Scoop (software)

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Scoop is a content management system (CMS) originally developed by Rusty Foster. Scoop's focus is on collaborative publishing, and its feature set is geared toward encouraging user contributions and participation. Scoop is written in Perl and runs via mod_perl on Apache web servers with a MySQL database backend. Distributed under the GNU General Public License, Scoop is free software. As of 2007, the current stable version of Scoop is 1.1.8.



Scoop was originally developed for use on Kuro5hin and was designed to allow user submissions of content much like Slash, another somewhat similar CMS. But where Slash and its flagship site, Slashdot, relied on a small group of editors to decide what content was actually published, Kuro5hin and Scoop aimed to allow moderation by the users themselves. Scoop's solution was to introduce a "moderation queue" where submitted stories would be visible to registered users, and where users could vote on whether a story should be published; a story which garners enough positive votes to cross a (configurable) "posting threshold" will become publicly visible, and a story which collects too many negative votes will be deleted.

Scoop takes the same broad, collaborative approach to comment moderation as well; where other systems only allow a particular group of superusers to moderate comments, or allocate temporary moderation privileges among users, Scoop allows all registered users to moderate comments.

Scoop is configurable, allowing nearly any feature to be activated or deactivated; and extensible, new features can be written in Perl and integrated into Scoop as "boxes" which are stored in the database and editable from Scoop's web-based administration interface or from a specialized "boxtool".

Although Scoop was originally designed and deployed for kuro5hin, it has since been put into much broader use. Although many Scoop-powered sites today are oriented toward political discussion (for example, the American left-wing on-line community Daily Kos is a prominent Scoop site), Scoop can be found in use in a variety of areas, but improvements to the software appear to have ceased in 2006. Specialized Scoop hosting is available from a number of companies.


Scoop's has a story- and comment-moderation system, a and other features are available. For users, Scoop offers a number of features:

  • Individual weblogs or "diaries" which bypass story moderation and post to a separate section of the site.
  • Polls which may be attached to stories and diaries.
  • Per-user "hotlists" allowing users to keep an eye on particular items of interest to them.
  • Per-user file uploads and sharing.
  • Per-user calendars, both public and private.
  • User submission of RSS feeds from other sites, which can be viewed from Scoop's built-in news aggregator.
  • Configurable views; users may choose to display or hide certain page elements (such as lists of users online, new diaries, RSS feeds, etc.), and have a number of options for how stories and comments are displayed.
  • Submission of stories and comments in plain text, in HTML, or using a simple text-to-HTML "autoformat" system.

For site administrators, Scoop is customizable; Scoop can be configured to use any, all or none of the following features:

  • Moderation of stories and comments by users, with configurable values and thresholds for posting or deleting stories and for hiding negatively-rated comments.
  • An optional "edit queue" which allows stories to be discussed and modified before proceeding to voting.
  • A configurable "autopost" algorithm which determines whether to post or delete a story which remains in moderation beyond a set period of time.
  • Syndication of site content via RSS.
  • Delegation of responsibilities via a user permission system, allowing the definition of single users or groups of users with any desired level of access.
  • Site subscriptions with configurable feature incentives (using built-in payment processing), allowing users to support the site.
  • User-submitted advertisements.
  • Site themes which allow an administrator to change both a site's look and feel and the content it offers.
  • Caching of content to reduce server loads.
  • Automatic archiving of older content and closing of comments on out-of-date stories.
  • Built-in spam control, and throttles to prevent malicious flooding of content.
  • Configurable macros for use in stories and comments.
  • Fine-grained control over what HTML elements may be used in user submissions.
  • Templating system for page design and layout.
  • Reuse of code and content via "blocks" which can be included in any part of any page.
  • Administrative logging for accountability purposes.
  • Web-based administrative interface which can be themed to match user-visible areas of the site and offers control over all site features and configuration.
  • Extensibility via the box system.
  • Documentation including installation procedures (though this is no longer maintained, see external links).

See also

External links

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