I love the Spectrum website’s ability to bring together people from such diverse backgrounds and perspectives to have genuinely meaningful dialogue. But what a challenging task this is! Any attempt is bound to be imperfect, and Spectrum’s hard working web team is overworked and underpaid. But even in an ideal world where the computer systems never go down and the comments can be monitored in real time, it would still be impossible to please everyone in the Spectrum community. I think I can help a little bit.
I have written a browser extension that adds features to the comments section of pages on this site.
The most significant feature is the ability to always hide comments authored by users you have placed on a "Hidden List." I envision people using this extension to hide comments anyone finds consistently distracting or inflammatory, but other uses are certainly possible. I am calling the extension UltraViolet Spectrum Enhancer. Here are a few of its features:
- Provides a show/hide button on every comment.
- Puts a "direct link" by each comment.
- "Hidden List" of usernames whose comments are always hidden by default.
- "Always scroll to new comments" option.
- "Floating Comment Box" option, where the "Add your comment" box is always nearby.
You can read about it in more detail and try it out yourself here: https://github.com/rljacobson/UltraViolet-Spectrum-Enhancer/wiki.
If you are a coder, note that the source code is licensed under the MIT license (essentially public domain). You are welcome to explore the code and contribute to the project. For the rest of you, I invite you to leave your feature requests, questions, and comments in the comments section below.
I hope it contributes to our community through conversation.
This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at http://spectrummagazine.org/node/3803