28 votes

Unofficial Weekly Discussion #4 - What is your most "thinking outside the box", "pie in the sky", and/or "out there" idea for Tildes?

Despite me still being a little distracted thanks to WoW Classic and somewhat absent from Tildes lately as a result, since it's been a few weeks since the last Unofficial Weekly Discussion topic, I wanted to make sure to get one posted this week. And since it's been a while, I wanted to try something a bit more lighthearted and fun than usual to get things flowing again. So here it is:

What is your most "thinking outside the box", "pie in the sky" and/or "out there" idea for Tildes?

It doesn't matter whether you think it's really a good idea or not, it will work or not, it would ultimately have a net positive or negative effect, or how impossible it might be to implement; Let's just get the creative juices flowing and start throwing out our "craziest" ideas for the site!

p.s. Once again, let's please try to keep things positive, and keep any criticism purely constructive and friendly so as not to discourage people from participating.


Previous Unofficial Weekly Discussions:

Week #1, #2, #3


Other relevant links:
Donate to Tildes - Tildes Gitlab : Issues Board - Tildes Official Docs

102 comments

  1. [9]
    vili
    Link
    Embrace slowness. Fight the standard social media pitfalls of ephemerality, instant gratification, short-lived noise and addiction loops with everything that you have. Encourage longevity for...

    Embrace slowness. Fight the standard social media pitfalls of ephemerality, instant gratification, short-lived noise and addiction loops with everything that you have.

    Encourage longevity for topics. Don't hide old posts, instead promote them. Keep bringing them back from the dead if there is still juice to be squeezed out.

    Do away with weekly threads that repeat themselves, instead encourage people to keep the conversation going in the same topics, week after week.

    Don't warn people when they are commenting on an old topic. Instead, warn them if they are commenting on something that was posted just now and ask them if they have really thought through what they are about to write. Warn them against knee-jerk reactions.

    Go even further and hide all comments until something like a day or two has passed from the time that the topic was posted, then show the comments all at the same time, initially in random order.

    Do the same, but possibly with slightly shorter quarantine periods, for replies to comments. Create a rhythm of discussion which encourages pondering over your reply before posting it, for days or weeks if that's what is needed.

    Become a social media platform that doesn't discriminate against those who don't want to or don't have the opportunity to be constantly online or available, but would still like to engage in meaningful discussion.

    Don't be just social media. Be slowcial media.

    28 votes
    1. Amarok
      Link Parent
      This one intrigues me. What if it's one topic, but it's reborn a bit each week/month/time period? New music weekly thread posted - but inside, it's just a clean, empty, new comment section. Each...

      Do away with weekly threads that repeat themselves, instead encourage people to keep the conversation going in the same topics, week after week.

      This one intrigues me. What if it's one topic, but it's reborn a bit each week/month/time period?

      New music weekly thread posted - but inside, it's just a clean, empty, new comment section. Each previous week's comments are now a ribbon across the area just above the comments, so you can click to switch to (and comment in) previous weeks discussions. It's just a view filter, really. Maybe there's even a 'flat' mode option that shows it all as one gargantuan thread.

      No more having to include links to the previous week in the current week's text, either - that's tracked automatically now. No need for bots to post threads each week if the topic is set to auto-renew. It can self-bump when it turns over. Sounds like a good case for multiple users to be able to edit it, too, as was mentioned below in another comment chain.

      We need to do something about ancient threads with thousands of comments. Time-sorting makes sense as a next step, at least for some of these weekly thread use cases. Begs the question of what other kinds of topics we may create someday. We have link, self, this would be recurring. I can imagine one for news like reddit's old live threads.

      17 votes
    2. [3]
      balooga
      (edited )
      Link Parent
      I generally like your "slowcial media" angle but I feel like perpetually posting in the same topic and trying to follow a conversation there would get so tedious. This isn't a traditional message...

      Do away with weekly threads that repeat themselves, instead encourage people to keep the conversation going in the same topics, week after week.

      I generally like your "slowcial media" angle but I feel like perpetually posting in the same topic and trying to follow a conversation there would get so tedious. This isn't a traditional message board you can just necrobump and keep alive for hundreds of chronologically ordered pages... discussions here are threaded and sorted by user ranking and algorithmic juju. I think that structure is fundamentally incompatible with drawn-out, perpetual conversation.

      We could use some better systems for managing recurring topics. Auto-scheduling new ones instead of requiring manual posting might be nice. A way to group related recurring topics together could also be cool. With next/previous links to quickly jump through the grouped topics sequentially? Maybe a way to migrate a comment/thread from one topic to another?

      12 votes
      1. [2]
        vili
        Link Parent
        You have a good point there, the design as it stands isn't optimised for long conversations. But algorithmic juju can always been tweaked, as can design. I also don't think that Tildes is...

        This isn't a traditional message board you can just necrobump and keep alive for hundreds of chronologically ordered pages... discussions here are threaded and sorted by user ranking and algorithmic juju. I think that structure is fundamentally incompatible with drawn-out, perpetual conversation.

        You have a good point there, the design as it stands isn't optimised for long conversations. But algorithmic juju can always been tweaked, as can design. I also don't think that Tildes is currently any worse than your typical forum, mailing list or newsgroup when it comes to longer conversations.

        In fact, in some ways what we have here is better. None of the traditional platforms really make it easy to engage in and follow the structure of a conversation, for instance. For that, nested comments that we have here are better than a flat forum structure, as different strands of conversation can live in different sub-threads, rather than competing for attention within a single flat discussion that constantly jumps from one conversational line to another. Nested comment threads do introduce the problem of conversations splintering of course, and they promote one-to-one rather than many-to-many type of conversations, so they are not perfect.

        Similarly, the ability to easily see all new comments within a topic and what conversational threads they belong to is a wonderful tool here, as is being able to effortlessly read through all the previous posts that gave rise to new comments, simply by climbing up the comment thread.

        But there are definitely also features that don't really promote slowness and in-depth discussion. Take this input text form for instance into which I am typing this reply. It's tiny. At least on my desktop browser, it displays a maximum of six lines of text, or about one hundred words. Now, I know that I can easily resize the input box manually, but what the text box is communicating to me subconsciously is that the website expects my replies to be about one hundred words or less. That is not much for thoughtful discussion.

        I'm not criticising though. I don't know if there is a place for "slowcial media" in this world, and whether Tildes could or should be that place. But the OP asked for castles in the sky, and what I sketched above is a castle that I would genuinely love to inhabit one day.

        6 votes
        1. Eylrid
          Link Parent
          There's a forum I used to be active on that allowed switching between a flat view and a nested view. The default was a flat view, so people posted as you would with a flat view: Quote whoever you...

          There's a forum I used to be active on that allowed switching between a flat view and a nested view. The default was a flat view, so people posted as you would with a flat view: Quote whoever you are replying to, unless they were the last comment, and reply to multiple people in one comment rather than making separate comments at the same time to reply to different people. Because of that the nested view was a mess.

          What if we do something similar, but the other way around. The default view would be nested, but you could switch to a flat view to find recent comments. When you find a comment that interests you, you switch back to the nested view so you can see the context and conversation that lead up to it. Replying would only be allowed from the nested view.

          3 votes
    3. suspended
      Link Parent
      These are some great ideas. This one, in particular, is very important imho.

      These are some great ideas.

      Become a social media platform that doesn't discriminate against those who don't want to or don't have the opportunity to be constantly online or available, but would still like to engage in meaningful discussion.

      This one, in particular, is very important imho.

      9 votes
    4. [2]
      spit-evil-olive-tips
      Link Parent
      I think there's a lot of potential here, and it could be implemented in a way that'd be opt-in and unobtrusive to the rest of the site. Right now there's the "activity" sort that bubbles up...

      I think there's a lot of potential here, and it could be implemented in a way that'd be opt-in and unobtrusive to the rest of the site.

      Right now there's the "activity" sort that bubbles up whatever's generating discussion.

      We could add another sort alongside that one, which sorted topics to prioritize "high-quality, slow-moving discussion" rather than simply "any discussion at all".

      For example, topic A has had 20 comments, over the past 24 hours, from multiple different users. Where long comment chains have happened, people have tended to upvote most or all of the entire comment chain, indicating the entire thread is contributing to the discussion.

      Meanwhile, topic B has had 20 comments, but only within the past 2 hours, and 10 of those comments are just two users going back-and-forth. On that especially long comment chain, the votes tend to cluster into two "factions" who only upvote half of the comment thread, indicating they're using votes as an "I agree with this side of the argument" button rather than a "this comment contributes to the discussion" button.

      By the current "activity" sort, if topic B's most recent comment was posted 1 minute later than topic A's most recent comment, it gets ranked higher.

      5 votes
      1. Deimos
        Link Parent
        Looking at voting "clusters" is really interesting. That could be a good thing to try to build into the way the site decides whether or not to bump topics.

        Looking at voting "clusters" is really interesting. That could be a good thing to try to build into the way the site decides whether or not to bump topics.

        4 votes
    5. SantalBlush
      Link Parent
      This would make threads especially interesting to read through if they last a long time. One might witness perceptions slowly change, especially with respect to things like media, political...

      This would make threads especially interesting to read through if they last a long time. One might witness perceptions slowly change, especially with respect to things like media, political figures, etc.

