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📌 The tools that Reddit mods use

The week in content moderation - edition #54

Hello from Sierra Leone 👋🏽 This is the first EiM since I swapped the UK for West Africa (although tbh I did most of this week’s newsletter from Charles de Gaulle airport).

If you’re interested in finding out more about life in Salone, I’m going to be writing about it (and practising my Substack skills) here.

I’ve spent most of this week thinking about The Bristol Post’s approach to trolls posting on its Facebook page. I don’t think they were right for a bunch of reasons (see next week’s EiM) but I’d like to hear from folks who disagree. Get in touch if you have a strong view.

Thanks for reading — BW

Tooling up

If you use Reddit or follow news about the it closely, you might already have come across ‘abrownn’.

He moderates 28 subreddits including nine of over 500k members including r/worldnews (23m), r/gadgets (16m) and r/technology (8m) and was also one of the mods that spoke to Engadget in 2018 about the abuse mods suffer at the hands of users on the platform.

In this interesting long read from Fast Company, 'abrownn' explains the tools he uses to moderate content on some of the world’s biggest online communities. The tools and the approach are new to me (although tbf I'm not a regular Reddit user) so I thought I’d share here:

  • Reddit Enhancement Suite, an open source Chrome extension built that for all users that allows easy comment searching and account switching.
  • Moderator Toolbox for Reddit, a Reddit-approved Chrome extension that analyses user history (for easy banning) and personal notes.
  • Homemade scripts - no mention of what they do or if anyone else uses them.

While Reddit has had its moderation challenges, I’m reminded again of two almost universal truths:

  1. Good tools are crucial to making mods’ lives easier (see PinQueue) .
  2. Platforms rely on remarkable people who see it as their duty to keep online communities clean (such as fellow Redditor Agony Aunt 'Anne').

Skills that pay the bills

Not much more to say about this than I agree with Lauren. The Bristol Post should perhaps take note...

Not forgetting...

YouTube released its latest community report and, in the last quarter of 2019, it removed 5.9m videos and over 2m channels, 90% for spam.

YouTube rarely reinstates removed videos — even when creators appeal - The Verge

YouTube’s new community guidelines report is sharing data on how many video appeals actually led to videos getting reinstated. Less than a quarter of videos d

Twitter’s community-driven labels to tackle misinformation on the platform will likely be affected by usual moderation issues, notes Business Insider.

Twitter's neon warning labels to fight misinformation will likely run into familiar content moderation obstacles

Twitter is experimenting with bright orange and red warning labels as it searches for the best route to fight misinformation on its platform.

Some good background on Audiovisual Media Services Directive (AVMSD), the piece of European legislation which deals with audio visual content (both TV and on-demand) and which will have impact on how sites and services moderate content.

Regulating content moderation in Europe beyond the AVMSD | Media@LSE

The EU Audiovisual Media Services Directive (AVMSD) was adopted in November 2018, aiming to better reflect the digital age and create a more level playing

A new paper looks at the challenges of algorithmic moderation systems and concludes that most are ‘opaque, unaccountable and poorly understood'.

Everything in Moderation is a weekly newsletter about content moderation and the policies, products, platforms and people shaping its future.