Alright. I've been reading some of these posts, and I want to lay things out as I seem to be observing them. The real underlying issue here seems to be circumvention of the deletion rules as people see them via circumvention of the voting rules, so essentially, we're dealing with a question of "how far can staff circumvent votes."
Right now, there are four things people's votes do not count toward the deletion of:
- System Pages - Things essential to the function of the site, like the frontpage, tags pages, etc.
- Author Pages - This is a long standing and traditional rule. Author pages are usually wankery, but it's been agreed on several times that they will not be deleted, regardless of this, because of their historical value and importance in exploring lost/deleted ideas and articles.
- -ARCs - SCPs which are of historical value or necessary for the function of some other reading on the site.
- -D's - SCPs which were considered good examples of what not to do and were "destroyed" via staff/appointee in a tale.
-ARCs and -Ds are essentially two sides of the same coin, with one difference: -ARCs had things written about them before their score dropped and -D's had something written about them after their score dropped.
Currently, there are no plans at all for more -D's to be written. Admittedly, we've said that in the past. Peanuts was supposed to be the last one, period, until the Holy Grail arrived. At this point, I think the site has developed to the point that no more need to be written. We have our examples, people get a laugh out of them, and we move on. Really, truly awful SCPs used to be more… special, I guess? Now, I see one a week that makes the Invincible Class-D look like <insert your own choice of SCP written by Sorts here>.
Here's the secondary issue.
- -ARCs and -Ds have another major point of differentiation. A while back, I tried to get an initiative rolling to turn the -ARCs back into usable SCPs. A few cases were successful, but others were not. This return to the mainlist didn't largely impact the original source material (in some cases), and it was a good way to breathe new life into ideas we thought dead. We still hope to continue this project as more people volunteer and become interested (send me a PM in chat if you're interested).
- -D's, by and large, will not be rewritten or reintegrated because the tale/story about them has been crafted to show them being destroyed.
They have a stay of execution and permission to suck, then. This seems to be the other side of the problem.
I'd like to note that "keeping them off of lowest rated" wasn't the entire reason they were rendered unvotable. Paradox originally made that move because "downvote bait" is a bad thing to have on the site. "Oh, dude, you've got to read this and see how shitty it is, lol" is made a little less painful overall for people. We have to face the fact that people do like downvoting things, and people particularly like seeing things plummet lower and lower. It's more fun for most than seeing them rise meteorically, which is… disappointing, but expected, said the teacher.
Now, as far as I can tell, these are the solutions I think I could easily get behind and support to help deal with this problem:
- Classify -D's as -ARCs which are necessary to the attached story. Move them to the -ARC page under their own unit and delete the -D HUB page. Only allow them to be linked from the top of their tale page. Delete the -D when the tale itself is deleted, like any supplement.
- Delete the -D HUB page and the articles themselves. Move the articles to the Decomm Tales themselves. There are two options for this: a CSS style (preferred) that allows them to be offset with a neat background and formatting or a collapsible1
- Delete the -D HUB page. Keep the articles as they are, but linked only from the Decomm Tales themselves.
In all cases, this takes -D's out of the limelight (and out of their own, special section in the dropdown) and makes them more subservient to their tales rather than the inverse.
- I further propose, in all cases, that the tales themselves be added to a section under the "series" section of Kaktus's new tales organization.
- I additionally propose that, in the case of Option 1 and Option 3, the discussion threads for the actual -D be locked with a link taking the reader to the tale page, specifically to prevent attacks and dogpiling on the older articles.
To give people a brief overview, Moose complied this list of the Decomms, accompanying tales, ratings, and other information you may find useful:
Please note: Some of the -D articles may also qualify for -ARC, due to tales like "Decomm Anon".