Can norms against harassment change behavior and grow participation online?
We are still actively working with communities on this research project. If your subreddit wants to try something similar, please contact us.
Since 2016, CAT Lab (formerly CivilServant) has worked with communities on reddit to better understand the volunteer work of moderation and to test ideas for preventing harassment.
In 2016, we worked with r/science to conduct a field experiment to test the idea. You can learn more about it here.
- Research paper: Matias, J. N. (2019). Preventing Online Harassment and Increasing Group Participation Through Social Norms in 2,190 Science Discussions. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, May 2019.
In 2019, we recruited a further round of communities to work with us. After launching a series of studies during the COVID-19 pandemic, we completed analysis and reported results to communities in August of 2022.
- Community recruitment, March 2019: Reddit Mods: Let’s Test Ideas for Preventing Harassment and Fact-Checking the News
- Study Results: How well do harassment prevention interventions transfer between communities?