      4 votes
  2. moocow1452
    Link
    Could we add a "tap out" or "resolved" label to comments? Doesn't have to affect the internal metrics, just have it throw up a confirmation that you wish to respond to a comment that you marked as...

    Could we add a "tap out" or "resolved" label to comments? Doesn't have to affect the internal metrics, just have it throw up a confirmation that you wish to respond to a comment that you marked as "resolved," and maybe not have comments under it show up as new.

    17 votes
  3. [6]
    Arshan
    Link
    Well it is mostly an experiment that I would like to try. Remove binary voting completely. I understand that it is the traditional method for link sharing sites like Tildes, but that doesn't make...

    Well it is mostly an experiment that I would like to try. Remove binary voting completely. I understand that it is the traditional method for link sharing sites like Tildes, but that doesn't make it necessary.

    I would like to replace it with a more explicit system of multiple binaries. For example, you could have a funny scale, an interesting scale and a provactive scale. This does function similarly to tags, but act as the central sorting method if the site. You could use a more complex formula to calculate or just use a hidden aggregate.

    I hope this would allow for two things in particular. First, a better understanding of why someone linked this. Second, it should also allow for multiple contexts of the site; if I only want funny and interesting, I could filter by just these metrics.

    Either way, I think that it would be interesting to see how this would change the site.

    15 votes
    1. JakeTheDog
      Link Parent
      I think this would also really help with organization for topics. It would be an orthogonal categorization. e.g. posts in politics and science can both also be either funny or serious, or maybe...

      I think this would also really help with organization for topics. It would be an orthogonal categorization. e.g. posts in politics and science can both also be either funny or serious, or maybe hard-facts vs editorial/analysis.

      3 votes
    2. Adys
      Link Parent
      The system you're describing existed on Slashdot back in the days. It was fairly successful there but I don't think anyone else really ever adopted it.

      The system you're describing existed on Slashdot back in the days. It was fairly successful there but I don't think anyone else really ever adopted it.

      3 votes
    3. [2]
      WendigoTulpa
      Link Parent
      I also agree that voting should be redone, but in a way that still requires as little thought as upvoting/downvoting. My idea was having 4 buttons at the bottom of a post: Relevant, Like, Dislike,...

      I also agree that voting should be redone, but in a way that still requires as little thought as upvoting/downvoting.

      My idea was having 4 buttons at the bottom of a post:
      Relevant, Like, Dislike, Irrelevant
      You can select multiple, but once you select one, all buttons to the left of it become unavailable, along with the opposite of the button you clicked.

      People could still abuse it by saying something they dislike is also irrelevant, even if it is in fact relevant, but I'd hope that a few bad actors might be averaged out if most people use it correctly.

      This is just my largely uneducated idea, might not be workable at all.

      2 votes
      1. Keegan
        Link Parent
        I don't like (oh the irony) using like and dislike for voting. It encourages people to just vote for things they agree with, instead of comments that have good substance and are respectful. The...

        I don't like (oh the irony) using like and dislike for voting. It encourages people to just vote for things they agree with, instead of comments that have good substance and are respectful.

        The idea of relevant and irrelevant is interesting, but I think it would be tedious to go through all comments you see and add relevant if it is on-topic.

        2 votes
    4. Amarok
      Link Parent
      I like this too, mentioned a similar idea a while back. Let the 'score' be more than just a rote upvote count. Instead, let the labels do the voting. It'll get more people using labels and...

      I like this too, mentioned a similar idea a while back. Let the 'score' be more than just a rote upvote count. Instead, let the labels do the voting. It'll get more people using labels and thinking harder about why they are voting. Then all we need is a solid range of labels that accurately represent how someone feels about the content so they pick whatever fits in the moment.

      Probably going to be a bit different for comments vs submissions, though.

      2 votes
  4. [7]
    Amarok
    Link
    Hats and coats. When we talked about being able to tag users, it became clear that there were a lot of people using tags for very different things. It's kinda amazing what you can do with a simple...

    Hats and coats.

    When we talked about being able to tag users, it became clear that there were a lot of people using tags for very different things. It's kinda amazing what you can do with a simple text box. A lot of those uses were based on tracking user reputation - if you have a good or bad interaction you may want to tag that user with something to remind you in the future when you come across them again. We've all seen people doing this on reddit with RES. It's not something a lot of users do, but I expect that's more because you have to load RES to use it and most people don't even know RES exists.

    So if user tags ever come to Tildes, what form do they take? Can we make them more fun, engaging, and productive? How do we stop people from abusing them? That's where the idea of hats and coats came from. It might make for a useful form of user reputation tracking. The idea still needs work, it's just a germ here.

    12 votes
    1. [2]
      Gaywallet
      Link Parent
      I like this idea but I disagree with the need for an icon. A second line with small text or text right justified with information on the hat/coats a person is wearing would work well. The one...

      I like this idea but I disagree with the need for an icon. A second line with small text or text right justified with information on the hat/coats a person is wearing would work well.

      The one major issue I see with this, is that when you give someone a negative hat, you're more likely to interpret what they post as negative or to simply skip/ignore. It's very easy to fall into the trap of categorizing rather than reading and potentially forgiving.

      8 votes
      1. JakeTheDog
        Link Parent
        Yea I specifically avoid tagging for exactly this reason. I would like to give everyone the benefit of the doubt with respect to any prior conflicts (but also one-off brilliant comments). I think...

        The one major issue I see with this, is that when you give someone a negative hat, you're more likely to interpret what they post as negative or to simply skip/ignore.

        Yea I specifically avoid tagging for exactly this reason. I would like to give everyone the benefit of the doubt with respect to any prior conflicts (but also one-off brilliant comments).

        I think the more neutrality we have in our discussions the better it will be for discourse.

        6 votes
    2. elcuello
      Link Parent
      Just a counter argument to the hats and coats which as a concept I'm not against. I personally don't like tagging people and almost never go to their post history. Why? Because I like the...

      Just a counter argument to the hats and coats which as a concept I'm not against. I personally don't like tagging people and almost never go to their post history. Why? Because I like the anonymity and feeling of floating somewhere on the internet between strangers and I don't want to judge people out of context. Of course you inevitable get to know usernames over time but I actually kind of strive not to. I want to cherish that feeling of togetherness and equality among strangers. I try to have en open mind every time I talk to someone and a tag could contaminate that and give me preemptive thoughts and feelings towards that user. It can also help prevent the hive mind becoming to strong to fast. Of course there's an argument to be made that assholes would be spotted a mile away and it could save you trolling time but I don't fell that it's that big of an issue here for the time being.

      3 votes
    3. [3]
      suspended
      Link Parent
      Right now I'm using Tildes Extended which supports tagging. And I agree that tagging should be a baked-in feature of Tildes.

      Right now I'm using Tildes Extended which supports tagging. And I agree that tagging should be a baked-in feature of Tildes.

      1 vote
      1. [2]
        balooga
        Link Parent
        Since this is the pie-in-the-sky topic, I've wondered for years how a publicly viewable/editable tagging system could work for a site like Reddit or Tildes. It would need to be moderated and...

        Since this is the pie-in-the-sky topic, I've wondered for years how a publicly viewable/editable tagging system could work for a site like Reddit or Tildes. It would need to be moderated and probably have other anti-abuse functionality baked into it.

        What I'm imagining is a way to link facts about a user to comments they've made about themselves. So if at some point I mention "I am a chef in a Persian restaurant," another user could tag me as "chef in a Persian restaurant" and reference my comment as proof. If I later contradict my self-claim, for example, saying "I don't know anything about cooking, I'm a mechanical engineer" then the tags would make it obvious that I've misrepresented myself at some point. If I say "I'm a retired chef, now dabbling in auto repair" someone could amend the previous tag (change it to say "retired chef in Persian restaurant") and also add an "auto repair hobbyist" tag. Users would not be able to modify their own tags, but could collaborate with others to edit those of other people in a Wikipedia-esque fashion. There would be a public ledger of tag history for each user and every edit would indicate who made it. Maybe a discussion page as well, for debating particular tags.

        I'm not saying this is a good idea or requesting it. Just speculating about how a public user-tagging system might function and how the resulting decrease in (perceived) anonymity would change the way we converse.

        In one sense, this would enable "doxxing" of every user of the site, and all that implies. On the other hand, tags would be limited to details the user voluntarily provided about themselves. On the site today, if I mention that I live in Baltimore, already anyone can tag me with Tildes Extended, or write down that fact in a creepy notebook or whatever. I shouldn't expect that my location disclosure will be restricted to the context of that one comment. But, if the information I share were codified as a persistent, public identity record on the site, I'd probably be more cognizant of what I'm revealing before I hit the submit button. I think that would be a net win. It would provide valuable transparency for users about their personal identifiability and trackability online, which exist currently but aren't readily apparent.

        More in the "pros" column, it would enable clearer differentiation between users. It could be helpful to know when someone commenting is an expert on the subject, or a layperson.

        This is probably a dangerous idea... but it would make for an interesting experiment.

        5 votes
        1. Amarok
          Link Parent
          I favor the idea of developing a tagging system just based on the simple fact that the users will create one for themselves at some point. Tildes Extended supports a basic version already, it's...

          I favor the idea of developing a tagging system just based on the simple fact that the users will create one for themselves at some point. Tildes Extended supports a basic version already, it's not hard. Once that's done, that bell can't be unrung, and it'll be outside of developer control.

