from the See-dick-mod.-See-dick-sock-mod.-See-dick-get-banned.-Don't-be-a-dick dept.
In observance of Labor Day (a federal holiday in the United States celebrated on the first Monday in September) I am hereby inviting the SoylentNews editorial staff to enjoy a three-day weekend — Saturday, Sunday, and Monday. Stories will be scheduled and released on a weekend-story-spacing schedule. The holiday marks the unofficial end of summer and it often marked by parades, sales, cookouts, and the like.
These volunteers give selflessly of their spare time to try and make sure we keep the stories coming. Please join me in thanking them for their generous sacrifice of spare time and experience to keep those stories coming!
(short for The Onion Router) is in the process of rolling out an updated protocol. ThIs update is NOT compatible with prior versions. SoylentNews has had support from the early days of the site (thanks to NCommander, IIRC). As nobody on staff has experience in this area, our support will cease at any time - the TOR site is saying October. It was laudable at the time. Unfortunately, its more recent use seems to have been primarily by spammers. As such, we could lose access to Tor at anytime as our network "neighbors" either upgrade or find themselves no longer "adjacent" to back-level versions like ours is. You can still access this site using TOR with our normal URL.
We have been methodically identifying and shutting down sockpuppet accounts. These are NOT allowed. Attempts to bypass the will of the community by controlling multiple accounts is forbidden. One user, one account. Do NOT use another account (or accounts) to upmod one-or-more accounts that you control. If you do not like getting downmods, take a look at the comments you post. Sure, occasionally, someone might mis-moderate a comment by accident (heck, *I* have done it!) In our experience, such errors are generally rare and are frequently followed at some point by others, offsetting moderations.
So: "Sock mods" are being tracked. We are methodically investigating cases. Accounts are being disabled, and never in isolation. It takes agreement by at least two admins, and usually more, for any action to be taken.
If you are generally a positive contributor to the site, such impacts to your karma are usually just "line noise" in the grand scheme of things.
In a similar vein, if you disagree with someone, do not attempt to silence them by using multiple accounts to mod their comments down.
We have seen cases of both "mod bombs" and "sock mods". We have held back on taking action until we are certain. Any action taken is first confirmed by at least one other staff member. Complaining about moderation is OFF TOPIC and tends to get moderated as such.
We've previously tried to set concrete limits. "Give them an inch and they'll take a mile." I have personally witnessed cases where one account downmodded another account 4 times in one day. For ten days in a row! That was just enough to avoid getting moderations reversed, but certainly enough to show a concerted effort to moderate the commenter rather than just the comment.
This will no longer be tolerated.
Admins can see who has moderated whom. We talk among ourselves. We discuss cases that come up. It's pretty simple, really: "Don't be a jerk!"
Communicating and finding help online is crucial to building a solid community. After many years of using emails, mailing lists, blog comments, and IRC to help Tor users, we believe that time has come to improve our discussion channels.
Today, we're happy to announce a new discussion and user support platform: the Tor Forum.
The new forum is powered by Discourse: a modern, friendly, and free and open source software. The forum posts are publicly readable, and you don't need to log in to navigate and access the content. It's also possible to install the Discourse App on your mobile device and receive notifications. For users who like the traditional mailing list format, Discourse features email integration. The new forum is compatible and works with Tor Browser (security slider level set 'Safer').
Currently, the Tor Forum is fully hosted by Discourse, and because they do not support onion services yet, it won't have an onion site soon. That is also why the domain is torproject.net, because of our system security policy on using *.torproject.org only for sites we host in our own infrastructure.
In the last few years, the Tor Project has improved internal tools and platforms to make it easy to contribute to Tor software development and to participate in our community. For example, we revamped our websites, moved from Trac to GitLab, connected our chat channels on Matrix, and now we're launching the Tor Forum.
We invite the Tor community to join the Tor Forum and contribute with us! Moderation policy: Don't be a jerk. Be awesome instead.
Labor Day, Onion (TOR), and Moderation.