Any time you have users posting about other users there’s a risk of abuse. It’s not an easy problem to solve but shoutouts.dev has some strict rules and practices in place that I hope will prevent it, and it all starts with accountability.
Only users whose provider (GitHub for now) account is older than 2 years are allowed to post shoutouts.
Owners of projects can flag shoutouts. One flagged shoutout will prevent the user from posting more shoutouts to any of the owner’s other projects.
If more than three owners flag shoutouts from the same user, they will be banned from ever posting more shoutouts.
These rules may vary over time depending on their success, but it is my hope that will make shoutouts.dev “good vibes only” site.
Rule 1 is kind of discriminatory and will not be effective. You just go through Github and you will see a lot of devs with more then 2 years posting inappropriate comments or that barely have participated in anything.
So, instead I would queue the shoutouts to be approved by the owner of the repo or by someone on that organization. Maybe they can also be approved by moderators in the shoutouts community.
Maybe you could also make only possible to shoutout if the Github users as more then x likes in comments he has posted in the past and doesn’t have any or more then x of .
I don’t agree it’s discriminatory or ineffective for two reasons.
Firstly, GitHub users that have recently created accounts have very little to lose if they engage in trolling, as they could simply create a new account and move on. On the other hand, a 2 year minimum longevity means the user is likely invested some time in their account and built up some reputation, raising the accountability factor.
Secondly, one of the aims of the project is to add as little maintenance as possible on the owner side. By requiring some accountability we reduce the possiblity of getting spammy shoutouts and having the owners weed them out themselves, exposing them to potentially harmful messages and adding to their workload which is the opposite of what we’re trying to do.
Moderation is a possibility but it relies on community, which we don’t have at the moment, and is more complex. That being said, there is some support for a voting system on shoutouts, but thought it best to see if the accountability option works.
I agree that new accounts should not be allowed, and thats why I proposed:
In my opinion the limit of 2 years is not good way to go, because if I was an active developer with less then 1 year or 2 in Github I would be feeling annoyed and discriminated with this two years requirement.
So, instead I will measure the number of repos, stars, followers/following, and comments posted and the relation between positive likes and negative likes received to establish a threshold from where devs would be allowed to shoutout no matter their age.
On second thought, and re-reading what I posted, it does feel like 2 years is excessive to prevent trolling from throw away accounts. I think I will reduce it and see how it goes given we have a severe lack of people actually posting shoutouts.