Official Soylent discourse moderation update


The community has seen a marked increase in new users over the past few months, and we are constantly delighted at the conversations that occur on the Soylent discourse. In light of this increase in community activity, we would like to re-emphasize our community guidelines, as well as introduce some clarifications & changes to how moderation takes place within the Soylent discourse:

This community is a place for congenial and civil discussion centered around Soylent, powdered foods in general, nutrition, science, new innovations in health/science/technology, etc. Topics & discussions that do not fall under these general subjects will be removed.

We work hard to maintain an elevated level of civil discourse in this community. Please take the time to read our content guidelines in full. Here are some important sections:

  • Be respectful of the topics and the people discussing them, even if you disagree with some of what is being said.

  • You may wish to respond to something by disagreeing with it. That’s fine. But, remember to criticize ideas, not people.

  • The conversations we have here set the tone for everyone. Help us influence the future of this community by choosing to engage in discussions that make this forum an interesting place to be — and avoiding those that do not.

  • Always be civil. Nothing sabotages a healthy conversation like rudeness.

Again, these are just a selection – please make sure you’ve read the guidelines in full.

Topics and posts that violate the community content guidelines will be addressed in several ways:

  1. Peer moderation - If another member of the community feels that a post or topic violates any of the above guidelines, they can flag the post. If enough users flag a post, it will be hidden and a private message will be sent to the author, asking them to edit the post to adhere with community guidelines. Once the post has been edited, it will be unhidden.

  2. Community Moderators - There are now several additional community moderators that will be monitoring the forum to ensure that it remains a productive and safe environment. These new moderators (@BoDuke @Tesseract) are also long-time community members who have contributed in constructive and significant ways to the Soylent discourse community over the past year. In the interest of clarity, their original discourse accounts are unchanged – they will be using their moderator accounts as necessary, but will largely continue to participate as regular community members. Maintaining anonymity between their regular and moderator accounts is up to their discretion. They receive no compensation from Rosa Labs.

Also, a huge thank-you to @codinghorror, who in addition to being the co-creator of the Discourse forum software, has been an enormous help in moderating the Soylent discourse over the past 12 months.

Some words on tone:

We encourage individuals of all viewpoints and backgrounds to contribute to the Soylent discourse, and feel strongly that a diverse community is essential for long-term success. These diverse viewpoints will always include negative ones. Dissatisfaction with our current order fulfillment process would be a particularly salient example.

We want to say quite clearly that we see nothing inherently wrong with negative viewpoints, and we would like the discourse to be a space to articulate such opinions – direct customer & community feedback is quite valuable. As long as a post does not violate the community guidelines and is relevant to the specific topic and the discourse at large, there shouldn’t be any reason for the community or community moderators to take action.

Disagreement is a natural part of information exchange, and ideally has positive effects. If both sides are open-minded, disagreement is productive and allows knowledge to grow or spread. If either side persists only in repeating their own point, cycling the same arguments, and refusing to budge, then nobody is benefiting, and it is likely that the topic will be closed by a moderator.

Thanks to @BoDuke @Tesseract for volunteering their time and energy to facilitate the growth and maturity of the Soylent discourse community. We look forward to your questions and comments.

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Hi everyone. Glad to be here, and to have the chance to help out.

I have an extra tab open on Discourse often, so whenever I’m at my computer I should be able to address things pretty quickly. When a post gets flagged, it adds a number to a little icon at the top of my navbar, until the issue is resolved - my job is to keep that number near or at 0 :smiley:
Aside from flags, if a topic is petering out and in need of closing (or worse, spiraling drastically out of control), you can also tag me directly @Tesseract to take notice.

I feel I should re-emphasize, as @JulioMiles has said, I don’t represent Rosa Labs themselves, so I have neither the authority nor information to address anything outside of this forum (in particular, I don’t know/can’t do shipping/refund/update/etc things).

A last note- to pre-empt any concerns, because I know it’s out there: my job is not to “clean up” anti-Soylent posts. I think Julio’s announcement is accurate in stating that objective balance is the goal of moderation. If something is (appropriately) flagged for violating the guidelines I’ll generally send an “edit request” PM so that the author has a second chance to make their point. Unless the Prince of Nigeria wants you guys to help him with some bank accounts. Those I will probably just delete :slight_smile:


I couldn’t have said it better myself @Tesseract

We are here because we want Soylent to succeed. We appreciate civil differences of opinion.

Our main goal is to help with this site so that @JulioMiles can focus more on getting the product in your hands. We want to rely heavily on the peer moderation. But also want to jump in if necessary.

If you flag a topic and select notify moderators, we will get notified directly as well.

Lastly, we are volunteers, so please try to remember that we are here to help.


Welcome to your new roles guys/gals, you have an interesting road ahead. :slight_smile:


I, for one, welcome our new overlords. :wink:


I am very, very happy to see community moderators on the scene!

As much as I enjoy helping out here (and I know the Soylent team has been insanely busy), I am basically an outsider – it is always better to have people ‘from your neighborhood’ on duty as moderators.


Noticed this was only pinned “within category” before – fixed!

This topic is now pinned globally. It will appear at the top of its category and all topic lists until it is unpinned by staff for everyone, or by individual users for themselves.


I think you should concentrate your efforts on responding to emails that are sent to you instead of ignoring them with an automated reply, and getting people’s orders correct, THEN worry about discourse moderation.


I think that’s at least part of the point here. @BoDuke and I don’t work for Rosa Labs - we aren’t involved with email responses, and we can’t speak for the company. Our job is focused here, on the forum.

And the more we can help here, the more we can free up people who do work directly at Rosa to deal with direct company business (such as Julio, and those emails).


The original post was very clear the community moderators are not employees of Rosa Labs and do not receive compensation.