise hang around forever. So I think that approach would still need some additional code to eventually expire them, and it requires extra effort from the editors to sort through all the rejected submissions to make sure there's no unreviewed submissions in there.

      And frankly, if someone takes to constantly submitting ascii-art goatse, I'd just as soon that disappears as soon as an editor sees it, rather than hanging around for the next 24 hours with a "rejected: goatse" down at the bottom. :)

  • (Score: 2) by Nobuddy on Wednesday April 02 2014, @12:15AM

    by Nobuddy (1626) on Wednesday April 02 2014, @12:15AM (#24535)