          Granted, if it requires an extension, most users won't use it, but some will, especially those who need it for harassing and brigading as we've seen on reddit. There are entire lists of users being traded around for those purposes right now. That's what users do, and they will do it here just like they do on reddit. It's a problem we can't avoid.

          Seems like the best way to beat that is to have a baked in feature before someone creates an external mechanism that becomes widely popular. At least that way it's up to the Tildes team what features it supports, and they have the opportunity to set the system up in such a way that it can minimize bad behaviors and incentivize good behaviors. That's assuming we can dream up a system that does the job.

          I also wonder about the large scale effects if every user has it at their fingertips, instead of just those who seek it out for whatever reasons. It's the difference between almost no users having it and all users having it and using it collectively. It seems to me that most people won't use it for nefarious purposes, and that may help wash the bad behaviors out of the system, just like the proposals for having Tildes run by tens of thousands of moderators unique to each group. In both cases, the troublemakers should remain a tiny fraction of the users.

          It's not something we need now, but if Tildes gets big, it may be an effective way to solve certain problems related to reputation. Also, remember that Tildes users in good standing will be able to leave anonymized comments instead of using their handle every time, so users will have the ability to sidestep whatever tag/reputation follows them around in the public eye. Only the admins will know who it is, and only for a small window in time, and they'll only look if there's a reason to suspect some kind of bad faith abuse.

          There are so many questions nobody has asked about how this can play out. Do you set the tags on whoever you like, however you like, with them remaining private to you? What if that info is shared just with admin-level users for abuse mitigation and detection? What if users can all collectively tag each other, so that the community decides how someone is viewed once the tags hit some display threshold? What of using specific tags for users only in specific groups, so that the tags themselves are sensitive to the context of where the thread is? What about authoritative tags, working much like twitter/youtube verified accounts?

          There are so many potential dials and fiddles on this concept I can barely get my head around it. I have no idea what the right answers to these questions are, or even if these are the right questions to be asking. It seems like a large, unexplored space where Tildes might be able to make unique advances in the concept of community trust well beyond what any other website has ever done - mainly because their motives aren't in the right place (money) and Tildes' motives are (users and community).

          It's definitely going to be a tricky/dangerous feature to play with. That's what makes it fun! It can't end any worse than our first stab at comment labels did. :P

          5 votes
  5. [13]
    cfabbro
    Link
    And just to give you an idea of the sorts of ideas I am talking about, here's mine: What if editing a comment reset the vote count on it? This could potentially have a bunch of both positive and...

    And just to give you an idea of the sorts of ideas I am talking about, here's mine:


    What if editing a comment reset the vote count on it?

    This could potentially have a bunch of both positive and negative effects; It would force people to take a bit more time writing their comments, proof-reading them and making sure it's "good" before submitting them (positive). However it would likely also discourage people from updating information contained within comments as well (big negative).

    11 votes
    1. [8]
      JakeTheDog
      Link Parent
      Yes! God yes. I am unsettled by the lack of transparency in the editing mechanic. Luckily we seem to have a pretty honest community that, as far as I can tell, doesn't abuse this feature. At least...

      Yes! God yes. I am unsettled by the lack of transparency in the editing mechanic. Luckily we seem to have a pretty honest community that, as far as I can tell, doesn't abuse this feature. At least for now...

      Though I'm not sure I agree about the typos etc. Coming from someone who writes a lot, it's easy to miss errors when rereading your own material because of the familiarity i.e. being blind to the details. Plus it's generally harmless...

      5 votes
      1. [3]
        Weldawadyathink
        Link Parent
        What about having other users be able to suggest edits specifically for typos. Then the poster could accept the edit wholesale. Edits made by the poster would reset votes, but edits suggested by...

        What about having other users be able to suggest edits specifically for typos. Then the poster could accept the edit wholesale. Edits made by the poster would reset votes, but edits suggested by someone else and accepted by the poster would leave votes intact.

        5 votes
        1. Amarok
          Link Parent
          Comment authored by jeff with edits from bob, joe, and mary. I think there's something to the idea of a more community-centered authorship. It'd certainly kick ass in situations where a lot of...

          Comment authored by jeff with edits from bob, joe, and mary. I think there's something to the idea of a more community-centered authorship. It'd certainly kick ass in situations where a lot of people are collaborating on list-type content or real-time events, and that happens a lot (and is usually some of the best content) on other sites. As long as it's up to the OP to accept the edits (or grant other users permission to join in the group-editing) it should be pretty resistant to abuse, too.

          5 votes
        2. Elronnd
          Link Parent
          I think the original poster would get flooded with typo edits. They would also get multiple contradictory proposals of ways to fix a single typo. Not something fun to sift through.

          I think the original poster would get flooded with typo edits.

          They would also get multiple contradictory proposals of ways to fix a single typo.

          Not something fun to sift through.

          3 votes
      2. [2]
        cfabbro
        (edited )
        Link Parent
        Where is this really a problem though? In +/- 12 years of actively using reddit and moderating there I have only seen people abuse editing a handful of times and they were almost always called out...

        I am unsettled by the lack of transparency in the editing mechanic. Luckily we seem to have a pretty honest community that, as far as I can tell, doesn't abuse this feature. At least for now...

        Where is this really a problem though? In +/- 12 years of actively using reddit and moderating there I have only seen people abuse editing a handful of times and they were almost always called out for having done so. Even here on Tildes we have had only one incident with a user editing maliciously that I know of, and they were banned for it (amongst other things).

        p.s. Don't get me wrong, I think some level of editing transparency would be nice (I even recommended a comment edit heatmap-like system at one point), but it's also rife with problems, both privacy and technical related ones.

        5 votes
        1. JakeTheDog
          Link Parent
          Not saying it's a frequent occurrence. You just gave two examples. I've also seen it on e.g. FB as well (by those unaware of the history when it was first enabled). Though it's obviously...

          Not saying it's a frequent occurrence. You just gave two examples. I've also seen it on e.g. FB as well (by those unaware of the history when it was first enabled). Though it's obviously disincentivized when there is transparency (i.e. history) so you don't see it too often. But I'm in the camp of planning ahead instead of waiting to deal with it when it happens.

          1 vote
      3. [2]
        Keegan
        Link Parent
        I think that editing could be made more transparent if there was a "typo" tag. A user selects it, then they are given a way to select where the typo is, and what they think the fix should be. This...

        I think that editing could be made more transparent if there was a "typo" tag. A user selects it, then they are given a way to select where the typo is, and what they think the fix should be. This notifies the poster, and they can accept or reject the edit. If accepted, the post will be edited, but next to the time it was edited will be the word "typo" in some way. They won't see who suggested the typo, but the username is stored in case of abuse.

        I don't know how reasonable this is in the way I suggested, but it has some merit I think. This idea goes along a lot with what @Weldawadyathink said.

        Also, in regards to edits that aren't for typos, I think if a comment has a reply and is then edited, the reply should get some sort of indication that is was made before the edit that is more prominent than it is now. This could send a notification to the person who replied, and if they think it didn't impact their comment's point, then they can dismiss the indication and it isn't seen anymore. Editing the reply would remove the indication as well.

        4 votes
        1. JakeTheDog
          Link Parent
          This is a great idea! Because this is really the only (or main) scenario where edits make a difference.

          Also, in regards to edits that aren't for typos, I think if a comment has a reply and is then edited, the reply should get some sort of indication that is was made before the edit that is more prominent than it is now. This could send a notification to the person who replied, and if they think it didn't impact their comment's point, then they can dismiss the indication and it isn't seen anymore. Editing the reply would remove the indication as well

          This is a great idea! Because this is really the only (or main) scenario where edits make a difference.

          2 votes
    2. [4]
      balooga
      Link Parent
      That's an interesting idea, but I think the effect should be weighted to mitigate the drawbacks you mentioned. Instead of just resetting all the votes, just decrease them by n percent. Calculate n...

      That's an interesting idea, but I think the effect should be weighted to mitigate the drawbacks you mentioned.

      Instead of just resetting all the votes, just decrease them by n percent. Calculate n by determining how much of the content was edited. If I do a quick edit of a comment that only changes a couple letters (say, fixing typos) the votes on that should be left alone. If I edit more than (maybe) 5%-10% of my comment, decrease the vote count by that same percent. If the edited version is more than 65% different from the original, reset all of the votes. I picked those numbers out of thin air, but you get the idea.

      It might also be worth factoring in how much time elapsed before the edit, but I'm not sure how that should be weighted exactly.

      2 votes
      1. [3]
        cfabbro
        Link Parent
        Yeah, a full vote reset might be a bit too harsh and discourage even beneficial edits, but some sort of variable or scaling vote reduction might counteract that. And doing that, it would...

        Yeah, a full vote reset might be a bit too harsh and discourage even beneficial edits, but some sort of variable or scaling vote reduction might counteract that. And doing that, it would essentially become a judgement call on the users part, e.g. "is my edit worth the minor vote reduction or not", which I think could be an interesting dynamic. I have no clue how it all could be implemented or how it would work in practice either, but I do like your idea!

        1. [2]
          Keegan
          Link Parent
          Off-topic, but does Reddit scale their upvotes to inflate the numbers? I've seen people claim it but I've never seen any reasoning for how it works.

