I'm a mod! (sort of)



  • I got access to the Flagged Posts screen when I was running the Mafia game and temporarily got mod rights over the Mafia categories. It was a bit odd to see this kind of global information leaking through to a category-level mod, but hey, a moderator is a moderator, and the only interesting there is a daily flag count and a list of flagged posts (I assume only from categories I have mod rights to).

    Thing is, those privileges have since been revoked - I can't, for example, post in a locked game thread - and the Flagged Posts link still lingers in my sidebar. It still works, too, although the category dropdown only lists "All categories" as an option.



  • Ok, removed you from the Lovers forum.


  • Winner of the 2016 Presidential Election

    @ben_lubar are you banning him from this forum?!

    Filed Under: Not sure since when this forum is about love or lovers, though



  • @ben_lubar said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    Ok, removed you from the Lovers forum.

    Does that mean you're breaking up with me?

    It's odd, since I don't think the forum was actually visible to me...


  • Impossible Mission Players - A

    @Maciejasjmj said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    @ben_lubar said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    Ok, removed you from the Lovers forum.

    Does that mean you're breaking up with me?

    It's odd, since I don't think the forum was actually visible to me...

    Might be one of those "Flag for the permission, but elsewhere is the setting that decides the extent of the permission"?



  • Hey guys, those changes do allow mods to review flags... in the old interface, the one you guys are using now, mods can only see flags from those categories they explicitly manage.

    The new system may be more global in nature... mods can see flags across all categories, but that's still in development, and if you think that is a bad idea, let me know.



  • @julianlam said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    The new system may be more global in nature... mods can see flags across all categories, but that's still in development, and if you think that is a bad idea, let me know.

    We use category moderator status for game masters. We already tell people not to flag posts in the game categories because sometimes the moderators play the games. We have a plugin that denies moderator access to forums they don't have a read permission in.


  • mod

    @ben_lubar Though if we had a way to control permissions on a more granular level we wouldn't need to do that...



  • @julianlam
    If per-category moderator access is allowed by the new system, it absolutely should not grant any global permissions that wouldn't belong to a regular user. Otherwise you're basically writing a giant security hole into your own system, just the same as if you were to write a system that allowed someone to change someone else's password by passing a different User ID# to a get-request to set a password.

    Please don't allow an option that is going to give forum administrators a way to shoot themselves in the foot by granting global permissions when they're trying to assign a category-level function.



  • @julianlam said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    in the old interface, the one you guys are using now

    :wtf: Your product is barely 2 years (ish*) old. How do you already have something you can refer to as the "old" interface-- when you haven't even made the interface fully usable yet?

    :face_palm:

    Also, when I tried to find out exactly how old NodeBB was:

    1. You have no Wikipedia entry
    2. GitHub is a useless pile of shit that doesn't have an "about" page. And if I go to "releases", there is just Previous/Next buttons, but no way to jump to a page, or to the end of the releases to find the date of the first one.
    3. So hey, maybe I'll go directly to NodeBB's site that boasts "Modern Design" and whats the very first thing I see?

    0_1482727738714_upload-44c59ba9-256a-4882-8f16-9e975f1b188e

    .....

    0_1482727759456_upload-bbafeb2a-1154-4669-8a9a-0ce42260aeb7

    Comic Sans, front and center.


  • Impossible Mission Players - A

    @Lorne-Kates said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    Comic Sans, front and center.

    So yeah, that's good for a general decade-accurate dating, right? RIGHT?!



  • @Tsaukpaetra I thin it just means that nodebb is being developed by the "fun" geography teacher





  • @loopback0 So I guess it's a Firefox 22 issue then



  • @hungrier said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    @loopback0 So I guess it's a Firefox 22 issue then

    font-family: 'Shadows Into Light Two',cursive

    how that falls back onto comic sans... :shrug:



  • @Lorne-Kates said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    how that falls back onto comic sans...

    The custom font is WOFF2 which isn't supported on Firefox until 35, so Firefox 22 falls back to cursive for which I guess it uses Comic Sans on Windows.



  • @loopback0 said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    @Lorne-Kates said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    how that falls back onto comic sans...

    The custom font is WOFF2 which isn't supported on Firefox until 35, so Firefox 22 falls back to cursive for which I guess it uses Comic Sans on Windows.

    I temporarily allowed all requests and javascript on the site. I got this:

    0_1482770373553_upload-8e39d797-92b8-43f9-8f46-eafd04c59ea6

    So I needed to allow multiple third-party libraries and websites to run arbitrary code on my computer in order to not see Comic Sans. As a bonus, I also got a bunch of ms-paint quality stick figures being A Community.

    Modern Design. Professional.



