User ignore feature now in beta


I think this is important to note. I’ve seen comments made about how ignoring users could cause them to make derogatory comments or otherwise make unwelcome comments about that user, and the user would never know. The fact is, such posts are quickly flagged, usually by multiple people. No one is going to get away with that behaviour just because they are on ignore. Ignore does not enable such behaviour or otherwise make such behaviour easier. It will get noticed, flagged, removed, with possible further action against the poster if warranted.


I forget if I mentioned this previously, but I think that’s because some people can’t handle criticism/disagreement.

Under the old system they could wave a magic wand and that person can never disagree with them.

Under the new system, they won’t be able to see the disagreement.

Hence the weeping and gnashing of teeth.

I agree we have a good community, and I know I will endeavor to flag anyone I think is using the fact they’re ignored to be shitty. I think many others feel the same way.


harassment is not tolerated here as a general thing and the fact that some people act in such a fashion is no slur against moderation here because, despite excellent work by our moderator and by the community, no one can be simultaneously on all threads at all times.

harassment virtually never happens to me but i see it from time to time and flag it when i see it happen, as do most of us who care about the community.


Seems to work okay.


Small UI improvement: you can select mute and ignore from the user page now in a drop-down menu.

This is somewhat anologous to setting your notification level for a topic, or a category. Except in this case you’re setting the notification level for a… user.


This is now complete @orenwolf with duration selection when people are added to ignore:

This dialog also informs you that all ignores do eventually expire.

You are clear, from a tooling perspective, to begin getting rid of the “non-contact agreement” part of the moderator’s job! :tada:

Changes to mod policy re: Ignore feature

Thanks once again. Nice interface work, too. A couple of questions:

  1. If we already had people on Ignore before implementation of this feature, is it defaulted to the maximum four months?

  2. Will we receive some kind of reminder notification (perhaps a DM?) a week or a day or what have you before an Ignore is about to expire?

Unfortunately, it’s still somewhat necessary despite this excellent start. The sort of user who ends up being Ignored will still attempt to engage the other person through Likes, @ and non-@ name mentions, and other bad-faith tactics.

Maybe the next step in terms of tooling is an integrated (with this feature) or separate* flag for a standard (as in terms being defined by the mods) “non-engagement agreement” between two users (unilaterally or bilaterally imposed). It would be hard to enforce such an agreement programatically (one expects that the community would end up policing violations), but at least it would save @orenwolf the hassle of initiating the “agreement” in DMs and constantly re-stating the terms.

[* I think they should be separate. I’ve had “non-engage agreements” with people whose comments I still want to monitor, and also Ignore people I’ve never asked not to engage me.]


Yes, as I already indicated upstream.

No. The idea is you start seeing this person’s posts again organically (after max 4 months, since that’s the max duration of an ignore) and decide at that time if they’ve “changed”, or if you have. You can re-ignore as many times as you like, forever, of course.

Doesn’t matter, since an ignore is also an implied mute. You’d never see any of those notifications, or their posts.

No, it is not. Well, it shouldn’t be.


Sorry, missed that. Thanks for repeating it.

Makes sense. If it’s important enough for the person to maintain the Ignore, he’ll add it to his calendar. Done.

But others will, and if they’re not aware of the Ignore or Mute they might assume that the person is simply reluctant to respond.

I’ll leave that for @orenwolf to weigh in on, but I disagree based on the behaviour I’ve observed here from some users over the years. An alternative might be for him to set up a pinned topic on it (or addendum to the FAQ) that lays out the standard terms of a non-engage agreement, and then continue doing things as we have via DMs copied to him.


The reality is, in the end, this is a public forum. One of the reasons we removed the explicitly provided lounge was we didn’t want to have another area we provided to a certain class of user, regardless of criteria. That also means we really don’t want to tell users they can post / reply to only certain posts, either. That’s the primary issue we have with “non-engagement” agreements.

To that end, the goal I had in mind for the ignore feature was to ensure that if a user didn’t want to interact with another user, ignoring them would take care of that - you see their posts only if you want to, and they can’t notify you otherwise (and, as mentioned, not seeing their comments quoted in replies is a v2.0 feature that’s coming).

How someone is responding / interpreting a comment is not something we ever want to moderate. Everyone knows that text by nature is not as expressive as direct human-human communication and misinterpreting meaning and intent is a fact of life of any text-based medium. Posting anything anywhere runs the risk of your posts being misconstrued, and needing to elaborate or reword a response (or offer a follow-up) is something a poster needs to be prepared for. Not responding to someone is going to be interpreted by the reader any number of ways, and there is no technological measure that’s going to address that.

If you post here, anyone will be able to respond within our guidelines to your post. If you do not want to see their responses, this system has been created to allow you to make that choice, and that includes being notified of likes or other notifications from those users.