          Off-topic, but does Reddit scale their upvotes to inflate the numbers? I've seen people claim it but I've never seen any reasoning for how it works.

          1. cfabbro
            (edited )
            Link Parent
            Reddit uses vote fuzzing (for anti-spam reasons, though the effectiveness of that is debatable) and vote normalization (I assume for UI/UX reasons?), however AFAIK those generally don't result in...

            Reddit uses vote fuzzing (for anti-spam reasons, though the effectiveness of that is debatable) and vote normalization (I assume for UI/UX reasons?), however AFAIK those generally don't result in intentionally inflated numbers but often the exact opposite. E.g. IIRC spez once mentioned the Barack Obama AMA was shown as having significantly less votes than it really should have due to the normalization.

            And the reason you have never seen a definitive explanation for how all that works is because (again, AFAIK) it's never been fully explained by anyone in authority at reddit HQ, the code behind those functions was never included in the open source code even back when reddit still had some open source code, and ex-admins are not allowed to discuss "proprietary internal mechanisms" at reddit even after they leave the company.

            So anything you read on the subject, my own comments included, will essentially just be guesses and speculation... made even less accurate because the systems likely have changed significantly over the years and hints about their workings are few and far between.

            4 votes
  6. [3]
    Staross
    Link
    Use sortition for moderation: https://tildes.net/~tildes/2tk/suggestion_use_sortition_for_moderation
    10 votes
    1. [2]
      kfwyre
      (edited )
      Link Parent
      Thank you for this term! I've thought a lot about the same concept (and think it could work wonderfully on Tildes). I've been using "juries" and "distributed moderation" as my own mental...

      Thank you for this term! I've thought a lot about the same concept (and think it could work wonderfully on Tildes). I've been using "juries" and "distributed moderation" as my own mental identifiers, but "sortition" is better and more accurate.

      I think it could go a long way if we baked custodial and moderation duties into the user experience here. Instead of Tildes just being a place we come to comment, part of our time here is also handling other issues as one of the many users of the site. Not only are there lots of practical benefits from doing so (many of which you laid out in the other thread), but I also agree there are some psychological ones as well (giving users here a sense of responsibility, duty, and ownership).

      I've also thought a lot about how this could go wrong, and I think layers of sortition might be a viable way to go. Decisions could be farmed out to a random set of users, and then contentious, divisive, or difficult ones could then be evaluated by a secondary set of random users, for example, to establish whether or not the decision itself is in line. Heck, we could even have decisions vetted by several different sets of random users, so that redundancy can guard against "rogue" decisions.

      3 votes
      1. Staross
        Link Parent
        Exactly, the success of such a system would probably depend on getting all the small details right. Like people said in the thread you would maybe need to be a "trusted user" to be in the pool of...

        Exactly, the success of such a system would probably depend on getting all the small details right. Like people said in the thread you would maybe need to be a "trusted user" to be in the pool of juries. You could also have an ostracism procedure to ban people.

        2 votes
  7. [3]
    gpl
    Link
    Radically devolved moderation power, a la Stack Exchange. This might not be that radical actually depending on how the trust system ends up being implemented, but: A community consensus should be...

    Radically devolved moderation power, a la Stack Exchange. This might not be that radical actually depending on how the trust system ends up being implemented, but: A community consensus should be enough to tag things as misleading (or otherwise tag them), remove posts, and possibly even remove comments. A small subset of users would have the ability to override these decisions. The people with those powers would be selected by the community and ideally change frequently. In other words - an overly democratic system of community moderation.

    8 votes
    1. Deimos
      Link Parent
      Have you read this page in the Docs? https://docs.tildes.net/future-plans It's very vague and not much of it's been implemented at this point (and really isn't needed yet), but that's the general...

      Have you read this page in the Docs? https://docs.tildes.net/future-plans

      It's very vague and not much of it's been implemented at this point (and really isn't needed yet), but that's the general concept of having users "evolve" into having some moderation-like abilities through showing that they're trustworthy.

      9 votes
    2. JakeTheDog
      Link Parent
      How would you control for echo-chamber effects? On Reddit, downvoting is too often used as signal for disagreement rather than poor quality.

      How would you control for echo-chamber effects? On Reddit, downvoting is too often used as signal for disagreement rather than poor quality.

      8 votes
  8. [2]
    skybrian
    Link
    I don't have any radical ideas because I'm pretty happy with what we have. But one thing I'd like is a way to upvote a comment so that the author sees it. I use this on Mastodon when I've been...

    I don't have any radical ideas because I'm pretty happy with what we have. But one thing I'd like is a way to upvote a comment so that the author sees it. I use this on Mastodon when I've been discussing something with someone, I'm happy with their most recent reply, and I'm not going to reply again. It seems like a nice way to end a conversation. (Voting is not the same because it's anonymous.)

    7 votes
    1. JakeTheDog
      Link Parent
      I second this. While I feel like this could be accomplished with a simple "I agree/concede" reply comment, I fear that may be considered "noise" according to the standards of what a comment ought...

      I second this. While I feel like this could be accomplished with a simple "I agree/concede" reply comment, I fear that may be considered "noise" according to the standards of what a comment ought to be here.

      3 votes
  9. [9]
    suspended
    Link
    Reddit has some very useful bots such as AutoModerator and RemindMe!. I'd like to see this implemented and developed here at some point.

    Reddit has some very useful bots such as AutoModerator and RemindMe!. I'd like to see this implemented and developed here at some point.

    6 votes
    1. [3]
      moocow1452
      (edited )
      Link Parent
      There was a suggestion for terminal commands in comments that would access an API similar to the robot accounts on Reddit. I can't find the original, but it was proposed as "/remindme 7" or...

      There was a suggestion for terminal commands in comments that would access an API similar to the robot accounts on Reddit. I can't find the original, but it was proposed as "/remindme 7" or something and it wouldn't leave a visible comment, but Tildes will still send you a reminder in a week.

      8 votes
      1. [2]
        jtvjan
        Link Parent
        Maybe that could be implemented using PMs? If the user starts their comment with a slash, and then a bot's username, the comment is instead sent to the bot as a PM with a link to the comment or...

        Maybe that could be implemented using PMs? If the user starts their comment with a slash, and then a bot's username, the comment is instead sent to the bot as a PM with a link to the comment or submission it is in reply to. But there would probably have to be something in the UI indicating that it's going to do this, and a way to escape it.

        3 votes
        1. Algernon_Asimov
          Link Parent
          Maybe all bot activity could be implemented using PMs. Maybe none of this has to be done via comments. Maybe if someone wants a bot to do something, they message that bot directly with their...

          Maybe that could be implemented using PMs?

          Maybe all bot activity could be implemented using PMs. Maybe none of this has to be done via comments. Maybe if someone wants a bot to do something, they message that bot directly with their instructions, rather than cluttering up public threads with irrelevant noise.

          1 vote
    2. [3]
      Bauke
      Link Parent
      I think that a lot of what AutoMod provides is probably going to be built into the site rather than be a bot, as well as reminders (which you can kind of already do with bookmarks). And given that...

      I think that a lot of what AutoMod provides is probably going to be built into the site rather than be a bot, as well as reminders (which you can kind of already do with bookmarks). And given that Deimos is the original creator of AutoMod, having similar utilities here would be no surprise to me.

      6 votes
      1. [2]
        mftrhu
        Link Parent
        Eeh, not really. Unless something changed recently, bookmarks on here are the equivalent of saved posts on reddit: that is, you need to remember to check on them, instead of having a bot painting...

        as well as reminders (which you can kind of already do with bookmarks)

        Eeh, not really. Unless something changed recently, bookmarks on here are the equivalent of saved posts on reddit: that is, you need to remember to check on them, instead of having a bot painting your mailbox red and, if you are active, they pile up pretty quickly.

        I ended up writing both my own "scraper" and viewer to handle the content I save on reddit, as I broke the 1k items threshold months ago, and there's no search function for them. They just don't fill the same niche as !remindme.

        4 votes
        1. Bauke
          Link Parent
          I realize bookmarks aren't ideal for it, that's what the "kind of" was for, but you can use them that way (I know I have been). Ideally though it would be baked into the site rather than be a bot,...

          I realize bookmarks aren't ideal for it, that's what the "kind of" was for, but you can use them that way (I know I have been). Ideally though it would be baked into the site rather than be a bot, that's just what I meant.

          5 votes
    3. [2]
      Wes
      Link Parent
      "RemindMe" is one of my least favorite aspects about reddit. It seems very spammy to post a comment (and generate a new comment) rather than just clicking the "save" button under any post....

      "RemindMe" is one of my least favorite aspects about reddit. It seems very spammy to post a comment (and generate a new comment) rather than just clicking the "save" button under any post.

      AutoModerator, of course, provides much more utility.

      3 votes
      1. emdash
        Link Parent
        Most bots—AutoModerator included—are patches over functionality that should otherwise have been included in the Reddit codebase. Enriching Tildes with some kind of native remind me functionality...

        Most bots—AutoModerator included—are patches over functionality that should otherwise have been included in the Reddit codebase. Enriching Tildes with some kind of native remind me functionality seems like a great idea to provide user-friendly extensions that people (clearly) want.

        3 votes
  10. [2]
    hungariantoast
    Link
    Could Tildes somehow provide a way for users to host their blogs on and integrate them with the website? So like, despite my propensity to be "forever late" on delivering blog posts, I would like...

