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More Moderation Madness

CmdrTaco posted more than 15 years ago | from the three-m's-in-one-title dept.


The quest for a better moderation system continues onward. In response to the huge amounts of feedback I've received in the last 24 hours, I've implemented a few changes to the system that you should note. Click the link below to read about some new features, include the upcoming system for "Meta Moderation".

By far the most popular topic is karma. When it was just called "Points" nobody really cared, but now that I changed the name to "Karma" everyone has input on it. Must have a few MUDers out there. Since I intend to start using karma in a few other places, I added a field to display it on your user preferences page. I might add it to the comments display, but I'm holding on that for now since it will just clutter things up.

Default Comment Scores
For many moons now, users with high or low karma were given either a +1 (k:25) or -1 (k:-10) on their comments. Yesterday I added an additional -1 (k:-20) that I have since removed. Many people argued reasonably against it, so its gone.

In addition, I added a much requested feature to allow posters to optionally pass on the +1 bonus when they post. Many people who have earned the bonus point occasionally wanted to say something that they didn't feel deserved the bonus. I guess thats fair.

Anonymous Posting w/o Logging Out
Due to popular demand, I've added an option to allow logged in users to post anonymously. If you use this option, you are every bit as anonymous as you would be if you had logged out, except if you have a +1 bonus, your comment will still get it.

At some point I may eliminate the old AC posting in favor of this one, if only to eliminate a certain amount of knee-jerk posting, but I'm not convinced on this one. I really believe that people should be able to post anonymously, and this system while it still allows that, it would require a login. Its just a hoop- the comment is every bit as anonymous, but I suspect I'll take some flame for making people jump through the hoop. Then again, the flamers are probably a large part of the problem ;) Anyway, I'm not sold on the idea, so I'll probably leave it as is.

Meta Moderation
So who moderates the moderators? Every day comments are mailed to me with a note saying 'this comment was unfairly moderated'. Sometimes they're right. Sometimes they're wrong. But regardless, it seems like the community should be able to regulate this itself. So I've implemented MetaModeration.

I'm debugging it now, and it should be online within the next few days, but I want to post the concept for evaluation:

Basically, anyone who is eligible to moderate is eligible to MetaModerate [M2]. (Registered users with non-negative karma who have had accounts for "awhile" (the definition of which is likely to change but right now is probably a month or so)).

An M2 gets 10 comments, and the moderation done to them. They are then asked to decide if the moderation was fair or unfair. The opinion of the M2 affects the original moderators karma. In otherwords, if you moderate good, you get better karma, you moderate bad, you lose the ability to moderate in the future. As a side bonus, users will get some karma (on a sliding scale so it won't be much) for being an M2.

Its just a thin layer of accountability, but if everyone plays fair, it'll work. (Just please don't start asking for M3 or M4 moderation or I'll start crying).

Some other stuff
So I labored on my labor day (and Andover even has it officially listed as a holiday!) Thanks for all the feedback (good and bad!) in the last few days, please keep it up. I'm sorry we can't implement all the suggestions, but of course some of them aren't feasible, and some are just silly. But as a whole, I think we're getting better. (Or at least my TODO list is getting shorter ;)

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Testing Anonymous (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1699476)

Just testing to see if this anonymous without loging out thing really works.

How about more self-degradation? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1699494)

Sure, I don't know how many people would go for it, but what if even the Anonymous folk such as myself (though I may get an account someday) could self-moderate... down? Give yourself an extra -1, you know?

Honestly, I don't know why exactly someone would do it... but options are always nice, right???

hm... well, just a thought.

Oh, and BTW... First Post! (no silly!, *my* first post ever... :-P )

Re:Can we see who moderates ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1699495)

Well, it's supposed to be anonymous. So I doubt it. --- Just call me... Sir Spank-o-tron

Re:Just something I noticed... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1699503)

Yes, the moderators should try reading from bottom to top whenever moderating, and setting their settings to a chronological order. This is what I usually do.

Re:Testing Anonymous (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1699505)

It sortof works, but then if my .sig is printed below this, it doesn't work

Re:Tag Anonymous Cowards on a Story basis (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1699506)

I don't think Midnight Coder meant to post IP addresses with the AC postings, but for the server to keep track of IP addresses of AC's and use them to tag the postings. The first AC to post would be 'Anonymous Coward #1' but then if that same person posts again in the same thread, it would show up as #1 again, instead, thereby keeping the actual person anonymous, but allowing people to keep track of how many posts one AC has, on a specific topic.

Re:How do you know when you get to "moderate"? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1699510)

Whee, making use of the anonymous post facilities.. :-)
It just shows up. I wish that you got a mail or something..I've really only used the points one time that I was a moderator, mainly because I often didn't know about them or didn't have time when I actually found out. I think it would be nice if they lasted longer, although I can see the potential for abuse there..

NO cookies (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1699512)

if it wasnt for the cookies id have an account.
I will not settup a browser just for /.
and it is to big a hassle to change it all the time.
what we need is an open source windows/*nix
util that just allows cookies from certain sites.
Then destroy them on close. This would prevent abuses.
I was hoping that the 5 series browsers would have this feature no luck so far,,, not a coward just hate cookies

more points.. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1699521)

puh-lease give moderators more points..we cant mark as many bad posts down or as many good posts up as we wish..more points would cure that.
P.S. dont remove anonymous posting! not everyone wants to login and post.

Can we see who moderates ? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1699523)

Can we get each message tagged with who moderates what and in what way ? Also a history of moderators moderations would be nice. FC ? :)

Moderation madness is correct (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1699524)

This is getting a bit silly!

Great Learning (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1699525)

I think this is a great site. Every time I log in I learn something new about almost every aspect of my life. Whether it is how good of a human I am or how poor a programmer I am, I always learn something.

Rob, You have always had great vision for what you wanted to do with /. And I am proud to say that I have been reading your ideas since the days of Chips and Dips(or what ever /. was before it was /.) Keep up the good work.

