By far the most popular topic is karma. When it was just called "Points" nobody really cared, but now that I changed the name to "Karma" everyone has input on it. Must have a few MUDers out there. Since I intend to start using karma in a few other places, I added a field to display it on your user preferences page. I might add it to the comments display, but I'm holding on that for now since it will just clutter things up.
Default Comment Scores
For many moons now, users with high or low karma were given either a +1 (k:25) or -1 (k:-10) on their comments. Yesterday I added an additional -1 (k:-20) that I have since removed. Many people argued reasonably against it, so its gone.
In addition, I added a much requested feature to allow posters to optionally pass on the +1 bonus when they post. Many people who have earned the bonus point occasionally wanted to say something that they didn't feel deserved the bonus. I guess thats fair.
Anonymous Posting w/o Logging Out
Due to popular demand, I've added an option to allow logged in users to post anonymously. If you use this option, you are every bit as anonymous as you would be if you had logged out, except if you have a +1 bonus, your comment will still get it.
At some point I may eliminate the old AC posting in favor of this one, if only to eliminate a certain amount of knee-jerk posting, but I'm not convinced on this one. I really believe that people should be able to post anonymously, and this system while it still allows that, it would require a login. Its just a hoop- the comment is every bit as anonymous, but I suspect I'll take some flame for making people jump through the hoop. Then again, the flamers are probably a large part of the problem ;) Anyway, I'm not sold on the idea, so I'll probably leave it as is.
So who moderates the moderators? Every day comments are mailed to me with a note saying 'this comment was unfairly moderated'. Sometimes they're right. Sometimes they're wrong. But regardless, it seems like the community should be able to regulate this itself. So I've implemented MetaModeration.
I'm debugging it now, and it should be online within the next few days, but I want to post the concept for evaluation:
Basically, anyone who is eligible to moderate is eligible to MetaModerate [M2]. (Registered users with non-negative karma who have had accounts for "awhile" (the definition of which is likely to change but right now is probably a month or so)).
An M2 gets 10 comments, and the moderation done to them. They are then asked to decide if the moderation was fair or unfair. The opinion of the M2 affects the original moderators karma. In otherwords, if you moderate good, you get better karma, you moderate bad, you lose the ability to moderate in the future. As a side bonus, users will get some karma (on a sliding scale so it won't be much) for being an M2.
Its just a thin layer of accountability, but if everyone plays fair, it'll work. (Just please don't start asking for M3 or M4 moderation or I'll start crying).
Some other stuff
So I labored on my labor day (and Andover even has it officially listed as a holiday!) Thanks for all the feedback (good and bad!) in the last few days, please keep it up. I'm sorry we can't implement all the suggestions, but of course some of them aren't feasible, and some are just silly. But as a whole, I think we're getting better. (Or at least my TODO list is getting shorter ;)