Controversial idea: post moderation on by default

Arantor

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Controversial idea: post moderation on by default
« on September 4th, 2012, 09:24 PM »
I wondered, would it be worth shipping with a moderation rule in by default where people with less than 5 posts (who aren't moderators) are automatically post moderated?

I suspect it would encourage people to understand how the system works by having a working example in there by default?

For those coming from SMF: I totally gutted the post moderation system to be rules-based. For example:
 * someone tries to make a new post
 * moderate the post if:
   1) they have less than 5 posts
   2) they are not an Administrator, Global Moderator or Board Moderator

There are other permutations, for example you can push it to moderation if there's x number of links posted, or the user is in other groups or has a given warning level or the post contains certain words. It doesn't really matter exactly what, at this stage, just wondering if it should ship with a default rule set up.
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spoogs

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Stick a fork in it SMF

Oracle

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Re: Controversial idea: post moderation on by default
« Reply #2, on September 4th, 2012, 10:34 PM »
Quote from Arantor on September 4th, 2012, 09:24 PM
I wondered, would it be worth shipping with a moderation rule in by default where people with less than 5 posts (who aren't moderators) are automatically post moderated?

I suspect it would encourage people to understand how the system works by having a working example in there by default?

For those coming from SMF: I totally gutted the post moderation system to be rules-based. For example:
 * someone tries to make a new post
 * moderate the post if:
   1) they have less than 5 posts
   2) they are not an Administrator, Global Moderator or Board Moderator

There are other permutations, for example you can push it to moderation if there's x number of links posted, or the user is in other groups or has a given warning level or the post contains certain words. It doesn't really matter exactly what, at this stage, just wondering if it should ship with a default rule set up.
Again, do what you like with this Pete, but from my perspective I imposed a 2 post count restriction on new members and it caused nothing but confusion so reinstated to zero. I feel you should lay out the welcome mat for newbys not an obstacle course. make it as easy as possible for them to sign up and get going as quickly as possible.

Arantor

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Re: Controversial idea: post moderation on by default
« Reply #3, on September 4th, 2012, 11:52 PM »
Why did it cause confusion, exactly?

Is it really an obstacle course to say 'the first couple of posts will be reviewed by a moderator'? Or, even, just moderate the post if the first couple of posts contain a link? How often does the average *legitimate* user sign up and make a post with links in? Doubly so if there's a message just above the post to say that it is awaiting approval by a moderator...

I don't see this being a barrier, and generally people that are stopped by *that* barrier just aren't going to be good forum members. You can extend things too far for them.

Pandos

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Re: Controversial idea: post moderation on by default
« Reply #4, on September 5th, 2012, 08:07 AM »
If it comes to post moderation there will be a much better way:
For user under 5 posts it is prohibitet to post links in his post.
If so, the posting will be needed to moderate.


Also edit of postings. Forbidden by default for the first 5 posts.


Don't know how difficult it is to implement. But IMHO this will prevent 90% of spam.
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Nao

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Re: Controversial idea: post moderation on by default
« Reply #5, on September 5th, 2012, 08:42 AM »
Just my humble opinion...

- I've always said that I'm not too fond of the fact that the post moderation flag depends exclusively on moderation rules. This makes it impossible to add an 'Unapprove' button to the posts, among other things.

- I have no qualms with post moderation being set by default (mostly as per the above), but it would be cleaner if such a rule was adopted (if not already written?): "For a user's first 10 posts, approve the post only if it has no link in it. If it has a link, unapprove it. If a user's post is moderated and approved, remove the moderation flag from them."
Basically, the idea is that if a user goes through their first post with a link with no issues, it's unlikely they're a spammer...
Also, we should tell them that at post time. (Not at submit time or never ;))

Arantor

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Re: Controversial idea: post moderation on by default
« Reply #6, on September 5th, 2012, 12:56 PM »
Firstly, how you're thinking is not how it works. Let's rewrite that logic in how the system actually works.

"Moderate the post if it contains a link, and if the user has less than 10 posts."

The system has never been designed to flag users the way you have in mind, having users be flagged as being moderated, and I'm increasingly not a fan of unapproved as a concept.

Since the same rule relies on post count, and that moderated posts do not bump post count, this would work exactly as expected.

As for your point, that's one of the downsides to the moderation filters system is that there isn't a good way to display text to the user about whether their post will be moderated (or blocked) especially if one of the rules is something like "moderate if the post contains 'fuck'" (the other is having to reparse the moderation rules potentially every thread since even quick reply would need that too, and that's a big deal)

Pandos

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Re: Controversial idea: post moderation on by default
« Reply #7, on September 5th, 2012, 01:16 PM »
Please correct me if i'm wrong with my idea.


Perhaps we should add an extra field in the permissons table (e.g. post_url).
Then do a check for allowed membergrous and make sure that only TLD's are filtered.


Parse BBCode and filter such TLD's with regex.


Finally show a message to this poster that he has no rights to post links.


Wasn't ther a mod for phpbb?
Will try to find it.




