When I report a post, who gets notified?

Whenever I perform my duty as a patriotic citizen of this great society and report a bad post, who gets notified? I assume it gets sent to the moderators of that particular forum. Am I correct? Or does it get broadcast to all the mods?

The reason I ask is that I just (well, an hour ago) reported a spam post in ATMB, but TubaDiva, the sole ATMB mod, is not currently online. Of course, as we all know, Tuba never ever ever sleeps, but she can’t be online all the time. Otherwise she’d have no time to replenish her chocolate supplies, and how on earth do you expect her to function without chocolate?

In a situation like this, should I also cruise over to the mod list and email a mod who is online? This extra step probably isn’t necessary if the problem is something boring like a tyop or a misplaced thread, but I’d imagine spam is the kind of thing you guys would want to clean up rather quickly–particularly if the spammer is on a rampage or if it’s devious spam like this one.

This time round it’s pretty academic since none of the mods are currently online (party!!!), but a good citizen is always prepared, knowledge is the most powerful weapon in the fight against spam, yadda yadda yadda.

The admins/mods listed at the bottom of each forum get emails about reported posts in that forum, yes. However, each of us on the moderating staff are able to remove spam posts in any forum we happen to be browsing in. For instance, I frequently come across spam posts while simply reading the boards for pleasure. I move the posts out of view and ban the spammer as a matter of course. Since I am a night owl, I tend to get spammers that would normally get more exposure. Other mods and admins will also remove spam and take care of other problems while casually reading the board. We want the spam to become invisible as soon as possible.

I am particularly glad that many posters will post to a spam thread simply to say that they’ve reported it. One report is all that’s necessary, unless the board has a nervous breakdown again. I hope that the spammers who keep statistics notice that their spam gets very little notice on this board.

Please DO report spam and other problems on the message board. Sometimes we’ll just check our email real quick, not intending to do anything on the boards, but if we know there’s a problem, we’ll hop over and look at it. We really appreciate the help.

When we get an email, we get a link to the reported post, and the thread that it’s in. We get the message that the reporter types in. We do NOT get a copy of the reported post, so if you want us to be aware of the nature of the problem, you have to put that in your report.

Lynn the Stealth Admin
For the Straight Dope

Thanks for the info, but the question remains unanswered.

Do you or do you not want us to report to another mod if the forum specific one is not currently online, to snag an especially virulent spam, say?

Can’t hurt. We’re not worried about turf, especially if it’s somethingl like obvious spam. Basically, we’ve never had any kind of problem with something being reported “too much,” and we by far prefer that to something not getting reported at all.

Hardly. It’s not like spam hangs around for days on end. Most of it is deleted within minutes, but occasionally one will hang around for a few hors before a mod can get to it.

Even if one is missed, it’s not going to help the spammer’s Google ranking one bit. The robots.txt file for this board excludes it from being crawled. You will not find one (non-plagiarized) result for any thread on this board via Google.

As is the case you quoted. In any case, I still contend the vast majority of spam disappears within a relatively short time span. Hell, I’ve had spam get deleted while I was reporting it. Examples such as the one provided are vanishingly rare; in fact, I challenge you to find another.

Here’s another (probably lazy) question about the “report bad post” button: how bad is bad? Do the moderators only want to hear about egregious rule violations, or is it okay to use the button to report zombie threads or threads in the wrong forum?

This is true.

FTR, just for your information you understand, I prefer dark to milk chocolate.

(And single malt. Not that you asked, but let’s be thorough.)

Unbought (but possibly rented, the rest is just haggling over the fee.)

We (or, at least, I) encourage you to use the reporting function to alert us to threads that need moving, zombie threads or anything else that requires our attention. You could e-mail us, I suppose (and folks do), but the “report bad post” button sends the report to all of the mods in a forum in a few clicks. Saves you the trouble of having to look up our addresses.

So yes, you may use it to report zombie threads and threads in the wrong forum. Just, use that box to tell them what you think is wrong, so that they can evaluate the situation.

I’ve reported more than one post for “griping about thread-shitting” and let the moderators decide whether or not the griping was egregious enough for a warning–as well as whether the thread-shitting was egregious enough for a warning.

Remember, the mods can’t and don’t read every post in every thread in every forum. And even if they did, you may have found a bad post or zombie thread sooner than they would have. So hit the triangle, explain what you think is wrong, and the worst that will happen is either it will get ignored, or you will get a message in your e-mail saying “Thanks for the concern, but I’ve decided that didn’t violate board rules” with maybe some more verbiage, if you are lucky.

Okay, I’ll use it to junior-mod to my heart’s content. GQ mods, incoming!

I find I report twice as many as get acted on. So far the mods have not asked me to stop. :wink:


We could always use more information, so yes, hit the button when you think it’s appropriate. We’ll tell you if it’s too much.

Likewise more chocolate.

Of course, the times when spams are most likely to be missed for a while are also precisely those times when it doesn’t matter as much. Mods are people, too (well, technically), so the times when few mods are on tend to be the times when few people are on. And if nobody sees a spam in the hour or two before it’s nuked from orbit, then it doesn’t really accomplish anything.

Will you tell us if there’s too much chocolate? I know, it’s about as likely as some of the hypotheticals in GD, but if you ever need some assistance in your chocolate consumption duties, I’d be happy to volunteer my little Jr. Mod self.

(And ditto what What Exit? said about frequency of reports to action taken, and I haven’t been asked to chill out. On the contrary, there are a couple of extra sweet mods who take the time to send a quick “thanks” email every so often.)

But no chocolate? :wink:

IS there such a thing as too much chocolate?? :eek: :eek: :eek:
See’s Candies, btw, as long as they don’t need to be shipped. :slight_smile:

Although the system implies “bad,” it’s really the easiest way to bring something to the attention of the mods. So, whatever it is, if you think it’s worth our attention, hit REPORT BAD POST. Egregious rules violations, obviously, but also requests for title changes, fixes in tags, zombie threads (although some forums care less than others), etc. All fine to REPORT.

BTW, the report comes to the mods for the forum via email. So, just because a mod is not actively on the boards doesn’t mean they won’t see it. And just because they are on the boards doesn’t mean they will see it. If you’ve hit REPORT and there’s no response within an hour or so, you could send an email to another mod (not one for that forum.) Sending an email to a mod of the forum is wasted effort; they’ll see the REPORT email whenever they read email. That clearer?