  • @Lorne-Kates said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    So I needed to allow multiple third-party libraries and websites to run arbitrary code on my computer

    Modern web design.


  • mod

    @Lorne-Kates said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    cursive

    Cursive's default is Comic Sans on Windows for some reason.



  • @Yamikuronue Evidently, 'cursive' under Windows means 'fonts that make you curse' :slight_smile:



  • @Yamikuronue said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    @Lorne-Kates said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    cursive

    Cursive's default is Comic Sans on Windows for some reason.

    Nothing screams "fix your shit and add @font-face" better than seeing your beautiful website tainted by Comic Sans.



  • I love how this topic was resolved by the first reply and now we're discussing a thing that only exists because @Lorne-Kates intentionally uses broken software.



  • @ben_lubar
    @Lorne-Kates is still active on meta.d? :scream_cat:



  • @ben_lubar said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    I love how this topic was resolved by the first reply and now we're discussing a thing that only exists because @Lorne-Kates intentionally uses broken software.

    It wouldn't be WTDWTF if that didn't happen ;)



  • @izzion said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    Please don't allow an option that is going to give forum administrators a way to shoot themselves in the foot by granting global permissions when they're trying to assign a category-level function.

    Thanks guys, for the feedback. The aim of the flagging interface is to have a centralised place to manage reports of abuse/bad content, etc. When it comes down to limiting access, I'm of the camp that feel that if you trust somebody enough to make them a moderator, they should be privileged enough to see privileged data.

    However I understand that this is not a view shared by some (or dare I say, most) people.

    Discounting the Mafia game limitations -- which I think we can all agree is not a common use case -- how would the flagging interface be limited in such a way so that moderators can still find it useful?

    Let me be clear, when I say that mods have access to the flagging page, that means they can see the flags, but they're not given broad administrative/moderation powers just because of that. For example, they can now see that someone has flagged a post in a category they don't moderate, but they can't do anything about it (delete post, etc)


    Some history on the flagging interface. We initially envisioned it to be a reporting tool with one-click resolution. Flags were tied to posts, and didn't persist. There were a bunch of limitations, and we tried to address them with additional tools (assignees, resolutions, notes, etc), but those are just bolt-on additions and didn't resolve the underlying technical debt.

    I've rewritten the flags interface so that flag themselves are first-class entities, and persist over time (even if the post itself has been deleted and purged). That's why there's an "old" flag interface and "new" one.



  • P.S. is the "ban button" on your own user profile bug still there? I don't recall anyone having reported it :smile:

    Merry Ch Happy Hol May the flying spaghetti monster not eat you all for lunch. :christmas_tree: :spaghetti:



  • @julianlam said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    P.S. is the "ban button" on your own user profile bug still there?

    People could ban themselves? :confused:



  • @RaceProUK said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    @julianlam said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    P.S. is the "ban button" on your own user profile bug still there?

    People could ban themselves? :confused:

    Well, they could in Discourse, couldn't they?



  • @Maciejasjmj said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    @RaceProUK said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    @julianlam said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    P.S. is the "ban button" on your own user profile bug still there?

    People could ban themselves? :confused:

    Well, they could in Discourse, couldn't they?

    I don't recall that being a thing, but then again, it's about as surprising as finding out water is wet.



  • Nah, they couldn't. Server-side code prevented that from happening... the button would show up on client-side though :smile:



  • @julianlam said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    Nah, they couldn't. Server-side code prevented that from happening... the button would show up on client-side though :smile:

    Ah, so an amusing bug rather than an 'oh shit!' bug :slight_smile:



  • @julianlam
    The biggest issue I can see with "all the moderators see the flag" would be that I'm assuming the flagging interface exposes some or all of the original post. So in an environment like a healthcare related forum, where posts in private categories might have PII or other sensitive data, it would be a bad behavior to expose post data from a private category to someone who does not have moderator access to that category.

    My first thought would be, "moderators should only see flags for posts that they have moderator privileges to" (i.e., if I'm a mod of the Meta category but not the Bugs category, I would see flags for posts in the Meta category, but if a flag exists on a post that is in or moved to the Bugs category, that post in the Bugs category would not show up on my flags page).

    If that's not within the realm of technically feasible or user desirable, then I would propose a terminology change that clearly separates a "Global Moderator" role, which does have Flag Access, from a "Category Moderator" role, which has moderation permissions within the specific assigned category but does not have Flag Access. This is somewhat suboptimal, unless somehow the flags can be automatically ACK'd if a Category Moderator happens to perform a moderation action on a post that's flagged -- but even that would be kind of hinky, since how would the flag system even know whether or not the moderation action was an appropriate response to the flag, since the Category Moderator didn't even know the flag existed when he moderated the post. I suppose if the Category Moderator deletes a post, it basically moots the flag and should thus clear it, but any sort of post edit or other moderation would need to leave the flag set until a Global Moderator confirms that it's taken care of?



