Discuss Scratch

World_Languages
Scratcher
100+ posts

A better policy about extensions

Why I disagree with the current policy

To start, let’s look at the pros:
  • It removes the risk of malicious extensions being shared via the website.

That’s basically it. Now, let’s look at the cons:
  • Extensions that are open source, ad-free, safe, have limited permissions and a privacy policy, and are owned by Scratchers you trust can’t be mentioned in the website, no matter how useful they are.
  • Scratch users can’t share their creations in more advanced programming languages, except for websites, which can only do very limited things in terms of permissions.
  • Extensions with no permissions can’t be shared, when they can’t do any harm.
  • A useful comment like “I know you’re color-blind, so I suggest you use a program called f.lux, it lets you tweak colors and you’ll be able to code on Scratch easier” would be against the guidelines - how can you welcome all types of people into the website if you can’t share extensions or programs that make using Scratch more accessible?
  • It’s a tremendous amount of time wasted for the moderators to remove links to open source, ad-free, safe extensions.
  • It doesn’t let extension users communicate with extension creators inside the Scratch website without going to an external website, which is against the CGs.
  • Not being able to share Scratcher-made extensions officially from the scratch website makes it harder to connect the Scratch user and the extension, making it easier for people with malicious intent to impersonate the creator and distribute a dangerous copy.

This Policy is Limiting Creativity

I’ll quote myself;

World_Languages wrote:

I personally feel that an extension like this is what the Scratch Team should be promoting. It's an excellent way of getting into programming in other languages, and it really perfectly captures what programming is all about: solving problems in automated and creative ways. Surely this is what Scratch is aimed to be, the first step of a staircase leading into programming. People are more likely to experiment with things close to them (like how many people are learning HTML/CSS through Inspect Element), and if Scratch actively promotes making extensions, more people are likely to learn languages such as JavaScript to be able to do cool things with the website outside the realm of Scratch.
Why I Believe the Current Policy Won’t Work
  • It generates spam, anger and hate. This means more work for the scratch moderators.
  • The line between talking about an extension, mentioning it, linking to it, or advertising it is unclear.
  • Most people who know about the rule disagree with it. Who will report things that are against the policy?
  • Streisand effect: It actually makes people talk more about extensions - when you block something entirely, people have to react, and they inadvertently advertise extensions even more.

This also makes me remember the FNAF ban, when some replicas of the game were banned - people who disagreed, would spam everywhere asking you to revert the rule, and not actually report FNAF replicas. However, in that situation, most people actually understood the situation and started reporting them.

Here, I’m seeing, from the people that stated their point of view in the forum topic, that most actually don’t like the rule, for whatever reason. And only extension users found the rule - with some exceptions. If the only people that know about the rule, like extensions and use them, I’m not sure who the ST expects to report mentions to extensions.

A proposition

  • Nothing with autoupdate would be allowed, at least at first. Userscripts can easily be set to not autoupdate, and are much easier to moderate.
  • Userscripts that are being advertised that collect information need to fill out a form that explains how it works and what information it collects, and send this to the ST. The creator of the userscript also must mandate that users read this before it collects any information (preferably in layman's terms), as well as sending this to the ST.
  • Userscripts without a backend can be advertised freely, as long as they are open source, and the information above is sent to the ST in some way. If they are visibly malicious, Scratchers can report them, and all you need to do is alert them and ban said or extension in it’s noncompliant state. Scripts cannot be invisibly malicious because of the lack of outward requests.
  • Userscripts with a backend or any requests to other sources require acceptance by the ST or an appointed trusted user in order to be advertised, and a reason must be stated in a form for each data point collected. Obviously, not following this can warrant whatever you want (although I don’t think having your head in the sand is punishable here).
  • Userscripts can’t require permissions that they don’t use or aren’t actually necessary in the current release. This is so that the user also knows why they’re granting something when they do it.

That's it. What do you think?

Last edited by World_Languages (Dec. 13, 2017 02:30:50)


    
if <(World_Languages) = [Awesome ]> then

go to [His profile v]
end
if <not <(World_Languages) = [Awesome]>> then
set [World_Languages v] to [Awesome ]


end


when I start as a clone
BE AWESOME
Charles12310
Scratcher
1000+ posts

A better policy about extensions

I have to admit that I actually agree on all of this. I do believe a change must be done.


Click This Link For Some Secrets About Me!
A few internet communication companies want to corrupt the internet by getting rid of net neutrality. Stop Them!
--Waterfall--
Scratcher
500+ posts

A better policy about extensions

I agree with all of this. A change should be made.


-stache-
Scratcher
500+ posts

A better policy about extensions

[I helped edit this]

Last edited by -stache- (Dec. 3, 2017 18:52:03)



3x3 pb: 13.240
3x3 avg: ~21-26
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pufflegamerz
Scratcher
100+ posts

A better policy about extensions

Somebody should make a website that holds a list of all Scratch extensions.

