Editing of posts is disabled

Dormant threads from the high school sections are preserved here.
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Matt Weiner
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Editing of posts is disabled

Post by Matt Weiner »

As promised when editing was turned on, it has been disabled on the first instance of someone editing their inflammatory, factually innacurate post full of personal attacks in order to make a person replying to that post look bad. If you accidentally post something that you wish to get rid of, and it can't be corrected with a follow-up post, you will need to contact the moderator of that forum or a board administrator to have your post edited. You can thank forums user "gtn" for this.

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Post by Matthew D »

Crap there goes my spelling edits..
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Post by Rothlover »

Is there a way for it to be enabled for field updates and such, like for select users who are keeping track of a field, and such stuff? Or is everyone basically SOL?
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Post by First Chairman »

And can't the moderator just delete that specific discussion?

One thing that overcomes the "edit": Quote the post that you are replying to.
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Post by yangsta »

yeah, kind of makes it hard to track that tentative calendar that i've editted 31 times so far :p

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Post by jbarnes112358 »

Why can't the edit feature be disabled for specific users?

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Post by AKKOLADE »

jbarnes112358 wrote:Why can't the edit feature be disabled for specific users?
PHP isn't that kind.

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Post by STPickrell »

Is there a way to log edit changes, and have a moderator revert changes back in cases such as this? Or, possibly, set up a dummy email account to receive copies of ALL posts?

We've had editing enabled for what, two years now, and this seems to be the first instance of someone abusing their power to edit.

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Post by First Chairman »

As I noted it's the first time. I think we're trying to hit a fly with a sledgehammer here. What I suggest is procedure if this happens again:

1) Mark the entire thread for deletion, or delete it.
2) Move on.

It's not the end of the world, and compared to other things that are of a much more serious nature (the recent argumentative and vitriolic tone of some discussions), this is not a big deal.
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Post by AKKOLADE »

StPickrell wrote:Is there a way to log edit changes, and have a moderator revert changes back in cases such as this? Or, possibly, set up a dummy email account to receive copies of ALL posts?

We've had editing enabled for what, two years now, and this seems to be the first instance of someone abusing their power to edit.
While my work with PHP is still being conducted due to wvquizbowl.org and as a result I may be incorrect, there is no way to do either of those things easily to my knowledge. There may be "add-ons" that allow either edit logs or a daily saving of all posts, but the base code for PHP message boards does not cover these two things. Additionally, the latter suggestion would have to involve constantly scanning the boards for new posts, which would likely cause a significant rise in bandwidth usage for Matt.

Editing may be back in the future, but first I want to see us set up some safeguards for its usage. It's far too easy for the trust system to be abused; we're unknowingly fortunate that it took the year or two for it to be broken. (I think we've had editing for just about a year, but it might be longer)

Between now and whenever editing is allowed once more, if you need something edited, feel free to contact me regarding it. Just e-mail me at [email protected] with the changes you'd like made and I'll do what I can. Be sure to make the subject something relevant, like "hsquizbowl.org post edit" and a link to the thread. Of course, if it's a stupid request along the lines of a gtn move, I reserve the right to not make that edit and mock you.

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Post by First Chairman »

You mean we can't ask you to re-edit gtn's thread with something completely ridiculous and obnoxious to make gtn look bad? :wink:
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Post by AKKOLADE »

E.T. Chuck wrote:You mean we can't ask you to re-edit gtn's thread with something completely ridiculous and obnoxious to make gtn look bad? :wink:
Just the thread title.

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Post by leapfrog314 »

leftsaidfred wrote:There may be "add-ons" that allow either edit logs or a daily saving of all posts, but the base code for PHP message boards does not cover these two things.
Actually, I searched, and there's one called Edit Store that stores all edits for moderators to view. (It says it requires phpBB 2.0.18, though I'm sure it could be adapted to whichever 2.0.x version you're using.) Hurrah for add-ons.
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Post by Stained Diviner »

I think we're trying to hit a fly with a sledgehammer here.
Dr. Chuck is exactly right. This policy change is a clear mistake.

Romero is not one to take advice from me, but all that he would have to do is add a line saying 'EDIT: gtn claimed <whatever>' if he felt embarrassed by the exchange. The moderators could do likewise if they were concerned about his reputation.

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Post by Chris Frankel »

I've always expressed my opinions to Matt privately, but I'll just repost them here. I don't get the purpose of punishing the whole forum, which has been well-behaved for over a year, because one user who has been here less than a week screws up and does some editing for what was more likely the product of being out of touch with message board etiquette than serious maliciousness. My impression is this is a pretext to justify a personal dislike for post editing.

