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Suggestion: Open (not anonymous) thread voting.

 
 
Reply Mon 18 Aug, 2008 11:26 am
I guess I am jumping on the voting is bad bandwagon.

The most troubling to me is that voting is clearly being used as a personal attack. Certain members post completely innocuous posts and rack up high negative numbers... where other people post the same type of posts get positive.

Since voting is anonymous, voting based on who the poster is seems particularly cowardly.

I have three suggestions (to be taken together).

1) Voting should be non-anonymous. Anyone should be able to click on the little box and see who voted up and who voted down for any given thread. This will make it very clear who is voting for what (and why).

2) There should be much clearer guidelines on what appropriate voting means. Is personal vendetta a reason to give a thumbs down? Is disagreeing with a specific post legitimate reason? Should we vote down boring threads, or is this just for truly offensive posts.

3) I think there should be a away to remove voting privileges for people who violate any guidelines in #2.

Just my suggestions... it is mainly the personal vote-downs (and I don't see myself as a victim of this, but have noticed other people being targetted), that bug me the most.
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Type: Discussion • Score: 0 • Views: 12,579 • Replies: 244

 
cyphercat
 
  1  
Reply Mon 18 Aug, 2008 12:10 pm
@ebrown p,
Huh, I wonder if that would be hard to set up. If not, I think it's a cool idea--just because I've thought it would be interesting/useful to see who has voted and what they thought...I still haven't seen anything that I thought looked like "grudge" voting, but come to think of it I haven't been hanging around the politics threads, and I bet that's where you mostly see it, right?
ossobuco
 
  2  
Reply Mon 18 Aug, 2008 12:19 pm
@cyphercat,
I haven't seen grudge voting either, though much interest voting, and some anti sludge voting. But then, I haven't been around politics in several days. Even there, it may just be about interest voting. I don't follow every single thread that is generally opposite my views, though I read some of them. And if I ever click one of those off, it is not about grudge, but making my own view on New Posts more efficient.

I think watching who voted what would be a large sack of worms released and generating more grudge stuff.
DrewDad
 
  7  
Reply Mon 18 Aug, 2008 12:21 pm
@ebrown p,
Quote:
The most troubling to me is that voting is clearly being used as a personal attack. Certain members post completely innocuous posts and rack up high negative numbers... where other people post the same type of posts get positive.

You're seeing a behavior, and assigning a motive. I don't think you have enough data for that.

There are also lots of negative votes against word games. I doubt it's because anyone dislikes the authors of the games, but rather that people are just tired of seeing the subject lines over and over again.

Instead of "attack" think "changing the channel." I've seen this episode of Barney Miller before, and I hardly think the network's feelings should be hurt because I choose not to watch.
wandeljw
 
  5  
Reply Mon 18 Aug, 2008 12:42 pm
@DrewDad,
Drewdad's description is accurate.

Many vote thumbs down on a thread so that it "collapses" from their own view of a list of topics.

It is hard to distinguish innocuous thumbs down from "personal attack" thumbs down.
DrewDad
 
  3  
Reply Mon 18 Aug, 2008 12:45 pm
@wandeljw,
w00t! You like my answer! You like me! You really like me!
wandeljw
 
  1  
Reply Mon 18 Aug, 2008 01:11 pm
@DrewDad,
you are getting carried away (my post deliberately referred to you in the third person) Smile
0 Replies
 
Cycloptichorn
 
  0  
Reply Mon 18 Aug, 2008 01:18 pm
I completely agree with this suggestion, and would add that this is the way such things are done at some other sites which use voting as a means of elevating topics to the top.

And why not? If you have the guts to vote against someone, you ought to be able to stand up for your decision.

Cycloptichorn
ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Mon 18 Aug, 2008 01:21 pm
@wandeljw,
I don't know what an "innocuous thumbs down" means. (Can you flip someone an innocuous bird?).

Part of my point is that what "thumbs down" means is undefined

My sense is that they are quite harsh (seeing as they can end to a type of censure). I give thumbs up for things that interest me, and I give nothing for things that are boring... but a thumbs down should be, in my view of how the world should be, reserved for things that are truly offensive or spiteful (i.e. quite rare).

This is why making thumbs down public is a good idea (combined with a more clear definition of what they mean).

For an example, look at ramafuchs recent topics. All of them have deeply negative ratings. Most of these have no reason for such censure other than what seems to be a knee-jerk negative reaction to the author.

Thomas
 
  2  
Reply Mon 18 Aug, 2008 01:24 pm
@ebrown p,
ebrown p wrote:
The most troubling to me is that voting is clearly being used as a personal attack. Certain members post completely innocuous posts and rack up high negative numbers... where other people post the same type of posts get positive.

Are you seeing this applied to threads, or to posts too?

