What IS this place?

Continuing the conversation from “that other board” I think we should decide on some basic stuff for this site, to make sure that the community is defined and protected, and that we’re all on the same page.

I for one want this to be a collective, but even that has to have some structure. And there are a lot of things to be decided, as @messana (who isn’t here yet) laid out, and to which I’ve added a few elements ;

This may need a category of its own as all of these things probably deserve their own thread, but for now I figure we should just start hashing it out. Thoughts?


Bookmarking & subscribing.

I’ll volunteer to moderate if needed. School’s out soon, and it’s looking more and more like I’m unemployed/gig econ/private practice/retraining as of January, so time is becoming more free for me. But not without clear expectations and boundaries.


[quote]Keeping the lights on

  1. What are the costs of running the Discourse VM, associated bandwidth, CDNs, etc. and who pays for them?
  2. Whose hosting services do we use for protection and privacy? Orenwolf spoke highly of PriorityColo from a security/privacy POV. I’m feeling very paranoid these days and am v. sensitive to this issue.
  3. Technical staff - although we have a lot of talent in this group, who should have admin rights? How do potential conflicts get resolved?
  4. Governance - who gets to make the big decisions down the road, and how?[/quote]
  5. A good gaming VM costs approximately 40 USD at a minimum. Per month.
  6. A dedicated colo space will put costs around 99 USD a month at a minimum, on top of initial hardware purchase. A home PC ain’t going to cut it. We might luck out and find some used servers on the cheap, but beware rootkits on the BIOS.
  7. If @orenwolf is willing to come and be house dad, it would be helpful to give him privs. I’m ambivalent towards @codinghorror who seems to be well-intentioned but mostly oblivious.
  8. Maybe a quorum of regulars should be required to make changes to our constitution?

[quote]Moderation and Trust

  1. Who gets the lucky job of being our local luck dragon(s)? I’m acutely aware of Orenwolf’s advice that these things are time consuming and labor intensive to moderate.
  2. How are disputes resolved? How do we handle dustups without the final say of a neutral third party?
  3. Presuming we manage to create a space where those very private, very personal details are revealed, what are the ground rules for protecting that information - both from an infosec POV as well as a PII/privacy POV?
  4. Community guidelines; what are the basic rules for participation? Is this place different than BBS?
  5. Maybe a triumverate of moderators with the power to ban instantly if needed but who default to putting bans to a volunteer jury to decide on would be best.
  6. Thunderdome.
  7. Encrypted backups. We can’t fully secure the host against attackers, so if we rebuild the damn instance, we should build it with LUKS full disc encryption (if we go dedicated hardware)
  8. This should be collectively written as a constitution. For now, act as if you are in the old Lounge. Don’t be an asshat, don’t engage in direct personal attacks against each other, but otherwise go nuts.


  1. Who do we invite from the BBS to join? When and why? I’m not sure I would have ever made regular by popular vote and the fact that it happened just from being engaged with the community just felt right.
  2. Is it worth the potential friction of creating something that can be perceived as a clique of ‘the cool kids’?

1)Anybody who’s on the mailing list and part of the old @regulars group (recreated by orenwolf). Maybe excluding possible bad-faith trolls.
2) Yes. We should haver lighter requirements to make regular here, but having a way of sorting out the good from errant trolls will be useful.


You’ll probably see a few of us BBS refugees wandering in uninvited, like I just did. Some of us were alerted that it exists.


Sneaky bastard. I like you already.


I’ll expand later on how I have everything set up and what my expected costs are in the near future.

As far as who’s allowed to join, I’m keeping it open right now so that anyone can come over. I expect that will be mostly BB users, but I’m certainly not opposed to new blood. If they were a problem user at BB, and prove to be a problem user here, we will ask them to behave. If they don’t behave, we will ask them to leave. I think that’s a fair start, at least. My intent is to involve the users as much as possible in shaping the rules around here.


Have you announced the existence of HMS in any public threads? I have only mentioned it in PMs where Regulars are. At least I think so.

I’m curious how others feel about letting everyone in - while we’re in stealth mode, it seems fine to me, but I think some people (@ChickieD?) were hoping this to be a replacement for the Lounge, which would mean being a little more restrictive, or at least not sharing it as much.

I should also mention that if I hadn’t been made a Regular literally days before the Great Debadging, I wouldn’t be here either, even though I’ve been on BB-BBS since it started. So there are probably some other people who were not yet Regulars who could be an asset here as well.


I’m not sure how that would be taken.

I was a fairly new recruit as well, which is why I’ve tried to be cautious about my actions, since I haven’t earned the same level of trust as many others.


Right. Which is why I feel re-implementing the lounge would be a good idea - maybe not so heavy on the requirements this time. Extending the warm welcoming feel of lounge to all topics here is my goal. Protecting the privacy and safety of members is my top priority.


I too, am at least interested in the requirements and responsibilities of being a moderator. I’m currently on a 1099 contract which allows me a very flexible schedule. In its own way, stepping over to something else like this for a while helps keep me on track with the programming gig – sort of like moving the “what do I do next” onto a background process!

This! I’ll agree that I’m interested in helping the community here, but I do want to see those before I step into the firing line.


Re: funding: the metafilter method does seem to work – asking for a relatively small annual fee from members seems to keep the drive-by ratio manageable (which also minimizes mod headaches). While the public radio model of fundraising is annoying, it is functional. The combination of the two should be able to keep a space running.


I’m not sure where would be best to do it, but it might be good to note somewhere that currently all threads are also world-readable. Wouldn’t want anyone to accidentally overshare.


I have arrived. For what it is worth.


This is what my wife does on her mommy-blog. I think she charges $20 per six months with occasional waivers for people who really can’t afford it. It works out pretty well. After costs, she makes about as much as she used to with her occasional articles for Gawker. Sometimes there is a troll who pays the $20 and then gets butt-hurt that they can’t spam/troll/be an asshole and claims they’re going to sue (for $20?!?) when they get whacked and get pointed towards the ToS that says “no refunds.” Some jackwagon tried a chargeback once but I don’t think it worked.


It’s an interesting model. The challenge of course is to make a site sustainable without becoming over-commercialized. BB fell in to that trap and suffered as a result. It’s not something we need to worry about right now because we have some very generous people creating and funding this site, but I think in the long term I’d like to see this not come from any one person’s pocket.

It kinda raises the question though; should this be a corporation? If so, nonprofit, for-profit, or social enterprise?


Deeper question: How much are we trying to accomplish here? I know you were talking about a blog, and I’m a big fan of that, but calling it “Happy Mutants Space” would seem to preclude that since “Happy Mutants” is kind of an unofficial trademark of BoingBoing.

If it’s just a forum for BB fans to replace the lounges then clearly it will just be users chipping in for operating expenses.


I can co-mod. I’m on vacay next week but will try to check in.

THANK YOU for making this. This is my happy place right now. @LockeCJ


You bring up a good point:

The owl already owns that trademark. Technically, he could come after us even now.


I’m absolutely open to new names. This domain cost me $4.


One person suggested Joyful Inhumans (take that, Marvel!). Maybe metahumans?