Should Posts on Debatewise be moderated?
This site is wonderful for intellectuals to share their opinions in a calm, peaceful environment. But let's face it, there is a lot of sabotage on the website as well. If the Admins were to look over the posts beforehand they could significantly reduce, if not altogether abolish the hatred that can sometimes make it's way onto the site.
difficulty of current moderation system
Given the way things are at the moment there would be considerable advantages in pre-moderation as it can be very difficult to work out what has been posted apart from the obvious new debates. The updated debates shows when a debate has been edited but not what the change is.
This could simply be solved by more moderators and a better post-moderation system... at the moment even the post moderation is patchy!
Reduction in the number of posts
people just visiting the site are less likely to make changes or make comments if their contribution does not appear on the site immediately they will be unlikely to make any more contributions. Too many users already only make one or two comments and no more.
Simplistic quantity over quality arguments rarely indicate the advantage of high volume of contributions. Reduction in the number of posts alone will not actually harm the quality of posts and in fact, in the long term, may result in the deterioration of further contributions as dignified posters may not want to be associated with an poorly moderated debating forum.
Censorship is never a good idea
I posted the "Women are superior to men" motion along with 12 points both in the yes and no. Agreed that a lot of people were offended ,distorted my points, were very rude(I think I received several empty death/rape threats) but in the end there was really no harm done. In the WODC when people get aggressive they are called out by adjudicators. On Debatewise RRT members voice their concerns to Alex, for example there was a person offended by a certain debate on breastfeeding because of the word breast and that was settled within the RRT via discussion.
I once wrote a sports' debate on a certain Football captain committing adultery with his friend's ex-girlfriend, who was a sort of football groupie,, his wife was okay with it but he lost his captaincy. A wonderfully moralistic person made a few points on how he would never indulge in such behavior and I got cheeky and wrote something to effect of it's not as though he would ever get the chance. The next day DC asked me to remove my comment and I did. So there is a level of moderation but the policy is no drastic measures against freedom of speech such as removing points without an explanation. I think this is a good policy.
The main problem here is that we have spent a year working on a new idebate.org (still not up!) which has meant we have not been devoting resources to finding more people for the RRT and unfortunately we have through normal attrition (students finding jobs) lost several of our most active members. This in turn means there is both less editing other's points to moderate content and less reporting to HQ.
The idea behind debatewise is that opinion should be crowdsourced - this means that the users should moderate the website themselves. Points can be edited by anyone meaning that if you encounter something that has been put offensively then moderate the content. Yes this also means that points can be sabotaged however admins can roll a point back if it is pointed out to them - otherwise you can always add more reasonable content back in. If a comment if offensive flag it. Debatewise admins cannot check all the debates all the time users need to be more involved in moderating points and reporting anything offensive.
What do you think?