Post by Simon Blake
The existing process for dealing with idiocy in varying degrees relies
on the issuing of warnings. [....] One achieve that would be to move
from having a single list administrator to having more than one. [...]
Rather than moderate the content, why not just close list membership?
[delete all; add only "genuine NZ network operators"]
I'm not sure if I officially get a say (I probably don't count technically
count as a "genuine NZ network operator"), but I've been around the 'net
a fair while now, and I'm opinionated, so I'm going to have one anyway.
Some points in vague order:
- I know of a bunch of people who are not technically "genuine NZ
network operators" who benefit from reading the list (and more have
posted in this thread) -- "up and coming" people, people loosely
related to network operation who wish to stay "in touch" with what is
going on (I'm probably most accurately in that category), etc.
- For the most part those people get the benefit from reading, rather
than posting to the list; "read only" access might well be sufficient
99% of the time for them.
- Following a list (in "real time") by reading archives on the Interweb
sucks. Screen scraping off the archives of a mailing list that are
on a web page into email again to make it easier to follow is rather
baroque. (But better than trying to follow discussions in real time
on the Interweb; seems 20 years of UI discoveries got thrown out when the
WWW got invented....)
- People who "listen but don't talk" don't create much of a disturbance
to the list operation. There aren't really (m)any secrets where
public knowledge in "real time" would be an issue.
- So if there needs to be moderation (note: I've not yet expressed a
view), then it need only be on the posting side. "Read only"
subscriptions could be left open to "those who can understand the
content" or similar with no obvious downside.
- Moderation of all postings is very disruptive to discussion
particularly of things happening in real time (not to mention a high
load on the moderator(s))
- Therefore it is probably desirable that as few postings as possible
be moderated, without allowing the list to be flooded with large
volumes of off topic stuff.
- The set of people who post (on topic) often is relatively small, and
relatively static, and could probably be maintained by hand by a small
(eg, one person) team of moderators.
- So if there is to be moderation (note: still not expressing a view)
a potentially more workable solution is not to moderate who can join
the list read-only; just to moderate who can post, and "hand moderate"
the remaining posts. People posting a few good posts would be added
to the "can post without additional moderation" list.
Over a short period of time (especially with pre-seeding) those
posting "on topic" messages would get put on the "can post without
additional moderation" list, and that list would be fairly static.
This should be relatively non-intrustrive, and relatively non-demanding
on moderator time.
This basically boils down to Simon (Blake)'s proposal, but with the
restriction being on "posting access" only. The only real catch is
"when good posters go bad", which could perhaps be dealt with in the
same way as now (but with the implicit addition that their newly
invented addresses would not immediately gain posting access).
As to the original question:
- I lean towards the point of view that this has basically been a
one-shot deal and going closed-list/all-moderated/etc over it is
probably an over-reaction. If people would stop feeding the trolls
(even off list) then it'll probably all die a natural death.
- As such I'm not particularly in favour of moderation.
- With a little arm twisting I would be willing to be one of a team of
moderators for the list (on a "if it needs to be done, and no one
else is doing it" basis). I could recite a list of reasons why I'm
qualified, but what it boils down to is that I've been about the NZ
Internet for quite a while, seen my share of flame wars, etc, but don't
work at any network operators so would hopefully be seen as neutral.
(As I said above, I'd rather it wasn't moderated. But if it is, I'm
willing to help out if necessary)