Single Status Update
We have been relatively tolerant of politics in status updates, but the degree of political content in status updates has been gradually increasing recently and it has proved hard to moderate effectively.
From now on, we will be enforcing the same strict ban on politics that we do for forum topics. Please don't post anything political, and please report status updates that do seem political for a moderator to take a look at.
For the avoidance of doubt, if (without limitation) it mentions leftists, right wing, republicans, democrats, liberals, constitutional amendments, Trump, Biden, gun control, healthcare, rights, demonstrations or politicians, or passes comment on laws, regulations or COVID response, then it's probably political.
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To add to this, those rules weren't suitable for putting in the CS - "not too contentious" doesn't set a clear line in the sand, for you or for us, so it is hard to evaluate a candidate status update against. This resulted in political statuses usually needing a discussion to agree on whether it crosses the line, which isn't helpful for non-mods.
Would you be open to providing internal guidance for mods, as a way of being more open? Of course kinda hidden so that CS takes precedent over guidance, but those that are interested can find it
I don't think much of the moderator guidelines would be very informative - most of the moderation at the moment is done based on experience, because it's very difficult to write down more specific rules than are in the CS without being unreasonably specific. It's mostly just places where the rules have changed in non-trivial ways that we've written something up (and then that writeup is just the basis that is subsequently iterated on as the rule is enforced).
Yes, we are happy for you to create PMs where you discuss politics privately, as long as you keep things friendly. For the time being, please don't promote the PM to others via your signature or in forum topics. You can post a status update about it (but you can't spam status updates about it - it should be a one-off) to get interested members, but I would caution against doing much promotion because the bigger the group gets, the more likely it is that issues will arise.