Moderating Content

The Dashboard plug-in allows editorial staff to quickly deal with hundreds of user generated content items. It works by using a moderation-state field that must be added as a hidden field to all content types that are to be moderated (see Moderating Content). Moderators, when they accept or reject a content item, or set it to pending, change the value assigned to this field. Template developers can then access this field and determine how to display (or not display) a content item depending on its moderation state. This gives template developers a great deal of flexibility in how moderation is actually implemented in their publications.

A typical moderation scenario is:

  1. User Lisa writes a blog entry about how much she dislikes life, the universe and everything.

  2. Editor John logs into the Dashboard, searches for all blog entries written today.

  3. John sees Lisa's blog entry and finds it a bit too offensive. He sets the blog entry's moderation state to rejected.

  4. Lisa sees on her profile page that her latest blog entry has been rejected, so she edits it to make it more acceptable.

  5. John sees that the rejected entry has been changed and reads it again. Now it's OK, so he sets the moderation state to accepted.

  6. All web site users and visitors can now read Lisa's edited blog entry again.

This is only one of several possible ways moderation can work. It can, for example be set up in a more restrictive way so that nothing is published until the moderator has accepted it (this is called pre-moderation).

In addition to the moderation-state field, the Dashboard plug-in provides a user interface that moderator can use to set the state stored in the field.

Some changes to the moderation-state field trigger a corresponding change in a content item's state property. For instance, marking a content item as pending or rejected automatically sets the content item's state property to Submitted so that is no longer visible in normal listings, such as the lists returned by the article:list tag (unless onlyLive is set to false).

Precisely how moderation works at any particular installation depends on how publication templates make use of these states to choose what get displayed when. The following sections describe how the template developer can access the moderation states.