Moderate! (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1699527)

I am not excactly sure who gets moderator status/points, but it seems it is kind of limited. I think it would be a good idea if all registered users (with non-negative karma) had the ability to moderate all comments, and then the moderations for a comment would be averaged. Then people would quickly react to, and correct, unfairly moderated comments, while "well-rated" comments would be left alone. This would make comments be rated at a right level very soon after posting. TN

Meta-Moderation Concerns (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1699528)

Sometimes when I moderate, the order that the stories appear (when sorted by score) is an influence. Moderation points are not absolute values, but realtive to the other posts in the story. I don't know if every single action is defendable outside of the context of a story.

The social status sytem (moderation) (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1699529)

As far as I am concerned, the moderation system is simply a method of shaping social behavior to conform to the slashdot clique. If you place any value in the point system (status symbol system) and strive to gain more points (status), then you are allowing the small clique of moderators to control your expression. I find this undesirable, I always set my threshold to -1 to negate the status symbol system. I urge everyone to do the same.

On the new karma point sytem, what is karma? Karma is an abstract idea used to control social behavior, now I understand why it suits this moderation system so well. The clique mentality with the moderation is fine, it is only natural. Although, you should understand there are people who do not want to be a part of this. If you want them to leave, then by all means continue.

Re:Can we see who moderates ? (1)

gavinhall (33) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699535)

I think its a great idea, even if it sends to that user that there comment has been moderated and why, even if it doesnt show who it is. This would let people know why there comment was taken off.

Re:Eliminating Trolls & Helping ACs (1)

bjk4 (885) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699538)

  1. I think giving moderators unlimited (-1) ability is a Bad Ideatm. It would invite abuse very quickly by removing the incentive for positive marking versus negative marking. This should be obvious without much thought.
  2. My understanding was that it would start with Score:0, but that it would still get the Score:+1 if you have good Karma. Personally, I think this is a good idea. If you have the ability to log on, then posting anonymously holds less credibility and less accountability than posting regularly. As Rob Malda would prefer us to post under our normal accounts as often as possible, I should expect him to discourage anonymous coward posting as often as possible, very much as he does now.
I just want to add that Slashdot has so far been organized wonderfully. Its popularity reflects this to the extreme.

Now if only the Malda would implement the Slashdot Mirroring Service like was suggested for the Rusty-Case article.

Re:Further suggestions (1)

Thomas Charron (1485) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699539)

He lready stated that the anonymous button would be exactly like you wheren't logged in at all, so no, otherwise, it wouldn't be anonymous..

Re:Just something I noticed... (1)

tzanger (1575) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699540)

Whenever I get the opportunity to moderate I try *not* to moderate posts which are already +2 or greater, since I figure every other moderator will do that. I read articles "highest scores first" and if something *really* grabs me and it's already high, I"ll bump it. Otherwise I save my points for the 0s and 1s.

Only on two occassions have I knocked down users. I figure they'll sit at the bottom anyway.

Re:Just something I noticed... (1)

aheitner (3273) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699547)

I believe (get me if I'm wrong) Rob has reduced the number of moderators from when he originally introduced it. He's said before that he feels that moderation should be a rare thing and only a few comments to an article should ever be moderated in either direction.

I didn't agree initially, but now I do. I try to read everything at least down to 2, and I think this means you get all the intelligent comments, not just the ones lucky enough to make it up to 5.

Of course, there are still a few rare ones that make it up to 5, and some of them don't really deserve it. IMHO moderators should focus on looking for diamonds in the rough rather than further moderating up 3's and 4's.

Perhaps moderating up an article should get harder (requires more points) the higher it starts, so it would cost a moderator a lot of points (or alternatively take several moderators) to bring a 4 up to a 5, but only one to take a 1 to a 2.

How to M2 multiple moderations (1)

Woodlark (3628) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699548)

Say I read an amazing post and moderate it up to +5, then some bozo comes along and moderates it down to -1 flaimbait.. then someone with m2 points see's -1 on it, thinks that's a bad choice--who gets the m2 karma points?

The way *I'd* implement it, the M2 would be presented with *both* moderation activities and be able to score *both*. Same goes for the second example. Remember, it will most likely be on a sliding scale (say, from -5 to strongly agree) so each of the moderators will get the appropriate response. They'll be accountable only for their actions, not for another's.

Droit devant soi on ne peut pas aller bien loin...

Thanks, Rob! (1)

MichaelH (3651) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699549)

Thank you so much for tweaking the auto-points for good karma. I like to initially read /. stories with a threshold of '2', and it was getting sort of tedious dealing with the generally safe postings of the anointed on the occasions when they weren't really contributing anything new. Initially it turned me off to the good karma bump altogether, but this seems like a good compromise: it'll reward /.'s best contributors and hopefully make reading with a '2' threshold a little more interesting.

I hope you move ahead with making anonymous posting a privilege of registered membership. If it deters even a few people from just spouting off because they happened by and have no more ties to Slashdot than that it's displayed on their browser at the moment, it's a good thing. There is clearly still room for abuse by registered users hiding behind momentary anonymity, but if an extra hoop has to be jumped through to gain that privilege in the first place, maybe it will help curb the "drive-by flamings."
Michael Hall

Karma... (1)

Shrubbman (3807) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699551)

Wow, this is JUST the kind of cheese that might bring a few ppl I know to get accounts despite their not readin /. all that often ;`)

Sleep, death, and nanotech (1)

Morgaine (4316) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699555)

Re your sig, death is an engineering problem, and so is sleep. I dare say that nanotech will address both.

Re:Can we see who moderates ? (1)

zempf (4454) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699556)

I don't know, it seems like it might be a bad idea to point out who's moderating what and why. While it might make the moderators more accountable, it might also make them a little more wary of what they moderate, for fear of being retaliated against. That might sound stupid, but a guy who's willing to post "yeah, I'm glad that guy died" would probably LOVE to find out who moderated his post into oblivion. Just my $.02.

-mike kania

Doh! (1)

luge (4808) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699557)

That just undid a whole bunch of moderation in this thread. Argh. I thought you could post in a thread after your moderation points were used up. Oh well...

Good work, Rob (1)

David Ziegler (5030) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699558)

God, I don't envy your position. I'm very impressed by all the changes you've made. Great features. BTW, I saw the article in Time Digital today about Slashdot. Nice to see you get recognition like that. Keep up the great work!

