Freedom of speech

There will be discussion boards. That means there is the potential of trolling and other abuses.

Those conflicts rarely start as such. They start with someone asking a question or talking about something that is important to them. That is followed by an increasingly hostile exchange of misunderstandings with no common ground in sight. We can start a whole new system that will go in that direction and do nothing to avoid it, or we can take actions right from the beginning.

Instead of setting up moderation, and then dealing with a mountain of issues, we will set up discussion groups with as close to total freedom of speech as possible. An impossible ideal, we know.

Everyone that is interested in the same topic can see the discussion going on. That means everyone that “tunes in” into the discussion group with the same key words (hashtags) will see your post. Now imagine that you decide to reply to the post. Everyone can see it going on for as long as everyone likes it.

But then you see a discussion that you don’t like. You think it is a waste of time or it is going in a bad direction. We will have a button where you can “filter out” that discussion, and it will not be visible for you anymore. Everyone else can still see it, but you won’t be bothered with that topic. This way, if two people start a conversation and that turns into a brawl, they can continue brawling for as long as they want, but that brawl will be taking place somewhere else, and not on your screen.

We like the strategy of filtering things out. You don’t like a post? Block it. You don’t like someone? Block that person, for any reason or even no reason. That will bear no impact on that person’s profile and everyone else can still see them. That person is just out of your vision. You don’t like a specific hashtag? You can block that as well.

You can say anything you want. But nobody is forced to listen to you. If they don’t like it, they filter it out.

We feel this is a much more simple and self-regulating way to deal with most problems on a discussion board.

However, there will be some cases in which moderation and even possibly management intervention will be required, but those will be mostly in the areas of attacks and harassment in personal messages, improper behaviors, and other similar problems. When someone posts something in clear conflict with our values, any user can call the attention of ambassadors, and they will take it from there, warning the user once if the violation exists, banning the user when he/she persists. There will be no second warning, no "three strikes and you are out". Willful violation of our core values means one warning and then banning.