    Could Tildes somehow provide a way for users to host their blogs on and integrate them with the website?

    So like, despite my propensity to be "forever late" on delivering blog posts, I would like to regularly write and post posts to a blog that I operate.

    How could I integrate this blog with Tildes?

    The actual Tildes Blog just uses the Pelican Static Site Generator with a custom theme. Would it be possible to create a service for users to use the same site generator with their own custom styles to host their own blogs on Tildes? How could we integrate those blogs with Tildes in a meaningful way?

    I don't know, for a site that "prioritizes high-quality content and discussions" I haven't seen a lot of ideas thrown around to facilitate the creation of that type of content.

    I mean, sure, we can comment on links all day long, but I really feel like tapping into the community and giving people ways to create, through methods tied deeply with the website's structure, would be interesting.

    Just something to think about.

    6 votes
    1. Bauke
      (edited )
      Link Parent
      If it would be possible to create wiki pages that only the creator could edit (and maybe let them grant other people edit permission) then this could basically be done through the wiki. Not to...

      If it would be possible to create wiki pages that only the creator could edit (and maybe let them grant other people edit permission) then this could basically be done through the wiki.

      Not to mention you could basically already make a blog of sorts through regular topics and having a list of them as a wiki page (this would also get you a comments section), similar to what many recurring topics do. If the idea is solely to have Tildes' style and markdown available, for any extra customization like embedded media and stuff it would probably need to be its own thing.

      3 votes
  11. Wes
    Link
    My answer would have been to remove all visible scoring. This is how I use reddit and I much prefer the experience. We did actually run that experiment for a week here, but there's been no more on...

    My answer would have been to remove all visible scoring. This is how I use reddit and I much prefer the experience.

    We did actually run that experiment for a week here, but there's been no more on it so I'm guessing it was a once-off thing.

    Failing turning off votes for everybody, I'd like to see an option to disable it in user preferences. Or perhaps more granularly: show votes on your comments, show votes on other's comments, show votes on threads.

    5 votes
  12. vili
    Link
    How about not relying solely on link submissions from users, but creating a system that suggests potentially interesting articles and asks users to be the gatekeepers for them? The aim would not...

    How about not relying solely on link submissions from users, but creating a system that suggests potentially interesting articles and asks users to be the gatekeepers for them? The aim would not be to replace regular link submissions, but to help users to discover interesting articles to post.

    This could work based on a curated list of sources for each group. For ~science, the system could follow the RSS feeds of publications like Nature, Science Magazine, Scientific American and others, while ~news (or ~news.analysis?) could pull articles from leading geopolitical sources.

    These articles would not be posted automatically as we don't want to create an RSS reader. Instead, one or two article suggestions would be included in a user's feed, naturally in a way that if I'm not subscribed to ~science, I wouldn't be shown suggestions for that group. The system could also take into account how much existing content I have "unread" on Tildes: if there's a lot there already, don't show curated suggestions, but if I've already gone through everything or it's a particularly slow day at Tildes, it could show more.

    Suggested articles would be visually identified as such and a user would have the option to either "bury" or "post" one. Different users would see largely different articles, and if for instance two different users would bury the same article, it would no longer be shown to anyone.

    Once an article would get posted, it would become a regular post on Tildes and the article would no longer be included in the suggested articles feature.

    The list of curated sources should of course be large enough so as not to make Tildes a bubble for just a handful of sources. The system would likely also have to be more advanced than just directly offering everything that comes through from its sources, for instance to prevent situations where X has happened and both sources A and B write about it -- we would really only want one link submission and discussion about it.

    If more advanced, the system could perhaps also do some background checks on how popular each article seems to be online and prefer ones that already have social proof elsewhere. Would it even be able to find curated content based on what's trending online? And then there is of course algorithmic or AI based content analysis where the system actually analyses the article itself. If we want to talk about pie in the sky ideas, that is.

    5 votes
  13. [2]
    Pontifier
    Link
    I was just on another website posting, and kind of wished I could endcap the multiple replies to my statement. I wanted to thank them all, and explain to them collectively how they had helped me...

    I was just on another website posting, and kind of wished I could endcap the multiple replies to my statement. I wanted to thank them all, and explain to them collectively how they had helped me understand what I was mistaken about.

    Multiple people were helpful, and I wanted to express my new understanding based on this multiple feedback, but there was no easy way to reply in line without picking one of the comments and nesting things deeper... It seems a natural sort of conversation style. One person speaks, and then listens as multiple people give feedback, then has a chance to respond to all of the feedback collectively.

    The thread can still nest deeper the standard way, but it would be nice to be able to bring the discussion back up to the original level to show new understanding based on multiple threads of nested comment...

    This gets around having to edit a post to add information by sort of allowing append only. You write something, multiple people respond, you append - endcapping the current discussion, multiple people can respond again, etc.

    5 votes
    1. Amarok
      Link Parent
      That's an interesting idea - inventing mechanisms that allow for a different kind of conversation flow. Right now, editing your original comment is the only way to do this, but it doesn't ping all...

      That's an interesting idea - inventing mechanisms that allow for a different kind of conversation flow. Right now, editing your original comment is the only way to do this, but it doesn't ping all the folks that replied to it. The original comment is a one-to-many broadcast, but the replies can only be dealt with on a one-to-one basis afterwards.

      I think this would go well with more editing nuance, too. Right now all we know is that someone edited their post, but not what unless they spell it out with an edit: blurb, and even then we're relying on them to be honest about what they edited, there's no way to check. Perhaps there could be some kind of 'append' option that doesn't edit the existing post. Instead it just tosses a new comment at the end of the existing comment with a timestamp, probably after a line break like this one.


      Then we could have more of a continuing conversation, if that append option had some way to notify the people who replied to it. This still seems a bit messy, though. I can imagine it making the conversation a bit hard to follow if the thread is old/large/busy. Seems like we'd need to improve the presentation layer to match the changes to the conversation flow somehow.

      2 votes
  14. [12]
    ainar-g
    Link
    Partially stolen from Bugzilla. Limited number of votes. That is, users start with a number of initial votes, say 10,000, that they can use the same way tilderinoes use them right now. When...

    Partially stolen from Bugzilla. Limited number of votes. That is, users start with a number of initial votes, say 10,000, that they can use the same way tilderinoes use them right now. When they're out of votes they have to unvote some of the topics and comments that they didn't really like that much in the first place.

    The community or the moderators have some way of rewarding or punishing a user by increasing or reducing the user's vote number. I think it should also be possible to vote for a submission several times. Probably within a limit.

    Note that the votes aren't transferred. This is not a “vote economy”. If a user with 100 votes creates a submission which receives 1,000 votes then the user still has the same 100 votes. Maybe with some bonus from the community or moderators, but the bonus is not equal to 1,000 votes.

    4 votes
    1. [3]
      JakeTheDog
      Link Parent
      Oh god, can you imagine going through your 10k vote history and judging what to unvote? I would just stop voting at that point (or make a new account).

      When they're out of votes they have to unvote some of the topics and comments that they didn't really like that much in the first place.

      Oh god, can you imagine going through your 10k vote history and judging what to unvote? I would just stop voting at that point (or make a new account).

      8 votes
      1. [2]
        ainar-g
        Link Parent
        I actually can imagine that. Could even be fun: you get to re-experience all the good stuff that you liked as well. Then again, I am a programmer who enjoys writing documentation and tests so I...

        I actually can imagine that. Could even be fun: you get to re-experience all the good stuff that you liked as well. Then again, I am a programmer who enjoys writing documentation and tests so I won't be surprised if I am a minority here :-)

        1 vote
        1. JakeTheDog
          Link Parent
          Well, to each their own. It just seems like a massive time- and mental energy-sink (not that revisiting topics itself is bad).

          Well, to each their own. It just seems like a massive time- and mental energy-sink (not that revisiting topics itself is bad).

          5 votes
    2. Deimos
      Link Parent
      Limited votes is a really interesting idea, but it's really only useful for cases where you're trying to rank or prioritize things based on the number of votes. I've never used Bugzilla much, but...

      Limited votes is a really interesting idea, but it's really only useful for cases where you're trying to rank or prioritize things based on the number of votes.

      I've never used Bugzilla much, but there's a platform called UserVoice that I used to like for managing suggestions and feature requests, and I think it did it really well. You had a limited number of votes, and you could also choose to vote multiple times on particular suggestions. If I remember right, by default you had 10 votes total, and could use up to 3 votes on the same item. That meant that if a particular user cared a lot about a particular suggestion, they could use 2 or 3 votes on it, but doing that would mean that they could support fewer suggestions overall. When a suggestion was "closed" (either because it was being denied or had been implemented), all the people that had used votes on it would have those votes refunded to be able to re-allocate to different ones.

      The point of limited votes is that it forces users to make choices, which is useful when you're trying to figure out things like "which suggestions do the users want most?". That's not really the goal of voting on sites like Tildes though, we're not trying to come up with a global ranking for the posts. There is a little bit of similarity in how the Exemplary labels work though, since you can only use those relatively infrequently.

      7 votes
    3. Elronnd
      Link Parent
      How about limited number of votes per unit time? That is, I get only 10 votes per day (or something like that). And they don't accumulate.

      How about limited number of votes per unit time? That is, I get only 10 votes per day (or something like that). And they don't accumulate.

