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jcs/lobsters#197 has an issue open discussing hiding comments by specific users. There is a current PR open which would replace a user’s comment with “[Comment hidden because you have this user on your blocked list]”.

What are people’s thoughts on this feature being added?

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    I personally don’t think it’s a good idea–it increases echochamberyness. The next logical step is the equivalent of a site-wide killfile or defaults for people to opt-in to. It also would make sense to start tracking, for each user’s profile, how many people have them blocked.

    Other than that, there’s also the script by @pushcx that works pretty well.

    It might be worth considering a default truncation length so that walls of text just get collapsed past some initial word count. That helps with the usability problem without hiding differing viewpoints.

    Everybody wants to claim they frequent a diverse forum but nobody wants to deal with the occasional cranks, windbags, or disagreement ¯\_(ツ)_/¯.

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      The next logical step is the equivalent of a site-wide killfile or defaults for people to opt-in to. It also would make sense to start tracking, for each user’s profile, how many people have them blocked.

      I think those suggestions are several steps too far. The intent of the issue, and the people commenting on it is to hide a handful of people who they find annoying/frustrating, not to hide all opinions that they don’t like or for Lobsters itself to make judgements on who should be shadowbanned.

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      Earlier today I updated the userscript I posted to also block text posts.

      I’m tempted to update it to flag submitted stories as “Already Posted” and downvote comments as “Troll”, as both apply for my use case.

      I still have not received any requests to support multiple sites/usernames. I guess everyone using it just has the one user they block.

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        downvote comments as “Troll”

        You do realize, of course, that this helps erode the utility and signalling value of the troll downvote, right? Least of all because it empowers users to effectively attack other users automatically?

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          I know; it and the next sentence were dry humor. Like “by specific users”.

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            From the comment in the userscript I can but guess at which user @pushcx is referring to :)

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        I’ve had this in the back of my mind for a while now, and only discovered the open issue for it today. This fills a gap between outright banning bad users and everyone seeing everyone else’s comment. There are pros and cons here. In my mind:

        Pro:

        • Users are able to filter/curate their experience of lobsters and not need to read comments from some users
        • I don’t think the current intent is that hiding is private, but even the knowledge that people may hide your comments may be enough for some people to moderate their comments or think more about how they’re engaging with the community.

        Cons:

        • This increases the risk of filter bubbles and people not being challenged by comments that they would otherwise have seen. To argue against this, in the comments on the GitHub post, and in my own experience, people are only looking to hide comments from 1-2 people.
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          Users are able to filter/curate their experience of lobsters and not need to read comments from some users

          One thing to point out is that Lobsters is, by-and-large, self-governing. We seem to function as a dictatorship advised by a democracy. Having each user curate their own special lobsters reduces cohesion and helps prevent productive discussion of community norms, because there is less of a guarantee that two users see the same comments or stories.

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          One of the nice things about this community is that everyone can talk and bad comments are pretty much weeded out by consensus. The use of this feature, IMHO, is better served by administrative ban of truly troublesome users and sucking-it-up of everyone else. ;)

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            https://lobste.rs/s/gftzux/lobste_rs_feature_request_killfile

            I believe there continues to be plenty of support for the ability to blackhole given users.

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              Happy to see it deployed.

              One of the things I really miss from usenet was the killfile. Banning is too harsh, and hiding is a solution that would be extremely useful.