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Old 03-29-2011, 06:28 PM   #10
Holdstrong's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Keene, NY
Posts: 409
Moderation is a fantastic tool to "shape" an online community.

If you only want people to discuss certain topics, or - more to the point - if you only want people to discuss them in certain ways, then moderation is one of the best ways to do that.

The downside is that you can end up creating an echo chamber. A place where mostly like minded individuals share mostly like minded thoughts in a way they all find agreeable. This is great for those individuals - and this is why moderated communities almost always ultimately tend to get along and appreciate and will even point to moderation as the reason for their success. Because those who feel otherwise are gone. They have been moderated out, so to speak.

But a side affect of this is that it also has the potential to limit the robustness of a dialogue, and indeed reduce the capacity of a community to share information and ideas.

It is a fiiiiiiiine line to try to toe.

A line that may not be as important to a website like this, but for a community news outlet discussing very important issues... it is a more essential balance to try and find.
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