      6 votes
    4. [5]
      Algernon_Asimov
      Link Parent
      What happens to your accrued "trust" score when I remove my vote from one of your old posts so I can vote on someone else's new post?

      What happens to your accrued "trust" score when I remove my vote from one of your old posts so I can vote on someone else's new post?

      5 votes
      1. [4]
        ainar-g
        (edited )
        Link Parent
        If the StackOverflow rules apply, the trust score is removed. Imagine that someone posts something as original content and receives a lot of votes. Later it is discovered that the content wasn't...

        If the StackOverflow rules apply, the trust score is removed. Imagine that someone posts something as original content and receives a lot of votes. Later it is discovered that the content wasn't original and that the poster basically stole it. It is therefore logical to remove the award from the user since the score wasn't really deserved.

        1 vote
        1. [3]
          Algernon_Asimov
          Link Parent
          I'm not removing my vote from your post as a punishment for something you did wrong. I've simply run out of votes, and I need to remove my vote from your post so I can vote on a new post I like....

          I'm not removing my vote from your post as a punishment for something you did wrong. I've simply run out of votes, and I need to remove my vote from your post so I can vote on a new post I like. Your post is fine. I liked your (hypothetical) post. I still like it! It's just collateral damage in my quest to find a spare vote to bestow on someone else's new post.

          This scenario is implied by your suggestion: I have a limited number of votes, so to vote on a new post I need to remove a vote from an old post.

          2 votes
          1. [2]
            ainar-g
            Link Parent
            I think that the same rule still applies. If you decided to remove your vote from this post as opposed to ten thousand other posts in your voting history then it was probably not that good in the...

            I think that the same rule still applies. If you decided to remove your vote from this post as opposed to ten thousand other posts in your voting history then it was probably not that good in the first place.

            The assumption here is that people won't just randomly remove votes from old posts but will remove votes from posts they don't like any more. Which is not a safe assumption, obviously, but it's the one I've made.

            1. Algernon_Asimov
              Link Parent
              Or it was just the first one I found? Or just one I picked randomly from my list? Or... if you're content to lose "trust" whenever I want to vote for a new post, I could just target your old posts...

              I think that the same rule still applies. If you decided to remove your vote from this post as opposed to ten thousand other posts in your voting history then it was probably not that good in the first place.

              Or it was just the first one I found? Or just one I picked randomly from my list?

              Or... if you're content to lose "trust" whenever I want to vote for a new post, I could just target your old posts to remove my votes from - because I know it won't upset you as much as it might upset other people.

              I'm not going to individually review 10,000 previous posts to figure out which one was least deserving of my vote.


              The easy answer to my original question (and the one I expected you to give) is that nothing happens to your accrued "trust" score when I remove my vote from one of your old posts. You earned that vote. The only reason I'm removing it is because I want to give it to another post. You did nothing wrong, so you shouldn't be penalised.

              3 votes
    5. Amarok
      Link Parent
      Voat fiddled a bit with this stuff. You couldn't downvote anything until your account had given out at least 100 upvotes, and even then, you had a hard limit of not being able to downvote more...

      Voat fiddled a bit with this stuff. You couldn't downvote anything until your account had given out at least 100 upvotes, and even then, you had a hard limit of not being able to downvote more times than you upvoted. It was a global accounting balance. Naturally the downvote still killed the place, but those first couple weeks where no one could downvote because everyone was new were pretty nice.

      It might be wise to think about some kind of rate limiting or power limiting for Tildes votes.

      What if the votes were diluted? In any given day, you have a voting power of some arbitrary number, call it a hundred. During that day, if you upvote one post, it counts as the full hundred. Upvote ten posts and each counts as ten. Upvote a hundred and they each count as one. Doesn't that seem like it might help balance out the people who vote sparingly with the ones who vote generously?

      5 votes
  15. balooga
    Link
    New idea I just thought of... I really like the red "(7 new)" unread comment indicator that appears on the front/group pages for topics I've been following. However, there are some topics I don't...

    New idea I just thought of...

    I really like the red "(7 new)" unread comment indicator that appears on the front/group pages for topics I've been following. However, there are some topics I don't really want to see that for anymore. Case in point, I clicked into the Steam giveaway topic once and decided it wasn't for me. Didn't comment, moved on. It's almost two weeks later now, and because of the nature of that sort of discussion, my unread indicator keeps incrementing.

    I don't particularly want to remove the topic from my front page, I just want the red badge to go away. I feel like there should be a way to reset the state of a topic back to the way it was before you first viewed it. A little "x" that appears when you mouse over the indicator text might be sufficient UI; if you click that the indicator disappears until the next time you open the topic.

    4 votes
  16. hungariantoast
    Link
    It'd be nice if we could "scrape" other link aggregators or online communities and have posts from those sites automatically added to a "feed" that users here on Tildes could review and post...

    It'd be nice if we could "scrape" other link aggregators or online communities and have posts from those sites automatically added to a "feed" that users here on Tildes could review and post topics from.

    So, most of the topics I post, I first discover on websites like Hacker News and Lobsters.

    It'd be nice if Tildes (the website), could automatically scrape these sites every couple hours and add posts from these sites that meet a certain criterion (like X number of votes, X number of comments), to a feed on Tildes that users can browser and "push" links from that feed to topics on Tildes.

    It'd be kind of like a site-wide RSS feed that we could all use to post topics from.

    An even cooler thing would be to train an ArTiFiCiAl InTeLlIgEnCe to review posts in the feed automatically, post them automatically, and tag them automatically, but no one has time for that.


    Anyways, yeah, so Tildes would like, scrape Hacker News, specific subreddits, whatever, and when the site finds content on those other sites that meet a specific criterion, it adds the content from the other sites to a feed that Tildes users can browse and use to find topics to post.

    Like I said, sort of like a RSS feed, newsletter kind of thingy.

    Or, we could just cut out the middleman and have topics meeting specific criteria be posted to Tildes automatically from other, specific communities, but then we'd all have to go through and manually tag them and verify them and blah blah blah.

    4 votes
  17. [3]
    kfwyre
    (edited )
    Link
    I haven't had time to read through all of the comments in the thread yet, so if someone else has proposed something like this, let me know. Small, Randomized, Casual, Weekly Chat Groups We would...

    I haven't had time to read through all of the comments in the thread yet, so if someone else has proposed something like this, let me know.

    Small, Randomized, Casual, Weekly Chat Groups

    We would definitely need a better title, but here's what I mean by that: each week, all of the users who were active on Tildes in the past week get randomly sorted into groups of roughly 30 people (the specific number is flexible, but low is good). Each group is then given a thread, private to only those users, to post/chat with each other about whatever. I see them as similar to our recurring weekly posts, only without a specific focus and with a much smaller subset of users.

    At the end of each week, the groups are rerolled and new threads are created.

    Anyone who's ever done "breakout sessions" in a conference has a model for what I'm going for. I feel like the smaller, private rooms would let individuals get to know each other better, and the random selection means I'm able to run into anyone on the site, not just people with common interests, as I do in my day-to-day business here. I think it has the potential to facilitate interpersonal connections and relationships, in the same way doing an icebreaker with strangers at a conference does.

    4 votes
    1. [2]
      Algernon_Asimov
      Link Parent
      You would need an ability for people to opt out of these groups they didn't necessarily want to be part of, so they don't get bombarded with notifications for chatter they're not participating in.

      You would need an ability for people to opt out of these groups they didn't necessarily want to be part of, so they don't get bombarded with notifications for chatter they're not participating in.

      3 votes
      1. Eylrid
        Link Parent
        Or even better make it opt in (but still with the choice to leave at any time).

        Or even better make it opt in (but still with the choice to leave at any time).

        3 votes
  18. [2]
    moocow1452
    Link
    Also, could we have reccuring threads in the media groups where we have a "book club" and focus on one book/TV show/movie/game/anime and give our thoughts on it? I know that anybody could start...

    Also, could we have reccuring threads in the media groups where we have a "book club" and focus on one book/TV show/movie/game/anime and give our thoughts on it? I know that anybody could start one of these so I guess I was doing an interest check.

    3 votes
    1. Bauke
      Link Parent
      These in a more general way are already going on (or have been) in all the groups you mentioned: ~books: What are you reading these days? ~anime: What have you been watching/reading this week?...

      These in a more general way are already going on (or have been) in all the groups you mentioned:

      If you wanna focus in on anything just make a topic for it and the people will come.

      6 votes
  19. [5]
    mundane_and_naive
    (edited )
    Link
    Here's something fun. What if we have a platform with only downvote and no upvote, i.e. if you see something you don't like, you can vote to demote it but if you see something you like, you cannot...

    Here's something fun. What if we have a platform with only downvote and no upvote, i.e. if you see something you don't like, you can vote to demote it but if you see something you like, you cannot do anything. I wonder what kind of user behavior would proliferate there...

    For the sake of the experiment, let's say on this platform, users can create posts and downvote posts. This platform only has a frontpage with two sorting function: chronological (for content discovery) and by vote count (i.e. highest quality first). This will be the only social media platform around and no one knows any programming to make a better one. People in general are still allowed the option to not use it if they choose so over time, we expect the only stable user base left is comprised of those who engage willingly and so any patterns that arise should not be solely due to a desire to destroy the platform.