-David Ziegler

Some better solutions (1)

Ross C. Brackett (5878) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699562)

I know Rob joked about doing M3 and M4, but I think that with these most recent changes, the game of one-upsmanship(sp?) will only get worse. Here are some alternatives as I see them:

Part of the problem with DoS-type troll posts, like yesterday's, is that even if you are browsing the article at +2, you'll still see '1 reply beneath your threshold' even for -1 posts. This makes sense if you're reading at +3, and there's a score of 2, 1, or even 0, but think about it: very infrequently is a valid post moderated to -1.

There is so little abuse of this, why not just make it so that if somebody gets moderated down to -1, you don't see it, even as a '1 reply below your threshold'. If you cruise at -1 (which, really, only good moderators and info-gluttons really do), you'll see everything, but that way, even if I'm reading at 0, there is no way I'll see a -1 post that is devoid of merit, but I still could see an 0 Score AC post that could potentially be very worth my while.

That way, we don't have to worry about confusing "meta moderation" or any such other silliness. If moderator abuse is really such an issue, just tighten the moderator guidelines.

BTW, I'm not a big fan of +1 AC posting. I think that +1 AC, along with banning all ACs altogether, will only cause people to start creating junk accounts, posting once, and then abandoning their account, which nobody really wants.

Also, I just wanted to say, I liked someone else's idea of (only for mass violations from one single IP address) banning an entire /24 IP block, identifying the IP address and UID of the violator to anybody who tries to get to Slashdot from that range, telling them, "Sorry, somebody in your subnet has broken the rules. The violator was at so-and-so IP address. Have your network administrator find out who they are, and make them stop doing what they're doing."

I like these ideas simply because they are easily enforceable without modifying the way Slashdot currently is presented to the user (Which is pretty damn well, thank you Mr. Malda!).

What do you guys think?

self-moderation and anonymous cowards (1)

Nemesys (6004) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699563)

Now that people can choose to be anonymous, it's not very different from allowing ACs to choose any name they want. You could abolish ACs and allow them to choose a name for each post. Next to their name there'd be a little [AC] tag to show that it's not a registered user.

ACs could choose whether or not to identify themselves as the same person in a thread, which would help them and the registered users.

The other thing is that if people can now forgo their karma bonus to prevent their silly posts from getting too high a score, maybe they should be allowed to moderate their own posts down as much as they like (so that moderators don't blow their own points on doing this)

Re:I have an idea (1)

garcia (6573) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699567)

Problem here is that it isn't causing you any clutter. A couple extra lines isn't going to kill you. If you really don't like it, don't read it.

Re:Can we see who moderates ? (1)

pen (7191) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699569)

Moderation is supposed to be anonymous, so the "who" part will never be implemented. As for the "why" part, that is already available. Just click on the number in parentheses after the date, and all of the moderation will be showed at the bottom. (For your message, that would be "by Anonymous Coward on 09-06-99 03:59 PM EDT (#3)")


Re:Can we see who moderates ? (1)

pen (7191) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699570)

Oh yeah... one more thing. I believe that the moderation is logged on the server side, so that if someone abuses the system, Rob WILL know who did it. But I don't think that everyone should know who moderated what - for the same reason you shouldn't (and aren't allowed to?) say that you're a moderator in a message unless you post it anonymously.


Re:Can we see who moderates ? (1)

pen (7191) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699571)

This is sadly an attitude I see greatest in the geek community.

Because geeks know best. :)


Re:I have an idea (1)

pen (7191) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699572)

Since you already have an account, you can always set your prefs to filter out "" stories.


Posting as AC affects Karma? (1)

pen (7191) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699574)

If someone posts a comment and checks the "Post Anonymously" box, does their Karma increase or decrease if their comment is moderated up or down?


Meta-Moderation, Anonymous Karma, and Thanks (1)

Evan Vetere (9154) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699577)

Rob, your explanation of meta-moderation was a bit odd. Maybe that's because you've been ceaselessly laboring all labor-day... What do you mean by "A [MetaModerator] gets 10 comments..." - ten chances to moderate another moderator?

And - if I post anonymously, and that post gets cranked up three or four points by the moderators, I don't get credit for those points, do I? In order to do so, the system would have to remember (albeit invisibly) who posted that comment, therefore making it "non-anonymous".

Thanks a ton for the continued improvements.

Re:Karma Bonus Optional (1)

Evan Vetere (9154) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699578)

If you post below your default +1, the current moderators can pump it up again... giving you even more karma. :) Then again, if someone is consitently a good poster, why shouldnt they have that mind-numbingly awesome karma, eh?

Go look at Bruce Perens [] . And, as the script kiddies say, phear.

Re:Tag Anonymous Cowards on a Story basis (1)

chromatic (9471) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699581)

I like the ID idea, but not the IP address idea. It's easy enough to do an nslookup on an IP address and figure things out.

One problem, though, is that some of us who sometimes post behind firewalls all have the same IP address.

QDMerge [] 0.21!

Not with the current code (1)

Zico (14255) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699591)

Sorry, but I believe the current code checks to see if "username == 'Bruce Perens'". If false, then the "Interesting," "Funny," etc. (if different than who it's currently tagged), will still be tagged on to your post, but the score will remain the same. Hope this helps. :)


A bit off topic... (1)

flamingdog (16938) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699596)

Does anyone else *NOT* feel quilty about -1 ing posts that say "go ahead and moderate this down you slashdot robots"???

"I'm not gonna say anything inspirational, I'm just gonna fucking swear a lot"

Re:Karma Bonus Optional (1)

Imperator (17614) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699599)

Actually, that should read:

& 4$ 7H3 31337 d00dz $4Y: ph33r.

I'm sure I could do better if I had some high-ASCII characters handy. :)

Karma, moderators, and the comments display (1)

Imperator (17614) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699600)

On the prefs page, there should be a popup for Karma with three choices: Honor and Display, Honor but Hide, and Ignore and Hide. The first option is self-explanatory, the second displays the comment score as if the Karma weren't there but will still show you a comment that appears like it's 1 below your threshold, and the third will ignore Karma entirely when calculating scores and which comments to display.

When moderating, the comment display should be automatically (and temporarily!) modified to do several things: force -1 viewing, Ignore Karma, eliminate short/long thresholds, and randomize the display order of the top-level replies. This way, moderators see a relatively random selection of all posts, and they moderate posts relative to the normal, pre-Karma baseline (1 for accounts, 0 for ACs). Of course, this now means that non-moderators might now see posts at 7(!), but I don't think that's a life-threatening problem.

