Community Moderation: A Success Story

Sun Forums is one of Sun's longest running community sites. It's been around for ~8 years. It's grown by leaps and bounds and continues to be one of our most active sites. There are currently more than 4 million messages posted by nearly 1 million contributors. The site see ~44 million page views annually (or 3.7 million/month) -- amazing traffic & volumes of rich community-driven content.

While the majority of contributions are positive, as with any community site, there are going to be occasional disruptions in the form of derailed conversations, abusive posts, etc. We struggled a bit with implementing a protocol that would scale to effectively manage this issue.

As a collaborative effort between the team that manages the Sun Forums, the Sun Legal team and the Sun Forums Community, a sensible Community Moderation Program was defined, then implemented on January 26th, 2007. Since then, via the same collaborative effort, the program has been fine-tuned.

In addition to our community nominated volunteer moderators generously sharing useful information with their peers and helping to set a positive tone throughout the Sun Forums, they've also leveraged the site's community moderators features to take the following actions in response to content that violate site terms or are simply posted in the wrong forum:

  • Blocked 793 accounts
  • Blocked 2,391 messages
  • Quarantined 2,768 threads
  • Moved 941 threads to better align with various forums topics

Many thanks to the community members who helped define the Moderators Program and special thanks to the eight volunteer moderators (dcminter, kajbj, PhHein, yawmark, ejp, Darryl.Burke, sabre150, and cotton.m (alumni)) for giving so generously of your time and for making such an awesome difference to the site & the community in general!

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Sr. Community Engineering Program Manager/Acting Director for Sun's external social networking sites (blogs, forums, wikis, etc.). Skrocki's personal blog, LinkedIn.

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