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  Can we stop new/anonymous users during the private beta?

+ 0 like - 1 dislike

The private beta should be for people who you know personally, or at least can identify by real name, so that you don't get trolls. There's a fellow called "physicsnewbie" who I don't recognise, and wasn't at theoretical physics, and whose name doesn't seem to indicate much experience. But, still, physicsnewbie had a good logo idea.

I am not comfortable with anonymous users at this stage, we should know who everyone is in real life, because it is easy to sabotage new things using trolls.

Who are you, physics newbie? Are you a student? A physicist?

asked Feb 23, 2014 in Feature Request by Ron Maimon (7,720 points) [ no revision ]
recategorized Mar 8, 2014 by dimension10

Do you know who Dilaton and Dimension10 are personally?

-1: I completely disagree. Physicsnwebie probably also signed up for the private beta. 

Yes, Dilaton I know from email exchanges (personal enough), and Dimension 10 from various interactions. I just don't know who you are, that's all, it's weirding me out.

2 Answers

+ 3 like - 0 dislike

I'm someone who emailed the administrator of this site with a request to participate in its testing. A verifiable email account should do just fine.

I agree that anonymous posting shouldn't be allowed here, which I accidently did with one of the questions here, but I can't change it to my username, as I'm able to do for answers.

answered Feb 23, 2014 by physicsnewbie (-20 points) [ no revision ]

Ok, upvoted, you have a nice logo idea, but it would help if you could reveal your "real life" identity, just so we know who's who. There are people who have long grudges at the stackoverflow site, and no hostility, they are welcome, but I for one would like to know who's who at this particular stage, because then it helps understand who supports what for what reason.

+ 2 like - 0 dislike
The beta site is hidden by its URL, which has been given only to those people who explicitely subscribed per valid email. Polarkernel has ensured that the search engines of Google are kept out at this stage. In case of really bad trolls, saboteurs, and spammers creeping in here, Q2A offers efficient enough methods to deal with them ... The issue of anonymous participation should proably be brought up at some point too, but I would wait until we have a larger community before deciding such things. We may also treat this issue seperately concerning the Main and Refereeing category for example.
answered Feb 23, 2014 by Dilaton (6,240 points) [ no revision ]

when it's a large community, you have to be really, really careful about labelling people "trolls" or "saboteurs", because even with the best intentions, you get Soviet style nightmares. It's very easy for people to gang up on somebody who is criticizing something and say "troll!" "saboteur!", even if the criticism is cogent (I had it happen to me many times). The easiest way now is to know everybody, because there are only a few dozen or so people around. When the site is live, the easiest way is to require real identities, and verify it with a quick skype session or something, so that you know you don't have sock-puppets. For trolls, this is difficult, you need a moderation system which can deal with this, but perhaps simply requiring staying on-topic, non-redundant, and original, is sufficient to discourage any attempt at trolling.

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