If you see it mostly applied to threads and their initial posts, then I agree with your observation. I used to agree with your interpretation of it, too. But then Craven explained, to me and others, that in the new systerm, voting a thread down doesn't mean "this is a bad post" or "this poster is way out of line". It simply means, "I don't want to follow this thread. Hide it from my view". So if an innocuous thread is getting high negative ratings, that's not abuse. It simply means that many people on A2K don't want to follow it, and see no point in seeing it.
0 Replies
 
Cycloptichorn
 
  1  
Reply Mon 18 Aug, 2008 01:24 pm
@ebrown p,
Well, if you have the post ordering set to 'most votes,' you're supposed to vote down stuff you don't want to see.

But there's no way to distinguish between stuff you don't want to see, and stuff you don't like. And I have no idea what the point of being able to vote individual posts within a thread is; if you don't want to read someone's post, just ignore them, why should voting up or down matter?

I think it's a part of human nature, that negative votes associated with our posts lead to bad feelings. I don't know how anyone could look at it any other way.

Cycloptichorn
maporsche
 
  1  
Reply Mon 18 Aug, 2008 01:25 pm
@ebrown p,
Rama's post are being voted down because no one can understand them. It doesn't have to do with Rama the person...but Rama the author of posts.

This happened in old A2K. There are several threads started by Rama where it would be Rama talking to himself for 3-20 seperate posts.

I vote down Rama's threads because I don't have the mental capacity to understand what the hell he's trying to say.
cyphercat
 
  3  
Reply Mon 18 Aug, 2008 01:28 pm
@maporsche,
Exactly. I've thumbsed-down the Rama threads I've come across because they are, for me, totally unintelligible. So they just add clutter to my view and don't offer any useful content. It's not out of any negativity toward Ramafuchs, he's difficult to get any feeling for either way, since I usually don't understand him.
Thomas
 
  2  
Reply Mon 18 Aug, 2008 01:28 pm
@ebrown p,
ebrown p wrote:
Part of my point is that what "thumbs down" means is undefined.

Then maybe you haven't followed Craven's threads on voting, because at least when applied to threads and their initial posts, "thumbs down" does have a clear meaning. It means: "I don't care to see this thread. Hide it".
maporsche
 
  2  
Reply Mon 18 Aug, 2008 01:32 pm
@cyphercat,
I've been saying that Rama is going to benefit the least from this voting system. If he felt like he wasn't getting responses before, he's in a lot of trouble now.
0 Replies
 
sozobe
 
  3  
Reply Mon 18 Aug, 2008 01:32 pm
@Cycloptichorn,
Cycloptichorn wrote:
And I have no idea what the point of being able to vote individual posts within a thread is; if you don't want to read someone's post, just ignore them, why should voting up or down matter?


Two different things come to mind:

1.) On questions, the highest-rated post is highlighted as "view best answer, chosen by the community." I haven't done this, but could imagine giving a post a thumbs-down if I think it's been artificially inflated (if the poster is especially popular, for example) and another answer is in fact more informative.

2.) There are many people here who I wouldn't want to ignore in general but who occasionally say things that I think are beyond the pale. I appreciate being able to just collapse something that makes my blood pressure rise every time I read it, rather than ignoring the poster completely.

What I said someplace else is that I like being able to kind of brace myself instead of being whapped upside the head -- if, for example, a poster I haven't ignored says something really odious and it's already voted down before I get there, I know to take a deep breath and expect something annoying before clicking "view" -- as opposed to just meandering along and then "WHOA!"
0 Replies
 
Cycloptichorn
 
  1  
Reply Mon 18 Aug, 2008 01:36 pm
@Thomas,
Quote:
ebrown p wrote:

Part of my point is that what "thumbs down" means is undefined.


Then maybe you haven't followed Craven's threads on voting, because at least when applied to threads and their initial posts, "thumbs down" does have a clear meaning. It means: "I don't care to see this thread. Hide it".


The problem is, it doesn't matter what Craven's definition of thumbs up and thumbs down mean. Those terms already have pre-existing definitions in the minds of the users and they aren't going to stop using those definitions just b/c the creator of the says 'oh, they mean something different here.' People aren't going to be able to give up their instinctive responses.

And, pertaining to the topic - how does any of this change if records are kept and available as to who has done the voting?

Cycloptichorn
ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Mon 18 Aug, 2008 01:40 pm
I get the point that thumbs down for a Thread simply means "I don't care to see this". (I still question the utility of this, but OK).

I haven't seen any reason that "thumbs down" votes should be anonymous.

Does anyone have a argument for anonymous down-thumbing?
maporsche
 
  1  
Reply Mon 18 Aug, 2008 01:42 pm
@ebrown p,
ebrown....given that there are no longer seperate forums to view, if I were unable to collapse threads that I wasn't interested in, I would stop coming to this site because it would be impossible to navigate. Even though I can collapse threads it is still a PITA.

As far as if the votes should be anonymous....I don't care.
wandeljw
 
  1  
Reply Mon 18 Aug, 2008 01:46 pm
@ebrown p,
Quote:
I haven't seen any reason that "thumbs down" votes should be anonymous.

Does anyone have a argument for anonymous down-thumbing?


Ossobuco gave this argument:
Quote:
I think watching who voted what would be a large sack of worms released and generating more grudge stuff.
0 Replies
 
 

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