Instructables content - moderation and peer review

Following a discussion in this forum I thought is might be a good idea to create a new thread.

Adrian Monk
"That's one reason I'm a little apprehensive about the future of Instructables-you don't want a police state, but if it gets humongous you start to lose control unless you moderate well. It's quite selfish, but that's why part of me wants Instructables to stay (relatively) small, and not become a phenomenon."

"That's the thing, we aren't heavily moderated - there are no people who have a specific moderating responsibility."

Some time ago, people were talking towards things like peer-review (I can't remember who). Allowing anyone to post anything does have some drawbacks.

As a suggestion - new posts would submit to a "review" stage, where administrators and their delegates would have the opportunity to click "publish" or "reject".

"Publish" would move the new post to it's normal published state, "Reject" would force a comment to be added to that effect, leaving it in the "review" stage.

It would mean changing the system, but a group of people would be filtering new posts.

It would preempt having to flag things and post comments asking for withdrawal or fixing afterwards.

With a group of people having the option to publish, no one person would be able to hold a new post back, and the group would be able to see "reject" comments and add to them. Users posting would also be able to see comments against their submitted posts.

By "the group" I mean people who are flagging and commenting already.

Safety catch: after X-days with no action, posts publish automatically.

Forum for general ideas, do with it what you will...



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There should be dedicated moderators who can go around flagging items but their flags have a higher priority OR they they can temporarily ban items pending future review. This would not work on it's own but it would be good with the other measures proposed.
frollard8 years ago
I'm in on this late: How about a buffer page? You hit publish your ible: Based on what robot finds, it could do a few checks. For example, spelling check, grammar check, image 'sharpness' check, word count, etc. "STOP! We really think you should give it a once over for spelling, grammar, and photo comments. Read it through and see if you could follow the steps with no knowledge of what you're doing. Once you're totally sure, hit publish again" Another thing, I'd like to see the reactivity of the voting more representative of a true average, without such a strong weighting toward 2.5. Voter apathy is huge, and thus we have a TONNE of unrated or 2.5 rated ibles. Encouraging more people to vote and flag is important as well. Adding extra 'advanced' voting categories would be cool. Categories like instruction quality, picture quality, difficulty, overall. Moving the 'rate' box (or a duplicate of the existing rate box) to just above the comment box would be a blatant reminder for users to rate the ible. A reward for voting with something as simple as a post-count-esque title in your profile for how many ibles you've rated, and your average rating (to show if you're just up or down thumbing ibles for no reason.
lemonie (author)  frollard8 years ago
I seem to have missed this comment.
There's already a Robot filter for missing images and empty steps, adding in a spell check might be a bit erratic (lists of parts, tools, code, proper English spelling etc.)

The site default rating (as illustrated by my data here) is actually 3.0

NachoMahma8 years ago
. I think something needs to be done, but I'm not sure what needs to be done. There do seem to be a lot of iBles that aren't quite up to snuff.
. I think Kiteman is on the right track - it should be reactive (vs proactive). The resources required for Robot to quickly review and approve all iBles and posts is just too much.
. I'd like to see something like a Reverse Feature Team. If a RFT member flags an iBle/post (or maybe have a threshold where 2-3 members have to flag), it gets kicked to a holding area for review by Robot.
I agree, this is a feature that we keep suggesting, but still doesn't seem to have come into fruition. All they would need to do, is pick up on us from the inner sanctum, which actually includes most the people on this thread.
> All they would need to do... . Well, it's not quite that simple to implement. Code has to be written and/or modified, then debugged. I think something like it will eventually be necessary, but it won't happen overnight. . And it seems to me that they need to be much more careful in selecting users that will have the capability of making an iBle/post disappear than those that just flag an item as Featured.
I have definitely noticed a decline in the average quality in new instructables.

Things I'm noticing:
  • bad spelling / grammar
  • "stolen" pictures
  • duplicates, duplicates, duplicates
Other than that, things are just like they've always been.

My suggestion is that these things are added to the list of things you can flag an instructable or comment for. If an admin thinks that they are a problem, and the instructable in it's current state is not a positive addition to the community, the instructable is unpublished and the author is given the chance to fix it up.

I strongly believe that people should be able to post instructables about whatever they like, knex weapons included.
lemonie (author)  threecheersfornick8 years ago
There are some things that pop up, that really ask the question "why did you bother?" Even for the sake of having one it hardly seems worth the effort - testing the system?

Bad English is extreme laziness, when even things like browsers will spell-check things.

Unoriginal pictures tend to get used with verbatim reproductions from other sites (e.g. Wikihow) or otherwise 'empty' posts, so they're symptomatic of a low standard.

I think there's a lot of flagged stuff that hasn't been addressed?

lemonie (author) 8 years ago
Checking back on The-Worlds-worst-Instructables only one of the top 6 seems to have gone

How to blow up a glass snapple with your hand doesnt have the lowest rating anymore.
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