This is a horrible feature which promotes bullying and suppression of unpopular opinions. If something is against the rules of the board, then there are moderators that can remove it. Flagging by the community means people can flag opinions they don’t like and people will.
Users can flag and the post could be hidden, but the moderators will be notified and can take actions.
I am no expert on discourse but I think the moderators can see who was flagging and can act on malicious flagging.
You probably make this in response of the recent flagging of a user in What we plan to remove in Plasma 6
That user was already warned by the moderators and is now suspended. This was likely because of moderator intervention and not just because of flagging.
Long story short, I think the system is working as intended.
I’m not disagreeing with any specific moderating decision. Recently a post I had made weeks earlier, which was a lame joke some people had thought I was trying to be insulting, was flagged and hidden. It was them manually unhidden by a mod a while later. Again, I am not bothered by that specific incident. It’s just that process can be abused by people wanting to shut down a discussion by disrupting it. Even if you can spot habitual flaggers, they won’t be noticed as that the first number of times.
Users are free to flag content and then moderators can decide what to do with it. Sometimes moderators hide the post. Sometimes if the user is acting like a real jerk and doesn’t respond to repeated requests to be nicer, they get banned.
Users who flag too many posts that are totally fine will themselves be asked to knock it off, or else the above will apply to them too.
That’s the way content moderation works in online forums. So yeah, the system is working as intended.
Are moderators hiding the posts or are they automatically being hidden when the flags reach a numerical threshold? It’s looks like the latter from the text notice.
As far as I’m aware, it’s a manual thing that moderators have to explicitly do, not automatic.
This is an automated private message you get when it happens
I later got a message telling me a “staff member” had “unhidden” it.
I don’t see how this feature promotes bullying, but whatever. See the moderation guide where it explains how the feature works:
Posts with 3 flags will be automatically hidden without waiting for moderator action.
And yes, there’s a limit to prevent people from bullying:
Yes, there is a limit on the number of flags a user can use per day that’s set by the
max flags per daysite setting. There are also some related
... flags per day multipliersite settings that control how many flags users from different trust levels are able to use.
Either way, if someone is abusing flags that’s a problem for the moderators
Ah, I was wrong, sorry.
But I agree with @redstrate about this not amounting to bullying. If multiple people are objecting to something you say, it’s probably a problem with you, not them. And if it is a problem with them because they’re abusing flags, moderators need to fix that problem so it doesn’t keep happening.
FWIW every flagged post I’ve been asked to review has indeed had a problem with it, be it rudeness, insulting behavior, spam, refusing to listen to repeated requests to change behavior, etc. I haven’t seen it being used to silence people doing nothing wrong.
In addition to the limit for flagging. Each user has some sort of points and discourse shows the admin how useful the flags that user has made been useful for them. For example if a person is flagging for abusing the system, when moderators see their profile or even when the flagged post is shown they get to see how many helpful flags a person has made. If a person has made too many flags it leads to larger number of non useful flags and the mods can see that history and decide. You can read about this feature here and here
Then there is also a dashboard to check who has most disagreed flagging so that moderators can talk to that person who is flagging wrong things constantly.
Discourse has some of the best thought out moderation tools that I have seen in the forum software. Like others I do not see how it promotes bullying.
What’s the point of that? Is that how China’s social credit system works? I don’t care about flagging, I was talking about the text that hides a post just because some users said so.
That doesn’t even make sense, what if the forum gets spam attacked. The amount of flags is limited just to mitigate the flaw of the stupid post hiding feature? It doesn’t promote bullying but there is a limit to prevent bullying…
It is not like social credit system. I know you are passionate about this topic and agitated due to the post being hidden. But please debate in good faith. The post will only stay hidden until a moderator reviews it.
And the point of showing number of helpful flags given by the users is to make informed decision and weed out flags by abusers. The issue of abuse is suggested here by you and I am saying that discourse has a mechanism which helps moderators to spot this abuse. Chinese govt or chinese society is not related anywhere here.
There are other measures in discourse to prevent that. A new user has fairly limited powers and options. They can only make few number of posts, flags likes etc. There is even an option to hold of a new user account which seem suspicious based on certain activity like filling nonsensical things or links in the bio. adding too many links to some website etc. So a single lone spammer is caught before making any harm. Even if there is an enterprise level of DDOS and spam attack targeted here. The moderators and admins will be notified and they will take appropriate action.
