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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, @11:06PM

    by frojack (1554) on Monday December 08 2014, @11:06PM (#123917) Journal

    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.

    I don't quite understand how this would help anybody. It seems the steps you would have to go to to cause trolls to fall of the page would be some sort of simultaneous equation of negative praise filtered through positive berating with a side order of attentive ignoring.

    I don't get it...

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

    Total Score:   2  
  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by c0lo on Tuesday December 09 2014, @01:18AM

    by c0lo (156) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday December 09 2014, @01:18AM (#123985) Journal

    I don't quite understand how this would help anybody.

    This is a subtle problem. Or at least to me it appears so.

    You see, it seems that we want to measure two aspects with a single metric - mod/karma points; specifically, the two aspects are

    1. :
    2. the value of the message (even when controversial and don't agree with, we can still appreciate the angle of view of the problem)
    3. the "behaviour" of the poster (e.g. the language used as the form of expression or "trolling for the sake of trolling")

    The downside: because of nature of two aspects are different in nature, paradoxes may appear from the use of a single coin (e.g. putting a monetary value on life from a narrow perspective, like depicted in this post []**. Or maybe: pirate music for profit - a victimless crime - pay with life years in jail)

    Maybe it would be good to have separate modding for "message value" and another one for "poster behaviour value".
    But... this would create an economy with two different coins (so, different karma types?) and I haven't explored enough all the implications to say: "This is my proposal. It works like this and that and those are the risks".

    ** I linked it on SN only because it's easier to isolate the relevant quotation.

  • (Score: 2) by The Mighty Buzzard on Tuesday December 09 2014, @02:00AM

    by The Mighty Buzzard (18) Subscriber Badge <> on Tuesday December 09 2014, @02:00AM (#124003) Homepage Journal

    I'm not entirely certain it will, hence The Experiment. If we want to solve a problem nobody else has been able to handle, we're going to have to try things that haven't already been tried though.

    My rights don't end where your fear begins.
    • (Score: 2) by frojack on Tuesday December 09 2014, @09:44AM

      by frojack (1554) on Tuesday December 09 2014, @09:44AM (#124126) Journal

      Well, I'm fine with experiments.

      I just worry when even troll mods become positive mods.

      When I start writing the documentation for a project, and I find myself explaining totally bizarre processes or results, I usually go back and re-write some portion rather than document an absurdity.

      Are we so abhorrent of down-mods that we will throw the baby out with the bathwater?

      I think that the source of the problem is that the mod categories have a Personal Insult as the strongest negative score. Informative, insightful, funny, underrated, and overrated all seem to pertain to the post itself, but Troll pertains to the poster.

      Maybe overrated should be renamed unpersuasive or factually wrong
      Troll should be called incendiary, uncivil, or combative tone.

      Or Maybe the whole problem goes away if people can just vote "disagree" rather than being tempted to use a rating that amounts to an ad hominem attack.

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