Hello Episode Community!
With today’s Portal update, we’re starting to roll out our updated Content Review Tool to our review team, and we’re hoping that it will help make review process more efficient for everyone.
During the last several weeks, we’ve learned that we needed better documentation and communication around the results of our guidelines reviews. We’re hopeful that with our updated tech, we can improve our current system in the following 2 ways:
- Centralize our review results, so that we can get our leaderboard algorithms back up and running again.
- Automate email notifications, so that when a review of your story is completed, you’ll know what the outcome of that review was, what actions are being taken from our end (if any), and what actions are being requested of you (if any).
As part of the rollout of these automated emails, you’ll notice that we’ve moved to a more nuanced moderation of stories on the platform. Previously, we could only suspend a story (which removed it from the trending sections) or ban a story (which pulled it from the app). If a story passed our guidelines, there was no way for us to mark that story as approved.
Based on our learnings in the last couple of months, it’s clear that not all content violations are the same, and that the current unilateral approach of suspension is actually less useful when the actual severity of the violations can range from minor to severe.
As a result, here are the updated actions we may take upon completing a guidelines review for stories that we believe have guidelines violations that are fixable:
Blocking a story from rising into the Top 100 in any leaderboard.
- In this case, the story has violated our guidelines, but those violations are minor enough that they do not warrant being blocked from the leaderboards altogether.
Blocking a story from all leaderboards.
- In this case, the story has moderate violations that warrant us limiting the story from being promoted via the leaderboards until edits are complete.
Blocking a story from all leaderboards and search.
- In this case, the story has severe enough violations that we have to remove the story from all the primary places that readers would generally browse for stories.
In all of the above cases, as soon as edits have been made and confirmed, stories that fall into the above categories can be approved and restored to all places they would have normally been promoted.
Lastly, while the following statuses haven’t changed, we wanted to provide more transparency around our process and define a few more terms:
All stories will always start out as Unreviewed.
- Current stories that we’re working through are also considered Unreviewed until we’ve completed the review.
- Every newly published story starts out in Unreviewed status the moment it’s published.
- Moving forward, any story that achieves a rank of 100 or better will automatically be reviewed.
Approved stories may be re-reviewed at any point in the future.
- This may happen for a number of reasons, including (but not limited to) the addition of new content, featuring consideration, or player reports of guidelines violations.
- Banned stories will still be notified when the ban is being applied.
Getting this tool and new moderation tiers into place gets us several steps closer to turning the trending sections back on and moving away from our manual content update system.
Please let us know if you have questions or comments by posting below or reaching out to our support team!
The Episode Team