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I wouldn’t call it strict at all. He’s actually way more liberal about stuff than most over-bearing Reddit mods who think it’s their job to be editors of their own private newspaper rather than helping only when there’s no other option.

This is why dang is so good at what he does as it draws a difficult balance.




I know it's anecdotal and people live their own experience, but in my own experience dang is the only moderator I can recall having a conversation with where it WAS a conversation and not some authoritarian declaration. He even seems to go out of his way in comments to explain his thoughts and I have seen him change his mind and admit things as well. I wasn't aware he was Canadian but it funnily feeds the positive stereotype of politeness in our northern neighbors. Most people in positions of power online seem to be little Joffrey types with take it or leave it attitudes regardless of how you speak to them.

Also add me to the people who didn't know it was "Dan G" for the longest time and loved "dang" as a name.


I'm of the opinion that it is best to err on the side of strictness. Once you make a reasonable exception, you open a precedent, and some people are very good at digging up and pointing out precedent.


There should be some fuzziness about decisions otherwise you encourage gaming to see what can just get past censors. It sounds unreasonable but it works well in practice.


> and some people are very good at digging up and pointing out precedent.

As one of the people who loves being that guy in another community: They're not only very good at digging up and pointing out precedents, they likely have systematic archives of everything that remotely relates to the decisions they wish to see made.


The guidelines of the site I think are the ultimate precedent. If Dang dont get ya the rest of the community likely will. HN is somewhat self-moderating after all. I have seen users point out to abuses of the community guidelines.

I feel like sometimes users with negative Karma like crazy become even more obvious to mods. Sidenote: I still yearn to see what HN looks like to mods and what not. Not to cheat the system but to understand the system more (I love knowing these sorts of hidden details).


Out of curiosity, what brings you to be 'that guy' in the other community?


The mods should keep an archive of decisions that go the other way. This would keep a balance.


To do that, the mods need to keep an archive of all decisions, because the bias they'll be accused of is unknown until the accusation is posted. That archive probably looks something like https://hn.algolia.com/?query=by:dang%20please&sort=byDate&t...


I don't think you realize what you're advocating for. There's protection from the hate that lives on the internet, and then there's grooming a narrative. What you're asking for is the latter, not the former.


no, you just don't fall into the cracks that dang dislikes. I've seen him go after people who aren't causing problems because he doesn't like what they're saying. I've seen it multiple times actually.

His go to is to call it conspiracy regardless of what's actually being said.


Where did I do this?

When I get something wrong, I'm happy to admit it and correct it. At the same time, people make all sorts of claims about horrid things we supposedly did, and most of those leave out important information.

Either way, if you're going to make claims like this, you should supply links so readers can make up their own minds.


In the other thread: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=19984428

you state that asking for sources is, and I quote: "a rather unsubstantive contribution".

You are now telling me I should be citing a source.

If I were being snarky I would ask if you would mind raising your signal/noise ratio as you did with the other poster.

I mean, which is it? Is asking to source the claim unsubstantive or not? Is it only unsubstantive if there's a claim against you personally?

As for allowing others to make up their mind, that would be what the poster in the other thread was presumably trying to do, and you shut him down. And that's really the point.


A comment consisting of nothing but "got any sources for that?" is certainly "rather unsubstantive". But that is not why I replied to it. Had that been the only thing wrong with the comment, I wouldn't have. It was the following:

> Edit: lol, downvotes for asking for sources? "Hacker" "news" is just full of gems!

... that caused me to reply as a moderator, because that breaks more than one of the site guidelines, as well as being lame. This is routine moderation.

Both the original commenter and now you have given a distorted version of what happened there, as anyone who looks at the original thread can easily see. If that's what you have to resort to in order to come up with examples of moderator abuse on HN, we must be doing pretty well. Better than I'd have expected, in fact, given that we've posted 38,000 of these and no one bats a hundred.


also, since I forgot to address it in my other response.

asking for sources is not unsubstantive, not in the least. It's one of the most substantive things you can do, both as someone providing information, and as someone trying to evaluate the information being provided.

The fact that you've come to feel that asking for sources is less important than not making others feel uncomfortable goes a long way towards why I don't view HN as a place for decent discourse.


I didn't say any of those things. I'm afraid we're going in circles now.


That doesn't pass the reasonable person test.


and now you've chosen to be unfair. I don't have access to the original comment, something you know, yet you accuse me of distorting facts. You've also lumped me in with the other poster as if we're the same person or the same group.

The only thing we have in common is not really liking your work as a moderator, and the way it's stifled discourse on HN. You have to go to other places for that, I mostly use HN as a news source.


By original comment I mean https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=19984428, the one you linked to upthread. I just clicked on it like everyone else.


A comment like "got any sources for that?" without adding additional context is low effort and inching towards trolling. Another difference is while the parent post of that person's comment it would be nice to include sources, it is about a general topic people can attempt to look for public sources themselves. Your comment you are accusing a forum user (dang) of something and there is no reasonable way to look for sources backing up your opinion/claim.


no, asking for sources is legitimate, it's a crazy world you live in where being asked to give a source for information is low value and/or low effort.




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