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That's false and nasty. You've made up so many groundless insinuations against us over so many years that at some point I'm just going to give up and ban you; I don't think it's reasonable to expect patience with false accusations to be infinite.

In the meantime, here are three comments that explain how moderators had nothing to do with this.




I don't think it's false and nasty. I was thinking the same thing ... quite objectively. There were at least two discussions that I thought were very reasonable, and they got flagged into oblivion very quickly. So I don't know why the YC link gets to be the exception. It feels wrong.

Maybe it is due to the users, but if that is so, it feels wrong enough to give me a pretty big loss of faith in the dynamics of the community.

Re-reading my comment I realize that the context was obviously missing, so here's some context.

The issue isn't that you or other users had that perception; that's natural, which is why I've posted half a dozen explanations of what actually happened, i.e. moderators didn't touch the post (other than in one routine way I described) and its prominence on the front page was because user upvotes dramatically outweighed flags. It was purely a community response.

The reason I used the word 'nasty' is because this user has a long history of insinuating that we're lying (("it's the algorithm", "it's the user", blabla)), when they have more reason than any other HN user to know we don't do that. I've spent hours personally, patiently explaining this to him over at least a dozen occasions where he has made stuff like this up (most often, accusing us of moderating HN to be shills for Microsoft, which is silly). Good faith doesn't act this way.

It occurs to me, maybe this is another instance of the left engaging in silencing tactics and maybe that is a weakness in the flagging algorithm.

I can't vote "don't flag this". So if there are approximately two sides to a discussion, and one side wants to flag it to silence the discussion, then the discussion is going to get flagged no matter what.

So the side that wants to silence just selectively silences the opinions they don't agree with, and they win.

Interesting you say that Jonathan. As someone who you would identify as part of the left, I noticed the pro-diversity posts were always flagged. I assumed it was by the right or whatever group you identify with...or maybe people on HN want to avoid the shouting matches that always come with these topics.

I've personally flagged far more articles on this topic than I usually do. However I am not "on the left". I consider my politics to be slightly right of centre. I have expressed no public view on the content of the Damore memo. But there's been so much sound and fury that only the strongest signal is now welcome in my feed. I did not flag this YC posting; it is, by contrast, very low noise.

I thought you can repudiate a flagging, isn't that the "vouch" control? I'm not familiar with exactly when it is or isn't offered.

Purely as an observation -

Ironically, but not surprisingly, you're down voted for sharing that possibility.

Upvotes are considered "don't flag this". See https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=15023498

The silencing happens because there is a huge left/right discrepancy on this site and because silencing your opposition became acceptable, due to victimhood culture.

One thing I would be very curios to know is the age distribution of people advocating silencing and no platforming.

I suspect that younger people support this due to the helicopter parent style they were more likely to have grew with, where the parent suppresses anything discomforting for the child instead of letting the child deal with it on it's own. So when that child grows it's normal for him to demand 'the state' or 'the corporation' to do the same thing, because only his comfort and views matter.

If you look at the full range of such 'discrepancies' people report perceiving on this site, it's unmistakeable that they are in the eye of the beholder. Each side says HN is dominated by the opposite site. It's a cognitive bias: the comments you dislike stand out more and seem more prominent than the ones you like, leading to the impression that the community is against you. Both sides feel this way (see https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=15027667, in the same thread!) and the irony is that the impression gets stronger, not weaker, the closer the community is to evenly divided. Another irony is that we can point this out over and over but it makes no difference.

You don't typically comment, so I'm unsure if I should consider this as some sort of a (pre?) warning.

I'm a leftist. But what I see right now on the left deeply concerns me and makes me reconsider, stuff like black people advocating black only areas or events, which is ironic, because in the 60 they were fighting exactly against this, or leftists justifying and advocating violence against the extreme right, using the all time favorite excuse that "bad people deserve to be beaten".

FWIW I also got the impression that certain kinds of articles quickly disappear from the front page, and you can see on them more comments than upvotes, which is in general unusual and which suggests heavy downvoting. So to me it doesn't appear that the community is balanced. Which is not to say that this is a bad thing, many times some views are better than others.

I didn't intend the comment as a warning. Note that the word 'please' did not appear :)

No, it's really just that this misperception is so universal that I can't help but answer it even though I know it will do no good. Maybe it's a Beckett play.

[cough] Well, some of us rightists aren't very impressed by what we see lately on the right, either...

I've wondered about the whole flagging algorithm. I've never tried flagging anything; I just move on.

However, flagging does seem to serve a purpose while at the same time it could be abused. Could a throttle for flagging be introduced to slow down abusive flaggers? What I mean is maybe the ability to flag postings is only possible if you haven't flagged something in say 7 days.

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