I agree that stealth content removal is obnoxious, but as the posts in this thread have said, the editing feature serves useful purposes, one can get around its misuse by quoting the remarks being replied to, and there are possibly add-on's that could allow the moderators to handle abuse (though we all know how that last upgrade went). Another thing worth mentioning is that the board's prompt post archival feature is a good safeguard against disgruntled posters' trying to remove all their content (it happened a few times on another board I frequent), and is further reason why there isn't a pressing need to disable editing in the name of preventing abuse.
"They sometimes get fooled by the direction a question is going to take, and that's intentional," said Reid. "The players on these teams are so good that 90 percent of the time they could interrupt the question and give the correct answer if the questions didn't take those kinds of turns. That wouldn't be fun to watch, so every now and then as I design these suckers, I say to myself, 'Watch this!' and wait 'til we're on camera. I got a lot of dirty looks this last tournament."

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Post by AKKOLADE »

I think that using the quote function as a defense mechanism isn't necessarily a step in the right direction. You shouldn't have to quote someone in fear of them editing out their original crap post; you should be able to count on it still being there.

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Post by The Goffman Prophecies »

leftsaidfred wrote:I think that using the quote function as a defense mechanism isn't necessarily a step in the right direction. You shouldn't have to quote someone in fear of them editing out their original crap post; you should be able to count on it still being there.
I'd take redundancy over "counting on it" every day. If you're responding to potentially inflammatory remarks, then use your judgement whether or not to quote the OP, and know that you run the risk of the OP editing the post and deleting their content at any time.

I could use any number of equally egregious analogies to go along with ETC's, but I don't think there's any need. It's overkill.

In the meantime, I'd make the suggestion to preview your posts before you hit submit. It probably goes without saying, but I've been knowing for being overly redundant before.

I've snagged a portion of the rules from another forum that I frequent, and I think that perhaps the community as a whole could be able to assist in modifying these to fit HSQB.
B: The following posts will be deleted on sight.
1. Topics or replies with no body.

2. If you post just to spam or or get 'google juice' then you WILL be blocked and the url you are using will be broken. These forums will stay clean of spammers and the useless junk they bring.

3. Posts which are destructive in nature. To put it basically, if you cannot say anything positive or helpful, or provide pointers that can assist the original poster and do so in a constructive manner - then do not post.

4. If your post contains abuse or flames then this will not merely be removed from a post, your whole post will be deleted.

5. If your post directs offense at another forum user, it will be deleted. Do not try to use words cleverly - if there is any doubt, it will be deleted.
Given the nature of this community and it's inflammatory tendencies from time to time, some of these may be overkill as well. I don't know enough about phpBB to even know if some of these things are technologically feasible with the current install, but I suspect that it would be simple to replace "deleted on sight" with "mocked mercilessly, then locked and moved to the Forbidden Zone."

I think the ultimate question lies - how does the board as a whole continue to foster constructive discussion and criticism and maintain some reasonable controls to reach that end?
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Post by sweaver »

I find the change to be an inconvenience rather than a problem. It's an extreme response to a situation, but perhaps the restriction can be removed after the situation calms down.

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Post by thepowerofche »

All I know is another set of forums I belong to (which is powered by vBulletin) allows moderators to completely change the text of someone's post without his or her consent. For instance, if I posted a bunch of ridiculous, inflammatory comments, the mod could simply replace what I said with "ZOMG I MAIK POAST LAWLZ!!!11" and the matter would be finished, with the added touch of public humiliation.

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Post by grapesmoker »

thepowerofche wrote:All I know is another set of forums I belong to (which is powered by vBulletin) allows moderators to completely change the text of someone's post without his or her consent. For instance, if I posted a bunch of ridiculous, inflammatory comments, the mod could simply replace what I said with "ZOMG I MAIK POAST LAWLZ!!!11" and the matter would be finished, with the added touch of public humiliation.
I think that gets done to the spam posted on the forums, so this capability seems to be here too. That may not imply the ability to retrieve deleted text or grant selective editing priviliges, although I think I've seen forums that do have the selective editing.
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Post by conker »

Matt, I know many phpBB forums actually have a time frame after the post during which posts can be edited. In other words, users will be able to make small changes like fixing typos, formatting, etc. right after they've made the post, but if they wanted to erase their post (à la gtn) an hour later, they would be unable to. I noticed that gtn deleted his post almost 3 hours after his original post. A time limit of about 10-15 minutes would prevent users from doing this, while still allowing members to correct embarrassing typos. I'm sure there's a hack for this feature somewhere. Just my 2 cents. :grin:
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Post by AKKOLADE »

While the ideas are appreciated, it should be known that a change with regards to edits is not likely to be made in the immediate future; I know the board's got a lot on it's plate that has a higher priority than the edit feature, as high priority as it is.

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