Your problem is not because of you think it is abuse or attack on the forum or anything, you are more concerned about the fact that your post or somebody else’s post is hidden. Which again to reiterate is a temporary measure and if the post is good will be restored by the mods. It is not in anyway a permanent deletion or hiding of the post.
@clancularius over the long term, you probably wouldn’t prefer a forum where the tools and social norms around moderation are weak. What happens is that the loudest jerks take over and all the normal people disappear, leaving the forum an ever-more-polarized place where the few remaining trolls and bitter curmudgeons spend all day insulting one another. I’ve seen it happen many times.
The comparison to China’s social credit system is misplaced because this forum is private property, not a government. What happens in this forum doesn’t determine where you can get a job, whether you get targeted for police harassment, and who will date you.
If you just can’t accept this forum’s moderation tools and norms, you’re welcome to find another more lightly moderated forum to discuss KDE things.
Having some league table for how well the mods agree with how people press a button is unhinged. So is requesting to debate in good faith, immediately after straw manning. People are telling me this system doesn’t facilitate bullying then I am being told the systems the board has in place to mitigate the bullying that this feature apparently doesn’t do. Are people actually going to be blocked if they press the flag button in a way that is not approved of?
by which point the damage is done and someone is alienated.
You are the most prolific poster who posts twice as much as #2 in the list and you are just shy of telling me to f off here. You were saying? I never said I wanted a forum where moderation is weak, you should focus on what is there, not what isn’t.
I was fine with the previous forum that most of the kde devs didn’t much bother with but decided to close down without mentioning it there and here we are with you, the loudest one, telling people to leave if they don’t like something.
What is the straw man here please enlighten me. I never brought the chinese govt analogy in this debate it was you. I do not see any bullying in the current system. Also if your post is flagged by multiple people then it is hidden but it is not hidden permanently. How is that blocking or alienating? If for some reason people are wrongly flagging your post then mods will question those who flagged your post. If your post is genuinely spam it is deleted or hidden by the mods. Why would anyone be alienated just because their post was hidden for a few hours please enlighten us? What damage are they taking by their post being up for a genuine spam review for a few hours?
If you feel you are getting bullied you have other remedies ask the admins or message the mods about the bullying with proof.
Are you saying now one should flag your post no matter what? And your post gets hidden because it may be damaging the forum, you may very well be damaging or abusing the forum so the forum has a form of defence against that. Flags are not only used for abuse they are used for genuine reason to protect the community from spammers.
I think you are arguing in bad faith here without any reason or good points, it is like talking to a wall so I am going to mute this thread for myself. Good luck with your activism.
I’m saying you should not pull up finished discussions just to patronise and insult people calling them deceptive.
@clancularius, when I look at your post history, I see a number of valuable contributions on this forum, but also a good deal of negative behavior:
- In KDE For Activists you argued rudely and in bad faith, inviting negative responses which you then criticized people for.
- In R/kde can't be accessed you did the same thing again and additionally accused people of doing things they did not do.
- And now here in this thread you’re doing it again. In addition, you’ve called the forum software “unhinged” and compared it to a tool of oppression used by the Chinese Communist Party. And you’re claiming that it promotes bullying while engaging in bullying behavior yourself.
I’d like to ask you to stop this behavior. It may be that you don’t even see it, but it’s clearly there because when you argue, the way you do it is provoking negative reactions in others and and generating negativity on this forum. That worsens the atmosphere for everyone, and it’s not what we want for this forum.
I’m not asking you to leave or self-censor. Just be nicer, debate kindly, give people the benefit of the doubt, consider other people’s responses instead of digging in your heels and making ever more extreme arguments, etc. If you can do that, you’re welcome to stay here. If not, then you’ll keep bouncing off of people and eventually get banned. This isn’t a threat, it’s simply a description of the implicit social contract of online forums.
Posting something you don’t agree with doesn’t constitute “bad faith”, I suggest you learn the meaning of the term and quit insulting people with it. Being nice is something you should start with before demanding it off other people.
Social credit is a point score based on how a person’s behaviour aligns with ideals of the governing body, I don’t think that’s a bad analogy for what I was being shown.
Imagine that I don’t quite believe that
Well I’m afraid that wasn’t quite the response I was hoping for. But seeing the social contract as a threat is a big red flag.
If you’re not willing to accept the social contract, and instead insist on continuing to argue, nitpick, and accuse me of doing the thing that you’ve been doing, then I think I’m going to have to remember the old advice of “when people show you who they are, believe them”. Your account is now suspended indefinitely. I’m sorry it had to come to this.
If there was ever a definition of bad faith, here it is.