Suggestion: Stop pre-blocking users. Trust flagging and moderaters.

I have discussed this a while back directly with @Stephen Coles, who was unsure about changing the policy for “existing members and the expectations they had when they dedicated themselves to the forum.” He suggested I post the discussion here, which I am doing now.

When Typedrawers launched, I was deeply opposed to the Typedrawers “manifest” that blocked certain individuals from joining the forum. I see no reason to exclude people from the outset, when we have perfectly good tools to moderate the debate. If someone cannot behave in a proper civilized manner in our forums, sure – flag them, give them a warning, and ban them if they keep at it. But a community built on exclusion? In my opinion, that is immature, arrogant and a deeply embarrasing moment in the proud history of type.


  • James PuckettJames Puckett Posts: 1,623
    edited September 2015
    Are you referring to Stephen’s new policy of manually approving accounts to keep spammer busy, or to the preemptive bans I set up for <you know who>?
  • edited September 2015
    James, I am referring to preemptive bans. I clarified my post. May I ask you to remove the names in your comment? I know I wouldn’t want a web search of my name turn up negative personal comments about me.
  • Frode, I mostly agree. Preemptive bans have always seemed odd to me – it sets a tone. I can, however, sympathize with the desire to eliminate certain kinds of predictable behavior from the get-go. Can moderation tools solve aggregrate conduct (a plethora of subjective offenses, not easily flagged on their own)? Maybe? Anyway, nothing is foolproof. These drawers are still cracked open enough that flippant and otherwise unproductive comments will still manage to find their way into the corners. But as with those, too, the community’s response is likely better than decree.
  • I tried to remove all these shortly after I took over (though there could be a few that were caught in the broader filters that block frequently spamming email domains, such as yahoo).

    You’ll have to dig deep in that list to find all the wildcard bans I added for you-know-who.

  • Thanks, Stephen.
  • I find this unreassuring. Further, I say again that excessive metacommentary about what is and is not acceptable discussion here is counterproductive when there is so little discussion to begin with.

    But, if Stephen “Fingers in Many Pies” Coles is committed to constantly talking about things like this, there needs to be a dedicated MetaDrawers forum for it.
  • Case in point.
  • The people who were previously pre-banned are aware that they can join if they choose. 
  • I hope that if some of the people previously pre-banned in the future behave here the way they have done it in other forums, we will find a way to stop them from spoiling TD.
  • Why are we not allowed to flag posts by moderators?
  • Why are we not allowed to flag posts by moderators?
    It’s probably a software default that keeps users from harassing moderators by flagging important posts to make them disappear. 
  • Doesn't it take enough flags to bury a post, at which point maybe it's a manifestation of a moderator being a fallible human too? To me it seems oligarchic.
  • James PuckettJames Puckett Posts: 1,623
    edited October 2016
    Vanilla is enterprise software. It’s intended for forums with thousands of users. Not everything it does makes sense for a forum as small as Typedrawers.
  • Dave CrosslandDave Crossland Posts: 1,040
    edited October 2016
    It's meant to be oligarchic. I thought you liked that mode of power and dislike democracy?
  • Is there a way to see the flags a member has given in addition to received? It would help to identify certain... types of contributors.
  • I'm thankful it's now possible to flag moderators. Feedback is feedback.
  • Why is it no longer possible to flag a moderator? It's elitist, and sends the wrong message. Please put it back the way it was.
Sign In or Register to comment.