Nao

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Re: Controversial idea: post moderation on by default
« Reply #9, on September 5th, 2012, 05:15 PM »
Quote from Arantor on September 5th, 2012, 12:56 PM
The system has never been designed to flag users the way you have in mind, having users be flagged as being moderated, and I'm increasingly not a fan of unapproved as a concept.
Well, there's only one flag available to show a post or not, and it's 'approved'... Mesays we could even rename it to 'show' or something, that way I'm sure you can live with the fact that it could hold such values as 'show', 'hide_because_i_want_that', 'hide_because_unapproved' and 'hide_because_everyone_downvoted_it', etc...
Quote
Since the same rule relies on post count, and that moderated posts do not bump post count, this would work exactly as expected.
Hmm, if moderated posts don't bump post count, then we could easily set the above rule to 'less than 1 post'... No?
(And anyway, even if these posts did increase post count, 1 would be a suitable limit to me, if only because usually the very first post a spammer will send is a spam post... They usually don't stick around sending fake posts. It takes them too much time I guess.)
Quote
As for your point, that's one of the downsides to the moderation filters system is that there isn't a good way to display text to the user about whether their post will be moderated (or blocked) especially if one of the rules is something like "moderate if the post contains 'fuck'" (the other is having to reparse the moderation rules potentially every thread since even quick reply would need that too, and that's a big deal)
Nope, nope... Forget that idea then.

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Arantor

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Re: Controversial idea: post moderation on by default
« Reply #12, on September 5th, 2012, 09:06 PM »
Pandos, there is no need for any regex or such behaviour. The moderation filters setup is designed to allow admins to construct behaviour around moderating or preventing a post against all sorts of criteria. You can moderate a post if it contains too many links, or deny it, or even limit it by member group or post count or all kinds of things.

Heck, you could construct a bizarre rule that only applies to specific members, posting in a specific board, when a post contains 3+ links and the word "buttmonkey" if you wanted. Each of these rules is optional and configurable.

Nao, I'm OK with renaming the column, I'm not OK with the idea of randomly hiding a post that was visible before. The idea of the filters system is to try and automate content being reviewed by a moderator before being public, not hiding it again after. If you want to hide it, delete it, don't "unapprove" it, they're semantically and practically different.

Yes, a rule that works on the first post only would work exactly as expected, until their first post is approved they have no post count. Trouble is, the spammers are getting better at posting nonsense until they get able to post links. Thus I suggested the rule be moderating any post that contains a link until they reach a post count of 10, odds are that will catch them and in most cases not adversely affect any real uses.
Re: Controversial idea: post moderation on by default
« Reply #13, on September 6th, 2012, 02:51 AM »
OK, there's something I want to add, is why I have a problem with unapprove.

It all stems from the question 'what does unapprove give us?' - the very short answer is nothing that rethinking the recycle bin also wouldn't give us.

Let me explain.

First up, why does the moderation filters stuff expressly dictate post moderation being enabled? Simple: if you have no rules, presumably you never enabled it. No point penalising people for the performance penalty when it isn't necessary. If you add a rule, you're pretty likely (likelier than anything else, to be fair) to put in a moderate rule, so it made sense to me that if you're not in a position where posts can be put on moderation status (because there's no rules), there's also no need to bog everyone down, but if you do add a rule, that implies you expect some posts to get moderated.

The point is to do that mostly without the user having to be too worried about it.

This brings me back to the larger question: under what circumstances would you use unapprove? What facility does it give you?

Well, it gives you the ability to hide a post from everyone else in the thread, and only the moderators can see it (and the author, but that's really a side point, not a major one). What, then, is the difference between an unapproved post and one in the recycle bin? Answer: purely aesthetic ones - you're shown the posts in their original context, and you're shown them in a different interface to the recycle bin. But the result for the bulk of users is that the post is gone.

The only places I've seen unapprove used successfully are *all* to mimic deletions but keep the content inline, i.e. a posher version of the recycle bin.

So, how about we actually drop the screwing about, and more importantly, stop the conflation. We're not talking about a simple show/hide flag. We're talking about message status: visible, moderated, deleted.

Visible posts are normal posts, moderated posts are pending moderation and may be deleted or may be made visible, deleted posts are - well - deleted.

We don't need unapprove then, because the task of unapprove is no longer required - if we don't want a message to be publicly visible, soft-delete it instead. (And always soft delete as standard, never directly perma-delete), the result for the end user is the same, the result for moderators is different, we don't lose any semantic value to anything and we get a better interface out of it. Moderators or people of suitable permission will of course be able to view the actual message should they wish to do so.

But wait, there's more. We get to drop the recycle bin board (something that has been desired for a long time, meaning we don't consume board id 2 arbitrarily), we get to avoid bleeding thread ids with the current moves to a new board, we get to simplify some of the admin UI and logic (anywhere we manually exclude the recycle board for example)

I've had alcohol so I'm aware that my thoughts may not be in the best order, but I think I'm making sense and explaining everything at hand?

spoogs

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Re: Controversial idea: post moderation on by default
« Reply #14, on September 6th, 2012, 03:08 AM »
Interesting there.... I do use the post unapproval mod for SMF for reasons you seem to have covered. It is useful for us in the sense that when a moderator isn't entirely sure if a post is acceptable they would unapprove it and ask other moderators or one of the admins to take a look. If it's agreed that it's a no go it gets deleted otherwise re-approved.