Onward, Caffeine Soldiers!

This is not a blogger's blog, this is a commenter's blog.
Here's to all brave commenters who really fight the battles of the blogosphere - you're my cup of coffee!
I raise my mug to salute you!

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Location: Germany

A proud member of the reality based commentosphere since 2000. You can find my two Eurocent mainly at liberal and centrist discussion threads, but also at some other surprising places. Also tweeting now, as user "graygoods".

Saturday, October 14, 2006

On 'Moderation'

The following mod response, targetted at Jurassicpork, a commenter I know as an engaging and serious person and far from being a troll, is an example of awful moderation. This should be a warning sign for blog owners to check if the people they gave mod powers are suited for the task:

"Oh, Jurassic Pork,


I would almost think you were serious.

A note: In the moderation queue, no one can hear you scream.

Jane will never see your comment. She's in L.A. tonight partying with Valerie and Joe Wilson, R.E.M., and Green Day and I am going to delete it long before she ever sees it.

You are a sad, sad little man.

Hope that hiatus from blogging is working out for you. You were never meant for our line of work.

Ta taaaaaaaaaa,
Welcome to Pottersville: He Who Sleeps With Firedogs Wakes Up With Trolls

I'm not against moderation in general. At bigger blogs, mods are essential for maintaining a repectful level of discussion that won't turn away readers who are interested in 'adding their two cent'. But it's obvious that mods have to be chosen carefully. People who use deleting and editing power to surpress comments that merely challenge their own views are totally unfit for the job.
For successful moderation, a blog should fulfill four major requirements:

* Clear guidelines for commenters and mods, placed or linked at a prominent space in the blog.

* Moderators should be signed as such (for example, "*ilson, Moderator")

* The process of editing and deleting comments should be transparent for the readers ('Comment deleted because of inappropriate personal attacks. Pls see guidelines' or 'Comment edited because of inappropriate language.')

* The system should allow mod actions to be supervised so that the blog owner can be sure that his mods work in the best interests of the blog.

Sadly, FDL doesn't meet a single one of these requirements. As a result, the blog is one of the worst examples of arbitrary, intransparent moderation with the mods acting like small dictators, drunken with their power.