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posted by Blackmoore on Monday December 08 2014, @09:00PM   Printer-friendly
from the pay-no-attention-to-the-man-behind-the-curtain dept.

I've been hinting around about this for a week or two, so here it is. I circulated this proposal around the staff mailing list before Thanksgiving and got nobody telling me it sucks and to die in a fire, so it falls to you lot to do it if necessary. Let's be clear beforehand though. This is not a complete solution; no meta-mod consideration included for instance. Nor is it a permanent change. What it is is an experiment. Unless you lot are overwhelmingly opposed, we'll run it for a month or two and either keep it, keep parts of it, or trash it entirely based on staff and community feedback. We're not the other site and this isn't Beta; what we as a community want is what's going to happen.

So, here's the deal with the bit that's likely to be most controversial right out front. Bad downmods and mod-bombing both suck hardcore but you can't really get rid of them and still have downmods even with meta-moderation because you still have the same ideologically driven few who think Troll/Flamebait/Overrated means Disagree. To that end, I converted all the downmods to +0 mods and added a proper Disagree +0 mod. They affect neither score of the comment nor karma of the commenter but will show up beside the comment score (and be subject to user adjustment from their comments preferences page) if they hold a majority vote. It'll be entirely possible, for instance, to have a +5 Troll comment and equally possible that the same comment will show as -1 Troll to someone who has Troll set to -6 in their preferences.

Underrated and Overrated are also out. For Underrated, I for one would really like to know why you think it's underrated. For Overrated, it was almost exclusively used as Disagree, which we now have.

Second, everyone who's been registered for a month or more gets five mod points a day. We're not getting enough mods on comments to suit the number of comments; this should have been tweaked a while back but we quite frankly just let it slip through the cracks. Also, the zero-mod system will need the extra points to reliably push comments from +5 insightful to +5 Flamebait if they warrant it. We may end up tweaking this number as necessary to find the right balance during The Experiment.

Third, we're introducing a new Spam mod. As of this writing it's a -1 to comment score and a -10 to the commenter's karma; this may very well change. Sounds easily abused, yeah? Not so much. Every comment with this mod applied to it will have a link out beside the score that any staff with editor or above clearance on the main site (this excludes me by the way) can simply click to undo every aspect of the spam moderation and ban the moderator(s) who said it was from moderating. First time for a month, second time for six months; these also are arbitrary numbers that could easily change. So, what qualifies as spam so you don't inadvertently get mod-banned?

  • Proper spam. Anything whose primary purpose is advertisement.
  • HOSTS/GNAA/etc... type posts. Recurring, useless annoyances we're all familiar with.
  • Posts so offtopic and lacking value to even be a troll that they can't be called anything else. See here for an example.

Caveats about banning aside, if something is really spam, please use the mod. It will make it much, much easier for us to find spam posts and attempt to block the spammers. One SELECT statement period vs one per post level of easier.

Lastly, if I can find it and change it in time for thorough testing on dev, we'll be doing away with mod-then-post in favor of mod-and-post. Without proper downmods, there's really just no point in limiting you on when you can moderate a comment.

Right, that's pretty much it. Flame or agree as the spirit moves you. Suggestions will all be read and considered but getting them debated, coded, and tested before the January release will be a bit tricky for all but the exceedingly simple ones.

 
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  • (Score: 2) by frojack on Monday December 08 2014, @10:38PM

    by frojack (1554) Subscriber Badge on Monday December 08 2014, @10:38PM (#123907) Journal

    Groupthink modding is a real problem. Its not JUST related to pet conspiracy theories, political or religious views.

    You can get mod-bombed just for badmouthing (badkeyboarding?) Apple, Tesla, or praising anything about Microsoft, Google, or (horrors) Monsanto.

    Various mod armies came with us on our exodus from that other site. They are alive and well. They live among us.

