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Changes to MyFDL

8:00 am in Uncategorized by Jane Hamsher

When we first opened MyFDL several years ago there was no existing software that allowed us to do what we wanted to do — open up a blog where the entire FDL community could post. So at that time we had to do a lot of adaptation to the WordPress system we run on in order to make it work.

This meant that each time we needed to upgrade WordPress, we had to re-write our own software too, which to be perfectly honest was problematic from the start and has caused a lot of our technical problems over the years.

We find ourselves in a place where we can’t do the needed upgrades to the WordPress system that the entire site runs on and reprogram MyFDL at the same time due to cost and the sheer enormity of the task. So starting tonight at 10 pm ET we are going to be taking MyFDL in its current state offline and replacing it with a more limited community blog that operates on standard WordPress, at least until we can get the rest of the site upgraded.

What does that mean for MyFDL bloggers? For regular MyFDL bloggers, not much. The Over Easy gang and many of the people you see here regularly will have logins and posting privileges on the MyFDL blog, which will function on standard WordPress like any of the other FDL verticals (News, The Dissenter, Just Say Now, etc.).

But MyFDL now has some 33,000 people with diarist permissions, and WordPress in its native form was simply was not built to handle that kind of volume. So much to our sadness we won’t be able to import all of those 33,000 authors to the new blog. We hope that everyone who may find themselves unable to post diaries for the time being will continue to bring their insights and their research to the community in the OverEasy or Late Night threads, because it is your continued participation that makes the community so rich.

We thank everyone for their forbearance while we try to get our system upgraded, and we hope that in the not-too-distant future we’ll be able to solve our programming challenges and be able to create a space that will be both more functional and more suited to the needs of the community.

If you have questions please leave them in the comments section, we’ll be around today and tomorrow answering them.

FDL Comment Moderation 2.0

9:54 am in Uncategorized by Jane Hamsher

Starting today we’re implementing a new moderation system across all the FDL sites, including MyFDL.

Many people have expressed the desire for members of the community play a stronger role in developing actions, content and community standards for FDL. The membership program is one of the ways we’re trying to be responsive to those wishes, and our new content moderation system is another.

If you look down to the bottom of each post, you’ll see a link that says “flag this post as inappropriate”:

You’ll see one at the bottom of each comment, too:

 

While we’ll still be screening comments for spam and inappropriate language, we’ll also be looking at the number of times a comment or a post gets flagged by members of the community, and factoring that into whether or not someone is appropriate content. It doesn’t mean that a group of people can gang up on one diarist or commenter and get them booted, but it does mean that if something upsets a lot of people, we’ll know that and can take it into account when making those decisions.

But that system depends on your participation. So if you see something you think has crossed the line, let us know. Disagreeing with someone’s respectfully expressed political perspective is not sufficient reason to flag a comment as inappropriate. Eliminationist rhetoric, threats, hate speech and free iPhone spam are.

There’s a vast gray area between the two polarities, however, and as a community we make decisions about what is appropriate and what is not every day. If those standards were static the job would be easy, but because of the fluid nature of language and the evolving ways people communicate online, they change all the time.
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Welcome to the New MyFDL

11:48 am in Uncategorized by Jane Hamsher

Welcome to the new MyFDL.  Our amazing tech crew has worked tirelessly for months to build social networking features into the site, and there is a lot of great new stuff:

1. Across the top of the page you’ll see your toolbar, where you can create an account or login   Once you’re logged in, you’ll be able to control your MyFDL features from the toolbar.

2.  Every registered user has their own page, and clicking on anyone’s name in the comments will take you to their page. You can now add a picture of yourself, make friends within the community and have your own blog.

3.  You can join a group for your Congressional district.  We hope that people will be able to use these groups to organize locally in in the future.

4. Comments on MyFDL diaries are now nested, something a lot of people have been asking for.  We’ll see how it works on MyFDL as a way to test it for the main site.

5. The back stage area for writing diaries is MUCH spiffier.  Try it out.

My favorite part so far are the photos in the profiles. It was GREAT to click on msmolly’s name in the comments today and see her beautiful smiling face! It’s wonderful to be able to see who you’re talking to.

So what do you think?  Let us know in the comments.  The programmers are still working out the kinks so make a note of it here if you find something that’s not working. And thanks everyone for their patience.

Special thanks to Michael Whitney, Brian Sonenstein, Egregious, Rick, Rayne and all our programmers who have been working so hard on this.  It’s pretty amazing.