Re:How about more self-degradation? (1)

Imperator (17614) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699602)

Sure, I don't know how many people would go for it, but what if even the Anonymous folk such as myself (though I may get an account someday) could self-moderate... down? Give yourself an extra -1, you know?

If you want your post to start off at anything less than 1, you probably shouldn't be posting it. Actually, you might want to post off-topic at 0, but -1 is ridiculous.

How do you know when you get to "moderate"? (1)

billybob (18401) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699605)

I don't really post very often, but I've always wondered how you know when you get those 3 days to moderate. Do you get email about it? Or does it show up as an option suddenly when you're reading comments?
Just curious, any replies would be appreciated.

Re:Moderate! (1)

Surak (18578) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699607)

Ummmm....this is already the case. All registered users with non-negative karma who have had their accounts about a month or so (Rob said this would be changing, though...) have the ability to moderate. The script doles out moderation points based on the activity of that user, which is I believe based on the number of points.

Thanks for considering my idea! (1)

Surak (18578) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699608)

Thanks for at least considering my idea (I'm sure others posted this, so its probably not solely my idea) of requiring anon posters to login. The anonymous post checkbox goes a long way in this direction.

But I still think ACs should login and have an account. This at least will provide some accountability and remove some knee-jerk posts or other loser flamebait posts. Despite the number of "please don't remove AC posts) this does NOT in anyway remove AC posts. It just makes it harder for the type of "hit-and-run" flamebaits and trolls that are really the root of the problem.
The system could keep karma points and make them at least have to create a new account in order to continue their hit-and-run spree if they get significant negative karma.

Again, just my $0.02

Re:just thanks (1)

for(;;); (21766) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699612)

This is interesting -- it sounds like MetaModeration, in practice, will only give negative feedback. MetaModerators exist to keep evil moderators in line; thus mm's will likely spend their time searching for badly-moderated posts. I'd be surprised if any moderators end up with positive moderation karma. (And BTW, Rob does mean that there will be a seperate "moderation" karma, right? If MetaModeration affects regular karma, I think a lot of people will opt out of moderation.)

In a way, moderators regulate other moderators already. If a post is marked down unfairly, other moderators will come along and mark it back up. (This assumes that there are an adequate number of moderator points floating around, which IMHO is not currently the case.) This is already a form of "meta-moderation".

Re:just thanks (1)

MindStalker (22827) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699614)

well personally I hope you get the 10 comments picked randomly all at once. These comments should also not have the name of the commentor displayed. This way you can be as unbaised as possible.

Will the original moderator see what's happened? (1)

bafful (27467) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699628)

He should, otherwise his karma would be going up and down with no other explanation than "must have been some of the moderating". Perhaps show a log of meta-moderation to his moderation on his user info page, or something?

Re:Anonymous Cowards Are Necessary (1)

jonathanclark (29656) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699633)

Anonymous cowards hoping to protect themselves are very trusting or very uninformed. Your login name says nothing about who you are unless you want it to. It's your cookies, IP address, and date/time of posting that are the real indicators. Rob says he doesn't keep logs, but how can one verify this? For someone supported by advertising, the temptation for keeping logs is just to great. Further, if people start saying liable comments, the powers that be might try to force him to keep logs.

To truely post anonymously, use something like If you are extremely paranoid, don't post. :)

The real reason I see for anonymous cowards is for people who don't want to jump through the hoop of login. Most people are lazy more than they are concerned about their privacy. I've never read any articles on NY Times because they make you register. I used slashdot for almost a year before I registered, but before that I made some informative post as AC - most of which I included my name at the bottom of the post.

Karma Bonus Optional (1)

ravenskana (30506) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699638)

In addition, I added a much requested feature to allow posters to optionally pass on the +1 bonus when they post. Many people who have earned the bonus point occasionally wanted to say something that they didn't feel deserved the bonus.

Great! I admit, since I've found out I had an addition to my postings, I've not wanted to post as much, for fear of my comments wouldn't be 'worthy' of the honor given me. Giving us the option to remove it (like I am here :) ) will give a better overall result I think. After all, the current moderators can decide to pump it up again if it is worthy.

Just encourage people to log in (1)

ryanr (30917) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699639)

Make it so that anonymous cowards don't have a way to turn off the comments from other anonymous cowards.

Mn Moderation (1)

The Welcome Rain (31576) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699640)

Under the zero-one-infinity rule, one should either allow no moderation, M1 moderation only, or Mn moderation. Perl will make this easier than C would; it is my understanding that Slashdot's backend is written in Perl. Should be lots of fun!

(Yes, I'm kidding.)


RE: .. (1)

telos (34293) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699643)

Hey, just so you know, he actually has tried a few different systems. Before I lost internet access at work the system was completely different. I believe it has gone through at least three incarnations since then and that was back in April I think.

and you have my email so bug me there if you want to discuss it Signal11

Re:Meta-Moderation explained (1)

Chandon Seldon (43083) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699657)

If this explaination is correct, then I like it. Doing it this way would make it so that the metamoderator doesn't have to screw around with going to *find* moderated posts, and it would also tend to get more instances of moderation policed.

So, if this is true, Good Job Rob!

Re:Just something I noticed... (1)

m3000 (46427) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699661)

That's not a bad idea at all, I'll have to do that next time I get mod points.

Re:Moderate! (1)

m3000 (46427) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699662)

I think he means you basically have unlimited mod points. I get to moderate about once every 2 weeks, but under his plan, I'd always get to moderate as long as my karma wasn't negative. I think it would work as long as the points were averaged.

Re:How do you know when you get to "moderate"? (1)

m3000 (46427) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699663)

You log in one day, and when you go to read the comments, there will be a little drop down box under each post. That's how you know if you get to moderate or not. So you find a piecie of flamebait, click on the little box under the post and select the option named "Flamebait". Once you've done that, go down the the very bottom of the page, and there will be a button that says "Moderate". Click it, and your moderation takes effect.

Re:Meta-Moderation explained (1)

kaphka (50736) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699668)

An M2 logs in and is presented with a page which contains 10 moderated comments (and hopefully the article which they're commenting on)

I really hope this isn't what Rob meant... as far as I'm concerned, nobody should be forced to moderate (let alone meta-moderate) a comment without having read the story, the links, and the other comments in the thread that the comment is from.

