New mods

Hi everyone

The time has come for us to decide our mod policy. I’ll put two questions to the group:

  • how long should mods serve? Indefinitely? Fixed period? Until death by covid or arguing about covid?

  • if the need arises for a new mod (or a wholesale change of the guard), what process should we follow to select a new mod? Do the current mods select the new ones? Is there some kind of (ugh) popularity contest or “vote”? Do we settle it with fisticuffs on the bank of the Thames?

This is an important feature of this board and I’d like to get as many thoughts on the subject as possible.

Cheers all


Year long terms…simple yes or no vote for their continuance…


Gerard’s one year suggestion seems reasonable

“how long should mods serve? Indefinitely? Fixed period? Until death by covid or arguing about covid?”


One objective suggestion is to continue moderation for 28 days after death by arguing about covid. Looks like everyone is going to die while arguing about covid; hence, under present counting methods, ‘of or from’ arguing about covid; arguing about covid is therefore a dangerous disease. UK arguing-about-covid cases number about 50m, and will double if Imperial College win the testing contract. This is a complete failure of the vaccination against arguing-about-covid programme (which began with small, supposedly harmless arguing-about-covid in Feb 2020) according to proponents of natural methods for prevention of arguing-about-covid which include arguing about football and extreme measures like not arguing at all, a suggestion that has earned the ridicule of arguing-about-covidiots.


Getting volunteers might be the first step. If anyone steps up, then a vote of any registered posters who want to. I guess a study of the mod rules, and some discussion of that at the same time might be handy. Things seem to have gone pretty well so far.


I really think you should ask Bungling Boris for a job, advising government on how to deal with the plan er pandemic, miscreants selling snake oil and those pesky anti-vaxxers! No doubt your policy advice would be at least as good as that he’s getting from Klaus & Bill.

On a serious note, I’m happy with both @GKH and @RhisiartGwilym 's suggestions. One year with no limit on repeat terms, and voluteers stand still while everyone else takes a step backwards!



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Thanks for all the comments so far. We still need more of those who comment and use this board to pitch in, please. How do we vote on mods? How do we volunteer?

Anyone and everyone here please do add your voice to this discussion.

Many thanks

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Hi folks, moderators are always a good idea but can lead to censorship if procedures and guidelines for their operation ( including appeal procedures) are not clearly and transparently set out - to date we have nothing to worry about imo.
One thing in the post on moderators is slightly confusing:

" If You See a Problem, Flag It

Moderators have special authority; they are responsible for this forum. But so are you. With your help, moderators can be community facilitators, not just janitors or police.

When you see bad behavior, don’t reply. It encourages the bad behavior by acknowledging it, consumes your energy, and wastes everyone’s time. Just flag it. If enough flags accrue, action will be taken, either automatically or by moderator intervention.

In order to maintain our community, moderators reserve the right to remove any content and any user account for any reason at any time. Moderators do not preview new posts; the moderators and site operators take no responsibility for any content posted by the community."

  • how do users of the forum “flag it” ?

The other question is how do we ensure that future moderators don’t abuse the position given the wide words used above: “moderators reserve the right to remove any content and any user account for any reason at any time

Query 3 are there any formal appeal procedures to say an appeals panel different from moderators?

On selection/election of moderators - election is usually preferable, maybe 1 year renewable automatically unless new volunteers add their names to the hat at a reasonable time before elections, similarly for any appeals panel that may be set up as a back stop.

  • just thoughts, I’m happy to follow the majority on this.


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If a decision is disputed formally perhaps we could put the decision to a vote… P.S Thank you mods…such work is so rarely properly appreciated…


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:grinning: Rock on @GKH


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Very minor point regarding this one:

…Rather than taking an existing topic in a radically different direction, use Reply as a Linked Topic.

One of the pleasures of this group is how the digressions take us in interesting directions. Whether that counts as Off Topic is moot, and the laissez faire interpretation of this guideline is much appreciated. No change suggested.

Personally I think after a few dozen exchanges it probably is time for consolidation but that’s an arbitrary figure based on relatively small base of active posters.

Let’s not try and fix what ain’t broke.

If there’s a shortage of mods happy to throw this hat into the ring.


Hi @CJ1
At the end of each post there is the Reply button with the arrow next to it and then to the left of that are three dots. If you click on those dots a whole series of icons come up (from right to left a spanner, a rubbish bin, a bookmark, a pencil and then a flag). Clicking on the flag is how you Flag a post for the moderators to look at. Flagging is automatically anonymous so the post will be indicated as flagged but it won’t indicate who has clicked on the flag.
Hope that helps.


Great, I didn’t know where too look either, although, I might have found it if I thought the process necessary…

P.S re: punctuation (also), why is it that the relationship between subject and object is such a laissez-faire exercise in English?..I now find myself constantly asking (of my own work and others); “to what do you refer?” I suppose this would also apply to; whom, when and where (but again how are these terms known collectively?)! For goodness sake specify for, as far as I am aware, there now appear to be no formal rules in written English! #DumbleDimandDimbleDumb

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:grin: You’re welcome

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I think that cut and paste often causes this. A logical sequence of sentences preserves the object-subject relationship. The author then jiggles the text about and because (s)he knows the meaning they originally held, the decontextualisation is not visible to them.

Another common artefact is where the digression is moved above the text it originally branched off from. Results in clunky text that ought to be apparent to a decent proofreader. Few texts seem to benefit from this these days.

I was taught to read my own text aloud. If you trip over words, for example, it is probably too long a sentence.

The modern habit I hate most is the multiple hyperlinks per paragraph. Each and every one poses a cognitive dilemma: do I click this or do I carry on reading. The authors flow is thus disrupted and meaning can be obfuscated. OffGuardian articles are especially guilty of this, and few worse than C J Hopkins. It feels to this reader as though I’m being ranted at. Not the way to win friends and influence people, not so?

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…And thats an infringement of “stay on topic” right there :grin:

I agree with almost everything you have said @CJ1 .

My one concern is “flagging it”. Perhaps this is a procedure for the Mods to agree however, I think it unfair to flag something without the offender being told they have been “flagged” and what the reason is for this. If we really aim for the lightest of moderation, perhaps the offender should be given the opportunity to justify their alleged offence before any black marks or posts being deleted. Finally, this should all be done openly, not behind closed doors.

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Hi @PatB flagging is a difficult one I agree - but an open “punch up” maybe more damaging? Perhaps we should have a “query button” to trigger a question in the form of a private message from the “offended” to the “offending” poster - quite often offence is given or taken in misreading or loose wording, which could be settled with a private message exchange.
Just thinking aloud!?


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