Karma, Thresholds, Abuse, etc.

What are thresholds?

Your "threshold" is the minimum score of the comments displayed to you. Comments are scored from -1 to 5, and you can set your threshold to any score within that range. If you set your threshold to 2, only comments rated 2 or above would be displayed. Setting your threshold at -1 will display all comments. 0 is almost all comments. 1 filters out most Anonymous Cowards, and so on. Higher threshold settings reduce the number of comments you see, but (in theory, anyway) increase the quality of the posts you see.

How do I change thresholds?

A widget attached to each story's comments contains two sliders; these allow you to control the score threshold at which comments are displayed. You can drag and drop them and adjust your preferences to find the balance of score and comment text you want.

Someone is posting under a false or misleading identity!

We've tried to make this difficult (for example, the system won't let you create an account named 'CmdrTaco' because one already exists) but that doesn't prevent ninnies from doing what ninnies do. Read cautiously.

Why did that comment disappear?

The Slashdot editors are also readers; we have unlimited mod points, and have no problem using them to highlight good comments, or to moderate down abusive comments of which we become aware. (Hey, get your own sandbox! And get off my lawn!) Abusive comments make it less pleasant for people to read the site. Not to mention, we'd like people to be able to read Slashdot behind ham-handed filtering systems that would block the entire site. If you're posting in good faith, this will probably never affect you. (And if you want to read all the comments, set your threshold to -1.)

How do I report abuse?

Below and to the right of each comment is a small "Anti" symbol; click on this, and (optionally) explain why you consider the comment abusive. (Slashdot discussions are and should be robust; only cry "Abuse!" for comments that are utterly without redeeming value -- spam, racist ranting, etc. For everything else, use the other moderation options.) Reported comments will be reviewed and moderated by the editors, if appropriate.

"You can't post to this page"—Why not?

This probably means you're reading from behind a web proxy that allows connections from any host. This functionality has been abused. Comments can't be posted from this address until the proxy is better secured. Please notify your Proxy Admin.

Do you ban people from Slashdot?

Occasionally we ban IPs from which we see abuse, or disallow accounts from specific actions (such as posting or submitting stories) in response to spam, persistent flamebait, etc. If this happens unfairly to you, please read How do I get an IP Unbanned. These bans are relatively rare, but necessary when specific users or IPs disrupt service for others.

Why is my IP banned?

If your IP is banned, it's probably because one of these is true:

  • Your IP has been used to perform a denial of service attack (or the accidental equivalent) against Slashdot.
  • Your IP was used to post comments that break Slashdot's rendering.
  • You're using a proxy server used by someone who did one of those things.

How do I get an IP unbanned?

Email banned@slashdot.org. Be sure to specify the IP itself, your user ID, and any other pertinent information. (If you're connecting through a proxy server, you might need to have the admin contact us instead.)

What is karma?

Your karma is a reference that primarily represents how your comments have been moderated. Karma is used to determine who moderates and who doesn't. You can improve your karma by posting intelligent, funny, informative or comments generally impressive to your fellow readers.

Karma is structured on the following scale "Terrible, Bad, Neutral, Positive, Good, and Excellent." If a comment you post is moderated up, your karma will rise. Conversely, bad karma usually indicates a user account used to spam or otherwise hurt the discussion.

Factors besides moderation also affect karma. Having a story submission accepted raises your karma. Also, metamoderation can cause your karma to change. This encourages good moderators, and ideally removes moderator access from bad ones. Don't worry too much about it; it's just an integer in a database.

Are there anti-troll filters?

A handful of filters have been put into place to try to make sure that people don't abuse the system. For instance, the same person can't post more than once every 120 seconds. Also, if a single user is moderated down several times in a short span, a temporary ban will be imposed on that user ... a cooling off period, if you will.

If you believe you've been unfairly banned, let us know, so we can fix it.

A comment I posted shows a different score on my user page than in the comments page. Why?

Your user page displays the comment's "Natural" score. That reflects things like moderations up or down, default posting bonus, and so forth. When you see the same comment in a discussion, though, its score reflects bonuses or penalties associated with your own user preferences. (You can choose to tailor the comments you read, for instance, by bumping up comments that others have rated "Insightful," or bumping down anonymous ones.)