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posted by n1 on Thursday November 12 2015, @10:11AM   Printer-friendly
from the shiny-new-ban-hammer dept.

In a move that isn't particularly surprising given their lack of support for intellectual diversity to date, Reddit has introduced outright bans to replace its shadow banning policy.

Reddit has introduced an "Account Suspension" feature that will replace Shadowbanning for non-spammers, though previously shadowbanned accounts are not going to be automatically unbanned.

A post on July 28, 2015 by Reddit admin /u/krispykrackers explains the basics of Shadowbanning, a tool initially created to counteract spammers by hiding their content without letting them know their account had been shadowbanned. However, this was Reddit's only tool for an account-wide ban, and it has since been used on people other than spammers as well.

Account Suspension will be more straightforward and transparent than a Shadowban. An F.A.Q. page (sic) linked in the announcement post states that only Reddit administrators will be able to apply suspensions, which can be temporary or permanent. Permanent suspensions will result in a message about the account's status being added to that account's userpage.

See, I'm a veteran. This means I was willing to take a bullet for the right of my countrymen to speak their minds. On this at least I have not mellowed as I've aged. My personal line in the sand is that we will never site ban for anything but over-the-top spamming or gross/repeated illegal activity while I am on staff. See my journal if you feel the need for that last statement to be expounded upon.


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  • (Score: 4, Informative) by NotSanguine on Thursday November 12 2015, @11:06AM

    by NotSanguine (285) <reversethis-{grO ... a} {eniugnaStoN}> on Thursday November 12 2015, @11:06AM (#262099) Homepage Journal

    There are many things about which we disagree, TMB. And I'm glad to have the opportunity to discuss them with you.

    On this topic however, I couldn't agree with you more. Knowing (and not being very surprised, either) that you (and the rest of the team) take the idea of free expression seriously, is one of the things that makes SN fabulous!

    I hope the folks here realize what you and the rest of the team have accomplished over the last 18 months or so -- I appreciate your hard work and delight in having a place like this to discuss, debate and learn without worrying about being censored.

    Truthfully, I could never get into reading stuff on reddit, as their interface is both ugly and vertigo-inducing. Yuck.

    --
    No, no, you're not thinking; you're just being logical. --Niels Bohr
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  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by The Mighty Buzzard on Thursday November 12 2015, @11:34AM

    I could never get into reading stuff on reddit, as their interface is both ugly and vertigo-inducing.

    Yep, that was my main beef with them. The site's ugly to the point of unusability. Nowadays my main beef is them censoring any speech they find "problematic".

    --
    My rights don't end where your fear begins.
    • (Score: 2) by opinionated_science on Thursday November 12 2015, @01:18PM

      by opinionated_science (4031) on Thursday November 12 2015, @01:18PM (#262127)

      I must agree. There does seem to be a trend of "ban untidy comments to keep the front page pretty" from the likes of reddit. Essentially, we all know that occasionally(!) there are some unwise things said online...

      • (Score: 2, Interesting) by Ethanol-fueled on Thursday November 12 2015, @03:20PM

        by Ethanol-fueled (2792) on Thursday November 12 2015, @03:20PM (#262170) Homepage

        I recently saw an example of how a video critical of European anti-immigration was removed from r/videos for being "political," but a video about the SJW academic nonsense was not, and how the mod said with a straight face that one was political and one wasn't.

        Of course, Reddit's been on my shit-list since I heard about r/news removing the Snowden news and, apparently, more recently The Drone Papers. It's a perfect example of how censorship becomes a slippery-slope and a perfect example of what happens when cabals of hysterical moderators dominate your forum under the guise of "political correctness." When your forum becomes a "safe space," it becomes intellectually dishonest.

        About bans themselves, I think Reddit is headed in the right direction with suspensions, but too-little-too-late. Any organization who engaged in chickenshit tactics like shadowbanning would never again earn my trust, and the only thing that's making them more honest is the (perceived or actual) threat of users leaving. Not to mention that techniques like shadowbanning are an insult to the intelligence of the forum's readership, as if they couldn't figure shit like that out. Let Reddit be a lesson to be learned. If you're going to ban somebody, in my opinion, the least you can do is let them know and why.

        Slashdot used to tout itself as a bastion of free speech, and we all saw what happened with that. I'm not complaining about my ban there, because I know damn well why I was banned and never even asked about it. However, when it happened, I thought it was pretty peculiar how they had plenty of spam rotting in the firehose, and yet my submission about being banned was culled within a minute.

        • (Score: 2) by opinionated_science on Thursday November 12 2015, @03:56PM

          by opinionated_science (4031) on Thursday November 12 2015, @03:56PM (#262190)

          well banning for speech is entirely down to the platform's politics and greed. In principle, we could have a peer-to-peer comment system, where individuals could "ban" seeing another, but the infrastructure could not. If you know why you were banned, the question is , would you do it again?

