On February 12 2009 ChristianBlog.Com announced a major set of security updates that were planned for the ChristianBlog.Com website. To date we have two (2) of the ten (10) issues we brought forth.
Today we are announcing a third implementation of the ten listed items.
ChristianBlogBetter reporting system that will involve member based calculations to determine when a specific piece of published content should be automatically removed.
Today we are happy to announce that it has now been implemented!
We are going to call this new feature "Community Suspended Content".
It has the goal of allowing our members to directly interface and control the system that determines when content is suspended from the ChristianBlog.Com website.
How It Works:
The idea behind our "Community Suspended Content" feature is to allow people to have a greater and quicker control over what is suspended.
Typically ChristianBlog.Com suspends Content that violates our Global Policies within a matter of 4-6 minutes of the reported content being Reported by our community members. This is a truly amazing time-frame, considering that there are only i three people that monitor Website Reports. Unfortunately, all three of those people all live in the United States, so sometimes there are a few gaps in our ability to monitor the Website Reporting System 24/7.
To counter these 'gaps' in our monitoring system, and to provide our existing three folks who do the monitoring to take a break every-now-and-than, we have decided to put into place a system where Reported Content receives a numeric rating system.
Here is how we are going to work this whole system:
Anytime any Published Content is Reported by a member of the ChristianBlog.Com it will receive either a "1" or "2" points.
Once a specific Published Content item receives a total of five (5) points said Reported Published Content will be Suspended from the website.
All members who have a free account will increase the total points by one (1) point.
All members who have a Premier/Gold account will increase the total points by two (2) points.
So here are some potential situations that would lead to a piece of Published Content being suspended:
Five Members with free accounts Report something.
Two Premier/Gold Members Report something (4 points) and one Free Member reports it too. (1 point)
Three Premier/Gold Members Report something (6 points, but only 5 needed)
Three Free Members (3 points) and one Premier/Gold Member (2 points)
There are some risks that allowing a community to suspend content.
First among them is the fact that people could begin to "target" other members because they have different viewpoints of Biblical values. This is something that only time will tell if we have to take into account and find ways to prevent this.
Another risk that we could face is a "delayed suspension" - where one or two people initially Report something and than it might go days, weeks, or months before somebody else feels it should be reported, does so, and causes it to be suspended. This is something we do not yet have a solution too, but we have a lot of ideas about possible solutions to this problem that we will continue to work out and someday get into place.
How We Define Things:
Published Content: -- We define "Published Content" as anything posted to the ChristianBlog.Com website, such as Blog Entries, Blog Comments, Shoutouts, Gallery Entries, Private Messages, Status Updates, etc.
Terminate: -- This means a specific piece of Published Content is removed from the website for good, never to return.
Suspended: -- This means a specific piece of Published Content is removed from the website for a temporary duration so it can be reviewed by ChristianBlog.Com - which will make the final decision on whether to Terminate the item or allow it to return to the public.
Website Reports: -- This is a feature of the ChristianBlog.Com website that allows our Members to report content that they feel is in violation of our Global Policies.
To summarize this again:
ChristianBlog.Com has now put into place a system where our members have direct control over when a specific piece of Published Content is Suspended and removed from public view/access.
The ranking system is presently set at "5 points" with members with free accounts accounting for one (1) point and those who are Premier/Gold Members will account for two (2) points.
We will continue to find viable solutions to the known problems and any additional issues that come up along the way.
This type of a feature is very often never a good solution within "Community Websites" but we have come to trust our members and feel that when they do submit Website Reports it is done in good nature and not out of spite, or to get back at others, or just because of differences of Biblical viewpoints.
Thanks to some help from [member=melisa]melisa[/member] and [member=shanijane]shanijane[/member] this afternoon, I have now finished the process for Blog Entry reporting.
As stated above, once a Blog Entry has reached a score of 5-points it will be automatically suspended from the website - and reviewed by ChristianBlog.Com
The scoring is simple:
Premier Members who report generate 2 points
Free Members who report generate 1 point
Each member can only report a specific item one time.
You cannot report your own content.
Over the next few days I will be migrating the rest of the website to our new "Scoreboard" reporting system... now that I know it works without any issues.
John B. Abela
This is a big step in handing over initial reviewing of content to the people here at CB...please see it as a huge responsibility and as always before reporting anything, pray and be sure it's not a knee jerk reaction to something you just do not see eye to eye on. May God's hand and direction be a part of this move at CB.
This is much like the pastor and elders going on a mission trip and leaving the 'church police,' in charge of the church.
I for one have already had a blog auto-deleted, by the point system, some of the content was (PG) that is true, but it was also called/voted un-biblical
by at least one premier member, this was a little ruff, being called un-biblical, without any kind of review, and or a chance to clarify.
I have many more blogs that have been appreciated to various degrees, so this is not the end of the world for me, and I am willing to absorb the hit, but I just wanted to say that I have my concerns, and will be praying for this system, and for the good graces of my fellow members.
God's Blessings, disciplevance
Thanks to some help from [member=bethy]bethy[/member] and [member=alight]alight[/member] this morning, I have now finished the process for [u]Blog Comment[/u] reporting.
As stated above, once a [u]Blog Comment[/u] has reached a score of 5-points it will be automatically suspended from the website - and reviewed by ChristianBlog.Com
Up next is the photograph gallery and the Discussions system.
John B. Abela
[quote=greybear]This is a big step in handing over initial reviewing of content to the people here at CB...please see it as a huge responsibility and as always before reporting anything, pray and be sure it's not a knee jerk reaction to something you just do not see eye to eye on. May God's hand and direction be a part of this move at CB.[/quote]
Yes this is very true. One of the major "I hope it never happens" issue with this whole feature is if three or four people get together and begin to target other people. They could, in a rather quick amount of time, cause some serious damage.