To that end, and with the noted v2.0 caveat above, I agree that the Ignore feature does seem to enable a user at this point to ignore another poster if they so wish, and pending any reports of anything that’s been overlooked, my intention is to remove our “non-engagement” policy shortly, along with making it clear that asking a user to not respond to you will be considered flaggable from that point onward. That’s what ignore will be for.

(I’d also like to suggest an RFE for version 2: The ability to hide a users replies in a specific post, as I’ve often seen users talking past each other in specific topics where it’s pretty clear from the sidelines that a breakthrough isn’t coming between them :slight_smile: )


Is there or will there be provision in place for an Ignored user being programmatically prevented by the system from Replying to or Quoting the user who’s Ignoring him?* This wouldn’t prevent all bad-faith behaviour by the Ignored user, but it would send a strong message (especially to the newbies).

I’d really like that as well. There are certain users who are valuable community members in most topics but who go off the rails (taking the rest of the topic with it) into bad faith territory on their hobbyhorse issue. It would be great to choose to hide their replies for the duration of a given topic.

[* this may have been discussed above but was never confirmed by the powers that be.]


Well that’s unfortunate.

One feature request is that when it says something is hidden I’d love for it to show who is hidden.

Maybe this is an edge case but there’s some folks I choose to ignore because I generally find their posts exhausting to read but I don’t really have anything against them, and sometimes I’d like to read their posts depending on the thread or context.

With today’s implementation it’s a crap shoot of expanding a hidden post whether it’s legitimately someone I never want to interact with or someone I just don’t want to read most of the time.


Absolutely not. You can choose not to read the responses of a user, but having a list you can put users on that restricts the actual replies they can make is precisely the probem that exists today with the current system. Users should not be restricted from posting a response that is within the guidelines, that’s what a public forum is.

If a user violates the guidelines, whether by attacking or bullying a specific user, or in general behaviour, the post will undoubtedly be flagged and action taken on the posts and/or user, just as is the case today.

If you post something here, anyone has a right to respectfully reply to it.


Ok. I was thinking that if Ignore was going to replace the current “do-not-engage” agreements and lighten your workload that this would be useful.

I’m looking at this is terms of clarity for the community and a flow of discussions that makes sense to everyone (no "why isn’t this active and opinionated commenter not responding to this bad|good point in the reply).

Perhaps instead a public notice might be placed above the Reply or Quote in question to the effect that “[user that this commenter is [Replying to|Quoting]] is Ignoring [this commenter]]”? That way everyone else following the topic better understands the terms of the discussion.


As someone who’s been on the receiving end of repeated unwanted attention, I have to strongly disagree there.

Still, these new features are better than nothing at all.


So right now, a lot of the discussions that end up with “Do not reply to me further” or requests for DNE agreements start with an argument in a topic, where the users are clearly not seeing each others points, and usually devolve into arguments that get flagged and deleted.

Really in a perfect world, one user or the other would step away from the conversation and just stop responding and move on. In the real world, we are human (@Flossaluzitarin notwithstanding…) , many of us are prone to the “someone is WRONG on the internet” drive (myself included) and the hope is the ignore feature will be an outlet for some of that (and also why I think ignoring folks for a specific topic might be useful).

As I said, we’re not going to stop speculation as to why someone did or didn’t respond, as there are many reasons why that might be so for any given post. And of course, one of the great features of discourse’s non-threaded model is that anyone can jump in to any discussion topic and continue a string of responses anyway.

We’re not going to “fix” the pitfalls of asynchronous text-based communication here. But perhaps we can help folks keep away from others who, for whatever reason, just keep pressing their buttons, or help keep discussions from devolving into flaggable posts that often delete a lot of other posts as collateral damage as a result.


I knew it!


Do you mean hide quotes from an ignored user inside a post by a user you aren’t ignoring? That is planned as I’ve said earlier in the topic here.

Why would this matter? If you can’t see the reply or be notified about it, what difference does it make if an ignored user replies to you?

I guess this is kind of a stepping stone argument to the Twitter concept of block, which forces your posts to be hidden from the other person as well. That’s a rather different beast and probably should be a completely different meta topic…

I agree, but I can’t see a way to implement that which doesn’t accidentally elevate ignore to “the easiest button to press” and … I am really quite opposed to that. I suggest ignore until later today or tomorrow, which is now possible, is functionally similar and easier to understand:


One of the weaknesses of Twitter’s system is that you can’t scope blocks or mutes by time. You either block someone for an eternity, or not at all…


People following the topic might wonder why Ignorer isn’t responding to Ignoree’s good or bad point. Especially if Ignorer generally responds to such points.

A Twitter-like Block would be a clever alternate solution to explore, but as you imply it’s non-trivial to implement and should be a separate discussion.

That’s another clever solution. If person X starts riding his hobbyhorse issue in one topic they’re Ignored BBS-wide for the given duration. If possible, I’d suggest adding a 5-day Ignore duration option to track with the the standard topic lifespan.


Is it really healthy for Ignorer to respond to every instance of X, all the time? I don’t think it is. Not at all.

Pick your battles.