Though its moderation model has had and will continue to have its pitfalls, Reddit’s user oriented moderation style is a great example of how social media outlets can encourage good behavior on the part of their users through a ‘rewards and consequences’ system. Fellow users can click on a poster’s username to see their past comments and posts, which many users use to judge the validity of a user’s current posts. Likewise, people can ‘down vote’ posts and comments which don’t add to a given conversation and after a set number of down votes have been given, the site will hide the post or comment from the general comment thread. Though there are issues and abuses of Reddit’s model, it is still a great example of the ways in which social media users can self-moderate their communities. Good behavior is encouraged, while bad behavior is discouraged and can negatively impact a user’s interactions with other on the site as a whole.
Shades of mudslinging weasels. By that I mean this nascent discussion of crowd sourced news aggregation, selection, and editing sites reminds me of the discussions about how to control trolls on listservs.
It also makes me remember how Slashdot developed its system for moving comments up or down, based on the reputation someone earned within the community.
See what I mean? “A user-based moderation system is employed to filter out abusive comments. Every comment is initially given a score of -1 to +2, with a default score of +1 for registered users, 0 for anonymous users (Anonymous Coward), +2 for users with high "karma”, or ?1 for users with low “karma”. As moderators read comments attached to articles, they click to moderate the comment, either up (+1) or down (?1). Moderators may choose to attach a particular descriptor to the comments as well, such as normal, offtopic, flamebait, troll, redundant, insightful, interesting, informative, funny, overrated, or underrated, with each corresponding to a -1 or +1 rating. So a comment may be seen to have a rating of “+1 insightful” or “-1 troll”.
Moderation points add to a user’s karma, and users with high “karma” are eligible to become moderators themselves. The system does not promote regular users as “moderators” and instead assigns five moderation points at a time to users based on the number of comments they have entered in the system – once a user’s moderation points are used up, they can no longer moderate articles (though they can be assigned more moderation points at a later date). Paid staff editors have an unlimited number of moderation points.“
from Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slashdot