Last edited by pufflegamerz (Dec. 3, 2017 19:36:22)


var knowledge = ["C#", "HTML5", "Web/Game Development"];

for (var i = 0; i < knowledge.length; i++) {
console.log(knowledge[i]);
}

var pc = "8GB DDR3 / 500GB HDD / Intel i5 3.1GHZ 4 Cores / GT 1030 2GB DDR5 6k MHZ";
littlebene
Scratcher
50 posts

A better policy about extensions

Err, I think this would be solved a lot easier if a 13+ age restriction and privacy policies were put on extensions, Therefore prohibiting unknowledgable downloading…. +1 Regardless….
AmazingMech2418
Scratcher
500+ posts

A better policy about extensions

Support! Also, if the ST doesn't want to spend time moderating, there can just be a filter-bot!

set [variable v] to [true]
if <<I finally learned how to do a signature :: sensing> = <variable :: variables>> then
set [response v] to [YES!!!!!]
end
say (show::looks stack) for (stop [all v]::cap) secs
littlebene
Scratcher
50 posts

A better policy about extensions

AmazingMech2418 wrote:

there can just be a filter-bot
For what?
AmazingMech2418
Scratcher
500+ posts

A better policy about extensions

littlebene wrote:

AmazingMech2418 wrote:

there can just be a filter-bot
For what?
To filter out only bad extensions and userscripts.

set [variable v] to [true]
if <<I finally learned how to do a signature :: sensing> = <variable :: variables>> then
set [response v] to [YES!!!!!]
end
say (show::looks stack) for (stop [all v]::cap) secs
littlebene
Scratcher
50 posts

A better policy about extensions

AmazingMech2418 wrote:

To filter out only bad extensions and userscripts.
How would that work?
-stache-
Scratcher
500+ posts

A better policy about extensions

littlebene wrote:

AmazingMech2418 wrote:

To filter out only bad extensions and userscripts.
How would that work?
It wouldn't. Obfuscation is too simple.


3x3 pb: 13.240
3x3 avg: ~21-26
My Amazon Affiliate link
littlebene
Scratcher
50 posts

A better policy about extensions

-stache- wrote:

It wouldn't. Obfuscation is too simple.
Exactly….
AmazingMech2418
Scratcher
500+ posts

A better policy about extensions

AmazingMech2418 wrote:

var allowedExtensions = [];
function checkExt(name,codesite,downloadsite) {
var datavar;
$.get(codesite,function(data,status){datavar=data;});
// a code idea for code-based filters
if (datavar.search("a dangerous possible code goes here...")===-1) {
// other filters like this would go inside here and the following code would go inside all of them
var website;
$.get(downloadsite,function(data,status){website=data;});
if(website.search(codesite)!==-1) {
allowedExtensions.push(name);
}
}
}

This code should work but may not. If not, just a few changes would be needed. There could then be an auto-moderator that checks to see if the names or websites of the extensions appear and if they aren't in the allowedExtensions array, they will be replaced with the “**” that is used by manual extension moderators now.
This is from my idea for a filter-bot at https://scratch.mit.edu/discuss/topic/284440/.

set [variable v] to [true]
if <<I finally learned how to do a signature :: sensing> = <variable :: variables>> then
set [response v] to [YES!!!!!]
end
say (show::looks stack) for (stop [all v]::cap) secs
DangerousLemonade
Scratcher
2 posts

A better policy about extensions

I AGREEE M8

AMAAAZING
--Waterfall--
Scratcher
500+ posts

A better policy about extensions

I completely agree.


-Osiris-
Scratcher
100+ posts

A better policy about extensions

I agree.


RaefWorks_Animations
Scratcher
100+ posts

A better policy about extensions

I don't think that the ST will repeal this, but I certainly am willing to help. I do not like this change at all.

#ExtensionsMatter

                     
                @RaefWorks_Animations
        Creator of Pangea OS | Creator of The Slide Engine Series

PackersRuleGoPack
Scratcher
1000+ posts

A better policy about extensions

littlebene wrote:

Err, I think this would be solved a lot easier if a 13+ age restriction and privacy policies were put on extensions, Therefore prohibiting unknowledgable downloading…. +1 Regardless….
Lol that doesn't work.

PackersRuleGoPack
Scratcher
1000+ posts

A better policy about extensions

pufflegamerz wrote:

Somebody should make a website that holds a list of all Scratch extensions.
I am currently making one, although I won't be able to mention it on Scratch so, it's pretty much useless.

World_Languages
Scratcher
100+ posts

A better policy about extensions

bumpety bump

    
if <(World_Languages) = [Awesome ]> then

go to [His profile v]
end
if <not <(World_Languages) = [Awesome]>> then
set [World_Languages v] to [Awesome ]


end


when I start as a clone
BE AWESOME

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