New moderation and comment hiding
Date: Thursday, April 28 2005
As you all know, we sometimes have trouble keeping discussions civil on vive. One solution proposed again and again is to not allow anonymous posting; we're not doing that. ;) What we *Are* doing is setting up a moderation system where users get to decide which comments are good and which ones suck. I have just added code to make that one step closer to fruition!
If you go into the comments on the main articles (none of this applies to the forums), you will notice that some comments are initially not shown. The hidden comments have been voted on by our admins and found to have far too much suck and not enough good.
You will also notice some new links on each comment, namely "show comment" or "hide comment". These let you view hidden comments, in case someone's reply makes no sense, or you are a masochist or something.
Currently, voting on comments is restricted to a small set of users, since it's very much a work in progress. As time goes on, we'll be expanding this moderation, eventually letting all users participate in the voting, and providing more related features. Let us know what you think, and if you can think of any problems with this system. Vive le Canada, vive les discussions civils!
A few clarifications based on the comments:
Currently, only the moderators are able to vote on comments. hiding/showing is so you can make your own decisions on the quality of the comments instead of relying on the votes of others
Voting is done based on the content of each individual comment, so the easiest way to not be hidden is to post high quality comments.
You will not get to vote on every comment. The right to vote must be earned by posting good comments of your own, and is a temporary privilege.
Similar systems have been successfully deployed on other sites, so it *is* possible for it to work
This is really just distributing power from a few 'elite' moderators (who are mostly pro-canada anti-NAFTA) to all registered users of the site.
This comment 'hiding' will replace most comment deletion, meaning there should be *less* potential for censorship (and, if there is, it is 'soft' censorship)
We have safeguards in place to avoid most of the potential for abuse, and will add more as needed.
Even though anonymous users will not be able to vote, they will still be able to post.
Yes, this will be a bit subject to the whim of the majority. Suggestions on how to maintain dissenting voices are welcome (other than not having voting).