Now, you could put all this information into one page (ten times!), but it seems to me it would be much simpler to have meta-moderation work on a point system like moderation.

Re:Just something I noticed... (1)

Field Marshall Stack (58180) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699674)

Yes, the moderators should try reading from bottom to top whenever moderating, and setting their settings to a chronological order. This is what I usually do.
In the last /. story IRT moderation there was a semi-lengthy thread about having /. display threads in random order, rather than chronological. This seemed to me to be an awfully good idea, since it would help spread out the moderation points, plus it would get rid of the 'first post!' nonsense. Has there been any further discussion on anything like that?

Eliminating Trolls & Helping ACs (1)

coldfusion (59198) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699675)

Two suggestions: 1) To help people score down trolls, how about this: if three separate people give -1 to a comment, they don't loose any moderator points. (So an obvious troll message, which was downgraded by three separate individuals, would not count against stored-up moderator points). 2) Since AC's start with a default of Score:0 and non-AC's start with a default of Score:1, how about making users logged in posting anonymously start with Score:1? (Or is this already the case?)

Re:Just something I noticed... (1)

coldfusion (59198) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699676)

Especially true for comments later in the page. I always notice that the first ten or so comments -- regardless of how brilliant they are -- usually get scored up somewhat; after about fifty comments, scores above 1 or 2 are very rare. This is bad, because it penalizes those who have something good to say but arrive late in the discussion. Any way to cure this?

Re:I have an idea (1)

kgasso (60204) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699677)

You probably don't realize that this is important to many people, due to the fact that many actually read the comments... Unless, of course, you want Slashdot to go into the shitter like USENET pretty much has.

Not to be an asshole, but you seem unappreciative.. Rob's been working like a madman to keep a certain degree of sanity in the comments section, and he really deserves more appreciation and praise for this. I think it's great someone gives their time (and gave their resources, at least before the andover deal ;) to something as wonderful as Slashdot.. all for the community.


Re:I have an idea (1)

treke (62626) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699679)

I'd consider this a valid news story. Just look at how full the message boards are and you'll see there are a lot of people using them. Since these people use the boards they ought to know how the boards work, which means Rob should post the information. The news is the obvious place for news about Slashdot, so that's where it goes.

Comments make /. reliable (1)

Mr Gleep (67594) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699684)

How many times has something like the email tax hoax been posted? I read the comments because I know if an article posted is blatantly wrong, someone with direct firsthand knowledge of the subject will point it out. Without comments, Slashdot would just be a random smattering of news from various sources, reputable or non, with no way of verifying stories' authenticity.

More Moderation Madness (1)

Cu (75342) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699691)

Perhaps what we really need is a half-point system. Now just finish reading before you dismiss it. If a user has a history of good commentary, he or she receives a +1/2. Conversely, a -1/2 can be applied to trolls.

A threshold of one would then yield what it does now. A threshold of 1.5 would then yield comments from historical contributors and freshly moderated comments. A threshold of 2 would eliminate the historics.

Or the moderation totals could be tabulated separately and historic performers could be eliminated with just one more preferences check-box.

Thanks Rob, for the hard work. (/. poll waiting to happen? Did you work on Labor Day?)

Comming Soon To A Slashdot Near You (1)

Atypical Stranger (75746) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699692)

meta - moderation
meta - meta moderation
meta - meta - meta moderation
meta - meta - meta -meta moderation
. . .
Rob's Ultimate Moderation

Rob's Ultimate Moderation, the final word on moderation comes when all the meta moderating is finished. It consits of either your IP being banned and the comment deleted or your comment being posted as an article. Ideally the article/ban choice will be determined by the quality of the comment but in practice it will be a simple perl script powerd by a sudo-random number.

Oh, keep true A.C. posting. Many people post comments/read slashdot very rarley and can't be botherd to register. The banning of true A.C. posting will silence the silent majority of slashdot readers. Anyway those who want to be obnoxious will find ways (Like meta - A.C. posting). Don't censor the masses.

Re:How about more self-degradation? (1)

reptilian (75755) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699693)

you gave me an idea somehow. dont ask me how, you just did..

is there going to be a preferences option like "always post anonymously"? Is there already? I didn't check. If not, I think there should be. It would be a lot more convenient and just another reason why it'd be worth getting an account v. always being an AC.

Thanks Rob (1)

zantispam (78764) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699696)

Up until now, I haven't had a desire to moderate. (the checkbox on my preferences page was always unchecked) However, in light of recent events and the hard work Rob's put into it, I have decided to give it a try. I feel that the moderation scheme is being refined to the point of perfection, and if I can help give back to this forum, I will.

Thanks, again, Rob.

how does M2 know who's karma gets change? (1)

Ludd Kilken (81957) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699702)

Say I read an amazing post and moderate it up to +5, then some bozo comes along and moderates it down to -1 flaimbait.. then someone with m2 points see's -1 on it, thinks that's a bad choice--who gets the m2 karma points?
Same deal if I moderate a post up to 4, then someone else comes by and puts it up to 5, then M2 is put upon that post, who gets the M2, me (who used 2-3 mod points) or the last person(who just did 1)?
or perhaps you spread it out evenly on how many points each moderator used..but then my first example the 'good' moderator still gets about 1/2 the bad-points.

Moderation points (1)

scumdamn (82357) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699703)

Of all the ideas I've read on the subject, the best (that didn't get implemented) was giving the moderators 5 + points and 5 - points. That way the moderator wouldn't have the ability to abuse the negative against someone they disagreed with and the five plus points could do some good to highlight the good comments rather than combating the negative comments.

Meta-moderation will be hard, sometimes (1)

muwahaha (85166) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699706)

It will be hard to judge the accuracy of a
moderation at times, as the comment to which
it pertains will be seen out of context.


Thanks! (1)

ColinG (86915) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699710)

I guess we all owe Rob a hardy: "Rob, you rock!"

Thanks Rob.

Re:How do you know when you get to "moderate"? (1)

Artie FM (87445) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699712)

It shows up suddenly when it is your turn. You get a new slashbox telling you how many pts you have, an option menu at the bottom of each comment to give input on a comment, and a "moderate" button to submit your changes at the bottom of the comment page.

