User with no mod is able to move topics

(Nathan Rijksen) #1

I have a user (currently the only non-admin/mod that has trust level 3) that is able to move topics, he does not have mod or admin nor do any Categories have special security settings for trust level 3.

Why is it that he is able to move topics? Is this a bug or something that is by design, and if the latter - can I configure it somewhere?

(cpradio) #2

TL 3 allows the user to re-categorize topics.

(Nathan Rijksen) #3

Is this configurable? I don’t like the idea of a rank that is auto-awarded giving security settings that can be destructive to a forum.

(Robin Ward) #4

All leaders can edit topics, but you can change the settings required to automatically promote to leader in the site settings. If you set it to something ridiculously high nobody will ever be a leader and won’t be able to do that.

(Nathan Rijksen) #5

Thanks, I’ll have a look at that.

It’d be aweomse if the settings for “what each trust level can do” could be made configurable somewhere. And perhaps it’d be worth communicating somewhere in the UI that trust levels are not just used for category security and titles.

(cpradio) #6

But that’s always been the case. When you get TL 1 you get a lot of new forum functionality along with it. Same with TL 2. TL 3 is just the first to give what may be considered a moderator activity in other platforms to a user.

(Nathan Rijksen) #7

That’s my point though - forum admins make an assumption on how TL’s work based on what they see, there is nothing indicating that at TL 3 users all of a sudden get permission to move topics around so forum admins most likely find out about it by a forum user pointing it out or someone abusing the power.

(Sergey Kislyakov) #8

I agree with Naatan. It’s not good feature. I’m get “Leader” TL automatically and If I’ll be a really bad person - I could just create chaos and move all topics randomly to categories in Naatan’s forum. (Of course I didn’t do it).
I think you must do this feature configurable for forum administrator, because not all admin’s want to allow move topics by user who just help people on forum.

(cpradio) #9

Yes, I get where you are coming from and I don’t doubt that many administrators will not want to allow it. However, from a community standpoint, I also understand Discourse’s approach. A TL 3 should reflect someone you trust, they are constantly on the forum, interacting with the community and showing themselves to be valuable, good members. If they get flagged (5 times, you can configure this down to 1 or 3 or whatever) for poor conduct, they lose their TL 3 status (or can’t obtain it) for 100 days.

Therefore you should be left with people you can trust to re-categorize topics.

(Nathan Rijksen) #10

Sure, I’m just saying that this behaviour should be obvious to forum admins and should not be something that they have to find out when someone inevitably abuses his power.

I think Discourse makes too many assumptions about what an “ideal” community would look like, which on its own is not a huge problem, as long as these assumptions are made obvious and are configurable.

(Mittineague) #11

How many users do you think will get to TL3?
Right now, this forum has only 29 (maybe 1/3 of which are Team Discourse)

I don’t know the number of members this forum has (maybe @codinghorror can provide that info?)
but I’m guessing 29 is an extremely small percentage of the total.

True, you can adjust the criteria, but doing so will also affect other TL3 abilities that you may or may not want to. i.e.

Granted recategorize, rename, followed links and lounge

As a Moderator, I do feel somewhat uncomfortable with this deviation from what has been strictly under the control of appointed Moderators.

BUT IMHO anyone who does make it to TL3 Leader status has proven themselves as Trustworthy. And giving them these abilities should be a help and reduce Moderator workload.

Will any ever make mistakes? Are they human?
But even if they do make a mistake, it can be undone, they can be politely educated about the mistake, and if they prove untrustworthy can be demoted.

(Nathan Rijksen) #12

Given that it is such a small percentage wouldnt it make more sense if upgrading a user to such a trust level would be a manual task, rather than an automated one?

To me “proving yourself” is something you do to a human, until the day AI is invented a computer cannot properly evaluate whether someone is “deserving”.

(Jeff Atwood) #13

By that logic, only “approved” people should be able to edit Wikipedia – and the world would be much poorer for it.

As @Mittineague noted, everything is public in the revision history and the author is noted when the title and category changes no matter who makes the change.

It is more constructive to think of this as “what specific outcomes do we have” versus “there is a theoretical problem here” because, in theory, Wikipedia should not work.

(Nathan Rijksen) #14

Wikipedia attracts a very specific audience and it is known to be FULL of misstakes and trolls, it works out most of the time because it has a HUGE community that is moderating those edits.

If someone using Discourse would be wanting to take that same approach they ought to be able to make that consideration for themselves rather than have the software impose it upon them. Least that’s my take on it.

Anyway that wasn’t even really the point I was trying to make; my point was that it should be obvious to a site admin that roles can give a user these types of powers.

(cpradio) #15

Do you mean the READ ME FIRST: Admin Quick Start Guide that has a section for “New User Sandbox and the Trust System” which contains the following link (of which the next 4 posts describe the various trust levels and what features they permit):

(Nathan Rijksen) #16

As a developer I know its annoying when users dont rtfm but lets be fair; barely anyone does (yourself - the developer - included). This type of information needs to be expressed through UX/UI in addition to being explained in the manual.

Anyway I think I’ve sufficiently expressed my view, I won’t argue it any further. I’m not even arguing this for my own case as by now I know how this particulary feature works and can work around any issues I have with it, I’m simply providing feedback.

(cpradio) #17

Where? Where is it that you would find this information useful so it becomes obvious? I’m fine with you stating it should be, but if you don’t tell us where… what are we to do?

(Nathan Rijksen) #18

I’m fine with suggesting a solution, though I find it a bit obnoxious that you seem to imply that one cannot flag an issue without also providing a solution. Ultimately it’s up to the devs to provide the solution.

That said, I think simply stating what each role gives access to under Admin > Groups (when you have a group selected) would likely address my main concern. Eg.

(Jeff Atwood) #19

As they grow, discussion sites typically need help keeping topics in the correct categories, and people are awful at producing good titles. So these are very specific early pain points I believe all discussion sites have and can engage and empower the community to help with.

(cpradio) #20

The problem is, when others don’t see the issue you need to give us clear indications of where you were, where it made you think “Oh, it’d be awesome if this place told us what the TL’s did”. Many times the developers have seen the system to the extent they know how it all works, so they don’t see a problem (especially UX related problems where “more detail” is helpful).

I personally like your suggested solution.