General Moderation Topic


is there some sort of new badge for getting a time out or temporary badge ?


If you click on a user who has been suspended, it will indicate their suspension.

If you go into their profile it shows a suspension count there as well (I think, anyway, maybe that’s a mod thing).


@taz has been given a timeout for repeatedly denigrating the community and posting inappropriate remarks in general. They have generated a substantial amount of work for the mod team over the last several days.

Unpopular opinions are perfectly fine here, but not when they are interspersed with attacks on other users or wildly offtopic derails.

What about.. ism?

I like this idea. Viewing a profile is too proactive, but having a special indicator in a user’s post when they are currently suspended would be really useful.


You don’t really have to visit the full profile, just click to expand their usercard in the topic. You’ll see it there.


That doesn’t work very well on mobile. (And again still requires proactive extra effort.)


Well, that’s true. But I’m not down with a Crimson Badge of Shame showing on someone’s every post.


If someone’s on time out (or banned) it could be a useful indicator to not engage with them. They obviously had to do something bad to get into this state and it could go away once their status is cleared.

I guess we’ll just have to agree to disagree here.


How can you engage here with someone who isn’t here?

I think any posts the mods haven’t taken down is part of the conversation. I think we try to explore and discuss ideas more than personalities and behavior more than perceived intent, or we don’t.

I suppose we/they could shun the non-believers and discourage even positive further interactions, but that doesn’t appear to be the way the BBers want to do it.

Surely there are other places for the looking for indicators for who we’re not supposed to talk to.


How do you know in the first place?


i can think of three cases and having a scarlet letter badge doesn’t really do much for the community in any of the cases.

  1. someone new makes a comment, or a series of comments which violate community norms or community rules to the extent of earning a timeout. they learn from their mistake and don’t do that again. result: a community member in good standing.

  2. same as one, except they don’t learn from their mistake and keep on doing it. result: eventual banning.

  3. someone is a reasonable happy mutant except on one issue about which they get so strident and so worked up they often get a timeout or skirt the edge of a timeout any time the subject comes up. result: “you know how xyz is about that subject. they’re pretty reasonable on most things but on that issue they’re a complete and total loon about it.”


I’m very much against anything we could give someone disruptive to the community that they could later consider a badge of pride.

Agreed. Public topics aren’t private discussions between individuals. if someone makes a comment that deserves a response, respond. Just because that specific individual can’t respond back (they can, of course, read what you wrote!), that doesn’t mean someone else might not have a response for you.

I’m not a fan of looking at discussions as an engagement between two people that others interject upon, for example. a fly-by-night poster who comes, leaves a valuable comment, then never visits the BBS again is just as valid a source to reply to as our most prolific poster - it’s the content of the post that matters, IMHO.


I’m not a fan of people egotistically using others’ posts as foils to push their own ideas while really not having any intention of ever engaging with the ideas contained in the posts of the people they are ostensibly replying to.

Nobody likes to be somebody else’s unwilling puppet; if someone’s ego is too fragile and bloated to bear engaging in honest discussion with someone else, that person should not reply directly to another post, but reply to the post topic instead.


“Reply to what I mean, not what I say” is, sadly, not sound moderation policy. Posts are public, and are subject to others interpretation of them even if you would prefer otherwise (of course, as long as such replies are otherwise on-topic!).

Anyway, in the confines of this discussion as it relates to moderation, I agree with @codinghorror that calling attention to those who behave badly by offering them a visible indication of their deeds is probably unwise.


Like’d for your last paragraph, because I agree with that part.

I’m not asking anyone to read other people’s minds or intent. I’m being snide about people who “play to the peanut gallery” while superficially pretending to converse. It was in response specifically to this:

If you don’t want to engage with a person, don’t reply to their post. Reply to the topic post and say what you want to say without reference to people you do not want to talk to. Polite public discourse is not impossible to achieve.


Despite my now-deleted throwaway joke on the topic, that makes perfect sense. A certain type of troll takes a perverse pride in the badges of shame he’s “awarded”.

That said, I would see nothing wrong with such badges, awarded manually or by analytics-driven algorithm, appearing in the back-end dashboards of the mods, if only to make their lives easier.


That happens for mods. As I mentioned, it also happens for anyone who’s ever been suspended if you drill-down to their profile.


@anon30760835 has been asked not to return to the BBS. Fully half of the moderation workload over the last week has been cleaning up derailing conversations started by this user, the majority of which are either in violation of our community guidelines or trying to use the letter of the guidelines to override the spirit of them. This was not, by a long shot, the first set of warnings or suspensions for this behaviour, spanning multiple usernames.

Their account was also anonymized post-suspension at their request.

We wish them all the best.

Watch: Vintage tank accidentally flips off ramp at military parade in Russia

That was what I thought was going on here, and it was why I asked. I thought maybe there was negative score-boarding going on with all the timeouts.

I apologize for bringing it up.


That account was better in the beginning when they stuck to moose and squirrel jokes.