Community interaction on Daily Kos

Many people on Daily Kos have been around for a long time, and thus, there is lore that accumulates about community norms. For the most part, people are welcoming and helpful, especially if you are friendly.

Here are some articles that may help bring you up to speed on the community:

Rules of the Road & Community Guidelines

One rule to rule them all

The core of the Daily Kos behavior guide is simple: don't be a dick. While we go into some depth in the linked article about sanctionable behavior, it's not an all-encompassing list. There are always types of behavior that while not explicitly listed in the article, rise to the level of "dickishness", and as such are actionable.

Wise Teachings of MetaJesus

For those of you a bit new to the site, MetaJesus is the patron saint of Daily Kos. MetaJesus looks over the site, and performs small miracles here and there to generally keep things running -- things like reading really, really crappy diaries, intervening in flame wars, and returning the human souls of posters who have ventured too far, too long, on the dark side, and who have only barely returned, crumpled and gasping, slimy with FreeRepublic ectoplasm, to our midst.

You may be saying those are unimpressive miracles, except for that whole soul part, and you are admittedly right. MetaJesus is not Jesus: his powers are, well, more subtle. Mostly, MetaJesus cries. A lot. Well, he doesn't so much cry, usually, as just sigh heavily, or lower his head into his hands, or go off into the other room where he has a liquor cabinet and a very comfortable brown leather chair, or, when the moneychangers are in the Daily Kos temple, throw his Logitech cordless mouse across the room onto the couch, where it bounces off the cushions and lands on the floor next to the sleeping cat -- MetaJesus is a cat person, just as an aside.

And perhaps the most important advice:

  1. MetaJesus says that if twenty different people say your diary (or comment) sucks, then thou art not secretly an unrecognized and put-upon genius. Your diary (or comment) just sucks. Thou shalt get over it. Conversely, if one person out of a hundred says your diary sucks, they may simply be a jackass. Thou shalt get over that too.

Author Wee Mama wrote up this nice diary about the many ways that you participate moderate the community with your positive input:

The Lighter Side of Community Moderation

Geneticists like to say you get what you select for. The parallel saying in psychology is that you get what you reward. DK4 has given us many tools to reward what is good or gets us closer to where we want to go. Here they are, in no particular order...

Finally, this is a good article from a completely outside source that may be of help:

How To Be Nice on the Internet

Perhaps the two most valuable suggestions are "think about your goal" and "If you make a mistake, apologize."

Think about your goal.

What are you trying to do with this comment? Start a conversation? Learn something? Solve a problem? Or are you trying to hurt someone or punish them because you feel hurt? Or maybe you are you trying to make yourself look good and make someone else look stupid? Think about it. If your goal is to actually further engage, does your comment have the potential to do that? If your goal is to actually hurt someone’s feelings, then hey, you’re a grown-up. Maybe delete and take a walk around the block.