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:


When is a blog not a blog?

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  • Moderator

    Oh, and also:

    • It's been traditional for new mods to introduce themselves and type a couple of lines regarding their interests and how they became involved with the site. Feel free to keep the tradition going!
  • Moderator

    New Mods:

    • Welcome!
    • You may be suffering episodes of disorientation or confusion when dealing with the moderation tools.
    • Do not be alarmed. This is normal and is a standard feature of the Ning platform!  Lots of features you may have expected or taken for granted on other platforms are for some reason absent here.
    • It's not too bad so long as everyone comments here when they do something such as removing a post.
    • There don't seem to be activity logs which is why you'll occasionally see queries about the status of a post that's gone missing, etc.
  • Developer

    Thanks Mario

  • Moderator

    No reply. I agree with Bill and Craig, though....especially after seeing some of his more recent posts. I thought he had been making an effort.

    Darius has been suspended. Let the church bells ring. 

  • Developer

    Hi mods,

    I think there should be a rule that bringing the site into disrepute* can lead to suspension and permanent expulsion. It’s not like he’s exposing some smoking gun of a cover just. Just being a pain in the arse. The other issue is that the other members are now replying in ever more discourteous tones. That has a real and measurable impact on the quality of the site.

    I think no response from Darius Jack should constitute suspension of his account.

    (As for post not approved, the previous pattern was the add a line at the top of the pst "DO NOT APPROVE UNTIL CONSENSUS REACHED" in red and discuss here if it should be approved.)

    *I think the rules already cover this, and DJ has had enough time to either improve or move on on his own steam.

  • Developer

    @Mario Did you get anywhere with Darius?

    Quoting Leonard:

    [2:01:45 AM Leonard Hall: I believe that Darius Jack is breaking the number 1 rule:
    Remember the Golden Rule. Don't be a jerk to anyone, be they other members, moderators or the owners. This is not a public park, and you have no constitutionally-mandated right to free speech. If you're creating a hostile or unpleasant environment, you'll be warned, then if it continues you'll be suspended.
    He is being a jerk and he is creating a hostile and unpleasant environment.
    I also think he is also compromising the safety of our system with misinformation.
    He is also derailing support for people who need help getting things working correctly.
    He is also spamming the discussions to promote his business.

  • Moderator

    As a new mod I must admit to struggling a little with the interface, I'm getting semi-regular emails telling me that new articles are pending approval. Whenever I click the link it tells me i'm finished moderating and there's nothing to do. The link appears generic, ie no specific post ID but I'm slightly concerned that in clicking the link I'm just auto approving things. Is there a way to see what i've approved? 

    One other thing, I see a new members awaiting approval link, are there criteria for new members that we need to approve against? Is there a banned IP list or anything?


    Hi Chris, I too am a new mod, but I have been looking at each new member applicant's profile, to see if they wrote an interest in drones, of are clearly spam advertising etc. I agree an IP list would be perfect, but not made for this blog platform I think.

    Fo blog post approval, I too get the email, but generally if there is no blog to approve once clicked it means it's either already been deleted or approved.

    cheers, Bo

  • Moderator

    I too have had no reply to yesterday's message.


    No apologies, is good to have Mods take part. Don't feel like anything wrong has been done. We should post here if there are member issues, so others can know.


    I too have noticed blog approvals being made too quickly. Is there a remove until edited function? 

  • Moderator
    I sent Darius a friend request last night with a message saying to please add me so that we can discuss a few things. Nothing back yet.
  • 3D Robotics
    Sgt Ric: my bad, I encouraged him to post, since I thought it was an interesting subject. But I didn't review his post and can't vouch for its quality.
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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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1 Reply

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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3 Replies