          I am concerned that the fact that comments are under the control of corporate and political interests, that the whole idea of the internet is at risk.

          Add to this the fact that "news" on websites is ephemeral and changes are made with no edit history. And occasionally puff pieces with no date!!!!

          All these together are the long game - the continual ability to massage the speech that is seen, heard and ultimately the message that is delivered.

          I wish it was paranoia!
          but you see the same stories make the rounds and see the patterns.
          Reading peer reviewed journals makes you paranoid, because "new" stuff has some inbuilt dependencies that are hard to predict...

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 12 2015, @04:25PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 12 2015, @04:25PM (#262200)

      > Nowadays my main beef is them censoring any speech they find "problematic".

      Don't forget, *everything* is problematic.

      - Laci Sarkeesian

  • (Score: 1, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 12 2015, @01:11PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 12 2015, @01:11PM (#262124)

    I could never get into reading stuff on reddit

    IMHO Schneier's blog and Ycombinator have better comments, but for me I don't like the limit for the free lurker of 500 responses. It has something to do with some "Reddit Gold" which I didn't bother to read about. So if your favorite celeb is interviewed or a really interesting story hits 501+ comments, you're fucked and miss out on a lot.

    IMHO a lot of the posts on Reddit really go off-topic quickly, with a lot of dipshits parroting quotes from various TV shows and movies, or just off-topic stupid shit in general.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 12 2015, @05:54PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 12 2015, @05:54PM (#262254)

      or just off-topic stupid shit in general.

      Not too different here (just look at any story that mentions wither sharks or lasers - one guy even complains about it in his sig file), it is just that the number of comments is much less here. What you're complaining about is apparently an Internet thing, not simply a reddit thing.

  • (Score: 2) by jdavidb on Thursday November 12 2015, @03:09PM

    by jdavidb (5690) on Thursday November 12 2015, @03:09PM (#262163) Homepage Journal

    Truthfully, I could never get into reading stuff on reddit, as their interface is both ugly and vertigo-inducing. Yuck.

    I had the same problem although I don't know if it was the interface or what. I wonder if there's something deeply ingrained into personalities such that some of us are the reddit type and some of us just aren't. I took a look or two at reddit and the voting system didn't seem anything like the moderation system that I liked, and I pretty much never gave it a second thought other than when somebody sent me a link.

    Even when I became interested in Bitcoin it seemed all the news on the subject was coming out over there but I still didn't want to go there. I don't hate the place or bear it any ill will - I just don't like it. Even though I was a big fan of Y-combinator I still didn't have any interest.

    I'm betting that's the case for most of the people here, but maybe I'm wrong - curious to see what people say.

    --
    ⓋⒶ☮✝🕊 Secession is the right of all sentient beings
  • (Score: 2) by moondrake on Thursday November 12 2015, @03:56PM

    by moondrake (2658) on Thursday November 12 2015, @03:56PM (#262189)

    I find reddit useful to read (I never post there) about stuff that is mostly irrelevant (reviews of things, info about a game or so, etc). SN is for stuff that does matter.

  • (Score: 2) by Joe Desertrat on Friday November 13 2015, @03:51AM

    by Joe Desertrat (2454) on Friday November 13 2015, @03:51AM (#262493)

    I hope the folks here realize what you and the rest of the team have accomplished over the last 18 months or so -- I appreciate your hard work and delight in having a place like this to discuss, debate and learn without worrying about being censored.

    Slipping off topic here a bit, but I would like to second this sentiment and also add that the frequent complaints about submissions are unnecessary and uncalled for. It should not have to be pointed out that if one does not like the submissions, they can submit articles themselves, and that if there is a particular topic one does not want to discuss here, they can simply skip by it and go to the next article.

    • (Score: 3, Touché) by NotSanguine on Friday November 13 2015, @11:11AM

      frequent complaints about submissions are unnecessary and uncalled for. It should not have to be pointed out that if one does not like the submissions, they can submit articles themselves, and that if there is a particular topic one does not want to discuss here, they can simply skip by it and go to the next article.

      While I tend to agree with you, I'd also point out that complaining about the quality of submissions doesn't (IMHO) reflect poorly on the editorial staff (they do, after all, have to work with the articles submitted and sometimes the choices available are less than stellar). What's more, on a visceral level it's quite satisfying to wag my finger at someone who complains about the quality of a submission and scold them about submitting themselves.

      You wouldn't want to take away one of my many many vices, would you? :)

      --
      No, no, you're not thinking; you're just being logical. --Niels Bohr