    --
    No, you are mistaken. I've always had this sig.
    Starting Score:    1  point
    Karma-Bonus Modifier   +1  

    Total Score:   2  
  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 08 2014, @11:11PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 08 2014, @11:11PM (#123920)

    You failed to mention the white elephant in the room: try pointing out that Snowden can't actually walk on water or turn water into wine and see what happens to your mod score. And oh yeah, one must be a government shill as well to think those unpure thoughts.

    • (Score: 3, Funny) by maxwell demon on Tuesday December 09 2014, @12:04AM

      by maxwell demon (1608) on Tuesday December 09 2014, @12:04AM (#123948) Journal

      Snowden is now in Russia, where currently the temperatures are such that water is solid. Therefore it should be easy for Snowden to walk on it (provided he doesn't slip, of course).

      Now, turning water into wine may be a problem, but who would want frozen wine anyway? ;-)

      --
      The Tao of math: The numbers you can count are not the real numbers.
      • (Score: 2) by Yog-Yogguth on Tuesday December 09 2014, @03:46AM

        by Yog-Yogguth (1862) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday December 09 2014, @03:46AM (#124048) Journal

        Wine won't work but if he has water and potatoes (“of course he has water and potatoes! Duh. Russia!?”) he could turn it into vodka and then it won't freeze either :3

        I can walk on vodka, I've done it before.

        --
        Bite harder Ouroboros, bite! tails.boum.org/ linux USB CD secure desktop IRC *crypt tor (not endorsements (XKeyScore))
  • (Score: 2) by pnkwarhall on Tuesday December 09 2014, @12:07AM

    by pnkwarhall (4558) on Tuesday December 09 2014, @12:07AM (#123951)

    Groupthink modding is a real problem.

    My favorite example of the outcome of groupthink modding is modern Reddit. The seemingly homogenous beliefs and attitudes of the reddit crowd were what made me first understand the propaganda power of forum modding -- instead of discussing or arguing so-called "controversial" points, just "downmod to oblivion". This nature is what drove me away from participating there.

    Although I'll admit that part of the reason I contribute on Soylent is that I feel the community (in general) is sympathetic to my worldview (and maybe willing to be swayed a little more :), I haven't witnessed the modding problems I saw on Reddit, or to a lesser extent /. This may be due to the (small) size of the community, but I'd like to attribute it to the type of people who make up the community.

    Also

    everyone who's been registered for a month or more gets five mod points a day.

    Yay! My patience pays off! I hope I use the responsibility wisely, and I do not become part of the "mod armies" you speak of!

    --
    Lift Yr Skinny Fists Like Antennas to Heaven
    • (Score: 2) by aristarchus on Tuesday December 09 2014, @02:03AM

      by aristarchus (2645) on Tuesday December 09 2014, @02:03AM (#124004) Journal

      homogenous beliefs and attitudes of the reddit crowd were what made me first understand the propaganda power of forum modding -- instead of discussing or arguing so-called "controversial" points, just "downmod to oblivion". This nature is what drove me away from participating there.

      Although I'll admit that part of the reason I contribute on Soylent is that I feel the community (in general) is sympathetic to my worldview (and maybe willing to be swayed a little more :),

      Ah, it all becomes clear now! We are all here to be swayed by you and your "controversial" opinions! Wish I had known that earlier, so I wouldn't have down-modded you for being an ass.

      How about, instead, just as a suggestion, we all sway you a little bit? I am very surprised by the number of fragile egos here on SN that have to interpret being modded down as someone just having a different opinion. That is not what it is about at all. You may disagree with this, in fact I am pretty sure you do. And that means, . . . oh, it's hopeless. Sway me a little more! I would like to subscribe to your newsletter.

      --
      A pair of ragged claws, scuttling across the floors of silent seas.
      • (Score: 2) by pnkwarhall on Tuesday December 09 2014, @03:17PM

        by pnkwarhall (4558) on Tuesday December 09 2014, @03:17PM (#124194)

        Ah, you didn't know the Internet was made to spread propaganda?

