A group for DIY Drones moderators to discuss best community management practices.

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Moderator Basics

These are the basic instructions for moderators:

Most of what you'll be doing is approving (or not) blog posts and otherwise keeping things running smoothly.

With blog posts, the key things to check before approving are:

  1. Does the post start with an image/video or at least have one very close to the top?
  2. Are videos embedded? (Not a link to a video elsewhere)
  3. Is the post informative, rather than asking a question or a request for help? (Those should be sent to the discussion forum).

Feel free to make modest edits (such as moving a photo to the top, or turning a video link into an embed) yourself. If the post should be in the discussion forum instead, paste the text into a Friend request to the author explaining that and delete the post. (Using a Friend request will hopefully take some of the sting out of having to reject their post ;-) )

When Moderating Comments:

Deletion is really the course of last resort, and tends to cause more trouble than it solves. Instead, we follow this escalation process: 

  • 1st course of action in case of TOS abuse: Gentle note in the comments asking people to play nice
  • 2nd: Edit the comment to remove offending piece and add: "[Moderator: Text edited to comply with site TOS]". It's nice to PM the member with an explanation, warning
  • 3rd: Lock comments. Also PM member with explanation/warning
  • 4th (only in cases of gross abuse): Delete comment. PM member
  • 5th (very rare, and only after multiple warnings): Ban member

Our Culture and Values:

Mark Harrison, one of our star moderators, articulated our culture and policies best with this post, which I'll just quote verbatim:

Here's my general feeling about a lot of things on this site; in fact, it's pretty much my general philosophy for large parts of my life:

        "It's more important to enable good things than prevent bad things"

For diydrones, this generally means:

--Be generous in accepting blog posts. We're not at a point where there are more submissions than can be confortably digested in a day. Likewise, the term "drone" is evolving at such a fast rate it's hard to pin down exactly what it means for everyone. So, I'm happy to lump in quadcopters, FPV, gimbals, RC, artistic aerial videos, electronics, radios... all kinds of stuff that meets my nebulous criterion of "generally interesting to the diy drone community."

Now of course it can be protested, "what if we're flooded by dozens or hundreds of posts on marginally related topic X?" And my response would be, "let's wait until that happens; we'll have tons more context and it will be easier to make a specific decision then than make some globally encompassing set of rules now. We may all even be a little bit smarter and a little bit wiser!"

-- Be generous in approving users. Lots of people aren't comfortable with revealing too much information about themselves, or may not have a particularly cogent reason for joining a site. I'm somewhat of an exception to this case... "Are you asking what I'm interested in? Let's talk about me, it's one of the most interesting topics we can discuss, don't you agree?" But for a lot of people, they may interested in the topic, but not interested in telling you why.

-- Feel free to make mistakes, and be nice when other people are making mistakes. Sometimes the most interesting things happen when things go awry. For better or worse, sometimes the most education things as well!

I think this is pretty much in agreement with how the site has been run historically. It's a site for amateurs, by amateurs (keeping in mind the defintion of "amateur"... from the French "lover of"), and as such has had a pretty wide-ranging scope of what's acceptable. That's served the site well, enabling it to be as relevant (or even more!) in 2013 as it was when it was founded.

Of course there are big exceptions to this "don't sweat the bad stuff" philosophy -- brain surgery, rocket launches, and skydiving come to mind -- but I think it's a useful guideline for a site such as ours.

 

More instructions:

Guidelines

When is a blog not a blog?

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Comments

  • Moderator
    I'm very sorry, clearly I misunderstood. You can understand then how it seemed out of proportion, and what's more, very out if character for Mark also, who has always been one of the most professional, sometimes soft-spoken, mods here.
  • Let's not get out of hand here. Mark is merely suggesting Joshua take a breather, not step down, from what I read.  This is not survivor.  After observing things for a while, Joshua will be even more of an asset.  Maybe he can see that there's a method to the madness.

  • Moderator
    I'm going to have to hold to a difference of opinion with you Mark. I believe Joshua is a net asset to our moderators. I'm frankly quite put off that you'd suggest he step down over that minor bit of transparency, after all the much more troublesome conduct we've observed from other mods in the last two years, most of whom are still here, sporting the badge. Vicious public arguments, personal attacks, with users and mods, and Joshua shows a tiny bit of frustrated transparency, and you are not only ready to cast him off, you are the first to call for it. I'm a little disappointed, it is not like you.
  • Moderator

    TJ, "jeanevery" seems real but kinda weird.  maybe working for one of the chinese vendors?  I've started calling Chris' company 3-door now!

