A week ago some sub posted a whole bunch for a couple days, with a lot of posts from 2 people about anarcho-capitalism. I am not a fan of this ideology, I see it as neo-conservatives role-playing as anarchists to trick people, so I left comments criticizing the comics. (Those "Hoppean snake" black and yellow comics if you remember them)
No problem so far. They had their say, and I had mine. No harm, no foul. Both opinions are out there. This is what saidit was built for. Discussing ideas from different perspectives.
However, then the person who posted many of those comics, started deleting my criticisms! They said "I am mod here, I can do what I want." They deleted 6 comments of mine from different threads. I was being careful to respect the pyramid of debate, but they wanted an echo chamber.
This type of censorship is not what we created saidit for. This is exactly how reddit was ruined, with little mod fiefdoms taking over subreddit by subreddit, where they censor any opinion that runs counter to the little echo-chamber they wish to establish. Then once every sub is a pure echo-chamber, the front page becomes polarized as well, and the site as a whole is ruined. This is the current state of reddit.
Our stated goal for saidit is to avoid becoming voat and to also avoid becoming reddit.
So it is clear we need some sort of ruleset for the moderators to abide by, with clear consequences if they fail to moderate according to site rules. People leaving comments high on the pyramid of debate should not be censored in a sub, even if they disagree.
What should that rule be? We have thought about this a lot. Saidit currently has zero site-wide rules that apply only to mods, so we want to choose the new rule very carefully.
/u/d3rr has given what I think is the best phrasing so far:
"No removal of good faith and on-topic posts/comments."
This lets mods remove things that are off-topic for the sub, and lets them remove things that are low on the pyramid of debate, but if something is on-topic and high on the pyramid of debate, the mod MUST allow that on their sub on saidit. This prevents censorship. Repeated cases of mod censorship (which everyone can see because all mod action logs are public, seen at the 'mod log' link next to the mod user list on a sub) will be responded to by saidit admins, resulting in removal of that moderator from their moderator position.
Basically, if a mod shows they're willing to repeatedly censor opposing opinions that are high on the pyramid of debate, then they shouldn't be a mod on saidit.
This adds accountability to the mods, which will prevent us from becoming like reddit with little mod fiefdoms, while still allowing mods to do their moderator duties to keep their sub on topic, or to remove things that are dragging discussion down the pyramid of debate.
Now that I've laid out the problem as we see it and our proposed solution, I would like to open this question up to community discussion because this is an important rule and we want to make sure we get it right.
Is "No removal of good faith and on-topic posts/comments." the best rule to solve this problem?