Eventually (hopefully later this week) I will have a check-and-balance system in place that will limit the amount of reports that a single member can submit/report within a given amount of time, to try to prevent that from happening.
Other big issue, that GreyBear and I have spent a rather large amount of time talking about over the last three years is something that he mentioned... something I call "Biblical Differences Fighting". That is, when people begin to attack each other over differences of Biblical believes. I think we can all sit here and agree that Christians in-fighting over the last few millennia has been a vain thorn in the side of Christendom. Thus far ChristianBlog.Com has had very little of this, but the day may/will eventually come when it becomes more prevalent here. When/if that day comes this sort of "Reporting Scoreboard" feature could allow those fighting/attacks to be beyond just typing words and lead to those on each side of the argument to being to report each others Published Content in an attempt to get the other sides Published Content removed from the website.
How are we going to handle that?
Well, the only solution I can think of is to begin to not allow individuals who have a pattern of Reporting Content in a manner that appears to be "Biblical Difference Fighting" from being able to Report content. We would simply deny them the ability to access the entire Reporting System of ChristianBlog.Com - not something I would ever want to do, but it is the only viable solution that I can think of to solve such a blatant abuse of given-authority.
[quote=disciplevance]This is much like the pastor and elders going on a mission trip and leaving the 'church police,' in charge of the church. I for one have already had a blog auto-deleted, by the point system, some of the content was (PG) that is true, but it was also called/voted un-biblicalby at least one premier member, this was a little ruff, being called un-biblical, without any kind of review, and or a chance to clarify.[/quote]
LOL, yes, I think that is a very good analogy of the situation Vance.
I think the important thing for all of us to remember is that when a specific piece of Published Content does get reported here at ChristianBlog.Com, those of us "behind the scenes" are aware of the reports, we can review the report, and if necessary take immediate action upon any report.
It is also important to remember that one of the major purposes for this reporting "Scoreboard" is to reduce the amount of man-hours that myself and GreyBear and Everfaithful have to spend being "big brother" here at ChristianBlog.Com - because if I can begin to further depend upon the community to [u]responsibly[/u] report content that is in violation of our [internallink=http://www.christianblog.com/globalpolicies.php]Global Policies[/internallink] it will greatly remove a burden from my existing responsibilities and thus allow me to further my ministry beyond just being "big brother" to a single website.
And most important of all, we all must remember that even if something [u]does[/u] get suspended due to Community Reporting, ChristianBlog.Com will be directly responsible for reviewing the Content that was suspended and make a final decision. Should those of us who do the final review feel there is merit for the removal, we will allow the content to remain suspended and terminate it. If however, we feel it was unjustified we will reactivate the suspended content, reverse the Scoreboard back to zero for the given Content, and thus all is good.
That is the fair and right thing to do.
That explained, I will just be honest and say that (probably) the large majority of the time we are going to side with the Community. Unless there is a clear reason to not do the reversal, we probably won't. And if it is a matter of "Biblical Difference Fighting" it will be reviewed from a neutral perspective by people not involved in the discussion.
That is also the fair and right thing to do.
Overall, I think we are a Community of mature Christians who are not out for vengeance, but a desire to ensure that everybody here at ChristianBlog.Com is surrounded by others who are devoted Christians, who post solid Biblical content, and who are not out to lure others away from the Christian Believes - wolves in sheep's clothing - and that those who are not within the mainstream of Christian core doctrines are going to (or need to) realize that ChristianBlog.Com might not be the best place for them to be spending their time.
John B. Abela
I have now completed the Reporting Scoreboard for [u]Gallery items[/u] and [u]Open Discussions[/u] and [u]Open Discussion Comments[/u].
Daily Bible Comment,
Praise Report Comment,
Prayer Request Comment,
Status Update Comment,
John B. Abela
Ok, I have now completed - and tested - all of the above issues.
So at this time the follow features of ChristianBlog.Com are hooked up to utilize the ChristianBlog.Com Reporting Scoreboard [i](as I have come to call it)[/i]:
Open Discussion Comments,
Daily Bible Comments,
Praise Report Comments,
Prayer Request Comments,
Status Update Comments,
A quick note about this last one - the "account". This is intended to be used when people violate a Global Policy within their (a) selected "usersname", (b) within their "biography", or (c) within their "testimony". Please use it for only one of those three issues.
And a not-so-gentle reminder to everybody:
When/if you report something for "anti-biblical content" and you DO NOT PROVIDE SOLID BIBLICAL SUPPORT within your Report... your Report will be dismissed (!!) We are very serious about this. If you report something for anti-biblical content... you'd best be ready to back it up - and you'd best be ready to back it up when/if ChristianBlog.Com asking you for further explanation on your part. I really cannot make this any less blatant... we will not tollerate people reporting stuff as "anti-biblical" if you do not have the Biblical knowledge and guts to backup your claim that somebody elses content is anti-biblical. If you do report something for anti-biblical content and fail to not provide SOLID BIBLICAL PROOF... you can expect not only the Report to be totally dismissed... but you'd better also be expecting a harsh private message from me. I will not tolerate somebody saying somebody elses stuff is not Biblical when you yourself don't have the guts to say why. Clear enough? Ok, Good.
Moving on from that issue...
I am not 100% confident that I have gotten this Reporting system in-place for everything here at ChristianBlog.Com... so please... if you see something I missed... post a reply and let me know what it is I missed so I can get it added!
(p.s.: I have purged the present reporting database table of ALL existing reports... so, as of right now 4/14/2009 7:17 PM -- we all are starting fresh... everybody and everything is getting a second-chance!)
John B. Abela
I somehow forgot to include the Private Message system within this.
I'll work on that this next week.
Make it so you can report both the initial message and any comments.
John B. Abela