Random thread sorting (2)

Luis Casillas (276) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699714)

Especially in the longer threads, virtually nothing past the first couple hundred posts seem to get moderated.

Maybe if moderators are required to look at articles with the top-level threads in random order, this could be solved...


Re:Karma Bonus Optional (2)

caferace (442) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699715)

Or, for comparison look at Rob himself with a measly 6 Karma points [] . (as of this posting...)

What happens when Rob can't post?

Re:Fixing Slashdot Moderation (2)

Ross C. Brackett (5878) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699734)

I think all of these ideas are potentially good, but they all have one thing in common: they are all too complicated. Slashdot moderation should be simple and to the point. A percentage system, for example just about quadruples the complexity of the system.

I do agree, however, with your point #3, (you said 2 twice, everybody makes typos) it would be cool if you could customize Slashdot to a very fine-grained level. But that would be best done with some sort of scripting language (SlashScript?) or something similar that would give you total control over infrequently-selected options. Otherwise, adding 20-30 more User Preferences options is only going to make it more diffucult for newbies, or those who have trouble navigating large amounts of data all at once (such as myself). "My Slashdot" is hard enough as it is.

Good ideas, though, I just don't think we should use them. :-) I totally agree that the "previous proposals" you identified are not the best solutions by a long shot.

... (2)

Signal 11 (7608) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699736)

Rob, a long time ago, in a place far, far away, you said that you would try several moderation systems, and see which one worked out the best. As I recall, when the original incarnation of the moderation system came into being alot of people opposed it. Now that it's been around for awhile, and slashdot has quintupled it's membership...

don't you think it's time for something new?


Tag Anonymous Cowards on a Story basis (2)

Midnight Coder (8953) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699737)

Why not assign an ID to each on anonymous coward on a per story basis? That way it would make it clearer when someone is abusing the system and spamming a story.

Also it would make having coversations with ACs easier. Assign each AC a unique ID the first time the post to a story and kept that ID for the remainder of the story (use the ip address). It would allow people to be anonymous but identifiable.

One Thing... (2)

kevlar (13509) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699741)

One thing to keep in mind... Try _NOT_ to make it bloated. I personally like the system as is, but if more functionality is to be integrated into the current moderation, I suggest it be implemented in the user preferences section, and make sure theres a simple brainless fix to view postings. I'm saying this because recently I went to where they added a ton of functionality, and it drove me nuts trying to figure out how to exploit it. It drove me to the point where I didn't even want to deal. This is just my opinnion.

Re:Tag Anonymous Cowards on a Story basis (2)

mcc (14761) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699742)

this would be pretty nice.

During a couple of the Instant Messanging stories, it appeared that someone was going through and flaming everyone who mentioned Jabber ( by saying jabber was insecure and we should all use this other client with strong encryption. (i can't remember the name of it-- i think it started with a C. anyone know what this is?)

But the thing was, you couldn't really tell if it was just one person or many people. I mean, the writing styles were somewhat similar and such, but since it was all Anonymous Coward you couldn't tell for sure.

While there really isn't anything wrong with this person promoting a secure IMing client, it would have been nice to know whether this was really a massive groundswell of support or just one guy going through and checking for jabber references.

Just situations like that and stuff..

Further suggestions (2)

for(;;); (21766) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699745)

1) If I just click "post anonymously" instead of logging out, and my post gets moderated down, does my karma go down? That's the whole point of posting anonymously -- to be able to say potentially contreversial things without reprimand (beyond flames).

2) To this end, could the "no score +1 bonus" allow one to decrease one's score to 0 or even -1? Sometimes posts are offtopic but still valid, and so should be posted but pre-moderated down.

3) (This is a little offtopic, but at least regards improving slashdot.) Remember how Alan Cox said that (paraphrased) "the problem with slashdot is that everyone tries to get 'First Post' instead of 'First Patch'"? Well, why not post bug tracking info on slashdot? Registered users could filter it out. All Rob would have to do would be to give story-posting privs to list maintainers. Then we'd start getting the slashdot effect on bugs.

My $.02 (2)

RobertGraham (28990) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699748)

The changes sound pretty good. You know, there is a philosophical point behind this: you're still debugging it. A while back there was a posting on how Slashdot is ushering in a "new era" and explained how Slashdot's system is better than traditional news. I thought it was bunch of hooey, because it missed the key point: Slashdot is not better because of any feature it has now, it is better because it is dynamic and evolving to be better.

Another philosophical point is that you are striving to create a system that maintains dynamic equilibrium. The system you are programming isn't silicon but grey matter. You are balancing all our (the readers) conflicting e-motional responses in order to balance the system just right. I find it fascinating how simple decisions (like if you were to remove Anonymous Coward) have unpredictable effects that unbalance the system.

In any case, here are my suggestions:

  • Put up a stats page. I've got Karma=3 right now ('cause I rarely post). How does that compare to everyone else? I want stats! I want encouragement to post well so that I can get higher karma than my friends! Just like SETI@Home/, this could be the carrot you are looking for to encourage people to post well to begin with.
  • Let me moderate my own posts, as described here. Sometimes I've posted things that I later wanted to retract (primarily, because some later post clarified something and I realize that my original posting was completed without merit). Please give me a chance to moderate down without hitting my Karma before anybody else moderates me down. Conversely, sometimes I post some really good stuff. Please let me add some kicker to it that only moderators can see where I can say "Hey, moderator, this was a really good post". This think this reaches equilibrium, because if I hilite posts which moderators think are crap, they might strike back with a -1 rather than a +1.

Re:Can we see who moderates ? (2)

JatTDB (29747) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699749)

I think that would open up even a larger flamebait source than requiring logins to post. I've been a moderator a few times, and I try to be as impartial as I can. But, what if the system you suggest was in place, and someone took my moderation the wrong way? I certainly know enough people in real life who take anything that does not completely jive with their way of thinking as a personal insult. This is sadly an attitude I see greatest in the geek community.

"Funny" comments (2)

legoboy (39651) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699753)

Out of curiousity, what opinions do people have about all the posts moderated up to 3/4/5 for being funny?