    First thing we can expect is that vote counts will always tend to go down, the top post as a consequence will have at most 0 vote. If a post have 0 vote, it's either a very high quality post or a new post. So the top of the feeds will be a mix of new and high quality posts, new being the majority (with a large enough user base, the amount of new content being created is vastly larger than the portion that has been seen and judged). Because of this, the top sections would be a pretty crappy indicator of post quality and for the most part it's probably not very different from the chronological sort. A casual user would default to either sorting option and their experience would probably be largely unaffected.

    That said, a dedicated user would still be able to discern the high quality ones, by comparing the two list and see which top posts appear in the voted sort but not the chronological sort. This is somewhat easier than having to browse through the whole list chronologically but still require some effort, so we can expect the majority of the user base would not do this. This is different from normal platform where high quality posts are promoted and thus gain lots of visibility and activity.

    On the other hand, the more heavily downvoted posts further down is very likely to be truly low quality, since these are the posts that only dedicated users who bother to scroll further down can see, and then they're still triggered enough to continue downvoting them. I expect the situation here to not be much different from conventional voting scheme.

    In conclusion, by implementing only downvote but not upvote mechanics, we have managed to create a platform that functions like a traditional forum for casual users, a way to allow dedicated users to find and interact with high quality posts somewhat easily, keep niche content from being too exposed (thus avoid an Eternal September type scenario), while still intolerant enough to push disruptive behavior into oblivion.

    3 votes
    1. [2]
      Eylrid
      Link Parent
      You could sort posts by score and age, in that order. That way the first posts you see are the oldest posts that haven't been downvoted, followed by the posts that are too new to have downvotes,...

      You could sort posts by score and age, in that order. That way the first posts you see are the oldest posts that haven't been downvoted, followed by the posts that are too new to have downvotes, then the oldest posts that only have one downvote, etc.

      Alternatively you could sort them by number of downvotes divided by age.

      1 vote
      1. mundane_and_naive
        Link Parent
        Hm, that's a sensible addition, we need a way to decide how to arrange those with the same vote count after all. If so, high quality posts would probably tend to be at the top of their respective...

        Hm, that's a sensible addition, we need a way to decide how to arrange those with the same vote count after all. If so, high quality posts would probably tend to be at the top of their respective score bracket, which is a handy rule-of-thumb indeed. Though I suspect truly high quality ones would still have a somewhat intermediate negative score, since the longer they stay near the top, the more chance they has to get downvoted. So finding wouldn't be too straightforward.

        Alternatively you could sort them by number of downvotes divided by age.

        That's one way to counteract the above-mentioned effect. In this vein, a better way would be the 'best' system on Reddit, since it takes into account the stochastic nature of the vote accumulation process. The math details may need modification to account for the fact that only negative points are collected of course. I'm no statistician so I can't say what kind of difference that could lead to. I'll just assume that if the math works the way it's intended, the resulted ranking would be more or less similar to if the same list of contents were put on Reddit and sorted by its 'best' system. So sorting wise we're back to the status quo I suppose.

        The only other difference with this platform that I can think of is the type of people who enjoy it perhaps. Our system provide only tools for expressing negativity, so perhaps people participating here regularly would tend to be more negative. On the other hand, people may comment more when they want to express their approval for OP, since they cannot communicate that with votes anymore, so the overall atmosphere might be more positive, maybe.

        1 vote
    2. [2]
      wirelyre
      Link Parent
      I've been thinking about a score that counts when users see a post or comment but decide not to interact with it. Would that be a better or worse metric than votes alone? You wouldn't necessarily...

      I've been thinking about a score that counts when users see a post or comment but decide not to interact with it. Would that be a better or worse metric than votes alone?

      You wouldn't necessarily need to keep track of everyone's viewing habits either. I bet you could do some statistics to model impressions of the comment page by the content of the article, quality of the discussion, number of participants, and age of the submission.

      1 vote
      1. mundane_and_naive
        Link Parent
        I think their relationship would be similar to that between 'views' and 'likes' on Youtube. Maybe there's some statistics about that which we can use to infer for our system.

        I've been thinking about a score that counts when users see a post or comment but decide not to interact with it. Would that be a better or worse metric than votes alone?

        I think their relationship would be similar to that between 'views' and 'likes' on Youtube. Maybe there's some statistics about that which we can use to infer for our system.

        2 votes
  20. mrbig
    (edited )
    Link
    I wish we had a lot more mods and moderation was less stringent as a result - or at least less personalized. I also wish users could create groups and Tildes were less of a Usenet 2.0 And that...

    I wish we had a lot more mods and moderation was less stringent as a result - or at least less personalized.

    I also wish users could create groups and Tildes were less of a Usenet 2.0

    And that Tildes were more comedy friendly

    3 votes
  21. hungariantoast
    Link
    I'd love it if we could experiment with supporting other lightweight markup languages in addition to Markdown. Other markup languages like: AsciiDoc Creole MediaWiki Org reStructuredText Textile...

    I'd love it if we could experiment with supporting other lightweight markup languages in addition to Markdown.

    Other markup languages like:

    Are pretty cool. We obviously wouldn't need to (and probably shouldn't) try to support all of those, but I think accepting other markup languages as valid syntax for writing and posting comments would be awesome.

    Even better, we could create our own markup language! I think there's a lot of interesting features we could implement if we went this route, although a custom markup language definitely wouldn't be necessary for those.

    For instance, if I want to reference another topic on Tildes, I wish I could type something like [~news/...] to begin searching, in an interactive menu, for topics in ~news that begin with whatever I type in place of ....

    This could kind of work like Bash/ZSH shells completions, for you Linux nerds out there.

    So like, I would type [~tildes/Uno, then hit my Tab key, and from there I would get an interactive menu listing topics in ~tildes that start with Uno.

    For those of you who aren't familiar with shell completions, here's a video that shows what I'm thinking of:

    ZSH Completion Demo

    Of course, to do this we would probably need to "over-program" the textarea for writing comments with a bunch of JavaScript and other stuff, but it's an interesting idea.


    Clearly the comment box on Tildes just needs to become a web-based frontend to a Jupyter instance.

    2 votes
  22. [3]
    hungariantoast
    Link
    Having elevated moderation privileges on a topic-by-topic basis could be interesting. So, the OP of a topic could, just as an example, be granted elevated privileges to remove comments inside that...

    Having elevated moderation privileges on a topic-by-topic basis could be interesting.

    So, the OP of a topic could, just as an example, be granted elevated privileges to remove comments inside that specific topic, or apply labels and give votes with greater weight.

    This could be useful for some recurring topics, like the ones that ask users to actually describe stuff and not just like, list things, or whatever.

    Or, if someone starts a topic for showing off desktops/rices/workstations, they might want to enforce the rule that you can't post just a picture, that you have to at least talk about your setup. The OP could enforce those rules through topic-specific privileges.

    The issue with this would be that we (probably) wouldn't want users creating, willy-nilly, topics that they could moderate. We'd want to avoid the "little fiefdoms" problem.

    Maybe the ability to create "structured topics" where OP has elevated privileges could be a tier in the trust system?

    Maybe users who haven't gained the ability to post their own "structured topics" should be able to ask a moderator to grant them elevated privileges on a topic they've posted.

    3 votes
    1. [2]
      cfabbro
      (edited )
      Link Parent
      Did you mean to reply to my comment suggesting roughly the same idea? Speaking of which... IMO another neat idea would be for trusted users to be able to move comments to underneath others for...

      Did you mean to reply to my comment suggesting roughly the same idea?

      Speaking of which... IMO another neat idea would be for trusted users to be able to move comments to underneath others for just such occasions, since for whatever reason I have noticed way more users here accidentally making new top-level comments instead of replying to the person they wanted to than ever occurred on reddit. I think the top-level comment box being at the bottom and open by default plays a huge part of that.

      p.s. created a related gitlab issue since this seems to be a recurring problem here: https://gitlab.com/tildes/tildes/issues/571

      1 vote
      1. hungariantoast
        Link Parent
        My comment was meant to be a top level comment, but it probably should have just been a reply to your comment to be honest. I even bookmarked your comment earlier today, but just didn't think...

        My comment was meant to be a top level comment, but it probably should have just been a reply to your comment to be honest. I even bookmarked your comment earlier today, but just didn't think about writing my comment as a reply instead of a top level when it came time.

        I would love for moving comments to be a feature though, because users miss-posting replies does seem to happen quite often.

        1 vote
  23. [5]
    hungariantoast
    Link
    It has been talked about before, but I would love a feature for suggesting edits to other user's comments or topics. So like, if I notice a user has made a spelling error, I can open up the...

    It has been talked about before, but I would love a feature for suggesting edits to other user's comments or topics.

    So like, if I notice a user has made a spelling error, I can open up the "source" of their comment, see the raw Markdown/HTML/whatever for their comment, edit the "raw source" and "push" my edit to them almost like a personal message.

    From there, the user whose content I suggested an edit for would get a notification. When they open the notification, they'll see a "diff view" of what changes I proposed to their content and they can either accept, ignore, or cancel my suggestion.

    This "diff view" could look like diffs in GitLab, or maybe diffs on Wikipedia.

    Personally, I can't count the number of times I've spotted mistakes in comments and topics and wanted to say something, but not really felt like it was important enough to make a comment or send a message over. I'm sure I've made plenty of mistakes as well that other users have thought about making me aware of.

