Is it really about "beta"?
It is claimed the reason of migrating out of slashdot is the "beta". But is it really so? Let's try to do some speculations...
"Beta" is said to be made to fit tastes of the younger audience, flowing recently en masse to Slashdot - in fact, stats show, that Slashdot is currently accesses mosltly from... schools. The same audience is, though, often scorned upon by the "low uids" as the reason of progressively "destroying the old Slashdot". Now, we could conclude, that the deeper reason for both beta and discussion quality are really kids. But it seems, it is still not so simple.
Let us consider an example. So, (i) a bunch of teenagers mods ups some tired joke, or a "captain obvious", as things like that still amuse and educate them. Now, a low uid hates that. But, despite that, (ii) the younger and the older Slashdot might still share some common interests - be it some comment insightfull for all, so a single site might make sense. How to agree that? Would some special sort of moderation be able to please both of the discussed groups?
Attach your proposals below.
A local metamoderation
The metamoderation works globally now - it is one of the factors which decide, how many mod points a user gets. What about making it also local? A metamoderating user would express his/her preferences in this way. An example: it turns out, the user X likes comments of "low uids", but dislikes comments frequently moderated by teenagers? So the system increases that user's "experience", what translates to mods of experienced users being somewhat more visible by this particular user, as opposed to mods of the school crowd. In other words, there would not be a single score, seen by all -- a user by metamoderating would tune, or bias the scoring according to his/her needs. Meanwhile, a kid might still admire, and mod up with "novice points", Captains Obviouses and tired jokes.
This might be made even more complex -- a dynamic cluster analysis might find out by itself groups of users with common tastes, and somewhat tune the scoring to their likes. And, if the said kid writes a quality comment, modded up by experienced users, it would in turn move the kid a bit in the direction of a cluster of "low uids".
Surely, a careful tuning of the system might be needed. To alleviate that a bit and to make the local metamoderation opt-in, every user might be given a choice of his/her sweet spot between a "flat" and an "adaptable" scoring.
Let us discuss a simple, yet intuitive variant of the above.
The quality of user contributions would consist not of a single value, but of three values: novice, neutral, veteran. A user might be thus be e.g. valued a lot by teens by his school--level yet very educational contributions, or conversely, a user might be a long--bearded Unix man that is not into teaching kids at all, but loves deep, clever references to the geek culture. More examples: