Greetings, Bonfire Community!
We are happy to announce that the next Bonfire release will introduce the capacity to define and assign custom roles. This feature, far from being limited to instance administrators, will also be available to individual users and to group caretakers (as part of our groups extension which is currently in development).
The addition of custom roles will empower users define a set of permissions to grant to other users or circles. This paves the way for a more nuanced and personalised way to define interaction within and across communities.
Now instance admins and group caretakers will be able to define and assign custom roles to other members, to distribute responsibilities among broader groups of trusted users, fostering a more diverse and inclusive governance structure within each community.
Imagine a group caretaker creating a custom role named "Mediator". This role could allow certain members to review and act upon flagged content. The Mediators would be notified of flags, and start a dialogue with the author of the flagged post or the person who flagged it, remove the content from the group and/or block a member if necessary, or escalate the issue to instance moderators when further action is waranted.
Moreover, other users could be granted the "Gatekeeper" role, making them responsible for creating invites, managing join requests or manually adding and removing users from the group.
Custom roles aim to alleviate the workload and emotional burden traditionally associated with admin roles. By distributing power among the users, we aspire to foster healthier governance and cultivate more participative and empowered communities.
Outside of group and instance governance, individual users will also benefit from roles by being able to define exactly how other users can or cannot interact with them and their contents, by using custom roles when defining their circles and boundaries or when making a post.
This is just the beginning for custom roles, we plan to refine and enhance this feature based on your feedback and ideas and our iterative design process. As we progress toward the release of Bonfire 1.0, our goal is to make custom roles a robust and integral part of our platform.
Therefore, we wholeheartedly encourage you to share your experiences and feedback with us. Your insights are invaluable in helping us shape and perfect this feature.
Group development is made possible by the NLnet Entrust Grant. The grant will let us research and develop an intial set of features to create and manage groups, as well as federate them with other platforms, such as Guppe, Mobilizon, Lemmy, and Mastodon