    Is it really that important of a feature? Nah, but I do think it would be super cool to have on the site. Maybe it would help foster a better sense of community?

    It should probably be possible for users to set, on a topic-by-topic or comment-by-comment basis, whether they want to allow users to send them edit suggestions. There should probably also be an option to disallow edit suggestions on a profile basis. So, if @userA doesn't want to receive edit suggestions ever on any of their topics or comments, then they should have the option to set that.

    This doesn't just have to be for comment and topic text either. The idea could be expanded as a way for anyone to suggest title, tag, or link edits to topics as well, even if they don't have the moderation privileges to make those changes.

    2 votes
    1. [4]
      Algernon_Asimov
      Link Parent
      Or it could result in a bunch of grammar pedants running rampant across Tildes - and a lot of people getting very pissed off by them. (And I say this as a grammar pedant myself!) Remember our...

      Maybe it would help foster a better sense of community?

      Or it could result in a bunch of grammar pedants running rampant across Tildes - and a lot of people getting very pissed off by them. (And I say this as a grammar pedant myself!) Remember our high-profile user who absolutely refused to use capitalisation, and who got very angry at the slightest hint of disagreement or disapproval? Imagine someone like that receiving a dozen edit suggestions to their comments. It could result in a lot of bad feeling.

      There should probably also be an option to disallow edit suggestions on a profile basis. So, if @userA doesn't want to receive edit suggestions ever on any of their topics or comments, then they should have the option to set that.

      I would definitely avail myself of this option. I don't really want my comments to be crowd-sourced. They're mine, warts and all.

      3 votes
      1. balooga
        Link Parent
        I think you mean crowdsourced (no hyphen). KIDDING! You make a great point about this. That sounds extremely annoying. I wonder if the edit-suggestion idea could still be viable if there were an...

        I don't really want my comments to be crowd-sourced.

        I think you mean crowdsourced (no hyphen).

        KIDDING! You make a great point about this. That sounds extremely annoying. I wonder if the edit-suggestion idea could still be viable if there were an explicit "do not correct grammar or spelling" rule. Also we keep talking about user trust ratings maybe coming in the future... if you make an edit request on a comment of mine and I accept it, that could boost your trust score by some tiny amount. More to the point, if you're abusing people with edit pedantry, they could reject your individual requests (you incur a small trust penalty each time) or they could block your requests altogether (and you get a bigger penalty, maybe). Just spitballing here.

        3 votes
      2. [2]
        hungariantoast
        Link Parent
        I feel like users being extremely annoyed or pushed over the edge by an "edit suggestions" feature would be in the minority. I think the utility the feature provides realistically has more pros...

        Or it could result in a bunch of grammar pedants running rampant across Tildes - and a lot of people getting very pissed off by them.

        I feel like users being extremely annoyed or pushed over the edge by an "edit suggestions" feature would be in the minority. I think the utility the feature provides realistically has more pros than cons.

        Seriously, is our community really that bad? I don't think it is.

        Regardless, if a user is really so prone to being upset by suggested edits then, like I said, they could (and should) just turn the feature off for their content. That could either mean users still suggest edits but the receiver of those suggestions never sees them, or users can't make suggestions at all to that receiver's content.

        Another option for the feature could be that, instead of getting a notification for each suggested edit, like how you get a notification for each reply or message, users could instead choose to only be able to access those suggestions via a * Edits button on their comment or topic. The button could sit next to the Edit Delete Bookmark buttons on their comments/topics and clicking it could do... something to reveal the various edit suggestions.

        Edit suggestions could also be signed, so that the receiver of a suggestion would know who made the suggestion. Perhaps that would make it less prone to abuse?

        While I imagine quick spellchecking and grammar fixes probably would make up the majority of edit suggestions, the scope of stuff the feature could provide is way, way bigger than just that.

        1 vote
        1. Algernon_Asimov
          Link Parent
          For the sake of transparency, and to save people's time, it should be clear up front that a particular comment or post is not open for suggestions. People shouldn't waste their time writing out a...

          they could (and should) just turn the feature off for their content. That could either mean users still suggest edits but the receiver of those suggestions never sees them, or users can't make suggestions at all to that receiver's content.

          For the sake of transparency, and to save people's time, it should be clear up front that a particular comment or post is not open for suggestions. People shouldn't waste their time writing out a suggested edit, only to send it into a black hole where it's never seen again. There should be a "suggest edit" button which is present on comments or posts that are open to edits, and which is simply not present on non-editable comments or posts.

          1 vote
  24. [9]
    cfabbro
    Link
    Another idea I just thought of: What if on certain text topics, the submitter was granted temporary moderator powers for that topic? Not that it's been an issue for this particular topic, but...

    Another idea I just thought of:

    What if on certain text topics, the submitter was granted temporary moderator powers for that topic? Not that it's been an issue for this particular topic, but having control of your own topic to keep things on track could potentially be really nice.

    1 vote
    1. [8]
      JakeTheDog
      Link Parent
      I can see conflicts of interest arising here, especially if the OP is making a statement/argument and comments are critical.

      I can see conflicts of interest arising here, especially if the OP is making a statement/argument and comments are critical.

      1. [7]
        cfabbro
        Link Parent
        Yeah, that's definitely the most obvious potential issue, however I think under many circumstances it could be very useful and help improve the quality of discourse significantly. And ultimately,...

        Yeah, that's definitely the most obvious potential issue, however I think under many circumstances it could be very useful and help improve the quality of discourse significantly. And ultimately, anyone who abuses the feature could simply have the ability removed, which fits into one of Tildes core philosophies:

        Trust people, but punish abusers

        The large majority of users on a site, generally, behave in good faith and are only interested in legitimately participating and contributing. However, there is always a group of users actively trying to undermine others, and even though they are usually a tiny minority, sites often have to build in such a way to prevent these bad-faith users from being able to do much damage.

        This tends to mean that many, potentially, powerful tools cannot be added to the site, since malicious use of them would be too dangerous. Instead of restricting capabilities by needing to design around the worst way any tool could be used, Tildes will default to trusting users to behave in good faith, and punish people that take advantage of that trust. Punishments may involve losing access to certain tools or capabilities, being banned from communities or the site as a whole.

        1 vote
        1. [6]
          JakeTheDog
          Link Parent
          Well, it would be helpful to have moderation in the first place. Why do you favor the OP to have that power? Why not make it per-category instead, so at least that person has familiarity with the...

          Well, it would be helpful to have moderation in the first place. Why do you favor the OP to have that power? Why not make it per-category instead, so at least that person has familiarity with the field?

          1. mundane_and_naive
            Link Parent
            Job training for would-be moderators perhaps? Like 'We see that you have a good track record of tagging and labeling well. Although we're not sure if we should let you moderate all posts in our...

            Why do you favor the OP to have that power?

            Job training for would-be moderators perhaps? Like 'We see that you have a good track record of tagging and labeling well. Although we're not sure if we should let you moderate all posts in our group yet, since it's a big responsibility and quite different from the individual tasks. We can, however, let you undergo a trial period on your own submissions first, which you should be most comfortable with, to get you familiarize with the overall workflow, while we also get to see how you confront public backlash and manage personal bias.'

            3 votes
          2. [4]
            cfabbro
            Link Parent
            We already do have moderation in the form of comment labels. And outside of those, the rest are currently completely under Deimos' control. However for topics like my own here, and all the other...

            We already do have moderation in the form of comment labels. And outside of those, the rest are currently completely under Deimos' control. However for topics like my own here, and all the other recurring topics occurring on the site, the users that post them would greatly benefit from having some more control over them IMO.

            1. [3]
              JakeTheDog
              Link Parent
              I'm not saying we don't. Just replying to your comment about specific post mods. This is what I'm getting at. What are the specific benefits? For recurring topics like "books" and "things that...

              We already do have moderation in the form of comment labels.

              I'm not saying we don't. Just replying to your comment about specific post mods.

              the users that post them would greatly benefit from having some more control over them IMO.

              This is what I'm getting at. What are the specific benefits? For recurring topics like "books" and "things that people are currently up to" I can see, but I feel like those topics are best modded by a team rather than an individual because of their recurring nature and thus cumulative size/popularity.

              edit: for the record I hope I'm not coming off as aggressive. I'm just missing the piece in your mind's eye of what exactly the benefits would be. Maybe illustrate it with two examples from your experiences?

              1 vote
              1. [2]
                cfabbro
                (edited )
                Link Parent
                Ah okay, yeah I don't think I explained it very well. I didn't envision giving the topic authors complete control over a topic, but simply granting them some elevated privileges similar to mods or...

                Ah okay, yeah I don't think I explained it very well. I didn't envision giving the topic authors complete control over a topic, but simply granting them some elevated privileges similar to mods or maybe even some unique abilities (like granting them more label weight in that topic so they could quickly hide noise, reduce joke/offtopic visibility, etc). However the community would still be involved through use of labels/votes which could counteract those actions, and trusted users could also verify the actions of the topic author so they could undo them if necessary and also report any abuse.

                p.s. And I don't think this should be something available/active on every text topic... but on the recurring ones I think it could potentially be beneficial and appropriate.

                3 votes
                1. JakeTheDog
                  Link Parent
                  I would agree with the extra weight.

                  I would agree with the extra weight.

                  1 vote