This morning, moderators were accused of being complicit in shaping narrative and suppressing counter commentary by pre-selecting posts and assigning them to private messages.
Firstly, I’m not sure how we would pre-select anything - but it is true that at times we do move posts to a separate private thread when the conversation moves off topic and requires intervention. We do this simply to try to keep the original topic on track - and since such interventions can at times get quite combative, it serves as a fire break between the mod action, and the rest of the general site.
This is done with the best of intentions for the forum and certainly without any hidden agenda. However, I recognise that simply saying the sky is blue does not make it so, so we have created a new opt-in category where we will posthumously make available any moderator interventions as a closed topic for review by the wider community.
Groups page -> Moderator Actions
I should stress that since the interventions occur in a private thread (where sometimes people say things they wouldn’t normally), we would need the consent of all those involved before making it public. Given peoples desire for transparency, I hope this won’t prove to be a stumbling block and will help to alleviate any concerns anyone may have with the impartiality of the moderation team.
To this end, I have asked each of the people involved in the private thread that is alluded to in the above topic, if they would consent to me making the thread public within this new opt-in group.