While I have a sense of humour, I read comments to see feedback on the article, not the top 10 things about whatever. (As good as a few of the lists have been)

I think that the issue is that users with the +1 only need to be moderated up once to break into what I call the "stellar" comment levels. (Higher than 2). Only a minority of the comments which hit 4 for "funny" are (subjective) deserving of it. Maybe my issue is that people should start their humour posts without the +1.

Also, a question. Does anyone know if moderation on anonymous posts (from logged on users) counts on their karma?

It shouldn't, IMO.


On karma (2)

TypoDaemon (43268) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699755)

Personally, I think that -10 is too high to begin destroying people's ratings, maybe it should happen at -15 or -20.

It's not as any of them will really restrict someone who really wants to troll or flame or whatever, but I'm at -6 and I've never posted a comment that was meant to be flamebait, nor trolling, and i'm not quite sure if any were redundant or not...

But that's another thing.. I don't know how you think its fair for people to be marked down for redundancy. Lord knows that a person can't read most posts in /., and usually I don't read more than about 10-15. If there are lotsa things further down in the comments that says the same thing(which is likely when you hit about 200-300 comments) and I don't see it, I get my post moderated down and more bad karma...

And its only very rarely that any posts ever get moderated up, really...

Maybe you should implement something to lessen bad karma over time. Ya know, if the people aren't screwing up, they're evidently doing something right and deserve to get their karma up.

The Daemon

Metas do Multiply (2)

Zaxo (60646) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699758)

This could get interesting.

... (Just please don't start asking for M3 or M4 moderation or I'll start crying).

It's tortoises all the way down, CmdrTaco. Want some recursive moderation code?


just thanks (2)

reptilian (75755) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699759)

Don't feel too bad there Rob. I've been working all day (labor day) too. Thanks for all the great work.

Maybe someone could describe this MetaModeration to me a bit better? I don't think I quite understand it.

And I really do like the 'Post Anonymously' checkbox - maybe I'll implement something like that for my own site ;)

Meta-Moderation explained (3)

Woodlark (3628) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699764)

Rob, your explanation of meta-moderation was a bit odd. Maybe that's because you've been ceaselessly laboring all labor-day... What do you mean by "A [MetaModerator] gets 10 comments..." - ten chances to moderate another moderator?

Maybe I understood his explanation because I've been coding ceaselessly all Labour day, but here goes my attempt at translation:

"A [MetaModerator] gets 10 comments..."

An M2 logs in and is presented with a page which contains 10 moderated comments (and hopefully the article which they're commenting on) as well as further descriptors explaining what type of action was performed on them. The M2 then decides whether each decision was a good one, a neutral one, a silly, or even bad/spiteful/baseless/you-name-it one, and so indicates through some form provided for that purpose which is most likely right after the comment.

The program then attaches these decisions to a description of the moderators' behaviours. If you get a lot of good decision marks, your Moderation Karma increases. If you get a bunch of bad decision marks, it decreases, and you will eventually lose the ability to moderate if I understand correctly.

Hope that explained it, and Rob, I hope that's pretty much on the mark :)

Droit devant soi on ne peut pas aller bien loin...

Why moderation is a valid topic for /. (3)

Woodlark (3628) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699765)

How about stop posting crap about moderation? I could care less about moderation let alone comments, take away comments, Im here for the news, and could give two craps less what someone posts in a comment area, (How ironic, Im expressing my idea IN a comment area). Quit with all this clutter crap and stick to the NEW and FACTS.

Well, Slashdot isn't just a news and facts site. First off, not everything posted in the articles is correct, and often, they raise more questions. The comment forum does exactly what its name implies: adds a community to /.. And often, the questions which are raised by these articles in the comments are also answered (albeit sometimes conflictingly) in that same forum. The comments forum, thus, is also a valuable place for learning more "news and facts".

Of course, adding this societal impact to /. does mean that we get all that comes along with a society. That means nonsense, back-biting, trolling, name-calling, as well as the brilliant contributions mentioned earlier, not to mention interjections of much needed (and appreciated) humour. And that means, unless we want this society to fall into anarchical chaos (which I'm sure some wouldn't mind or would even enjoy), we need to create some form of moderation.

We all who read /. regularly are members of this community, be it occasional or hard-core. Anything affecting this community (in this case, moderation) affects us. Thus, /. moderation is a valid topic for /. news.

Droit devant soi on ne peut pas aller bien loin...

Might I suggest... (3)

luge (4808) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699766)

that those with good karma be the only ones allowed to m2 moderate? Or, alternately, those who have done a significant quantity of posting? I think meta moderation will be significantly more time/patience consuming to do right, and those who are willing to read and post quality stuff might be substantially more likely to take the time to do a good job with meta-moderation. Just my two cents-
(who is busy picturing Rob rubbing his meta-lamp to summon the GOR, Gor Over Rob...)

Re:just thanks (3)

BJH (11355) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699768)

I think what Rob's describing is something like this:

1 - You come to Slashdot as usual.
2 - You're notified that you have "MetaModerator" status.
3 - You then wander around stories as usual.
4 - You see a comment that's been moderated down unfairly (or perhaps given too high a score - some people lately seem to be using two accounts, one for making comments and another with good karma for moderating up their own comments).
5 - You hit a button that indicates whether the comment was fairly or unfairly moderated.
6 - The original moderator's karma goes up or down, and yours goes up a little.

However, Rob's comment could also be taken to indicate that you're given a link to click on which then shows you a list of ten comments that have been moderated (say, within the last day), which you are then asked to score. This seems awfully inflexible and inefficient to me, but then, I'm not the one coding it in Perl...

(Feel free to jump in here, Rob, and tell me if I'm wrong.)

My Thoughts on Moderation (3)

Reject (11791) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699769)

Here are my thoughts on /. moderation and what some of the good/bad ideas I've seen from other people are.

#1. Make moderation points last longer, or maybe not even expire. In the couple times I've had moderation points I only saw a couple things that I thought were worthy of them, and all the rest of the points ended up in /dev/null. Then when I don't have the points, I see things that deserve to be moderated up or down and I can't. I think giving the moderators points and letting them keep them but putting a roof on the number of moderation points they can have (5? 8? 10?) would allow people to moderate what they think is worthy but stop the tyranny of a bad moderator.

