Auto Moderation Bots; Good or Bad?

Discussion in 'Community Organization' started by cheat_master30, Aug 16, 2016.

  1. cheat_master30

    cheat_master30 Moderator

    Don't know what those are?

    Well basically, Twitter and Reddit have this weird thing going on where users and communities set up their own bots to block people or 'moderate' communities automatically. So for example, one bot might archive all linked content for future reference, another might auto tag the topic and another might say, remove something that's too controversial or what not. That can be pretty helpful, depending on what kind of community you're running.

    Or in the case of Twitter, it can be a tool to auto respond to tweets, follow users, find trending topics, etc.

    However, they also seem to be abused as a sort of 'block anyone who's opinion I might remotely disagree with at some point' tool as well. For example, the infamous blockbots on Twitter which auto scan someone's followers and block all of them for whatever reason. Or the weird auto ban stuff on Reddit where posting in certain sections will get you automatically banned from certain other sections the second you try and access them, even if you didn't post anything there.

    Personally, I'm mixed on them. On the one hand, the first type seem like a perfectly okay thing to have. Maybe even something that should probably be implemented into the software. Like say, a way to auto prefix topics or auto archive or auto get necessary information.

    On the other hand, I feel like banning people from a community based on their username/account being used for something somewhere else is extremely poor moderation. Carries a sort of 'pre crime' element to it, the sort of thing that was so controversial in Minority Report. I think Reddit and the like should probably crack down on stuff like this.

    And blockbots/lists seem like more of a filter bubble enforcer than anything else. Not to mention a questionable idea in general, especially when a company is using them. Might not be a good move to kill off customer support for say, anyone who supports Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton..

    But what do you think?
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