  • @RaceProUK said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    I don't recall that being a thing

    @end and @sam ring a bell?



  • @Maciejasjmj
    Teeeeeechnically they weren't mere users when they banned themselves. And I'm not sure @sam did ban himself



  • In general, we made the decision (with some outside advice from a client) to persist flag data for historical purposes. I can easily add in a prune option to remove stale flags (or just "old" flags) if desired.

    Only allowing global mods and admins to handle flags doesn't scale well as then the entire burden of handling moderation falls on a very select few. Best case the gmods and admins are overwhelmed. Worst case scenario the admin gets fed up and starts making regular mods global mods to alleviate the pressure.

    The general idea is that flags are raised, at which point they're handled by the mods as they've got a narrower scope of content to moderate (and thus in theory should be able to respond quicker).

    Hiding the flags from category you do not explicitly moderate is technically feasible. :smile: I mean, I'll be the first to admit that my code tends to introduce more technical debt than @baris or @psychobunny's code, but good lord, for a feature I rewrote, I'd hope I didn't introduce so much that that'd be unfeasible right from the get go :laughing:



  • @Maciejasjmj said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    @RaceProUK said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    I don't recall that being a thing

    @end and @sam ring a bell?

    Weren't they admins or something? They certainly had an access level far beyond that of regular users.



  • @RaceProUK said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    Weren't they admins or something?

    IIRC, Jeff was indeed an admin (but not a mod) at the time he renamed himself, banned himself, and stripped himself of his admin privileges.


  • mod

    @julianlam said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    they can now see that someone has flagged a post in a category they don't moderate, but they can't do anything about it

    True, but they can read the post in a forum they might not have access too. That's the big problem: if someone's a local mod on one subforum and has no access to another, they shouldn't be able to see the posts in it, even in the flag interface. A global mod should be able to see everything.

    I was a local mod of the roleplay board on another forum I used to be involved with; I had no access to secret forums, but I was able to move and delete posts in my particular board, because it needed someone close to the subject matter to make decisions on (the equivalent of) flags in that area. It was for a site that involved clans, each with their own subforum; I was a member of one clan, and had no access to other clans' boards.



  • @Lorne-Kates said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    I also got a bunch of ms-paint quality stick figures

    Woah! git checkout the tits on #3!



  • @Bort
    Oh, great, now you've caused a merge conflict. Do you know how expensive the surgery to repair those is gonna be?



  • @izzion
    just do a fresh pull and let it sort that that shit for itself



  • @julianlam said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    The general idea is that flags are raised, at which point they're handled by the mods as they've got a narrower scope of content to moderate (and thus in theory should be able to respond quicker).

    Then you don't want to flood the local moderators with flags either. Especially not with flags they can't handle.

    I also think the PII argument is a good one: You do not want to show people post content they don't have read access for, and you don't want to show people flag information if they don't have read access to that (which is probably part of moderator rights on the underlying category).



  • @Yamikuronue @PleegWat Thanks for your responses, I'm sufficiently convinced to add in the restriction to automatically filter out posts from categories you do not moderate, from the flags interface.



  • @Yamikuronue said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    True, but they can read the post in a forum they might not have access too. That's the big problem: if someone's a local mod on one subforum and has no access to another, they shouldn't be able to see the posts in it, even in the flag interface. A global mod should be able to see everything.

    Who are these lesser mods and who is higher in the rank? I just want to see in a hypothetical battle which side to bet on.



  • @julianlam said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    For example, they can now see that someone has flagged a post in a category they don't moderate

    Can they see posts in categories they don't have read access to? I think that's the main concern here.



  • @julianlam said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    In general, we made the decision (with some outside advice from a client) to persist flag data for historical purposes

    We did that by short-circuiting the "delete flag" function to return an error immediately.



  • @Luhmann said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    @izzion
    just do a fresh pull and let it sort that that shit for itself

    DETATCHED HEAD!


  • mod

    @dse I am the mod supreme, protector of the sanctum in the Sekret PM Club. You probably want to bet on me over Dormamu.



  • @ben_lubar
    That would be a really awkward conversation in the emergency room...

    :hospital: So, what happened here?
    :man: Well, first someone suggested I checkout the tits on this great babe. And then I had to do another pull to resolve some issues caused by the checkout, and now I have a detached head.
    :hospital: ...



  • @julianlam said in I'm a mod! (sort of):

    Hiding the flags from category you do not explicitly moderate is technically feasible

    It seems like an obvious thing to do, really, just like posts in categories you can't read. BUT. Please don't forget to also filter the flag notifications, because you'll just get new issues opened.


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