#2. Someone else mentioned that maybe instead of an averaged score it would be a good idea to divide the score of a post into each category and comments could have something like 50% flamebait, 30% troll, 20% funny. I never thought of this before, but it seems like a good idea to me. It would be more accurate, but on the other hand make filtering the bad posts more difficult.

#3. The idea of allowing users to log in and then post anonymously also sounds great to me and requiring people to do this to post anonymously sounds even better. I oppose completely eliminating anonymous posting because there ARE quality anonymous posts and it's a necessary evil. But still, if you make the anonymous users jump through hoopes to do it it'll stop the knee-jerk ACs while those who actually have something worthwhile to say but need to be anonymous for fear of their job or the like will still be able too.

#4. Dynamically generate the moderators. I'm not sure how it's done now, but as slashdot grows the number of moderators it will need grows too. If the number of moderator points given out is based on the number of comments posted in the last (insert time period here) instead of static, it would make keeping the code up to date a hell of a lot easier.

All in all, I don't mind the moderating system as it is but think the above would help improve it, in particular #1.


Re:more points.. (3)

Anpu (29282) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699770)

I agree that we need more total moderation points. Especially in the longer threads, virtually nothing past the first couple hundred posts seem to get moderated. Now this may just be that moderators don't bother trying with such long topics, but I find those are the ones most in need of moderation. You could bump up the number of points a moderator receives a bit, but obviously too many points may lead to abuse. I would consider increasing the number of active moderators at any given time.


"facts" are not always the facts. (3)

thal (33211) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699771)

Often times a story that is posted is not necessarily the whole news and the whole facts. Making the comments an integral part of Slashdot enables things that seem fishy to be judged by a wide range of people. For an example (though perhaps not the best one), look at the story about a Microsoft Linux today and how quickly it was named as a hoax by some people who did a little investigating. This was a bit too easy, because it was just an update on the already-linked news story, but you get the idea.

I'd say "just ignore the comments", but I recently got into a discussion here with people who insisted that you should just "ignore" the bad comments by setting your threshold high and I insisted that we should complain and get rid of non-registered anonymous posting. But I think the "just ignore it" idea more aptly applies here, since you can very easily ignore all of the comments if you want. Separating the good comments from the bad is a bit more difficult.

Just something I noticed... (4)

Skyshadow (508) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699776)

Ever noticed how nothing gets moderated about 3 anymore? I mean, I've seen some really great stuff lately that gets stuck at 3 and stays there. I wonder if there could be some incentive to moderate up...


Nameless can be good... (4)

Fong Sai Yuk (33255) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699778)

I have one reason I want to keep anonymous posting around. It's the fact that we can get insiders from wherever (Microsoft, Red Hat, Apple, ect.) to post without implicating themselves. While the usual grain of salt applies with most AC's, I have seen plenty of anonymous posts that had to have been from people inside the industry. That kind of information can't be had any other way. Allowing AC's can keep us in the know.

Makes you wonder how many high and mighty people in the tech world are AC's here....

Is "logged-in anonymity" really anonymous? (5)

Luis Casillas (276) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699780)

I think this is a very serious question. If I log in to slashdot and check the "Post Anonymously" box in a post, clearly my handle won't be revealed to the readers. But does the system log that it was me who posted anonymously? And what guarantees can I possibly have to that effect?

If in the future, people are required to give a handle or an email address to post "anonymously", their identity could be compromised, since /. would have an email address that might be possible to use to track down the person.

Not that I don't trust Rob and Co. with my privacy-- they have proved time and time again to be reliable. But such a record of the source of "anonymous" postings might even be exploited against their will.

Case in point: some guy X posts something "anonymously" in slashdot that offends some powerful company. Company considers the post to be difamatory, and demands slashdot give the email address of the poster. Slashdot refuses; the company sues slashdot for their posting records.

Even if the suit is unsuccessful, it wouldn't definitely be nice for /. to get harrassed.


Anonymous Cowards Are Necessary (5)

Effugas (2378) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699781)

I mentioned this in another thread, but bottom-line "Anonymous Posting Is Golden" evidence can be found at the following URLs, posted during the NSA Backdoor discussions: /0940241&cid=13 /0940241&cid=79

Read these to understand why AC posts are excellent to have around.

Yours Truly,

Dan Kaminsky
DoxPara Research

Once you pull the pin, Mr. Grenade is no longer your friend.

Fixing Slashdot Moderation (5)

Artie FM (87445) | more than 15 years ago | (#1699783)

*I also posted this in the slashdot poll*

The Steven's piece has pointed out several weaknesses in Slashdot moderation. If Slashdot moderation were ideal all you would have to do is set your threshold to 1 and you wouldn't have to worry about this. This is not an ideal system ... so we should think of ways to make it better.

Here are some of the previous proposals:
1) Make it easier to score thing negative.
The current moderation system can be overloaded by spam like attacks. This is useful because you want moderation pts spent on finding good posts, not weeding out bad ones. But how do you make sure this is not abused? or that valid but possibly inflammatory comments are not marked down? Both things will happen.

2) Eliminate Anonymous Cowardice...
This sounds extreme.. even if we do something simple like requiring a mail address to post I think many good comments from knowledgeable
sources will not be made.

3) Combat moderator overload by making more moderators
The problem here is that average posts may get marked higher than they should.

Here goes what I propose as a solution.
1) Make the score system secondary to classification system. Let moderators classify posts as "Funny", "Informative", or "Flamebait" without spending pts. This way a post might show up as 30%flamebait but 70% funny. This make fair moderation a non-issue because every moderator gets a say about every post. Add a second category to measure the quality of the post as "Must Read", "Good Read", or "Average" this might cost points to moderate or simply be an average of what all the moderators think.

2) Instead of having moderators make only 5 moderations take a look at post volume on that subject. Discussion threads with a very high number of posts need more moderation than normal. Detect this and let moderators make multiple changes cheaply in these threads.

2) Personalize the scoring system for each reader. Already in preferences there are ways to add pts to long posts or subtract from short. This would be an extension to let the reader decide what kind of posts show up. Here goes a list of possible features.
1) each feature listed here may be turned on or off in preferences
2) add/subtract pts to posts from certain authors.
3) subtract pts from all AC's
4) add/subtract from certain types of posts -i.e. humor +1 flamebait -1.
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