ML: Moderating converstaions in virtual space

Off topic discourse and banter encouraged.
User avatar
RJN
Baffled Boffin
Posts: 1668
Joined: Sat Jul 24, 2004 1:58 pm
Location: Michigan Tech

ML: Moderating converstaions in virtual space

Post by RJN » Thu Oct 21, 2010 6:29 pm

http://nielsenhayden.com/makinglight/ar ... tml#006036

by Teresa
Some things I know about moderating conversations in virtual space:

1. There can be no ongoing discourse without some degree of moderation, if only to kill off the hardcore trolls. It takes rather more moderation than that to create a complex, nuanced, civil discourse. If you want that to happen, you have to give of yourself. Providing the space but not tending the conversation is like expecting that your front yard will automatically turn itself into a garden.

2. Once you have a well-established online conversation space, with enough regulars to explain the local mores to newcomers, they’ll do a lot of the policing themselves.

3. You own the space. You host the conversation. You don’t own the community. Respect their needs. For instance, if you’re going away for a while, don’t shut down your comment area. Give them an open thread to play with, so they’ll still be there when you get back.

4. Message persistence rewards people who write good comments.

5. Over-specific rules are an invitation to people who get off on gaming the system.

6. Civil speech and impassioned speech are not opposed and mutually exclusive sets. Being interesting trumps any amount of conventional politeness.

7. Things to cherish: Your regulars. A sense of community. Real expertise. Genuine engagement with the subject under discussion. Outstanding performances. Helping others. Cooperation in maintenance of a good conversation. Taking the time to teach newbies the ropes.

All these things should be rewarded with your attention and praise. And if you get a particularly good comment, consider adding it to the original post.

8. Grant more lenience to participants who are only part-time jerks, as long as they’re valuable the rest of the time.

9. If you judge that a post is offensive, upsetting, or just plain unpleasant, it’s important to get rid of it, or at least make it hard to read. Do it as quickly as possible. There’s no more useless advice than to tell people to just ignore such things. We can’t. We automatically read what falls under our eyes.

10. Another important rule: You can let one jeering, unpleasant jerk hang around for a while, but the minute you get two or more of them egging each other on, they both have to go, and all their recent messages with them. There are others like them prowling the net, looking for just that kind of situation. More of them will turn up, and they’ll encourage each other to behave more and more outrageously. Kill them quickly and have no regrets.

11. You can’t automate intelligence. In theory, systems like Slashdot’s ought to work better than they do. Maintaining a conversation is a task for human beings.

12. Disemvowelling works. Consider it.

13. If someone you’ve disemvowelled comes back and behaves, forgive and forget their earlier gaffes. You’re acting in the service of civility, not abstract justice.

User avatar
neufer
Vacationer at Tralfamadore
Posts: 18805
Joined: Mon Jan 21, 2008 1:57 pm
Location: Alexandria, Virginia

Re: ML: Moderating converstaions in virtual space

Post by neufer » Thu Oct 21, 2010 7:00 pm

RJN wrote:http://nielsenhayden.com/makinglight/ar ... tml#006036

by Teresa
Some things I know about moderating conversations in virtual space:

12. Disemboweling works. Consider it.

13. If someone you’ve disemboweled comes back and behaves, forgive and forget their earlier gaffes.
You’re acting in the service of civility, not abstract justice.
I'll be good...I promise! :shock:
Art Neuendorffer

User avatar
bystander
Apathetic Retiree
Posts: 21579
Joined: Mon Aug 28, 2006 2:06 pm
Location: Oklahoma

Re: ML: Moderating converstaions in virtual space

Post by bystander » Thu Oct 21, 2010 7:18 pm

neufer wrote:I'll be good...I promise! :shock:
Too late! The men with knives are on their way.

Oops, I guess I shouldn't have told you that, yet.

User avatar
BMAONE23
Commentator Model 1.23
Posts: 4076
Joined: Wed Feb 23, 2005 6:55 pm
Location: California

Re: ML: Moderating converstaions in virtual space

Post by BMAONE23 » Thu Oct 21, 2010 7:23 pm

RJN wrote:http://nielsenhayden.com/makinglight/ar ... tml#006036

by Teresa
Some things I know about moderating conversations in virtual space:

(snip)

12. Disemvowelling works. Consider it.
Is "Disemvoweling:" a mistype?
I like it

User avatar
owlice
Guardian of the Codes
Posts: 8406
Joined: Wed Aug 04, 2004 4:18 pm
Location: Washington, DC

Re: ML: Moderating converstaions in virtual space

Post by owlice » Thu Oct 21, 2010 7:24 pm

A closed mouth gathers no foot.

User avatar
neufer
Vacationer at Tralfamadore
Posts: 18805
Joined: Mon Jan 21, 2008 1:57 pm
Location: Alexandria, Virginia

Re: ML: Moderating converstaions in virtual space

Post by neufer » Thu Oct 21, 2010 8:18 pm

bystander wrote:
neufer wrote:I'll be good...I promise! :shock:
Too late! The men with knives are on their way.
Whew! That's a relief.

In other newsgroups they've usually shown up at the door with spoons.
Art Neuendorffer

User avatar
bystander
Apathetic Retiree
Posts: 21579
Joined: Mon Aug 28, 2006 2:06 pm
Location: Oklahoma

Re: ML: Moderating converstaions in virtual space

Post by bystander » Thu Oct 21, 2010 9:31 pm

Disemvoweling may work, but without tools, (phpBB3 has none that I know of), it is a rather tedious task.

User avatar
emc
Equine Locutionist
Posts: 1307
Joined: Tue Jul 17, 2007 12:15 pm
AKA: Bear
Location: Ed’s World

Re: ML: Moderating converstaions in virtual space

Post by emc » Thu Oct 21, 2010 9:46 pm

RJN wrote:http://nielsenhayden.com/makinglight/ar ... tml#006036

by Teresa
Some things I know about moderating conversations in virtual space:

.... Kill them quickly and have no regrets.
I found this image of one of our SA* moderators... doesn't look like a spoon to me.

Image
Ed
Casting Art to the Net
Sometimes the best path is a new one.

User avatar
geckzilla
Ocular Digitator
Posts: 9180
Joined: Wed Sep 12, 2007 12:42 pm
Location: Modesto, CA

Re: ML: Moderating converstaions in virtual space

Post by geckzilla » Sat Oct 23, 2010 2:37 pm

bystander wrote:Disemvoweling may work, but without tools, (phpBB3 has none that I know of), it is a rather tedious task.
Sounds like a job for regular expression.

Find: [aeiou]
Replace with:

Bam! (Go to the "replace" tab and delete the [[$&$&]])
Dsmvwlng my wrk, bt wtht tls, (phpBB3 hs nn tht knw f), t s rthr tds tsk.
Just call me "geck" because "zilla" is like a last name.

User avatar
owlice
Guardian of the Codes
Posts: 8406
Joined: Wed Aug 04, 2004 4:18 pm
Location: Washington, DC

Re: ML: Moderating converstaions in virtual space

Post by owlice » Fri Nov 05, 2010 1:42 pm

A lot of the (many) comments to her article are worth reading.
A closed mouth gathers no foot.