How to handle contributors who submit low quality sentences

If an admin sees that a contributor is writing a large number of bad sentences, the admin should send a private message to the contributor to make sure that they understand the site guidelines. If the contributor does not respond, or the admin is not satisfied with the response, the admin can block the contributor temporarily. Once the contributor has demonstrated their willingness to follow the guidelines, the block can be removed.

How to block a contributor

  • Go to the profile page of the contributor and click on "Edit".
  • Set the "Level" to "-1" and click on "Submit".
  • If you go back to the profile page, there should be a warning icon next to the status of the member.

This will prevent the contributor from creating new sentences/translations. They can still do everything else, such as editing or deleting their existing sentences.

Conditions for blocking a contributor

  1. The contributor has added enough sentences for us to have an idea of the overall quality of their contributions. This should be at the very least 10 sentences.
  2. A large proportion of their sentences is not in line with our quality standards. This could be ~20% but depending on the case, we can be more or less tolerant. It's okay to just follow gut feelings and to use common sense rather than rely on a strict number.
  3. Members have posted comments to point out what is wrong and how to correct the sentences.
  4. The contributor did not provide any good reason that explains why their sentences are in fact fine.
  5. The contributor kept adding more wrong sentences while leaving their previous sentences uncorrected.

If one of these conditions is not met, you may want to wait a bit before blocking the user.

Things to do after blocking a contributor

  • Some people may provide email addresses that they never check or just wrong email addresses. Do not assume that the contributor has received notifications for the comments on their sentences. Reach out to the contributor via private message.
  • If the comments on the sentences were written in a language that the contributor does not know well, the contributor may not have understood them. If you cannot write in a language that the contributor knows well, try to find someone in the community who can, and ask them to assist you in teaching the new contributor how Tatoeba works.

Conditions for unblocking a contributor

  1. The contributor has convinced you that they understand what they were doing wrong and will not do it in the future.
  2. The contributor has fixed or deleted the bad sentences, or has given you permission to fix or delete them (if you are comfortable with doing that).


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