The Block Bot Reborn

 

The Block Bot team is excited to announce a planned retool and expansion! We are ready to make The Block Bot better for everyone that uses the service.

The original Block Bot grew from an irreverent quick-fix solution aiding a specific online community during a time of hostility. Because of increased popularity, it has grown far beyond its original intent. Although many improvements have been made along the way, we have heard the concerns of the communities we serve and the time has come for a major change.

We are delighted to welcome Lynn Cyrin to our team. She is well qualified to offer her programming and diversity services in order to help us improve. She is a staunch advocate of diversity, and has worked on a number of projects and publications. We are currently busy constructing a shared vision with Lynn detailing how The Block Bot will function long-term.

Currently, The Block Bot only supports one blocking team made of individuals who may disagree and who have a variety of blocking philosophies. The different communities The Block Bot serves also have a diversity of perspectives and expectations that sometimes conflict. One proposed solution is to create a platform to address these concerns, similar to blocktogether.org. Our platform, however, would go beyond sharing personal blocks by enabling people to work together to build moderated block lists to serve specific community needs.

In this developmental stage, the following features for this new platform are being discussed:

  • Facilitating the formation of more than one blocking team.
  • Allowing users to opt-in or opt-out of individual blocker’s blocks.
  • Creating clear policies for adding and removing blockers and admins.
  • Handling appeals more consistently.
  • Expanding users’ block-list choices.
  • Soliciting feedback from users more effectively.
  • Providing a more robust system for users to suggest blocks.

In order to make improvements, Lynn has proposed that the technical ownership of The Block Bot be passed onto CollectQT - http://collectqt.me/.  The members of CollectQT are programmer Lynn Cyrin, Culture and Community Organizer Ophelia Black, and PR Director Kiran Oliver. CollectQT has provisionally agreed to significantly rewrite The Block Bot over the summer.

Since CollectQT maintains a Patreon account, they are able to accept community financial support to pay for hosting, technical support services and development of new back-end code.  While subscribing to The Block Bot will remain free to all, this financial investment will allow the service to transition into a more professional service better suited to support the health and well-being of subscribers more effectively and flexibly. We highly encourage those who are willing and able to contribute to their organization to consider doing so.

Lastly, we would like to assure the communities we aim to support with our service that we are committed to continue to do what we do. We know that our service is important to many people for various reasons and we respect that. Even in the stress of increasingly inventive tactics to stop us and other sometimes intense challenges, we’re committed to serve and we hope that the efforts put into improving our service will prove useful to you.

Any questions or suggestions? Comment below, or contact the admin team:  @MAMelby@Xanthe_Cat and @VanguardVivian. For questions of a technical nature, contact  @LynnMagic.

Thank you so much.

Sincerely,

-          CollectQT and the BlockBot team.

PS: An important message concerning legal issues.

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