  • Moderator

    Joshua, regarding your latest comment ("Peter all I have to say is..."): moderators are supposed to subtract from the overall level of drama, not add to it.  You're doing lots of other things to help people out, perhaps you should consider leaving moderation duties to others at this time.

  • Admin

    Hi All,

    Is"jeanevery" for real? I get the feeling that she wants to use DIY Drones as a social forum. Comments?

    Regards,

    TCIII

  • Moderator
    @Joshua, you just posted in public that you stand by deleting the post.
    How can you still say that after being advised not to delete anything?
    There is already more talk about "censoring" again, unfortunately directed against poor Mark who is only trying to help.
  • Ron, that post does not contravene any of those points, nor the comments in it.  There was nothing about "application" of a weaponized drone.  People were just debating the reality of the ad.  There were no pictures of the drone with weapons, or attacking anything.  This is consistent with #1 and #2.  Other than drifting off topic, in world politics, I still find nothing wrong with that post.

    Just because a post CAN lead to contravening of the rules, doesn't mean we have the right to refuse to post it. The members are aware of the rules, and have complied.  If they don't our jobs is to remind them, gently.  The reminder serves to reinforce the rules. We cannot force people to obey rules here.  

    As evident with Kevin Finisterre, if someone is just anti-social they will find ways to disrupt the group.  We just need to show them that it's more beneficial to follow the rules than not.  At the end of the day, Kevin did have good intentions, but his method was disruptive.  Sometimes, having such people around can ultimately be of a benefit.  It's the cost of living in a free society.

  • 2 more cents...

    It still comes down to the site having rules that may or may not be applied equally to all postings, based on the content. this bad enough for the general membership, but if the moderators are unable to determine what should be or should not be approved, then there is a problem. If there is actually an acceptable grey area of topic or content, then that should be worked into the site rules/policies/guidelines for members.

    I agree with much of what Mike says. And Ellison too, nothing is black and white, for sure, but when you have published rules and don't necessarily follow them all the time, for whatever reason...that causes conflict. 

    The rules say no discussion of military topics, that's pretty black and white to me. I don't come to DIY Drones to discuss military use or the sexiness of military hardware, there are other sites for that. I am here because I am interested in what others are doing with their projects and the hardware/software they acquire through this site.

    To re-iterate, "

    1. [6.]No discussion of military or weaponized applications of UAVs. This site is just about amateur and civilian use.
    2. [7.]No discussion of illegal or harmful use of UAVs will be tolerated. Responsible use of UAVs is at the core of our mission. That means conforming with all laws in the United States, where this site is based, and insisting that our members elsewhere follow the laws of their own countries. In addition, we feel that part of our responsibility it to help the relevant authorities understand what's possible with amateur UAVs, so they can make better-informed policies and laws. So we have encouraged all relevant regulators, defense agencies and law enforcement agencies to become members here and even participate to help them do that, and many have. In addition, if we see any discussion of UAV use that we feel is potentially illegal or intended to do harm, we will bring it to the attention to the relevant authorities, and will comply with any legal request they make for information about users (although we don't know much that isn't public; see the next item)."

    And that is pretty black and white to me...

  • Nothing is black and white in this world Mike.  Military posts have been approved by Chris himself, in the past.  Ultimately this forum is about providing content that our users will enjoy.  The rules are simply guidelines that allow us to drive the overall theme of the board. The only way to have absolutely consistent moderation is to have one moderator. However, I say the inconsistency is what makes for variation, and an interesting forum.  Life's about living with imperfections.

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100KM

commercial advertisment post

Hi dear moderators, Recently I notice there are some " pure " advertising post from Skywalker / TopXgun ect. Where some of the post being deleted some make it to the blog post. I'm not really sure if this type of " blog " have a place here or we should delete it. As for the Skywalker, I saw their blog being deleted and a few day latter they post again with some minor modification, but still look 100% " advertisement " to me. It seems that they do " NOT " get the message or understand what their…

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Developer

Commercial Groups on DIYD

I think we need to discussion about 'commercial' groups like this new one i just noticed (especially since as the site is getting bigger)http://diydrones.com/group/outdoor-roboticsA quick visual search through gave me these 'commercial' looking groupshttp://diydrones.com/group/voltahttp://diydrones.com/group/ugcshttp://diydrones.com/group/uavsaShould we not be thinking that groups created by commercial enterprises require some form of sponsorship of the site or development work in the DiyDrone…

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