In my job working on comment moderation at The Times
, bozoing was one of the few ways to deal with users who intentionally tried to disrupt the conversion without necessarily violating the community guidelines. I never liked using it. But I still used it.
Bozoing a comment meant only the user that posted it could see it. It also ensured that it couldn’t get any replies or likes and thus starved the user of the feedback they desperately sought. Used judiciously, my team and I decided it was a good way to preserve the conversation for others.
It’s not a new idea — the approach is very similar to Reddit’s feature (which this week was tested on The_Donald subreddit
) and not a million miles away from the spam filters that has kept our inboxes (mostly) clear for decades – but it’s simplicity is perhaps its best feature. The Washington Post
were very positive:
Shifting toward transparency, with a set of criteria to determine when a tweet is a matter of public interest and how to weigh the implications of removal vs. labelling, is a sensible solution.
As was Wired editor-in-chief Nicholas Thompson: