Ars Technica: Anonymous “Anonymous Cowards” are, for now, not welcome on Slashdot . “On August 9, tech news aggregator Slashdot quietly removed one of its earliest features, which had been available to all visitors since its founding in 1997: the ability to post comments as an ‘Anonymous Coward.’ And while the feature returned within five days, it returned in a largely nerfed format.”
University of California Davis: Internet Communities Can Teach Amateurs to Build Personalized Governments. “The internet has its perils with privacy breaches and fake news, but on the plus side, a whole generation of youth have been teaching themselves skills in leadership and community-building, according to a new University of California, Davis, study.”
Search Engine Roundtable: Google Moving & Closing Support Forums. “We saw it happen with a number of support forums already, including the Google News forums. But now it looks like all Google support forums are moving to the new platform. The interesting part is they are not migrating content from the old to the new platform, instead, they are making the old platform read only and opening up the new platform for new topics.”
Popular Science: How to block toxic comments all over the web. “Some corners of the internet act as bastions of healthy discussion, but out there on the wild web, discourse appears worse than ever before. If you’re tired of feeling your blood boil every time you get to the bottom of an article or open up your social media app of choice, here’s how to clean up your internet conversations.”
BBC: My disabled son’s amazing gaming life in the World of Warcraft. “Robert and Trude mourned what they thought had been a lonely and isolated life for their disabled son. But when Mats died, they discovered that people all over Europe lit candles in his memory.” Before you read this make sure you have some tissues handy.
Nieman Lab: “So many times we forget to listen”: How Spaceship Media moderated a Facebook group of 400 political women without it going off the rails. “When I spoke with Spaceship Media’s cofounders a year ago, they were about to embark on creating arguably the most ambitious news-centric Facebook group in existence: A goal of 5,000 women with diverse views in one group, talking about politics without everything self-imploding.” Forum moderation is an incredibly tough and thankless job, but when it’s done well, it’s amazing.
Nature: How Facebook and Twitter could be the next disruptive force in clinical trials. “Amber Sapp was browsing the Internet late one night in August when she happened to find out that her 12-year-old son’s clinical trial had failed…. The thought of wasting Garrett’s limited time with a failed trial was hard enough. The news was all the more disturbing because it didn’t come from the trial organizers, but through a Facebook post from another parent.”