Here's a great idea for this forum:
Creating Your Own Reality
By Peter Rothberg for The Nation
Thursday Aug 25, 2005
Regular posters to the Comments section of our blogs will notice a new feature: "Ignore this person," a simple function that allows participants in online discussions to render invisible posts that they find offensive or off-topic.
How best to moderate a free-wheeling online discussion is a question which has bedeviled scores of webmasters. At The Nation, we're particularly disinclined to ever censor anyone based on political perspectives, especially those we abhor. But it can be disruptive when, as happened recently, someone decides to paste dozens of versions of the same Ann Coulter piece to all five of our weblogs in an obvious effort to disrupt the conversation. Or when someone simply unleashes an obscene tirade with no argument being made.
So what we've come up with is a way for readers to create their own realities by offering the option of "ignoring" a given poster.
We hope that everyone will employ this option sparingly and will use it only as a last-resort to rid themselves of those few posters explicitly trying to prevent the free and feisty exchange of ideas. We strongly discourage anyone using it to shield themselves from unwelcome points of view.
What a great idea! More than one thread here has deliberately been pulled entirely off track. If this forum is going to be any use, we badly need something like this.
I have actually already suggested this in the “Forum Suggestions” section, and Sam’s webmaster said he would ask Sam about it, so, I will keep my fingers crossed.
FWIW, this board runs on a platform for which such a modular function already exists, so, in theory, it shouldn’t be too taxing to add it.
As a final note, however, such a feature is most effective on a board that requires registration. Since this board currently allows almost full privs for unregistered guests, the ignore feature would only be partially of use.
Still, better than nothin’, eh?
Hmmmmm, three guesses who the ‘no’ vote is and the first two don’t count.
How about considering this poll a petition to put the idea to an ‘official vote’?
For anyone who uses FireFox, there is a plugin that allows one to ignore specific users on phpBB boards. Unfortunately, it does not seem to work with the skin that this board uses, but I am in the process of modifying it to work here. I will keep people posted as to its progress.