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Reply to bad stories with "mod STORY down" comments.

javaxman (705658) writes | more than 8 years ago

User Journal 3

I think I've finally reached the breaking point with regards to stories on slashdot that just plain suck. Stories which are dupes of very recent stories, stories which include ( often intentionally ) just plain wrong, inflamatory, trolling statements, stories that don't pass the "laugh test" for credibility.I think I've finally reached the breaking point with regards to stories on slashdot that just plain suck. Stories which are dupes of very recent stories, stories which include ( often intentionally ) just plain wrong, inflamatory, trolling statements, stories that don't pass the "laugh test" for credibility.

Simply put, all to often these days, stories on slashdot end up being neither news, for stuff that matters. They often seem more like the most sensational, most-likely-to-generate-comments-and-page-views tripe of the day.

The problem is that we slashdot readers are at the mercy of the 'editors' here. Unfortunately, a good deal of the value in slashdot, aside from the insighful, informed comments from it's readership, is that the stories are somewhat limited in number and somewhat pre-culled from the insanely large amount of information available on the internet. By having fewer, better stories, Slashdot has the ability to be better than user-story-moderated sites like the oh-so-frequently compared Digg, but unfortunately it doesn't appear to be working out that way. I like having fewer stories, but if they're dupes or trolls designed for page hits, rather than interesting, informative stories, it hardly makes for a website worth visiting.

What to do about this problem?

I'm not sure. Since we have no story moderation, really our only options are

(a) vote with our feet / pageviews. Go to some other site. I might. Don't tell me to "just ignore lame stories", sometimes it's hard to tell, and if I want to skim stories and pick the interesting ones, I can go to Digg or even Yahoo/Google/whatever news feeds...

(b) Complain in comments. A lot. That's what I'm proposing. If a story is a dupe, meaning NO new information is contained, or a troll, meaning it contains simply wrong statements made for no reason other than to inflame opinion ( you have to be careful there, but sometimes it's obvious ), hit "REPLY" and type the subject "mod STORY down". Don't just leave the comment blank, explain why the story sucks.

Maybe if enough people do this, slashdot editors will pick up a clue. Even if they don't, you and I will be able to check the comments of a story for lots of ( likely low-moderated ) "mod STORY down" comments and we'll ignore it, depriving the trolling slashdot editor of his page views.

Will it work? If not, at least we tried. Will our karma be damaged by well-meaning moderators or vengeful 'editors' ? Do you really care about your slashdot karma that much ? I'd really have a slashdot with decent stories, myself.

Oh, and by the way... do people submit stories knowing they're basically trolls? What kind of person would be so anti-social as to do such a thing ?

Well, look at this comment to find out. It appears to just be a game to some, even though it really kinda spoils slashdot for others. Dang, mean people suck, don't they?

While I like the idea of Foeing people who submit bad/troll stories, that means I won't see their comments... but will see their stories. The problem is that sometimes, though the stories are terrible, the comments are reasonable. For example, here is a post from someone who submitted a hoax story without a 'funny' category or other disclaimer. But it seems their comments may occasionally be worthwhile. We should certainly start a campaign to get everyone to foe Beatles Beatles, though, there does seem to be a consensus there...

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Infamy! (1)

BarryNorton (778694) | more than 8 years ago | (#14562275)

Thanks for the mention. As it goes, I've been through the posting 'MOD STORY xxxxxx' myself, through spending hours writing carefully researched stories and reviews (only to see them turned down), through publically leaving, through trying to address Taco etc. etc.

I'm sorry that my experiment annoyed you so much, but I'm beyond caring.

To be frank, criticise me when you've had some stories accepted yourself and seen how this place actually works.

Re:Infamy! (1)

javaxman (705658) | more than 8 years ago | (#14563281)

To be frank, criticise me when you've had some stories accepted yourself and seen how this place actually works.

I have had a few stories accepted myself, actually. Not many, though... I don't submit them that often. I wish I could show you the list of 'rejected' stories somehow... typically about a day after I see my story rejected, a nearly identical one submitted by someone else appears on the main page. Terribly annoying, but I'm not personally emotionally attached to the idea that my stories show up. The few times my stories do show up, I'm always just pleasantly shocked. There doesn't seem to be much rhyme or reason to how stories get picked up to me... I imagine it's pretty much a question of who is the editor at the time, what time of day it is, what stories have already been rejected, if you have some sort of history associated with your account ( just speculating there, it's probably not so advanced, but it seems I get mod points a *lot* less often than I used to for whatever reason, story rejections could be tied in there )... I tend to think if your story gets pick up is more or less the random whim of the editor.

Yesterday I submitted the story about how Partisans are good at ignoring facts according to a new study [slashdot.org] , though I filed it under "Science", not "Politics"... but whatever, maybe Slashdot prefers to be a day behind the news ? I really don't care so long as the stories don't suck, i.e. contain previously-discussed false/misleading statements ( like yours ). I've been a reader since 1999 or so, and as a result I remember when things weren't so bad on Slashdot. It could be there were just more decent tech stories back then? Maybe, but there are other things going on to bring down the quality of stories... like trolling.

I'm sorry that my experiment annoyed you so much, but I'm beyond caring.

As much as that's an apology, thanks I guess??? I mean, given that you seem to have much the same beef with stories on Slashdot as I do, it seems puzzling to me that your approach would be ( after finding no other recourse ) to try to sabotage it but... I guess I can understand it... kinda sorta... though it's a little like tossing trash at the side of the road as a way to protest litterbugs, really. Maybe I can't understand it.

Damn. I don't know if I should "friend" you or "foe" you. I guess I'll just leave you neutral.

Mod Submitors [sic] (1)

David Rolfe (38) | more than 8 years ago | (#14656650)

I think a pretty easy and painless way would be to just 'foe' (and get others to 'foe' as well) everyone that submits a troll story. Dupes shouldn't be foed, because let's face it, dupes are the editors fault. :) (Unless they are submitted weeks after the fact, then it's both the submitor -- for not reading Slashdot all the time -- and the editor -- for the same reason, haha.)

The final nail in the coffin would be if Slashcode was updated with a pref to ignore stories from foes, or if it showed your relationship dot after submitors.
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