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Post Info TOPIC: Cat's moderation questions

Head Chef

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Cat's moderation questions

Sorry I've been busy guys. I don't know the particulars of the concerns other than what is contained here.

The entirety of the post in question, and the post complaining about it, are now contained in the thread concerning them.

Perhaps this is a way to examine how we accomplish due dilligence in the moderation process.

I'm hoping that we can get some valuable input on the moderation process from this.

1. Is it possible to "lock" a thread and then to later "unlock" it again?

Threads can be closed and reopened.

2. Can posts or comments that have been deleted or edited by a moderator be reinstated (in other words, does the forum have pre-moderation archival capability?

Posts that have been deleted can be reinstated. I'm not sure if they time out at some point, but hopefully most moderation discussions will be resolved quickly.

3. Can threads be merged?

I haven't seen a way to do that yet, but that does not mean that there isn't a way. Up until today I didn't think that there was a method to restore deleted comments.

If #1 is possible, maybe in the future we can simply temporarily lock the thread until the moderator panel can come to a consensus, with just a note stating what specific content is pending review. If #3 is possible, then a "temporary" clone of the locked thread could be spawned to allow discussion continuity on the other topics in the thread if necessary.

I would be really hesitant to do this. I'm not sure if there is a way to merge threads. I don't want to shut off an entire discussion for a matter like the one in question. If I believe that a comment or comments are moderatable, I don't want to leave them there for fear of the contention growing.

Ultimately, this is kind of a little example of what I was thinking we could work through as a community via the Mediation process. It is going to take some time to get used to, since so many of us think "Nauvoo", which isn't all wrong, but we'll need to get used to expanding our approach to include this new paradigm. If there are 4 of us who are moderators thus far (or 3 moderators and 1 administrator), do we not have a body large enough to be a quorum so to speak?

Hopefully this will help us to have a better idea for how to moderate the forum, and then we can add those rules or guidelines to the rules.

In this case in question, I'm happy to invite input from the moderators (and anyone else for that matter), but I think it might be an unwelcome burden, potentially, on some moderators. No one has expressed interest yet in being on the committee. At least one has expressed himself in a manner that might express disinterest. I don't want to lay the burden of having to make a decision on those who may not want the responsibility.

Truth be told, I do not want to be a regular moderator for the political area. But then again, I don't want to name a moderator to that area just for the sake of having a moderator. I think that is the most sensitive area of the forum, and it'll be the most important moderator decision. So for now I'll be main moderator there, instead of backup moderator.
BTW, that statement is not a reflection on any of the moderators. None of them expressed interest in moderating the political section of the website. Some of them expressed active disinterest.

If ye love wealth better than liberty, the tranquility of servitude than the animated contest of freedom, go from us in peace. May your chains sit lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that you were our countrymen!
- Samuel Adams

Understander of unimportant things

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Posts: 4126

Here are a couple ideas. I had thought of them earlier, if I had not implicitly or explicitly talked about them in the draft on moderation and mediation process I sent over to you.

If it causes too much disruption to temporarily lock a thread in whole, then maybe we can set up a "Quarantine Area" where the particular posts under review can be temporarily tabled and still be viewed publicly, but will be out of the "discussion" while under review. Are moderators able to move items?

Part of the responsibilities of those who are moderators here should include review as a panel or committee when one of the other moderators needs some other eyes prior to making a decision that could be seen as arbitrary. This is part of the check and balance necessary to prevent or lessen the feelings of being slighted. We've been doing a pretty good job of at least publicly indicating when a moderation action has occured, but that is only 1/2 of the check and balance. If a moderator is not comfortable being on the panel / committee for these sort of activities, then we can invite non-moderator forum members who can be impartial to a specific case to be an ad hoc panel member. That was included in the Mediation process notes.

The key is transparency in all that is done by moderators, I think. I may be wrong, but I think that this will help all feel like we all are indeed equals in this forum, even if some have "powers" vested in them that others do not.

Anyway, I guess we'll all talk about it in the next couple days and figure out how to work in the best fashion for everyone.

PF, are you okay for the time being? Do you have any suggestions?

It seems to me the only thing you've learned is that Caesar is a "salad dressing dude."
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