[openstreetmap/openstreetmap-website] [WIP] Allow reporting of abusive users to moderators or admins (#1576)

Frederik Ramm notifications at github.com
Wed Jul 5 18:11:00 UTC 2017

Great to see this being dug up by someone who cares. 

"Undiscussed import" and "mechanical edit" are the odd ones out because they refer to the geodata itself and not the "meta" bits. These are the (only) parts in the list where the community is - at least theoretically - able to self-police. No special privileges are required to revert an undiscussed import. Such self-policing is made difficult by the lack of a central, easy-to-monitor issue list. It would be a great improvement for community self-policing if, in addition to writing changeset comments, one could also flag a changeset to appear in a central "directory of discussion-worthy stuff" (and if there was some way to reference a multitude of similar changesets from one discussion thread). That, however, is firmly out of scope for this feature, and external sites exist that allow you to monitor changeset discussion entries which goes some way in that direction.

The other items that can be reported on are items where community self-help is not possible. Still I think that transparency would be good so that people can see that something has already been reported (even if that would perhaps negate the usefulness of "handle cases with most flags first" since people might not add flags once they see something has been reported already). Maybe users should even be able to comment on issues instead of raising a new issue on the same subject? Then again, would be be inventing yet another forum?

The data model *does* look overly complicated, however the idea of being able to comment on something sounds sensible, at least unless we want to force moderators/admins to open a ticket in a separate ticket system for every case where some discussion or fact-finding is necessary.

I wonder if this change also introduces a more fine-grained set of permissions than "admin" and "moderator"? What remedies are available to act on reports - who can remove offensive language from the various items under consideration (or can they just be suppressed altogether)? What kind of "paper trail" would be left by such actions - is it conceivable that we e.g. give the right to remove offensive remarks from changeset comments to 100 people speaking different languages without vetting every one of them like we would if we'd give them full moderator rights?

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