        Seriously, I said **part** of the reason. Why would I take part in a community where I didn't respect the attitudes, knowledge, experience, and beliefs of the other members? I'm not sure where you get the "fragile ego" bit from -- I may or may not have a fragile ego, but I've been downmodded on this site a bare handful of times, and I didn't "run away" or cry in my cereal. I've got a hell of a lot more important things going on in my life than **commenting on the Internet**.

        To be honest with you aristarchus, this is the first forum I've contributed to on a regular basis. I didn't leave Reddit because I was downmodded too much -- I chose not to participate/contribute there because I didn't like what I saw, discussion-wise and groupthink-wise. There's a poster here, anubi, who's sig is: "Prove all things; hold fast that which is good." **This** is an attitude I think is sorely missing in our technocentric culture (particular on /.), and I feel like Soylent is an environment and community where an attitude of "Prove all things" can actually be taken seriously in the discussion of technology.

        Also, I feel like I got a good overview of the problems w/ systemd :) My linux-fu is not advanced enough to make a meaningful opinion there, so I "allowed" myself to be swayed by various Soylent commenters.

        --
        Lift Yr Skinny Fists Like Antennas to Heaven
        • (Score: 2) by aristarchus on Thursday December 11 2014, @07:33AM

          by aristarchus (2645) on Thursday December 11 2014, @07:33AM (#124983) Journal

          This is the first forum I've contributed to on a regular basis.

          Hey! Me too! And I am shocked and amazed (in a good way) that you bothered to respond to my rather sarcastic post. So there may be hope for the Soylent Community after all.

          But my point was (omg, here he goes, again), that some positions are modded down not just because the majority disagrees with them, but that the majority disagrees with them because they are just wrong, and as such there is no point having a debate over the issue. Take for example our MikeeUSA who repeatedly says the Bible authorizes him to kidnap young girls. Now, I, for one, disagree with this. But I do not just "have another opinion on the matter", I think that MikeeUSA needs to be found, as the FBI no doubt is already doing, because he is a pervert. Got that? Not just another opinion. A pervert. Thinking so different that there is no thinking involved. Now this is how many people think about questions like Global Warming, Obamacare, Nuclear Power, and Ayn Rand. Anyone who brings these up is just a pervert, and not worth engaging in debate, since they have their fixed position and are only interested in "swaying" more people to their cause. So, which side are you on? I look forward to reasoned debate amongst free persons.

          --
          A pair of ragged claws, scuttling across the floors of silent seas.
          • (Score: 2) by The Mighty Buzzard on Thursday December 11 2014, @11:33AM

            Now this is how many people think about questions like Global Warming, Obamacare, Nuclear Power, and Ayn Rand. Anyone who brings these up is just a pervert, and not worth engaging in debate, since they have their fixed position and are only interested in "swaying" more people to their cause.

            You pretty much just defined bad down-modding and group-think for me. Thank you.

            --
            When responding to comments, please do not use phrases like "just how stupid can you be". Some take that as a challenge.
  • (Score: 2) by c0lo on Tuesday December 09 2014, @01:28AM

    by c0lo (156) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday December 09 2014, @01:28AM (#123990) Journal

    Various mod armies came with us on our exodus from that other site. They are alive and well. They live among us.

    And why do you reckon this is a bad thing?
    You perceive an eternal life in paradise (all bliss, no conflicts) as a good life?

    (I swear sometime I miss coldfjord, even our Ethanol-fuelled is an amateur by comparison.
    Sorry, Ethy, nothing personal, no disrespect meant or implied).

    --
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
    • (Score: 2) by frojack on Tuesday December 09 2014, @09:50AM

      by frojack (1554) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday December 09 2014, @09:50AM (#124128) Journal

      I think mod armies a bad thing because people having 27 different accounts just so that they are sure to have mod points and coordinating with their like minded buddies to bury other points of view is childish behavior.

      The former is a bully, the later is a gang.

      --
      No, you are mistaken. I've always had this sig.